Rorate Caeli

New Line of Traditionalist Mugs

Looking for a stocking stuffer for an altar boy? Wondering what to get for the priest who has everything? Want to surprise someone in the family? Or equip the tradbros with new slingshot rejoinders? Are you a firm believer (as am I) that children’s education takes place in the quiet interstices of life and not just in the official homeschooling lessons?

Enter the Os Justi Press line of ceramic coffee (or tea) mugs with traditional Catholic quotations and artwork. With quotations chosen by me, artistically designed by Julian Kwasniewski, and produced by Gelato, these are handsome items that should wear up well under repeated washings. They are bound to please those who agree with them and to prompt interesting conversations with anyone else.

Since the main point here is the text and artwork, I’ll let the mugs speak for themselves. (Please pardon the slightly blurry photos, this was my old camera that has since died. You can see additional photos at the links.) Also, please note that a few of the mugs have subsequently been updated with full blue or red handles and interiors.

"The Boomerang Effect After the Burke Punishment: What if tomorrow a Pope of different orientation does the same?" - in Italian daily "IL FOGLIO"


The Pope-King takes away the home and salary of "divisive" cardinals, 

but the result will be to set the dust on fire

Matteo Matzuzzi
Il Foglio
December 5, 2023

The boomerang effect after the "punishment" inflicted on Cardinal Burke is just around the corner, especially in those United States where the rift between conservatives and progressives is increasingly wide and painful. And in the curia there are also those who say, "What if tomorrow a pope of a different orientation does the same to those in vogue today?"

ROME - In recent days the Pope confirmed, through his biographer Austen Ivereigh, that he had decided to sanction Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke, taking away his home and salary because he was guilty of using such funds "to divide the Church." Francis himself made the announcement at the end of the Nov. 20 interdicasterial meeting (a sort of council of ministers of the Vatican curia), without giving further explanation. What he did want to emphasize, however, is that he never called Burke "my enemy," as appeared in various media. Cardinal Burke, a canonist of rank, was called to Rome by Benedict XVI fourteen years ago: for him the post of prefect of the Apostolic Signatura and the cardinal's purple. Francis, not long after his election, first excluded him from the then Congregation for Bishops of which he was a member - during the Ratzingerian pontificate his opinion was widely heard regarding episcopal appointments in the United States - then transferred him from the Signatura to the little more than honorific post of sovereign patron of the Order of Malta. From there, he was deposed as early as 2017, following an internal battle within the institution, with the Pope preventing him from doing anything despite having decided not to formally remove him. Only six years later, upon his 75th birthday, was news of the appointment of the new patron, 81-year-old Cardinal Gianfranco Ghirlanda. Burke is thus an emeritus, out of the governing games of the curia, but he remains a central point of reference for traditionalist and conservative realities.

Update on the Latin Mass in Washington, D.C. and Virginia: An Eminent Priest Silenced, and an Uncertain Future


Over a year into the crackdown on the Traditional Latin Mass in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. and the Diocese Arlington, VA, Traditionis Custodes continues to have a destructive effect. Instead of joyfully celebrating the witness of families and young people returning to Catholic tradition, both dioceses have maintained a blackout on discussion of the Old Rite. The Traditional Latin Mass cannot be mentioned in parish bulletins. Latin Mass congregations continue to worship- joyfully and reverently- in converted gymnasiums. The three Latin Masses remaining in parish churches in the Diocese of Arlington face the potential expiration of their two-year permissions this coming Summer.

Fontgombault Sermon for the First Sunday in Advent: "The strains of the Rorate Cæli are hovering over this time."


Sermon by the Right Reverend Dom Jean Pateau
Father Abbot of Our Lady of Fontgombault
Fontgombault, December 3, 2023

Should it have been given to me to believe in God, and should He have suddenly beckoned to me, knocking on my window on an evening of loneliness and inaction, I think that, without the slightest hesitation, I would forthwith have left the nets of my daily obligations, which intolerably grip and smother me, to follow Him and rely on Him with a blind trust.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

My dearly beloved Sons,

These lines were written by Dominique Bernard, a teacher savagely murdered in front of his school last October in Arras. They might surprise as an epigraph to this homily for the first Sunday in Advent. Yet, it seems to me that they are fitting. 

