Friday, May 31, 2013
Our Lady Mediatrix of All Graces (Mass in Some Places)
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According to Father Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, “Our Holy Mother the Church-approved during the pontificate of Pope Benedict XV the proper Mass and Office of Mary, Mediatrix of all Graces.” The Saint Andrew’s Daily Missal (1945) lists it as May 31.  The Angelus Press missal says, “May 31 was the usual date for this Mass until the institution of the Feast of Our Lady Queen; since 1956 the day will probably vary with the Diocese.”

Thus today is not only the Feast of the Queenship of Mary but is also the Feast of Our Lady Mediatrix of All Graces. While not yet a dogma of the Faith, Mary has "Mediatrix of All Graces" is widely held by the Church.

Concerning this feastday in the Dominican Rite:
Interestingly, this feast never made its way into the liturgical calendar of the Roman Rite.  It is included in the 1962 Roman Missal as an optional feast, for use in certain places and diocese.  As best as I can tell, it first appeared on the Dominican liturgical calendar in the 1940's, and it moved around a bit until it finally landed on May 8 in the 1961 calendar.  The 1949 Completotori Libellus has the feast on May 31.  The 1955 English translation of the Dominican Martyrology has the feast on May 31.  The 1959 St. Dominic Missal has it on June 7.  [In the Post Vatican II Dominican Calendar], it has been removed from the calendar of the Order, which now celebrates the Patronage of the Blessed Virgin Mary on May 8. Source: Brevarium SOP
Concerning the title of Mediatrix, Fr. Reginald Garrigou‑Lagrange, O.P. discusses the office of mediator:
"The office of mediator belongs fully only to Jesus, the Man‑God, Who alone could reconcile us with God by offering Him, on behalf of men, the infinite sacrifice of the Cross, which is perpetuated in Holy Mass. He alone, as Head of mankind, could merit for us in justice the grace of salvation and apply it to those who do not reject His saving action. It is as man that He is mediator, but as a Man in Whom humanity is united hypostatically to the Word and endowed with the fullness of grace, the grace of Headship, which overflows on men. As St. Paul puts it: 'For there is one God, and one mediator of God and men, the man Christ Jesus: Who gave Himself for a redemption for all, a testimony in due times' (I Tim. ii, 56). "

But, St. Thomas adds: 'there is no reason why there should not be, after Christ, other secondary mediators between God and men, who co‑operate in uniting them in a ministerial and dispositive manner.’ Such mediators dispose men for the action of the principal Mediator, or transmit it, but always in dependence on His merits.”

St. John Vianney: "All the saints have a great devotion to Our Lady: no grace comes from Heaven without passing through her hands. We cannot go into a house without speaking to the doorkeeper. Well, the Holy Virgin is the doorkeeper of Heaven.”

What does it mean for her to be the mediatrix? See: Is There a Mediator with the "One Mediator Between God and Man"?


Litany to Our Lady Mediatrix of all Graces

Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Ghost, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.

