Rorate Caeli

Special Series: "1919—2019 A Centenary Meditation on the Church and a Quest for Purification Gone Mad"
- Part I: The Peace, the War, and the Longing for Purification

A Centenary Meditation on the Church and a Quest for “Purification” Gone Mad

A Series by Professor John C. Rao, DPhil


Part I: The Peace, the War, and the Longing for Purification 

Despite its claims of openness to everyone and anything, friendliness to time gone by is sorely lacking in our pluralist society, and this for very good reason indeed. Pluralism needs to destroy knowledge of the past in order to survive. Historical wisdom makes the depth and longevity of the intellectual, spiritual, and practical divisions in our daily life all too clear to those seeking to learn its lessons. Such wisdom diverts attention away from the only acceptable pluralist solution to human problems: the satisfaction of those material passions to whose endless permutations, monotonous as they ultimately really are, fallen man in his dullness seems ceaselessly attracted.

Unfortunately, we Catholics living in an all-encompassing pluralist society are ourselves subject to its soporific effects. We also have a tendency to don an historical blindfold, to focus on immediate material concerns and their time-bound explanations of current events, and, thus, to replace real intellectual judgments with shallow, pluralist-approved mantras. The result is that our own appreciation of the causes of our present ecclesiastical debacle is both too mundane as well as much too limited historically in its scope.And, sadly, this prevents us from dealing with its horrors effectively.

Two Events in Norcia this Summer

Two important events take place in Norcia this summer:

Francis' Pearls of Wisdom - "Abortion? Your child is in heaven!"; "We need sex education for children!"

From the interview granted by Francis to reporters on his flight back from Panama to Rome:

Lena Klimkeit, DPA: Holy Father, during the Stations of the Cross on Friday a young man spoke very strong words about abortion. I want to repeat them for a moment. ‘There is a tomb that cries out to heaven and denounces the terrible cruelty of humanity. It is the tomb that opens in the womb of the mothers from which innocent life is plucked. May God grant us to truly humanize ourselves, to defend life fervently, to make the laws that kill life not feel erased forever.’ This is a very radical position, in my opinion. I wonder and would like to ask you if this position also respects the suffering of women in this situation and if it corresponds to your message of mercy.

Pope Francis: The message of mercy is for everyone. Also for the human person who is in gestation. It is for everyone. After this failure, there is mercy as well. But a difficult mercy because the problem is not in giving forgiveness. The problem is to accompany a woman who has become aware of an abortion.

The Doctrine of Papal Infallibility

In the following lecture Prof. John Rao lectures on Vatican I, and gives a lucid explanation of the true meaning of papal infallibility.

Events: Upcoming Lectures in Norwalk and New York City

The Society of St. Hugh of Cluny is sponsoring two February events in the NYC area. The first is a lecture at St. Mary's in Norwalk by Dr. Peter Kwasniewski on Thursday, February 14th at 6:30 pm, preceded by Vespers at 5:30 pm. The second is the Second Annual Lepanto Conference on Saturday, February 16th, opening with a Pontifical Mass at St. Vincent Ferrer's and continuing with lectures by Fr. Gerald Murray, Dr. Peter Kwasniewski, and Fr. Richard Cipolla. 

Full details may be found in the posters below.

Op-Ed: A French Historian muses about the "Anglicanization" of the Catholic Church: A Priest Responds

Paul VI is paid a "solemn visit" by the high Anglican minister of Canterbury, March 23, 1966 

French historian Luc Perrin, a Professor at the University of Strasbourg, and a well-known commentator of Catholic matters, published a long comment at the French Traditional Catholic page "Le Forum Catholique", in which he asked if the Catholic Church is going through a process of "Anglicanization".

Our Contributor Fr. Richard Cipolla, DPhil, thought this was an interesting exercise and penned a response.

First, Professor Perrin's dubium:

I am submitting this reflection to the wisdom of the reader: this idea has been running around in my head since the annus terribilus of 2018 at least.

