Sunday, November 23, 2014
The Sanctus Candle During Low Mass
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 Notice the small candle lit on the altar.  Msgr. Michael Schmitz, ICRSS, celebrating Mass in Stockholm, Sweden. Photo copyright Daniel Nygård.

While those familiar with the Traditional Latin Mass will know of the candles lit and used by the torchbearers for the Consecration at the High Mass, have you noticed a special sanctus candle at a Low Mass?

Fr. Ronald Brown describes:
Being that the "Low Mass" is really a "cut down" version of the High Mass (which is more proper but not practical in most parishes) the one Sanctus candle remains. In some places a "sanctus candle" was lit on a wall bracket on each side of the altar, or on the floor.

The use of the sanctus candle is required by the rubrics and ignored by most...it is called the "sanctus" or "elevation" candle and lit prior to the Canon. The rubrics mandate the use of it.
 The Catholic Encyclopedia describes it accordingly:

"The rubrics of the "Roman Missal" direct that at the Sanctus, even of any private Mass, an additional candle should be lighted and should burn until after the Communion of the priest. This rubric however is much neglected in practice even in Rome itself." in this pic you see it at the Epistle side of the altar.
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Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Nativity Stone Rosary: A One-of-a-Kind Rosary
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Last week I received the most beautiful Rosary that I have ever owned.  What makes this Rosary truly special to me, besides the Victorian style to which I am particularly attached, is that on the crucifix is a Nativity Stone.  The Nativity stone is a true piece from the Cave of the Nativity in Bethlehem.

The Nativity Stone is not a relic but it is a powerful connection with the birth of the Divine Son of God. To be able to hold next to our heart a piece of the Cave in which the Lord was born is truly priceless.


(Pictured here is the incredibly beautiful Victorian Prayer Rosary.  The beads, layered in 22K gold, along with the Nativity stone, make this the most beautiful Rosary that I own.  I was elated when I opened the package and found such a beautiful Rosary inside).

Nativity Stones Crosses are unique as they are the only ones selling a cross that contains a stone from the Cave of The Nativity in Bethlehem. In the heart of each piece is a one of a kind authentic Nativity Stone from one time excavation that took place in 1963.

In year 2000 Nativity Stones were even honored with a plaque placed in the Vatican.  The Victorian Prayer Rosary was presented to Cardinal Ruini at the Vatican during the dedication of the Nativity Stones plaque during the year of the 2000 Jubilee.

Each cross includes a numbered certificate of authenticity signed by the Priest of the Church of the Nativity and a booklet telling the story.  

The Rosary itself came in a beautiful velvet gift bag with a draw string.  Along with it came the certificate of authenticity and a wonderful handout on the Nativity Stones.

Nativity Stone sells various Rosaries and crosses each containing a stone from the Nativity. 

I would encourage all of you to check out their website and I happily endorse this.  They can be found at: http://www.nativitystonescollection.com/


A Special Offer to my readers: 20% OFF with Coupon Code: Catholic20 

To learn more about the remarkable Nativity Stones story, please visit: NativityStonesCollection.com

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Monday, November 17, 2014
Support St. Joseph's School in Armada, Michigan
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Please join me in supporting St. Joseph's School in Michigan, a Traditional Catholic school that is presently in much need of financial assistance.  Would you considering helping them by sending a donation?
Dear friends,

In the past you have shown an interest in our work here at St. Joseph's Academy, Armada, MI. Please find attached our autumn letter. We hope you enjoy the read!

God bless you all,
Father John Brucciani, principal
www.academysaintjoseph.com

Their latest letter to benefactors is as follows:

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Sunday, November 16, 2014
Traditional Mass Propers: 23rd Sunday after Pentecost
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INTROIT Jer. 29:11, 12, 14
Said the Lord: "I think thoughts of peace and not of affliction. You shall call upon Me and I will hear you, and I will bring you back from captivity from all places." Ps. 84:2. Lord, You have blessed Your land; You have restored Jacob from captivity. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT - Forgive the offenses of Your people, O Lord, so that through Your merciful goodness we may be freed from the bondage of sin into which we were led by our own weakness. Through Our Lord . . .


EPISTLE
Philipp. 3:17-21; 4:1-3
Brethren: Be ye followers of me, and mark those who walk after the pattern you have in us. For many walk, of whom I have told you often (and now tell you weeping) that they are enemies of the cross of Christ: Whose end is destruction: whose God is their belly: and whose glory is in their shame: who mind earthly things. But our conversation is in heaven: from whence also we look for the Saviour, our Lord Jesus Christ, Who will reform the body of our lowness, made like to the body of his glory, according to the operation whereby also he is able to subdue all things unto himself. Therefore my dearly beloved brethren and most desired, my joy and my crown: so stand fast in the Lord, my dearly beloved. I beg of Evodia and I beseech Syntyche to be of one mind in the Lord. And I entreat thee also, my sincere companion, help those women who have labored with me in the gospel, with Clement and the rest of my fellow laborers, whose names are in the book of life.

GRADUAL
You have freed us from those who afflict us, O Lord, and You have put to shame those who hate us. V. In God we will glory all the day, and praise Your name forever. 

Alleluia, alleluia! Ps. 129:1-2 Out of the depths I cry to You, O Lord; Lord, hear my prayer! Alleluia!

GOSPEL
Matt. 9:18-26

At that time, as Jesus was speaking these things unto them, behold a certain ruler came up, and adored him, saying: "Lord, my daughter is even now dead; but come, lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live." And Jesus rising up followed him, with his disciples. And behold a woman who was troubled with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment. For she said within herself: "If I shall touch only his garment, I shall be healed." But Jesus turning and seeing her, said: "Be of good heart, daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole." And the woman was made whole from that hour. And when Jesus was come into the house of the ruler, and saw the minstrels and the multitude making a rout, He said: "Give place, for the girl is not dead, but sleepeth." And they laughed him to scorn. And when the multitude was put forth, he went in, and took her by the hand. And the maid arose. And the fame hereof went abroad into all that country.


OFFERTORY
Ps. 129:1-2
Out of the depths I cry to You, O Lord; Lord, hear my prayer, out of the depths I cry to You, O Lord.

SECRET  We offer this sacrifice of praise, O Lord, to fulfill our debt of service to You. May Your blessings which we cannot merit, continue to reach us through Your boundless mercy. Through Our Lord . . .

COMMUNION
Mark 11:24
Amen I say to you, all things whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you shall receive, and they shall come to you.

POST COMMUNION -  You have given us the happiness of participating in this Heavenly Banquet, O Almighty God. Let us not now fall victim to any human danger. Through Our Lord . . .

Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945

Instruction of Fr. Leonard Goffine for the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost from The Church's Year.