Holy Mary, pray for us!
Mother of God, and our Mother, pray for us!
True Mother of the living, pray for us!
Mother regenerating men in Christ unto God, pray for us!
Mother of piety and of grace, pray for us!
Mother of pardon and remission, pray for us!
Partner in human redemption, pray for us!
Recoverer of a lost world, pray for us!
Recoverer of the ages, pray for us!
Petitioner of all graces, pray for us!
Suppliant all-powerful, pray for us!
Advocate with thy Son for thy sons, pray for us!
Obtainer of the divine mercy, pray for us!
Dispenser of heavenly treasures, pray for us!
Handmaid of divine blessings, pray for us!
Fullness of grace to overflow upon all, pray for us!
Succor of the Church Militant, pray for us!
Ready helper of those in peril, pray for us!
Devoted consoler of the sorrowful, pray for us!
Conqueress of all error, pray for us!
Protectress of the world, pray for us!
Impregnable protection, pray for us!
Propitiation of the divine wrath, pray for us!
Refuge of all the unhappy, pray for us!
Shelter of orphans, pray for us!
Assured safety of the faithful, pray for us!
Hope of all who despair, pray for us!
Stay of the falling, pray for us!
Uplifter of the fallen, pray for us!
Cheer and comfort of the dying, pray for us!
Peace and joy of mankind, pray for us!
Our life, our sweetness and our hope, pray for us!
Gate of Paradise, pray for us!
Mystical stair of Jacob, pray for us!
Key of the heavenly kingdom, pray for us!
Channel of divine graces, pray for us!
Throne of divine clemency, pray for us!
Fountain of living waters, pray for us!
Fountain sealed by the Holy Spirit, pray for us!
Unfailing stream of mercy, pray for us!
Asylum of the erring, pray for us!
Haven of the shipwrecked, pray for us!
Shining star of the sea, pray for us!
Light of those who sit in darkness, pray for us!
Chamber of spiritual nuptials, pray for us!
Mediatrix of men with God, pray for us!
Mediatrix after the Mediator, pray for us!
Mediatrix reconciling us to the Son, pray for us!
Mediatrix of sinners, staunch and true, pray for us!
Mediatrix of all beneath the sky, pray for us!
Mediatrix ever pleading for us, pray for us!
Mediatrix set between Christ and His Church, pray for us!
Mediatrix who hast found favor with God, pray for us!
Mediatrix to win salvation for the world, pray for us!
Mediatrix of the mysteries of God, pray for us!
Mediatrix of all graces, pray for us!

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
V. Pray for us, our powerful Mediatrix,
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ!

Let us Pray.

O Lord Jesus Christ, our Mediator with the Father, Who hast deigned to appoint the Blessed Virgin, Thy Mother, to be our Mother also and our Mediatrix with Thee, graciously grant that whosoever goes to Thee in quest of blessings may be gladdened by obtaining them all through her, Thou Who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. R. Amen.

Prayer of Petition
 
O Ever-Virgin Mother of God and Mediatrix of Grace who art the House of Gold within which dwells thy Son, our Mediator, Jesus Christ, we humbly beseech thee to grant our requests for our salvation and the salvation of the entire world. (Here pause and make your requests) Keep us close to the Vicar of thy Son in the unity of the One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic and Roman Church. Hear our prayer and grant the requests we make to thee.

St. Joseph, Intercede for us.
St. Jude Thaddeus, Pray for us.
St. Mary of Cleophas, Pray for us.
St. Philip Neri, Pray for us.
St. Louis Grignion de Montfort, Pray for us.
St. Maximillian Kolbe, Pray for us.
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Thursday, May 30, 2013
Christ Acts through the Liturgy: Why the Fight for the Mass Still Matters
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Source: Christ Acts through the Liturgy: Why the Fight for the Mass Still Matters by Mark Riddle.

It has been almost six years since Pope Benedict XVI issued the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum. Despite deficiencies in the text (two forms of one rite, for example), the point of this motu proprio – that the Traditional Latin Mass had never been abrogated – sent shockwaves through the entire Catholic world.

Traditional Catholics had argued for decades that the traditional Mass had never been abrogated; in return they were met with scorn, ridicule, and accusations of disobedience from the corners of the “conservative” Catholic world, ever eager to be in the right. Thus, despite the noted deficiencies in the text, Summorum Pontificum was, and remains to this day, an incredibly controversial text. This is not because of the juridical questions directly, but because of the clear statement that the ancient liturgical rite of Rome, which had formed countless saints, and which the reformers sought to kill, had never been abrogated.

Fast forward over five years to March 13, 2013. Benedict XVI, having announced his abdication in early February, had renounced the burden of that office, leading to the election of Jorge Mario Cardinal Bergoglio, who would take the name Francis. In the uncertainty that followed, the question of the liturgy returned increasingly to the fore of Catholic discourse.

Continue Reading...
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Corpus Christi Procession: France 1960
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In honor of the great Solemnity of Corpus Christi, I present the following video of Corpus Christi (in color) from France in 1960.

Sacris solemniis juncta sint gaudia,
Et ex praecordiis sonent praeconia;
Recedant vetera, nova sint omnia,
Corda, voces et opera.

