Thursday, May 9, 2013
Ascension of our Lord into Heaven

INTROIT Acts 1:11
< Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up to heaven? Alleluia! He shall come in the same way as you have seen him going up to heaven, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!
Ascension Thursday in the liturgical year marks the 40th day after Easter Sunday and the day we celebrate Our Lord's Glorious Ascension into Heaven. The Ascension has three principal parts: the departure of Jesus from earth, His going up into heaven, and taking His place at the right hand of the Father.

As Our Lord ascended, He rose to sit forever at the right-hand of the Father, since He abides eternally in the Father’s bliss, which is termed as “the right hand.” And, while many of us are familiar with the image of Christ sitting at the right hand of the Father, the Scriptures do in one instance mention Christ standing – not sitting – at the right hand of the Father. This instance is during the stoning of Stephen. Reflecting upon this St. Gregory says in a Homily on the Ascension (Hom. xxix in Evang.), "it is the judge's place to sit, while to stand is the place of the combatant or helper. Consequently, Stephen in his toil of combat saw Him standing whom He had as his helper. But Mark describes Him as seated after the Ascension, because after the glory of His Ascension He will at the end be seen as judge."

Regarding the place from which Christ ascended, Sulpicius, bishop of Jerusalem, says, and the 'Gloss' also says, that when a church was built [on the Mount of Olives] later on, the spot where Christ had stood could never be covered with pavement; and more than that, the marble slabs placed there burst upwards into the faces of those who were laying them. He also says that footmarks in the dust there prove that the Lord had stood on that spot: the footprints are discernible and the ground still retains the depressions his feet had left.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013
Morning Offering: For All who have Left the Church

The German king Henry IV, who had been excommunicated by Pope Gregory VII in 1076, stands by the gate of the castle of Canossa, in Northern Italy, to beg pardon to the pope.

Daily offering 

(To be recited every morning when you wake up)

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer Thee all my prayers, works, joys and sufferings of this day, for all the intentions of Thy Sacred Heart in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, and in reparation for my sins. I offer them particularly for the return to the Church of all those that left her.
Monday, May 6, 2013
Minor Rogation Days: May 6 - 8, 2013

The Church in Cornwall: A Rogation Day Process (1906)

While frequently forgotten after Vatican II, the observation of Rogation Days is still encouraged. This year the Minor Rogation, the days leading up to Ascension Thursday, are May 6-8  inclusive. Today is the first day of the Minor Rogation, a day which should be a day of fasting.

These were traditionally days of penance, fasting, and praying litanies. If you are in good health, please remember to observe these days. Again, while not required until penalty of sin by the Holy Church, these days can still be observed. I am greatly encouraging them. For more information on Rogation days, see my post: Major Rogation Day.

I greatly encourage people to observe these days and spend time praying the Litany of Saints not only for a bountiful harvest but also for mercy and repentance.

Commemoration of the MASS OF ROGATION (1962 Missal)

Mercifully grant us our requests, O Lord, that the consolation we receive in our grievous troubles may increase our love for You.
Sunday, May 5, 2013
Feast of Pope St. Pius V

Michael Ghislieri, a Dominican friar from his fifteenth year, a teacher of religion at twenty, as a simple religious, as inquisitor, bishop, and cardinal, was famous both for the spotless purity of his own life and for his intrepid defense of the Church's faith and discipline. Surrounded in his time by great men and great Saints, in apostolic virtue he was surpassed by none.
As Pope, his first concern was to reform the Roman court and the capital city by the strict example of his own household and the punishment of offenders. He next endeavored to obtain from the Catholic powers recognition of the decrees of the Council of Trent, two of which he strictly enforced: the obligatory residence of bishops in their sees, and the establishment of diocesan seminaries. He revised the Missal and Breviary, and reformed ecclesiastical music.

He was not less active in protecting the Church outside Italy. We see him at the same time supporting the Catholic King of France against the Huguenot rebels, and encouraging Mary, Queen of Scots in the bitterness of her captivity. It is he who excommunicated her rival, the usurper Elizabeth, when the best blood of England flowed upon the scaffold and the measure of her crimes was full. The intrepidity of this Vicar of Christ found enemies. The holy Pope was accustomed to kiss the feet of the crucifix on leaving or entering his room. One day the feet moved away from his lips. Sorrow filled his heart, and he made acts of contrition, fearing that he must have committed some secret offense, yet he still could not kiss the feet. It was afterwards discovered that they had been poisoned by an enemy.