I. Filial was the faith, unbounded the confidence, profound the humility of this woman, and therefore, she received health also. Learn from this, how pleasing to the Lord is faith, confidence and humility; let your prayer always be penetrated by these three virtues, and you will receive whatever you ask.

II. The devout Louis de Ponte compares the conduct of this woman to our conduct at Holy Communion, and says: Christ wished to remain with us in the most holy Eucharist, clothed with the garment of the sacramental species of bread, that he who receives His sacred flesh and blood, may be freed from evil concupiscence. If you wish to obtain the health of your soul, as did this woman the health of the body, imitate her. Receive the flesh and blood of Jesus with the most profound humility, with the firmest confidence in His power and goodness, and like this woman you too will be made whole.

https://www.amazon.com/Churchs-Year-Rev-Leonard-Goffine/dp/0963903241/ref=as_sl_pc_ss_til?tag=acatlif-20&linkCode=w01&linkId=BR66BJYHJLFCU6BC&creativeASIN=0963903241

III. Jesus called three dead persons to life, the twelve year old daughter of Jairus, ruler of the synagogue, of whom there is mention made in this gospel, the young man at Naim, (Luke 7:14) and Lazarus. (John. 11:43) By these three dead persons three classes of sinners may be understood: the maiden signifies those who sin in their youth through weakness and frailty, but touched by the grace of God, perceive their fall and easily rise again through penance; by the young man at Naim those are to be understood who sin repeatedly and in public, these require greater grace, more labor and severer penance; by Lazarus, the public and obdurate habitual sinners are to be understood who can be raised to spiritual life only by extraordinary graces and severe public penance.

IV. Christ did not raise the maiden, until the minstrels and noisy multitude were removed, by which He wished to teach us that the conversion of a soul cannot be accomplished in the midst of the noise and turmoil of temporal cares, idle pleasures and associations.

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Saturday, November 15, 2014
Nativity Fast: 40 Days of Fasting for Christmas
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November 15th in the Eastern Rite Churches begins the Nativity Fast. This 40-day long period fasting is a preparation for the holy celebration of Christmas. Like Lent, the Eastern Churches observe a period of 40 days of fasting in preparation for the Nativity of the Lord.

The Tradition of fasting in anticipation for the Nativity of the Lord is not unique to the Eastern Churches - the Latin Rite of the Church had observed this practice for centuries. Latin Rite Catholics today may certainly still observe fasting during this time to spiritually prepare themselves for Christmas. 

Beginning with Vespers on November 15th, the Nativity Fast continues until just before Vespers on Christmas Eve. As with all periods of fasting, Fasting is forbidden on Sundays. Due to many popular feast days occurring between now and December 9th, many places began to adapt the fast to begin on December 10th. Latin Rite Catholics traditionally fasted on the Vigil of the Immaculate Conception (December 7th) and on the Vigil of the Nativity (December 24th). Those two days should still be observed by Roman Catholics. In years when these days fall on a Sunday, fasting is suppressed.

The fast's purpose is to spiritually prepare the soul for drawing closer to God. Along with our fasting, we must increase our own prayer life, almsgiving, and good works. Fasting without increased prayer should never be done.

The guidelines for the Nativity fast, in most of the Eastern Catholic churches, are as follows: 
 All days except Sundays, from November 15 to December 12:  
• Abstinence from: All Meats, Dairy Products and Eggs – no animal products.
• No abstinence from: Shellfish, Grains, Vegetables & Vegetable Products, Olive Oil; Fruit, Wine On Sundays fish is allowed until the final week of the Nativity Fast. On Wednesdays and Fridays, the usual year-round restrictions apply.  
December 13 to 24:  
• Abstinence from: All Meat Products, Dairy Products, Eggs, Fish, Olive Oil, Wine
• No abstinence from: Vegetables & Vegetable Products, Fruits and Grains  
On Wednesdays and Fridays, food should not be eaten between meals, and meals themselves should be moderate in size. It is often customary to eat only one meal a day. During the Nativity Fast, from December 13 to December 24 inclusive, the Fast becomes stricter, and olive oil and wine are permitted only on Saturdays and Sundays. Fish is not permitted from the 13th to the 24th. 

Because of the Tradition of Fasting on Christmas Eve in the Roman Catholic Church, that evening is traditionally observed by the Feast of 7 Fishes.

Above all, this time of year as we approach Advent, consider the End of Times and our own Judgment, and await the celebration of the Nativity of Christ, let us embrace some fasting. Fasting on Wednesday and Fridays during this time is preferrable to not fasting at all. Consult your spiritual director and consider undertaking more fasting, almsgiving, and prayer during this preparation time. And when Christmas comes, let us celebrate it joyfully and festively throughout January and until Candlemas on February 2nd. While the world celebrates too early and ceases celebrating on the 2nd day of Christmas, let us not make that same grave mistake.

Source: Antiochian.org
Image Source: HolyApostlesGo.org
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Traditional Catholicism in Africa
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Traditional Catholicism is continuing to grow in Africa.  Below is a copy of the 14th Issue of  Catholic Tradition in Africa.  It is an inspiring portrayal of the Society of St. Pius X's work to save souls in Africa.  This issue features their work in Ghana, Cameroon, and Namibia.

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Friday, November 14, 2014
Feast of St. Josaphat
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Martyrdom of Josaphat Kuntsevych by Józef Simmler, National Museum in Warsaw

Today is the Feast of St. Josaphat.  In Milwaukee, Wisconsin the beautiful Basilica dedicated to St. Josaphat is one of the greatest architectural wonders in the Midwest.

St. Josaphat is a martyr who lived as a monk and the archbishop of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church in modern-day Belarus.  He was martyred on November 12, 1623.  He was beatified in 1643 but not canonized until 1867 by Blessed Pope Pius IX.  His body rests today in St. Peter's Basilica under the altar of Saint Basil the Great.

St. Josaphat was born to pious parents.  His family were members of the Orthodox Ruthenian Church which, under the Union of Brest in 1595, reunited with the Roman Catholic Church.  As a young man, St. Josaphat declined both an apprenticeship and a marriage proposal to follow the call to the religious live.  In 1604 at the age of 20, he became a monk of the Ukrainian Order of St. Basil and took the name Josaphat.  In 1609 he was ordained a deacon in the Byzantine Rite.  When St. Josaphat's superior was removed from his post for seeking to undermine the union with the Roman Catholic Church, the Archbishop fo Kiev appointed Josaphat as Superior.

St. Josaphat became a renowned priest and believed unity with Rome to be in the greater interest of the Church.  He pursue great personal sanctity and helped win over a large part of the Orthodox faithful in Lithuania to embrace and accept the union with the Roman Catholic Church.

In 1617, he was consecrated as Archbishop of Polotsk, Lithuania.

In 1623 a priest opposed to the Union named Elias shouted insults at Josaphat as he sought to enter his residence.  A mob soon emerged to defend Elias and they invaded the residence of the saint  As St. Josaphat tried to secure the safety of those with him, he suffered martyrdom.

