Monday, January 05, 2009

Father Damien's Rule of Life

Fr. Damien's Grave
Fr. Damien's Grave, Kalawao
Photo by Esther

Fr. Damien's Grave Kalawao
Brother Joseph Dutton's Grave - Kalawao
Photo by Esther

Today I finished reading the book I picked up during our pilgrimage to Kalaupapa and Kalawao. The book is Damien and Dutton, Two Josephs on Molokai by the late Howard E. Crouch. I found the book to be extremely interesting especially due to the fact that I was personally familiar with many of the places mentioned in the book. Some of the names also started to be put in context because for example, I have visited their burial places. It brought be even closer to Father Damien and my love and admiration for him has grown even more, if that is possible.

I would like to share with you Father Damien's Rule of Life, from the book that published by the Damien-Dutton Leprosy Society
Father Damien's Rule of Life
September 3, 1879

5 a.m. Rise and go to the Church as soon as possible. Morning prayers, Adoration and Meditation.

6:30 Mass and instruction. Thanksgiving until quarter to eight.

7:45 Take care of various matters for the good of the faithful.

8:00 Breakfast followed by a short recreation and domestic affairs.

9:00 Small hours (on the porch).

9:30 Spiritual reading followed by study and correspondence until noon.

12:00 Dinner.
After dinner visit the sick and the Christians in general in such a way that each week I may know all that goes on in each house in my district.
If I can return by 5 0'clock, say vespers and occupy myself with domestic affairs.

6:00 Supper.
When twilight sets in, Rosary, Breviary, Night Prayers.

9-10 Retire.


Ann Murray said...

What lovely, simple yet profound rules these are - and the wise one is of course the unwritten one that says early to bed, early to rise.

To read these is to share in the spirituality of Fr Damien, and appreciate even more the life he led and what he was driven by.

Thanks, Esther, for these rules and the photos too - all very touching.

Anonymous said...

I introduce myself: Fr. Emilio Vega-Garcia (Congregation of Sacred Hearts) for ten years General Postulator of the Cause of Blessed Damien in Rome (1997-2007)and following up the miracle of Blessed Damien in favor of Audrey Toguchi. Right now I'm in Texas, ministering Spanish, taking care of my health and trying to keep alive the devotion for Bl. Damien updating the news I get in Google Alerts for Bl. Damien in several pages as www.SAINTDAMIENOFMOLOKAI.ORG .COM and SAINTDAMIENDEVEUSTER.COM. I got some notes from you. Thanks for your devotion and affection about Damien. Count on my prayers too. Emilio

SQUELLY said...

I read about Father Damien a couple of months ago and had tears rolling down my cheeks. I had been told about him at school and was moved but reading about what an unusual and fantastic character he was- a rather different experience.

Thanks for this lovely post!

EC Gefroh said...

Ann, yes, early to bed and early to rise :-) I read in this a true humility and simplicity which I long to imitate.

Dear Father, thank you so much for taking the time to comment here. I am humbled by the fact that you would do so considering you are an expert on Fr. Damien. I have emailed you privately too.

Squelly, I have read that many people thought Father Damien to be a difficult man. The more I read about it, the more I wish I had known him personally. If he was difficult, I think he had the right to be considering all the obstacles he faced in trying to help flock when others would not.

Easter Almuena said...

Thank you, Esther! I hope to go one day myself... love to you!

Tracy said...

Wow, those are excellent!!

EC Gefroh said...

I hope so too Easter.

TY Tracy.