There were various theological elements of Catholicism that were the subject of discussion before 2013, but it seems to me—some will disagree on this point, but this is not what I am talking about—that in these discussions the magisterium of Vatican II and the post-conciliar developments until 2013 defended a hermeneutic of reform within a search for continuity, rejecting the hermeneutics of rupture in a direct and recurring manner (this is true for Paul VI, John Paul II, and Benedict XVI, in whose allocution of December 22, 2005 was the last to formalize this insistence on continuity.)

Traditional Catholics and the Traditional Mass at World Youth Day in Panama: a Video Report by Catholic News Service

The official news service of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Catholic News Service (CNS), published this video about Traditional Catholics and the Traditional Mass during World Youth Day, in Panama.

We thank CNS - and also Juventutem for organizing this refuge for Traditional Catholics.

Watch video below:

New 2019 Ordo app for traditional Missal and Breviary now available

We asked our old friend Louis Tofari of Romanitas Press to write a post for our readers when we saw his great new, inexpensive app for priests and laymen. See below from Louis:

The 2019 Ordo for the traditional (1962) Roman Missal and Breviary is now available again from Romanitas Press as mobile apps for both Android and Apple devices.

This digital version of the printed Ordo for mobile devices is not only handy for the traveling clergy who follow the traditional missal and breviary, but also for the laity as a liturgical calendar! 

Report: Solemn Traditional Mass in Bridgeport Cathedral

For the first time since the imposition of the Novus Ordo Mass on the Catholic Church in 1970 the Traditional Roman Rite was celebrated in St. Augustine Cathedral in Bridgeport, Connecticut. 

A Votive Mass of Peace was celebrated on the Anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision made abortion legal in the United States.  

The pastor of the Cathedral Parish, Fr. Michael Novajosky, was the celebrant and preacher.  The deacon was Fr. Greg Markey, and the Subdeacon was Fr. Richard Cipolla.  

Deo gratias!

De Mattei: Martyrs of the Reform of the Church

Roberto de Mattei
Corrispondenza Romana
January 23, 2019

The Mutilation and the Murder of the Deacon Arialdo

Also the reform of the Church has its martyrs. Among them are Saints Arialdo (+1066) and Erlembald (+1075), leaders of the “Pataria”, a lay movement in the XI century which aimed at the restoration of morality in the diocese of Milan, one of the most corrupt in Italy.

Simony and Nicolaism were the two plagues afflicting the Church at that time.  Simony was the pretense of buying and selling clerical offices; Nicolaism, was the practice of taking wives and mistresses by bishops and priests. However, the most shameful expression of moral dissoluteness was sodomy, which, as St. Peter Damian writes, raged “like a bloodthirsty beast inside the sheepfold of Christ” (Liber Gomorrhianus, tr. it. Fiducia, Roma 2015, p. 41).  These vices were so deeply-rooted in northern Italy as to constitute general praxis.

Traditional Retreat for Men in New Jersey - Feb. 15-17

[click to enlarge image]
Father Hernan Ducci of the Fraternity of Saint Joseph the Guardian will preach a retreat for men on Septuagesima weekend based on the Ignatian Exercises, at the Church of Saint John the Baptist, 1282 Yardville-Allentown Road, Allentown, N. J. The Spiritual Exercises comprise an ordered series of meditations and contemplations born from the profound spiritual experience St Ignatius, gained from his conversion and his time as the first Superior General of the Society of Jesus. These exercises purpose to help the retreatant discern God’s will for his own life.
The retreat will begin on the early afternoon of Friday, February 15 and finish on the afternoon of Sunday February 17, with lunch (President's day weekend).

Louis XVI, King, Martyr: a Catholic going to death and His Last Will and Testament

Procession to eternity

On January 20, 1793, the National Convention condemned Louis XVI to death, his execution scheduled for the next day. Louis spent that evening saying goodbye to his wife and children. The following day, January 21, dawned cold and wet. Louis arose at five. At eight o'clock a guard of 1,200 horsemen arrived to escort the former king on a two-hour carriage ride to his place of execution. Accompanying Louis, at his invitation, was a priest, Henry Essex Edgeworth, an Englishman living in France. Edgeworth recorded the event and we join his narrative as he and the fated King enter the carriage to begin their journey:

"The King, finding himself seated in the carriage, where he could neither speak to me nor be spoken to without witness, kept a profound silence. I presented him with my breviary, the only book I had with me, and he seemed to accept it with pleasure: he appeared anxious that I should point out to him the psalms that were most suited to his situation, and he recited them attentively with me. The gendarmes, without speaking, seemed astonished and confounded at the tranquil piety of their monarch, to whom they doubtless never had before approached so near.