Great is the festive day, joyful and jubilant,
Let us with loving hearts offer the song of praise;
Freed from the sinful past, may we renew in grace
 All our thoughts and words and deeds.

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St. Joan of Arc (Mass in Some Places)
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Today, May 30th, the Feast of St. Joan of Arc is celebrated in certain parts of the world.  Recall that today is the Feast of St. Felix I on the Universal Calendar (unless Corpus Christi falls on this day as it does in 2013).  The Catholic Encyclopedia summarizes the history of this feast:
At last the cause of her beatification was introduced upon occasion of an appeal addressed to the Holy See, in 1869, by Mgr Dupanloup, Bishop of Orléans, and, after passing through all its stages and being duly confirmed by the necessary miracles, the process ended in the decree being published by Pius X on 11 April, 1909. A Mass and Office of St. Joan, taken from the "Commune Virginum," with "proper" prayers, have been approved by the Holy See for use in the Diocese of Orléans.  St. Joan was canonized in 1920 by Pope Benedict XV.
Collect:

O God, you have chosen Saint Joan of Arc to defend her country against the invading enemy. Through her intercession, grant that we may work for justice and live in peace. We pray through Jesus Christ, your son, living and reigning with you and the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever. Amen.

Secret:

O Lord, on this feast of Saint Joan of Arc, accept this pure offering of the victim who is our salvation. Grant that we may love you in all things and more than all things so that we may live for the praise of your glory. We pray through Christ our Lord. Amen. 

Post Communion:

You have strengthened us, O Lord, with bread from heaven from which Saint Joan of Arc so frequently found light and comfort. May this heavenly nourishment sustain us in the service of our brothers and sisters. We make our prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen.
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Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Video interview of Bishop Fellay on the New Seminary Project
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This is an exclusive interview with His Excellency Bishop Bernard Fellay, Superior General of the Society of St. Pius X, about the New Seminary Project. The New Seminary Project is an effort to build a new and larger St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary in picturesque Virginia to house the many young men who are following God's call to the priesthood.
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St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi
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SemiDouble (1955 Calendar): May 29

Born with the name of Catherine in 1566, St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi received a religious upbringing. She was initially sent to the Monastery of St. John as a boarder at age 14, but was taken back home by her family who opposed her religious vocation and wanted her to marry well. They eventually gave in, and Catherine became a Carmelite of the Ancient Observance at 16, taking the name Sister Mary Magdalen.

St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi was endowed with the gift of prophecy and lived as a mystic.  In 1598 she became the mistress of novices and she was chosen as subprioress in 1604.  She would hold this position until her death of natural causes on May 25, 1607.  The final three years of her life were filled with intense bodily and mental sufferings but the saint prayed to suffer more.  She led a hidden life of prayer and self-denial, praying particularly for the renewal of the Church and encouraging the sisters in holiness. 

She foretold the elevation of Pope Leo XI in a prophecy shortly before her death.

Traditional Reading at Matins:

Mary Magdalen was born at Florence of the illustrious family of the Pazzi. It might be said of her that she entered the way of perfection when a babe. When ten years of age she took a vow of perpetual virginity; and having taken the habit in the Carmelite Monas tery of Our Lady of the Angels, she became a model of every virtue. Such was her purity, that she was entirely ignorant of everything that is opposed to that virtue. She was commanded by God to fast on bread and water for five years, Sundays alone excepted, on which she might partake of Lenten diet. She mortified her body by a hair-shirt, discipline, cold, abstinence, watching, want, and every kind of suffering.

Such was the ardour of divine love that burned within her, that not being able to bear the heat, she was obliged to temper it by applying cold water to her breast. She was frequently in a state of rapture, and the wonderful ecstasies she had were almost daily. In these states, she was permitted to penetrate into heavenly mysteries, and was favoured by God with extraordinary graces. Thus strengthened, she had to endure a long combat with the princes of darkness, as also aridity and desolation of spirit, abandonment by all creatures, and divers temptations: God so willed it, that she might become a model of invincible patience and profound humility.