His martyrdom occurred on November 12, 1623.  He was struck in the dead with a halberd while being beaten and shot.  His body was thereafter thrown into the Dvina River but it was later recovered and buried in Biala, Poland.  In a great miracle testifying to the power of God and the holiness of St. Josaphat, his body was found incorruptible five years after his death.

Basilica of St Josaphat Milwaukee
Basilica of St Josaphat in Milwaukee

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Thursday, November 13, 2014
Saint Didacus of Alcalá
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  St. Didacus by Francisco de Zurbarán

1955 Calendar (Semidouble): November 13

Today is the Feast of St. Didacus.  While most people are not aware, the City of San Diego, CA is named after St. Didacus of Alcalá.

St. Didacus was a Spanish lay brother of the Order of Friars Minor who served as among the first group of missionaries to the newly conquered Canary Islands. He was born in c. 1400 to poor yet pious parents who named him after St. James, the patron saint of Spain.  In Spanish, St. James is called "St. Santiago" and Diego is a derivative of Santiago.

Even as a young age he was called to the religious life.  He joined the Order of Friars Minor at the friary in Albaida.  He is remembered today for his missionary work in the New World.  For a time he also headed a large monastery he had founded there. St. Didacus was above all a contemplative, and his abundant good works were the fruit of his ardent love of Christ. His charity for the sick was especially moving.

He died at Alcalá de Henares on 12 November 1463.
"St. Didacus was canonized by Pope Sixtus V in 1588, the first after a long hiatus following the Reformation, and the first of a lay brother of the Order of Friars Minor. His feast day is celebrated on 13 November, since 12 November, the anniversary of his death, was occupied, first, by that of Pope Saint Martin I, then by that of the Basilian monk and Eastern Catholic bishop and martyr, Josaphat Kuntsevych" (Source).

There are many miracles attributed to the intercession of St. Didacus.  One such miracle follows:

On a hunting trip, Henry IV of Castile fell from his horse and injured his arm. In intense pain and with his doctors unable to relieve his agony, he went to Alcalá and prayed to Didacus for a cure. The saint's body was removed from his casket and placed beside the king. Henry then kissed the body and placed the saint's hand on his injured arm. The king felt the pain disappear and his arm immediately regained its former strength.

Parroquia de San Diego, Today Printers and Publishers, Bacolod City, Philippines, pp. 176–177
Prayer:

Almighty and eternal God, Your wondrous providence has chosen the weak things of the world to confound the strong. Hear our humble prayer and grant that the prayers of Your blessed confessor Didacus may make us worthy of eternal glory in heaven. Through Our Lord . . .

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Feast of All Saints of the Benedictine Order
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Image: Benedictine Saints

Of the breviaries on my shelf that I use throughout the week is "A Short Breviary for Religious and the Laity" 2nd Edition from The Liturgical Press in 1942.  It is a breviary made by monks of the Benedictine Order. 

On Page 548 there is a note: "Because this Office is also used by the Brothers and the Oblates of the Benedictine Order, the first and second class feasts of the Benedictine Calendar are added to those of the Roman Calendar."

And today, November 13th, is the Feast of "All Saints of the Benedictine Order."  Today, as such, is a great day for us to rejoice in the life of St. Benedictine and the many other Benedictine saints.  And there are hundreds of them!  Click here for a list.

Prayer:

Grant, we beseech Thee, O Lord, that the example of the holy monks may stir us to a better life, so that we may imitate the actions of those whose solemnity we celebrate.  Through our Lord.  Amen.
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Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Angelus Press Catholic Trivia Game: My Review
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Along with the 2015 Angelus Press Calendar, I received the other week a fascinating new Catholic Trivia game in the mail.

Long time in the making and finally available from Angelus Press is the game, Catholic Trivia: Traditional Version is really quite a product.  If you are looking for a way to study and learn the Faith in a really fun game format, this product is for you.  I was quite amazed by the depth of the questions.  Even someone very familiar with Church history and the lives of the saints will undoubtedly learn something from this game.

The game has 500 cards containing 1500 questions stemming from 6 categories:

  1. Baltimore Catechism
  2. The traditional Mass
  3. History and the Liturgical Calendar
  4. Popes, Patron Saints and Other Pious People
  5. Ritual, Symbol, and Doctrine
  6. Et Cetera


And considering that this fun yet highly edifying and educational game is only $24.95, it's well worth the investment.  Please consider buying one today.  I'm highly recommending this one!

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Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Happy Martinmas! (And 96th Anniversary of Armistice Day)
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Today is a two-fold celebration.

Firstly, today is Martinmas, the Feast of St. Martin of Tours, and a great celebration in the Catholic sense.  This is the end of the autumn season and essentially a “Catholic Thanksgiving.”  There are many traditions associated with today.  I encourage you to read up on them by clicking here.  You may also read the life of St. Martin of Tours here.


Secondly, today is Veterans Day (originally called Armistice Day).  President Woodridge Wilson, an anti-Catholic at heart, started this day.  While today is a fitting day for us to recall the lives of those who perished and honor their service and commend the repose of their souls to God in prayer, let us not forget the Catholic sense of praying for the dead and those in the military.

And let us not forget that today is the celebration of Martinmas!

The Feast coincides not only with the end of the Octave of All Souls, but with harvest time, the time whennewly-produced wine is ready for drinking, and the end of winter preparations, including the butchering of animals (an old English saying is "His Martinmas will come as it does to every hog," meaning "he will get his comeuppance" or "everyone must die"). Because of this, St. Martin's Feast is much like the American Thanksgiving (celebrated on the 4th Thursday in November) -- a celebration of the earth's bounty. Because it also comes before the penitential season of Advent, it is seen as a mini "carnivale" with all the feasting and bonfires. As at Michaelmas on 29 September, goose is eaten in most places (the goose is a symbol for St. Martin himself. It is said that as he was hiding from the people who wanted to make him Bishop, a honking goose gave away his hiding spot), but unlike most Catholics, those of Britain and Ireland prefer pork or beef on this day.  Source:  Fisheaters.com 

The Eleventh Day of the Eleventh Month at the Eleventh Hour...

Before Omaha Beach, D-Day (June 1944)

If I should die, think only this of me:
That there's some corner of a foreign field
That is forever England. There shall be

During World War I (1914 - 1918)

In that rich earth a richer dust concealed;
A dust whom England bore, shaped, made aware,
Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam,

Funeral Mass (Date Unknown)

A body of England's, breathing English air,
Washed by the rivers blest by the suns of home.

