Rorate Caeli

Project: CD of choral music dedicated to Our Lady of Fatima.

From a reader of Rorate:

Smooth Stone Foundation, a non-profit corporation dedicated to promoting Catholic culture, is working on a project in which your readers may be interested.

In honor of the 100th anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima, we are commissioning a CD of choral music dedicated to Our Lady of Fatima. The music will be performed by professional choir singers conducted by Dr. Tim McDonnell, a professor of Sacred Music at Catholic University of America. The music will be traditional Catholic music drawn largely from Portugal. We hope to have the music recorded and CDs produced by May 13th, the 100th anniversary of the first appearance of the Blessed Virgin at Fatima. Here is the project page.

(We previously produced a CD of choral music for Christmas of 2015. Links to videos from that project may be found at the foundation's FB page.)

Ecclesia Dei confirms Fellay: "Full communion with SSPX is near."

From Andrea Tornielli, who has been one of the unofficial spokesman for Pope Francis in his pontificate, in an article this morning for La Stampa:

"We are working at this moment in the completion of some aspects of the canonical frame, which will be the Personal Prelature." Archbishop Guido Pozzo, Secretary of the Ecclesia Dei commission, charged with dialogue with the Society of Saint Pius X, confirms [SSPX Superior-General Fellay's words] to Vatican Insider that the stage of full communion with the Lefebvrians is near. The accomplishment of the agreement is now in plain sight, even if some time is still needed.

Socci: Why Bergoglio has been so affectionate with Chinese despots and Castro, but ferocious with Trump

Here is what might happen

Antonio Socci
‎January 22, 2017

In his inaugural speech, Donald Trump made reference a number of times to God and the Bible (on which he was sworn in as President). Christian inspiration is emblematic of American popular tradition, and Trump – who usually touches on very concrete subjects in his speeches, such as the everyday lives of people – on this solemn occasion, chose to tune in with the deep religious sense of the American people.

This is a political sign of opposition to the strongly secular ideology of the “liberal” establishment, which in recent years has ruled, and which - in that speech - has been brutally evicted from the “palace” with the slogan: let’s give the power back to the people.

SSPX Superior-General Fellay: "An agreement is possible without further wait."

From the interview granted by the Superior-General of the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX), Bishop Bernard Fellay, to the program "Terres de Mission" by TVLibertes, a conservative French network, as reported by Italian website Radio Spada:

Bishop Fellay confirmed in the program Terres de Mission of TVLibertes broadcast minutes ago: on the factual level, relations with the Vatican are already normal, and only the seal is missing on the agreement (video below):

De Mattei - Last Chance: Will the Malta Knights fold or resist? - Cardinal Parolin's Unconstitutional Letter

Corrispondenza Romana
Special Edition
January 27, 2017

The following letter we are publishing constitutes the latest slap in the face to the Order of Malta; it is an offence to its constitution, history and dignity.

All scholars of the law agree in attributing the Order of Malta’s complete independence from the Holy See as far as its internal governance is concerned. The Holy See cannot interfere in the administrative affairs of the Order, but only intervenes in what regards the religious life of its professed Knights.

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State, in a letter dated January 25, addressed to the Members of the Sovereign Council of the Order, who, on January 28 are to gather together in Rome at their headquarters in Via Condotti, writes, that Pope Francis:

• will nominate a “papal delegate”; an utterly odd figure for the Order of Malta
• confirms the resignation of the Grand Master, which will not be official until ratified by the Sovereign Council
• attributes to himself the power to render null and valid, all of the Grand Master’s and the Sovereign Council’s acts carried out after December 6 2016, re-integrating therefore Albrecht von Boeselager and dismissing the new Grand Chancellor Fra John Critien.

The position that each of the components of the Supreme Council will take on January 28 is to be made public. If they accept the diktat without a murmur, they will go down in history for having surrendered completely; if, with due respect toward the Vicar of Christ, they resist, they will show to the world that their Catholic and chivalrous spirit is still alive and is able to oppose the unjust exercise of power.

