Saturday, August 30, 2014
Vision of Pope John Paul II: Says to Instead Pray to Pope Pius XII

This story was published by Catholic News.  Let us pray for the Canonization of Pope Pius XII:


Rome, Italy, Jan 19, 2010 / 12:21 pm (CNA).- Some details of the case under investigation regarding a possible miracle attributed to Venerable Pope Pius XII have been made public. The story features not just one former Pontiff, but two.

On Tuesday morning, Vatican journalist Andrea Tornielli published an article in Il Giornale describing at length the situation which “mysteriously involves” John Paul II.
Tornielli reported that this case was brought to the attention of Benedict XVI shortly before he approved a measure on Dec. 19, 2009 venerating Pope Pius XII’s life of “heroic virtue,” whose cause had been on-hold for the previous two years.

In 2005, a teacher of 31 years of age was expecting her third child in the city of Castellammare di Stabia. She began to have strong pains, which after many tests and a biopsy, signaled the presence of Burkitt’s lymphoma. The condition is typified by swollen lymph nodes, often starting in the abdominal region, and the cancer can spread to bone marrow and spinal fluid. Not only was her health in danger, but that of her unborn child was also threatened.

The woman’s husband first prayed for the intercession Pope John Paul II, who was then only recently buried in the crypt of St. Peter’s. It wasn’t long before the Holy Father appeared to the woman’s husband in a dream. The spouse described to Tornielli what he saw that night, “He had a serious face. He said to me, ‘I can’t do anything, you must pray to this other priest…’ He showed me the image of a thin, tall, lean priest. I didn’t recognize him; I didn’t know who he might be.”

Several days passed before he, “by chance,” came across a picture of Pope Pius XII in a magazine and recognized him as the man John Paul II had shown him in the dream.

The man wasted no time in bombarding Pius XII with prayers for his wife’s healing and following her very first treatments she was declared free of the cancer, the tumor had disappeared. In fact, she was cured so quickly that her doctors pondered the notion that they may have originally misdiagnosed the pathology.

The tests and charts were reconsulted and the initial diagnosis was confirmed. In the absence of the tumor, she had her baby and returned to work. After some time had gone by, she decided to contact the Vatican regarding her experience.

A local news source, the Sorrento & Dintorni, ran an article on Sunday offering a basic story of the possible miracle and the diocesan response to it. According to their report, a Tribunal has been organized by Archbishop Felice Cece of Sorrento-Castellammare to determine the nature of the occurrence and whether it will move on to the Vatican.

According to Tornielli, if they decide positively, the case will be sent on to Congregation for the Causes of Saints for investigation by a team of doctors to declare whether the event was explicable by natural means. If there is no explanation found for the healing, theologians from the Congregation will debate the issue. Only with their “go-ahead” can a dossier subsequently reach the hands of Pope Benedict XVI for official recognition.

Cardinal Jose Saraiva Martins, Prefect Emeritus of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, told CNA on Monday that there is no telling how much time the entire process might take.
He also mentioned that if a case arrives to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints it is examined in chronological order based on the date of arrival and there are thousands of cases pending review.

However, he added, “exceptions might be made for Popes, etc.”

There was no mention in Tornielli’s report of where the lymphoma had manifested itself in the woman’s body. According to the National Institute of Health, Burkitt’s lymphoma is treatable and more than half of those diagnosed with the cancer are cured with intensive chemotherapy.
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Friday, August 29, 2014
SSPX Offers Mass in St. Peter's Basilica


Taken from the SSPX Website:

Watch a video of a Society priest offering Mass at St. Pius X's altar in St. Peter's Basilica. 
In conjunction with the ongoing 100th anniversary of our patron, St. Pius X, it gives us immense joy to convey some recent news of an important event that occurred at his very tomb in St. Peter's Basilica. 
On August 9th, a pilgrimage group from the SSPX's chapel in Noisy-le-Grand, France, had the privilege of attending Mass offered by their chaplain, Fr. Michel Sivry, at the altar of St. Pius X. Not only has it been reported that this occurred with the prior knowledge and consent of the basilica's "highest authority", but a video team even filmed the event for the French District's website, LaPorteLatine.org, where it may be watched. 
This video of Low Mass is unique in that it was shot at up-close angles so the celebrant's actions could be clearly seen, whereas usually the faithful are unable to view these sacerdotal gestures. Thus one of the striking features of this recording is the great reverence accorded to the Sacred Species throughout the ceremonies. 
We hope that this video will help Latin Rite Catholics everywhere to better appreciate the beauty, reverence and sacredness integral to the traditional Roman Mass, aspects that are visible signs of the true and unmitigated doctrines of the Faith, thus fulfilling the liturgical axiom: lex orandi, lex credendi (the law of prayer is the law of belief). 
Perhaps too, this example from certain authorities in Rome (as also occurred during the SSPX's Jubilee Pilgrimage in 2000) will influence those who have authority over certain pilgrimage shrines here in the States to modify their injunctions against our devout pilgrims and their chaplains.
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Seminary Fund for Michael Cunningham

The following is from a GoFundMe Campaign to Help a Seminarian at the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter. Please consider assisting him.
Michael Cunningham is a fourth year seminarian at the FSSP seminary in Denton, Nebraska. I am seeking assistance to help pay Mike's past due tuition of $6,000.00 and the $7,000.00 currently due. FSSP seminarians are required to pay a large part of their tuition.  
I first met Mike in the summer of 2013 when he came to assist at our FSSP parish in Littleton, Colorado. After a few conversations with Mike, it became obvious to me and many fellow parishoners that Mike was a sincere servant of God , dedicated to saving souls. I've since met Mike's siblings, and I've learned that their father, a US Navy corpsman, passed away from the effects of Agent Orange in 2007. Mike's mother Donna, who is on a fixed income is his primary benefactor. Would you please consider contributing to Mike's tuition?  
Here is a link to the GoFundMe Page: http://www.gofundme.com/derasc 
If you would rather give directly to Michael Cunningham's tuition at the FSSP seminary:
Make checks payable to OLG Seminary and put a note on it that it is to go towards Mike Cunningham's tuition 
Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary
7880 W Denton Rd
Denton, Nebraska 68339-0147
ATTN:Tuition 
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Monday, August 25, 2014
Is There a Mediator with the "One Mediator Between God and Man"?

This spiritual gem is taken from "True Devotion" by St. Louis De Montfort:

83. It is more perfect, because it is more humble, not to approach God of ourselves without taking a mediator. Our nature, as I have just shown, is so corrupted that if we rely on our own works, efforts and preparations in order to reach God and please Him, it is certain that our good works will be defiled or be of little weight before God in inducing Him to unite Himself to us and to hear us. It is not without reason that God has given us mediators with His Majesty. He has seen our unworthiness and our incapacity; He has had pity on us; and in order to give us access to His mercies, He has provided us with powerful intercessors with His Grandeur, so that to neglect these mediators, and to draw near to His Holiness directly, and without any recommendation, is to fail in humility. It is to fail in respect toward God, so high and so holy. It is to make less account of that King of Kings than we should make of a king or prince of this earth, whom we would not willingly approach without some friend to speak for us.

84. Our Lord is our advocate and Mediator of redemption with God the Father. It is through Him that we ought to pray, in union with the whole Church, Triumphant and Militant. It is through Him that we have access to the Majesty of the Father, before whom we ought never to appear except sustained and clothed with the merits of His Son, just as the young Jacob came before his father Isaac in the skins of the kids to receive his blessing.

