Holy Rule 8 – of Divine Office during the NIght

With the vast majority of the credit going to emergents, new monasticism is very sexy right now. However, this does not seem to be a case of bringing sexy back – monasticism was never meant to be this sexy.

Chapter 8 of St. Benedict’s rule gives direction for the nighttime and daybreak observances of the daily office. The times differ according to season, because of the amount of sunlight received during the different seasons, for the Holy Rule was established before the discovery of electricity.

And just in case you still think monasticism is sexy, chapter 8 directs that during the summer, the monks are to observe Matins at night, then they “may go out for the necessities of nature” before returning to participate in Lauds. For we all know a monk really needs to go first thing every morning.


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