Rorate Caeli

Fontgombault Sermon for the Feast of Corpus Christi: "The Eucharist is not a right."

Sermon of the Right Reverend Dom Jean Pateau
Abbot of Our Lady of Fontgombault
Fontgombault, May 31st, 2018
Hoc est corpus meum…This is My body…

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
My dearly beloved Sons,

After the feast of Pentecost, when the coming of the Spirit fulfilled the Father’s promise, according to which the Apostles would not remain orphans, after meditating last Sunday the mystery of the Holy Trinity, the feast of Corpus Christi contemplates again the mystery of the Blessed Eucharist. We have already commemorated the institution of this Sacrament during the Mass in Cœna Domini,on Maundy Thursday, at the beginning of the Triduum. 

As she places us again before this mystery, the Church presents the Sacrament in itself, and no longer in its institution. Which lights might we hope to get on such a great mystery? Before God’s mysteries, there are two temptations, neither of which respects the mysteries. This word, “mystery,” indicates that beyond what is visible, the reality of the Eucharist contains an invisible and impossible to understand dimension.

De Mattei: Italy is changing, but Mattarella is unaware of it

Roberto de Mattei
Corrispondenza Romana
May 30, 2018

On Sunday May 27th,  Professor Giuseppe Conte, appointed by the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella to form a government, arrived at the “Palazzo del Quirinale” to present the list of his ministers, fruit of an intense work of collaboration between the political representatives of the two main parties in Parliament: “Movimento Cinque Stelle” and “La Lega”. 

Sermon for the Feast of Saint Joan of Arc: The Most Extraordinary Person the Human Race Ever Produced

Sermon for Feast of Joan of Arc

St Agnes, Brooklyn
May 30, 2018

“Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what was spoken to her from the Lord”. Luke 1:45

There is a painting in the Metropolitan Museum of Art that I discovered many years ago.  Whenever I am in the Museum I visit this painting.  The painting affected me deeply the first time I saw it just wandering through the European painting section.  It affects me so every time I see it.  I have brought many people to see this painting, which no one seems to know.  The painting is St. Joan of Arc listening to Voices by the late nineteenth century French artist, Jules Bastien-Lepage.  It shows the young peasant girl Joan in her parents’ garden in Domremy, a village on the Meuse in Northeastern France.  The foliage is painted vividly in what was known as the naturalistic style  which led into Impressionism.  The expression on the young girl’s face is of someone who is listening intently and yet peacefully.  In the painting as well are the ghostly figures of the three saints who spoke to her during her brief life:  St Michael, St. Margaret and St. Catherine.  She called them the Voices.  The painting is remarkable.

In the Heart of the Church, a New Carmel and Center of Traditional Liturgy

It gives us great joy to be able to share once again Carmelite good news, at the request of the community itself. Please pray for these sisters and the success of their noble project. 

A New Carmel

To continue and perpetuate the vital work of love in the heart of the Church, a new beautiful Monastery of Discalced Carmelite Nuns is being constructed ( in the quiet rural farmland of Fairfield, Pennsylvania. This beautiful new property will provide a fitting home for an interior blossoming of monastic life and will be ready to receive a constant stream of vocations zealous for God and His Church.

Scandal: A Bishop "Married" with Children Will Be Created Cardinal by Francis

UPDATE: Bishop Ticona has categorically denied the claims. Click here for the latest, including his denial

Scandalous news first broken by our Spanish-language partners at Adelante la Fe. The information, it was said, has been appropriately and thoroughly checked from multiple sources on the ground.

On May 2th, 2018, Pope Francis announced that in the consistory to be celebrated on June 29 this year, Feast of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, he will raise to the cardinalship Bp. Toribio Ticona, titular bishop of Timici and prelate emeritus of Corocoro, Bolivia. The 81-year-old bishop was born on April 25, 1937. He was ordered priest in 1967 and consecrated as Timici's bishop and axiliary bishop of Potosí, Bolivia, on May 31st, 1986. In 1992 he was appointed prelate of Corocoro, retiring in 2012.

During his frequent visits to Oruro at the beginning of his office, the then bishop of Oruro and future Third World ideologist cardinal, Julio Terrazas Sandoval, CSsR, boasted visiting Oruro's bishop and called him his "padrino" or sponsor, since he said he had been promoted to the bishopric thanks to Terrazas,who on several occasions as president of the Bolivian Conference of Bishops, and obviously was very influential on the other bishops and the apostoloic Nunciature.

