This is one of the interesting facts of the life of St. Benedict which men on a vocation discernment retreat will learn and talk about, according to Fr. James Flint, vocation director of St. Procopius Abbey, in the Chicago area.
“We feel that St. Benedict’s way of life, which includes living in community, common prayer, work, and private prayer, is just as important today as when St. Benedict lived years ago,” he said.
The Come and See Discernment Retreat will be held Fri., Nov. 15 to Sun., Nov. 17, 2013 and will provide men age 18-45 a chance to live as as a Benedictine monk, participating with the abbey’s 26 monks in their prayer and community life at their monastery in Lisle, IL.
“At the retreat, the men can expect to deepen their prayer life and more closely discern their God-given vocation,” Fr. James said. “We understand that discernment is often difficult, and we hope to help them along the path, whether they are called to religious life or not.”
Following the teaching of St. Benedict involves a proper balance of prayer, work, and other activities, Fr. James said. Instead of striving for heroic feats, common among monks when the order was founded, Benedict taught the overcoming of one's self-will through obedience and humility, in order to become better Christians who seek the will of God.
Benedictine monks “pray and work,” (in Latin ora et labora),
"Let us get up at last, therefore, while Scripture wakens us and says, 'It is the hour now for us to rise from sleep' (Rom 13:11), and with our eyes opened toward the deifying light, let us hear with attuned ears the divine voice daily crying out a word that admonishes us, saying: 'Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts' (Ps 95:8). — From the Rule of St. Benedict
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