St Scholastica

28 Feb

In advance of 10 February, which is the designated Feast for St. Scholastica on the Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Anglican and many Lutheran liturgical calendars, Joan Chittister has posted another annual meditation on this great Saint, whom Sister Joan calls a “woman of God.”

Question for discussion:
What does this account of Scholastica tell us not only about this woman of God, but also every “woman of God?”

St. Scholastica, like her brother St. Benedict of Nursia, “…dedicated her life to the pursuit of God. She, too, founded monasteries and became an abbatial figure. The only story we have of Scholastica is told when Benedict was already an abbot of renown. The incident demonstrates clearly that the brother and sister were emotionally close and a spiritual influence on each other till the time of her death.”

“During one of their annual visits, Scholastica, inspired by the depth of their conversation, asked Benedict to remain overnight in the place where they were meeting in order to continue their talk and reflection on spiritual things. Benedict wouldn’t even think of it. It was getting dark; it was time to get back to the monastery; it was time to get on with the regular routine of the spiritual life. Unable to persuade him with words, Scholastica put her head down on the table in deep prayer. Suddenly, out of nowhere, a great storm brought with it flash floods and Benedict realized that he could not possibly return to the monastery that night. And the Dialogues say, “he complained bitterly.” He said, “God forgive you, sister! What have you done?” Scholastica answered simply, “I asked you for a favor and your refused. I asked my God and I got it.” (via Ioannis Edward Freeman)

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