Pages

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Monday, July 26, 2004

Archbishop O'Malley won't offer blessing

Reactions 
... but Paulist priest (what a big surprise!) to make everyone feel comfortable at DNC.

San Diego News Notes | January 2004 | Articles | Young, Faithful, and Fighting , by Stanford Espedal

Reactions 
Excellent article which tells it as it is. So much for the lie that only old people are interested in the Latin Mass.

"My father goes to the Indult Mass at Holy Cross Cemetery." Yes, that's right. Churches closing everywhere and the only spare Church that the Bishop can find for the Latin Mass is an out of the way cemetery chapel.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

St Pius X, Boston

Reactions 
Parish refuses to go gently:

"St. Pius is Archbishop Sean P. O'Malley's kind of church."
But not even that will save a Church! Has the Diocese already made a list for the next round of closures?

English priest to celebrate Latin Mass in St Peter's

Reactions 
Yes, the same priest whose Mass is confined to a basketball court in Oxford!

Latin Mass in the West Oxford Community Centre

Reactions 
Churches closing everywhere but this bishop only allows the Mass in a basketball court. Part of the wide and generous permission for the Latin Mass demanded by the Holy Father of the Bishops. This Bishop is simply ignoring the Pope's express wish.

More recent news from Edmonton

Reactions 
St Francis Church to close: "You have something very special which, when it is gone, can never be replaced. "

Flashback 2001-- Immaculate Heart, Edmonton, Canada closes its doors

Reactions 
and its valuables divided between surviving parishes
See also
"The archbishop presented the chalice, the Stations of the Cross and the Book of the Gospels to three parishioners so they can present them to St. Anthony. The altar vestments will be used at the Marian Centre, the statue of the Immaculate Heart of Mary will be sent to Ephphatha House and the original altar cloths will be returned to the Sisters of the Precious Blood.

Following the singing of the final hymn, many parishioners came forward to kiss the altar or to offer a bow as a final gesture of leave-taking. Others posed for photos in front of the statues to take a final memory with them.

Rosalia Gail, who attended the Latin Mass at Immaculate Heart, sat alone at the back of the church looking numb.

'This is wrong,' she told the WCR. 'The archdiocese has no right to close this church. This is the people's real estate. The people paid for it and no one has the right to take it away from them.' "

They first closed the schools and then the parish- and couldn't wait to finish with the Latin Mass. The priest's words appeased the Diocese by saying how modern everything was realy, and this was the reward the parish received. Kind words and excuses were offered.

Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

Reactions 
in the month of July, dedicated to the Most Precious Blood.

My house shall be called a house of prayer

Reactions 
...but the Douai Charterhouse has been converted into a museum.

Church of St James the Great

Reactions 
Please pray for this Church on the day of its patronal festival

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Episcopal priorities

Reactions 
Analysed in a letter to the South African press last year: "the modern Catholic hierarchy seems more interested in ousting priests attached to the traditional Latin Mass than those attached to sexual sin"

Friday, July 23, 2004

12th Century Banada Abbey FOR SALE

Reactions 
Public opposes sale of Banada Abbey:

"Mr Gallagher stressed that public intervention was desperately needed and explained that he believed there was a hidden, silent majority who felt as strongly as he does."

The modern Church preaches the virtues of community living but then sells a property which has been at the centre of the community for over 800 years.

Let the Faithful speak out!

Cardinal Egan versus the spirit of the age.

Reactions 
Latest scores: Modern Times 4- O Cardinal Egan Diocesans: St Basil's Faithful 10-0 Trendy ideas

Who would you want to be captain of your team?

"Compare Saint Basil with Cardinal Edward Egan, who has delivered himself of the opinions that he’s “not sure when life begins”and the “trouble with the prolife movement is pro lifers.” "

Even if Cardinal Egan is not sure when life begins (!), on human life above all issues he should adopt the precautionary principal. Who would wish to be even accidentally complicit in murder?

Tensions

Reactions 
...created by closure of Catholic schools

This says it all!

Reactions 
Diocesan Neglect:

"The Diocese of Burlington squandered the opportunity to save St. Matthews. It was not the changing demographics in Vermont that caused the closure. It was the Diocese's near-sightedness. Had St. Matthew's been a church with deep pockets, perhaps the Diocese would have assigned priests to the area capable of answering the call of the people.