She was remarkable for her charity towards others. She would frequently sit up the whole night, either doing the work of the sisters, or waiting upon the sick, whose sores she sometimes healed by sucking the wounds. She wept bitterly over the perdition of infidels and sinners, and offered to suffer every sort of torment so that they might be saved. Several years before her death she heroically besought our Lord to take from her the heavenly delights wherewith he favoured her; and was frequently heard saying these words: ‘To suffer; not to die.' At length, worn out by a long and most painful illness, she passed hence to her Spouse, on the twenty-fifth of May, in the year 1607, having completed the forty-first year of her age. Many miracles having been wrought by her merits, both before and after death, she was canonized by Pope Clement the Ninth. Her body is, even to this day, preserved from corruption.

Collect:

 O God, lover of chastity, who didst inflame the blessed Virgin, Mary Magdalen, with love for Thee and didst adorn her with heavenly gifts, grant that as we honor her on this festal day, so may we follow her in purity and love. Through our Lord . . .

Prayer Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal
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Tuesday, May 28, 2013
Dom Guéranger: The End of the Movable Liturgical Cycle
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From
by Dom Guéranger, O.S.B.

The series of the mysteries is now complete, and the movable cycle of the liturgy has come to its close. We first passed, during Advent, the four weeks, which represented the four thousand years spent by mankind in entreating the eternal Father to send His Son. Our Emmanuel at length came down; we shared in the joys of His Birth, in the dolours of His Passion, in the glory of His Resurrection, in the triumph of His Ascension. Lastly, we have witnessed the descent of the Holy Ghost upon us, and we know that He is to abide with us to the last. Holy Church has assisted us throughout the whole of this sublime drama, which contains the work of our salvation. Her heavenly canticles, her magnificent ceremonies, have instructed us day by day, enabling us to follow and understand each feast and season. Blessed by this mother for the care wherewith she has placed all these great mysteries before us, thus giving us light and love! Blessed by the sacred liturgy, which has brought us so much consolation and encouragement! We have now to pass through the immovable portion of the cycle: we shall find sublime spiritual episodes, worthy of all our attention. Let us, then, prepare to resume our journey: let us take fresh courage in the thought that the Holy Ghost will direct our steps, and, by the sacred liturgy, of which He is the inspirer, will continue to throw open to us treasures of precept and example.

Please join me in continuing to follow the Traditional Feast Days of the pre-1955 calendar through my continuously updated post on Catholic Feast Days.
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Monday, May 27, 2013
St. Bede the Venerable
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James Doyle Penrose/Print Collector/Getty Images

Double (1955 Calendar): May 27

Born in the year 672 AD in England, St. Bede was born around the time England was completely Christianized.  He was raised from age seven in the abbey of Saints Peter and Paul at Wearmouth-Jarrow, and lived there for the rest of his life.  Ordained as a Benedictine in 702 by Saint John of Beverley.

St. Bede truly shows forth the illustrious example of learning.  He was far and wide considered the most learned man of his time, having written extensively on history, rhetoric, mathematics, music, astronomy, poetry, grammar, philosophy, hagiography, homiletics, and Bible commentary.  His most authoritative and well known work is "Ecclesiastical History of the English People," a complete history of the English Church up until 731. The central theme of Bede’s Historia Ecclesiastica is of the Church using the power of its spiritual, doctrinal, and cultural unity to stamp out violence and barbarism.

The Saint was employed in translating the Gospel of St. John from the Greek up to the hour of his death, which took place on Ascension Day, 735.  He was declared a Doctor of the Church on  November 13, 1899, by Pope Leo XIII.

Traditional Reading at Matins:

Bede, a priest, was born at Jarrow, on the borders of England and Scotland. At the age of seven he was placed under the care of St Bennet Biscop, Abbot of Wearmouth, to be educated. He became a monk, and so ordered his life that, whilst devoting himself wholly to the pursuit of learning, he did in no way relax the discipline of his Order. There was no branch of learning in which he was not thoroughly versed, but his chief care was the study of the Holy Scriptures, and in order to understand them better, he learnt Greek and Hebrew. At the age of thirty he was ordained priest at the command of his Abbot, and, on the advice of Acca, bishop of Hexham, immediately undertook the work of expounding the Sacred Books. In his interpretations he adhered to the teachings of the holy Fathers so strictly that he advanced nothing which they had not taught, and even made use of their very words. He ever hated sloth, and by habitually passing from reading to prayer and from prayer to reading, he so maintained the fervour of his soul that he was often moved to tears while reading or teaching. He persistently refused the office of Abbot, lest his mind should be distracted by the cares of transitory things.

