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Showing posts from June, 2009


Our friends at The Latin Mass Society of England and Wales have sent us the following reports of past events and announcements of future events. ---
1. High Mass at Westminster Cathedral (report with pictures). ---
2. Summer pilgrimage schedule.
Wed 1 - Pilgrimage to Caldey Island. St Illtyd’s Church, Caldey Abbey, Caldey Island. Sung Mass 11.30am, Details: Steffano Mazzeo on 01597 840634;
Sun 12 - National Pilgrimage to Holywell. St Winefride’s, Well Street, Holywell. Mass at 2.30pm followed by Procession to St Winefride’s Well Devotions and Veneration of the relic and Benediction; Details: David Lloyd on 01352 712327;
Sun 19 - Pilgrimage in honour of SS John Lloyd & Philip Evans. St Peter’s, St Peter St, Roath, Cardiff . Sung Mass and Procession 3.00pm; Details: Kingsley Lewis on 029 2025 1685
Sat 15 - Welsh National Pilgrimage to Shrine of Our Lady of the Taper. Our Lady of the Taper, North Road, Cardigan. Mass at 12noon followed by Procession, Holy Hour and Benedi…

Pictures of the Syrian Catholic Patriarchal Liturgy in Saint Mary Major last June 18

As previously reported on this blog, His Beatitude Mar Ignatius Joseph III, Syrian Catholic Patriarch of Antioch celebrated a Patriarchal Divine Liturgy in the Syro-Antiochene (or West Syriac) Rite last June 18, 2009, at the Papal Basilica of St. Mary Major. The occasion was the granting of ecclesial communion to the Patriarch by Pope Benedict XVI. (Upon their election, Eastern Catholic Patriarchs ask for, and receive, the ecclesiastica communio from the Roman Pontiff.)

A large selection of pictures is now available on the website of the Syrian Catholic Archeparchy of Aleppo.

Without in any way wishing to be critical of the Syrian Catholics in this time of great joy for them, and solely for the information of our readers, I would like to note the extensive influence of Roman liturgical vesture on the vestments of Syrian Catholic clergy, an influence also present in the Chaldean and Maronite Catholic Churches. Thus, their use of tall Latin-style miters and lace albs, and vestment decor t…

Pope explains what "thinking like an adult" really means

In the last few decades, the expression ‘adult faith’ [fede adulta, 'grown up faith'] has become a widespread slogan. It is often used in relation to the attitudes of those who no longer pay attention to what the Church and her Pastors say — which is to say, those who choose on their own what to believe or not to believe in a sort of ‘do-it-yourself’ faith. Expressing oneself against the Magisterium of the Church is presented as a sort of ‘courage’, whereas in fact not much courage is needed because one can be certain of receiving public praise.
Instead, courage is needed to adhere to the Church’s faith, even if it contradicts the 'order' of today’s world. Paul calls this non-conformism an ‘adult faith’. For him, following the prevailing winds and currents of the time is childish.
For this reason, it is part of an adult faith to dedicate oneself to the inviolability of life from its beginning, thus radically opposing the principle of violence, in defense precisely of …

CORRECTED: Pontifical Masses and Upcoming Ordinations

1) From our friends in Messainlatino comes news of the following ordinations and Pontifical liturgies: June 30, 2009, Commemoration of St. Paul – In the ICRSP seminary in Gricigliano: Low Pontifical Mass by Msgr. John Basil Meeking, Bishop Emeritus of Christchurch, NZ, with conferment of tonsure and minor orders on seminarians

July 1, 2009, Feast of the Precious Blood of Our Lord, -- In the ICRSP seminary in Gricigliano: Solemn Pontifical Mass by Bishop John Basil Meeking, with ordinations to the subdiaconate and diaconate.

