Tuesday, May 5, 2015

April 2015 Newsletter

Fr. Joseph Cox, OSB, will be the guest speaker at our Sunday, April 26 meeting.  His topic is Humor.
Please Note:  Because Sunday is also parish Confirmation Sunday, our meeting will be held in the SCHOOL CAFETERIA rather than the Parish Center.  It will begin, as usual, at 2:00 p.m.

Though this is our last chapter meeting until September, there are several other oblate events this summer beginning with the Day of Recollection for Ohio Oblates on Saturday, May 16, which will be held in Columbus this year.  Registration forms were emailed to those on our email list earlier in the week, and are enclosed for those who receive the newsletter via mail.  If there is anyone who would like to attend but is in need of help to cover the registration fee, please let me or Rosemary know. 

The Oblate Study Days at Saint Meinrad will be held June 15-18 and feature Br. John Mark Falkenhain, OSB, speaking on Oblation as a Vocation.

The Day of Recollection at Saint Meinrad will feature oblate Fr. Thomas D’Angelo from Bronx. NY.  His topic will be Oblation as a Vocation.

Oblate Steve Drees recently posted another interesting article on the Saint Meinrad blog, Echoes from the Bell Tower.  His article, “The March for Life—Up Close and Personal,” can be found at the following link:

 Oblate Anniversaries

Congratulations to the following oblates who are celebrating their anniversaries in April, May, June and July.

                    4/9      Kathy Gloeckner (12 yrs.)
                    4/9      Joan Hilton (6 yrs.)
                    4/28    Eric Kenny (2 yrs.)
                    4/28    Mark Caldwell-Reiss (2 yrs.)
                    5/8      Susan Anderson (53 yrs.)
                    5/18    Ron DeMarco (2 yrs.)
                    6/15    Steve Drees (4 yrs.)
                    6/15    Margaret Sherlock (4 yrs.)
                    6/17    Steve Bay (6 yrs.)
                    7/9      Rosemary Conrad (27 yrs.)
                    7/10    Henry Marksberry (18 yrs.)
                7/26        David Annabel (4 yrs.)       

March 2015 Meeting Minutes

Cincinnati Oblate Chapter Minutes
March 29, 2015

Attendance: Susan Anderson, Rosemary Conrad, John N. Campbell, Linda McCarroll, Nick McCarroll, Ron Lillie, Karin Mendoza, Clyde Dorn, Pat Dorn, Linda Faulhaber, Eric Kenny, Marianna Neal, Kathy Gloeckner, Peyton Reed, Mary Louise Reed, Stephen Drees.

Our meeting opened with the reading of the Mission Statement and introductions.  Second Sunday Vespers of Week Two was prayed/chanted together.  Lectio Divina was shared together using John 12:12-16.

The minutes of the February 22 meeting were approved after the correction of John Campbell that he is 90 and not 91.  Nick McCarroll states that our chapter balance at the beginning of this meeting is again $40.00 after generous donations at the last meeting.

Old/New Business:  Rosemary Conrad stated that the monks are moved out of the monastery during needed renovations.  The date of our next chapter meeting is April 26 in the St. Gertrude  School cafeteria and Fr. Joseph is the speaker.  The annual Day of Reflection is May 16, 2015 in Columbus.

Program:  Video Conference:  Fr. Harry Hagen, OSB

Conference #1: Praying the Psalms reviews the Psalms as a way of remembering and as a window or a mirror of other people’s prayers.

Remembering helps us to be able to connect all of Scripture as the Psalms distill all of Scripture.  An example is Psalm 113 of Israel in Egypt from Numbers 17,20.  As we pray, remembrance of Israelite history opens us to be larger persons instead of only remembering self which is narrow. 

Psalm 136 gives us a window into past experience of pain/suffering of the Israelites in Babylon and helps us become more empathetic.  Psalm 129 is ambiguous as it can be a window or a mirror into forgiveness .  Psalm 129 begins with cries to the Lord from the self but transitions in verse 5 to community hope in the Lord who redeems Israel.
Our meeting ended with praying the Our Father and shared social time.