It was in the Lepanto victory that the Saint's power was most plainly manifest. There, in October of 1571, by the holy league which he had formed but still more by the prayers of the aging Pontiff to the great Mother of God, the defeat of the advancing Ottoman forces was obtained and Christendom was saved from the Turk. Six months later Saint Pius V died, having reigned only six years.
He is well known upon Traditional Catholics for codifying the Roman Missal and decreeing the bull "Quo Primum," which codified for all times and all peoples the Tridentine Mass

Reflection. Thy cross, O Lord, is the source of all blessings, the cause of all graces; by it the faithful find strength in weakness, glory in humiliation, life in death. (Saint Leo)

Source: Little Pictorial Lives of the Saints, a compilation based on Butler's Lives of the Saints and other sources by John Gilmary Shea (Benziger Brothers: New York, 1894); Vie des Saints pour tous les jours de l'année, by Abbé L. Jaud (Mame: Tours, 1950).
Prayer (1962 Collect): 

O God, You chose blessed Pius as Pope to overcome the enemies of the Church and to restore the beauty of sacred liturgy. May his prayers protect us and help us to persevere in serving You, so that we may avoid the snares laid by our enemies and enjoy everlasting peace. Through Our Lord . . .
Saturday, May 4, 2013
The Errors of Reincarnation: Reincarnation versus a Glorious Bodily Resurrection

As we celebrate our Lord’s Resurrection from the dead, we choose today to turn our attention to understanding the important difference between the Catholic belief in a resurrected body and the false principle of re-incarnation.

According to re-incarnation, all peoples receive a new body after death; thus, the body that a person has now is not the body that he will have in the future. Believers in reincarnation directly contradict the Creed which professes a resurrection of the same body that a person currently possesses. Our Lord’s example shows forth to us a model since we are to follow Him in His Passion, Death, and Resurrection (of the same body!) since He Himself has foretold it (cf. John 13:36).

Christ did not inherit a new body. Christ’s body in Heaven still bears the same wounds from the Cross. It is for that reason that St. Thomas was told by Christ to put his hand into the Sacred Side of our Lord so that Thomas would believe in the Resurrection (cf. John 20:24-29). Christ rose from the dead in the same Body!

Even the modern Catechism of the Church is clear when it plainly teaches “There is no "reincarnation" after death” (CCC 1013). This teaching was similarly expressed with great clarify in the Catechism of the Council of Trent: “Man is, therefore, to rise again in the same body with which he served God, or was a slave to the devil; that in the same body he may experience rewards and a crown of victory, or endure the severest punishments and torments.”

But for reasons aside from our Creed, reincarnation is unacceptable for purely philosophic reasons.
As stated in the Catholic Encyclopedia: “Substance, the first of Aristotle's categories, signifies being as existing in and by itself, and serving as a subject or basis for accidents and accidental changes.”
Succinctly put, the substance of something is what that thing properly is.

Let’s take a chair for instance. There are leather chairs, wooden chairs, three-legged chairs, four-legged chairs, recliners, et cetera. What makes all of these a chair? A chair is a substance and all of these manifestations share in the quality of “chair-ness”. In this sense, we see that something is not defined by its accidents (i.e. “any contingent, or nonessential attribute” – Catholic Encyclopedia). Even if I took a dining chair and broke its legs, painted it, and threw it outside in the dumpster, it would still be a chair (albeit a poor quality one!).