85. But have we not need of a mediator with the Mediator Himself? Is our purity great enough to unite us directly to Him, and by ourselves? Is He not God, in all things equal to His Father, and consequently the Holy of Holies, as worthy of respect as His Father? If through His infinite charity He has made Himself our bail and our Mediator with God His Father, in order to appease Him and to pay Him what we owed Him, are we, on that account, to have less respect and less fear for His Majesty and His Sanctity?

Let us say boldly with St. Bernard (2) that we have need of a mediator with the Mediator Himself, and that it is the divine Mary who is the most capable of filling that charitable office. It was through her that Jesus Christ came to us, and it is through her that we must go to Him. If we fear to go directly to Jesus Christ, our God, whether because of His infinite greatness or because of our vileness or because of our sins, let us boldly implore the aid and intercession of Mary, our Mother. She is good, she is tender, she has nothing in her austere and forbidding, nothing too sublime and too brilliant. In seeing her, we see our pure nature. She is not the sun, which by the brightness of its rays blinds us because of our weakness; but she is fair and gentle as the moon (Cant. 6:9), which receives the light of the sun, and tempers it to make it more suitable to our capacity. She is so charitable that she repels none of those who ask her intercession, no matter how great sinners they have been; for, as the saints say, never has it been heard since the world was the world that anyone has confidently and perseveringly had recourse to our Blessed Lady and yet has been repelled. (3)

She is so powerful that none of her petitions has ever been refused. She has but to show herself before her Son to pray to Him, and straightaway He grants her desires, straightaway He receives her prayers. He is always lovingly vanquished by the prayers of His dearest Mother, who bore Him and nourished Him. (4)

86. All this is taken from St. Bernard and St. Bonaventure, so that according to them, we have three steps to mount to go to God: the first, which is nearest to us and the most suited to our capacity, is Mary; the second is Jesus Christ; and the third is God the Father. To go to Jesus, we must go to Mary; she is our mediatrix of intercession. To go to God the Father, we must go to Jesus; for He is our Mediator of redemption. Now the devotion that I am about to bring forward observes this order perfectly.
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Sunday, August 24, 2014
Traditional Mass Propers: 11th Sunday after Pentecost

Vestments: Green


INTROIT
Ps. 67:6-7, 36

God is in His holy place. It is God who makes men dwell in unity in his house; it is He who gives power and strength to His people. Ps. 67:2. Let God arise, and let His enemies be scattered, and let those who hate Him flee before Him. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT - Almighty and eternal God, Your bounteous kindness exceeds the merits and fondest hopes of our prayers. Shower Your mercy upon us, forgive us the sins that strike fear in our consciences, and grant us the blessings we dare not presume to ask for. Through our Lord . . .

EPISTLE
I Cor. 15:1-10

Brethren: Now I make known unto you brethren, the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye received, wherein also ye stand, by which also ye are saved, if ye hold fast the word which I preached unto you, except ye believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which also I received: that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried; and that he hath been raised on the third day according to the scriptures; and that he appeared to Cephas; then to the twelve; then he appeared to above five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain until now, but some are fallen asleep; then he appeared to James; then to all the apostles; and last of all, as to the child untimely born, he appeared to me also. For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not found vain.

GRADUAL
Ps. 27:7, 1

My heart has trusted in God, and I have found help. I have thrived once again, and with all my will I shall give praise to Him. V. To You, O Lord my God, I cry; be not deaf to me, nor depart from me.

Alleluia, alleluia! V. Ps. 80:2-3 Sing joyfully to God our helper, sing aloud to the God of Jacob. Play a pleasant psalm upon the harp. Alleluia!


GOSPEL
Mark 7:31-37

At that time, Jesus went out from the borders of Tyre, and came through Sidon unto the sea of Galilee, through the midst of the borders of Decapolis. And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to lay his hand upon him. And he took him aside from the multitude privately, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spat, and touched his tongue; and looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, "Ephphatha," that is, "Be opened." And his ears were opened, and the bond of his tongue was loosed, and he spake plain. And he charged them that they should tell no man: but the more he charged them, so much the more a great deal they published it. And they were beyond measure astonished, saying, "He hath done all things well; he maketh even the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak."

OFFERTORY
Ps. 29:2-3

I will extol You, O Lord, for You have upheld me, and have not let my enemies rejoice over me. O Lord, I cried out to You, and You have healed me.

SECRET - O Lord, look mercifully upon this service of ours that our gift may be acceptable to You and worthy of winning Your assistance for our weakness. Through our Lord . . .

PREFACE (Preface of the Most Holy Trinity) - It it truly meet and just, right and for our salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God; Who, together with Thine only-begotten Son, and the Holy Ghost, art one God, one Lord: not in the oneness of a single Person, but in the Trinity of one substance. For what we believe by Thy revelation of Thy glory, the same do we believe of Thy Son, the same of the Holy Ghost, without difference or separation. So that in confessing the true and everlasting Godhead, distinction in persons, unity in essence, and equality in majesty may be adored. Which the Angels and Archangels, the Cherubim also and Seraphim do praise: who cease not daily to cry out, with one voice saying:

COMMUNION
Prov. 3:9-10

Honor the Lord with your substance and with the first of all your fruits; and your barns shall be filled with abundance, and your presses shall run over with wine.

POST COMMUNION - O Lord, may we experience strength of mind and body from the Sacrament we have received. Let it restore health to both that we may glory in Your heavenly healing. Through our Lord . . .
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Friday, August 22, 2014
Round 4: Old and Collectible Books

In an update to my most recent posts on the topic, I also have these titles for sale.  Prices include shipping.  Please email me at acatholiclife[at]gmail[dot]com for more information or to order.
 
 "Discourses on The Apostles' Creed," by Rev. Clement Crock, 279 pp., 1938, Herder publ., hb, $25 good cond.
 
"The Commandments Explained," by Rev. Jos. Baierl, STD, 523 pp., 1945, Catechetical Guild, hb, $25, good cond.
 
"Religion---the Faith---the Church," by Canon P. Einig, DD ("A Series of Apologetic Discourses"), 1919,Wagner publ, hb, good cond., $25
 
"A Catechism for Adults," Rev. Wm. Cogan, 124 pp., 1951, paperback, good condition, $20
 
"Popular Sermons on the Catechism," Vol.I, Bamberg and Thurston, 451 pp., hb, 1914, Benziger publ., good cond., $25
 
"The Apostles' Creed," Rich. Felix, OSB, 184 pp., 1935, pb., good condition, $20, publ. Conception, MO
 
"Explanation of the Baltimore Catechism,"Rev. Thomas Kinkead, 365 pp., Benziger publ., 1891, fair condition, cover staining, wrinkled pages, $25
 
"What Is the Mass?", H. Chery, OP, 103 pp., 1951, Blackfriars publ., paperback, good cond., $20
 
"My Mass," J. Putz, SJ, 149 pp., 1958, Newman Press, hardback in good condition, $25
 
"The Catechetical Instructions of St. Thomas Aquinas," 227 pp., 1990s reprint of 1939 work, paperback, good condition, $20
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Octave Day of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today according to the 1962 Calendar is the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Below are the Mass Propers for this Feast along with commemorations of the Octave Day of the Assumption which was in place up until the 1955 Calendar of Saints.