July 2, 2009, Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary – in the Church of Santi Michele e Gaetano in Florence, at 9:30 A.M: Solemn Pontifical Mass by Archbishop Raymond Burke, during which he will ordain three new priests, including the Japanese Raphael Katsayuki Ueda. (I believe that he is the first ICRSP priest from Asia -- CAP)

July 2, 2009, at 6:00 P.M., in the ICRSP seminary in Gricigliano: Pontifical Vespers and Te Deum presided over by Msgr. Giuseppe B…

What could have been

Everyone realizes, of course, that God our Redeemer founded this society which was to endure to the end of time, for as Christ said, "Behold, I am with you all days, even unto the consummation of the world."For this intention He addressed ardent prayers to His Father: "That all may be one, even as thou, Father, in me and I in thee; that they also may be one in Us." Surely this prayer was heard and granted because of His reverent submission. This is a comforting hope; it assures us that someday all the sheep who are not of this fold will want to return to it. Then, in the words of God our Savior, "there shall be one fold and one shepherd."
This fond hope compelled Us to make public Our intention to hold an Ecumenical Council. Bishops from every part of the world will gather there to discuss serious religious topics. They will consider, in particular, the growth of the Catholic faith, the restoration of sound morals among the Christian flock, and appropriate…

The Return of the “Fundamentalists”

Henri Tincq, specialist in religious issues who has just published "Catholicism: The return of the fundamentalists” analyzes the misunderstandings between the fundamentalists and Benedict XVI. The following is an interview with Monsieur Tincq which appears in the Sunday edition ofLe Parisien:
Where do the fundamentalists come from?The vast majority of the faithful are those nostalgic for the Church before 1965 and especially the Latin Mass. However, the leaders of the movement are priests and lay people who are much more arrogant and who often belong to the extreme right. Sociologically, they consist mainly of large families of aristocratic and bourgeois tradition who are very committed to the moral order and the Catholic tradition. But it is not exclusive - they also recruit from the mainstream.Are we witnessing their great return?We can not speak of a mass return, but the noise they make is inversely proportional to their numbers. There are 150,000 fundamentalists in the world i…


Five new priests were ordained for the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter (FSSP) today, in Wigratzbad, Bavaria, by Bishop Athanasius Schneider, auxiliary of Karaganda (Kazakhstan). Pictures available at Schola Sainte Cécile.
Congratulations to the new priests, their families, and the Fraternity!

Troubles across the Río de la Plata
Bishop blackmailed by male lovers

The small Oriental Republic of Uruguay has a long shared history with Argentina - and common events... A few years ago, "Progressive" Bishop Juan Carlos Maccarone was forced to resign after being blackmailed by a male lover. Now, a similar episode takes place across the Río de la Plata, with Bishop Francisco Barbosa, of the Diocese of Minas, as La Nación reports:
Local daily El Observador revealed the case that has no precedents in the Uruguayan Church, and that has led to commotion in the Catholic community of Minas, a city in the upland section of this country.
The sexual relationship of the priest with two convicts was discovered because the Bishop himself presented a complaint to the criminal courts when he felt harassed by his lovers, who were blackmailing him with the threat of making public the pictures of their encounters.
Bishop Barbosa had met the former convicts when they requested assistance to the National Service for the Detained which, in the Departmen…

Events: Tomorrow, in Rio

A very important event will be held in the City of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, tomorrow (June 27th), 3pm, at Colégio Santo Adolfo, in the Santa Teresa neighborhood.
Fr. Michael Rodríguez, the parish priest of San Juan Bautista Church, in the diocese of El Paso, Texas, will give a lecture to Traditional Catholics of the City of Rio de Janeiro.
His presentation will be called “The Crisis of Faith and the Traditional Latin Mass”. It will include four parts, each one lasting approximately 30 min: (1) The pearl of great price (Mt 13:45-46): our Catholic Faith (2) The pearl of great price (Mt 13:45-46): the Traditional Latin Mass (3) How to appreciate & participate in the Traditional Latin Mass (4) An authentic Catholic spirituality based on the Traditional Latin Mass After the lecture, Fr. Rodríguez will lead the Rosary and then celebrate the Traditional Mass.

St. Josemaria Escriva on the Sacred Liturgy: A Selection

St. Josemaria Escriva, founder of Opus Dei, was known for his love for the sacred liturgy. He offered the Mass of the Gregorian Rite in private until his death, and it was this Mass that inspired his statements on the importance of the liturgy and most especially of the rites of Holy Mass.