The name of Bede soon became so famous for learning and piety that Pope St Sergius thought of calling him to Rome so that he might help to solve the difficult questions which had then arisen concerning sacred things. He wrote many books to reform the lives of the faithful, and to defend and propagate the faith. By these he gained such a reputation in all parts that the holy Bishop Boniface, who was later martyred, called him a 'light of the Church.' Lanfranc styled him the * teacher of the English,' and the Council of Aix-la-Chapeile ‘the admirable Doctor.' But as his writings were publicly read in the churches during his lifetime, and as it was not yet allowable to call him ‘saint,' they named him the ‘Venerable,’ a title which has ever remained peculiarly his. The power of his teaching was the greater because it was confirmed by holiness of life and the observance of religious discipline. Hence his own earnestness and example made his disciples, who were many and distinguished, eminent not only in learning, but also in sanctity.

Worn out at length by age and labour, he was seized by a serious illness. Though his sufferings lasted more than seven weeks, he ceased not from his prayers and interpretation of the Scripture, for he was engaged in translating the Gospel of St John into English for the use of his people. But when, on the eve of the Ascension, he perceived that death was near, he asked for the last sacraments of the Church; then after he had embraced his companions and was laid on a piece of sackcloth on the ground, he repeated the words: 'Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost,’ and fell asleep in the Lord. His body, which, as they say, gave forth a very sweet odour, was buried in the monastery of Jarrow, and afterwards translated to Durham with the relics of St Cuthbert. Bede, who was already venerated as a Doctor by the Benedictines and other religious Orders, was declared by Pope Leo XIII, after consultation with the Sacred Congregation of Rites, to be a Doctor of the universal Church, and the Mass and Office of Doctors was ordered to be said by all on his feast.

Collect: 

O God, who dost enlighten Thy Church by the learning of blessed Bede, Thy Confessor and Doctor: mercifully grant to Thy servants ever to be enlightened by his wisdom and helped by his merits. Through…

Prayer Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal
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The Glory of the Soldier
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On Memorial Day (USA), let us remember to pray not only for the safety of those serving our country but also for their salvation. May holy, traditional priests be sent out to give them the Sacraments of Salvation.

In World War II, there were 3,220 priests ministering to our troops overseas. In today’s Global War against terrorism, there are less than 325 priests. That is 100 less priests than just two years ago. We desperately need vocations to the military to serve as priests. Pray for traditional vocations to the priesthood.

So, please take a brief moment of silence to remember all that gave their lives for our freedom, and please pray for vocations for priests in the military.
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A Good Man: Rediscovering My Father by Mark Shriver
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I recently received a copy of A Good Man: Rediscovering My Father by Mark Shriver.  For those unfamiliar, Mark's father, Sargent Shriver, was the founder of the Peace Corp under President Kennedy.  The story Mark sets forth though is not a politically charged one but one that shows the wholeness of an authentic, faith-centered family life.

As Mark writes, "Dad was a radical, a hell-raiser who based his revolutionary public service on very orthodox instruction manuals: the Scriptures, his faith's creeds and prayers, and the life of Jesus Christ. . . . Dad lived out applied religion. He applied his faith's ethics every day to everything he did. His paradox--his radical orthodoxy--allowed him to conform to the requirements of a life in public service."  His father attended Mass everyday, even while overseas in the midst of conflict. 

Mark illustrates for us how he found his father again and rediscovered him.  This eulogy is particularly poignant at times and is something many of us can relate to when we have ill parents or grandparents.  I applaud Mark for his work in this book and recommend it.

For Catholics who are convinced that government must foster the common good and should be socially and fiscally responsible, this book is for you.  For Catholics who erroneously believe the Faith isn't timeless and has no place in government, this book is also for you - to help you see the contrary.
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