IRELAND: a post-mortem examination - by Roberto de Mattei (Revisited)

Almost exactly three years ago, in May 2015, following the "same-sex marriage" referendum in Ireland, Roberto de Mattei made his "post-mortem examination" of the formerly Catholic powerhouse.

On this sad Saturday, as vote tallies confirm that an overwhelming majority of Irish voters chose to remove the 8th amendment of the Irish Constitution, we take a moment to revisit his piece.

What did the 8th amendment say exactly? These words:

The State acknowledges the right to life of the unborn and, with due regard to the equal right to life of the mother, guarantees in its laws to respect, and, as far as practicable, by its laws to defend and vindicate that right.

Beautiful, noble, sound, correct, Catholic: all that Ireland has ceased to be.


IRELAND: a post-mortem examination

Roberto de Mattei
Corrispondeza Romana
May 27, 2015

In his masterpiece “The Soul of the Apostolate”, Dom Jean-Baptiste Chautard (1858-1935), Trappist Abbot of Sept-Fons, expressed this maxim: “A holy priest coincides with a fervent populace; a fervent priest - a pious populace; a pius priest - an honest populace; an honest priest - an impious populace” (Italian version, Rome 1967, p. 64). If it is true that there is always a degree less in the spiritual life between the clergy and the Catholic people, after the vote in Dublin on May 22, we should add: “An impious priest coincides with an apostate populace.”

Interview with Polish Franciscan Theologian Maksym Adam Kopiec on Veritatis Splendor

Rorate is pleased to republish this interview, conducted by Aurelio Porfiri, which appeared today at O Clarim.

Interview with Polish Franciscan Theologian Maksym Adam Kopiec on Veritatis Splendor

by Aurelio Porfiri

We live in times of great relativism, times in which there seems to be no objective, firm, immutable truth. But it is not so and it is important that there are voices that try to confirm more and more this important truth: the truth exists, and for us it is called Jesus Christ. This is not simply an option in the landscape of thought, but it should be the alpha and the omega of our way of being in the world. If the truth is not solid and objective, then everything is really allowed, everything is possible, everything is justifiable. It does not matter that we are limited, sinful, fallible. What matters is knowing that there is a firm house on the rock to return to.

De Mattei: Building the Future on the Natural and Divine Law

Roberto de Mattei
Corrispondenza Romana
May 23. 2018

Forty years ago, on May 22 1978, under the name of Law 194 for the termination of pregnancy, state murder was introduced in Italy by a Christian Democrat ruling class.  Murder, since Law 194 establishes the legitimacy of suppressing an innocent human-being in their mother’s womb;  it is state murder, since this crime is approved, organized and financed by the Italian State; it is mass-murder, since there have been around six million victims of abortion in Italy, according to official estimates; it is a figure far superior to the total  number of deaths in wars and natural disasters since the birth of the Italian State (1861) until today  

Emma Bonino - who along with Marco Panella fought rabidly for this law to be approved - in a video-interview on May 22nd 2018 for La Repubblica, said that Law 194 “functioned”.  That is, like a guillotine or a crematory-oven function, with not a word of compassion for those who are killed.  Still – Bonino added – after forty years “a review”  is required, that is to say, to improve this law, as something still doesn’t work well. What is the problem then?

It is the high rate of conscientious objectors among doctors, which is impeding the full and thorough application of the law. Bonino is not interested in knowing the reasons for this objection of conscience; what is important [for her]is that the laws function, that the slaughter continues and so she hopes for greater diffusion of pharmacological abortion by means of the abortion pill RU 486, which few still have recourse to. Emma Bonino, like many abortionists, consider the baby a growth on the mother’s body, or if they admit that it is human life developing for nine months in the mother’s womb, they have the vision of the interests of the State, of race, of the proletariat class, or of the single individual, which justify the killing of an innocent human-being.  This vision has only one name, which ought to be proclaimed in clear letters : barbarism. 

Bonino doesn’t even realize that something is changing in the world, that today it is not the feminist processions filling the streets, but the marches for Life, like those that took place in Rome on May 19th and in Argentina on May 20th. The mainstream media ignores these events, but a protest which springs from the natural law, engraved in indelible characters in the heart of every man, cannot be stopped. Under pressure by the pro-life movements in the United States, President Trump, has done more [for pro-life] in less than a year than his predecessors did in the previous thirty years. Even Communist China, after the failure of the disastrous one-child-only policy, has decided that by the beginning of 2019, the limits imposed until now on births will be abolished.

