Br. Mark Brown2 Kings 2:1-12/Psalm 50:1-6/2 Corinthians 4:3-6/Mark 9:2-9

One of the things that drew me to this community back in 1996 when I was contemplating monastic vocation was the brand new Rule of Life.  Br. Curtis, who was the novice guardian at the time, sent me a pre-publication copy.  The new Rule was the fruit of eight years of reflection and revision by the Society. Since it was completed before I got here, I feel like I can “brag on it”, as we sometimes say in parts of the Midwest where I’m from.

It is a most extraordinary document. It is written with a depth and richness that reward reading and re-reading and re-re-reading over time (which is what we Brothers do, actually).  I’m continually struck by the two chapters on Obedience.  Each of the vows of poverty, celibacy and obedience has two or three chapters devoted to it.  I haven’t made a study of other monastic rules of life, but I suspect the chapters on obedience are ground-breaking in their depth and subtlety. Read More