The procession lasted almost two hours; the streets were lined with citizens, all armed, some with pikes and some with guns, and the carriage was surrounded by a body of troops, formed of the most desperate people of Paris. As another precaution, they had placed before the horses a number of drums, intended to drown any noise or murmur in favour of the King; but how could they be heard? Nobody appeared either at the doors or windows, and in the street nothing was to be seen, but armed citizens - citizens, all rushing towards the commission of a crime, which perhaps they detested in their hearts.

The carriage proceeded thus in silence to the Place de Louis XV, and stopped in the middle of a large space that had been left round the scaffold: this space was surrounded with cannon, and beyond, an armed multitude extended as far as the eye could reach. As soon as the King perceived that the carriage stopped, he turned and whispered to me, 'We are arrived, if I mistake not.' My silence answered that we were. One of the guards came to open the carriage door, and the gendarmes would have jumped out, but the King stopped them, and leaning his arm on my knee, 'Gentlemen,' said he, with the tone of majesty, 'I recommend to you this good man; take care that after my death no insult be offered to him - I charge you to prevent it.'… As soon as the King had left the carriage, three guards surrounded him, and would have taken off his clothes, but he repulsed them with haughtiness- he undressed himself, untied his neckcloth, opened his shirt, and arranged it himself. The guards, whom the determined countenance of the King had for a moment disconcerted, seemed to recover their audacity. They surrounded him again, and would have seized his hands. 'What are you attempting?' said the King, drawing back his hands. 'To bind you,' answered the wretches. 'To bind me,' said the King, with an indignant air. 'No! I shall never consent to that: do what you have been ordered, but you shall never bind me. . .'

The path leading to the scaffold was extremely rough and difficult to pass; the King was obliged to lean on my arm, and from the slowness with which he proceeded, I feared for a moment that his courage might fail; but what was my astonishment, when arrived at the last step, I felt that he suddenly let go my arm, and I saw him cross with a firm foot the breadth of the whole scaffold; silence, by his look alone, fifteen or twenty drums that were placed opposite to me; and in a voice so loud, that it must have been heard it the Pont Tournant, I heard him pronounce distinctly these memorable words: 'I die innocent of all the crimes laid to my charge; I Pardon those who have occasioned my death; and I pray to God that the blood you are going to shed may never be visited on France.'

He was proceeding, when a man on horseback, in the national uniform, and with a ferocious cry, ordered the drums to beat. Many voices were at the same time heard encouraging the executioners. They seemed reanimated themselves, in seizing with violence the most virtuous of Kings, they dragged him under the axe of the guillotine, which with one stroke severed his head from his body. All this passed in a moment. The youngest of the guards, who seemed about eighteen, immediately seized the head, and showed it to the people as he walked round the scaffold; he accompanied this monstrous ceremony with the most atrocious and indecent gestures. At first an awful silence prevailed; at length some cries of 'Vive la Republique!' were heard. By degrees the voices multiplied and in less than ten minutes this cry, a thousand times repeated became the universal shout of the multitude, and every hat was in the air."

[References: Cronin, Vincent, Louis and Antoinete (1975); Edgeworth, Henry in Thompson, J.M., English Witnesses of the French Revolution (1938, Memoirs originally published 1815).]



In the name of the Very holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Ghost.

Event: Seventh Annual Sacred Liturgy Conference, May 28-31, 2019, in Spokane, Washington

Registration is now open for the 7th annual Sacred Liturgy Conference, hosted this year by the Diocese of Spokane.