In Italy a new government is being formed. It is lamentable the fact that in the so-called “contract of government” the great themes of life and family are absent, or addressed only under the strictly economic aspect. And yet, as Virginia Coda Nunziante noted, if the language of economics is the only one that is understood, it would be sufficient to begin removing the 200-300 million Euros in public expense spent every year in the killing of our children and use the money to make the health system more functional, not the abortuary.  One of the reasons for the crisis in our country is the demographic collapse due to abortion and contraception, which in turn are the fruits of a hedonistic, relativist culture. 

We will never be able to find a way out of the crisis if the conditions of the culture of death are not reversed. This  is the message that comes from the March For Life and other recent initiatives, like Citizengo and ProVita Onlus, but also by the efforts of many young people, groups and associations, who are not surrendering, who will keep on going, and may the breakdown in the Italy of today, be replaced by an Italy which rediscovers the Divine and Natural Law upon which to build its future.

Translation: Francesca Romana

Guest Op-Ed: The Spiritual Life, Silence, and the Sacred Liturgy

By Veronica A. Arntz

“But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you” (Matt 6:6, RSV-2CE).

These words from our Lord direct us how to pray. The prayer that is most pleasing to our Lord is not that which is loud, ostentatious, or even “visible” through spoken words. Rather, it is the prayer that we make from our hearts, the silent prayer that comes directly from our souls. Our Lord desires that we give ourselves to Him through our interior prayer. While vocal and mental prayer that comes right from our heart, the highest prayer, which is meant to be normative for all, is contemplative prayer—a union between beloved and Lover, a prayer in which the soul simply “is” with the One she loves the most.

Pontifical High Mass video exceeds 26K views

Coverage of the massive pontifical High Mass offered last month in Washington, D.C., highlighted the number of young people in attendance at the Mass offered by Archbishop Alexander Sample at the basilica shrine.  The latest piece ran in Corrispondenza Romana, published in Italian here.

One of our readers graciously translated the article to English, shared below:

In memoriam: Dario Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos (1929-2018)
Throwback post: "All the parishes" should have the Traditional Latin Mass!

Dario Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos passed away on the 18th of May, 2018, according to the Colombian Bishops' Conference. He was 88. We ask all of our readers to pray and have Masses said for the repose of his soul.

Before going to Rome to head the Congregation for the Clergy, he was a bishop in his native Colombia for 25 years. The impact that he made can be seen in the glowing tribute (Cardinal who humbled a drugs baron) written for him in 1999 by his notoriously Leftist compatriot Gabriel Garcia Marquez. It includes the legendary story of his confrontation with Pablo Escobar. 

It is far more likely though that he will long be remembered for his many words and deeds on behalf of the cause of what he himself called the "Gregorian Rite", and for the faithful attached to it. He served as President of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei" from 2000 to 2009, and arguably was its most effective President ever. At the very least he was the one most oustpoken in defending the rights of Traditionalists in the Church, and the Gregorian Rite itself. It may very well be said that he was the man behind the eventual promulgation of Summorum Pontificum by Pope Benedict XVI in 2007. 

Upcoming Lectures by Dr. Kwasniewski in Canada — Award Ceremony for Bishop Schneider in Winnipeg

The end of May will see a number of lectures and Latin liturgies of interest to tradition-loving Catholics in the cities of Ottawa and Winnipeg.

Bishops defend Church teaching on birth control

It is sad when the above headline is news.  Yet, it is almost impossible to find bishops (or priests) -- outside of traditional Latin Mass circles -- talking about this subject.  We commend the Kazakh bishops for issuing the following reaffirmation of Church teaching:

Pastoral letter on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the encyclical Humanae vitae

Praised be Our Lord Jesus Christ! Dear brothers and sisters in Christ! The current year is marked by the memorable event of the 50th anniversary of the encyclical Humanae vitae, in which Blessed Paul VI confirmed the teaching of the constant Magisterium of the Church regarding the transmission of human life. The Bishops and Ordinaries of Kazakhstan want to take this favorable occasion in order to honor the memory and the enduring importance of this encyclical.

During the last meeting of all our priests and religious sisters in Almaty, there were thorough discussions on the theme of the preparation of young people to the sacrament of marriage. There was made the proposal to transmit to young people the main truths of the Magisterium of the Church with regard to the Christian marriage and the sanctity of human life from the moment of its conception.   

We proclaim with the voice of the Magisterium of the Church as we can learn it in the encyclical Humanae vitae and in the documents of other Roman Pontiffs the following demanding truths of Christ’s “sweet yoke and light burden” (Math. 11:30):

Guest op-ed on the blasphemous "MetGala": How Low We Have Come

by Monsignor X

Many readers will be familiar with the 1963 Otto Preminger film: "The Cardinal." It takes some license with the eponymous novel of Henry Morton Robinson, but besides being an excellent film, it recreates exactly so much of the beauty of the Liturgy of the Catholic Church on the very eve of its, let us say, "renewal." One of the most ancient and beautfiul ceremonies of the Traditional Liturgy is that of Epsicopal Consecration, and parts of it are beautifully recreated in Preminger's movie.