Regardless, the Diocese got its wish of reducing the Mountain Valley Parishes to only two churches. ...... a priest capable of nurturing the church community was assigned to the parish only in its final days. This gesture was 10 years overdue."

CruxNews.com

Reactions 
Diocesan double standards

Schools and hospitals under the hammer

Reactions 
St Joseph's Hospital, Flushing

Archdiocese bankruptcy may involve Marist High

Reactions 
Latest from Portland:

"More than $41 million worth of Lane County property owned by the Archdiocese of Portland - from schools to parishes to homes - could become fodder in the church's unprecedented and unpredictable bankruptcy case, law experts say."

More from the great fighters at Anti-Abomination.com

Reactions 
".... a highly barbaric act!

Thursday, July 22, 2004

Church of the Magdalen, Brugge/Bruges, Belgium

Reactions 
All Churches are desecrated after they are closed in one way or another but here is an example of the Churches that are desecrated while remaining in nominal use. What has an installation of feathers to do with Christianity? One installation has a pot of balm; a notice proudly proclaims that you can annoint yourself. As one web site informs its readers, "it is an ambitious project for the new millenium; to re-arrange the church to disassociate the building from its strictly Christian vocation.

Long live Christ the King!

St Mary Magdalen whose Feast we celebrate today, pray for us!

She will not be honoured in her Church in Bruges.

St Mary's Church, Cricklade

Reactions 
Exemplary- take the tour!

See especially this photograph of the Mass

But what will become of all the other Churches stolen from the Catholics at the reformation?

Closure of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Heanor

Reactions 
Church closure now becomes "opportunity for reinvigoration"!:

De Hoop, symbol of the persecution of Catholics

Reactions 
...now a concert hall

Restoration of St. Mary's School

Reactions 
Saving the building is just the first step

Church closures in New Orleans

Reactions 
Holy Trinity

Sts Peter and Paul

St Cecelia

Group of Cincinnati clergy writes to USCCB President

Reactions 
The wrong solutions!

Ads Asking for Fair Appeal Process for Parishes Scheduled to be Closed

Reactions 
Plea to Parishioners Goes Online

Good concept and good arguments. Its just that none of these parishes has to close.

Why do only three out of ten Catholics go to Mass? This is the first problem to solve!

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Tridentine Mass for dummies

Reactions 


Picture taken in Royal Church in Brussels at an exhibition associated with National Day.

Is this Cardinal Danneels trying to kid us that he is fulfilling the Pope's request to the Bishops for a wide and generous provision of the Latin Mass?

In reality, he forces the Latin Mass into a cellar with rising damp during the week. Otherwise, he allows the Sunday celebration in a borrowed school chapel.

And the Jesuits present "Mass for Dummies". Jesuit education is not what it was!

Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy of the Second Vatican Council

Reactions 
 
Para 130
During their philosophical and theological studies, clerics are to be taught about the history and development of sacred art, and about the sound principles governing the production of its works. In consequence they will be able to appreciate and preserve the Church's venerable monuments, and be in a position to aid, by good advice, artists who are engaged in producing works of art.

 

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Scotland on Sunday - The Review - Beyond repair or a city's saving grace?

Reactions 
History of bad faith by the church leadership : "The wilful neglect of GK&C's St Peter's seminary at Cardross led Professor Frank Walker to write: 'This is a building of national significance, astonishing in its design and its degradation. Nothing prepares one for the shock of the new, grown prematurely old.'

St Bernards in Drumchapel and the Immaculate Conception church, Maryhill, are merely the most notable of GK&C churches demolished with unseemly haste in an effort to cut costs. The fact that the St Patrick's Day lightning strike on St Bernard?s deliberately took place just a few days before it was scheduled to be listed by Historic Scotland was a stark reminder of just how much the church's priorities had changed. Once these decisions are taken their effects cannot be reversed. "

See the link above for pictures of the seminary in the 1960s and now.   An almost unique example of a modern building that has been allowed to decay by the Church authorities.

It was built just before the Second Vatican Council with many altars for individual priests to celebrate Mass.   See other pictures also of the altars.  The desolation of the altars cannot but rend a Catholic heart.

