Scholastica was the twin sister of Saint Benedict, the founder of Western monasticism, and she was the leader of a women’s community likely located near Benedict’s monastery at Monte Cassino. She was dedicated to God from a young age and made her intentions clear. What little is known about her life is found in Saint Gregory the Great’s book, the second Dialogue, which is an account of her brother’s miracles. She died about 543 and was buried in Benedict’s tomb, where he joined her in death soon after. She is the patron of nuns — especially Benedictines — and children with convulsive disorders.
And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east; and there he put the man whom he had formed. Genesis 2:8
In the second chapter of Genesis, the creation account describes how the man was, at first, alone. It is almost hard to fathom – just one person in all of creation. Today, for many of us, the importance of community became evident during the pandemic when social distancing was enforced. In some cases, this meant no hugs, no helping hand, no pats on the back, no shoulder to cry on. Early research has shown that social distancing has a significant impact on our mental health and emotional well-being. We humans are meant to live in community to support one another and to share. As a line in the first Rocky movie put it, “She’s got gaps, I got gaps, together we fill gaps.” Therein lies the power of relationships – to bring one another to wholeness. How often it is that we don’t realize how important something is until it is taken away.