April 2022 Lectio Divina and Oblate Reflections
Lectio Divina, Matthew 26: 20-50, The Cross of Christ
Book Discussion, Stability: How an ancient monastic practice can restore our relationships, churches, and communities by Nathan Oates
Of Gods and Men, 2010 French film directed by Xavier Beauvois
Additional Resources: Paraclete Press Lenten Series on Stability with reflections from Nathan Oates, Kathleen Norris & Michael Patrick O’Brien, Jonathon Wilson Hartgrove, and Ronald Rohlheiser. Links below.
Matthew 26: 20-50, The Cross of Christ
Stability “is the commitment to a purpose, a place, and a people…At its root, stability is the blend of two biblical concepts: patient endurance and standing firm.” (Stability, Nathan Oates) After reflecting on Matthew 26: 20-50, we consider:
How is the virtue of stability present in the gospel story? Are there similarities between what happened to Jesus in Gethsemane and what is happening in Ukraine?
Many people of Ukraine will not flee their country. “This is my home,” they say. Despite the many risks, they stay. They are rooted in their homeplace, their land. Jesus also stayed; despite knowing he was to be betrayed, despite the possibilities the next day would bring. Everything that can go wrong, does go wrong for Jesus. Everyone betrays him, even the best of friends. It would have been much easier to give up when left alone.
“My soul is very sorrowful even to death.” We all struggle with the virtue of stability, but Jesus stayed IN HIS sorrow; he could have fled. Despite our difficulties, we need to die before we die as Jesus did. Jesus’ steadfastness, his stability, was rooted in doing the will of God. “Your will be done” is an exclamation of surrender that gave Jesus the courage to stay. He died before his own death; he surrendered his will. He was able to face his suffering because he had consented to let God work out what would happen next. As St. Benedict said, “keep death daily before our eyes.”Continue reading “Stay With Me”