07 August – Daily Reading of the Rule of St. Benedict

 osb
April 7, August 7, December 7

Chapter 55: On the Clothes and Shoes of the Brethren

Let clothing be given to the brethren 
according to the nature of the place in which they dwell
 
and its climate;
 
for in cold regions more will be needed,
 
and in warm regions less.
 
This is to be taken into consideration, therefore, by the Abbot.

We believe, however, that in ordinary places 
the following dress is sufficient for each monk:
 
a tunic,
 
a cowl (thick and woolly for winter, thin or worn for summer),
 
a scapular for work,
stockings and shoes to cover the feet.

The monks should not complain 
about the color or the coarseness of any of these things,
 
but be content with what can be found
 
in the district where they live and
 
can be purchased cheaply.

The Abbot shall see to the size of the garments, 
that they be not too short for those who wear them,
 
but of the proper fit.

Let those who receive new clothes 
always give back the old ones at once,
 
to be put away in the wardrobe for the poor.
 
For it is sufficient if a monk has two tunics and two cowls,
 
to allow for night wear and for the washing of these garments;
 
more than that is superfluity and should be taken away.
 
Let them return their stockings also and anything else that is old
 
when they receive new ones.

Those who are sent on a journey 
shall receive drawers from the wardrobe,
 
which they shall wash and restore on their return.
 
And let their cowls and tunics be somewhat better
 
than what they usually wear.
 
These they shall receive from the wardrobe
 
when they set out on a journey,
 
and restore when they return.

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