Communio Internationalis Benedictinarum

Saturday 13 September: Fourth Day of the Symposium

Saturday 13 September
Fourth Day of the Symposium

The main language of our liturgy today today was Italian, None was led by the African sisters.

Morning Session

The morning session began with Terce, followed by introductions by Sr Judith Ann.
M Angela Strobei then introduced Sister Aquinata Böckmann.

Sister Aquinata Böckmann

introducing Sister Aquinata

introducing Sister Aquinata

Listen with the Ear of your Heart

After the break, which included more treats from Germany, our facilitators go into action, getting Sr Judith Ann to give a prize, a gift from Poland, to the sister who remembered and recited the names of 15 people yesterday, then it’s let’s wake up by singing Moshi, Moshi! and introducing ourselves to each other then . . . any brave soul who will come forward and tell us 20 names? A gift provided by our Polish sisters to Jill from the USA who manages to remember 20 names, next time 30 names and the person will get the box ‘because there are no more contents’— but in the event our Polish sisters find another item for a prize.

Then something for our theme of ‘Obsculta’: we sing ‘Cha La La Listen!’

Listen to Cha La La Listen!

Cha La La Listen!

Young Sisters’ Presentation

The Young Sisters then presented a role play of two scenarios of sisters who inappropriately communicate with their superiors by electronic means, they then invite us to join with them in a dance.

Listen to the Young Sisters:–

Young Sisters

Photos of the Young Sisters (Flickr)

Our facilitators then asked us to write down the names of three people who have listened to us intently, willingly and carefully.

Afternoon Session

At None, the African sisters lead us in prayer, which began with ‘Obsculta’ in Zulu.

Listen to None:–


Sister Aquinata

We then listened, intently, willingly and carefully, to the second part of Sister Aquinata’s conference.

Listen with the Ear of your Heart

After the conference our facilitators invited us to take part in a ‘Message Relay’ . . .

Message Relay — Listening Through The Holy Rule

5:00 – 5:40 p.m.

  1. M. Araceli and Sr. Lumen will relay two passages from the Prologue of the Holy Rule to all participants at the front tables.
  2. M. Araceli will take care of the tables on the right side while Sr. Lumen takes care of the tables on the left side.
  3. All participants will listen carefully and then will choose one in the group who can best relay these two passages to the next table.
  4. This goes on until the last right and left tables.
  5. The two passages that were relayed to the very last two tables will be shown on the screen.
  6. Afterwards, the original passages will be shown.

Points for discussion:

  1. Describe briefly the listening process that went on.
  2. Benedict was right, when he asked ‘what can be sweeter than the voice of the Lord?’ Sr. Aquinata gave the example of Moses in the burning bush. Moses was not able to express in words and explain the depth of God’s presence. He just listened silently. In your whole religious life has there been any experience closer to that of Moses when the incident did not require words but only an in-depth listening? Choose a partner at your table and relate that experience.

Mother Madeleine

Mother Madeleine, a clinical therapist who has made a study in how the ear is connected to the heart then spoke to us about her study.

Listen to M Madeleine (Français)

M Madeleine (Français)

This was followed by discussion in twos or threes on one of the following topics: the Message Relay, one of the names we had written or the message the Young Sisters wanted to bring across. There was some amusement at the results of the Message Relay. We then had our Open Forum with Sr Aquinata.

Vespers in Italian, followed by supper—a chance to enjoy some Italian cuisine.