Oblate Letter 30 - Birth of St John the Baptist and Summer 2016

                                       Nothing Dearer thanChrist”

                                         Oblate letter of the Pluscarden Benedictines, Elgin

                              DMB series No 30

                                 Birth of our Patron St John the Baptist and Summer 2016

 

 

THE VOICE OF SCRIPTURE--

The Song of songs

7:13The mandrakes give forth fragrance, and over our doors are all choice fruits, new as well as old, which I have laid up for you, O my beloved.

 8:1O that you were like a brother to me, that nursed at my mother's breast! If I met you outside, I would kiss you, and none would despise me.

 8:2I would lead you and bring you into the house of my mother, and into the chamber of her that conceived me. I would give you spiced wine to drink, the juice of my pomegranates.

 8:3O that his left hand were under my head, and that his right hand embraced me!

 8:4I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, that you stir not up nor awaken love until it please.

l 8:5Who is that coming up from the wilderness, leaning upon her beloved? Under the apple tree I awakened you. There your mother was in travail with you, there she who bore you was in travail.

 8:6Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is strong as death, jealousy is cruel as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, a most vehement flame.

 8:7Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man offered for love all the wealth of his house, it would be utterly scorned.

 

MONASTIC VOICE--

John of Ford

SERMON NINETY- TWO--(extracts)-------

The beginning of the ninety-second sermon on a few verses of the song of Songs

 

"That by 'mandrakes' is meant the charm of human applause, the sweetness of which flatters the bodily sensations of spiritual men, but only externally. They do not let it penetrate to their interior but repel the vainglory by spiritual delight, which is symbolized by 'apples'.

 

'THE MANDRAKES give their fragrance at our gates. All the choice apples, new as well as old, I have saved up for you, my beloved.' Scripture tells us of Reuben that 'in the days of wheat harvest, he went and found mandrakes in a field, which' he carried away and 'gave to Leah, his mother .'* In payment for them, Leah claimed that she had hired a husband from Rachel.* Here, with the bride of the Word, something similar can be seen, since she, in her turn, also went out 'into the field', and mentions that she has found mandrakes. The holy fathers have always held that 'mandrakes' are an image of the fragrance of being well thought of, and we read that they were found in a field, whether by Reuben or by the bride, specifically because the admiration of men is usually provoked more by the exterior exercise of virtue than by the tranquil leisure of contemplative repose..............

(five pages on)............ and make it extremely difficult to guard our gates faithfully and keep out any of this kind of 'fragrance', It is very rare for a man to have his gates open and not to greet with approbation and pleasure that waft of air, as soon as it breathes, however faintly, It is very rare not to be ashamed of having traded our mandrakes to Rachel for a husband,* that is, of not surrendering the happiness of a good conscience for the worthless reward of human approval .Here we can see the bride's unparalleled faithfulness and prudence, She is not entrapped by the scent of mandrakes, and, living as she does, in what we could call paradisal joy, her care is all for the treasure entrusted to her. She lays it out by preserving it, and she preserves it by laying it out. The wisdom of Solomon guides her: she has learned to scatter abroad her springs of water and let her streams flow freely in the streets, yet so as to have them all to herself. In the secret of her pure intention, no stranger shares in those waters.

7. The 'apples, new and old' can be taken as fitting symbols of joys holier than we have previously mentioned, which the bride customarily finds in contemplating her beloved. Obviously, the paradise of heaven is full of this kind of apple, and man was to have fed on them in paradise. But a thief came in, he saw him, and ran away at his side. Moreover at the end of a meal, evening or morning, apples usually appear when we have finished, more as pleasure than food. So the 'apples new and old' of the bride or the bridegroom are what the bride uses for delight and refreshment, either from the mysteries of the past, about the Word becoming flesh, or from the sacraments of today, now that he has become flesh. Even though, as the apostle says, in the light of the new creation, 'the old has passed away; behold, the new has come,' she has nevertheless learned how to make out of them both a delightful and delicate blend; she draws new things from the old, and recognizes old things in the new.......(four pages on to the conclusion of the sermon)

            But it may strike somebody that these various fruits of obedience have a right to be described as new and old, since they are taken up with either interior occupation or exterior responsibility. 'For who is faithful as David in all the king's house, going in and coming out at the king's word?' Whenever the bride is sick for love it is with this kind of apples that she begs the maidens to support her. She considers them a sovereign cure for her sickness, since she comforts herself for her beloved's absence by the fruits of voluntary obedience. To him who is the beloved of men and angels, the one who is lovable and desirable above all else, the spouse of the church, Christ Jesus, be love and honour, praise and empire, forever and  ever, Amen. "

(Twelve pages.) Sermon 92 on ( a part of) The Song of Songs by the Cistercian John of Ford.

 

FROM THE OBLATEMASTER'S DESK:

            The Song of Songs, meaning the greatest of songs (Song 1:1), contains in exquisite poetic form the sublime portrayal and praise of the mutual love of the Lord and his people. The Lord is the Lover and his people are the beloved. Describing this relationship in terms of human love, the author simply follows Israel's tradition. Isaiah (Isaiah 5:1-7; 54:4-8), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 2:2, 3, 32), and Ezekiel (Ez.16; 23) all characterize the covenant between the Lord and Israel as a marriage. Hosea the prophet sees the idolatry of Israel in the adultery of Gomer (Son 1-3). He also represents the Lord speaking to Israel's heart (Song 2:16) and changing her into a new spiritual people, purified by the Babylonian captivity and betrothed anew to her divine Lover "in justice and uprightness, in love and mercy" (Song 2:21). The author of the Song, using the same literary figure, paints a beautiful picture of the ideal Israel, the chosen people of the Old and New Testaments, whom the Lord led by degrees to an exalted spiritual union with himself in the bond of perfect love. When the Song is thus interpreted here is no reason for surprise at the tone of the poem, which employs in its descriptions the courtship and marriage customs of the author's time. Moreover, the poem is not an allegory in which each remark, e. g., in the dialogue of the lovers, has a higher meaning. It is a parable in which the true meaning of mutual love comes from the poem as a whole. While the Song is thus commonly understood by most Catholic scholars, it is also possible to see in it an inspired portrayal of ideal human love. Here we would have from God a description of the sacredness and the depth of married union. Although the poem is attributed to Solomon in the traditional title (Song 1:1), the language and style of the work, among other considerations, point to a time after the end of the Babylonian Exile (538 B.C.) as that in which an unknown poet composed this masterpiece. The structure of the Song is difficult to analyze; here it is regarded as a lyric dialogue, with dramatic movement and interest. The use of marriage as a symbol, characteristic of the Song, is found extensively also in the New Testament (Matthew 9:15; 25:1-13; John 3:29; 2 Cor 11:2; Eph 5:23-32; Rev 19:7-9; 21:9-11). In Christian tradition, the Song has been interpreted in terms of the union between Christ and the Church and, particularly by St. Bernard, of the union between Christ and the individual soul. Throughout the liturgy, especially in the Little Office, there is a consistent application of the Song of Songs to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

            John of Ford conceived the idea of writing a commentary on the Song of Songs when, as he writes, he was 'burning with the desire of God's love'. Typically, this ardent yet earnest Englishman studied in preparation the works of the 'elephants and giants' who had begun the task before him-men like Origen, St. Gregory the Great, and Alcuin, but chiefly his Cistercian brothers, St. Bernard of Clairvaux, whose sermons on the Song had been halted by death at chapter three, and Gilbert of Hoyland, who had continued the commentary to chapter five, verse nine. A master of language and exegesis, and apparently oblivious of the rising scholasticism of his day, John had an avowedly practical purpose in completing the Cistercian commentary. He sought to lead souls to the love of God which inflamed him. He wanted to persuade others to seek to imitate and to contemplate Christ, the one perfect Image of God. For, he believed, by allowing itself to be re-formed into that

Image, the human creature will gradually and gloriously itself be transformed into God's clear image.

