Fourth Sunday of Lent
March 14, 2021
Andrea Westkamp, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Virginia
Scholastica – Moving the Heavens
Saint Scholastica is in the center of our stained glass window. All we really know about her is from The Dialogues of St. Gregory of Nyssa who relates the story of the twins' meeting and spiritual sharing.
I found the following prayer in a prayer booklet of the Schuyler Benedictines:
"Loving mother, Scholastica,
with a woman's love and confidence in God,
you moved the heavens
with your tears
for the sake of love.
Teach me to live in love
and share generously
the gifts God has given to me.
Show me how to surrender
everything to God in full trust,
even my smallest hopes and desires.
Help me to grow in gentle patience.
May the trials of daily life
never take me away from the joy
of living in God's loving presence
Intercede for my loved ones.
May your prayers help them
to live in the Way of God
as did your prayers
for your brother, Benedict.
In Jesus we pray. Amen."
Prayers convey notions of their authors. They can give us some insights about the authors' Lectio on the life of Scholastica. For example, "...you moved the heavens with your tears for the sake of love."
In the Dialogues, Gregory tells us that Scholastica did not want the meeting with her brother to end. He, on the other hand, was ready to return to his monastery. Benedict told her that it was time to conclude their get-together. Scholastica; however, started praying. A rainstorm happened and it showed God's wish for Scholastica and Benedict to stay together for just a little while longer.
Scholastica was not arm-wrestling with her brother. The prayer indicates that she "moved the heavens." I am picturing her enjoying the exchange with her brother. There was still more to share and say. The expression of love between them was not all finished for that particular day. What a wonderful imagery that the heavens can be moved...as if part of God's creation was enjoying the sharing of the twins as well. The heavens were able to feel and convey what Benedict could not grasp himself! It was love that was communicated between Scholastica and Benedict. It was not all done yet. A heavenly intervention was needed to convey to Benedict that his sister needed a little more time with him. The heavens bought her that time.
This week, savor your time with friends.
Savor your prayer times.
Savor just "for the sake of love."
Scholastica can show you how!
Sister Andrea Westkamp is a member of Saint Benedict Monastery in Bristow, VA. Currently, she is serving as subprioress, canonical treasurer, oblate director and spiritual director. Her background is in pastoral counseling, spiritual direction and early childhood education. She enjoys long walks, artwork, reading mysteries. Her passion is exploring the depth of the Rule of Benedict for our times.