On the importance of the liturgy: Your prayer should be liturgical. How I would like to see you using the psalms and prayers from the missal, rather than private prayers of your own choice. (The Way, 86)
Have veneration and respect for the holy Liturgy of the Church and for its ceremonies. Observe them faithfully. Don't you see that, for us poor men, even what is greatest and most noble must enter through the senses? (The Way, 522)
The Church sings, it has been said, because merely to speak would not satisfy its desire for prayer. You, as a Christian — and a chosen Christian, — should learn to sing liturgically. (The Way, 523)
That woman in the house of Simon the leper in Bethany, who anoint…

Interesting News from Russia

Link to the full article

Relevant quote:

"... all patients in maternity hospitals and prenatal clinics in Astrakhan will be given small versions of the icon (of the Virgin Mary - CAP) for free. "The initiative was organized by the Russian Orthodox Church and has provoked controversy, since 20 percent of the population of Astrakhan is Muslim, mainly ethnic Kazakhs and Tatars. " This news comes as one of the Moscow Patriarchate's most high-profile and influential missionaries, Andrey Kurayev, criticizes the praising of tolerance and wonders aloud if Christians and Muslims are really compatible: "We'd better stop praising tolerance and discuss if Christians and Muslims are compatible in the present-day world," he said in his interview to the Den za Dnyom Estonian weekly." *** "...Their tactics is clear: while they make a minority, they speak of secularism and equality, but as soon as Muslims make more than a half population, they will demand total co…

"Similar to Opus Dei?"
Schmidberger responds: "Somewhat."

Some ordinations of new priests by the Bishops of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX) took place in the United States last Saturday. New ordinations are expected for next Saturday in Germany - despite the overreaction of several German ordinaries. Amidst the controversy, the German Catholic News Agency (KNA - Katholische Nachrichten-Agentur) interviewed the former Superior General of the SSPX and current Superior for the District of Germany, Father Franz Schmidberger (source: DomRadio):
The German Superior of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Pius X, Franz Schmidberger, has defended the ordination of new priests planned for the coming weekend. In an interview with the Catholic News Agency (KNA), Schmidberger also commented on his assessment of the Second Vatican Council and what he expects from further discussions with Rome.
KNA: Herr Schmidberger, are you a priest of the Catholic Church?
Schmidberger: Of course. I was ordained to the priesthood in 1975 by Archbishop Marc…

Another small triumph for the restoration of the sacred

The "Penafrancia Festival" refers to one of the Philippines' largest religious events: a nine-day novena in Naga City (the see city of the Archdiocese of Nueva Caceres) to Our Lady of Penafrancia, culminating in a fluvial procession with the miraculous statue of Our Lady on the 3rd Saturday of September. This event attracts millions of pilgrims from all over the Philippines and the Filipino diaspora, and just like similar festivals all over the Catholic world, is constantly threatened by the danger of becoming yet another occasion for purely secular merrymaking and government-promoted mass tourism.
Some might find the decision to ban street parties and beer plazas for the duration of the novena to be rather puritanical, but the desire of both Church and state to work together to keep an event such as this entirely devoted to sacred thoughts, is yet another encouraging sign that the spirit of Christendom lives, here and there, even if only in flickers. From the official n…

Maronite Patriarch confronts Hezbollah

The Maronite Patriarch of Antioch and the Whole Levant, Mar Nasrallah Boutros Cardinal Sfeir, has denounced in no uncertain terms the threat posed by the extremist Shiite group Hezbollah to Lebanon's identity, in the process facing the wrath of the Hezbollah -- which insults Christians even as it demands respect for its "religious sentiments" AsiaNews: Sfeir to Hezbollah, those who lose seek excuses Daily Star of Lebanon: Patriarch thanks those who defended his stances Pray for the ancient Christian communities of Turkey, Lebanon, Iraq, Syria, Jordan and the Holy Land, that they will continue to be steadfast in the face of oppression and fanaticism.

