Thursday, 22 April 2021

22 April, The Holy Rule of St Benedict, Father of Western Monks

CHAPTER LXV. Of the Prior of the Monastery

22 Apr. 22 Aug. 22 Dec.

It happeneth very often that by the appointment of the Prior grave scandals arise in Monasteries; since there are some who, puffed up by the evil spirit of pride, and deeming themselves to be second Abbots, take upon themselves to tyrannise over others, and so foster scandals and cause dissensions in the community: especially in those places where the Prior is appointed by the same priest, or the same Abbots as appoint the Abbot himself. How foolish this is may easily be seen; for from the moment of his appointment an incentive to pride is given to him, the thought suggesting itself that he is freed from the authority of his Abbot, since he hath been appointed by the very same persons. Hence are stirred up envy, quarrels, backbiting, dissensions, jealousy and disorders. And while the Abbot and Prior are at variance with one another, it must needs be that their own souls are endangered by reason of their disagreement; and those who are their subjects, while favouring one side or the other, run to destruction. The evil of this peril falleth on the heads of those who by their action have been the cause of such disorders.

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