Roberto de Mattei


A translation of Cardinal Pietro Parolin’s letter:

Money Money Money! This explains Malta!

What a major coincidence! 

Exactly one week before (Dec. 15, 2016) the naming of the illegitimate commission (Dec. 22, 2016) created by the Pope in the Vatican Secretariat of State to "investigate" the dismissal of the Condom-Chancellor Von Boeselager, his brother had been named by the same Pope member of the Board of Superintendents of the Vatican Bank (the IOR, that carries the Vatican monies).

Yes, mere coincidence! Maybe we can now call His Holiness FRANCI$CU$...

A Note on the Sovereignity of the Order of Malta and the Temporal Power of the Pope

In his op-ed on the Holy See's intervention in the affairs of the Order of Malta here at Rorate, Prof. de Mattei states that the Holy Father “knew he hadn’t any legal title to intervene in the internal affairs of a sovereign Order,” and our editor, New Catholic, stated that the Holy See’s intervention was “absolutely contrary to the Constitutional Charter of the Sovereign Order.” Certain persons, however, have noted that the Holy See has claimed the right to depose sovereign rulers in the past, and therefore a certain amount of explanation and defense of our position is in order.

Francis: a Pontificate of Violence and Irrationality - and remembering Pope Benedict

The details of the naked and unconstitutional (absolutely contrary to the Constitutional Charter of the Sovereign Order) intervention of the Holy See in another Sovereign Entity (the Sovereign Order of Malta), revealed this evening by Edward Pentin, are nothing short of astonishing.


The Pope summoned Fra’ Festing to the Vatican on Jan. 24 on the strict instruction not to let anyone know about the audience — a modus operandi that has been used frequently during this pontificate, the Register has learned. During the meeting, Francis asked Fra’ Festing to resign immediately, to which the Grand Master agreed. The Pope then ordered him to write his resignation letter on the spot, according to informed sources.

Op-Ed: "Francis destroys the Sovereign Order of Malta" - by Roberto de Mattei

The Pope and the Order of Malta: a Pyrrhic Victory*?

Roberto de Mattei
Corrispondenza Romana
January 25, 2017
(Malta Knights at Lepanto - Francis did what the Turks couldn't do)

The resignation of Fra Matthew Festing, Grand Master of the Order of Malta, imposed on him by Francis on January 23rd, risks being a Pyrrhic victory for the Pope.

March for Life, Solemn High Mass in D.C.

This Friday, 27 January, will be the annual March for Life in Washington, D.C.  Mrs. Kellyanne Conway, counselor to President Donald Trump, will speak during the noon rally, which marks the first time a presidential administration has sent an official to speak at the march.  (Presidents Reagan, Bush and Bush would address marchers via telephone.) Hundreds of thousands of Americans are expected to attend, many of them Roman Catholic.  Traditional Catholics have a large presence among the crowd. [26 Jan. update: Vice President Mike Pence will also speak, in person, at the March for Life.]

Toward the end of the march, at 3 p.m., there will be a Solemn High Mass at Saint Mary, Mother of God church at 5th and H streets, NW.  This will be the 5th annual Nellie Gray Mass, sponsored by the Paulus Institute, for the repose of the soul of the Saint Mary's parishioner who founded the March for Life.

The Gospel, from the 2015 Nellie Gray Mass.  Father Scalia, subdeacon here, will be the 2017 celebrant.

The Temple is too rich - The Temple must die
Updated - Confirmed: Order of Malta's Grand Master Resigns


Infovaticana first reported it last night -- and now it has been confirmed by Reuters and Edward Pentin: in a move that destroys in practice the sovereignty of the sole remaining Sovereign Military Order, the Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, Fra Matthew Festing, was removed by Pope Francis (in euphemistic terms, in order to keep up appearances, he was "asked by the Pope to resign from his post and agreed to do so.")