Schola Cantus Angelorum is pleased to announce the seventh annual Sacred Liturgy Conference, to be held in Spokane Washington from May 28 to 31, 2019. It will take place at the state-of-the-art Hemmingson Center on the campus of Gonzaga University. The liturgies will be held at the beautiful nearby Churches of St Aloysius and the Cathedral of Our Lady of Lourdes. 

St Aloysius

Papally Approved? Unexpectedly, a New Bishop for the Society of Saint Pius X

Just a couple of weeks ago, Rorate posted an analysis of Pope Francis' moves regarding the Society of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX): The Vatican and the SSPX - Prospects for 2019.

In it, our guest contributor revealed that the Pope and the SSPX are fast reaching a full regularization, but "by installments".

Along with the abolition of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, signed on January 17, and that also signals a path of "regularization by installments" of the SSPX, another piece of news dated from that same day also made clear what is going on.

From French magazine Monde & Vie:

Apostolic Letter Abolishing the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei

Following a historical introduction, the norms of the new Motu proprio published today abolish the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei (PCED) and transfer all its powers and assets to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), which shall establish a new specific internal section to deal with the former PCED's competencies. (Only Italian text available.)

One very positive aspect of the motu proprio, in its specific reasons given for the text, is the papal acknowledgement that, "the Institutes and Religious Communities that celebrate regularly in the Extraordinary Form have reached today a proper stability of numbers and life..."

For over thirty years, the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, established by the motu proprio Ecclesia Dei adflicta, of July 2, 1988, has acquitted with sincere and praiseworthy solicitude the task of collaborating with the Bishops and the Dicasteries of the Roman Curia, in facilitating the full ecclesial communion of priests, seminarians, communities or individual religious men and women once attached to the Fraternity founded by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, who wished to remain united to the Successor of Peter in the Catholic Church, while preserving their spiritual and liturgical traditions.

In this way, the Commission was able to exercise its authority and competence over said Societies and Associations in the name of the Holy See, until otherwise provided.

Subsequently, under the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum of 7 July 2007, the Pontifical Commission extended the authority of the Holy See over those Institutes and religious communities, which adhere to the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite and earlier traditions of religious life, maintaining vigilance over the observance and application of established dispositions.

Two years later, my Venerable Predecessor Benedict XVI, with the motu proprio Ecclesiae Unitatem, of 2 July 2009, reorganized the structure of the Pontifical Commission, in order to make it more suitable for the new situation created with the remission of the excommunication of the four Bishops consecrated without pontifical mandate. Moreover, considering that, after such an act of grace, the matters handled by the same Pontifical Commission were primarily doctrinal, my predecessor linked the Commission to the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith more organically, conserving its initial ends, but modifying its structure.

Now, since the Feria IV [the regular Wednesday meeting] of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith of November 15, 2017 had formulated the request that the dialogue between the Holy See and the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X [SSPX] be conducted directly by the aforementioned Congregation, and since the issues treated are of a doctrinal nature, to which request I gave my approval in Audientia to the Cardinal Prefect [Cardinal Luis Ladaria,SJ] the following 24 November, and [since] this proposal was welcomed by the Plenary Session of the same Congregation celebrated from 23 to 26 January 2018, I have come, after ample reflection, to the following Decision.

Considering today the conditions that had led the holy Pontiff, John Paul II, to the establishment of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei; noting that the Institutes and religious communities that usually celebrate in extraordinary form have today found their own stability of number and life; noting that the aims and issues dealt with by the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei are of a predominantly doctrinal nature; wishing that these aims be ever more visible to the conscience of the ecclesial communities, with the present Apostolic Letter motu proprio data;

I establish (Delibero):

Op-Ed - Anglican Nightmare in Rome: "Ordained" Female Deacons, First Step Towards "Women Priests"

Father Richard G. Cipolla, DPhil (Oxon)

“Consecrated women already work so much with the poor and the marginalized: teaching the catechism, accompanying the sick and the moribund, distributing communion, [and] in many countries conducting the common prayers in absence of priests and in those circumstances pronouncing the homily. In the church there is the office of the permanent diaconate, but it is open only to married and non-married men. What impedes the church from including women among permanent deacons, just as it happened in the early church? Why not construct an official commission that might study the question?"