A human being is a union of body and soul. The substance of a person is not merely his soul which can travel from body to body and occupy them at whim. A human person’s substance is a union of body and soul. You may never talk about a particular person without referring to the wholeness of that person. St. Thomas Aquinas addresses this same point in Question 75, Article 4 of his Summa:
I answer that, The assertion "the soul is man," can be taken in two senses. 
First, that man is a soul; though this particular man, Socrates, for instance, is not a soul, but composed of soul and body. I say this, forasmuch as some held that the form alone belongs to the species; while matter is part of the individual, and not the species. This cannot be true; for to the nature of the species belongs what the definition signifies; and in natural things the definition does not signify the form only, but the form and the matter. Hence in natural things the matter is part of the species; not, indeed, signate matter, which is the principle of individuality; but the common matter. For as it belongs to the notion of this particular man to be composed of this soul, of this flesh, and of these bones; so it belongs to the notion of man to be composed of soul, flesh, and bones; for whatever belongs in common to the substance of all the individuals contained under a given species, must belong to the substance of the species.   
It may also be understood in this sense, that this soul is this man; and this could be held if it were supposed that the operation of the sensitive soul were proper to it, apart from the body; because in that case all the operations which are attributed to man would belong to the soul only; and whatever performs the operations proper to a thing, is that thing; wherefore that which performs the operations of a man is man. But it has been shown above (Article 3) that sensation is not the operation of the soul only. Since, then, sensation is an operation of man, but not proper to him, it is clear that man is not a soul only, but something composed of soul and body. Plato, through supposing that sensation was proper to the soul, could maintain man to be a soul making use of the body.
Thus, on both purely religions and purely philosophical grounds, valid arguments are raised against reincarnation. 

For those of us faithful to the Traditions of the Church, it behooves us to learn the future of our own bodies.   We know that we shall rise again in a glorified body but what is a glorified body?  What does it look like?  How does it function?  We now turn to understanding this point.

The qualities of a glorified body are the subject of the following selection from the Catechism of the Council of Trent.  When reading this, please specifically recall how our Lord’s Body possesses all of these criteria:
The Qualities Of A Glorified Body 
In addition to this, the bodies of the risen Saints will be distinguished by certain transcendent endowments, which will ennoble them far beyond their former condition. Among these endowments four are specially mentioned by the Fathers, which they infer from the doctrine of St. Paul, and which are called gifts. 
The first endowment or gift is impassibility, which shall place them beyond the reach of suffering anything disagreeable or of being affected by pain or inconvenience of any sort. Neither the piercing severity of cold, nor the glowing intensity of heat, nor the impetuosity of waters can hurt them. It is sown says the Apostle, in corruption, it shall rise in incorruption This quality the Schoolmen call impassibility, not incorruption, in order to distinguish it as a property peculiar to a glorified body. The bodies of the damned, though incorruptible, will not be impassible; they will be capable of experiencing heat and cold and of suffering various afflictions. 
The next quality is brightness, by which the bodies of the Saints shall shine like the sun, according to the words of our Lord recorded in the Gospel of St. Matthew: The just shall shine as the sun, in the kingdom of their Father. To remove the possibility of doubt on the subject, He exemplifies this in His Transfiguration. This quality the Apostle sometimes calls glory, sometimes brightness: He will reform the body of our lowness, made like to the body of his glory; " and again, It is sown in dishonour, it shall rise in glory. Of this glory the Israelites beheld some image in the desert, when the face of Moses, after he had enjoyed the presence and conversation of God, shone with such lustre that they could not look on it. 
This brightness is a sort of radiance reflected on the body from the supreme happiness of the soul. It is a participation in that bliss which the soul enjoys just as the soul itself is rendered happy by a participation in the happiness of God. 
Unlike the gift of impassibility, this quality is not common to all in the same degree. All the bodies of the Saints will be equally impassible; but the brightness of all will not be the same, for, according to the Apostle, One is the glory of the sun, another the glory of the moon, and another the glory of the stars, for star differeth from star in glory: so also is the resurrection of the dead. 
To the preceding quality is united that which is called agility, by which the body will be freed from the heaviness that now presses it down, and will take on a capability of moving with the utmost ease and swiftness, wherever the soul pleases, as St. Augustine teaches in his book On the City of God, and St. Jerome On Isaias. Hence these words of the Apostle: It is sown in weakness, it shall rise in power. 
Another quality is that of subtility, which subjects the body to the dominion of the soul, so that the body shall be subject to the soul and ever ready to follow her desires. This quality we learn from these words of the Apostle: It is sown a natural body, it shall rise a spiritual body. 
These are the principal points which should be dwelt on in the exposition of this Article. 
Advantages of Deep Meditation on this Article 
But in order that the faithful may appreciate the fruit they derive from a knowledge of so many and such exalted mysteries, it is necessary, first of all, to point out that to God, who has hidden these things from the wise and made them known to little ones, we owe a debt of boundless gratitude. How many men, eminent for wisdom or endowed with singular learning, who ever remained blind to this most certain truth ! The fact, then, that He has made known to us these truths, although we could never have aspired to such knowledge, obliges us to pour forth our gratitude in unceasing praises of His supreme goodness and clemency. 
Another important advantage to be derived from reflection on this Article is that in it we shall find consolation both for ourselves and others when we mourn the death of those who were endeared to us by relationship or friendship. Such was the consolation which the Apostle himself gave the Thessalonians when writing to them concerning those who are asleep. 
Again, in all our afflictions and calamities the thought of a future resurrection must bring the greatest relief to the troubled heart, as we learn from the example of holy Job, who supported his afflicted and sorrowing soul by this one hope that the day would come when, in the resurrection, he would behold the Lord his God. 
The same thought must also prove a powerful incentive to the faithful to use every exertion to lead lives of rectitude and integrity, unsullied by the defilement of sin. For if they reflect that those boundless riches which will follow after the resurrection are now offered to them as rewards, they will be easily attracted to the pursuit of virtue and piety.
On the other hand, nothing will have greater effect in subduing the passions and withdrawing souls from sin, than frequently to remind the sinner of the miseries and torments with which the reprobate will be visited, who on the last day will come forth unto the resurrection of judgment.
First Saturday Devotion for May