Latin Mass listings and the Latin Mass Society

Since its inception, the Latin Mass Society has published lists of traditional Masses in England and Wales; for many years these have been available to all on its website. If you go to the relevant page now you will be asked to log in as a member. The reason for this is explained in the 'Chairman's Message' of the currant Mass of Ages, the magazine of the Latin Mass Society, which arrived with members over the weekend.


Chairman’s Message

Joseph Shaw

PATRISTICS 101: Free Online Patristics Course with Dr. John Pepino - Starting in January 2024 - Register Now

Do you have friends and family who want to discover the roots of apostolic Christianity? Would you like people in your parish and community to be better educated about the earliest sources of Church teaching? If so, you should invite them to register for the ICC's upcoming course, Patristics 101: Apostolic and Ante-Nicene Fathers.

View the course trailer and register here.

How to sing Et Cum Spiritu Tuo at the Preface

Advent is a beautiful time of year to restore traditional practices, countering the implementation of the novus ordo liturgy, which was done on the First Sunday of Advent in 1969.

Advent is also an ideal time to clean up or correct liturgical details, starting the liturgical year anew.

Francis to International Theological Commission: The Church needs to be "demasculinized", be more "feminine".

[The Church's problem is apparently being too masculine.]

Impromptu words of the Holy Father

Thank you for this visit. And thank you for your work. There is a good address here with theological matters, but because of my health it is better not to read it. I will hand it out to you.

Thank you for what you do. Theology, theological reflection, is very important. But there is something about you that I do not like; pardon my sincerity. One, two, three, four women: poor women! They are alone! Ah, excuse me, five. We must advance in this. Women have a capacity for theological reflection that is different to that of us men. It will be because I have studied the theology of a woman a great deal. I was helped by a good German woman, Hanna-Barbara Gerl, on Guardini. She had studied that history and the theology of that woman was not so deep, but it is beautiful, it is creative. And now, in the upcoming meeting of the nine Cardinals, we will reflect on the feminine dimension of the Church.

Remembering John Paul II and the 'New Evangelization'

To celebrate fifteen years of John Paul II's papacy, the Pope agreed to sit down for a television interview with the Italian journalist Vittorio Messori, author of the Ratzinger Report, the classic series of interviews with then-Cardinal Ratzinger. John Paul II cancelled the television interview at the last minute. But he told Messori that he still wanted to answer his questions in writing. The written interview was published, without edits, as Crossing the Threshold of Hope (the title was suggested by the Pope himself) and became an international best-seller.

"Slandered Priests, Canceled Priests" - by Abp. Héctor Agüer: Why Does Francis Hate Good Priests?

Slandered Priests, Canceled Priests

Abp. Héctor Agüer

Emeritus of La Plata, Argentina

Buenos Aires, November 28, 2023

Several priests who follow the teachings of Pope Francis with attention have expressed to me their dismay and sorrow because they have recorded how often His Holiness denigrates priests. He has called them "bitter (cod-faced), spinsters, sacramental clerks, ambitious, gossipers, climbers...," and other denigrating epithets. A lack of justice and charity.

There are thousands of priests in the world; among them there are some to whom some of the epithets that Francis' accusations accumulate are applicable. But his generalizations in sermons, catechetical texts, and messages contradict the truth, and what is scandalous is that they depart radically from the affirmations of the Second Vatican Council, which dedicated the Decree Presbyterorum Ordinis to the ministry and life of priests. I quote some passages from that text: 

How Old is the "Old Mass"? - Michael Charlier

The vision of St Gregory the Great during Mass
How Old is the "Old Mass"?
Michael Charlier (source in German)
November 27, 2023

At the time of Pope Gregory (590 - 604), many parts of the Roman liturgy were already so old that no one could remember their introduction or even speak of them having been "introduced". Of Gregory's predecessors, Damasus I (366 - 384) and Gelasius I (492 - 496) are named as popes who intervened in the liturgy in one way or another. 