Additional details: 

“The Pope asked him to resign and he agreed,” the spokesperson said, adding that the next step was a formality in which the group's Sovereign Council would approve the highly unusual resignation. Normally grand masters serve for life.

The Order will now be run by its number two, or Grand Commander, until a new head is elected.

The Order of Malta and the Vatican clashed last month when Fra’ Festing dismissed Grand Chancellor Albrecht Freiherr von Boeselager, the Order’s third most senior leader. Boeselager was asked to resign and when he twice refused, was dismissed on grounds of insubordination.

The ostensible issue behind the call for Boeselager’s resignation was that he was deemed ultimately responsible, following a commission of inquiry, for allowing contraceptives to be distributed by the Order’s humanitarian arm. But the Order also said there had been other "confidential" factors in play, as well as a “failure of trust.”

Boeselager protested the charges, and argued against the manner of his dismissal. He appealed to the Pope who appointed a five-member commission to look into the unusual circumstances of his sacking. Fra’ Festing refused to cooperate, saying the commission was interfering in the Order’s sovereignty and right to govern its internal affairs.

Also behind the dispute were allegations of an ambitious German association vying for control of the Order, accusations that the Grand Master was being overly authoritarian, and conflicts of interest among members of the Holy See commission.

Three members of the commission along with Boeselager have also been involved in a $118 million donation held in a trust in Switzerland. Despite documentation proving the contrary, the trust denied any connection with the Order. 

We can honestly say that this is the end of the Order as a special Sovereign entity -- it has become, in actual practice, an order like any other.

UPDATE 2 (1100 GMT): The full communiqué by the Holy See Press Office:
Yesterday, 24 January 2017, in audience with the Holy Father, His Highness Fra’ Matthew Festing resigned from the office of Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.

Today, 25 January, the Holy Father accepted his resignation, expressing appreciation and gratitude to Fra’ Festing for his loyalty and devotion to the Successor of Peter, and his willingness to serve humbly the good of the Order and the Church.

The governance of the Order will be undertaken ad interim by the Grand Commander pending the appointment of the Papal Delegate.

NOTE that, as a sovereign entity, there is no provision whatsoever, and no possibility, for a Papal Delegate -- the foundational documents of the Sovereign Order allow for the interim government of the Grand Commander until the election of a new Grand Master. What has happened is a coup d'état. What was the threat that made Grand Master Festing fold so thoroughly? We don't know -- but he should speak up.

Dictionary of Contemporary Theology: "Bergoglianism"


A spiritual disease of Argentinian origin first found in the early twenty-first century and thought to be the result of a localization and intensification of various strains of mid-late twenty-century modernism. Initial symptoms include institutional and ritual iconoclasm, incomprehension of the nature, duties and limits of one’s office, irresponsible utterances in public, incessant nepotism and a propensity gratuitously to insult one’s collaborators, officials and clergy.

URGENT - Bergoglian Persecution Begins: Priest is Suspended a divinis in Colombia for criticizing the new papal doctrine on Marriage and the Eucharist

The document is provided by Rorate's Spanish-language partners "Adelante la Fe" -- and the news is explosive. A priest in the Diocese of Pereira, Colombia, was admonished and suspended by his Bishop because he criticized in public the new doctrine invented by Pope Francis on Marriage and the reception of the Blessed Sacrament.*

Father Luis Alberto Uribe Medina is the victim of this startling act by his bishop, Rigoberto Corredor.

Full document in our own translation below:

DECREE no.1977
Of January 16, 2017
By which a priest is suspended



Bishop of Rockford repeals Summorum Pontificum

Bishop Malloy of Rockford, which is in Illinois in the USA, has sent a rather remarkable letter to his priests. Rorate Caeli received a copy on 16th January, and it is reproduced in full here.