The Roman Pilgrimage of the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer

F.SS.R Mass in St. Peter's Basilica
The blog of the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer now has pictures of the Roman pilgrimage of Fr. Michael Mary Sim F.SS.R and five of the congregation's seminarians. They attended the Papal Vespers of the Feast of the Sacred Heart last June 19 and offered Mass (1962 Missal, naturally) in various Roman churches, including St. Peter's Basilica (in the morning of June 22, 2009).
More from Rome (with pictures of the F.SS.R's Mass in St. Peter's Basilica)
Visiting Holy Places (including a picture of Solemn Mass in the FSSP church in Rome last June 21)

Sung Mass at Holy Mary in Transpontina
The Passing Shadow Beneath the Roman Sun (Papal Vespers)

“Catholic Pride” Update: Church and State square off

As was recently reported here, His Exellency Marc Aillet, Bishop of Bayonne, Lescar and Oloron in the Basque region of France, issued a press release condemning the annual “Gay Pride” affair which took place on Sunday in the city of Biarritz. Rorate Cæli has come across an ensuing correspondence between the Bishop and the Mayor of Biarritiz, Mr. Didier Borotra. Letter from Bishop Marc Aillet: Mr. Mayor, Having recently learned through families living in Biarritz of the forthcoming "Gay Pride" affair, I would just like to express my profound incredulity. It is yet another official offence aimed at the Catholic Church to believe the announced presence of the "Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence” virulently displaying their anti-Christianity. I cannot even imagine how Muslims and Jews would react if the symbols of their religious traditions were used in this way ... The disruptive protests made by groups who are for the most part outsiders in the city of Biarritz do not represent,…

Liturgical Reminder for the Vigil of the Birthday of St. John the Baptist

The Birth and Naming of St. John the Baptist, by Giotto
It is my hope that more basilicas, cathedrals and parishes, seminaries and other houses of formation, and religious institutions, will make greater use of the rich treasury of feast-day blessings that is to be found in the Rituale Romanum as well as in the various local supplements to the Rituale. The same for the treasury of processions and other occasional ceremonies that can be found in the liturgical books associated with the classical Roman or Gregorian Rite.
These ceremonies enrich us wih grace, add spiritual depth to our experience and understanding of the liturgical year, illuminate the sacred mysteries and inspire fervor, and relieve the "flatness" of the liturgical season of the Sundays after Pentecost (or of the even more austere "Ordinary Time" of the Paul VI Missal). The faithful and complete celebration of the sacred liturgy in all its glory will do more for the restoration of Catholic Tradition t…

USCCB clarifies ambiguities of "Reflections on Covenant and Mission"

2. Since Reflections on Covenant and Mission is not an official statement of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, it was not subject to the same review process that official documents undergo. In the years since its publication, however, some theologians, including Catholics, have treated the document as authoritative. This has proven problematic because the section representing Catholic thought contains some statements that are insufficiently precise and potentially misleading. Reflections on Covenant and Mission should not be taken as an authoritative presentation of the teaching of the Catholic Church. In order to avoid any confusion, the USCCB Committee on Doctrine and the Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs have decided to point out some of these ambiguities and to offer corresponding clarifications. *** 8. Reflections on Covenant and Mission correctly asserts that the Church "must always evangelize and will always witness to its faith in the presen…

Fellay speaks

The relevant questions and answers from the interview granted by Bishop Bernard Fellay, Superior General of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX) to Austrian daily Die Presse (Sunday Edition):
Die Presse: How is the dialogue between the SSPX and Rome, which created so much dust in January?
Bishop Bernard Fellay: We have sorted out our ideas in early June. The decision of the Pope on the design of the talks will be announced in the next few days. It is true that a special Commission will be set up for the discussion - with some Roman theologians and some of our priests. ...
The other major sticking point between you and Rome is the Tridentine Rite. Due to the Pope’s re-authorization of this Rite, this has at least largely been defused. Is this enough for you, or would you have expected even more?
Fellay: I'm sure there will be even more coming. Not from us, but for Rome itself the liturgical situation must be improved. That will come. ...
In a reconciliation with Rome, …