Submitted by Susan Anderson

March 2015 Newsletter

We had a nice meeting and decent turnout last month in spite of the bad weather and icy roads that prevented theattendance of many of our oblates. Br. Luke Waugh gave a talk on “Tools for Good Works,” and Ron DeMarco gives a summery of it in the enclosed minutes of the meeting.

The March meeting will be held on Sunday, March 29, at 2:00 p.m. in the St. Joseph Room of the St. Gertrude Parish Center.

We will begin a new DVD conference this month. Oblates will recall that last November, Fr. Meinrad sent each of you—along with your Renewal of Oblation card—a DVD and book of handouts from the “Praying and Singing the Psalms” a dual conference given at Saint Meinrad last summer by Fr. Harry Hagan and Fr. Jeremy King for Chapter Coordinators and delegates (please refer to the copy of Fr. Meinrad’s letter enclosed for details). At this meeting, we will begin with Conference #1 of Fr. Harry Hagan’s “Praying the Psalms” conference. PLEASE BRING EITHER THE ENCLOSED SHEETS OF THIS CONFERENCE or YOUR “PRAYING AND SINGING THE PSALMS” BOOK WITH YOU TO THE MEETING.

Karen Mendoza was invested as an oblate novice by Br.

Luke Waugh, OSB, at the February meeting. Congratulations and welcome aboard, Karen!

REMINDER: On Saturday, March 21, we celebrate one of the two feast days honoring St. Benedict—the Passing of Blessed Father Benedict. (The second—Our Blessed Father Benedict—is held on July 11.) Oblates have an opportunity to earn a Plenary Indulgence on these days by fulfilling the following conditions:

1) Confession,
2) Receiving Holy Communion, and
3) Praying for the intentions of the Holy Father.

In addition, oblates should renew, at least privately, their promise to faithfully observe promise of their way of life.

February 2015 Meeting Minutes

Cincinnati Oblate Chapter Minutes February 22, 2015

Attendance: John N. Campbell, Linda McCarroll, Nick McCarroll, Clyde Dom, Kathy Gloeckner, Pat Dom, Mary Louise Reed, Peyton Reed, Mary Holton, Ron DeMarco, Karin Mendoza, Ann Spaeth, Dave Spaeth, Eric Kenny, Barb Hanlon, Br. Luke Waugh, OSB

Our meeting opened with introductions and reading of the Mission Statement. Sunday Second Vespers of Week Three were prayed/chanted together. Lectio Divina was cancelled because icy roads prevented Rosemary Conrad from making it to the meeting with the copies of the Sunday Gospel.

Treasurer’s Report

Nick McCarroll reported our chapter balance at the beginning of today’s meeting is $40. Br. Luke Waugh, OSB, will receive $75 for his much welcomed trip to see us today to be our speaker. This left us a -$35.00 balance.

Old/New Business

Our January 25, 2015 minutes were approved. We congratulated John Campbell on his 91st birthday, and for his 71 years as a Benedictine Oblate! There will be an oblate retreat in March. Br. Luke Waugh, OSB investited Karin Mendoza as a Benedictine Oblate Novice, and we congratulate Karin and welcome her into our chapter.

The date of our next chapter meeting is March 29, 2015, in the parish center at St. Gertrude.Br. Luke Waugh, OSB, was our guest speaker. Brother Luke gave a talk on the "Tools for Good Works." He began by reading from the Rule of Saint Benedict, chapter 4, verses 41 through 74. He told us that the reading here is very appropriate for Lent—particularly the examination of conscience that we should be doing regularly, along with the Sacrament of Reconciliation. He pointed out that St. Meinrad's wants priests who one can go to as a good confessor. And to be a good confessor, you must also be able to give a good confession. In talking about the tools, Br. Luke gave an example of a friend he had growing up. The friend's father was a master craftsman who depended on tools that are continually being examined and taken care of, like his saws that are always kept sharp and dings repaired. The father said,

"Take care of your tools and they will take care of you."