            Never before translated into the vernacular, John of Ford's sermons on the Song of Songs have survived in a single extant manuscript. Hidden for eight hundred years, the abbot of Ford emerges as a spiritual father who speaks from his own profound experience of the transforming love of God.

            Perhaps today the Carmelite St John of the Crosswould be better known in his use of the Song of songs:-  "That voice is sweet to her ears, and calls her sweetly, as it is written: “Arise, make haste, My love, My dove, My beautiful one, and come. For winter is now past, the rain is over and gone. The flowers have appeared in our land, the time of pruning is come: the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.”1 When the bride hears the voice of the Bridegroom in her inmost soul, she feels that her troubles are over and her prosperity begun. In the refreshing comfort and sweet sense of this voice she, too, like the nightingale, sends forth a new song of rejoicing to God, in unison with Him Who now moves her to do so. 11. It is for this that the Beloved sings, that the bride in unison with Him may sing to God; this is the aim and desire of the Bridegroom, that the soul should sing with the spirit joyously to God; and this is what He asks of the bride in the Canticle: “Arise, my love, my beautiful one, and come; my dove in the clefts of the rock, in the hollow places of the wall, show me your face, let your voice sound in my ears.”( "A Spiritual Canticle of the Soul and the Bridegroom Christ"--St John of the Cross)

            However high these exegetical and mystical works seem to soar above our humble Benedictine spirituality as at times might seem-- it does give us fearless examples of how free in their lectio were our fathers (and mothers) in the faith when drawing nigh to the Lord. May we feel strengthened and unfettered in their example and rest never until we rest only in the arms of the Lord.

 

 

BOOKS AND MEDIA

It has been brought to my attention that Dom Odo Casel's: "The Mystery of Christ Made Present"(see last Oblate letter 29) is out of print-- but I'm happy to say that another good collection is: "The Mystery of Christian Worship " and it is in print.(Milestones in Catholic Theology) Paperback – March 1, 1999--about £12- £13 new-- but the Oblate library has one copy of" The Mystery of Christ Made Present"!

 The Cistercian Studies series has published all of John of Ford's sermons on the Song of Songs-- 7 volumes-- they vary in availability and price from £12 upwards ( for one volume)-- very readable as you can see and can help reawaken our thirst for Scriptures and for God.

  

PRAYER INTENTIONS

 

For Abbot Anselm's and Bishop Hugh's intentions.

For full success of Oblate Lord Kevin Shinkwin's Bill in the House of Lords for The Protection of the Rights of pre-born Handicapped Persons( and therefore all the handicapped).

 For vocations to Pluscarden--for Br Vincent who is a postulant from Vietnam and for all aspirants. St Mary's, Petersham and Kristo Buase. Br. Adrian and Br. Finbar health. Fr. Dunstan--the repose of the souls of his mother Honoré and now his father Ian-- may they rest in peace.

For Brothers Joseph and John who have come to us from Tien Phuoc priory in Vietnam for two years to study English.

Made his Oblation:- Fr. Andrew MAXIMILIAN Clark.

Novice oblate:-Mrs Jane Marie MacGillivray

 God's blessing on Robert Johnston, Oblate, 40 years continuously as an altar-server.

Pat Carrigan in Fife preparing for Diaconate next year, to be made Acolyte this September and for his Wife Pauline's intentions.

Please pray for the repose of the souls of our recently dead Oblates-- Evanne Foster and Eugene Fernandez-- may they rest in peace.

Please pray for ProvostRobert McDonald and Netta Ewing, Rev. Christopher Mayo, Fr. Bob Halshaw, Paul Costello, Albert Paterson. For Siobhan Gilmour's husband and for her son with a fractured leg. Mrs. Allie Brien, Mrs. Alice Sullivan. Gitte Mackay and Joe and Maggie Barrett and daughter newly married, Leonora Duson hip replacement 14th June, Paul Miller, Margaret Rawcliffe, Mrs. Gertrude Corker’s two daughters, Bob Barr, Brian Milne, Gail Schmitz, Fiona Sellar, Johan(Joy) Baillie, Susan Carson-Rowland's husband Mike, Martin's wife Mary, Graham Dunbar, Beth and ChrisFraser, Bob Clark, Nick MaCrae’s(just turned 90--congratulations!) son, Martin MaCrae battling illness, Dr. David Paterson and his wife Angela granddaughter Grace, Bryan Miller, Jacqui’s daughter Sally, Hester du Plessis, Poppy Sinclair, John Gleeson hip operation, Ian and Frederick Brodie--the twins, for Pat Foster, Eddy Sands, James and Helen Timoney, Carolyn and Marshall Boardman and especially their son Malcolm, Martin Farrelly and especially for his wife Val, and also for Peter Wynne Sunday, 8.00 am altar-server at Mass here for 40 years in hospital at writing, David Braine, philosopher, Susan Stephen, Evelyn, Violet and Sheila and all friends of the Abbey and for all oblates, and all the sick, and those who care for them--and for Josaphat and Charles our sponsored seminarians. For Deacon Peter Macdonald of Aberdeen being ordained Priest on the 13th June.

Events

Every Year

Julian Group Monthly at the Abbey. contemplative prayer group meet monthlyon the first Tuesday of each month after Mass here. You are welcome. Silent prayer inspired by the spirituality of Venerable Julian ofNorwich.

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2016

This Year 2016 The monks of Pluscarden Abbey offer a special opportunity to see at firsthand what monastic life is about, during the weekend Friday 19th to Monday 22nd August 2016.The invitation is extended to single young men, Catholics who practise their faith, aged 18 - 35. There will be no charge for the weekend.

Do you our Oblates and friends know of anyone who might be interested?--- and can be invited to contact us through the web form, or write to:

Fr. Benedict Hardy OSB

Pluscarden Abbey,

Elgin. Moray. IV30 8UA

 

This Year 2016Why not join in with the Diocesan Annual Pilgrimage--Pluscarden Abbey has a designated Holy door of Mercy-- the north, solid oak, Norman door with the latch. Join with our Lady of Pluscarden and Bishop Hugh and Abbot Anselm on the

26th June Programme for the Day:

1.00pm – Exposition in the Lady Chapel (until 3.00pm)
1.00pm – Individual confessions available in 4 parlours at St. Benedict’s Retreat (until 3.00pm)
3.30pm – Principal Mass of the day followed by a Marian procession, with hymns and devotions in the garden, facing St. Benedict’s Retreat Everyone is Welcome to Come and Join this Glorious Celebration!