First Saturdays Devotion

On Saturdays, Catholics traditionally have taken part in the "First Saturdays Devotion" which entails going to Mass and receiving Communion for the first Saturday of the month for 5 consecutive months in reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  This devotion is not to be confused with the First Friday's Devotion, which is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ.

On July 1, 1905, Pope Pius X approved and granted indulgences for the practice of the First Saturdays of twelve consecutive months in honor of the Immaculate Conception. The First Saturday Devotion did not originate as part of the apparitions of our Blessed Lady in Fatima, but the devotion did quickly spread further following our Lady's series of appearances to the three shepherd children in 1917.

Our Blessed Lady's words to Sr. Lucia at Fatima:
Look, my daughter, at my Heart encircled by these thorns with which men pierce it at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You, at least, strive to console me, and so I announce: I promise to assist at the hour of death with the grace necessary for salvation all those who, with the intention of making reparation to me, will, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, go to confession, receive Holy Communion, say five decades of the beads, and keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary.
The First Saturday Devotion consists of offering the First Saturday of the month for five consecutive months in reparation for the many and grievous sins committed in our world. A further explanation of our Lady's request is below:
  • You must go to the Sacrament of Confession.  Your reception of the Sacrament may be 8 days before the Saturday as long as you stay in a state of grace.
  • You must receive the Holy Eucharist and as always, it must be in the state of grace or risk the most grievous sin of sacrilege
  • You must pray 5 decades of the Holy Rosary of our Lady, including the Fatima Prayer.  
  • Finally, the last requirement consist of "keeping Mary company" for 15 minutes while meditating on all of the Mysteries of the Rosary with the intention of making reparation to her. This can be done by reading Scripture or other writings relevant to the Mysteries, meditating on pictures of the Mysteries, or simple meditation. Materials for meditation and education on each of the Rosary mysteries is available online.

Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary

While the laity is not bound to pray the Divine Office, they are still encouraged to pray the Divine Office (also known as the Liturgy of the Hours).  To pray the Divine Office, I would highly encourage you to pray the 1962 Breviary or even the 1955 version as opposed to the modern version which I find lacking in the spiritual depth present in the earlier editions.

Since you are not bound under ecclesial law to pray the Office, you can and should start by praying the English version of the Breviary.  You can find various breviaries available for sale that will fulfill this purpose.  For centuries Catholics prayed most commonly not with personal prayers and devotion as such individual prayers originated from protestant individualism.  Instead, Catholics prayed the Liturgical texts of the Church (e.g. the Prayers of the Holy Mass, the Rosary, etc) daily and many were saved.  In our world we see the majority of mankind entrenched in sin and debauchery.  Let us pray for a return to our praying the Liturgical prayers of the Holy Church.  Pray the Daily Rosary as Mary has asked of us!

