Abbeys and Priories:
The Rule of St. Augustine - Ordo Monasterii
- Before all else, dearest brothers, God should be loved, and then your neighbor, for these are the chief commandments which have been given to us.
- I shall describe how we should pray or recite the psalms: that is, for Matins, three psalms should be said, the sixty-second, the fifth, and the eighty-ninth. At Terce, one psalm should be said as far as its response, then two psalms recited antiphonally, a reading and the closing prayer; and so ought Sext and None to be said. But at Vespers say one psalm to its response, a reading and the closing prayer. At a suitable hour after Vespers, when all are seated, the lessons should be read; and after that there should be said the psalms customary before sleeping. The night prayers, during the months of November, December, January, and February, should consist of twelve antiphonal psalms, six psalms to their responses, and three lessons' in the months of March, April, September, and October, of ten antiphonal psalms, five to their responses, and three lessons' in the months of May, June, July, and August, of eight antiphonal psalms, four psalms to their responses, and two lessons.
- The brothers should work in the mornings until Sext. From Sext until None they should devote to reading and at None they should return the books. Then, after they have eaten, they should do their work, either in the garden or wherever it is needed, until the time for Vespers.
- No one should claim anything as his own, whether clothing or anything else. It is our choice to live the Apostolic life.
- No one should do anything grudgingly, lest he perish as God condemned grumblers to do.
- They should be loyally obedient; they should honor their "father" next to God; they should treat their "provost" with deference, as is fitting to the saints.
- While they are seated at table, let them keep silence and listen to what is being read. But if something is needed, let their provost look after it. On Saturdays and Sundays, let those who wish for it receive wine, as is the custom.
- If something is needed for the monastery and they must be sent out of doors, let them go two by two. No one must eat or drink outside the monastery without permission, for this is contrary to the monastery's discipline. If brothers are sent out to sell the monastery's produce, they should take care that nothing is done against the rules, realizing that if they offend God's servants they offend Him. And if they must buy something the monastery needs, let them act carefully and loyally, as servants of God.
- Let there be no idle words among them. From early morning on, let them sit at their work. After the prayers at Terce, let them go back to their work. They should not stand about making up stories, unless it be for the profit of their souls. When they sit at their work, let them keep silence, unless what they are doing requires someone to speak.
- But if someone does not try with all his might and with the help of God's mercy to fulfill these orders, but rather despises them with a stubborn heart, let him be warned once, and a second time, and if he then does not improve, he should know that he is liable for fitting punishment from the monastery. If he is young enough for this, let him even be beaten.
- But when these things are faithfully and devoutly carried out in the name of Christ, not only will you prosper, but we shall rejoice greatly over your well-being. Amen.