Mass on the Battlefield (Date Unknown)

And think, this heart, all evil shed away,
A pulse in the eternal mind, no less
Gives somewhere back the thought by England given;

Mass on the Battlefield (Date Unknown)

Her sights and sounds; dreams happy as her day;
And laughter, learnt of friends; and gentleness,
In hearts at peace, under an English Heaven

Source: "The Soldier" by Rupert Brooke (1887 - 1915)

Image Sources: Believed to be in the Public Domain
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Friday, November 7, 2014
November's First Friday Devotion
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Today is the First Friday of November. Because today is the first Friday of the Month, many Catholic parishes will have special Masses today for the First Friday Devotion.

"With foresight, the divine heart of Christ merited and ordered all the favors which we have received, disposing them for each of us in particular. How our hearts would be inflamed with love for so many favors! Consider that they were destined for us by the will of the Father, to be borne in the heart of the Savior, Who earned them for us by His sufferings, above all by His passion." - St. Francis de Sales

Beginning on December 27, 1673, through 1675, Our Lord appeared to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque asking her to receive Him in Holy Communion on the first Friday of every month and to meditate on His passion from 11:00 PM to 12:00 midnight each Thursday. He also revealed to her twelve promises for all who are devoted to His Sacred Heart; he asked for a Feast of the Sacred Heart to be instituted in the liturgical calendar of the Church. Our Lord appeared to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque with twelve promises for those devoted to His Most Sacred Heart.

Promises for those devoted to the Sacred Heart:

1. "I will give them all the graces necessary in their state of life."
2. "I will establish peace in their homes."
3. "I will comfort them in their afflictions."
4. "I will be their secure refuge during life, and above all in death."
5. "I will bestow a large blessing upon all their undertakings."
6. "Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and the infinite ocean of mercy."
7. "Tepid souls shall grow fervent."
8. "Fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection."
9. "I will bless every place where a picture of My Heart shall be set up and honored."
10. "I will give to priests the gift of touching the most hardened hearts."
11. "Those who shall promote this devotion shall have their names written in My Heart, never to be blotted out."
12. "I promise thee in the excessive mercy of My Heart that My all-powerful love will grant to all those who communicate on the First Friday in nine consecutive months, the grace of final penitence; they shall not die in My disgrace nor without receiving the Sacraments; My Divine heart shall be their safe refuge in this last moment."

Prayer of Reparation:


O Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore thee profoundly. I offer thee the most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifferences by which He is offended. By the infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of thee the conversion of poor sinners.
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Thursday, November 6, 2014
Charlemagne: The Catholic Father of Europe
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“One key — probably the most important one — to Charlemagne’s political thought is Augustine’s City of God, which, next to the Bible, was his favorite book. In reflecting on the temporal and heavenly realms, the patriarch took issue with ascetics who urged withdrawal from fallen human society in pursuit of an attainable holiness. He pointed out that perfection is impossible in this world, where divine and satanic forces are locked in constant conflict. The only sinless society will be that which gathers around the throne of God at the end of time. The moral for the leaders of both Church and state was not withdrawal, or even the establishment of monasteries as gateways to perfection, but earnest engagement in the battle against the forces of evil" (Derek Wilson, Charlemagne (New York: Doubleday, 2006), Page: 128.

Charlemagne (c. 742 – 814), the First Christian Western Emperor in nearly 300 years and the Father of Europe, exemplified the knightly aestheticism. Born the son of Pepin the Short, Charles I, who would later be universally known as Charlemagne, served as the King of Franks from 768, King of Italy from 774, and Emperor from 800 until his death in 814.

Born in c. 742 to Pepin the Short, son of Charles Martel, Charlemagne was born in an era after the Christianization of the Franks.  His father would be proclaimed as the first King of the Carolingian Dynasty.  Charlemagne, like his father, would serve as a strong defender of the Papacy.  Upon the death of Pepin the Short, Charlemagne reigned alongside with his brother, Carloman I, from 768 – 771.  Tragically his younger brother died in 771, leaving Charlemagne as the sole ruler of the Franks.
 
The life of Charlemagne is far richer than a mere historical account of battles won and territories conquered.  The story of Charlemagne is a story of a true Christian king who sought the reign of Christ the King.  While at times Charlemagne would over step his authority and impose upon the spiritual realm, which remains distinct but in union with the temporal realm, his policies worked toward a deepening of the spiritual life.

Charlemagne sought to root out all paganism from his vast empire.  He wielded the power to discipline clerics, control ecclesial property, and define doctrine.  From 809 – 810, Charlemagne called a local council in Aachen that called for the Filioque to be added to the Creed.  While Pope Leo III approved the doctrine of the Filioque, he opposed the inclusion of it in the Creed that was set at the First Council of Constantinople in 381.  The Sovereign Pontiff responded by having the original Creed cast in large metal shields to be displayed in St. Peter’s Basilica. Pope Damasus originally approved the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed, and the Council of Chalcedon affirmed that the Council was ecumenical in 451.

Like a true knight, Charles the Great maintained the long established traditions of his fathers. While Charlemagne engaged in reforms of the Frankish government, he retained their traditional practices.   As a Carolingian king, he possessed not only the right to rule and command but also held supreme judicial authority, the ability to lead the army, and the duty to protect the poor and the Church.  And like a great and holy knight, Charlemagne protected the poor, the weak, and the needy of his vast empire.

Charlemagne’s impact on music cannot be forgotten.  As strong proponent of ecclesial music, chant flourished under his rule.

"Charlemagne's interest in church music and solicitude for its propagation and adequate performance throughout his empire, have never been equaled by any civil ruler either before or since his time. He not only caused liturgical music to flourish in his own time throughout his vast domain, but he laid the foundations for musical culture which are still potent today” (Otten, Joseph. "Charlemagne and Church Music." The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 3. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1908).

A knight is acutely aware of his vocation.  He is a cultured soldier in the army of God who understands and appreciates the cultural heritage of his forefathers.  In a becoming fashion, Charlemagne possessed a love for literature.  Among his most favorite books were the Holy Scriptures and the works of St. Augustine.  In response for his commitment to holy literature, Charlemagne founded a court library.  Despite the long and painstaking process of composing a text by hand, Charlemagne still distributed copies.  And in imitation of the practice of the monks, Charlemagne would often take his meals while a subject would read a book to him.

As the true knight will defend the poor, the weak, and the needy, and whereas the knight will fight at all times to promote truth and defend the honor of God, Charlemagne fought long to spread the Gospel throughout the world.  A knight will not flee from adversity but will press on to the win the prize.  Charlemagne was no different when he defeated the Lombards in Pavia.  And despite 30 years of continuous campaigns against the Saxons, Charlemagne persisted in battle.  The Saxons were told to convert to Christianity from Paganism or suffer death.  In 785 their leader, Wittekind, converted.