The letter reads, in part, as follows:

As you will recall, at our Presbytery Day in September, I spoke to you about some of the challenges confronting us as priests and as a diocese. I highlighted the particular need for us to have unity in the celebration of the sacraments, especially in the Eucharist. Our unity during the celebration of the Sacred Liturgy is a continuing fulfillment of the prayer of Jesus on Holy Thursday night. On a practical level, the unity of our sacramental celebration strengthens our shared faith and limits confusion among the faithful throughout the Diocese.

Following that talk, I write now to ask for your cooperation on several matters that have since been referred to me in connection with my comments last September:

First, as I noted at that time, we are all aware of the on-going discussion surrounding the celebration of the Mass “ad orientem“. However, for the reasons I discussed at that time, and in order to underscore our unity in prayer and to avoid differences between and even within parishes on this point, I ask that no Masses be celebrated “ad orientem” without my permission.

Second, for similar reasons, in keeping with Art. 5 §1 of Summorum Pontificum, and with due regard to Art. 2 of that same document, Masses are not to be celebrated using the Extraordinary Form without my permission.

"The Lord sent us a treasure to lead us safely home": it's Pope Francis

"Song for Pope Francis composed and performed by Emily Clarke ahead of the 2018 Papal Visit to Ireland."

Malta sinks

Cathedral of the Assumption, Gozo, Malta
In World War II, Malta was described as the 'unsinkable aircraft carrier'. Well, it has sunk now. The Bishops of Malta (both of them) have stated that anyone in an irregular union who feels 'at peace with God' should not be excluded from Holy Communion or from Sacramental Absolution: at least, that's what they seem to say. Readers can judge for themselves.

If, as a result of the process of discernment, undertaken with “humility, discretion and love for the Church and her teaching, in a sincere search for God’s will and a desire to make a more perfect response to it” (AL 300), a separated or divorced person who is living in a new relationship manages, with an informed and enlightened conscience, to acknowledge and believe that he or she are at peace with God, he or she cannot be precluded from participating in the sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist (see AL, notes 336 and 351).


there are complex situations where the choice of living “as brothers and sisters” becomes humanly impossible and give rise to greater harm (see AL, note 329).

I wonder what would happen of a priest decided that an adulterer had not undertaken a process of discernment with the requisite humility? If he'd had humility, but not 'love for the Church'? Or maybe that his 'search for God's will' was not, as required, 'sincere'? Would Archbishop Scicluna congratulate such a priest for his pastoral sensitivity?

Saints of the Old Testament: Sts. Habacuc and Micheas, prophets

Even as the traditional Roman Martyrology yesterday commemorated the heavenly birthday of the prophet St. Malachias, so today the Martyrology again marks the holy deaths of two other Old Testament saints. Heading the list of this day's saints are St. Paul, the first hermit, followed by the abbot St. Maur, disciple of St. Benedict. Third in order for This Day, the Fifteenth of January, we read:

In Judaea, the holy prophets Habacuc and Michaeas, whose bodies were found by divine revelation in the days of Theodosius the Elder.

St. Ambachoum (Habacuc)

St. Augustine: "All Catholics know: Divorce is of the devil!"

At this time of immense doctrinal confusion on the indissolubility of the sacred bond of Holy Matrimony, confusion started and furthered by the uppermost echelon of the hierarchy, let us recall the words of the great Doctor of the Church, St. Augustine, in the readings for Matins of this Second Sunday after the Epiphany (unfortunately partly removed after the 1960/61 rubrical reform), whose Gospel is dedicated to the Wedding Feast of Cana:

Saints of the Old Testament: St. Malachias, prophet

With the conclusion of the Octave of the Epiphany of Our Lord yesterday, the Church now recalls a courageous defender of the doctrine of the Trinity, St. Hilary of Poitiers, and the martyr priest St. Felix of Nola. But third on the list of today's saints in the traditional Roman Martyrology is the heavenly birthday of an Old Testament saint, the holy prophet Malachias:

Vote in our new Poll: What is the true goal of Francis' 2018 "Youth and Vocation" Synod?

The Vatican today released the Pope's letter to "young people" on the 2018 Synod's preparatory document.