However, please also consider, in addition or instead of the standard Divine Office, the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary for your daily prayers!
The Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary is a shorter form of the Divine Office in honour of the Blessed Virgin Mary. It has long been the Church’s daily liturgical prayer to Our Lady, and these hours of praise have been used by Priests, religious and the laity throughout the centuries. Lay people used to flock to the great Cathedrals to publicly recite The Little Office during the Middle Ages, and during the great persecution, when the practice of the Catholic Faith was illegal in Great Britain, Bishop Challoner commended The Little Office to his flock.

Through its psalms, antiphons, readings, responsorials, and prayers the Little Office stresses the role Our Lady played in salvation history, and how through her fiat the divine Word took flesh in her womb and achieved salvation for us all; and how Our Lord granted her the first fruits of the general resurrection in her holy and glorious assumption.

All Catholics are called to a consistent prayer life. For those who do not feel called to recite the Divine Office, but still wish to participate in the liturgical prayer of the Church, or for those who have a particular devotion to the holy Mother of God, there is no finer form of prayer than the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

    Friday, May 3, 2013
    May's First Friday Devotion

    Today is the First Friday of January. Because today is the first Friday of the Month, many Catholic parishes will have special Masses today for the First Friday Devotion.

    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. Amen.
    Thursday, May 2, 2013
    Blessing of the Chapel of Our Lady of Good Counsel in Dayton, Ohio

    On April 26, Fr. Arnaud Rostand (District Superior of the Society of St. Pius X) came to bless the new chapel of Our Lady of Good Counsel in Dayton, Ohio. A Solemn Mass was said by Fr. Rostand, and he was assisted by the pastor, Fr. Adam Purdy (deacon), and Fr. Michael McMahon (subdeacon) from La Salette Boys Academy.

    For those unfamiliar with the consecration of a Church in the traditional site, please see the first part in my series of posts on the Consecration of a Church.  This is a blessing - not a consecration.

    Image Sources: SSPX Website
    Wednesday, May 1, 2013
    Help the Wardour Chapel

    In 1770 the Lord Arundell, following the sale of the family house at Panton Street in London and of Ashcombe Estate in Wiltshire, started to build New Wardour Castle to replace the old castle which had suffered such severe damage in the Civil Wars that the family had not been able to live in it, since. The Chapel was incorporated into the Mansion of which it forms the West wing and, therefore, from the outside, there is no indication of its existence. The reason for this is that, at this time, over 50 years before the Catholic Emancipation Act, Catholics were still subject to penal laws which forbade the construction of a Catholic church as a separate building.

    It was the first new Chapel built since the Reformation, open for public worship, that met these restrictions. Wardour Chapel is beautifully decorated and was opened by Bishop Walmesley, the Vicar Apostolic of the Western District, on November 1st, 1776, with ecclesiastical ceremonial not seen by Catholics in England since the Reformation.The Chapel is semi-circular at both ends and measures 95 feet long, 40 feet wide and 40 feet high; it can seat a congregation of over 300.

    Mass is celebrated in the chapel under both forms – the Novus Ordo for the parish on Sundays, and monthly in the Usus Antiquior. The Sanctuary remains as originally ordered, so all Masses are celebrated ‘ad orientem’.  The above images in this post reflect Mass said using the 1962 Missal.  These photographs show an Old Rite Mass celebrated for the Order of Malta, which holds an annual Day of Recollection at Wardour.  On this occasion, the altar cards were away for repair. 

    The Wardour Chapel is in need of financial help.  I quote from a recent document issued by the Friends of Wardour Chapel:

    The chapel has been owned by a trust (Charity Registration Number 224234) since 1898 and is entirely dependent on donations as no endowment was made when the trust was established.

    Over recent years, financial constraints have prevented the trustees from undertaking any significant maintenance tasks.  However, some things cannot be put off any longer, and the trustees have therefore decided to establish The Friends of Wardour Chapel with the simple aim of generating an annual income which will help to achieve the task of keeping this great chapel open for worship.

    The annual running costs of the chapel, before maintenance, are in the region of £15,000 and it is becoming increasingly clear that these costs are beyond the resources of the local congregation.  The Friends program seeks to raise funds towards these costs, for identified building and repair projects, and to build a sinking fund for future works.