Yet despite the many victories, there were defeats.  In 777 AD, Charlemagne suffered a death against the Moors of Spain.  While in battle his great paladin, Roland, was slain.  The episode is recounted in the legendary Song of Roland, the oldest surviving major French work of literature:

But Rollant feels he's no more time to seek;
Looking to Spain, he lies on a sharp peak,
And with one hand upon his breast he beats:
"Mea Culpa!  God, by Thy Virtues clean
Me from my sins, the mortal and the mean, 
Which from the hour that I was born have been
Until this day, when life is ended here!"
Holds out his glove towards God, as he speaks
Angels descend from heaven on that scene.

After years of defending the rights of the papacy and seeking the conversion of pagans and heretics, Charlemagne was crowned as the first Holy Roman Emperor on Christmas Day of the year 800 AD.  Like the Benedictio Novi Militis of the Roman Pontifical for the liturgical dubbing of a knight, the coronation of a king is a sacramental.



Charlemagne’s final years of life were spent in attendance at daily Mass.  In the Year of our Lord 814, Charlemagne passed from this world to the next.

The First Holy Roman Emperor was buried in Aachen’s Cathedral, in which is still presently contained his mortal remains.  The Cathedral was originally built as Charlemagne’s palace chapel.  For nearly 600 years from 936 – 1531 AD, kings were anointed and crowned at the main altar of Aachen’s Cathedral.   Within the Cathedral is contained the four holy relics collected by Charlemagne: The cloak of our Lady, the swaddling clothes of the Infant Jesus, the loin clothes worn by Jesus Christ during His Crucifixion, and the cloth on which rested the head of St. John the Baptist after his martyrdom.  These relics are displayed only every seven years for the public.

At his death, Charlemagne left a vast empire; many had believed under Charlemagne the Western world would reunite for the first time since the fall of the Roman Empire.  However, upon his death, the Kingdom was divided amongst his sons.  After civil war and feuds, the vast empire of Charles the Great split into several feudal states.

With the death of Charlemagne, the knightly ideal did not die and neither did the support of the Church.  Bishop Richard Williamson identifies the coronation of Charlemagne as the start of a 1,000 year period of prosperity and growth for the Holy Church – up until the French Revolution.  Charlemagne, the Father of Europe, had fought paganism, defended the rights of the Sovereign Pontiff, upheld orthodox doctrine, and embodied chivalry.  May all men embody the virtue and chivalry of Charlemagne.

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Wednesday, November 5, 2014
Review: 2015 Angelus Press Calendar
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A few days ago I received the 2015 Angelus Press Calendar in the mail.  As I did back in 2012 and then again in 2013, I am pleased to review the Angelus Press calendar.  I have become used to the great quality in these calendars.  The 2015 calendar is no different – in fact, it’s the most beautiful calendar that they have made so far.

The calendar itself is beautifully typeset and features symbols to denote which dates are days of mandatory fasting, mandatory abstinence, traditional fasting, traditional abstinence, or combinations thereof. 

The subject of the 2015 calendar is the Traditional Latin Mass, using the texts from Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.  These texts were instrumental in helping me toward Traditional Catholicism.  The beautiful art and the passages in the 2015 calendar are well worth study and meditation.

I highly recommend this calendar and hope that you will purchase one from Angelus Press.

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Tuesday, November 4, 2014
Does SSPX Mass Attendance Fulfill the Sunday Obligation?
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Yes, a Catholic may fulfill their Sunday obligation by assisting at Masses said by the priests of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX).

The Ecclesia Dei Commission on 18th January 2003, stated that it is possible to satisfy the precept of hearing Sunday Mass by assisting at a Mass celebrated by a priest of the Society of Saint Pius X.

Msgr. Camille Perl of Ecclesia Dei wrote in a letter to Una Voce America in 2003:
"...Points 1 and 3 in our letter of 27 September 2002 to this correspondent are accurately reported. His first question was "Can I fulfill my Sunday obligation by attending a Pius X Mass" and our response was: "1. In the strict sense you may fulfill your Sunday obligation by attending a Mass celebrated by a priest of the Society of St. Pius X." (Source: http://www.cfnews.org/sspx-obl.htm)

Image Copyright: Via John Crowley on Flickr.

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Monday, November 3, 2014
Day by Day for the Holy Souls in Purgatory: 365 Reflections
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I would like to recommend this book which is especially appropriate for All Souls Day:

"If we, by our prayers and sacrifices, freed a soul from purgatory, we would then have another intercessor for us in heaven." - Venerable Solanus Casey

Every day we have another opportunity to pray for the holy souls in purgatory - author, speaker, and purgatory expert Susan Tassone gives you a unique tool to do just that. Day by Day for the Holy Souls includes prayers, teachings about purgatory, real-life stories, Susan's own wisdom, meditations, quotes from the saints, and more. You can use this book however you like - as a daily devotional, as a year round novena, to follow the liturgical seasons.
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Sunday, November 2, 2014
Vote This Tuesday!
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The elections this November will be essential to furthering the pro-life message! We really need to make sure we vote for those candidates that agree with the Church's teachings on the five non-negotiables, which are always wrong (abortion, embryonic stem cell research, gay marriage, euthanasia, and cloning). The Church never supports a candidate, but it supports views on issues.
So, please above all vote for the candidates that are pro-life. Pro-life of course also means being anti-poverty and caring for the less fortunate in society but opposition to abortion should be our #1 concern. The Church teaches that it is a mortal sin to vote for a politician that supports abortion if there is a candidate running who is against abortion (read more)

According to the exit polls from the 2012 Presidential election, 51% of Catholics voted in favor of the pro-abortion, anti-Catholic Obama while 49% voted in favor of the pro-life candidate.   Even more discouraging is the continued trend in which states that contain large number of Catholics - even the majority of the state’s population - have consistently voted for anti-Catholic Democrats (and anti-Catholic Republicans at times).  Why is it that New England is a Democratic stronghold even though 36.6% of Connecticut’s population is Catholic?  Why is 37.1% of New York is made up of Catholics when the state always elects abortion supporters?

Catholics - the country's largest religious group with one-quarter of the population - have supported the winner of the popular vote in every presidential election since 1972.

To see how your politicians have voted, please see the National Right to Life legislative scorecard. Democrats for Life also has a list of some pro-life candidates. Let us stand up for the right of every little unborn child; let us further the Kingdom of God. I advise all people to vote against the pro-abortion candidates NARAL has endorsed for Congress. Check out Priests for Life for a lot of endorsement information.
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Mass Propers: Twenty First Sunday after Pentecost
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INTROIT
Dan 3:31, 29, 33 All that you have done to us, O Lord, you have done in just judgment, because we have disobeyed Your Commandments; but give glory to Your own name and deal with us in accord with Your bounteous mercy. Ps. 118:1. Blessed are they who are undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT - Forget Your anger, O Lord, and grant Your faithful pardon and peace, that they may be cleansed from their sins and serve You without fear. Through our Lord . . .