Flashback to 1997

Reactions 
The beginning of wintertime for the Church

New Bl. Seelos parish rises from closure of others

Reactions 
Diocese closes five churches: and then the Parish Priest of the merged parish want to be a "facilitator of healing in the new parish".

He says
“Pray that under the patronage of Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos we may be a community so on fire that others cannot but be burned by the love of God.”

Amazing statement when water has just been thrown on the remaining embers.

Please pray for all those living or dead associated with the old parishes of Annunciation, Sts. Peter and Paul, St. Cecilia, St. Gerard Majella and St. Vincent de Paul. Was the intercession of all these saints ever sought?

Ironic that a saint of the Redemptorists, a missionary order par excellence is now the patron saint of a parish made up of closed churches.

Monday, July 19, 2004

The Final Chapter in the Passionist Legacy

Reactions 
in the Archdiocese of Newark- a flashback

Blessed Dominic Barberi said during his life that if the Passionists changed their rule, he would cease to intercede for them in heaven. They have new constitutions and the rule of 1775 is treated as a dead letter. The consequences are clear.

St Thomas the Apostle, Harlem

Reactions 
No respect for the faithful: They arrived "only to find the building doors padlocked."

The Renovation Manipulation: Church Counter Renovation Handbook

Reactions 
Essential reading!

The Ecclesiastical Exemption in England- Robin Kent

Reactions 
An interesting article on the law as it relates to England on church conservation

The great Churches of Liverpool

Reactions 
...but how many have been closed by 'Pastoral Regeneration'?

The ultimate insult to the Faithful; close Churches and call it 'regeneration'

CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Church Property

Reactions 
CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Church Property: "No one of these, not even the pope, has the power to alienate ecclesiastical property validly, without some proportionate reason "

And in the section on alienation, the four reasons to sell church property

Urgent necessity - maybe only possibly true if this money is going to be used for the court cases.

Manifest utility- certainly not

Piety - definitely not

Convenience - since when can a House of God be more trouble than it is worth!

Archdiocese of Berlin, Germany challenged by prospect of bankruptcy

Reactions 
A springtime for the Church; I think not

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Gambling with the future of parishes

Reactions 
State News - StatesmanJournal.com: "Portland has taken a huge gamble, said Patrick Schiltz, a law professor at the University of St. Thomas in Minneapolis. If the gamble pays off, it will extinguish their legal liabilities, and they'll get back on the right financial track.

Otherwise, Schiltz said, the church could be forced to sell off parishes and reveal information that could propel future litigation, potentially hurting thousands of parishioners."

Saturday, July 17, 2004

How a Canadian church was saved

Reactions 
In this case, the parish priest wanted to do an over-the-top modernisation but it just shows the importance of the faithful doing their homework and not believing everything that they are told.

How many Catholic Churches would have survived today if over-inflated quotes for restoration had been checked and audited? Dioceses love to say that the upkeep of a Church has become too expensive. Never believe a surveyer appointed by the Diocese.
Reactions 

Another photo of the interior of the former Church of Our Lady Immaculate and St Pius X in Bangor, North Wales.   The congregation moved to a former anglican church which now carries the title of St Mary and St James.   Seems the diocese in North Wales wanted to play down or forget the great dogma of the Immaculate Conception and the great reign of Pope St Pius X
 
(Pope St Pius X's Catechism is a wonderful and spiritually beneficial read!)


My house shall be called a house of prayer...

Reactions 


but the Diocese sold Our Lady Immaculate and St Pius X Bangor
 ...and it has been turned into the Black Bull Inn.

Leading layman demands an explanation- now.

Reactions 
BBC NEWS | Europe | Porn furore vexes Austrian leader

Thank you to the Johnstown Convention & Visitors Bureau

Reactions 
for this description (scroll down): of St. Mary's Byzantine Catholic Church -- 801-803 Somerset Avenue, Windber

This church was founded by immigrants from Austro-Hungary and the current structure was built in 1927 by the Windber Lumber Company. Plans for this building were drawn by noted Johnstown architect Walter Myton after the congregation outgrew its brick-clad, wood frame structure built in 1901 as the first Byzantine Catholic Church in Somerset County. This Romanesque Revival Church's prominent features include domed central and paired side towers, as well as, a cladding of mottled tapestry brick.

Historic building! Byzantine Rite! National church!