For the Record: Cardinal Eijk's warning words on Pope Francis' lack of clarity

The following letter by the primate of the Netherlands, Cardinal Willem Eijk, Archbishop of Utrecht, was published a few days ago. It deals with a matter of the gravest importance which we have often discussed here: the idea, proposed by several German bishops, of Communion being given to non-Catholics (specifically, non-Catholic spouses of Catholic faithful).

Some good German bishops appealed to the Holy See expecting the clarity that is Rome's essential mission to provide. Clarity and firmness on what Christ and His Church have always taught is the whole point of the very existence of the office of the Successor of Saint Peter. 

Instead, there was waffling: despite the clear response of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Pope, in his meeting with German bishops, remanded the question back to them and asked them to sort the matter out, unanimously...

The letter by Cardinal Eijk on the matter (published in Dutch yesterday on the Archdiocesan website) is a warning of the greatest gravity as well as a breath of fresh air in these times of trouble and confusion, perilous times for the Catholic Faith. It will one day have a high place in the history of these strange days.


The German bishops’ conference voted by a large majority in favor of directives which entail that a Protestant married to a Catholic may receive the Eucharist after meeting a number of conditions: he must have carried out an examination of conscience with a priest or with another person with pastoral responsibilities; he must have affirmed the faith of the Catholic Church, as well as having wished to put an end to “serious spiritual distress” and to have a “desire to satisfy a longing for the Eucharist.” 

Announcing a new contemplative religious community of men

Rorate is pleased to share this important announcement from Pennsylvania. We ask our readers to keep the hermits in their prayers and to spread word of this order among men who may have an eremitical vocation.

In Cujus Conspectu: A New Contemplative Religious Community of Men

Vivit Dominus Deus Israel, in cujus conspectu sto (3 Kings 17:1). His Excellency, Bishop Ronald Gainer of the Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania has warmly given his blessing to a new religious community of men, the Hermits of Our Lady of Mount Carmel (, erecting the community as an Association of the Faithful on February 22nd, the 15th anniversary of His Excellency’s episcopal consecration. 

This community observes the eremitical Carmelite charism according to the life of the original community of hermits on Mount Carmel and the primitive Carmelite Rule written for them by St. Albert of Jerusalem in the early 1200s. Strictly following the Rule in its original character of eremitical contemplative religious life, they are reviving the life of those ancient religious, who “in imitation of that holy anchorite the prophet Elijah, led solitary lives” (Jacques de Vitry, Bishop of Acre, History of Jerusalem). “Let each stay in his cell or nearby it, day and night meditating on the law of the Lord and keeping vigil in prayers unless occupied by other just occasions” (Primitive Carmelite Rule of St. Albert). 

SERMON for the Feast of Saint Pius V, the Great Reformer - Fr. Cipolla

Sermon for the Feast of St. Pius V

Preached at the Lepanto Youth Rally
Waterbury, Connecticut
5 May, 2018

There is a church in Rome not too far from the train station, Termini. Its exterior looks like many churches in Rome, white marble, baroque style.  The fame of this church is not because of its rather over the top late baroque interior that leaves nothing to the imagination.  It is famous because of the statue in one of its side chapels of St Teresa of Avila sculpted by the amazing baroque sculptor, Gian Lorenzo Bernini.  The title of the sculpture is St Teresa in Ecstasy, a mind-blowing piece of reality sculpted in marble that catches the moment in which St Teresa is seized by the love of God and pierced by the arrow of the infinite love of God. Once you see this amazing work you never forget it.

But what interests us here on this particular day is the painting above the altar rail in this church.  The church is called Santa Maria della Vittoria, Our Lady of Victory. The painting depicts the battle of Lepanto.  This youth conference is called Lepanto.  I suspect that many of you hear have never heard of the battle of Lepanto.  You have not heard of it for two reasons:  you know generation knows little history, especially of the West, and you are mostly products of a 1970s vapid Catholicism that in its own way denies the central role of history in the Catholic faith.  The youth rallies of post-Vatican II Catholicism are either pale imitations of Protestant “pump them full of Jesus” emotionalism or the product of a New Church, a Church lacking any real connection to the history of the Church of 2000 years and wedded to an ahistorical and sentimental and deliberate forgetfulness of the essence of the Catholic faith.