3rd July The Annual Pilgrimage Mass at Scalan the secret seminary in times of open persecution will be held on Sunday 3rd July. This year marks the 300th anniversary of its founding. Archbishop Leo of St Andrews and Edinburgh will be the preacher.--Within striking distance of Pluscarden if you are staying here for the week of the two pilgrimages.

 This Year 2016:-17-20 October: 6th UK National Oblates’ Retreat at Mount St Bernard Abbey led by Abbot Erik Varden and Sr. Laurentia Johns. Please register throughUKOT website/for details: www.benedictine-oblates.netor Mrs. Pam Morey 1 Lypiatt View, Bussage, Stroud, GL6 8DA. Englandor email   ukoblateteam@gmail.com

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2017

2017--Pluscarden Oblates Lenten Retreat led By Fr. Abbot the first weekend of Lent 3rd-6th March next year. Put it in your diaries please-- and you could always ask the guestmaster to pencil you in.

2017 next year4th International Congress of Benedictine Oblates 4th-10th November 2017 in Rome- Theme " A Way Froward--The Benedictine community in Movement"--"Three days, a wonderful opportunity for reflection and meeting Oblates from other monasteries."--Fr. Martin: I think we are allowed at least 2 delegates--we have one already--John Mckinlay. So we needanother -- and you can always go on the short leet -- just let me know-- again you can get more information possibly from Mrs. Pam Morey contact as above. As you know I'm at oblatemaster@pluscardenabbey.org or if you are looking at our website just now the @ is substituted with AT for all email addresses for technical reasons! ( if I remember to do it!)

 

2017  Next Year5th June-3rd September   1230 pilgrimage      (sponsored)

-- in aid of South range appeal.

Pluscarden 1230 Pilgrimage-please register to take part as soon as possible! Contact Postal Address and full details:-

Pluscarden Abbey Appeal Office

216 High Street

Elgin IV30 1BA

Phone: Tel. +44 (0)1343 555038 Mob. 07415 971024 www.appealpluscardenabbey.org.uk                  (with a web form to register if you prefer)

CHAPTERS

·      St Mungo's  chapter, Glasgow:-We meet on the second Saturday of each month at 2 p.m. Contact can be made via Peter Aitken. Tel. 0141 427 2084, or via Graham Dunbar at 0141 558 4323 as group Secretary and Treasurer.

·      St Margaret’s Chapter, Dunfermline monthly meetings as announced, All details contact Pat Carrigan smcb_oblates@live.co.uk

·      St. Monica’s Chapter, Thurso. Contact Jane Coll. "Scaraben”, Westside, Dunnet, Thurso, Caithness, KY14 8YD. Phone 01847 851467 and as announced.

·      St. Peter's chapter of oblates Aberdeen:- next meeting-- will be Wednesday 6th September 2016 at St. Peter's Catholic Church, Castlegate, Aberdeen.   at 5pm. e-mail brianbmilne2647@gmail.com that's my personal e-mail        (Brian Milne convener),  phone 01224 485781 mobile 07443032289

·      St. Mirin’s Chapter. Paisley. Date: 1st Saturday each month. Time 2-4 pm. Venue: Hall 2, St Mirin’s Cathedral, Cathedral Precincts, Incle Street Paisley, PA1 1HR—secure parking there within Cathedral enclosure. Farther information: St Mirin Chapter, Benedictine Oblate Group, c/o Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm, PA13 4JT m: 07810 350006

UGANDAN SEMINARIAN UPDATE

 

JOSAPHAT, our Ugandan Seminarian, is now well into the second semester of his first year at Major Seminary in Gulu in the North of Uganda.  He will spend three full years here studying theology and philosophy.  He will then go on to National Seminary to study theology.  

 

We are now supporting a second student.  CHARLES has started at junior seminary, St Peter's College in Tororo. Tororo is also Josaphat's home town.  Charles plans to follow the same path as Josaphat.

 

Without the prayers and financial support of the Oblates, these young men would not be at seminary.  If you would be interested in helping us support Josaphat and Charles (this would entail a monthly standing order of between £10 - £15) please contact Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm, PA13 4JT.  Tel: 07810 350006 or email: jcmurdoch@yahoo.co.uk

 

 

"HE MUST INCREASE AND I MUST DECREASE"  John 3.30

 

 

MAY OUR PATRONS, OUR LADY OF PLUSCARDEN,

ST JOHN THE BAPTIST  AND ST ANDREW

 AND OUR HOLY FATHER ST BENEDICT

PRAY FOR US!

 

WITH PRAYER AND +BLESSING FOR  A RESTORATIVE AND  RECREATIONAL SUMMER   

                        IN THE LOVE OF CHRIST                              

 

                                                                                                     Fr. Martin

 

Oblate Letter 29 Lent & Easter 2016

"Nothing Dearer thanChrist”

Oblate letter of the Pluscarden Benedictines, Elgin,

Moray, Scotland. IV30 8UA.

Tel. (01343) 890257 fax 890258

Email oblatemaster@pluscardenabbey.org

Website www.pluscardenabbey.org

DMB series No 29: Lent and Easter 2016

 

 

MONASTIC VOICE

Dom Odo Casel: The Mystery of Christ Made Present – “Authentic Adoration of the Cross”:

 

“It is now plain to see that the decisive event in the life of Jesus was his death. From time to time one hears it said today that there are two ways of walking with the Lord. We may accompany him on his earthly journeys or venerate him as the exalted one. Both ways are said to be good, and each Christian must choose the way that suits him. This view is not in harmony with the scriptures or the teaching of the Fathers. Holy Scripture demonstrates clearly how the Lord himself throughout his life constantly alluded to his death: ‘Now we are going up to Jerusalem’ (Lk. 18:31). His whole life on earth was one offertory procession towards the hour of his death, which then became his entry into the Father's presence.”

 

FROM THE OBLATEMASTER’S DESK: Dom Odo Casel of our order is a famous name in liturgical studies – a mystic whose entire inspiration was the liturgy and Christ in the liturgy – rather like our own Blessed Columba Marmion.

Each of us as monk or oblate is to read over chapter 49 of the Rule at the beginning of Lent and then to decide prudently how to observe Lent.

Our Monastic Voice this quarter gives us a programmatic sentence to guide our Lent and indeed our whole lives as Christians and our prayer and if Dom Odo Casel had written nothing else he would have done well with this one sentence: “His whole life on earth was one offertory procession towards the hour of his death, which then became his entry into the Father's presence.”

This gives the frame of reference for us to interpret and understand our own lives too with the centre of gravity very obviously being in eternal life. This life is the “offertory procession” – a “school of the Lord’s service”. It is useful to follow through on this and seek for the “penitential rite for example in our lives”. It is hard to see how the “Ita missa est” when translated into my life which is “the offertory procession on earth” doesn’t become the “I shall spend my heaven upon doing good on earth” of St Therese of Lisieux.