Three reasons the Diocese would want to target this Church for closure. They say that the building detioriated; but who was responsible for the building?

A cancer research centre is to be built on the site.

HoustonChronicle.com - Church should be faithful to own guidelines

Reactions 
Church held to account by conservationists: "In light of the impending demolition of Blessed Sacrament School and the proposed demolition of Sacred Heart Co-Cathedral, the Diocese of Galveston-Houston should pause to look at its own guidelines before destroying these local landmarks. Built of Living Stones: Art, Architecture, and Worship, contains the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' official guidelines for constructing and renovating church buildings."

Retreat centre faces closure

Reactions 
"One of Canberra's most historic Catholic landmarks to close":

"Over the years, Blackfriars has become well known as a gathering place for Catholics of the Archdiocese and beyond and for members of other churches, including Anglicans, other faiths, including Buddhists, and various secular organisations and groups."

None of these ecumenical and inter-religious partners will rush to save a Catholic retreat centre. In fact, privately, they can't wait for its closure.

Incidentally, because so many religious houses closed in the seventies, eighties and nineties and their property sold, there are some religious orders who must be sitting on cash mountains. Why can't this money be used to save the parish churches?

My house shall be called a house of prayer...

Reactions 

... but you have turned it into a power station.
 
Solar energy facility, St Konrad's Church, Linz Austria.

Friday, July 16, 2004

My house shall be called a house of prayer ..

Reactions 


...but you have turned it into a flower exhibition.
 
Belgian National Basilica to the Sacred Heart Summer 2003

Church Demolition Week

Reactions 
.... but the people destroying the Churches are the sworn enemies of the Catholic Church

The diocese wanted to demolish but..

Reactions 
historic Church saved by Latin Mass and the local town council

St John Neumann: The Little Redemptorist Bishop

Reactions 
Tantus labor, non sit cassus- so much work, let it not be lost

Diocese sends Faithful to Limbo

Reactions 
Closure of St Susanna's Church in Boston : "'St. Susanna's is the heartbeat of this community. Why would you stop a beating heart?' "

The sister church, St Susanna's Church in Rome is the national church of the USA in the Eternal City. The martyrdoms and the day of death of St Tibertius and St Susanna (11 August) are established by the witness of the oldest Martyrologies and the earliest places of worship. in Rome.

Ironic, then that St Susanna's should be near the top of the Boston list.

Local council trys to rescue Catholics from their diocese.

Reactions 
But Church says zoning change won't stop parish closing

Who owns the places where you worship?

Reactions 
Church lists $100 million in accounts:

"An unfolding legal battle over whether the archdiocese is the true owner of parish property, as priest sex-abuse claimants say, or whether the archdiocese merely holds the property in charitable trust for its 124 parishes. "

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Beware of the Evangelisation Planning Committee!

Reactions 
and its intentions to "realign parishes".

Now, where do Our Lord, St Paul, any of the Church fathers or the great saints of the Church talk about "realignment"?

Underneath the arches

Reactions 
I'll dream my dreams away

How could anyone live in a desecrated Church?

In faithful tribute

Reactions 
The soon-to-be-homeless veteran's memorial outside the soon-to-be-closed St George's Catholic Church, Boston

Oh, that the Church hierarchy had displayed even a small part of the fidelity of St George and the soldiers who lived and died for their country under his patronage.

Preservation Online: Today's News Archives: Wisconsin Church Should Be Saved, Residents Say

Reactions 
"The church says the building is crumbling when it is probably more sound and more solid than most buildings,' says masonry restoration expert ":

Another technique for closing a Church. Be less than truthful on the amount of repairs required.

Flashback to 1994

Reactions 
Altars in Escrow

My house shall be called a house of prayer

Reactions 
but you have turned it into luxurious flats

And Sold!

Not even one of the earliest Roman Catholic churches in Boston is safe.

The people will not be fobbed off with promises of prayer rooms

Reactions 
St Joseph's Belfast:

And surprise, surprise!

"This same Bishop, who told us how sad he was to close our chapel, had a deal on the table to sell it all along. "

To render a House of God desolate is an abomination Matthew 24:15

Reactions 
Home Page

The campaign to save Saint Ann's Armenian Catholic Cathedral, which is also the National Shrine to Saint Ann and the Church of Saint Thomas the Apostle, both in New York.

