A Handbook for Benedictine Oblates
The Nebraska Chapters of the Benedictine Oblates affiliated with Sacred Heart Monastery, Yankton, South Dakota, have developed a Formation Handbook for use in the initial formation of Novices and the ongoing formation of Oblates. The purpose of the Handbook is multifold:
- to lay out in specific and clear terms the criteria and procedures necessary for becoming a Benedictine Oblate;
- to establish a basic normative pattern of support available to on-going formation;
- to provide consistent and inclusive guidance to all Oblates on the charisms of Benedictine spirituality; and
- to provide an affirmation that though each Oblate is responding to a unique call, each Oblate is doing so with the support of the total Oblate and Monastic community.
The Handbook has three main sections: initial and on-going formation, the Monastic Tradition, and the personal rule of life. The section on Monastic Tradition contains sections on St. Benedict and his Rule, the Early Monastic Tradition, the Place of Monasticism in the Modern World, the Liturgy of the Hours, Lectio Divina, Living in Community, Simplification of Life and Contemplative Availability. The Rule of Life section contains a definition of a Rule of Life and many practical suggestions for designing a personal rule of life.