"Cardinal Burke is my enemy, so I am taking away his flat and salary," Pope Francis Reportedly Tells Heads of Dicasteries


According to a well-sourced report in The New Daily Compass, Pope Francis told the Heads of Dicasteries as follows at their November 20, 2023 meeting: "Cardinal Burke is my enemy, so I am taking away his flat and salary." 

Secretary of State Parolin Lays Down the Law for German Church: Priesthood for Men Only; Catholic Teaching on Homosexuality Non-Negotiable

 “Tagespost" exclusive: Rome Opens the Parachute

Die Tagespost
November 24, 2023

Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin informs the German bishops that the ordination of priests reserved for men and the Church's teaching on homosexuality are non-negotiable - a German special path is therefore 

The German bishops have received a clear message from the Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin that the Vatican is not considering negotiating the letter "Ordinatio Sacerdotalis", in which Pope John Paul II confirmed the exclusion of women from ordination to the priesthood in 1994, or the Church's teaching on homosexuality in upcoming talks with a delegation of German bishops. In a letter addressed to the Secretary General of the German bishops, Beate Gilles, dated October 23, which was made available to this editorial team, Parolin specifies the procedure and content of a German-Roman dialog round on the Synodal Way.

Pope Francis as Public Heretic: The Evidence Leaves No Doubt — by Dr. John Lamont

Editorial Note: Rorate Caeli’s position is that Francis is the pope and that sedevacantism or any of its variants is mistaken. For the sake of enriching the public debate, we publish this study by frequent contributor Dr John Lamont concerning heresies in documents signed by Pope Francis (PDF here for those who prefer that format; the link is now correct). While Dr. Lamont agrees that Francis is the pope, he considers that the questions that the pope's heretical statements raise need to be addressed in order to prepare theologians and prelates for what is to come.

Pope Francis as Public Heretic: The Evidence Leaves No Doubt

Dr. John Lamont

Pope Francis has recently published answers to two sets of dubia submitted to him by members of the College of Cardinals: one set submitted by Cardinals Brandmüller, Burke, Sandoval, Sarah, and Zen on July 10, 2023, and the other set submitted by Cardinal Dominik Duka on July 13, 2023. Pope Francis responded to the dubia of the five cardinals on July 11 and made this reponse public on October 2. On September 25, 2023, the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith responded to dubia proposed by Cardinal Dominik Duka; the response was endorsed by the Pope. On November 1, 2023, Pope Francis issued, motu proprio, the apostolic letter Ad Theologiam Promovendam to accompany revised statutes for the Pontifical Academy of Theology. His answers to these dubia and his apostolic letter openly and unmistakably contradict the Catholic faith (see Annexe II for the texts in question).

"Everything is tolerated, drastic measures only for Strickland": Bishop Rob Mutsaerts

The following translation appeared at LifeSiteNews (here) and is reprinted with permission.--PAK

The dismissal of US Bishop Joseph Strickland from the Diocese of Tyler, Texas, remains a strange story. As a bishop, Strickland is known for being humble, balanced, and faithful to the Church. Oh, and law-abiding too. Which is why he accepted his dismissal. His response is in no way hostile to the pope. He is simply asking for prayer and [for Catholics] to remain faithful to the Church.

Javier Milei Elected President of Argentina in a Repudiation of Francis and Peronism by the People of Argentina


Javier Milei, a Catholic libertarian and outspoken critic of Pope Francis, has been elected President of Argentina over a Peronist candidate in a stunning, double-digit upset win. Milei stated that Pope Francis “has an affinity for murderous communists” and accused him of violating the Ten Commandments. Some Westerners thought these comments might hurt Milei in Argentina, Francis's home country. instead, Milei's aggressive criticisms of Pope Francis carried him to an upset victory.