The above quote was one of the questions asked of Pope Francis at the meeting of the International Union of Superior General of Women’s Orders in the Church in May 2016. The Pope’s response included a statement of his personal interest in the question and he promised to set up a Commission to investigate the question. Four members of the Commission were part of a panel discussion on “The Future of Women Deacons: Views from the Papal Commission and the American Pews” at Fordham University’s Center for Religion and Culture”. Panelists included 4 members of the Commission: Phyllis Zagano, a long time advocate for ordaining women to the diaconate, Jesuit Father Bernard Pottier, and Sister Donna Ciangio, O.P., the chancellor of the Archdiocese of Newark and principal and founder of Church Leadership Consultation. The moderator of the discussion was Father Thomas Rosica, CEO of Salt and Light. Fr Rosica is the priest who in a fit of enthusiasm for the pontificate of Pope Francis declared: “Pope Francis breaks Catholic traditions whenever he wants because he is “free from disordered attachments” Our Church has indeed entered a new phase: with the advent of this first Jesuit pope, it is openly ruled by an individual rather than by the authority of Scripture alone or even its own dictates of tradition plus Scripture.”. That quote sets the mise en scene of this panel discussion.

Ten-hut! First Solemn High Mass at West Point for cadets in six decades

We received a short report from a reader on one of the more unusual places to see a Solemn High Mass take place: 

There was a Solemn High Mass at West Point Academy on Friday, January 11, 2019. Captain Randy Shed asked Fr. Donald Kloster if he could organize the first Solemn High Mass at Holy Trinity Chapel in at least 57 years. Captain Shed then asked his pastor about the possibility of a Solemn High Mass at West Point. Rev. Fr. Major Sean Magnuson was very gracious to us and gave us the needed permission. 

About 120 faithful attended in the pews. About half were from West Point Academy and the other half were civilians from New York and Connecticut.

Lepanto conference and solemn pontifical Mass in NYC

Next month there will be a conference and solemn pontifical Mass at one of New York City's most beautiful churches.

The Most Reverend James Massa, auxiliary bishop of Brooklyn (and pastor of a parish in Park Slope, and vicar for education), will offer the Mass.  The assistant priest will be the Reverend Father Richard Cipolla.

Two of the three speakers at the conference are Rorate contributors:  Father Cipolla and Dr. Peter Kwasniewski.

The day is being organized by the Society of Saint Hugh of Cluny, which has details here.

Archbishop Viganò Writes Public Letter to McCarrick: REPENT!

Dear Archbishop McCarrick,

As has been reported as a news by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the accusations against you for crimes against minors and abuses against seminarians are going to be examined and judged very soon with an administrative procedure.

Influential Editorial declares Francis Pontificate a "failure": Hope for an end to Hyper-Papalism

The very recent publication of the editorial by R.R. Reno, the editor of First Things, declaring the pontificate of Pope Francis a “failure” ("A Failing Papacy", Feb. 2019 issue), is both newsworthy and more importantly the beginning, we hope, of an intellectual examination of the present papacy that will result in an honest assessment of the present papacy and, one further hopes, a call for an end to the hyper-papalism of the past years—perhaps even over a century--, and a theological reassessment, based on the Tradition of the Church, of the nature and role of the papacy.

That the editor of First Things, which became for some years, in my personal assessment, an organ for the Neo-Conservative agenda, has written this editorial may not catch the attention of the New York Times, but certainly is significant among those Catholics who understand the Tradition of the Church and who have been and are greatly disturbed by the failure of this pontificate to articulate clearly and unambiguously the Catholic Faith in a time of political and cultural mass confusion.