    Currently the chapel is open to the public twice a week and is in regular use as an important part of the parish of Tisbury and Wardour.   Services are celebrated every Sunday (11am) and Tuesday (9.15am).  In addition, there is a thriving state primary school at Wardour, and the pupils attend the chapel on Tuesdays during term time.  It is of great benefit to the students of the school to be able to experience this magnificent building and its treasures as a regular part of their education, and it is therefore of on-going significance to the spiritual life of the local community.

    In addition to the fabric of the building, the Wardour Chapel Trust is responsible for the very fine contents of the chapel and the sacristy: vestments, silver and several large and notable continental paintings.  All this is in increasing need of conservation work.  The trustees believe that these items should remain at the chapel, to be used as intended by those who made and gave them, rather than be added to a museum collection. However, ongoing conservation and repairs are essential.

    The Friends of Wardour Chapel is being established to provide the opportunity to help in a material way to ensure that this Grade I listed architectural gem remains open and active for future generations.  The trustees believe that this should be of wider concern than the local community, and are therefore asking for benefactors to consider becoming Friends: membership costs £8 per month or, for those who prefer, £95 per year, payable by standing order.

    Friends of Wardour Chapel, will be invited to the annual Friends’ Open Day on a Saturday near to 1st November – the Chapel’s patronal feast of All Saints – as well as to other events which we hope to arrange at other times of the year.  The Open Day will begin with Holy Mass for those who wish to attend, offered for the intentions of the Friends past and present.  Some of the important ecclesiastical silver and the extraordinary collection of vestments, with their outstanding late medieval embroidered orphreys, will be on display.  This collection of vestments is one of the most significant in the country.  The Open Day will also provide the opportunity to listen to the wonderful organ, built for the chapel in 1791 by Samuel Green.
    Please visit the website for the Wardour Chapel and consider becoming a Friend or making a one-time donation.  I recently altered the Chapel that their form is not set up for Americans.  I have been told that a form should be available in the coming days especially designed for those with American addresses.  For more information, please visit Wardour Chapel
    Feast of St. Joseph the Worker

    Christ the Lord allowed Himself to be considered the son of a carpenter: come, let us adore Him, Alleluia -- Invitiatory Antiphon for Saint Joseph the Worker

    The Feast of St. Joseph the Worker was instituted by Pope Pius XII in 1955. On this date we also again recall Jesus' two natures - He was both Human and Divine. He was one person, a divine person, but He had two natures.

    Today we recall St. Joseph the Worker and remember that St. Joseph trained Jesus as a carpenter. We too must become holy and remember to offer up our prayers, works, joys and sufferings each day in a Morning Offering Prayer.

    What we know of St. Joseph comes from the Gospel accounts of Matthew and Luke. And what the scriptures tell us is that St. Joseph was a silent servant of God. St. Joseph owned little possessions but he was a descendant of David and full of the grace of God. There is not one recorded sentence spoken by St. Joseph, but the Gospels are clear that he acted kindly towards Mary and Jesus. He cared for them when Herod sought to kill Our Lord, and after the threat passed, he quietly passed away. For that reason, he is frequently recognized as the patron of a peaceful death. In the words of Pope Leo XIII: "Workman and all those laboring in conditions of poverty will have reasons to rejoice rather than grieve, since they have in common with the Holy Family daily preoccupations and cares."

    According to tradition, St. Joseph, the foster father of Jesus, watches over and guards the Church. Numerous saints also had devotions to St. Joseph including Saint Bernard, Saint Thomas Aquinas, Saint Gertrude, Saint Bridget of Sweden, Saint Alphonsus and Saint Teresa of Avila.

    Why have a devotion to St. Joseph?