We make use of this occasion to ask you what the Pope and his courtly entourage are planning to use the Synod for: If two Synods for "Family" can be used to promote adultery and attack the indissolubility of marriage, what on earth can one expect from a Synod on "Young People, the Faith, and Vocational Discernment"?

January 13: 470 years of the Decree on Justification of the Council of Trent - a Permanent Bulwark againt Protestant Heresy

The Cathedral of San Vigilio, in Trent, home of the
Sixth Session of the Council of Trent (1546-1547), in the morning of January 13, 2017

On this day, exactly 470 years ago, the August Fathers of the Sacrosanct Ecumenical Council of Trent, at the end of the sixth session, issued one of their most decisive and extensive documents, the Decree on Justification.

Justification, of course, had been the central issue of the Protestant heresies ravaging the Church in Europe since the malevolent actions of the renegade monk Martin Luther, thirty years earlier. After long debates, the Conciliar Fathers clarified all points and reaffirmed the unchangeable doctrine of the only Church of Christ on the Salvation of Souls.

The full text of the Decree is available here. The main points dealt with in the Decree can be summarized thus:

1. The Catholic Faith is the foundation of all Justification.

Motu Proprio under Threat: Traditionalists must make so much noise no one would dare touch Summorum Pontificum

Don't touch me - Noli me tangere
This from the latest blog post by Italian vaticanist Sandro Magister (along with Marco Tosatti, the top vaticanist in the current pontificate):

There are those who fear that after the demolition of “Liturgiam Authenticam,” the next objective, of this or another commission, will be the correction of “Summorum Pontificum,” the document with which Benedict XVI liberalized the celebration of the Mass in the ancient rite.

The time to agitate is now: Traditionalists around the world must make clear the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum (which was not an act of "mercy," but a mere recognition of justice and logic) cannot be touched.

Sermon for the Feast of the Holy Family - The Family under the shadow of Amoris Laetitia

Fr. Richard G. Cipolla

This is the first year that the feast of the Holy Family is being celebrated in the context and shadow of Pope Francis’  Apostolic Exhortation,  Amoris Laetitia, the Joy of Love.  The Feast of the Holy Family was added to the Church’s calendar in the first decade of the twentieth century.  To contemplate the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph is indeed a good thing to do within the celebration of the Christmas season.  The bond of love that existed within this totally unique family is an example for every family to emulate.  But, as I have preached about many times, to hold up the Holy Family as a model for the what we can call normal family, is not an easy thing to do.  And when we try to apply our own situation to that of the Holy Family without acknowledging that uniqueness, we are always disappointed.

Radicati Editorial: Why are you shocked with the current situation? They've already changed the MASS!

Editorial: Radicati nella fede, January 2017
Newsletter of the Catholic community of
Vocogno, Diocese of Novara, Italy

[A Vatican II Moment: "African Mass," celebrated in the Archdiocese of Brasilia, Brazil*]

We begin the new year, as always filled with expectations.

Along with these expectations we are also filled with fears, considering the rough waters of confusion we are now submerged in. Confusion, seeing as there is hardly anything left stable in the world and the situation is infinitely worse for us in the Church.

For the Record: Mexican Archbishop orders Last Gospel read in all Sunday Novus Ordo Masses

So, while the "Reform of the Reform" is dead for the universal Church, some particular churches (and no only parishes) may be moving ahead with bringing some elements of Roman Tradition to the new, and made-up artificial rite of Paul VI.

So it is with the Archbishop of Monterrey (Nuevo León state), in Mexico, Abp. Rogelio Cabrera López, who sent the following message to all his priests:

"Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum 2007-2017: 10 Years for Nothing?"

a report by Paix Liturgique

The year 2017 will mark the tenth anniversary of the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum published on 7th of July 2007. This text, which was written by Benedict XVI and came into force on the 14th of September of the same year, reminded Catholics that the traditional missal had never been abrogated and gave, at least theoretically, a greater degree of freedom concerning the celebration of the ancient liturgy.