English Translation of the Dicastery for the Doctrine on the Faith on Baptisms and Weddings and "Transgender and Homosexual" Persons

 [Translated by Fr. "X" from the original]

Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith

Answers to Several Questions from His Excellency, the Most Reverend José Negri, 

Bishop of Santo Amaro, Brazil, Regarding Participation in the Sacraments of Baptism and Matrimony by Transgender Persons and Homosexual Persons (3 November 2023)

[The following is an unofficial translation of the original version of the document. At the time of this translation, the document was posted on the official website of the CDF only in Italian and Portuguese.]

On July 14, 2023, a letter came to this Dicastery from His Excellency, José Negri, Bishop of Santo Amaro, Brazil, containing certain questions regarding the possible participation in the sacraments of Baptism and Matrimony by transexual persons or those with same-sex attraction.

Having studied the matter, this Dicastery responded as follows.

Responses of the Dicastery to Bp. José Negri

The following responses put forward again, in substance, the fundamental contents of what, in the past, was affirmed by this Dicastery in regard to this matter.

1. Can a transexual be baptized?

Special Rosary Rally for Bishop Strickland at the Apostolic Nunciature Tomorrow!


For those in the Washington, D.C. area, please consider coming to a special Rosary Rally this Saturday (tomorrow) outside the Apostolic Nunciature at 9 AM to pray for Bishop Strickland in the wake of his unjust removal from the Diocese of Tyler. Cardinal Pierre, the American Nuncio, has played a big role in pressuring bishops to cancel Latin Masses across the U.S. He also reportedly told Bishop Strickland that he was being removed in part for not implementing Latin Mass restrictions. Thus, it is fitting that we pray for Cardinal Pierre, Bishop Strickland, and the entire Church during this time of crisis and confusion.

Edward Pentin Exposes the Synod on Synodality


Edward Pentin is one of the most important Vatican journalists of the Francis era. He is the author of the book The Rigging of a (2014) Vatican Synod?: An Investigation of Alleged Manipulation at the Extraordinary Synod on the Family. That book exposed the underhanded efforts to sideline traditionalists and conservatives at the 2014 Synod on the Family. 

For the Feast of All Benedictine Saints (November 13)

Pietro Annigoni, La Gloria di S.Benedetto
The following reflection was written by Fr Peter Miller, OSB, prior of the Monks of Mary, Mother of the Word, in Sprague, Washington. To read more about this community and its future Our Lady of Whitestone Monastery, go here; to receive their newsletter, go here.

Feast of All Holy Monks of the Order of Saint Benedict
November 13, 2023

The Francis Effect: Old St. Mary Before and After Traditionis Custodes


Old St. Mary in Chinatown is a beautiful historic Church in Washington, D.C.'s Chinatown neighborhood. Built by German immigrants, it fell on hard times in the 1980s. But when it obtained an indult Latin Mass in the mid 1980s, it sprang back to life. 

Cardinal Müller on Strickland's Sacking: "It's an abuse of the Divine Right of the Episcopate."

In remarks given to French periodical 

L'Homme Nouveau (September edition)

What is being done to Bishop Strickland is terrible, an abuse of the divine right of the episcopate.

STRICKLAND REMOVED - Francis Peron attacks again: to my enemies not even Justice

Removal of bishop of Tyler, U.S.A., and appointment of apostolic administrator

The Holy Father has removed Bishop Joseph E. Strickland from the pastoral care of the diocese of Tyler, United States of America, and has appointed Bishop Joe Vásquez of Austin as apostolic administrator of the same diocese, rendering it sede vacante. [source]


 If only Bishop Strickland had been a member of Uncle Ted McCarrick's clique of abusers of minors, or used bodily fluids in chalices (Rupnik) after raping sisters, he might have been named a Cardinal by Francis…

Dr. Peter Kwasniewski's Lecture: Liturgical Obedience & The Seductions of Autonomy- Now Available on YouTube

As part of its monthly Speakers Series, the Arlington Latin Mass Society recently hosted liturgical scholar Dr. Peter Kwasniewski for a lecture entitled, "Liturgical Obedience & The Seductions of Autonomy." In it, Dr. Kwasniewski makes the important argument that the Traditional Latin Mass best fosters the virtues of  humility and obedience in priests by requiring strict conformance to its rubrics. It is available for viewing at this link

Support the Transalpine Redemptorists - Buy their 2024 Traditional Catholic Calendar

We highly recommend their beautiful publications, including their yearly calendar.

