What Does St. Benedict's Motto Mean?
What is the meaning of St. Benedict's "To work is to pray"?
The Benedictine motto is actually the command "Pray and work!" There can be a sense in which work is prayer if it is offered up in a spirit of recollection and if prayer accompanies the work or at least precedes or follows it. But work is never simply a substitute for prayer. St. Benedict was very clear about this. In his holy Rule, he teaches that nothing should take precedence over the true work of the monastery, which is sacred worship in the liturgy, which he calls the "Work of God."