Guest Op-Ed - The festivals of the Church: The glories of the liturgical calendar

By Veronica A. Arntz

The glorious liturgical calendar reveals the heart of the Church. At the center of the Church’s life, we find profound festivity, for the liturgical year is comprised of many feasts in honor of our Lord, His Blessed Mother, and “the great cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1, RSV). The liturgical year unites us more deeply with the Church, for through it, we enter into the ancient traditions of the Church, alongside the great communion of saints. At this beautiful time in the liturgical year, having just finished the Christmas Octave and as we approach the Feast of the Epiphany, it is fitting to reflect on what the festivity of the Church is, what it means for her members and how it influences man’s relationship with God.

Unconquered and Unconquerable

Mother and Teacher,
Beautiful beyond words,
Pure Bride,
Never vanquished,
Never conquered!
Our love is yours,
One, Holy, Catholic,
and Apostolic Church!

Field and Fountain, Moor and Mountain

They're coming!

Bishop Schneider: "I have asked Msgr. Fellay not to delay his acceptance any longer"

“The movement to restore the traditional Mass is the work of the Holy Spirit, and is unstoppable”

Our partners at Adelante La Fe (Rorate in Spanish) today published an exclusive interview with His Excellency Bishop Athanasius Schneider. The answers he gives are very blunt and bold -- even for the great bishop. It's pretty clear even by just skimming his answers that he believes the time has come for the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX). 


“There are many places where priests act more like Protestant ministers than Catholic priests”

“There are families that must travel more than 100 km (60 mi) so that they can go to a dignified Mass and hear sound doctrine”

“The faithful must ask the priests for kneelers so that they can kneel”

“We have a eucharistic-heart disease, and as long as we fail to heal it, the whole body will remain ill and will not produce fruit”

“In today’s climate, it’s a true miracle that we have vocations”

“Gender ideology is a depravity, a final form of Marxism”

“If they can, parents should withdraw their children from schools where they are taught gender ideology”

German Bishop: Communion for non-Catholics married to Catholics Possible

From the official website of the German Bishops' Conference:

Hope for shared Holy Communion for married couples

Rorate City and State Statistics for 2016: Top 10 cities, states, and countries

Thanks to all our readers for their interest during 2016, our best year yet!

We have two interesting lists of the 10 cities that sent us most visitors. First, an overall look:

Reminder: Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society

This is our monthly reminder to please enroll Souls of the Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society. We now stand at 78 priests saying weekly or monthly traditional Latin Masses for the Souls. We are grateful to our partners at Adelante La Fe (Rorate in Spanish) who added two new South American priests to the Society's roster this month!

** Click here to download a "fillable" PDF Mass Card to give to the loved ones of the Souls you enroll. It's free for anyone to use. **

Priests: The Souls still need more of you saying Mass for them! Please email me to offer your services. There's nothing special involved -- all you need to do is offer a weekly or monthly TLM with the intention: "For the Souls enrolled in the Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society." And we will always keep you completely anonymous unless you request otherwise. 

How to enroll souls: please email me at and submit as follows: "Name, State, Country." If you want to enroll entire families, simply write in the email: "The Jones family, Ohio, USA". Individual names are preferred. Be greedy -- send in as many as you wish and forward this posting to friends as well.

2017 - The prophetic mission of Fatima is not complete

In seven years you will return here to celebrate the centenary of the first visit made by the Lady “come from heaven”, the Teacher who introduced the little seers to a deep knowledge of the Love of the Blessed Trinity and led them to savour God himself as the most beautiful reality of human existence. This experience of grace made them fall in love with God in Jesus, so much so that Jacinta could cry out: “How much I delight in telling Jesus that I love him! When I tell him this often, I feel as if I have a fire in my breast, yet it does not burn me”. And Francisco could say: “What I liked most of all was seeing Our Lord in that light which Our Mother put into our hearts. I love God so much!” (Memoirs of Sister Lúcia, I, 42 and 126).