Let us use this sentence of Dom Odo Casel's to direct our prayer this Lent and Easter, “His whole life on earth was one offertory procession towards the hour of his death, which then became his entry into the Father's presence.” – This is your life – this is my life!

 

BOOKS AND MEDIA

Dom Odo Casel O.S.B. born Koblenz, 1886; died at the Abbey of the Holy Cross of Herstelle, 1948; was a German Benedictine monk liturgist and theologian. He entered the Abbey of Maria-Laach in 1905; he made olemn profession in 1907, was ordained priest in 1911, graduated in philosophy in Bonn in 1919 and later in Rome in theology with a thesis on the Eucharist. He died suddenly on the morning of Easter in 1948, leaving his disciples and experts in liturgy the opportunity to implement his findings and theological insights expressed especially in the fifteen volumes of his Yearbook on the Liturgy.

See especially this Lent perhaps: The Mystery of Christ Made Present published in English in 1999 (St Bede’s Publications ISBN 1-879007-38-x, now sadly out of print), translated by the late Fr Ronnie Walls of the diocese of Aberdeen (see his life The One True Kirk and its update Love Strong as Death).

If you want a different version of the Rule and Commentary this Lent why not look at Mother Mary David Totah’s Daily Reading from the Rule of St Benedict With a Short commentary (with dates!), available from St Cecilia’s abbey, Ryde, Isle of Wight PO33 1LH

 

PRAYER INTENTIONS

 

For Abbot Anselm’s and Bishop Hugh’s intentions. For vocations to Pluscarden; for Br Vincent who is a postulant from Vietnam and all aspirants. St Mary’s, Petersham and Kristo Buase. Br Adrian, 90 next month! and Br Finbar’s health. Fr Dunstan who has his Silver Jubilee of profession the first weekend of Lent this year; RIP his mother Honor Robertson who has just died and for his father who is almost 90 and very poorly. For Brs Joseph and John who have come to us from Tien Phuoc priory in Vietnam for two years to study English. For Mother Mary Clare, founder of St Scholastica’s Petersham RIP 3rd January 2016. For John McKinlay’s Ruby wedding anniversary!

Please pray also for Mgr Robert Provost McDonald, Netta Ewing,Jim Lavery, Rev. Christopher Mayo, Dr David Paterson’s granddaughter Grace, Fr Bob Halshaw, Paul Costello, Albert Paterson. For Mairi Cuthbert’s husband. Mrs Allie Brien, Mrs Alice Sullivan. Gitte Mackay and Joe Barrett (knee replacement) and his wife Maggie Barrett, John Gleeson (hip replacement), Paul Miller, Margaret Rawcliffe, Mrs Gertrude Corker’s two daughters, Bob Barr, Brian Milne, Gail Schmitzcontinued improvement, Fiona Sellar, Johan (Joy) Baillie, Michael Carson-Rowland, Martin’s wife Mary, Graham Dunbar, Beth Fraser and her husband Chris, Bob Clark, Nick MaCrae’s son, Martin MaCrae battling illness, Dr David Paterson and his wife Angela, Jacqui’s daughter Sally, Hester du Plessis, Poppy Sinclair, John Gleeson (hip operation), Ian and Frederick Brodie (the twins), for Pat Foster (poorly), Eddy Sands, James and Helen Timoney, Carolyn and Marshall Boardman and especially their son Malcolm, Martin Farrelly and especially for his wife Val, David Braine, Susan Stephen, Evelyn, Violet and Sheila, all friends of the Abbey, all oblates, and all the sick, and those who care for them, and for Josaphat our sponsored seminarian.

 

EVENTS

Oblate Retreat here FRIDAY 19TH – MONDAY 22ND FEBRUARY 2016 at Pluscarden SECOND weekend of Lent led by Fr Abbot, our Abbot Anselm, as before. Do mark it in your diary for the SECOND Weekend of the Second Sunday of Lent for 2016, DAYS AWAY FROM NOW. (The change is because of Fr Dunstan’s Silver Jubilee!) if staying arrange with the guestmaster, Fr Bede, please.

 

CONFERENCE TALKS

1. Saturday 20th February 10.30 am
2. Saturday 20th February 3.00 pm

3. Sunday 21st February 3.00 pm

Fr Abbot will preach at the Sunday Mass and there will be another opportunity to renew your Oblation at the final Mass at 9 am on Monday 22nd February. Fr Martin will be available in this Year of Mercy for the Sacrament of Confession.

 

Tuesday 17th – Thursday 19th May: the Annual Pentecost Lectures on “Newman on Vatican II”, by Fr Ian Ker (Newman scholar). Please book with Fr Bede as usual unless you are travelling in or commuting.

 

Pluscarden 1230 Pilgrimage – please register to take part by March 31st this year!

 

17-20 October: UK National Oblates’ Retreat at Mount St Bernard Abbey led by Abbot Erik Varden and Sr Laurentia Johns. Please watch UKOT website for details: www.benedictine-oblates.net

 

CHAPTERS

·      St Mungo’s chapter: Meet on the second Saturday of each month at 2 pm. Contact can be made via Peter Aitken. Tel. 0141 427 2084, or via Graham Dunbar at 0141 558 4323 as group Secretary and Treasurer.

·      St Margaret’s Chapter, Dunfermline as announced. Contact Pat Carrigan smcb_oblates@live.co.uk

·      St Monica’s Chapter, Thurso. Contact Jane Coll. “Scaraben”, Westside, Dunnet, Thurso, Caithness, KY14 8YD. Phone 01847 851467 as announced.

·      St Peter’s Chapter: next meeting WEDNESDAY 10TH FEBRUARY AT 5 PM IN ST PETER'S CHURCH PARISH ROOM AND EVERY MONTH UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. e-mail: brianbmilne2647@gmail.com tel 01224 485781; mobile 07443032289.

·      St Mirin’s Chapter: 1st Saturday each month. Time 2-4 pm. Venue: Hall 2, St Mirin’s Cathedral, Cathedral Precincts, Incle Street Paisley, PA1 1HR —secure parking there within Cathedral enclosure. Further information: St Mirin Chapter, Benedictine Oblate Group, c/o Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm, PA13 4JT m: 07810 350006

 

UGANDAN SEMINARIAN UPDATE

“Josaphat, our Ugandan Seminarian, has just completed his first semester at the Major Seminary in Gulu in the north of Uganda thanks to the financial help of the Pluscarden Oblates. He will spend the next 3 years in Gulu studying Theology and Philosophy before his final year in the Ggaba National Seminary near Kampala. The cost of education Josaphat is shared by ourselves and his home Archdiocese of Tororo. To sustain our support we need more Sponsors. Could you please reflect and see if you could support Josaphat in his education in any way by a monthly standing order of £10 or £15 or a donation. If you find you would like to sponsor Josaphat then please contact Campbell Murdoch who I will be handing over to. His contact details are: Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm PA13 4JT; tel. 07810-350006; email:  jcmurdoch@yahoo.co.uk  

I pray that you will support Campbell as well as you supported my efforts.