Our tools this season of Lent cause us to pay attention to the deep examination of conscience, of our
soul, to sharpen the teeth on the tool of our soul to be all we can be for God. St. Benedict tells us we
need the examination of conscience to proceed on the path of holiness. Brother Luke lives with ninety other monks at St. Meinrad's. As in any family, he may be annoyed at times from an inadvertent action by another monk. To deal with this Br. Luke goes to the examination of conscience and prays for understanding and patience. Br. Luke knows that he cannot judge the motivation of the other monk's action so he prays that the next time he will not let the annoying action make him angry again. We all need to regularly do a deep examination of conscience, and participate in the Sacrament of Reconciliation, for we all need to hear, “Your sins are forgiven."

During the discussion period after the presentation, Brother Luke also discussed how men and women see things differently. As an example of this, Br. Luke suggested to go to the website below and watch the video. It’s a good one!


Thank you Br. Luke!

Submitted by Ron DeMarco

February 2015 Newsletter

Happy Ash Wednesday!

My apologies to those on our mailing list who are receiving this information late due to the breakdown of my computer.  Hopefully, you will receive it well before the meeing.

Our February meeting will be held in the St. Joseph room of the St. Gertrude Parish Center at 2:00 p.m. next Sunday, February 22.  Br. Luke Waugh, OSB, will be the special guest speaker for this meeting.  His talk is entitled Living in the Presence of God.  The weather forecast for Sunday is sounding iffy, so please pray for good weather!

Congratulations to the following people who have celebrated or will be celebrating the anniversary of their oblation (January-March):  John Campbell (01/01) – 71 yrs.; Ron Beathard (02/22) – 11 yrs.; Scott Alt (02/23) – 1 year; Tom Dwyer (02/27) – 14 yrs.; Jo Ann Moeller (02/27) – 56 yrs.; Deacon Steve Durkee (2/28) – 18 yrs.; Cindy Neuhaus (3/10) – 8 yrs.; and Ron & Donna Clark (3/21) – 4 yrs.

Congratulations also to Ron DeMarco who was recently appointed by our oblate director Fr. Meinrad Brune, OSB, to the Saint Meinrad Oblate Council! 

January 2015 Meeting Minutes

Cincinnati Oblate Chapter Minutes January 25, 2015

Attendance: John N. Campbell, Linda Mccarroll, Nick Mccarroll, Clyde Dom, Jo Ann Heming, Kathy Gloeckner, Pat Dom, Linda Faulhaber, Mary Louise Reed, Peyton Reed, Nancy Barnes, Fred Otto, Rosemary Conrad, Ursula Hassel, Margaret Sherlock, James Sherlock, Susan Anderson.

Our meeting opened with introductions and reading of the Mission Statement. Sunday Second Vespers of Week Three were prayed/chanted together.  Sunday’s Gospel Matthew 25:31-46 was used for Lectio Divina.

Our Nov. 23 minutes were approved with the corrected last paragraph from Bro. Frances about the Abbey windows that is located after the January 25 minutes.

Nick McCarroll reported our chapter balance as $13.00 after mailings and purchase of Liturgy of the Hours books for guest use.

Pat Dorn plans to contact members about an updated member communication list.       We congratulate Peyton and Mary Louise Reed on their final oblations at St Meinrad on December 13, 2014.   Laurie Wallhauser continues to make healing progress  with in-home  and out- patient therapy  with her husband  Chris' support.  Ron DeMarco is healing at home from carpel tunnel surgery.

Video Conference 7/8 Overview of Selections from the Holy Rule:

We completed Father Harry Hagan's retreat conference series on St. Benedict 's Rule today.  Chapters 1-7 give the theological basis of the Rule.  Chapters 8-20 give St. Benedict 's structure for the Liturgy of the Hours. We are reminded that as Benedictines our prayer is the work of God done for God but God also works on us through prayer to develop a new shape for us. We pray inside and outside with the cosmos as the world turns and we unite our minds and hearts together.