EPISTLE
Eph. 5:15-21
See therefore, brethren, how you walk circumspectly: not as unwise, But as wise: redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore, become not unwise: but understanding what is the will of God. And be not drunk with wine, wherein is luxury: but be ye filled with the Holy Spirit, Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual canticles, singing and making melody in your hearts to the Lord: Giving thanks always for all things, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, to God and the Father: Being subject one to another, in the fear of Christ.

GRADUAL
The eyes of all look hopefully to You, O Lord, and You give them food in due season. V. You open Your hand, and fill every living creature with blessin

Alleluia, alleluia! V. Ps. 107:2 My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready; I will sing and praise You, my glory. Alleluia!



GOSPEL
St. John 4:46-53

He came again therefore into Cana of Galilee, where he made the water wine. And there was a certain ruler, whose son was sick at Capharnaum. He having heard that Jesus was come from Judea into Galilee, sent to him and prayed him to come down and heal his son: for he was at the point of death. Jesus therefore said to him: "Unless you see signs and wonders, you believe not." The ruler saith to him: Lord, come down before that my son die. Jesus saith to him: "Go thy way. Thy son liveth." The man believed the word which Jesus said to him and went his way. And as he was going down, his servants met him: and they brought word, saying, that his son lived. He asked therefore of them the hour wherein he grew better. And they said to him: "Yesterday at the seventh hour, the fever left him." The father therefore knew that it was at the same hour that Jesus said to him: "Thy son liveth." And himself believed, and his whole house.

OFFERTORY
Ps. 136:1
By the streams of Babylon we sat and wept, when we remembered you, O Sion.

SECRET O Lord, let this sacred rite bring us healing from heaven and cleanse our hearts of all sinfulness. Through our Lord . . .

COMMUNION
Ps. 118:49-50
Remember Your promise to Your servant, O Lord, by which You have given me hope. This is my solace in my affliction.


POST COMMUNION - O Lord, make us ever obedient to Your Commandments, that we may be deserving of Your heavenly Gifts. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, 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, October 31, 2014
SSPX Response to Bishop Marcello Semeraro
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The Society of St. Pius X has issued a response to the unjust and illegal attempt to prevent Catholics from attending their Masses.


Bishop Bernard Fellay, superior of the Society of St. Pius X, celebrates an early morning Mass at the society's headquarters in Menzingen, Switzerland, May 11, 2012. Source: The Catholic World Report
Press Release of SSPX-Italy

ALBANO, ITALY – 10-31-2013


In a notification dated October 14 of this year, Bishop Marcello Semeraro, Ordinary of the Diocese of Albano Laziale (Italy), made particularly odious statements about the Society of St. Pius X, for the purpose of keeping the faithful away from Masses celebrated by our Society and from the religious instruction given to young people, declaring that the Society was not “an institution of the Catholic Church”.

Bishop Semeraro cannot be unaware of the fact that the Society of St. Pius X was erected with the approval of the Bishop of Fribourg (Switzerland) on November 1, 1970, and that this establishment was ratified by Rome with a decree issued by Cardinal Wright, Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy on February 18, 1971. [see the SSPX's founding documents]

The house itself of the Society in Albano, with its semi-public oratory for the administration of the sacraments, was canonically erected by the decree of Bishop Semeraro’s predecessor, Bishop Raffaele Macario on February 22, 1974 (Protocol n. 140/74).

Despite the problems with the ecclesiastical authorities that developed following the deviations in the Faith and the liturgy brought about by the Second Vatican Council, and notwithstanding the illegitimate attempts to suppress our Society because of its fidelity to the Tradition of the Church, the Holy See itself, through the Roman Ecclesia Dei Commission, affirmed that one can perform one’s Sunday duty “by attending a Mass celebrated by a priest of the Society of St. Pius X” (January 18, 2003) and, as everyone knows, it no longer considers the bishops of that same Society to be not in communion with the Catholic Church.

It is very odd that Bishop Semeraro should intervene in this way when he has made himself the champion of ecumenism in his diocese. In 2009 he granted the Church of San Francesco in Genzano, which was built with the labors and sacrifices of our ancestors for Catholic worship, to schismatics and heretics. On January 28 of this year he organized an ecumenical vigil in the cathedral to pray with persons who are certainly not “in communion with the Catholic Church”, such as an Evangelical Lutheran pastor and an Orthodox bishop.

In the month of November alone, three [ecumenical] meetings are scheduled in the diocese, and the bishop will preside at one of them, thus supporting religions that deny truths of the Faith that have been defined by the Church and spreading the false doctrine of indifferentism, which says that every religion is helpful for salvation. He does not seem to care that this openly contradicts the teaching of the perennial Magisterium of the Church, in particular of Pope Pius XI in his encyclical, Mortalium animos.

Moreover from March 26 to 28 of this year the house of the Somaschi Fathers in Albano hosted the First Forum of Christian Homosexuals, at which the practice of sodomy was defended in principle as an act of true love!

All this is possible in the diocese... but not attending the Masses or classes of those who hand down the Church’s Tradition in doctrine and the liturgy!

This blatant inconsistency is an obvious symptom of the terrible crisis that is affecting the whole Church and that was manifested again recently in the last Synod, in which, under the pretext of mercy, there was discussion of the possibility of changing the Sixth Commandment of God and of abandoning the indissolubility of Christian marriage!

The Society of St. Pius X, following the example of its founder, will continue to transmit in its entirety the deposit of the Catholic Faith and morals, openly taking sides against all the errors that try to distort it, without fear of threats or of unjust canonical sanctions, because neither Bishop Semeraro nor any other member of the ecclesiastical hierarchy will ever be able to change this deposit. As St. Peter said, “It is better to obey God rather than men.”

All who wish to receive the sacraments as the Church has always administered them, or to receive authentic catechetical instruction for their children, adult formation, spiritual direction and comfort for the sick will always be welcome in our chapels.

Society of St. Pius X, District of Italy
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Vigil of All Saints
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Today is the Eve of All Saints Day (Halloween), and tomorrow is the 1st Class Feast of All Saints, a Holy Day of Obligation for many countries. So, please remember to attend Holy Mass tomorrow. Failure to attend Mass without a good reason is a mortal sin.

All Saints Vigil is a traditional day of fast and abstinence.

Also, there are many indulgences available starting tomorrow, and some apply only to the souls in purgatory. Help the suffering souls! Gain indulgences for them. Please see the follow posts for important information concerning the approaching holy days, All Saints Day and All Souls Day.
Please see the follow posts for important information concerning the approaching holy days, All Saints Day and All Souls Day.
On this Vigil of All Saints, the Mass of the Preceding Sunday is said (as today is treated as a Feria); however, a Requiem or a Votive Mass may be said today.