History of Octaves

While the Novus Ordo calendar unfortunately only has 2 octaves, traditional Catholics will be familiar with the idea of multiple overlaping Octaves.  The practice of celebrating an Octave, while not only traced to the time spent by the Apostles and the Blessed Virgin Mary awaiting the Paraclete, also has its origins in the Old Testament eight-day celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles (Leviticus 23:36) and the Dedication of the Temple (2 Chronicles 7:9). Very truly, Christ did not come to abolish the Old Law but to fulfill it.

By the 8th century, Rome had developed liturgical octaves not only for Easter, Pentecost, and Christmas, but also for the Epiphany and the feast of the dedication of a church.

After 1568, when Pope Pius V reduced the number of octaves (since by then they had grown considerably), the number of Octaves was still plentiful.  Octaves were classified into several types. Easter and Pentecost had "specially privileged" octaves, during which no other feast whatsoever could be celebrated. Christmas, Epiphany, and Corpus Christi had "privileged" octaves, during which certain highly ranked feasts might be celebrated. The octaves of other feasts allowed even more feasts to be celebrated.

To reduce the repetition of the same liturgy for several days, Pope Leo XIII and Pope St. Pius X made further distinctions, classifying octaves into three primary types: privileged octaves, common octaves, and simple octaves. Privileged octaves were arranged in a hierarchy of first, second, and third orders. For the first half of the 20th century, octaves were ranked in the following manner, which affected holding other celebrations within their timeframes:

  • Privileged Octaves
    • Privileged Octaves of the First Order
      • Octave of Easter
      • Octave of Pentecost
    • Privileged Octaves of the Second Order
      • Octave of Epiphany
      • Octave of Corpus Christi
    • Privileged Octaves of the Third Order
      • Octave of Christmas
      • Octave of the Ascension
      • Octave of the Sacred Heart
  • Common Octaves
    • Octave of the Immaculate Conception of the BVM
    • Octave of the Solemnity of St. Joseph
    • Octave of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist
    • Octave of Saints Peter and Paul
    • Octave of All Saints
    • Octave of the Assumption of the BVM
  • Simple Octaves
    • Octave of St. Stephen
    • Octave of St. John the Apostle
    • Octave of the Holy Innocents 
Octave of the Assumption Propers



INTROIT
Hebrews 4: 16
Let us go with confidence to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace in seasonable aid. (Ps. 44: 2) My heart hath uttered a good word: I speak my works to the King. v. Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

COLLECT - Let us pray. Almighty, everlasting God, who didst prepare in the Heart of the Virgin Mary a worthy dwelling-place for the Holy Ghost; mercifully grant that we, devoutly contemplating the festivity of the same Immaculate Heart, may be enabled to live according to Thy heart. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, Forever and ever. R.Amen.

COMMEMORATION OF THE OCTAVE DAY OF THE ASSUMPTION - Let us pray. Forgive, we beseech Thhe, O Lord, the sins of Thy servants, that we, who by our own deeds are unable to please Thee, may be saved by the intercession of the Mother of Thy Son, our Lord, Who with Thee liveth and reigneth in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen.

EPISTLE
Eccles. 24: 23-31
As the vine I have brought forth a pleasant odor, and my flowers are the fruit of honor and riches. I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of knowledge, and of holy hope. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth in me is all hope of life and of virtue. Come over to me, all ye that desire me, and be filled with my fruits; for my spirit is sweet above honey, and my inheritance above honey and the honey-comb. My memory is unto everlasting generations. They that eat me, shall yet hunger; and they that drink me, shall yet thirst. He that hearkeneth to me, shall not be confounded, and they that work by me, shall not sin. They that explain me shall have life everlasting. Thanks be to God.

GRADUAL
My heart shall rejoice in thy salvation: I will sing to the Lord, who giveth me good things: yea I will sing to the name of the Lord the most high. V. (Ps. 44: 18) They shall remember thy name throughout all generations. Therefore shall people praise thee for ever: yea, for ever and ever.

Alleluia, alleluia. V. (Luke 1: 46, 47) My soul doth magnify the Lord. And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. Alleluia.


GOSPEL
John 19: 26-27
At that time, there stood by the cross of Jesus, His mother, and His mother's sister Mary of Cleophas, and Mary Magdalen. When Jesus therefore had seen His mother and the disciple standing, whom He loved, He saith to His mother,"Woman, behold thy son." After that He saith to the disciple, "Behold, thy mother." And from that hour the disciple took her to his own.

OFFERTORY
Luke 1: 46
Let us pray. My spirit hath rejoiced in God my Savior; because He that is mighty hath done great things to me: and holy is His name.

SECRET Offering the Immaculate Lamb to Thy Majesty, O Lord, we beg that the divine fire which ineffably inflamed the Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary may be lighted in our hearts. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen.

SECRET FOR THE OCTAVE DAY May the prayer of the Mother of God aid Thy people, O Lord: and although we know her to have passed out of this life, fulfilling the lot of the flesh, may we experience her intercession for us with Thee in Heavenly glory. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen. 

COMMUNION
John 19: 27
Jesus said to His mother: Woman, behold thy son: Then He said to the disciple: Behold thy mother. And from that hour, the disciple took her to his own. 



POST COMMUNION - Let us pray. Refreshed by divine gifts, we humbly beseech Thee, O Lord, that, by the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the solemnity of whose Immaculate Heart we have just venerated, we may be freed from present dangers and may attain to the joys of eternal life Through the same Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God For ever and ever. R. Amen. .

POST COMMUNION FOR THE OCTAVE DAY - Let us pray. Now that we have received, O Lord, the Sacrament of salvation, grant, we beseech Thee, that through the merits and the intercession of the blessed Virgin Mary, who was taken up into heaven, we may be brought to the glory of the resurrection. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God Forever and ever. R.Amen.

Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945
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Thursday, August 21, 2014
Catholics & Cremation: Why It Is Not Allowable



IS CREMATION ALLOWED?

History

The burial (inhumation) of the bodies has always been the most general and constant practice of the people. Egyptians and Persians buried their dead. The Egyptians even embalmed the cadavers of famous persons. Tacitus (History V, 5) says that the Greeks and the Latins buried the dead. In the Old Testament, Tobias is praised by St. Raphael the Archangel because he buried the dead at the risk of his life: “When thou didst bury the dead by night, I offered thy prayer to the Lord” (Tob. 12, 12).


In the gospel of St. Mark, we see Joseph of Arimathea “buying fine linen”, and after that “taking down the Body of Jesus, he wrapped Him in the linen and laid Him in a sepulchre (…) and when the Sabbath was passed, Mary Magdalene and Mary, the mother of James, and Salome brought sweet spices, that coming, they might anoint Jesus” (Mk 15, 46; 16,1). At the time of the first Christians, cremation was spread among the Romans. It was a consequence of the decadence of the society for instance, at the time of Sylla and Marius the proportion between burial and cremation was one to fifty.

But the first Christians vigorously reacted against this practice. They buried their dead at the risk of their life. It was indeed very dangerous for them, because burial made them be recognized as Christians, and the persecuting Romans, when they discovered the cemeteries of the Christians, confiscated them and exhumed the bodies, as under the order of the emperors Valerian or Diocletian.