Paul

 

“AND MAY HE BRING US ALL ALIKE TO LIFE EVERLASTING”!   RB72

 

IN THE LOVE OF CHRIST AND WITH BLESSINGS FOR LENT AND EASTER,

IN SPSNB,

Fr Martin

 

 

 

Oblate Letter 28 Advent Christmas 2015 Pluscarden Abbey .Tous Gratuis. PAX

"NOTHING DEARER THAN CHRIST"

Oblate Letter

Pluscarden Benedictines
Elgin, Moray, IV30 8UA, Scotland .U.K.

ph(01343) 890257 fax(01343) 890258
www.pluscardenabbey.org

DMB Series No. 28 2015
Advent Christmas quarter

 

Monastic Voice        

Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity

46. 'A Christmas in Carmel'            "I am writing to you before Matins, in our dear little cell, and I wish I were an artist that I might make a sketch for you of the whole scene. There is a beautiful starry sky, and the moonlight pours into our cell through frozen window panes. It is entrancing. Our window looks on to the ambulatory, an interior garden, surrounded by our big cloister. On a rock in the middle, a large Cross stands out. Everything is silent and calm ; and that makes me think of the night on which little Jesus came to us. I can almost hear the angels singing their sweet hymn: He is indeed Emmanuel, God with us.

A Christmas in Carmel is unique! In the evening I installed myself in the Choir and spent the whole vigil there with Our Lady, waiting for the Divine Child, who would be born this time not in the crib, but in my soul, or rather in our souls, for He is indeed Emmanuel, God with us.

47. 'The God of the Crib'        Did not the God of the Crib tell you deep in the silence of your soul what good wishes His Carmelite had confided to Him for you? As the Divine Child dwells in my soul, His prayer is all mine and I love to direct this prayer upon those to whom my heart remains always deeply grateful. Which is just one way of telling you that you have a big share in my poor little prayers ! I have always loved this beautiful feast of Christmas, but in Carmel it has something very special about it. This time, instead of spending the holy vigil between Mother and Marguerite, I spent it during the great silence, in Choir, very close to Him, and I loved thinking to myself: 'He is my All, my One and All.' What happiness, what peace, that brings to my soul. He is the only One. I have given Him everything; if I look towards earth, I see nothing but loneliness and even emptiness, for I cannot say that my heart has not suffered, but if I fix my eyes on Him, my Shining Star , everything else vanishes, and I lose myself in Him like a drop of water in the ocean. There all is calm and tranquil, there I find the wonderful peace of God, the peace St Paul spoke of when He said that 'it surpasses all our thinking'.

Sunday will be the anniversary of the great day of my profession. I shall be in retreat, and am glad to be able to pass the day with my Bridegroom. I am so hungry for Him; He hollows out deep chasms in my soul, chasms which He alone can fill, and, to that end, He plunges me into deep silences which I have, no wish ever to leave.

48. 'To be a constant prayer'

There is so much to be atoned for, so much to be implored; and I am convinced that to meet so many needs one must become a 'constant prayer' and exercise great love. The power of a soul surrendered to love is so great! Magdalene is a wonderful example, one word from her was enough to obtain the resurrection of Lazarus.

In our beloved France we have a great need of God's power to raise us from the dead. I love to call down upon her the Precious Blood He shed for us. St Paul says, 'It is in Him and through His blood that we enjoy redemption, the forgiveness of our sins. So rich is God's grace that has overflowed upon us.' This thought is a great help to me. It is so good in those hours when we feel nothing but our miseries to go and be saved by Him. I am full of such miseries, but God has given me a Mother, an image of His mercy, who is able at a word to calm all the anxieties in the soul of her little one and give her wings with which to fly up into the radiance of the creative Star. So I live in thanksgiving, joining in the eternal praise sung in the heavenly courts, serving my apprenticeship while still on earth.

Pray for your child. Consecrate her with the Sacred Host, so that nothing may remain of poor Elizabeth, but that she may live entirely for the Trinity."

 

From The Oblatemaster's Desk

"In our beloved France we have a great need of God's power to raise us from the dead. I love to call down upon her the Precious Blood He shed for us. St Paul says, 'It is in Him and through His blood that we enjoy redemption, the forgiveness of our sins." These words are particularly poignant at this time when we mourn the untimely deaths of innocent victims in Paris, may they rest in peace and our Lord comfort the bereaved.

Always the feast of the Holy Innocents and Herod's hatred seem to be closely bound up with God's extravagant love for us shown in Christmas. The humble love of Christ always makes the devil rage.

But often as the military jets fly over us at the Sanctus or at the Consecration here at Pluscarden I muse on the words of a Legionary of Mary in the Stella Maris hostel for down-and-outs in Dublin when hearing oft repeated, mindless oaths from some of the residents-- he would say smiling calmly with conviction "It's their way of praying".

So it is when everything in daily life goes wrong or when inappropriate noise blots out the mostHoly ofwords-- it is the devil glorifying God in the only way he knows how-- in reverse, in negative, in contradiction. BUT the Lord does not allow the devilto IGNORE God's glory and God's love but he must perversely punctuate with his darkness the glories of God's light. The devil is pressed into the service of the Lord's punctuation, black against white, and hellish, ear-splitting discord into God's counterpoint. The devil's rage against the light is tempered into the plangency of God's harmonies.

Let us pray this Advent that the raucous roar of the world both outward and inward may give way this Christmas to a desire and a love so profound that we may join with Blessed Elizabeth saying, "I am so hungry for Him; He hollows out deep chasms in my soul, chasms which He alone can fill, and, to that end, He plunges me into deep silences which I have,

 no wish ever to leave."

 

Books and Media 
SISTER ELIZABETH OF THE TRINITY Spiritual WritingsLetters, Reatreats and "Unpublished Notes" Edited by M.M Philipon O.P.    OCLC no. 19646504 published 1962-- still available new and second-hand.    ------a good selection

At the end of her life, she began to call herself "Laudem Gloriae". Elizabeth wanted that to be her appellation in Heaven because it means "praise of glory". She said, "I think that in Heaven my mission will be to draw souls by helping them to go out of themselves in order to cling to God by a wholly simple and loving movement, and to keep them in this great silence within which will allow God to communicate Himself to them and to transform them into Himself."

 

PRAYER INTENTIONS 

For Br. Martin Osei of KB who made his Solemn Profession on the 1st November, All Saints. For our new novice Oblates Mairi Cuthbert and Michael Gilfedder. Golden Jubilarian:- priesthood, Fr. John Kirwan, John McKinlay, marriage 25 years. For Pat Carrigan's diaconal studies. For Deacon Peter Morris CSSR. thanksgiving ordained Priest at St Mary's Cathedral Aberdeen on the 26th October and for Mum and Dad and Sister all Oblates. For Abbot Anselm's and Bishop Hugh's intentions. For vocations to Pluscarden-- for Br Vincent who is a postulant from Vietnam and all aspirants. St Mary's, Petersham and Kristo Buase. Br. Adrian and Br. Finbar, and Br. Timothy's health. Please pray for Br. Cyprian who is in his Silver Jubilee year of Profession and keeping the celebration on the 14th December (Solemn Profession) & Fr. Dunstan has his Silver Jubilee of profession the first weekend of Lent next year. For Brothers Joseph and John who have come to us from Tien Phuoc priory in Vietnam for two years to study English.

