Thursday, August 28, 2008

Monastic Lexicon #4

Opus Dei.

The Latin phrase, Opus Dei, came into the public vocabulary with the novel and follow-up movie, The DaVinci Code. In it, the term referred to a conservative, radical branch of the Church that served as one of the "bad guys" through an improbable albino monk who was following the heroes. There is an Opus Dei organization but it doesn't resemble the movie version.

For us, Opus Dei appears in the Rule of Benedict and refers to the Divine Office or the Hours of Prayer. We chant from our own office book, That God May Be Glorified, an inclusive language five-week psalter. It uses a variety of terms and names for God, and the pronouns are gender inclusive throughout.

Here is the full length east wall of windows of our adoration chapel. Three Benedictine crosses are at the top of each and the phrase, "Let nothing be preferred to the Work of God," is embedded in the stained glass.

Here is one
up close.