The Papa Stronsay Liturgical Calendar is back for its 2024 edition.  [Order here]


As for the previous years, this calendar provides the Liturgical feast and colour for each day of the year, following the Traditional 1962 Calendar of the Roman Rite. But we include also other particular feasts, points of interests, the liturgical zodiac, days of abstinence, holidays, and many other things. The Martyrology page also enables you to celebrate the Saints’ anniversary for the year. 

The Catholic Cash Cow

by Fr. Donald Kloster (Guest op-ed)

Nowhere is the modern upside down world more observable than with our Bishops and their misappropriation of the lay pecuniary donations in their coffers.

The Last Latin Mass at Mary Queen of Peace


Last Sunday was the last Latin Mass (for now) at Mary Queen of Peace in Cleveland, OH. The faithful parishioners are now ejected from their parish-- simply because they loved the Church and its highest and holiest possession, its traditional liturgy. Note the tears of the faithful, who must suffer such misery because of the wicked shepherds in charge of the Church. What kind of cruel shepherd would force people to suffer like this for their faith? “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?"

The Holy Gospels as a Means of Grace for the Interior Life: Counsels from Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange

By Salvatore J. Ciresi


The apostolic writings from Saints Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are the most important records for our knowledge of the words and deeds of the Lord Jesus Christ.  No doubt, there are other means to read, study, and meditate upon the Savior’s life.  Such ways may be drawn from Tradition (and traditions), the venerable liturgical and sacramental rites of the Catholic Church, Magisterial statements, approved private revelations, classic devotional practices and customs, and the writings from the celebrated patrimonies of East and West.  Whichever means one employs, the inspired and inerrant chronicles from the Four Evangelists will always hold their unique status.  

Wisdom from a Dominican Master

Dr Kwasniewski Lecture in Minneapolis, November 11, 2023

The hearty welcome of All Saints' Parish (FSSP) in Minneapolis is always something to look forward to. I will be visiting next week for a lecture (my third time there). The event will be held at a nearby church. All details in the poster below. Hope to see some Rorate readers from the area!

Please use the QR code to RSVP so the planners can prepare enough food.

In memoriam: Wolfgang Waldstein (1928-2023) - by Roberto de Mattei

Roberto de Mattei
November 2, 2023

The funeral of Wolfgang Waldstein, an eminent legal philosopher and exemplary Catholic, who passed away on Oct. 17, 2023, at the age of 95, was held at St. Sebastian Church in Salzburg on Oct. 31, 2023. 

National Geographic on Traditional Catholicism: Young People and the Latin Mass

These devout young Catholics are embracing the old ways

The movement embraces some Old World traditions that even the Church has referred to as backwards.

National Geographic
Matthew Teague 
(Photographs by Ryan Brady)
October 26, 2023



[Photographer Ryan] Brady had occasionally attended a Catholic church, and he had recently heard about a new movement among some Catholics who were rebelling against modernity by worshipping in old ways, ways that centuries ago defined the faith but had almost faded from existence. So he took up his camera and headed toward a nearby church that offered the ancient Latin Mass, or what traditionalists call the Extraordinary Form.

