Solemnity of the Birth of John the Baptist

John the Baptist is a good role model for monks.

He lived in the wilderness, in the desert (Lk 1:80).
He was a man of prayer who taught his disciples how to pray (Lk 11:1).
He fasted often (Lk 5:33).
He lived on an austere diet, locusts and wild honey (Mk 1:6).
John practiced humility, “He must increase and I must decrease” (Jn 3:30).
He taught the need to share one’s goods with the poor (Lk 3:10-14).
He was truly seeking God, waiting for the One who was to come (Lk 7:18-23).
He was celibate, and lived in poverty (Mt 3:4).
He was obedient to the Word of God, “Make straight the way of the Lord” (Jn 1:23).

From the warm, safe little cell in his mother’s womb to the damp dangerous cell in Herod’s prison, John the Baptist was a prophet who interceded for his generation as we try to do for ours.

He is also a good role model for preachers. All of John’s preaching was short!