Will the real Pope Pius V please come forward?

It was Professor Lauren Pristas, a careful scholar of the orations of the Mass (especially collects, secrets, postcommunions), who first drew my attention and that of many others to the enormous differences in the lex orandi between the old and new missals—a difference that bears very obviously on the lex credendi of the Church.

Guest Op-Ed - Threefold unity in the Church: Strength against the temptations of the Devil

By Veronica A. Arntz

In his reflection on the Fourth Sunday after Easter, Dom Prosper Guéranger discusses man’s participation in the Church of Christ, which is made possible through grace. He writes, “The Holy Ghost tells us, in the sacred Volume, that a threefold cord is not easily broken (Ecc 4:12).

Now we have such a one; and it keeps us in the glorious unity of the Church: hierarchy, dogma, and sacraments, all contribute to make us one Body” (The Liturgical Year, Paschal Time-Book II, vol. VIII, 228). How is it that the Church is united in these three ways? Indeed, Christ has established His Church such that, if one of these is weakened or not present at all, then the whole Church in her human members becomes weak (1 Cor 12:26, RSV-2CE). To understand the unity that Christ desires for His Church, let us explore the threefold unity of hierarchy, dogma, and sacraments.           

For the Record: Diocese of Buffalo bars SSPX couple from being Godparents

There's not much else to say here that the Society doesn't spell out clearly in their sad, disturbing report, pasted below. Hope Sister Regina -- interim chancellor of the Diocese???!!! -- will hear from Rome soon:

A married couple who attend the SSPX chapel in NY were denied the ability by the local Diocese to be Baptismal Godparents for a relative's baby.

An unfortunate and unsettling incident concerning the Society of Saint Pius X has unfolded over the past several weeks in Buffalo, New York. When officials of the Diocese of Buffalo learned that a married couple attending the local SSPX mission had been asked to participate as Godparents in their niece’s scheduled baptism on Sunday, April 15, 2018, they sprung into action.

Mr. and Mrs. X of Batavia, parishioners of the Society’s Our Lady of the Rosary Chapel in Buffalo, were informed by the diocese that they could not act as Godparents at the baptism. Instead, they were told they could assist only as “witnesses” (according to Canon 874 §2). The decision was made by Sister Regina Murphy, SSMN, interim chancellor of the Diocese and confirmed by Buffalo’s auxiliary, Bishop Edward Grosz.

Guest article — The Council’s Constitution on the Liturgy: Reform or revolution?

Rorate is happy to make available an English translation of a lecture given in Vienna by Wolfram Schrems on April 2, 2017, at the launch of the German edition of Peter Kwasniewski's Resurgent in the Midst of Crisis. Schrems is a theologian, philosopher, catechist and pro-life activist and a signatory of the Filial Correction. The text below is a thoroughly revised version of the original presentation (a video of which may be found here). The author would like to thank Mr. Stuart Chessman of the Society of St. Hugh of Cluny for the translation into English.

The Council’s Constitution on the Liturgy: Reform or Revolution? 
Wolfram Schrems
Vienna, April 2, 2017

Reverend Fathers, Ladies and Gentlemen, and Dearest Friends,

Buy a CD, build a church and priory!

Long-time readers know we adore the sisters of the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles -- and that we personally contribute to them. We say that because we want you to know we are investing in the places we're asking you, our readers, to prayerfully consider investing. And make no mistake: Helping these great sisters is an investment in eternity!

Now, you can donate to them, help them build their new church and priory, and receive their newest CD -- music so beautiful you must hear it to believe it. Please check out the video, below. While it only costs $15 to purchase the CD, we urge you to give more on top of that, and help move this critical construction project along.

Because of the generosity of the faithful, and many of our readers, the work of the new church and priory has progressed well. 

Reminder: Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society

This is our monthly reminder to please enroll Souls of the Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society. We now stand at 85 priests saying weekly or monthly traditional Latin Masses for the Souls. Come on Fathers, let's get this to 100! 

** 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.

May, a Very Special Month:


Jesus, Lily of the Valleys
Mary, Queen of May
Joseph, Patron of Laborers

Orate pro nobis!


Chalice - Lily. The chalice is the lily, stylized and adapted to our use, and which, born from water, is proper for us to take to our lips.

The lily, and especially the water-lily, also called lotus or nenuphar, has always had a peculiar place in the symbolism of all religions. It projects its roots to substantial and deep regions, separated from our sight by these fluid, contemplative, mirror-like layers which are the domain of that which is contingent, unstable, of illusion and of this "time", of this reflection which relates to several circumstances.