Such resistance has only one possible explanation: it came from a commandment given by the Apostles themselves.

Pope Saint Innocent I (401-417) said that the violation of this order is one of the most serious scandals, and it will never be changed. No dispensation can be given, adds the pope, except in the case of necessity (epidemic, war, etc.). When the barbarians converted to the Catholic faith, the Church obliged them to bury their dead and to stop burning them, even under death penalty as it was at the time of Charlemagne (eight century).

As Christianity spread, proportionally the practice of burial prevailed over cremation.

When cremation is used against the Catholic Church.

It is the French Revolution of 1789 which talked again about cremation. And in the last quarter of the XIXth century, the Masonic societies obtained from the governments of Europe the official recognition of this practice. It was accepted in Italy in the year 1876, in France in the year 1887.

The motives given by the advocates of incineration were hygiene, lack of space in the great cities to put cemeteries, risk of burying somebody alive. These reasons are still put forward today. But are these motives really serious?

Concerning hygiene, this objection is an insult to all the civilized nations, which practiced inhumations. Monastic orders, which buried their dead in the cloisters never had, because of this, infections, epidemic or stain in the water they drew nearby!

Concerning the alleged lack of place in the great cities, everybody knows that many dead are buried one over the other, and above all, what is this “progress” of the world which would make us now incapable to give a decent burial to our dead?
Not to be troubled by the argument of the partisans of cremation, let us quote the testimony of a witness of an incineration:

“It was the most poignant impression of horror I ever had. I have shivers, and cold sweat on the forehead when I remember this body twisting, these arms thrashing the air as to ask mercy, these fingers tightening, these black leg giving great kicks, catching fire as torches”.

Which son would dare to burn like this the body of his mother, or of his father! Bishop Freppel (bishop of Angers in France, last century) called this action savagery, and said “How can we make disappear the cadaver of our beloved parents which such violence on the day of their funeral?”

How can we pray in front of a funeral urn containing the ashes of our parents? Cemeteries, where they quietly rest, waiting for the general resurrection, are on the opposite a continual invitation to pray for the repose of their souls.

But we understand better the profound motive of this campaign for cremation when we read, in an advertising leaflet for this practice. “To choose cremation is to enter in the universal humanistic chain of union attached to the defense of human values” (Cremation Association of the Basque Coast).  Here, it is no more question of hygiene, lack of space, etc. but we find the objective of Freemasonry, this occult society whose goal, under the pretext of human values, is to destroy Catholicism and all the orders put by God in the world.

Doctrine of the Catholic Church

The first intervention of the Holy Office against cremation date from the period when Freemasonry began to revive the pagan custom of cremation: January 12th 1870; May 19th and December 15th 1886; July 27th 1892; May 3rd 1897.

When Canon Law was promulgated in 1917, it summarized the previous condemnation of cremation in the following three canons:

Canon 1203: “The bodies of the faithful must be buried, and cremation is reprobated.  If anyone has in any manner ordered his body to be cremated, it shall be unlawful to execute his wish.”

Canon 1240, 5° says that “Persons who have given orders for the cremation of their bodies are deprived of ecclesiastical burial, unless they have before death given some signs of repentance.”

Canon 2339 says that “Persons who, in violation of the prohibition of Canon 1240, dare to order or force the ecclesiastical burial (of those who are to be deprived of it) incur excommunication ipso facto; and persons who of their own accord give ecclesiastical burial to the above mentioned, incur an interdict from entering a church.”

In an Instruction dated June 19th 1926, the Holy Office said that the Last Sacraments could not be given to a person who is asking for cremation for itself.  It adds that, entering in a society for cremation linked with Freemasonry makes this person incur the penalties for joining Freemasons, especially excommunication.  Public Masses for the repose of the soul of persons who asked for cremation, are also forbidden.  It comes from Canon 1241, which forbids public Masses for persons having been deprived of ecclesiastical burial.

Obviously let us not forget that the Holy Church permits cremation in exceptional circumstances, as in times of epidemic, war, etc. (same Instruction)

WHAT ARE THE REASONS FOR THE CONDEMNATION OF CREMATION BY THE CATHOLIC CHURCH?

The first reason comes from the particular circumstance which made cremation having been newly promoted by Freemasonry.  Because of this fact, cremation becomes a public profession of irreligion and materialism.  But it is important to understand that it is not the most important reason.  The Catholic Church does not condemn cremation only because Freemasonry promotes it.

The Holy Catholic Church condemns cremation because it is a barbarous custom opposed to the respect and piety that one must have for our dead, even on the natural level.  And in the eyes of faith, by burial, the body laid under the earth where it will wait for its resurrection.  St. John Chrysostom says that the cemeteries are as dormitories where the dead are waiting for the day of resurrection.  Only  exceptional reasons (as in epidemic or war, etc.) can obliged for the burning of the bodies

Conciliar modernism and the doctrine of the Catholic Church. In the new Canon Law promulgated in 1983 (n. 1176 paragraph 3), the actual authorities of the Church do not forbid anymore cremation “unless it was chosen because of reasons opposite to the Catholic doctrine” (for example, denial of the dogma of the resurrection of the bodies).

But isn’t it in fact a great help given to all these associations for cremation founded all over the world now to spread this practice?  These associations are inspired by Freemasonry which is now spreading cremation to fight the Catholic Church and its beliefs.

Even if the new Canon Law continues to deeply recommend the burial of the bodies, its new politics of no-condemnation favors once again the action of the enemies of the Church who, by their diabolical hatred of the creation of God, kill the fetus by abortion, the sick and the old people by euthanasia, and savagely destroy the bodies of the dead by cremation.

One can also add that cremation endangers the practice of the veneration of relics.

Practical Conclusion

In the churches and chapels of the Society of St. Pius X, as we teach the traditional doctrine of the Catholic Church, we also keep its traditional practices. Therefore, we continue to follow the teaching of the traditional Canon Law of 1917, which expresses the constant thought of the holy Catholic Church:

S The bodies of the dead must be buried - cremation is forbidden.

S   Ecclesiastical burial will be denied to those who asked for the cremation of their bodies.

Let us honor our dead by burying their bodies with respect in a cemetery, and taking care of their souls by Masses, prayers and sacrifices. N. B.  What is said about the bodies must be applied to the members of the body (if cut by surgery for example) or to the dead fetus: they must be buried and not incinerated.
                                         
- Quoted From an article of Fr. Pinaud, SSPX  published in “Le Sel de la Terre.”


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Anniversary of Pope St. Pius X Lying in State

Pope St. Pius X during his lying in state, 21–22 August 1914

In his will, Pope St. Pius X said, "I was born poor, I have lived poor, I wish to die poor." He was canonized on May 29, 1954, by Pope Pius XII - the first Pope canonized since St. Pius V in 1672.  For a thorough description of the Funeral Rite of the Pontiffs including photos of the Funeral of His Holiness Pope St. Pius X, please see my post: The Traditional Funeral Rites of the Supreme Pontiffs.