    “To the other Saints it appears that the Lord may have granted power to succor us on particular occassions; but to this Saint, as experience proves, He has granted power to help us on all occassions. Our Lord would teach us that, as he was pleased to be subject to Joseph upon the earth, so He is now pleased to grant whatever this Saint asks for in heaven. Others whom I have recommended to have recourse to Joseph, have known this from experience. I never knew any one who was particularly devout to him, that did not continually advance more and more in virtue. For the love of God, let him who believes not this make his own trial. And I do not know how any one can think of the Queen of Angels, at the time when she labored so much in the infancy and childhood of Jesus, and not return thanks to Joseph for the assistance which he rendered both to the Mother and to the Son" (St. Teresa of Avila)

    Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal

    Prayer to Saint Joseph

    To thee, O Blessed Joseph, we have recourse in our affliction, and having implored the help of thy most holy Spouse, we seek with confidence thy patronage also. By that affection wherewith thou wast united to the Immaculate Virgin, Mother of God; by the fatherly love with which thou didst embrace the Child Jesus, we humbly beseech thee to look down with gracious eye upon that inheritance which Jesus Christ purchased for us by His Blood, and to help us in our need by thy powerful intercession.

    Defend, O thou most watchful guardian of the Holy Family, the chosen offspring of Jesus Christ. Keep from us, O most loving father, all blight of error and corruption. Aid us from on high, O thou our most valiant defender, in this conflict with the powers of darkness. And even as of old thou didst rescue the Child Jesus from the peril of His life, so now defend God's Holy Church from the snares of the enemy and from all adversity. Shield us ever under thy patronage, so that imitating thy example and strengtheded by thy help, we may live a holy life, die a happy death, and attain to everlasting bliss in heaven. Amen.
    Monday, April 29, 2013
    Institute of Christ the King Monthly Novena

    A monthly novena of prayer is offered at the Shrine of Christ the King to the Christ Child from the 17th - 25th each month, giving you the opportunity to present your prayer petitions to our little Infant King! For your donation, a flower will be placed before the Infant King or a candle burned in His presence, as visible signs of your prayer intention throughout the next monthly novena.

    Intentions received before the 15th are remembered in the current month's novena.

    Sunday, April 28, 2013
    Traditional Mass Propers: 4th Sunday after Easter


    INTROIT Ps. 97:1, 2

    Sing to the Lord a new canticle, alleluia! For the Lord has done wondrous deeds, alleluia! He has revealed His justice in the sight of the nations, alleluia, alleluia! Ps. 97:1. His right hand has won him victory, and his holy arm has brought salvation. V. Glory be . . .

    O God, in whom all the faithful are united in one mind, let Your people everywhere love Your commandments and yearn for Your promises, so that, even amid the changes of this world, their hearts may always be fixed upon the true happiness of heaven. Through Our Lord . . .

    James 1:17-21

    Beloved: Every best gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of Lights, with whom there is no change nor shadow of alteration. For of his own will hath he begotten us by the word of truth, that we might be some beginning of his creature. You know, my dearest brethren. And let every man be swift to hear, but slow to speak and slow to anger. For the anger of man worketh not the justice of God. Wherefore, casting away all uncleanness and abundance of naughtiness, with meekness receive the ingrafted word, which is able to save your souls.

    Alleluia, alleluia!  Ps. 117:16
    The right hand of the Lord has exercised power, the right hand of the Lord has lifted me up. Alleluia!
    Rom. 6:9 Christ, having risen from the dead, dies now no more; death shall no longer have dominion over Him. Alleluia!

    John 16:5-14

    At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: "I go to him that sent me, and none of you asketh me: 'Whither goest thou?' But because I have spoken these things to you, sorrow hath filled your heart. But I tell you the truth: it is expedient to you that I go. For if I go not, the Paraclete will not come to you: but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he is come, he will convince the world of sin and of justice and of judgment. Of sin: because they believed not in me. And of justice: because I go to the Father: and you shall see me no longer. And of judgment: because the prince of this world is already judged. "I have yet many things to say to you: but you cannot bear them now. But when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will teach you all truth. For he shall not speak of himself: but what things soever he shall hear, he shall speak. And the things that are to come, he shall shew you. He shall glorify me: because he shall receive of mine and shall shew it to you."

    Ps. 65:1-2, 16
    Shout joyfully to God, all the earth; sing a psalm to the glory of His name. Come and hear, all you who fear God, the great things the Lord has done for me, alleluia!

    O God, who allows us to share in Your own divine nature by partaking of this sacrifice, grant that our conduct may be guided by Your revealed truth. Through Our Lord . . .

    John 16:8
    When the Paraclete, the Spirit of truth, has come, he will convict the world of sin, and of justice, and of judgment, alleluia, alleluia!

