'Breakfast with Benedict' teaches about the Rule of St. Benedict
BELMONT — To hear a lecture while dining is nothing new in the Benedictine tradition.
"Reading will always accompany the meals of the brothers," says St. Benedict in his Rule. "The reader should not be the one who just happens to pick up the book, but ... brothers will read and sing, not according to their rank, but according to their ability to benefit their hearers."
In a series of five breakfasts throughout the academic year, "Breakfast with Benedict" has provided this same opportunity to students, staff, coaches, faculty and monks of Belmont Abbey College in Belmont.
Pictured: Dr. Lucas Lamadrid, dean of students, gave the last in a series of breakfast lectures this academic year at Belmont Abbey College. "Breakfast with Benedict" enabled students, staff, coaches, faculty and monks of Belmont Abbey College in Belmont to gather and learn more about a particular topic of faith, in the Benedictine tradition. (Mary B. Worthington | Catholic News Herald)
Organized by Patrick Ford, director of Catholic Student Leadership and Formation, the final breakfast April 18 featured Dean of Students Dr. Lucas Lamadrid talking about the Benedictine hallmark of humility, explained in chapter 7 of the Rule.
"We all want to be CEOs of our own lives," Lamadrid said, "but really, we have very little control. There is a freedom in handing over to God. Knowing that you are not the measure of all things, that you have a place before God, is the first step to humility – the first step to wisdom."
That place before God, Lamadrid explained, applies to all created things, not just humans. Illustrating his point through a diagram of the hierarchy of beings, Lamadrid placed God on the top rung with the distance of infinity before angels on the second rung, followed by man on the third, and with the lesser beings such as "Harvey the Platypus, celery, and pond scum."
"What really stood out to me was the analogy," said Jordan Spinharney, a FOCUS team member. "I never heard it described in that way – that we are not compared with other humans, but with God, who is infinitely greater than us."
Sophomore elementary education student and cross country runner Tim Gill appreciated the ongoing opportunity to learn more about St. Benedict and the Rule.
"Since Breakfast with Benedict is in the morning... there is one Christ-related phrase or thought that resonates in my mind throughout the rest of that day," said Gill, showing that the lecture during a meal was truly "beneficial to the hearers" as St. Benedict himself desired.
— Mary B. Worthington, Correspondent
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