Prayer:

O God, Who to safeguard Catholic faith and to restore all things in Christ, didst fill the Supreme Pontiff, Saint Pius, with heavenly wisdom and apostolic fortitude: grant in Thy mercy: that by striving to fulfill his ordinances and to follow his example, we may reap eternal rewards. Through the same our Lord.
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Thursday, August 14, 2014
Vigil of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary


INTROIT
Ps. 44:13, 15-16 All the rich among the people shall seek your favor. Behind her the virgins shall be led to the king; her friends shall be brought to you with gladness and joy. Ps. 44:2. My heart overflows with good tidings; I sing my song to the king. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT - O God, You willed to choose the womb of Blessed Mary as Your dwelling place. Grant that we may joyfully celebrate her feast under the shield of her protection; who lives and rules with God the Father . . .

EPISTLE
Eccli. 24:23-31
As the vine I have brought forth a pleasant odour: and my flowers are the fruit of honour and riches.I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of knowledge, and of holy hope. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth, in me is all hope of life and of virtue. Come over to me, all ye that desire me, and be filled with my fruits. For my spirit is sweet above honey, and my inheritance above honey and the honeycomb. My memory is unto everlasting generations. They that eat me, shall yet hunger: and they that drink me, shall yet thirst. He that hearkeneth to me, shall not be confounded: and they that work by me, shall not sin. They that explain me shall have life everlasting.

GRADUAL
You are blessed and venerable, O Virgin Mary, for without the loss of your virginity you became the Mother of our Saviour. V. O Virgin Mother of God, He whom the whole world cannot contain enclosed Himself in your womb and was made man.



GOSPEL
Luke 11:27-28

At that time, as Jesus spoke these things, a certain woman from the crowd, lifting up her voice, said to him: "Blessed is the womb that bore thee and the paps that gave thee suck." But he said: "Yea rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God and keep it. "

OFFERTORY
Blessed are you, O Virgin Mary, who bore the Creator of all things. You brought forth your own Creator, and yet you remain a virgin forever.

SECRET O Lord, may the intercession of the Mother of God bring our offerings to Your merciful attention, for You took her out of this world that she might plead with confidence before Your throne for the forgiveness of our sins. Through the same Jesus Christ Your Son, our Lord, who lives and rules with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever.

COMMUNION
Blessed is the womb of the Virgin Mary, which bore the Son of the eternal God.


POST COMMUNION - Support us in our weakness, O merciful God. May we rise again from our sins through the intercession of the Holy Mother of God, whose feast we are preparing to celebrate. Through the same Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and rules with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever.

Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945
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Friday, August 8, 2014
Round 3: Old and Collectible Books

In an update to my post of last week, I also have these titles for sale.  Prices include shipping.  Please email me at acatholiclife[at]gmail[dot]com for more information or to order.

"The One Real Thing," by Benedict Williamson, 1925, Herder publ., very good condition, on the claims of the Church, hb, $25

"The Catholic Centre," by Edward Watkin, 1939, Sheed & Ward, good condition, hb, $25, the Truths of Catholicism

"The Words of Truth," McNeill and Aaron, 1942, St. Anthony Guild, pb, $20, religion text, good cond.
"Corpus Christi Quod Est Ecclesia," Sebastian Tromp, SJ, 1960, hb, $25, good condition, in English, the teachings of the Fathers

"Introduction to Christian Doctrine," James Alberione, SSP, 1961, St. Paul Editions, 88 pp., hb, good condition, $25

"The Catholic Religion," Msgr J. Burbach, TAN publ., 1933-1993 ed., pb, v.g. condition, for adults and converts, $20

"A Treasury of Catholic Thinking," Ralph Woods, ed., Crowell publ., pb., $20, excerpts from Augustine through Maritain, good cond.

"The Catholic's Ready Answer," Rev. M. Hill, pb, good condition, 1914-2011 ed..$20

"The Catholic Church and the Appeal to Reason," by Leo Ward, hb, good condition, MacMillan publ., $25

"The Catholic Religion, Illustrated, by Msgr. J. Burbach, pb., good condition, $20, 1929-1978 ed.

"Handbook for New Catholics," by Aloysius Burggraff, CSP, pb., $20, good condition, Deus books

"A Devout Exposition of the Holy Mass," John Heigham, 1876, Washbourne publ., fair condition with tape on cover, $25


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Feast of Ss. Cyriacus, Largus, and Smaragdu

Image Source: Fourteen Holy Helpers

During this time when many Christians are still martyred for their faith, it is an appropriate day on the Feast of Ss. Cyriacus, Largus, and Smaragdu to seek their intercession.
ST. CYRIACUS was a holy deacon at Rome, under the popes Marcellinus and Marcellus. In the persecution of Dioclesian, in 303, he was crowned with a glorious martyrdom in that city. With him suffered also Largus and Smaragdus, and twenty others, among whom are named Crescentianus, Sergius, Secondus, Alban, Victorianus, Faustinus, Felix, Sylvanus, and four women, Memmia, Juliana, Cyriacides, and Donata. Their bodies were first buried near the place of their execution on the Salarian way; but were soon after translated into a farm of the devout lady Lucina, on the Ostian road, on this eighth day of August, as is recorded in the ancient Liberian Calendar, and others.   
To honour the martyrs and duly celebrate their festivals, we must learn their spirit, and study to imitate them according to the circumstances of our state. We must, like them, resist evil unto blood, must subdue our passions, suffer afflictions with patience, and bear with others without murmuring or complaining. Many practise voluntary austerities cheerfully, only because they are of their own choice. But true patience requires, in the first place, that we bear all afflictions and contradictions from whatever quarter they come; and in this consists true virtue. Though we pray for heaven our prayers will not avail, unless we make use of the means which God sends to bring us thither. The cross is the ladder by which we must ascend. 
Source: Fr. Alban Butler (1711–73).  Volume VIII: August. The Lives of the Saints.  1866.
Collect:

O God, we are made happy by the annual feast of Your holy martyrs Cyriacus, Largus, and Smaragdus. May we imitate the fortitude under suffering of these saints whose birthday we celebrate today. Through our Lord . . .

Prayer Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal
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Thursday, August 7, 2014
The De-Sanctification of Sunday

Picture an average Sunday morning or Sunday afternoon.  The temperature is warm or at least pleasant.  Sunshine fills the sky.  The morning's calmness is punctuated only by the transcendent and alluring Church bells which toll throughout the morning during the Consecration at the Holy Mass.  Holiness pervades the air and the day is characterized by Christian charitable works, meetings of apostolates, authentic family time and other like activities - in one word, the day is set aside for leisure.

But this is how Sunday is in a Catholic nation.

Instead nowadays we find something far different - few if any Catholics go to Mass.  The bells no longer toll during the Consecration of the Mass.  In fact, few people even attend Mass and far, far fewer attend the reverent and beautiful Traditional Latin Mass.  Sacrilege takes place on a wide scale with Communion in the Hand.  Divine Justice is not offered an august and immaculate victim; rather, the Triune God is angered by the indifference, injustice, and impiety of a people who have fallen from the True Faith.

And all the while the day is characterized by the sounds of lawnmowers, power tools, and mundane machines.

It's not hard to find.  Any Sunday in the year you will find people mowing their lawns, painting their homes, repairing household items, cleaning their cars, and doing other mundane activities that we are explicitly forbidden to do by the Third Commandment.  A Christian commits a sin by so doing unless he receives explicit dispensation from a priest (e.g. to fix a leaking pipe, etc).

Has holiness gone from among men?  Does no one care any longer for the sanctity of Sunday?