Not Just More Scripture, But Different Scripture — Comparing the Old and New Lectionaries

The following study was completed in March 2016 and subsequently published as the Foreword to Matthew Hazell's remarkable reference work "Index Lectionum: A Comparative Table of Readings for the Ordinary and Extraordinary Forms of the Roman Rite." The passage of time under the reign of Pope Francis has meanwhile witnessed the welcome development of a large number of Catholics of good will beginning to wake up to the magnitude of the rupture effected by the liturgical reform. Because not everyone has this volume or expects to have it, I've been encouraged to share the Foreword with a wider audience. Nevertheless, I encourage serious students of liturgy to purchase the Index Lectionum itself, because it is a formidable research tool.

Not Just More Scripture, But Different Scripture

by Peter A. Kwasniewski

As Matthew Hazell notes in his “Introduction and User’s Guide” below, this Index Lectionum may be used by any student of the Roman Rite, whether in its classical form or its modern form, who wishes to see exactly how the books, chapters, and verses of Sacred Scripture end up being utilized (or not utilized) in the readings given at Mass. For that function alone, this volume is a tool of obvious and immense value. But this Index also facilitates, in fact for the first time, fruitful scholarly comparisons between the old and new lectionaries. In this foreword, I will outline the kind of results that such comparisons yield, in the hopes that others, too, will be inspired to take up this important research.

Socci: The Church is collapsing, but the Vatican has launched a crusade against Salvini

Antonio Socci
January 6, 2019
What is going on in the Catholic Church? The situation is not only catastrophic - it’s absurd.  We hear of churches emptying dramatically in the West and Christians being cruelly persecuted in the East. We hear of the disappearance of traditional Catholic movements, of internal clashes in the Curia, of continuous scandals, of immense confusion among the faithful as a result of Pope Francis’ revolutionary feats ( recently he even “forgot” about the dogma of the Immaculate Conception).
Yet the churchmen are not addressing any of this. They are not worried at all. The shepherds are not interested in the sheep going astray and being scattered.
The hierarchical class is completely taken up by politics. It’s a real fever. That in itself is already surreal, but  not sufficiently. The fact is, they don’t want to bring the “social doctrine” of the Church into politics nor the “non-negotiable principals”,  as one might like to believe they would.  Following the “Bergoglian teaching” they have only one theological-political theme to insist upon and in fundamentalist tones:  migrants.

Francis - Towards a Masonic Fraternal Future?

"Liberty, Equality, Fraternity":
Placed by the French Republic in front of the Saint Pancras church, in Aups (Provence)

In his Christmas message, Francis used the word "fraternity" not less than 12 times. It is, as is well known, one of the ideals of the French Revolution, and chosen by the Revolutionaries precisely due to the influence of the secret societies that bred that disastrous event.

[M]y wish for a happy Christmas is a wish for fraternity.

Fraternity among individuals of every nation and culture.

Fraternity among people with different ideas, yet capable of respecting and listening to one another.

Fraternity among persons of different religions. Jesus came to reveal the face of God to all those who seek him.

But do not believe for a moment we are being conspiratorial -- in fact, to be honest, we had not even paid attention to the Urbi et Orbi message before the great Spanish association of Freemasons, the Grand Lodge of Spain, posted this on Monday:

Roman Forum 2019

The annual Roman Forum on the shores of Lake Garda in Northern Italy is one of the most important institutions in Catholic traditionalism, bringing together some of the best traditionalist minds to reflect on where we are, how we got here, and how to move forward. The chairman, Dr. John Rao, has sent us the following information about this year's symposium as well as the lectures on Church history that he will be giving in New York City. We urge our readers to consider attending the symposium and the lectures.

We also urge our readers to support the Gardone Summer Symposium through donations. The Roman Forum has now collected $25,000 of the $75,000 needed to provide for the attendance of the nineteen speakers and the musical director, as well as for the cost of the hall rental, a donation for the use of the parish church, and assistance for twenty scholarship candidates. $50,000 more is needed.  Please do consider giving a tax-deductible donation to support the attendance at the symposium of a speaker, a member of the clergy, a seminarian, or a student. Send all applications, deposit,  payments, and donations for the Summer Symposium either through the PayPal link on the Roman Forum Website or directly to: Dr. John C. Rao, The Roman Forum, 11 Carmine Street, # 2C, New York, NY 10014. 

De Mattei: Dare, Monsignore!