Humble apologies to Connie Reid--Oblate--When Oblates of Pluscarden told me that Connie Reid had died how was I to know that the Connie Reid of whom they informed me of her death was NOT our Oblate Connie Reid of Peterhead and who is an Oblige of Pluscarden Abbey-- their Connie Reid was, God rest her, not an oblate of Pluscarden and lived in FIFE!-- Apologies our Petrhead Connie! Both have been glad of the extra prayers -- our Connie told me so although our Oblate Connie of Peterhead got a wee bit of a surprise!(Thanks be to God she is still with us -- she has a strong heart!) Also John McKinlay said I'm bumping up his age a wee bit -- it's his silver Jubilee of marriage not his golden Jubilee! Ye cannie be right all the time!

Please pray for our sick Oblates and their relatives & especially Oblates Fr. Bob Halshaw, Paul Costello and postulant Oblate Albert Paterson cancer treatment. For Mairi Cuthbert's husband. Mrs. Allie Brien, Mrs. Alice Sullivan. Gitte Mackay and Maggie Barrett, Paul Miller, Margaret Rawcliffe, Mike Carson-Rowland Mrs. Gertrude Corker’s two daughters, Bob Barr, Brian Milne, Gail Schmitz continued improvement, Fiona Sellar, Martin's wife Mary, Graham Dunbar, Beth Fraser and her husband Chris, Bob Clark, Nick MaCrae’s son, Martin MaCrae battling illness, Dr. David Paterson and his wife Angela, Jacqui’s daughter Sally, Hester du Plessis, Poppy Sinclair,John Gleeson hip operation, Ian and Frederick Brodie--the twins, for Pat Foster poorly, Eddy Sands, Johan Baillie, James and Helen Timoney, and Pat Foster also very ill, Carolyn and Marshall Boardman and especially their son Malcolm, Martin Farrelly and especially for his wife Val, David Braine, Susan Stephen, Evelyn needs prayers for illness, Violet, Sheila and all friends of the Abbey and for all oblates, and all the sick, and those who care for them--and for Josaphat our sponsored seminarian.

 

 

Events

Ø  Oblate Retreat here at Pluscarden--NB Change of time SECOND weekend of Lent February 2015 led by Fr. Abbot, our Abbot Anselm, as before, a great success-- thank you Fr. Abbot! Do mark it in your diary for the SECOND Weekend of the Second Sunday (arriving Friday 19th to Monday 22nd February, departing after Monday morning Mass) of Lent for 2016. (The change is because of Fr. Dunstan's Silver Jubilee!)--if staying arrange with the guestmaster, Fr. Bede, please.

Ø  Annual Pentecost lectures Tuesday 17th May to Thursday 19th May--Theme:- " Newman on Vatican ll"--Speaker Fr. Ian Ker famous Newman Scholar. If staying please book with Fr. Bede-- unless commuting in.

CHAPTERS

·      St Mungo’s Chapter Glasgow. 2nd Saturday of each month. Peter Aitken 11, Maxwell Grove, Glasgow. G41 5JP. Phone: 0141 4272084. Monthly meetings all year round.

·      St Margaret’s Chapter, Dunfermline as announced. Contact Pat Carrigan smcb_oblates@live.co.uk

·      St. Monica’s Chapter, Thurso. Contact Jane Coll. "Scaraben”, Westside, Dunnet, Thurso, Caithness, KY14 8YD. Phone 01847 851467 as announced.

·      ST.PETER'S CHAPTER OF OBLATES-restored: Aberdeen-- GOOD NEWS --MEETINGS STARTED  AGAIN ON NOVEMBER THE FIRST WEDNESDAY (4th November) IN ST.PETER'S church parish ROOM BETWEEN 5PM AND 6PM AND WILL MEET EVERY MONTH AFTER THAT UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE AND IT WILL BE "ST.PETER'S CHAPTER". AS I AM INTO CHURCH ON WEDNESDAY'S PREPARING THE BULLETIN ANYWAY ---Brian---- MY CONTACT DETAILS WILL BE e-mail brianbmilne2647ATgmail.com that's my personal e-mail (AT=@))* address my tel no 01224 485781 mobile no 07443032289 ----- from Brian Milne .   NB-  *REPLACE AT WITH @ TO EMAIL

·      St. Mirin’s Chapter. Date: 1st Saturday each month. Time 2-4 pm. Venue: Hall 2, St Mirin’s Cathedral, Cathedral Precincts, Incle Street Paisley, PA1 1HR—secure parking there within Cathedral enclosure. Farther information: St Mirin Chapter, Benedictine Oblate Group, c/o Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm, PA13 4JT m: 07810 350006

 

 

 

UGANDAN SEMINARIAN UPDATE

“Josaphat, our Ugandan Seminarian, has just completed his first semester at the Major Seminary in Gulu in the north of Uganda thanks to the financial help of the Pluscarden Oblates. He will spend the next 3 years in Gulu studying Theology and Philosophy before his final year in the Ggaba National Seminary near Kampala. The cost of education Josaphat is shared by ourselves and his home Archdiocese of Tororo. Josaphat is now off home to Tororo for Christmas.

To sustain our support we need more Sponsors. Could you please reflect & see if you could support Josaphat in his education in any way by a monthly standing order of £10 or £15 or a donation. If you find you would like to sponsor Josaphat then please contact Campbell Murdoch who I will be handing over to.

His contact details are:-Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm PA13 4JT Telephone 07810-350006 email:- jcmurdochatyahoo.co.uk *

I pray that you will support Campbell as well as you supported my efforts.

 yours, Paul                    (note :-Campbells' emailabove -- *replace at with @ to make it work! This is to avoid automatic hacking.)

 

Misericordiae Vultus BULL OF INDICTION OF THE EXTRAORDINARY JUBILEE OF MERCY

 " My thoughts now turn to the Mother of Mercy. May the sweetness of her countenance watch over us in this Holy Year, so that all of us may rediscover the joy of God’s tenderness. No one has penetrated the profound mystery of the incarnation like Mary. Her entire life was patterned after the presence of mercy made flesh. The Mother of the Crucified and Risen One has entered the sanctuary of divine mercy because she participated intimately in the mystery of His love. Chosen to be the Mother of the Son of God, Mary, from the outset, was prepared by the love of God to be the Ark of the Covenant  between God and man. She treasured divine mercy in her heart in perfect harmony with her Son Jesus. " Pope Francis

Prayerful blessings at Christmas

              to each of you,

                      in the love of Christ

                                                  Fr. Martin

                                                                               PAX

 

Late extra to Oblate Letter 28—Advent Christmas:- Pluscarden:—Prayers:-
Mike Carson-Rowland, dialysis and for his WifeSusan Carson-Rowland—Attending Raigmore hospital.
Rev. Christopher Mayo, Episcopalian priest in Brora--- to have major operation this weekend Raigmore hospital, and for his Wife
                Please add both to the Christmas prayer-list—just missed the main sending.
                          