Today is also the Feast of St. Wolfgang of Regensburg:

Wolfgang (d. 994) + Bishop and reformer. Born in Swabia, Germany, he studied at Reichenau under the Benedictines and at Wurzburg before serving as a teacher in the cathedral school of Trier. He soon entered the Benedictines at Einsiedeln (964) and was appointed head of the monastery school, receiving ordination in 971. He then set out with a group of monks to preach among the Magyars of Hungary, but the following year (972) was named bishop of Regensburg by Emperor Otto II (r. 973-983). As bishop, he distinguished himself brilliantly for his reforming zeal and his skills as a statesman. He brought the clergy of the diocese into his reforms, restored monasteries, promoted education, preached enthusiastically, and was renowned for his charity and aid to the poor, receiving the title Eleemosynarius Major (Grand Almoner). He also served as tutor to Emperor Henry II (r. 1014-1024) while he was still king. Wolfgang died at Puppingen near Linz, Austria. He was canonized in 1052 by Pope St. Leo IX (r. 1049-1054). Feast day: October 31.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Bishop Williamson Ordains a Brazilian Deacon
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Just a few days ago His Excellency Bishop Williamson ordained a deacon in Brazil.  Photo source: Militia Jesu Christi.

For those unfamiliar with His Excellency’s current dealings, you should check out his newly released website on the St. Marcel Initiative.  

Prayer for Vocations by Ven. Pope Pius XII

Lord Jesus, High Priest and universal Shepherd, Thou hast taught us to pray, saying: "Pray the Lord of the harvest to send forth laborers into His harvest" [Matt. 9: 38]. Therefore we beseech Thee graciously to hear our supplications and raise up many generous souls who, inspired by Thy example and supported by Thy grace, may conceive the ardent desire to enter the ranks of Thy sacred ministers in order to continue the office of Thy one true priesthood.

Although Thy priests live in the world as dispensers of the mysteries of God, yet their mission demands that they be not men of this world. Grant, then, that the insidious lies and vicious slanders directed against the priesthood by the malignant enemy and abetted by the world through its spirit of indifference and materialism may not dim the brilliance of the light with which they shine before men, nor lessen the profound and reverent esteem due to them. Grant that the continual promotion of religious instruction, true piety, purity of life and devotion to the highest ideals may prepare the groundwork for good vocations among youth. May the Christian family, as a nursery of pure and pious souls, become the unfailing source of good vocations, ever firmly convinced of the great honor that can redound to our Lord through some of its numerous offspring. Come to the aid of Thy Church, that always and in every place she may have at her disposal the means necessary for the reception, promotion, formation and mature development of all the good vocations that may arise. For the full realization of all these things, O Jesus, Who art most zealous for the welfare and salvation of all, may Thy graces continually descend from heaven to move many hearts by their irresistible force; first, the silent invitation; then generous cooperation; and finally perseverance in Thy holy service.

Art Thou not moved to compassion, O Lord, seeing the crowds like sheep without a shepherd, without anyone to break for them the bread of Thy word, or to lead them to drink at the fountains of Thy grace, so that they are continually in danger of becoming a prey to ravening wolves? Does it not grieve Thee to behold so many unplowed fields where thorns and thistles are allowed to grow in undisputed possession? Art Thou not saddened that many of Thy gardens, once so green and productive, are now on the verge of becoming fallow and barren through neglect?

O Mary, Mother most pure, through whose compassion we have received the holiest of priests; O glorious Patriarch St. Joseph, perfect model of cooperation with the Divine call; O holy priests, who in Heaven compose a choir about the Lamb of God: obtain for us many good vocations in order that the Lord's flock, through the support and government of vigilant shepherds, may attain to the enjoyment of the most delightful pastures of eternal happiness

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Saturday, October 25, 2014
Traditional Dominican Friars of Steffeshausen
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This is an order I have known about before it was founded.  Fr. Albert is someone who I look up to.  Please consider supporting this community:

 
Find out about a new traditional religious community, the Dominican Friars of Steffeshausen, Belgium, and see how you can help them... or even join the Third Order of St. Dominic.

A video has just been published about a new foundation of traditional Dominican friars in Belgium and the Third Order that they are offering to the faithful.

This new community of traditional Dominican friars was founded on November 15, 2013, in Steffeshausen, a little village in the southeast corner of Belgium. They were invited there by the villagers after the death of their parish priest, who had kept the traditional Mass and was persecuted by his bishop some 25 years ago. They offered the church and rectory built by this priest to these friars as a first home for their fledgling community. Bishop Alfonso de Galarreta, who assists those religious communities affiliated with the SSPX, accepted to help the foundation as its ecclesiastical superior.

The goal of the community is simply to continue the true spirit of St. Dominic as it has been embodied for eight centuries, an ideal summed up perfectly by St. Thomas Aquinas in a few words in his Summa Theologica which have become a sort of motto of the Order: "To contemplate and give to others what has been contemplated."

Thus a Dominican must be first and above all a true contemplative, and in order to achieve this end the Constitutions prescribe all of the monastic practices followed by contemplative orders: the Divine Office in common, silence, fasting, chapter of faults, etc. Of course, this includes the three vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience common to all religious.

On top of this, however, Dominicans add the obligation of study, in order to be able to attain the secondary end of the Order: the preaching of the Word of God, to “give to others what has been contemplated.”

Since November the friars at Steffeshausen have been living this life of contemplation and preaching. There are at present four priests and one lay brother, three of whom are French and two Canadian. Some young men have already presented themselves to ask to join them and they plan to begin to receive postulants in the fall of 2015.

The Dominicans belong to an Order of mendicant preachers. It is by alms that they are able to lead their life of prayer and study that will permit them to prepare their apostolate.

You can help the Dominicans by making a donation:
  • send a personal check (in US dollars) to their address in Belgium made out to: Fr. Albert
  • via PayPal to their account: luxmundi@mail.com
  • or make a donation online via the Foreign Missions; mention: Steffeshausen Dominicans
  • donate via check to Foreign Missions Trust (PO Box 114, Farley, MO 64028); mention: Steffeshausen Dominicans
Correspondence can be sent to:

Dominicans Fathers
Steffeshausen 5
4790 Burg Reuland
Belgium

or

Dominican Third Order
PO Box 175
St. Mary's, KS 66536
USA

Source: E-Pistola of 10/24/14
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Friday, October 24, 2014
Ss. Chrysanthus and Daria
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1955 Calendar (Simple): October 25

Chrysanthus was the only son of an Egyptian patrician, named Polemius or Poleon, who lived during the reign of Numerian. His father moved from Alexandria to Rome. Chrysanthus was educated in the finest manner of the era. Disenchanted with the excess in the Roman world, he began reading the Acts of the Apostles.

He was then baptized and educated in Christianity by a priest named Carpophorus. His father was unhappy with Chrysanthus's conversion and attempted to inculcate secular ways into his son by tempting him with prostitutes, but Chrysanthus retained his virginity.