"And shewing mercy unto thousands to them that love me, and keep my commandments. Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that shall take the name of the Lord his God in vain. Remember that thou keep holy the sabbath day. [9] Six days shalt thou labour, and shalt do all thy works. But on the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God: thou shalt do no work on it, thou nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy beast, nor the stranger that is within thy gates. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and the sea, and all things that are in them, and rested on the seventh day: therefore the Lord blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it" (Exodus 20:6-10).

Have we forgotten the words of Our Lady of La Salette?

Melanie Calvat and Maximin Giraud were two children from Corps, France, near the town of Grenoble in the southeastern part of France. When Melanie was 14, and Maximin was 11, they were watching cattle in a pasture when they saw a globe of light that "opened" to reveal a most beautiful woman, clad in long dress and apron, with a shawl that crossed in front and tied in back. Around her neck was a Crucifix that depicted the instruments of the Passion, and on her head were a cap and roses. She sat on a rock with her face in her hands weeping.   The Lady said that unless the people repented of working on Sundays and of blasphemy, she'd be forced to let go her Son's arm because it had grown so heavy. She said that crop blights and famine would follow if her wishes weren't heeded.

If we have forgotten the message of Our Lady of La Sallette, have we also forgotten the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title Our Lady of the Willow Tree?

The follow story is a powerful one.  It is quoted from the Society of St. Pius X's Canadian website:
Many years ago in the village of Plantees, France, there lived a farmer named Pierre Port-
Combet, who used to work on Sundays and Feast Days. At one time he had been a Catholic, but he had fallen away from the truth Faith and joined a Protestant religion called Calvinism. He had a great dislike for Catholics and anything about the Catholic Faith. 
Pierre had married a devout Catholic woman named Jeanne. They had six children and Jeanne tried to raise them as good Catholics. But even though Pierre had made a vow to allow his wife to raise their children as Catholics, he gradually led their six children into the Calvinist religion! Jeanne was broken hearted about this because it meant that her husband and children were in great danger of loosing their souls. And since Pierre would not listen to her pleadings, the best she could do was to go to Mass, pray, and make sacrifices. 
This area of France was very Catholic at the time. There was a law that all people should not work on Sundays and on special Holy Days, so that they could go to Mass and spend the rest of the day in prayer and holy reading. But Pierre loved to break this law, especially on Our Lady's Feast Days, because he did not like the Catholic religion! 
On March 25, 1649, the Feast of the Annunciation, Pierre showed his dislike for the Catholic Church by working near a road where villagers could see him, as they traveled on their way to Mass. He pretended to work, by using his knife to cut into a willow tree, which grew beside the road. But as soon as he cut into the willow, the tree bled! Pierre was shocked as the blood flowed out of the tree and splashed onto his hands and arms. At first Pierre thought he was wounded, but finding that he was not injured, he stabbed the willow tree another time, and again the tree bled! 
Around this time, Pierre's wife passed by on her way to church. Seeing that her husband's arms were covered with blood, she rushed over to help him. While she was looking for the wound, Pierre tried to explain to his wife what had just taken place. Jeanne tried to calm her husband and cut the tree with his knife, but nothing happened. When Pierre noticed that no blood came from the tree, he grabbed the knife from his wife and cut off a willow branch. The blood came gushing out of the tree! 
By now Pierre was terribly frightened! He called to Louis, a neighbour who was just passing by, and begged him to come and see what happened. But when Louis took the knife and tried to cut the tree, no blood came out. As the other villagers passed by they began to realize that the blood from the tree was a warning from God to Pierre, so that he would come back to the Catholic Faith and not work on Sundays. 
Before long, Pierre was brought to court for working on this special Feast Day and he had to pay a fine. And when the Bishop heard about the miracle of the bleeding willow tree, he ordered some priests to look into the matter. Pierre and others who saw the miracle were questioned. In the end it was decided that this miracle was a stern warning from God to Pierre, so that he would mend his ways! 
Pierre had a change of heart and realizing that he was wrong, he would often go to pray near the willow tree. But when some of his Calvinist friends saw him, they threatened to hurt him if he left the Calvinist religion. Because of this Pierre refused to go back to the Catholic Church. 
Heaven was watching over Pierre and after seven years, on March 25, 1656, Our Lady appeared to him. On that day, Pierre was working in the field and saw a Lady standing far away on a little hill. The Lady wore a white dress, a blue mantle and had a black veil over her head, which partly covered her face. As the Lady came toward Pierre, she suddenly picked up speed and in a flash, she stood beside him. With her beautiful, sweet voice, the Lady spoke to Pierre, "God be with you my friend!" 
For a moment, Pierre stood in amazement. The Lady spoke again, "What is being said about this devotion? Do many people come?" 
Pierre replied, "Yes many people come," 
Then the Lady said, "Where does that heretic live who cut the willow tree? Does he not want to be converted?" 
Pierre mumbled an answer. The Lady became more serious, "Do you think that I do not know that you are the heretic? Realize that your end is at hand. If you do not return to the True Faith, you will be cast into Hell! But if you change your beliefs, I shall protect you before God. Tell people to pray that they may gain the good graces which, God in His mercy has offered to them."
Pierre was filled with sorrow and shame and moved away from the Lady. Suddenly realizing that he was being rude, Pierre stepped closer to her, but she had moved away and was already near the little hill. He ran after her begging, "Please stop and listen to me. I want to apologize to you and I want you to help me!" 
The Lady stopped and turned. By the time Pierre caught up to her, she was floating in the air and was already disappearing from sight. Suddenly, Pierre realized that the Most Blessed Virgin Mary had appeared to him! He fell to his knees and cried buckets of tears, "Jesus and Mary I promise you that I will change my life and become a good Catholic. I am sorry for what I have done and I beg you please, to help me change my life…" 
On August 14, 1656, Pierre became very sick. An Augustinian priest came to hear his confession and accepted him back into the Catholic Church. Pierre received Holy Communion the next day on the Feast of the Assumption. After Pierre returned to the Catholic Faith, many others followed him. His son and five daughters came back to the Catholic Church as well as many Calvinists and Protestants. Five weeks later on September 8, 1656, Pierre died and was buried under the miraculous willow tree, just as he had asked. 
Fr. Fais, the parish priest from the nearby town of Vinay, helped a lady to buy the field where Pierre had spoken to Our Lady. In time the chapel of Our Lady of Good Meeting was built on the spot where Our Lady had spoken to Pierre. Soon, a large church was built over the spot of the miraculous tree, and named in honour of Our Lady of the Willow. Some good person also carved a statue of Our Lady similar to the way Pierre had described the Blessed Virgin Mary. When this statue was placed in the church, many people came to honour Our Lady of the Willow. 
But alas, because of the sinfulness of man, this beautiful shrine did not last and was ruined by members of the horrible French Revolution. These wicked men took the statue of Our Lady of the Willow and chopped it to pieces! Oh, what a terrible way to treat Our Lady's image! 
However, all was not lost! A good lady gathered up the pieces of the statue and hid them until the French Revolution was over. A piece of the willow tree was also saved from the hands of these wicked men. 
After the horrible French Revolution, people came again to honour Our Lady of the Willow at this sacred spot. The statue of Our Lady was repaired and in time the shrine was placed in the hands of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate. Now some priests were caring for the shrine and could help the many people who came there. 
In 1856, two hundred years after the apparition of Our Lady to Pierre, Blessed Pope Pius IX decreed that the statue of Our Lady should be crowned on September 8 of that year. More than 30,000 people were present at the shrine for the crowning of Our Lady of the Willow, and at least four hundred priests were also present at the ceremony. And this same Pope ordered that another crowning should take place in 1873! 
On March 17, 1924, Pope Pius XI declared that Our Lady of the Willow Church was now a minor basilica. Here the statue of Our Lady of the Willow is venerated. A box containing a piece of the old willow tree lies under her altar and Pierre's grave is at the foot of the altar.
Many people come to honour Our Lady of the Willow at this shrine and many have left little plaques in thanksgiving to Our Lady, for some special grace which she has given them. Also more than a hundred miracles are reported to have taken place at this shrine. Thank-you Jesus and Mary for your great mercies. 
Our Lady of the Willow, Pray for Us! 

