Three years ago today I made my final oblation as a Benedictine Oblate of St. Meinrad Archabbey. The memories are still vivid of offering myself to God through the monastic promises of stability, coversatio morum and obedience which all Benedictines make. Taking as my patron St. John Paul II, I promised to strive to live life a little differently then most, with the Rule of St. Benedict as my guide.
As I reflect upon this time within the Benedictine family I have to try and make an honest assessment as to the successes and failures which have come my way and how I must always continue to strive towards that which God has called me to be. This is no easy task but one that God calls us to make if we are true to our commitment to Him.
Something I have learned during this time is that striving to live out the promises we make as oblates is often a humbling experience. It is a call to look at the world through a different lens, to reorient ourselves with a long view of life and history and to strive to see life how God sees it. Many times I have failed at this endeavor but stability calls me to get back up and try again with God at my side.
I am not too sure as to why God asked me to go this route in life but I do know that I am blessed to be living it. I am not sure if I have come any closer to holiness but I do know that I want to try. I am not sure if I will ever make a difference in this world living out my vocation as an oblate but I hope that God in His goodness will see the effort I try to make and bring it to perfection in His own time. In the end I am simply grateful that He has willed that I try to come closer to Him, with the Rule as my guide, and a 1,500 year hearitage which has lead so many to holiness. May He be praised through it all!