                            Blessings love and prayers,
                                                                          Fr. Martin

Oblate Letter 27 Autumn 2015 Exaltation of the Cross

Nothing Dearer Than Christ

 

Oblate Letter of the

Pluscarden Benedictines

Elgin, Moray, IV30 8UA, Scotland .U.K..

ph(01343) 890257 fax(01343) 890258

 

www.pluscardenabbey.org

DMB Series No.27 2015 Exaltation of the Cross Autumn quarter

Monastic Voice

Cassiodorus:-

COMMENTARY ON PSALM 116 "Alleluia." Though there are only two verses, the full glory of a heading is assigned to them, so that we may realise that however few the words uttered in the Lord's praises, they are always as full as can be. None can doubt that the source of praise of heavenly splendour must not be labelled insignificant. Appropriately joined to it is the figure called in Greek hormos, for it preserves the continuity of the speech to the end with no change of spokesman or theme, continuing with the one meaning from beginning to end.

Content of the Psalm

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Though this psalm does not allow of division because of the small number of verses, it transcends all others in the economy of its utterance. It is the prime particle of the psalms, exhibiting the distinction of the point from which the line grows and from which different types of figures are shaped in most learned diversity.

Explanation of the Psalm

"Praise the Lord, all ye nations, and praise him together, all ye people." We must associate this psalm too with the character of martyrs, for the holy men speak as though they have already completed their glorious suffering, saying that all nations must be roused to praise the Lord, for He bestowed on His servants such things as caused them to be inspired by His exemplary deeds. Where are the Donatists, who lyingly boast that the faith has been bestowed on their gathering alone? 2 That chorus of the saints cries out that all nations must praise the Lord; if only the Donatists even in our company would do what they lyingly claim to perform uniquely. Next comes: And praise him together, all ye people. Collective praise is that uttered in unison by all the faithful, and is seen to befit the Catholic Church assembled from different parts of the world. All nations in common are exhorted among the people so that none at the Lord's judgment may claim that they were not included." For his

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mercy is confirmed upon us, and the truth of the Lord remains forever." The reason is given why the Lord must be praised throughout the world: it is because He has fulfilled His promises made through the holy prophets by His coming to us. His mercy towards the Christian people is confirmed and will not be moved forever, for He who granted it, as we justly believe, protects us with His pity. He added: "And the truth of the Lord remains for ever." The truth of the Lord here means the Son; as He Himself says: I am the way, the truth and the life! In the view of the utterly mad Arian, there was a time- this is a sacrilege to utter-when the Son was not. That means that there would have been a time when the Father was without the Truth, the Way and the Life. But since we must believe that the Father was never without them, it befits our salvation and truth itself to confess the Son as coeternal and consubstantial with the Father through all things. In addition Scripture says: All things were made through him, and without him nothing was made. If time was created through the Son, how could time exist when its Creator was not? Absurdity always thus attends on base errors. They append a third falsehood: The Father is always predicated as anterior to the Son. Where is the relevant passage? "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God." You observe that there is no anterior order there. Indeed, in many places the Son is named first, as in the

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passage of Paul to the Ephesians: "Do you not know that no fornicator and unclean person has inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God?" And to the Galatians: "Paul an apostle, not by man nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father." And to the Thessalonians: "Our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father who has loved us." And the second letter to the Corinthians: "The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God." So that you would understand the equality of the whole Trinity, he added:" And the communication of the holy Spirit be with you all." We read also of the holy Spirit as Lord, and placed first. Paul says to the Thessalonians:"The Lord direct your hearts in the charity of God and the patience of Christ." The holy Spirit is being implored to guide the hearts of believers in both the love of God and the patience of Christ. So citation of one of the Trinity earlier or later will indicate no preference to the listener; human speech cannot express itself otherwise. In God we must reckon there is no disparity or diversity. We rightly believe that where there is one God, no lesser or greater can be found. Unity knows no number, equality allows no scale. As Scripture says: "Thou shalt not go up by steps to my altar."

Conclusion Drawn From the Psalm

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The tiny psalm is enclosed in the most capacious brevity. What more expansive sentiment can be spoken than that the Creator must be praised all over the world? This is a fertile brevity, a restricted abundance, the broadest of confines, narrows which have no boundary. What sweet and remarkable variation, now expressing saving thoughts in a few aphorisms, now relating great tidings in extended speech, so that weary mortals should not experience distaste in their very diligence; for the pleasant diversity gives them appetite. Perhaps the enquiry may be raised why this psalm contains only two verses whereas by contrast Psalm 118 is seen to be prolonged to 176 verses, and several others are shaped differently according to the nature of the themes. Perhaps this consideration is found to explain it: just as a harmony or beautiful melody of musical power makes a perfect song from different sounds and tones, so these psalms, now short, now of medium length, now very long form a single harmony with the most delightful sweetness. An alternative credible explanation is that they denote the Lord's future kingdom in which the saints' diverse merits shine according to the nature of their deeds, though the one blessedness and eternal sweetness is bestowed on all of them."

From The Oblatemaster's Desk

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The "Suscipe" that we say at our oblation is from the longest psalm 118 and today we have a monastic commentary from Cassiodorus ( whom we quoted 23 oblate letters ago, six years ago on psalm 94 in oblate letter number 3) a commentary on the shortest psalm number 116-- which comes into, is the meat in the sandwich of "THE "LITTLE OFFICE"(that is always an alternative "Divine Office" for hard pressed oblates whether hard pressed by time, age or illness--reminder, as follows:

V/ O GOD, COME TO MY AID.

R/ O LORD, MAKE HASTE TO HELP ME.

GLORY BE TO THE FATHER AND TO THE SON AND TO THE HOLY SPIRIT.

AS IT WAS IN THE BEGINNING, IS NOW AND EVER SHALL BE, WORLD

WITHOUT END. AMEN.

PSALM 116

O PRAISE THE LORD, ALL YOU NATIONS,

ACCLAIM HIM ALL YOU PEOPLES!

STRONG IS HIS LOVE FOR US;

HE IS FAITHFUL FOR EVER.

GLORY BE TO THE FATHER AND TO THE SON AND TO THE HOLY SPIRIT.

AS IT WAS IN THE BEGINNING, IS NOW AND EVER SHALL BE, WORLD

WITHOUT END. AMEN."

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If we read Cassiodorus' commentary (or any other commentary of the Fathers of the Church) we realize that such a small psalm prayed with the right intention is not insignificant. As St Benedict emphatically makes plain, following our Lord, it is not by our length that we are heard in our prayers but by our compunction and purity of heart. Nevertheless we still pray our Divine office if and as we are able and may the Lord bless us in all our efforts-- and the smallest visible performance may sometimes take the largest and sincerest effort.