And, yes, what a big surprise for all readers of this blog.

ANOTHER NATIONAL PARISH IN THE EPISCOPAL FIRING LINE.

It's a wonderful life

Reactions 
Many will have seen the film 'Its a wonderful life'
about a man who contemplates suicide but then is taken on a guided tour by his guardian angel of what will happen to other people's lives if he jumps off the bridge. The dioceses are talking about all sorts of indicators, but the absence of just one Church is immeasurable in the scheme of salvation."

Monterey Diocese Watch

Reactions 
A short list of abuses that take place during Mass but the Bishops are too busy closing churches and protecting child molesters to do anything about this.

Endangered St. Anthony of Padua Church marks 120 years

Reactions 
Polish churches threatened with closure. What a great surprise two more national churches threatened with closure!

One wonders how the Archbishop can hide his shame as he presides over the Anniversary festivities.

Two dozen of the Toledo Catholic Diocese's 157 parishes to close

Reactions 
But which ones?

New methodology here: announce Church closures but keep them guessing as to which ones. This sets one parish against another on the time honoured principle of divide and rule.

The Church is a fairly desperate state when it resorts to the ways of the world.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

TownOnline.com - Sudbury Town Crier - Local News

Reactions 
TownOnline.com - Sudbury Town Crier - Local News: "We had addressed the issues of funding and lowered attendance already".

You will never please a diocese who wants to close your Church.

The Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News - 14-Jul-04 - St. Anne's remains symbol of Irish-Catholic struggles

Reactions 
The Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News - 14-Jul-04 - St. Anne's remains symbol of Irish-Catholic struggles:

2004 City Landmark Award

Irish national church

Oldest continuously operating Catholic church in the State

2004 People’s Choice Award for favorite historical building

Spectacular, stained-glass windows

Judgement from Diocese: MUST BE CLOSED AT ALL COSTS

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Little Italy takes to the streets

Reactions 
Little Italy takes to the streets

Italians locked out of their own Church forced to have an open air service.

See the great pictures of a great community by then clicking on "Italian parade".

Our Lady of the Rosary pray for us!

Concelebration and the shortage of priests

Reactions 


Next time you see a concelebration, think how many parishes did not have a Mass that day.

...and how many priests no longer say a Mass every day?

The way to destruction

Reactions 
It all started when they removed the Blessed Sacrament from the tabernacle on the principal altar of the Church. The Blessed Sacrament was put into a side chapel, which is now often locked. Then came the do-it-yourself and please-yourself Masses. Then the sanctuary area was renovated. Then with the removal of the altar rails, it was no longer clearly a sanctuary. Then the supply of priests dried up. No reserved Sacrament, no sanctuary, no priest, no Mass and soon no Church.

Churches wait for closure dates

Reactions 
Church closure announced on Pentecost Sunday! Cap that for irony!

And look!
They just opened last year a $1.3 million parish center! More than happy to take the donations!

Our Lady Help of Christians, was also the dedication which Don Bosco gave to the mother Church of the Salesian Order. How can they close a Church dedicated to Our Lady under the title which has given the Church so many triumphs?

Scottie Press Guestbook

Reactions 
Scottie Press Guestbook:

John McNamara in the Scottie Press Guest book
Date: Tue Jul 13 14:31:44 CEST 2004

St Helens already we have lost Sacred Hearts Church at present it is being demolished.St Mary`s Lowe House and Holy Cross are to join as one parish in September father Paul Glover will be Parish priest. Canon John Pennington will retire and will still be at Holy Cross with Father James Mathews. The Passionists are also leaving St Anne and Blessed Dominic at Sutton and they have already altered the Mass times. the Parish priest from St Vincents Parr will take over and will also have Our Lady`s Fleet Lane. The new church of St Joseph Peasley Cross is to close. no changes at present at St Theresa`a Sutton Manor My personal view is that the these priests are going to crack up with the extra responsibity of two or even more parish`s.Some are already grumpy and bad tempered which could mean more could leave the ministry. In 5 years time I can see even more catholic Church`s closing. If a company is short of labour they advertise . Why can`t the Archdiocese have a massive campaign advertising for good catholic men to join the priesthood priests should be out on the streets preaching the good news if they cannot get the laity to go to church. if we all said a Hail Mary for Vocations every day. I think the Lord will provide us with the fruit from the Vineyard

Church closing viewed as part of expansion plan!