Chapter 34 warns against murmuring and complaining because this brings dampness and rust to the community morale. Chapter 53 reminds that reception of guests brings the world to the monastery so that different cultures can add to ferment to keep the monastery open to the world and not enclosed on itself.

Conference 8 on Chapter 72 is basically a summary of the "Rule in the Rule." Lines 4-8 in Father Harry's translation focus on Love and the orientation toward other persons and away from self. We need to be obedient to the Abbot, to one another, and to ourselves. 72: 11 reads "Let them prefer absolutely nothing to Christ" and is followed by 72:12 "and may he lead us all together to everlasting life." The Benedictine idea is that eternal life has begun here as we follow the Benedictine way of life given to us in the Rule. Fr. Harry closed with a commentary from St. Cyprian on the Lord's Prayer from which St. Benedict drew the line, "Let them prefer nothing whatever to  Christ."

Our meeting closed with praying the Our Father together and with shared social time.

Submitted by Susan Anderson

Correction to November 23 Minutes: 

I have to add one last comment that Br. Francis said which to me really hits home about during our day of praying the Office with the monks of St. Meinrad. At the monastery during the reciting of the Divine Office, there are choir stalls of monks who alternate the singing of verses of the psalms. As this is happening, Br. Francis looks up and sees in the center of the rose window above the Prior’s side of choir stalls is a hand signifying God the Father. In the center of the rose window above the Abbot’s side of choir stalls is Christ. And in the center of the rose window above the main entrance to the church is a dove signifying the Holy Spirit. So, the way everything is laid out, you have God the Father and God the Son conversing back and forth with one another (choir stall to choir stall), with the Holy Spirit running down the center of the church and in between the choir stalls. All of it together forms a cruciform design. When we place ourselves in that configuration (as monks or as guests), we participate in the Triune God’s holy conversation as one voice on behalf of the entire world. What a beautiful description by Br. Francis, and I believe that when we pray from home, we too add our voices in prayer in unison with those of the monks and guests, all as one.

Thank you Br. Francis!

Submitted by Ron DeMarco

November 2014 Meeting Minutes

The Cincinnati Chapter of Benedictine Oblates of St. Meinrad Archabbey
Meeting Minutes, November 23, 2014

Attendance of oblates and guests:
Rosemary Conrad, Pat Dorn, Clyde Dorn, Ursula Hassel, Kathy Gloeckner, Nick McCarroll, Linda McCarroll, Ron DeMarco, Linda Faulhaber, Karin Mendoza, Mary Louise Reed, Peyton Reed, Margaret Sherlock, Stephen Drees, Kim Palacio, Ron Lillie, Sr. Betty Jane Lillie, SC, Eric Kenny, Shelly Pharo, Barb Hanlon, Tim Grant, Br. Francis de Sales Wagner, OSB.

The meeting was opened by Rosemary Conrad with the reading of the Mission Statement and introductions. Second Vespers were prayed using The Liturgy of the Hours for Benedictine Oblates.
Our Lectio Divina was based on Sunday's Gospel (Matthew 25: 31-46).

Treasurer’s Report:
Nick McCarroll reported that after a meeting minutes mailings cost of $36.75 we have a balance of $117.00 in our treasury. We will give $75.00 to Br. Francis de Sales Wagner, OSB, today for his much welcomed trip to see us and be our speaker today.

Old/New Business
The minutes were approved from our last regular meeting held on October 26, 2014.

Ron Lillie made his final oblation as an oblate of Saint Meinrad Archabbey.  Br. Francis DeSales, OSB, accepted Ron’s oblation on behalf of oblate director Fr. Meinrad Brune.

Laurie Wallhauser is reported to be progressing in her healing, with improved ability to articulate her speech in conversation. We keep her in our prayers.