"Is Pope Francis Schizophrenic?" - Paix Liturgique Letter 971

 [the far-left French Catholic magazine] is fulminating. This week's issue (n° 787) (October 12 to 18, 2023) inveighs against "Vatican schizophrenia" in the Rupnik affair—you know, that Jesuit who dabbles in the arts, and who claims poetic license shamelessly to abuse. "What's the Pope playing at?" continues the organ of those who keep us from believing straight [Golias’s motto], when he restrains the arm of canon law even as it readies to punish the unmasked, goat-footed Satyr? And so rage clouds the minds of those imprecators over at Golias. Schizophrenia, in the clinical sense of the term, stifles freedom of play as well as of the mind. The authority of Greek etymology is at the service of rhetoric to be sure, but it is not given to everyone to be a Demosthenes. If the reigning Pope is mentally ill, he's better pitied than blamed. But then he can no longer govern the Church.

"Approaches to Ecclesial Radiography" - Archbishop Héctor Aguer

What do we see when we apply an x-ray to the body of the Church on earth? The emeritus Archbishop of La Plata, Argentina, tells us in this latest column from October 31, 2023. Translated for Rorate Caeli.

"The Death of a Pontificate" - by Aldo Maria Valli

Empty square and exhausted rituals: The Death of a pontificate
Aldo Maria Valli
October 26, 2023

The image speaks for itself. A Wednesday general audience. An empty square. Only a few dozen people. All right, it's raining. But once upon a time, when it rained, the square became a sea of umbrellas.

The image is bleak, and the Vatican media, starting with the TV center, no longer know how to hide the fact: no one goes to listen to Francis. They try to make up for it with close-ups, indeed very closed-up images, somewhat like the Polish TV did with John Paul II on his visit to his homeland. But if, in the case of Polish television, the problem was hiding the crowds flocking to Wojtyła, in the Vatican the problem is the opposite: hiding the embarrassing gaps.

“What does the Pope really want?” - Bishop Rob Mutsaerts

A post by Bishop Rob Mutsaerts, Auxiliary Bishop of 's-Hertogenbosch (Bois-le-Duc), Netherlands. Translated from his blog in Dutch here

What is the synod underway in Rome actually about? Over and again, official Vatican sources are telling us many things. That it is not about theology, nor about doctrinal matters, nor about LGBTQ+, the ordination of women and the issue of celibacy. Neither is it, they add, about seeking to undermine or replace the hierarchical nature of the church or democratize the decision-making process. No, it would seem to be dealing with the question of what synodality is. After all, this is a synod on synodality.

Contemporary Double Standards and the Church's Historic Preference for Sacred Languages in the Liturgy

By James Baresel

Some months ago, a generally excellent priest—an outspoken friend of the Traditional Latin Mass though not a traditionalist—mentioned two things in a conversation which demonstrate of how even Catholics whose orthodoxy and friendliness to the ancient Roman Rite are unimpeachable can unconsciously accept assumptions foreign to historical Catholicism and hold traditionalists to a double standard.

Wanda Półtawska (1921-2023), a Pro-Life Leader - By Roberto de Mattei

Wanda Półtawska. one of the leading pro-life figures of the 20th century and a close collaborator of John Paul II, died in Krakow at the age of 102 on October 25, 2023.

Wanda Półtawska was born in Lublin on November 2, 1921. After the German invasion of Poland, because of her involvement in the resistance, she was arrested by the Gestapo and imprisoned in Lublin Castle. After being interrogated and tortured, she was deported to Ravensbrück concentration camp on November 21, 1941, where she was subjected to surgical experiments carried out by Karl Gebhardt, Himmler's personal physician later sentenced to death as a war criminal. She miraculously survived and, after liberation, participated in the work of the Commission of Inquiry into Nazi crimes in Poland. The nightmare of those days lives again in his book And I'm Afraid of My Dreams. My Days in the Ravensbrück Lager published in several languages (Edizioni San Paolo, Rome 2010).

How consoling that Francis is so concerned for women!

Pope Francis wrapped up this phase of the so-called “synod” with an address that handed out some mild praises and a bunch of bitter complaints, as usual (link). 

Eclipse of the Synod: New Catechism to Launch in Rome

Like the Latrocinium (“Robber Council”) of Ephesus in 449, the 2023 Rome phase of the Synod on Synodality is nearly over, and may already be safely consigned to the pages of Church history as the Vanitatum, “The Moot Synod.”