    Help us, O Lord our God, that we may be cleansed from sin and shielded from all dangers by these Gifts which we receive with faith. Through Our Lord . . .

    Saturday, April 27, 2013
    Catholic Liturgical Year Program through

    Christus Resurrexit!

    Please consider, as part of you and your children's religious education, adding the Catholic Liturgical Year Program to your schedule.  This online program is meant to provide you with dozens of lessons for Catholic Feasts and Fasts throughout the year.  Best of all, if you purchase it now for $59.99, you will lock in at that price and any future lessons added to this program will be uploaded automatically and freely into your account.

    Not sure if it is right for you?  Please check out our lesson on the 4th Sunday after Easter for only a few dollars.  If you like what you read, please sign up for the Catholic Liturgical Year Course.  If it's not for you, then feel no pressure to sign up!

    I would highly recommend these lessons. Even the most informed, traditional Catholic will walk away learning new and forgotten pieces of our Catholic heritage.
    Cornerstone for upcoming SSPX Virginia Seminary Blessed

    The process for building the new seminary in Virginia for the Society of St. Pius X is well under way.  As summarized by the Society's website, "With the Blue Ridge Mountains as the backdrop and a blue sky overhead, Bishop Bernard Fellay presided over the various ceremonies: the blessing of the cornerstone and cloister bells, then a Pontifical Mass, followed by a conference concerning the new project and current affairs in the SSPX."

    In late 2011, the Society had broken ground for an additional seminary in Virginia.  Your support for this project is also much appreciated and needed.

    Photos are courtesy of the Society's website.

    Friday, April 26, 2013
    Pray for the Soul of the Founder of Neumann Press

    Dennis L. McCoy, age 72 of Long Prairie, formerly of Sauk Centre, died Monday, April 22, 2013 surrounded by his family at the Fairview University Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

    A Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 27 at Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church in Sauk Centre with Rev. John Paul Erickson officiating. Interment will be in the parish cemetery.
    Visitation will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Patton-Schad Funeral Home in Sauk Centre. A Rosary will be prayed at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. with parish prayers held at 6 p.m. Friday evening at the funeral home.
    Dennis Lee McCoy was born September 3, 1940 in Mitchell, South Dakota to Ronald and Marie (Sullivan) McCoy. He graduated from Woonsocket High School in 1958 and went on to Mankato State the following year. In 1959, he started working at the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, the daily newspaper in Sioux Falls, where he met his future bride, Dorothy McDonald. The couple was united in marriage on June 17, 1961 in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
    In 1961, they moved to Minnesota and operated the Brooten Review. Along with his brothers, Dennis started the Dairyland Peach in 1967. Together, they ran the Dairyland Peach until the early 1980's. In 1981, he founded the Neumann Press, a classic Catholic book publishing company.
    He was a former member of Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church in Sauk Centre. His Faith was very important to him. Dennis founded the Central Minnesota Chapter of Una Voce, a group dedicated to the promotion and support of the traditional Latin Mass, in union with Rome. He enjoyed restoring classic cars, woodworking, and listening to his favorite music. He also loved ballroom dancing with his wife at the Lakeside Dance Club in Glenwood and spending time with his family.
    Survivors include his wife, Dorothy McCoy of Long Prairie; children, Colleen (Joseph) Cianflone of Sauk Centre, Michael McCoy of Long Prairie, Kathleen (Paul) Kerin of Sauk Centre, Timothy (Mary) McCoy of Long Prairie, and Steven McCoy of Long Prairie; ten grandchildren; brothers, Tom (Mary) McCoy of Longmont, Colorado, Jim (Marlene) McCoy of Little Falls, William "Joe" (Audrey) McCoy of Long Prairie; and Brian (Shirley) McCoy of Sauk Centre; brother-in-law, Marvin Vearrier of Sauk Centre; and sister-in-law, Regina McCoy of Browerville.
    Dennis was preceded in death by his parents; sister, Mary Ellen Vearrier; and brother, Kirk McCoy.
    Serving as casket bearers will be Dennis's grandsons, Sean Kerin, Brendan Kerin, John Cianflone, and Patrick Kerin.
    In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred.

    Colleen Cianflone
    Editor, The Neumann Press Express

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