Peyton Reed mentioned that he has discs of psalm tones for those who wish to hear them and practice for our singing of psalms during our meetings.

Br. Francis de Sales Wagner, OSB, was our guest speaker. His presentation was on "Being with God in Prayer." Br. Francis began by first talking about God's presence within us emphasizing that His presence is key to our life as oblates: “When I was told that the general theme for this year's oblate conference was 'The Presence of God in the Life of the Oblate.' I thought to myself: the presence of God IS the life of the oblate. Our lives as human beings-- whether or not we're aware of it or acknowledge it-- are intimately bound together within the presence of God. Our mere existence is a manifestation of the divine presence, since it is God who creates all things, and gives life to all being."

After citing many references in scripture and the Rule supporting God's presence with us and that God's divine presence is everywhere, Br. Francis went on to show how prayer is the principal means by which we are invited to immerse ourselves in this Divine Presence. It begins with God calling us first. “In prayer, the faithful God's initiative of love always comes first; our own first step is always a response (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2567)." Prayer is God's invitation to dedicate our time and being to a fuller appreciation of the divine so that our vision broadens and our hearts expand through Love. In prayer, we listen for the invitation, for that "tiny whispering sound" in our hearts that draws us toward God.

And as Benedictines, Br. Francis reminds us that the form of prayer that is dear to our hearts is the regular praying of the psalms--commonly referred to as the Liturgy of the Hours or the Divine Office. Here, Christ is truly present as Jesus tells us "Where two or three are gathered, there I am among them. Together, animated by the Holy Spirit, our voices become one with Christ's in praying to God the Father on behalf of the church and the world. Br. Francis makes a point that whether we are praying together or alone, we pray in Spirit with Christ, in one voice, and as Christ, to God the Father for the salvation of all! He then quoted Trappist monk and writer Thomas Merton who had beautiful things to say on this subject: We all have our problems and troubles, and yet we all sing (psalms) together: 'O God hear my cry, hearken to my prayer. ...Our vision goes out to embrace the whole Mystical Body, in all its scattered members in every part of the world. Where ever they may be, we are with them, because we are all One in Christ. Wherever two or three are gathered in His name, Christ, in the midst of them, imparts to them his identity. He becomes the 'I' who sings and prays and praises in us all."  

I have to add one last comment that Br. Francis said which, to me, really hits home about during our day our praying the Office with the monks of St. Meinrad. At the monastery during the reciting of the Divine Office, there are two opposing choirs of monks who alternate the singing of verses of the psalms. As this is happening, Br. Francis looks up and sees on one side of the church the painting of Christ, on another wall, the Holy Spirit, and on another God the Father. It is a true vision of the Holy Trinity conversing with each other in prayer, with the monks singing, and with us at home praying the same psalms, we all partake of this glorious feast to become One with the Trinity, One voice! 

Thank you Br. Francis!

Submitted by Ron DeMarco

January 2015 Newsletter

Hope everyone had a very blessed Christmas and is enjoying our milder-than-normal winter as much as we are—although, I admit, I am already looking forward to spring!

The January meeting will be held on Sunday, January 25 in the parish center at St. Gertrude in Madeira.  The agenda and program information may be found below.  The Minutes of the November 23, 2014 meeting and informational sheet for Fr. Harry Hagen’s video conference are enclosed.

Our congratulations to Ron Lillie, who made his final oblation at our November 23rd  meeting, and to Mary Louise & Peyton Reed, who made their final oblations on December 13 at Saint Meinrad during the December Oblate Retreat.  We are pleased and blessed to have them as members of our Cincinnati chapter.

Br. Francis DeSales Wagner  with Ron Lillie.

Peyton & Mary Louise Reed with Fr. Meinrad Brune at Saint Meinrad

Peyton & Mary Louise Reed with Fr. Meinrad Brune at Saint Meinrad
MARK YOUR CALENDAR: The Ohio Day of Recollection will be  sponsor-ed by the Columbus chapter this year and held in Columbus on May 16.