Books and Media Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska--Divine Mercy in My Soul --'"I am sending you with My mercy to the people of the whole world. I do not want to punish mankind, but I desire to heal it, pressing it to my merciful heart. Jesus also tells her to record His message of mercy in a diary:"You are the secretary of My mercy. I have chosen you for that office in this life and the next."'What better way of preparing for the Year of Mercy called by Pope Francis about to begin than reading this diary of a Saint so dear to St John-Paul? ISBN number 976-1-59614-110-0 published by the Marian Press. Price new 20 Euros The “UK Oblates Team" have a website www.benedictine-oblates.net that often has very useful information and articles and advertises events.

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Our own website is www.Pluscardenabbey.org and it has a section "Oblates" which has all the oblate letters of Pluscarden for the last eighteen years or so-- the most recent- mid-2011 onwards are on the link which you click onto on the oblate part of the website where it says "HERE" or use this link valeofstandrew.blogspot Kristo Buase's new website: www.kristobuasemonastery.org sign up for its newsletter-- Br Martin is making his solemn profession on the 1st November 2015 I think.

Prayer Intentions. 

For our new Oblates Kevin Maximilian Shinkwin, now Lord Shinkwin! and Dr. Deirdre Benedict McGovern; new novice oblates David Muir and Siobhan Gilmour. Golden Jubilarian's:- priesthood -Fr. John Kirwan, John McKinlay-marriage. For Pat Carrigan's diaconal studies. For Deacon Peter Morris C.Ss R. being ordained priest at St Mary's Cathedral Aberdeen on the 26th October. For Abbot Anselm's and Bishop Hugh's intentions. For vocations to Pluscarden-- for Br Mina who is from Egypt a country of persecution and is a pre--postulant and all aspirants. St Mary's, Petersham and Kristo Buase. Br. Adrian and Br. Finbar, and Br. Timothy's health.

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Please pray for Br. Cyprian who is in his Silver Jubilee year of Profession

For Brothers Joseph( whose mother just had a stroke) and John who have come to us from Tien Phuoc priory in Vietnam for two years.

For the repose of the soul of Oblate Maurice Dufficy, and for his wife who has just had a stroke.

Please pray for our sick Oblates and their relatives & especially Oblates Fr. Bob Halshaw, Paul Costello and postulant Oblate Albert Paterson both cancer treatment. Mrs. Allie Brien, Mrs. Alice Sullivan who was 90 on the 21st August. Gitte Mackay and Maggie Barrett, Paul Miller, Margaret Rawcliffe, Mrs. Gertrude Corker’s two daughters, Bob Barr, Brian Milne, Gail Schmitz continued improvement, Fiona Sellar, Martin's wife Mary, Graham Dunbar, Alison Donald, Beth Fraser and her husband Chris, Bob Clark, Nick MaCrae’s son, Martin MaCrae battling illness, Dr. David Paterson and his wife Angela, Jacqui’s daughter Sally, Hester, Poppy Sinclair, Ian and Frederick Brodie--the twins, for Pat Foster poorly, Eddy Sands, Johan Baillie, James and Helen Timoney both very ill and Pat Foster also very ill, Carolyn and Marshall Boardman and especially their son Malcolm, Martin Farrelly and especially for his wife Val(anyone got any news of them?), David Braine, Susan Stephen, Evelyn needs prayers for illness, Violet, Sheila and all friends of the Abbey

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and for all oblates, and all the sick, and those who care for them--and for Josaphat our sponsored seminarian.

Events

 

  •  Mass of Re-dedication of the Abbey Church here this November 5th 2015 at 11.00 am followed by buffet lunch (sorry accommodation full up).
  •  
  • 21st November Presentation of Our Lady---renewal of oblation after Mass at the Abbey, preceded by a talk by Fr. Benedict.
  •  
  •  Oblate Retreat here at Pluscarden--NB Change of time SECOND weekend of Lent February 2015 led by Fr. Abbot, our Abbot Anselm, as before, a great success-- thank you Fr. Abbot! Do mark it in your diary for the SECOND Weekend of the Second Sunday of Lent for 2016. (The change is because of Fr. Dunstan's Silver Jubilee!)--if staying arrange with the guestmaster, Fr. Bede, please.

Page 11 of 12

 

•St Mungo’s Chapter Glasgow. As announced. Peter Aitken 11, Maxwell Grove, Glasgow. G41 5JP. Phone: 0141 4272084. Numbers have been steadily increasing.

•St Margaret’s Chapter, Dunfermline as announced. Contact Pat Carrigan smcb_oblates@live.co.uk

 

•St. Monica’s Chapter, Thurso. Contact Jane Coll. "Scaraben”, Westside, Dunnet, Thurso, Caithness, KY14 8YD. Phone 01847 851467 as announced.

 

ST.PETER'S CHAPTER OF OBLATES-restored: Aberdeen-- GOOD NEWS --MEETINGS WILL START AGAIN ON NOVEMBER THE FIRST WEDNESDAY(4th November) IN ST.PETER'S church parish ROOM BETWEEN 5PM AND 6PM AND WILL MEET EVERY MONTH AFTER THAT UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE AND IT WILL BE "ST.PETER'S CHAPTER". AS I AM INTO CHURCH ON WEDNESDAY'S PREPARING THE BULLETIN ANYWAY ---Brian---- MY CONTACT DETAILS WILL BE e-mail brianbmilne2647@gmail.com that's my personal e-mail address my tel no 01224 485781 mobile no 07443032289 ----- from Brian Milne

 

•New Chapter—St.Mirin’s Chapter. Date: 1st Saturday each month. Time 2-4 pm. Venue: Hall 2, St Mirin’s Cathedral, Cathedral Precincts, Incle Street Paisley, PA1 1HR—secure parking there within Cathedral enclosure. Farther information: St Mirin Chapter, Benedictine Oblate Group, c/o Campbell Murdoch, Fircroft, Knockbuckle Road, Kilmacolm, PA13 4JT m: 07810 350006

 

UGANDAN SEMINARIAN NEW UPDATE 

The Pluscarden Oblates continue to support Josaphat our 22 year old

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Seminarian. He is about to begin MAJOR SEMINARY with your help. Letter follows from Paul Costello:-

"Dear Sponsors,

I am writing to you all, after informing Fr. Martin, of the position I find myself in. I have recently been diagnosed with a Melanoma Cancer on the lung. As the future is unclear I feel unable to continue with the organisation of the sponsorship. I am therefore asking for someone to take up this important task.

In addition, as the cost of Josaphat’s education has increased now that he is in the Major Seminary, there is a real need to attract more sponsors.

Please keep me in your prayers.

Yours in Christ,

Paul."

Paul Costello, 4, Commercial Road, Ellon, Aberdeenshire AB41 9BD Tel:- 01358-721512 Mobile:- 07762-432080

As the Year of Mercy approaches may the Lord grant that we may all even now take up the tools of Good Works "and never to despair of the mercy of God" RB ch. 4

 

May God bless you all!

 

                                             Fr. Martin            PAX