Reactions 
Another "close two churches and build another" deal!

TownOnline.com - Wayland Town Crier - Boston again!

Reactions 
"A gross injustice being perpetrated on Catholic churchgoers"

A great article!

Pilot Stories -2/27/2004 - Surviving the pain of parish closure

Reactions 
Pilot Stories -2/27/2004 - Surviving the pain of parish closure

So soothing are the words of the Archdiocese to cover for the American wide and deliberate policy of targetting the national parishes.

St. Bernard's closure a mistake?

Reactions 
St. Bernard's closure a mistake?:

Property value considerations may have been a factor in the archdiocese's decision to close St. Bernard's.

11 million dollars just proves to be too tempting.

New church closing technique. Rig your own process by omitting a church from your list.

But now poor Corpus Christi is in the firing line.

Green Bay Press-Gazette

Reactions 
Holy Martyrs, Holy Trinity prepare for merger

Weasel word number four: a period of readjustment

And another "if you believe that, you believe anything" statement
“It’s not just a closure. It’s a new life,”

Pure madness. They are closing two perfectly good churches and building a new one.


The new dedication of the Parish

Dedications to the the Holy Martyrs of Gorcum in this ecumenical age and to the Most Holy Trinity in this era of inter-religious dialogue are now an embarrassment. Although Prince of Peace is one of the titles of the Messiah from Isaiah 12, the meaning is flexible enough to be offensive to no-one.

Ironically, the news of this church closure came just before the
Feast of the Holy Martyrs of Gorcum on July 9
At Briel in Holland, the passion of the nineteen martyrs of Gorcum. Of these, nine priests and two lay brothers were of the Order of Friars Minor, four were secular priests, two Premonstratensians, one Canon Regular of St. Augustine, and one Dominican. For vindicating the authority of the Roman Church and the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, they endured various insults and torments from the Calvinist heretics, and their great suffering was ended by all of them being hanged. Pope Pius IX included them in the number of holy martyrs.


Mary, Queen of Martyrs and All Holy Martyrs of Gorcum pray for us!



A pilgrimage still takes place on the nearest Saturday to the Feast. Anyone wishing to have more details can e-mail churchclosing@hotmail.com

Monday, July 12, 2004

Closure of Nuestra Senora del Carmen

Reactions 
See more information added to blog below.

Anyone with any news on church closures anywhere in the world, let me know on churchclosing@hotmail.com

Our Lady of Perpetual Help

Reactions 


This site is dedicated to her protection. All should ask for her prayers for parishes under threat.

Story of the Icon of Perpetual Help

"HOLY MARY OF PERPETUAL HELP" is the title which, according to an ancient document, the Blessed Virgin herself used in bringing her picture into the devotional life of Rome in the closing days of the fifteenth century. This, the Perpetual Help story is the story of a picture of Mary and her Divine Son, our Redeemer, and of the devotion to them which developed around it. Jesus is seen as preoccupied even from his tenderest years with the price he would one day pay in his Passion for our salvation, and Mary is seen as his compassionate Mother.

Historically, the story of Perpetual Help is a story of people: an unknown artist who painted the picture on the island of Crete, a merchant who for some reason brought the picture to Rome in 1499, a friend of the merchant to whom he gave the picture and whose wife had visions of Mary, telling her she wanted the picture enshrined for public veneration in a little Roman church (of St. Matthew) between the two great basilicas of St. Mary Major and St. John Lateran. The next people in the story were the men of the religious community of St. Augustine at St. Matthew's who received the picture with joy and soon found that it aroused great devotion among the faithful. There were many liturgical services, impressive conversions, even miracles, so much so that the picture came to be called the miraculous image of Perpetual Help.

Then, in 1799, all came to a grinding halt. The people this time were Napoleon and his general in Rome, François Massena. Besides carrying off the Pope into exile, they ordered the destruction of some thirty churches. Among these was St. Matthew's. The Augustinians moved to other monasteries and the miraculous picture went with them into obscurity. In time, the memory of the glorious days was all but forgotten. But not quite.

