The problem is that brothers on a journey, being outside of the community and the structure of the Rule, would have seen things and did things that might have affected them spiritually.
In light of that damage and disruption when the brothers return Benedict says that they should "ask the prayers of all for their faults, in case they may have been caught off guard on the way by seeing some evil thing or hearing some idle talk."
There are lots of things I love about liturgical churches. And one of those things is this: having come out of the world--like those brothers on a journey--we begin worship with a confession of sins.
From the Episcopal Church:
Let us confess our sins against God and our neighbor.The confiteor from the Catholic Church:
Most merciful God,
we confess that we have sinned against you
in thought, word, and deed,
by what we have done,
and by what we have left undone.
We have not loved you with our whole heart;
we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves.
We are truly sorry and we humbly repent.
For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ,
have mercy on us and forgive us;
that we may delight in your will,
and walk in your ways,
to the glory of your Name. Amen.
I confess to almighty GodDuring the lines of the confiteor "through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault" (Latin: mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa) the breast may be struck three times.
and to you, my brothers and sisters,
that I have greatly sinned,
in my thoughts and in my words,
in what I have done and in what I have failed to do,
through my fault, through my fault,
through my most grievous fault;
therefore I ask blessed Mary ever-Virgin,
all the Angels and Saints,
and you, my brothers and sisters,
to pray for me to the Lord our God.
Sadly, churches like my own don't have anything like this in our worship services.