3. Calling the Brothers for Counsel

Whenever the monastery needs to deal with any important matter, let the abbot assemble the whole community and tell them himself what is involved.

After hearing the brothers’ advice, let him think it over alone and then do what he judges more beneficial.

Now we have said that all are to be called for counsel because often the Lord reveals to the younger what is better. Therefore, the brothers should give counsel with all the deference of humility, and they should not presume to defend shamelessly the way that it seems to them. Rather, they should let the matter rest with the decision of the abbot so that all may obey what he has judged more advantageous. Yet, even as it is fitting for the disciple to obey the teacher, so also it is right for him to organize everything with foresight and justice.

In all things, therefore, let them all follow this Rule as their teacher, and let no one easily turn away from it. No one in the monastery should follow the will of his own heart; neither should anyone presume to oppose his abbot brazenly inside or outside the monastery. 10 If someone should presume to do so, let him be subject to the discipline of the Rule. 11 On the other hand, let the abbot himself do all things while fearing God and keeping the Rule and knowing that he must, without doubt, render to God, the most just Judge, an account of all his decisions.

12 If he needs to deal with matters of less importance for the benefit of the monastery, let him take counsel with the seniors only, 13 as it is written:

Do everything with counsel,
and afterward you will not regret it. (Sir 32:19)


Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License

The Rule of Benedict by Saint Meinrad Archabbey is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Share This Book