We have a moral obligation to stand against the onslaught of sin in this world.  Next time you see someone cutting the lawn, painting their home, etc on a Sunday remind them to stop.  It is a spiritual work of mercy to admonish sinners.  Doing so with prudence and charity is the key.  Standing against sin is necessary lest we too participate in their sin by our quiet acceptance of it.

If you have a concern about approaching the person or truly believe it would not bring about their conversion, at least take the time to leave them an anonymous note in their mailbox or print off a page such as this one (http://www.fisheaters.com/lordsday.html) and drop off the information in their box.

In the words of the Holy Father Pope Pius XII in Mediator Dei: "How will those Christians not fear spiritual death whose rest on Sundays and feast days is not devoted to religion and piety, but given over to the allurements of the world! Sundays and holidays must be made holy by divine worship which gives homage to God and heavenly food to the soul....Our soul is filled with the greatest grief when we see how the Christian people profane the afternoon of feast days...."

As a final recommendation, considering reading The Land Without a Sunday by Maria Von Trapp.

O Lord, deliver us from evil!
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Sunday, August 3, 2014
Video: Pascua Florida Annual Pilgrimage: The Spanish Colonization of Florida



In April 1513, Juan Ponce de Leon landed on the northeast coast of Florida and planted the first cross in the sand. The early heroic martyrs endured deplorable conditions bringing the Faith to native Indians and ministering to the settlers. Modern day Catholics may not face death of body but the irreligious atmosphere cries for evangelization! Come walk the path of the martyrs from St. Thomas More Chapel in Sanford Florida to the oldest known site of the First Mass in North America and Nombre de Dios Shrine in St. Augustine.

Join the pilgrimage on April 7-12, 2015.  For registration forms, please email your request to: pascuapilgrimage@earthlink.net
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Sunday, July 27, 2014
Round 2: Old & Collectible Catholic Books for Sale

In an update to my post of last week, I also have these titles for sale:

Prices include shipping.  Please email me at acatholiclife[at]gmail[dot]com for more information or to order.

"Worship, the Life of the Missions," Hofinger et al, 1958, good condition, Univ. Notre Dame publ., hb, $25.

"The What and Why of Catholicism," Charles Paris, 1961, Wagner publ., good condition, hb, $25.

"The Catholic Catechism," Peter Cardinal Gasparri, 1932, Kenedy publ., fair condition, hb., $25.

"Why I Am a Catholic," Paul Thomson, 1959, Nelson publ. very good condition, hb., $25.

"Life in Christ," Killgallon and Weber, 1958, CCD publ., catechism in good condition, good condition, pb, $20

"What's the Truth about Catholics," Rev. John O'Brien, Our Sunday Visitor press, good condition, hb, $25.

"The Catholic Creed," Father Proctor, 1907, Art and Book Co. publ., hb, good condition with some cover staining and library markings, $25.

"You Too Can Win Souls," Rev. John O'Brien, 1955, MacMillan publ., hb, very good condition, $25.

"The Church of Christ, "Sylvester Berry, DD, 1941, Herder publ., hb, fair condition with some tape on cover, $25.

"Spurs to Conversion," Rev. Edw. Betowski, 1937, Benziger publ., hb in good condition, $25.

"The Spirituality of the Mass," Adolph Frenay, OP, St.Paul Editions, hb in very good condition, $25.

"Of God and Our Redemption (Catechism)," unattributed, Herder publ., #2, pb., good condition, 1959-61, $20
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Book Review: Sacred Fire: Practicing Devotion to the Heart of Jesus

I was recently given the opportunity to read and review Sacred Fire: Practicing Devotion to the Heart of Jesus by Philip Michael Bulman. To begin, the synopsis of the book states:
On the night before He died, Jesus called His disciples to abide in Him. This startling invitation to an intimate relationship with God is a great gift to all generations. The devotion to the Sacred Heart gives Catholics a practical way to respond to this invitation. Each of us can experience the love of Jesus in a way that transforms our own hearts.

Sacred Fire illuminates the rich scriptural roots of the Sacred Heart devotion and recounts how it has evolved through the centuries. More importantly, it provides steps anyone can take to experience the infinite blessings of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Embracing the Sacred Heart devotion brings the believer into a dynamic, personal relationship with Jesus. Lukewarm souls become fervent, and fervent souls enjoy ever greater blessings of Divine Mercy that begin in this life and last for all eternity.
Mr. Bulman has composed a truly beautiful book for the honor of God and devotion to the Most Sacred Heart of our Redeemer.  The book is written in a way that makes the pages go by with interest.  The book is a truly spiritual one - I found myself drawn repeatedly to prayer while reading of the saints who labored so long for the Devotion of the Sacred Heart.

Each chapter beings with several lines of Scripture which are well worth of meditation.  The actual text of the book delves into the various apparitions of our Lord and the writings of the saints (e.g. Gertrude the Great, Margaret Mary, John Eudes, and many others).  This is truly a unique book that brings together so many sources of writings and accounts into one complete volume documenting the spread of Devotion to the Sacred Heart.  Mr. Bulman shows in great detail how devotion to the Sacred Heart stretches back centuries before St. Margaret Mary's visions and how it is well rooted in Scripture.  Saints who I am not even familiar with were included to create a single, complete volume on devotion to the Sacred Heart.

Sacred Fire is written in a manner that is easy to read for all Catholics.  You do not have to have a Theology degree or be an expert in doctrine to read and understand and, most importantly, learn from this book.  Mr. Bulman's book is truly for everyone.  I am happy to recommend it.
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Thursday, July 24, 2014
Old & Collectible Catholic Books for Sale

UPDATED: JULY 25TH 8:30 PM CDT

I'm currently looking to get rid of the following books.  And I would like to offer them here at a relatively cheap price considering that many of them are old and collectible.  Prices include shipping.  Please email me at acatholiclife[at]gmail[dot]com for more information or to order.