Two new people enter the story. An old Augustinian Brother named Augustino Orsetti had a favorite altar boy, named Michael Marchi, who came to serve Mass at the monastery of Our Lady in Posterula. There, the brother, who had once been at St. Matthew's, often pointed to a picture in the sacristy and told Michael that it was the famous Madonna, made homeless by the army of Napoleon. "Remember, Michael," he would say. Michael remembered. He grew up, became a priest in the community of the Redemptorists (the next people of the story), who had just bought property in Rome (1855) and built a church in honor of their recently canonized founder, St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori.

In tracing the history of their property, the Redemptorists soon came upon the startling discovery that they had taken the place of old St. Matthew's and their church was now the "little church between the two great basilicas"-the very spot chosen by "Mary of Perpetual Help." Now, if only they could find the missing Madonna. And, wonder of wonders, there was among them Father Michael Marchi, erstwhile altar-boy, who had the answer.

After a year of prayers, Father Nicholas Mauron, Redemptorist Superior General, petitioned Pope Pius IX for permission to have the miraculous picture enshrined in their church of Sant' Alfonso. The Holy Father was so pleased that he wrote the directive there and then to the Augustinians to arrange for the transfer of the picture from St. Mary's in Posterula to Sant' Alfonso. Later, when the picture had been duly enshrined, the Pope went to pray before it. It is said that it brought tears to his eyes. "How beautiful she is. Make her known," he said.

Taking the pope's wish as a pious command, the Redemptorists began at once, and continue to this day to make her known. And this is where the story of Perpetual Help really becomes the story of the people; the thousands of Redemptorists and their disciples who have promoted devotion to Mary of Perpetual Help and the missions who have come to know and love her as their perpetual help. Among these thousands of preachers and millions of devotees, we are pleased and grateful to number ourselves --Rev. John V. McGuire, C.SS.R.

TownOnline.com - Wellesley Townsman - Closure of St James the Great

Reactions 
TownOnline.com - Wellesley Townsman - Local News

Another technique for closing churches; tell the Faithful either that its God's will or a trial sent by him. Just another way of avoiding blame.

St James is the Patron of Spain and of all pilgrims. At the rate some dioceses are going, we will soon be literally the pilgrim church.

Lowell Sun Online - Closure of Nuestra Senora del Carmen

Reactions 
"An absolute architectural gem that almost is equal to the basilicas in Rome." and more

"Perhaps the finest local example of "Romanesque Revival" religious architecture"

"Nuestra Senora, the only church in Lowell with Masses in Spanish."

A historical gem and a Church serving the needs of a particular community, so first in the firing line for the officials from the Diocese.

Dr. Maria Cuesta from Nuestra Senora del Carmen even fled Cuba and now she finds its not Castro but the diocese that specialises in destroying churches.

Sandi Gallagher from Saint Joan of Arc (also closing) puts it so well:

"I just hate the message this sends to children," Gallagher said. "You build and support something and it can be pulled out from under you. ... It's not about religion, it's about money."

Nuestra Senora del Carmen - Our Lady of Carmel Prayer to Our Lady of Mount Carmel

O Most beautiful flower of Mount Carmel, fruitful vine, splendor of Heaven, Blessed Mother of the Son of God, Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity. O Star of the Sea, help me and show me herein You are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God, Queen of Heaven and Earth, I humbly beseech You from the bottom of my heart to succor me in this necessity. There are none that can withstand Your power.

O show me herein You are my Mother. O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee.

O show me herein You are my Mother. O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee.

O show me herein You are my Mother. O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to Thee.

Sweet Mother, I place this cause in Your hands.

Sweet Mother, I place this cause in Your hands.

Sweet Mother, I place this cause in Your hands.


WBZ-AM: Reconfiguration of the Archdiocese Boston Parishes

Reactions 
WBZ-AM: Reconfiguration of the Archdiocese Boston Parishes

Weasel word number number 3.

Reconfiguration

Ironic that a Franciscan Archbishop should be closing churches.

From the Life of St Francis
One day, while in the ruined Church of San Damiano, he asked: "Lord, what do you want of me?" He heard a voice that seemed to be coming from a painted crucifix on the wall. That voice said: "Francis, rebuild my church."

Francis immediately sold all his property and gave the money to the Church.

Our Lord did not say "Francis, reconfigure my church"!