He objected when his father arranged a marriage to Daria, a Roman Vestal Virgin. Chrysanthus converted his new bride and convinced her to live with him in a chaste state. Vestal Virgins took a vow of chastity during their thirty-year term of service.

They went on to convert a number of Romans. When this was made known to Claudius, the tribune, Chrysanthus was arrested and tortured. Chrysanthus's faith and fortitude under torture were so impressive to Claudius that he and his wife, Hilaria, two sons named Maurus and Jason, and seventy of his soldiers became Christians.

For this the emperor had Claudius drowned, his sons beheaded and his wife went to the gallows. The legend states that Daria was sent to live as a prostitute, but her chastity was defended by a lioness. She was brought before Numerian and ordered to be executed.

There are many variations to this legend. Some claim that she was subjected to execution by stoning, others say she was beheaded and yet others claim she was buried alive in a deep pit beside her husband. They were entombed in a sand pit near the Via Salaria Nova, the catacombs in Rome.

The Acts of Chrysanthus and Daria state that on the anniversary of their deaths, a large number of Christians had gathered at their underground crypt to pay their respects when Roman persecutors surprised them, filled the crypt with stones and buried them all alive, including Diodorus, a priest, and Marianus, a deacon.

Prayer:

May the prayers of Your blessed martyrs Chrysanthus and Daria be with us, O Lord, so that we who devoutly honor them may always experience their kind assistance. Through our Lord . . .


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Feast of St. Raphael the Archangel
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The Church, having recently celebrated the Feast of St. Michael the Archangel, now celebrates the Feast of St. Raphael.

Again to summarize: Angels are pure, created spirits. The name angel means servant or messenger of God. They are celestial or heavenly beings, on a higher order than human beings. An angel has no body and does not depend on matter for his existence or activity. They are distinct from saints, which men can become. Angels have intellect and will, and are immortal. They are a vast mulitude, but each is an individual person. Archangels are one of the nine choirs of angels listed in the Bible. In ascending order, the choirs or classes are 1) Angels, 2) Archangels, 3) Principalities, 4) Powers, 5) Virtues, 6) Dominations, 7) Thrones, 8) Cherubim and 9) Seraphim.

The Archangels who we know by name (Raphael, Michael, and Gabriel) are called Archangels because of their high rank (arching above the other angels).  They are not Archangels as in terms of the second lowest tier.  Rather, these three are three of the seven seraphim angels, the highest ranking, who continuously stand before the presense of God in Heaven.



Source: Tradition Latin Mass Propers in English

Archangel Raphael is known through the Book of Tobias in the Old Testament. He appeared in human form as a gracious young man called Azarias, to protect the younger Tobias on his journey from Ninive to a city of the Medes. In the process he found a wife for Tobias, and later delivered her from an evil spirit; he also healed the elder Tobias of blindness. Raphael is "one of the seven who stand before the Lord" (Tob. 12:15). Today's Prayer speaks of him as a companion in journeys. The Reading shows him as presenting our prayers to God. The Gospel is a reminder of Raphael's healing powers, for his name means "God has healed."

INTROIT Ps. 102:20

Bless the Lord all you His angels, you mighty in strength who do His bidding, obeying the voice of His commands. Ps. 102:1. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and let all my being bless His holy Name.
V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT

O God, who sent the blessed Archangel Raphael to accompany Your servant Tobias on his journey, grant that we, Your servants, may also be guarded by him always and strengthened by his assistance. Through our Lord.

LESSON Tob. 12:7-15

In those days, the angel Raphael said to Tobias: "For it is good to hide the secret of a king: to reveal and confess the works of God. Prayer is good with fasting and alms more than to lay up treasures of gold. For alms delivereth from death, and the same is that which purgeth away sins, and maketh to find mercy and life everlasting. But they that commit sin and iniquity, are enemies to their own soul. I discover then the truth unto you, and I will not hide the secret from you." When thou didst pray with tears, and didst bury the dead, and didst leave thy dinner, and hide the dead by day in thy house, and bury them by night, I offered thy prayer to the Lord. And because thou wast acceptable to God, it was necessary that temptation should prove thee. And now the Lord hath sent me to heal thee, and to deliver Sara thy son's wife from the devil. For I am the angel Raphael, one of the seven, who stand before the Lord."

GRADUAL Tob. 8:3; PS. 146:5

Raphael, the angel of the Lord, took the devil and bound him.
V. Great is our Lord, and great His power!

Alleluia, alleluia! V. Ps. 137:1-2

I will sing Your praise in the sight of the angels; I will worship in Your holy temple and give glory to Your Name, O Lord. Alleluia!

GOSPEL John 5:1-4

After these things was a festival day of the Jews: and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now there is at Jerusalem a pond, called Probatica, which in Hebrew is named Bethsaida, having five porches. In these lay a great multitude of sick, of blind, of lame, of withered: waiting for the moving of the water. And an angel of the Lord descended at certain times into the pond and the water was moved. And he that went down first into the pond after the motion of the water was made whole of whatsoever infirmity he lay under.

OFFERTORY ANTIPHON Apoc. 8:3, 4

An Angel stood before the altar of the temple, having in his hand a golden censer; and there was given to him much incense, and the smoke of the incense went up before God.

SECRET

O Lord, graciously accept the sacrifice of praise we offer You. May it bring us closer to our salvation through the angel's prayers of intercession. Through Christ, our Lord . . .

COMMUNION ANTIPHON Dan. 3:58

All you Angels of the Lord, bless the Lord; sing a hymn of praise and exalt Him above all forever.
POSTCOMMUNION

O Lord God, send the holy Archangel Raphael to help us, so that he, who we believe stands always before Your Throne, may present our humble prayers for Your blessing. Through our Lord . . .
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Thursday, October 23, 2014
6 Ways to Stay in touch with "A Catholic Life" Blog
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1. One of my favorite things is receiving emails from my readers.  If you want to write me to say hello or if you are searching for an answer to anything Catholic-related, please write me.  I love receiving emails and will usually respond within 6 hours of receiving your message.  And you can be sure that if I don't know the answer to your question, I will find someone who can provide the answer.  Please send your comments to acatholiclife [at] gmail.com.

2. Secondly, I live in the Chicago area and am open to meet anyone in the area before/after Mass on Sundays.  If you are in town and looking for a traditional Mass in the area, I can direct you to several places and show you around the town if needed.  If you are in the area visiting, send me an email and we can see if our schedules match up.

3. Also, please consider subscribing to the blog via Feedburner. Simply insert your email address below and you will receive an email in the mornings on which a new post has been published. You are free to unsubscribe at any time.

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4. I also have a special newsletter that I send out to my readers to update you on events in my life, on events in the Church, and other related events.  If you would like to be on my special contact list, please let me know and I will add you to my email list.

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