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

 osb
April 20, August 20, December 20

Chapter 64: On Constituting an Abbess

In the constituting of an Abbess 
let this plan always be followed,
 
that the office be conferred on the one who is chosen
 
either by the whole community unanimously in the fear of God
 
or else by a part of the community, however small,
 
if its counsel is more wholesome.

Merit of life and wisdom of doctrine 
should determine the choice of the one to be constituted,
 
even if she be the last of the order of the community.

But if (which God forbid) 
the whole community should agree to choose a person
 
who will acquiesce in their vices,
 
and if those vices somehow become known to the Bishop
 
to whose diocese the place belongs,
 
or to the Abbots, Abbesses or the faithful of the vicinity,
 
let them prevent the success of this conspiracy of the wicked,
 
and set a worthy steward over the house of God.
 
They may be sure
 
that they will receive a good reward for this action
 
if they do it with a pure intention and out of zeal for God;
 
as, on the contrary, they will sin if they fail to do it.

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