“Catholic Pride” – from the mouth of a Bishop

Statement by Bishop Aillet about "Gay Pride" in Biarritz
The organization of the "Gay Pride 2009” in Biarritz for Saturday 20 June only arouses my indignation, as it arouses the disapproval of many families and other people whatever their religious beliefs may be. Indeed, the participation in this event by "Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence", an association known for its provocative anti-Catholicism and blasphemous provocations, shows a genuine contempt for the Catholic faith and religious life which so strongly characterizes the soul, culture, and traditions of the Basque region.
It is the Churches intends to defend and promote in all circumstances, the family founded on marriage between persons of different sexes and the right of every child to be raised by a father and a mother.
It therefore rejects claims that "Gay Pride" echoes in the name of a tiny minority of our citizens, but it eminently respects homosexual persons with care and compassion for the…


1. New weekly Traditional Mass location in Massachusetts
Reverend Father Thien Nguyen, pastor at Immaculate Conception Church in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, has generously invited Reverend Father David Phillipson to offer the Extraordinary Form Mass (the Traditional Latin Mass) every Sunday at 8am, beginning on June 28th and also on Holy Days according to the Traditional Calendar. Father will hear confessions at 7:30am before Mass, and the Rosary will be prayed aloud at that time. Father will also hold spiritual conferences and traditional devotions, and administer the Sacraments according to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite."
For more information, visit the parish website. Immaculate Conception Church is located at 59 Walnut Street in Fitchburg, Massachusetts.
2. Feast of the Precious Blood in Virginia
Reverend Father Paul Scalia will be offering a Solemn High Mass on Wednesday, July 1st, 7 pm at Our Lady of Hope Catholic Church in Sterling, Virginia, for the Feast of…

Archdiocese of Manila: Only young boys can be altar servers

I have just received a copy of Gaudencio Cardinal Rosales' Without Sunday We Cannot Live: A Pastoral Letter on the Sunday Celebration of the Eucharist. The letter is signed June 14, but is being disseminated only now. I still have to thoroughly study the pastoral letter (36 pages long), and for now I would like to refrain from commenting on it, except to note that it is totally silent on both the Forma Extraordinaria and the modest "reform of the reform" that Pope Benedict XVI is promoting by his example(no surprise there). However, the letter does have at least one bit of very good news, and it can be found in no. 28. page 17: Altar Servers 28. From antiquity, the altars (sic) servers have exercised their ministry within the assembly and they have helped to enhance the quality of the celebration by taking part in processions and by ensuring that all the requisites for the celebration are available at the appropriate time. (GIRM, 100) It is a proven fact that many ordained …

The Pontifical Masses of Bishop Rifan in NYC

The blog of the Society of St. Hugh of Cluny now has pictures of Bishop Fernando Areas Rifan's Solemn Pontifical Mass on the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus last June 19, in St. Jean Baptiste Catholic Church. This Mass -- previously announced in Rorate and many other websites -- was reputed to be the first Solemn Pontifical Mass in New York City since Alfons Cardinal Stickler's memorable Mass in St. Patrick's Cathedral in 1996. Bishop Rifan also offered Low Pontifical Mass for the Feast of St. Ephrem the Syrian (June 18, 2009) in Holy Innocents Church in Manhattan.

For priests

[O]ur needs, our limits and weaknesses must lead us anew to the Heart of Jesus. If it is in fact true that sinners, by contemplating Him, must learn from Him the necessary "sorrow of sins" that leads them to the Father, this is even more true for sacred ministers.
How to forget, regarding this, that nothing makes the Church, the Body of Christ, suffer so much as the sins of her shepherds, above all of those who turn into "robbers of sheep" (John 10, 1), either because they misguide them with their private doctrines, or because they suffocate them within snares of sin and of death? Even for us, dear priests, the call to conversion and to recourse to Divine Mercy holds true, and we ought also to present with humility to the Heart of Jesus the request that He may preserve us from the terrible risk of harming those whom we are bound to save. Benedict XVI Homily during Vespers - Opening of the Year for Priests June 19, 2009