"The Early Liturgy," by Josef Jungmann, SJ, 1959-62, 305 pp., Notre Dame Press, very good condition, $25 (shipping price always included), hardback

"Catholic Faith Explained," Book Three, Kirsch and Brendan, 1940, Kenedy publ., good condition (Teacher Manual), hb, $25

"Father Smith Instructs Jackson," Noll and Fallon, 228 pp., 1954 ed., paperback, good condition, $20

"The Defense of the Catholic Church," Francis X. Doyle, SJ, 502 pp., 1927, Benziger publ., fair condition with cover stains, hb, $25

"The New Interpretation of the Mass," Henry Borgmann, CSsR, 212 pp., Murphy publ., 1933, good condition, hb, $25

"Interpreting the Sunday Mass," Wm.  Bonniwell, OP, 132 pp., 1949, Kenedy publ., good condition with cover stain, hb, $20

"Catholic Evidence Training Outlines," Maisie Ward, 279 pp., 1929 ed., Sheed & Ward, good condition, hb, $25

"Rite and Man: Natural Sacredness and Christian Liturgy," Louis Bouyer, 218 pp., 1963, Notre Dame Press, very good condition, hb, $25
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Wednesday, July 23, 2014
The Eucharistic Storms: Communion in the hand and the marginalizing of the Real Presence

"ITS ABOUT TIME a book on Communion in the hand be written with such zeal for the Holy Sacrament. There is no denying that the foundation of the modern day crisis in the Church is the widespread contempt toward the Holy Eucharist, fostered largely by the practice of Communion in the hand. Thanks to this illicit practice a sense of "Eucharistic atheism" prevails throughout the Church. It has truly caused the Church in our time to forget God and laugh at the Sacred Mysteries.

"But it has also provided satanists with free access to come into the church and steal the Host during Mass, so that they take it back to their covens where it is stomped and abused in the ritualistic Black Mass to satan. For this reason satanists introduced Communion in the Hand in the late sixties, and then used the rebellious "Rhine bishops" to execute their plan after Vatican II. Satan's infiltration of the hierarchy (Third Secret) is what led to the change of religion we have seen in our time, and is what is preventing the clergy from abolishing Communion in the Hand today. A spirit of fear holds the hierarchy fast. Under the illusion of divine guidance the clergy are being led by temptation. According to the testimony of ex-satanists, Communion in the hand is the greatest thing that ever happened to them, so why is the hierarchy assisting them? Even if everything else in the Mass is done right, Communion in the Hand will continue to cheapen the Faith and advance the apostasy that is already so widespread. The Church will never be restored to orthodoxy unless this practice is stopped! The quickest and easiest way is to restore the old Mass which forbids Communion in the hand."

Source: David Martin

Check out The Eucharistic Storms: Communion in the hand and the marginalizing of the Real Presence and check out my prior post on the topic: Mission Restore Eucharistic Reverence.
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Thursday, July 17, 2014
Humility of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Mass in Some Places)

July 17th, besides being the Feast of St. Alexius (III Class), is dedicated to the Humility of the Blessed Virgin Mary in some parts of the world.


The following is taken from Father Lawrence G. Lovasik on this Feast:

Humility Of The Blessed Virgin Mary
Feast, July 17
(Triduum, July 14-16)

1. Mary, Mother of God, humility is the virtue you especially practised from childhood. The saints tell me that it is the foundation and guard of all virtues, since without humility a soul can possess no other virtue. Your loving Son came to teach this virtue to mankind by His example, and He desired that we should especially strive to imitate Him, for He said, "Learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your souls" (Matt. 11, 29). As you were the first and most perfect disciple of Jesus in all the virtues, you were the first and most perfect disciple also in humility. First of all, because of your humility you merited to be exalted above all creatures.

The first characteristic of humility of heart is a humble opinion of oneself. You always had so lowly an opinion of yourself that, although you realized how many more graces and favors were bestowed upon you than upon others, you still preferred all others before yourself. Of course, you never thought of yourself as a sinner for humility is truth, and you knew that you had never offended God.

Mary, My Mother, you did acknowledge having received greater graces from God than had any other creature, for a humble heart always acknowledges the special favors of God that it may humble itself the more. But by the greater light you possessed for recognizing the infinite greatness and goodness of God, you recognized also your own littleness, and, therefore, you humbled yourself more than all others: you ever had before your eyes the majesty of God against your nothingness as His creature. The more you beheld yourself enriched, the more humble did you become, remembering that all came to you from the infinite generosity of your Maker. No creature in the world has been more exalted than you, because no creature in the world has ever humbled himself more.

2. Mary, Mother of God, your humility was expressed especially in the Annunciation. You were fully enlightened as to the greatness of the dignity of a Mother of God. Though you had already been assured by the angel that you were this happy Mother chosen by the Lord, you did not stop to rejoice in your exaltation. Seeing your own nothingness as compared with the infinite majesty of God, who chose you for His Mother, you acknowledged how unworthy you were of so great honor, but you did not oppose His will in the least thing. Filled with deep humility, and yet on fire with desire to unite yourself still more closely to God, you abandoned yourself entirely to the Divine will and answered, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done to me according to thy word" (Luke 1, 38).

Mary, My Mother, you showed your humility by striving to conceal from others the gifts you received from God. You concealed even from your beloved spouse, Saint Joseph, the important fact that you were the chosen Mother of God, and you awaited God's good pleasure to reveal the great mystery to him.
In your humility you refused praise, giving all the praise and glory to God. When your cousin Saint Elizabeth greeted you as blessed among women, you answered, "My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior because he has regarded the lowliness of his handmaid" (Luke 1, 46). You humbled yourself so deeply because you knew that of and by yourself you were nothing and had nothing. Therefore, you gave your praise to the Creator and Giver of every good and perfect gift.
In your humility you wished to serve others rather than to be served. You visited the house of Zachary to serve your cousin Elizabeth for three months. Later in the public life of Jesus, you sought no attention. At one time when you wanted to speak with Jesus, your humility forbade you to enter the house where He was preaching until you were asked to do so.

In your humility you gladly suffered contempt with Jesus. We do not find you in Jerusalem on Palm Sunday, when your divine Son was received with so much honor by the people. But we do find you standing beneath the cross on Calvary, when your Son was derided and mocked. You did not shrink from the disgrace of being recognized as the Mother of one condemned to die a shameful death.

3. Mary, Mother of God, teach me to be truly humble. Since I sincerely love you, I want to follow your example; this is the greatest honor I can pay you. For my proud nature, humility is most difficult to practise. But I can never be your true child if I am not humble. You invite none to come to you but the lowly of spirit. It is under the mantle of humility that you will protect me. Clothe me with your own humility.

Teach me the real kind of ambition, that is, greatness in God's eyes. Only childlike humility entitles me to the first place in God's estimation and consequently, in heaven also. The degree of childlike humility I have attained in life will be the degree of my greatness in heaven. Help me to see that humility is nothing more nor less than a just and equal judgment of myself, my talents, my opportunities and the use I make of them.
Humility is not belittling myself, but taking the place which rightly belongs to me, not a higher place, nor a lower, but the true and just place where God wants me. For if I have any ability, any worth or goodness, the glory is not mine, but God's. Without God I can do nothing. All that I am or have. He has given me. This is truly your spirit, as you expressed it at the Visitation: "Behold, henceforth all generations shall call me blessed: because he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name" (Luke 1, 48).

Mary, My Mother, I beg you for this humility which is so necessary for me that without it I cannot enter God's kingdom, as Jesus reminded His disciples, "Unless you turn and become like little children, you will not enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Matt. 18, 3). I beg you for this humility which is loved both by God and men for in it lies something sublime—a living resemblance to Jesus and to you.


Blessed Mother, teach me humility. Help me to become a child in your school. Let me know nothing else except this entire surrender of myself to God, this simple childlike act of the heart, as I cast myself into the Arms of Jesus and promise Him my fidelity. To love Jesus, to do His will, to accept all from His hands—let this be my humility, as it was yours!
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