An Appeal from the Lepanto Foundation


Twenty-five years ago, on 8 February 1994, the European Parliament voted on a resolution that invited the nations of Europe to promote and give legal protection to homosexuality. In his Angelus address on 20 February 1994, the Holy Father Pope John Paul II appealed to public opinion worldwide, affirming that “the legal approbation of active homosexuality is not morally admissible [...]. The Resolution of the European Parliament has called for the legitimization of a moral disorder.The Parliament has unduly given institutional value to deviant behaviors, which do not conform to God’s plan”.

In May of that same year, the Lepanto Cultural Center [Centro Culturale Lepanto] handed out a manifesto in Strasbourg to parliamentary representatives, called “Europe at Strasbourg: Represented or Betrayed?”. The manifesto made an indignant protest against the promotion of a vice condemned by both Christian and Western conscience, and asked the European bishops “to unite their voices to that of the Supreme Pastor [John Paul II] in order to multiply it in their dioceses, by publicly denouncing the moral fault with which the European Assembly has stained itself and warning the flock entrusted to their care of the growing attacks of anti-Christian forces in the world”.

Today, one after another, the principal European nations, including many of those with the most ancient Catholic tradition, have elevated sodomy to a legal right by recognizing, under different forms, so-called “same-sex marriage” and introducing the concept of the crime of “homophobia.” The Pastors of the Church, who should have formed an unbreakable dam of opposition against the homosexualization of society promoted by the political class and by the media-financial oligarchies, have in fact fostered it by their silence. Even at the highest levels of the Church, the practice of homosexuality and of a so-called “gay-friendly” culture that justifies and encourages homosexual vice has spread like a cancer.

Sermon for the Epiphany: A King of Orient tells us what the journey to Bethlehem was like

by Fr. Richard Cipolla

From the Gospel: “And they fell down and worshipped Him.”

It was one of the worst trips I had ever taken.  The snow, the cold, and then rain as soon as we got out of the mountains.  They robbed us at one of the inns; in some towns the food was not even edible. But we went on, somehow we did not give this all up, for it was still there, that star that we had seen that night many week ago now.  We searched our charts, we consulted others, and that star—there was nothing like it we had ever seen.  And so we set out, we set out in some sort of faith, looking for something, for surely that star was meant to announce something great.  We were not even sure what we were looking for.  Some said a king was to be born in the land of the Jews.  That is what one of my companions had heard, and it was this king that we set out to find.  Or was it? 

Event: Dominican Rite Mass in Lafayette, Indiana, January 5th

Una Voce Lafayette invites you to the last Mass celebrated in the historic Saint Elizabeth chapel before the commencement of renovation of the Franciscan Central Health hospital complex. Celebrated by Fr. Timothy Combs, OP, the music featured will be Dominican chant and a Mass setting by Hildegard of Bingen, along with baroque organ music by Miss Jessica Earle, organist of St. Joseph's, Chelsea (Australia). For those wanting to do so, please bring water for blessing by Father.

One day an atheist walked into a church

" I had been but a few moments in the church when I was suddenly seized with an unutterable agitation of mind. I raised my eyes, the building had disappeared from before me ; one single chapel had, so to speak, gathered and concentrated all the light ; and in the midst of this radiance I saw standing on the altar lofty, clothed with splendours, full of majesty and of sweetness, the Virgin Mary, just as she is represented on my medal. An irresistible force drew me towards her; the Virgin made me a sign with her hand that I should kneel down ; and then she seemed to say, That will do! She spoke not a word, but I understood all." 
Marie-Alphonse Ratisbonne

Event: Dr. Kwasniewski's Upcoming Lectures in Minneapolis, January 9 & 10

Next week, on Wednesday and Thursday, I will be in Minneapolis giving talks, as follows.

Reminder: Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society

This is our monthly reminder to please enroll Souls of the Rorate Caeli Purgatorial Society. We now stand at 89 priests saying weekly or monthly traditional Latin Masses for the Souls. Come on Fathers, let's get this to 100! Make a resolution for 2019 to help the Souls through the Society. 

** 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.