My house shall be called a house of prayer

Reactions 
but you have turned it into a concert hall

Soon to be homeless Padre Pio statue

Reactions 
Boston.com / News / Local / Mass. / Soon to be homeless Padre Pio statue

Not even a centre of devotion to Padre Pio is safe.

Please pray this prayer for the parish.

Chaplet of Padre Pio
Oh Jesus, full of grace and charity, victim for sinners,
so impelled by Your love of us that You willed to
die on the cross, I humbly entreat Thee to glorify in
heaven and on earth, the servant of God, Padre Pio
of Pietrelcina, who generously participated in Your
sufferings, who loved Thee so much and laboured so
faithfully for the glory of Your heavently Father and
for the good of souls. With confidence, I beseech Thee
to grant me, through his intercession, [your intention]which I ardently desire.

Say three Our Fathers, three Hail Marys
and Glorias.

Imprimatur: Manfredonia, 12-3-1971
+ Valentina Vallati Archbishop

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Garry Wills: Abortion isn't an issue for the church to decide!

Reactions 
Garry Wills: Abortion isn't an issue for the church to decide!:

"Abortion is not a church issue"

An original argument and totally wrong. If this is not a Church issue, no issue is of concern to the Catholic Church.

The Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News - 11-Jul-04 - 2,100 parishioners affected by Catholic church closings

Reactions 
The Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News - 11-Jul-04 - 2,100 parishioners affected by Catholic church closings

Another technique for closing a Church.

Appoint a lay council from two churches which you know will split 4-4 on which Church will close. Then say that you are forced to make the decision yourself.

Divide the Faithful and close their Churches.

AP Wire | 07/09/2004 | Clay plans to meet with archbishop on communion issue

Reactions 
AP Wire | 07/09/2004 | Clay plans to meet with archbishop on communion issue

Quote
Rep. William Lacy Clay, a St. Louis Democrat who favors abortion rights, plans to meet Monday with the archbishop.

"I think Archbishop Burke has gone too far; he is now delving into politics," Clay said in an interview on Friday. "Perhaps the Catholic Church should surrender their 501-C status."

And now the threats start. 501-C status means charity status.

Quote
Clay and McCarthy were among 48 Catholic members of Congress who signed a letter in May warning that the church risks bringing "great harm" on itself if bishops decide to deny Communion to legislators who support abortion rights or take other public positions that are at odds with church doctrine.

More threats; what exactly do they mean by "great harm". Any number of political leaders have made similar threats throughout history. The difference from today is that these leaders were not Catholics.

Quote
Earlier this year, Democratic State Auditor Claire McCaskill expressed disappointment at some Catholic leaders' decisions to shun abortion-rights politicians. She attends St. Gerard Majella parish, which is also in the St. Louis archdiocese.

Ironic, St Gerard Majella is the Patron Saint of Expectant Mothers.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

ONN. Ohio News Now: Catholic diocese will close parishes in northwest Ohio

Reactions 
ONN. Ohio News Now: Catholic diocese will close parishes in northwest Ohio:

To quote, The diocese said even though a realignment study designed to consolidate parishes lists 24 that could be closed, the number is not set.

Time to start a collection of weasel words used by dioceses to justify the unthinkable, the desecration of God's own houses on earth.

Here are two to start with
"Realignment"
"Consolidation"

Also added to here are techniques used by the authorities to close churches. Don't set the number of churches to be closed in order to make parish engage in beauty contests. Main indicator here: how many quasi-ecclesiastical committees can you fit into one parish? These committees normally usurp the power of the priest, but more than happy to appease the Bishop in maniac plans for pastoral re-organisation.

Defence mechanism: forget the committee work and set up a Rosary group in your parish and pray the Rosary daily. Many are the victories won by the Rosary.



Telegraph | News | Brown's hope for debt aid blessing dashed as Pope takes a break

Reactions 
Telegraph | News | Brown's hope for debt aid blessing dashed as Pope takes a break

Just what the Vatican needs in the midst of all the problems besetting the Catholic Church, a lecture on world poverty from a Scottish presbyterian socialist. The last people that will be helped by this lecture are, naturally enough, the poor. Makes a few socialists feel better, especially the man who will never be Prime Minister.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Feast of St John Fisher and St Thomas More

Reactions 
Today is their Feast in all the Dioceses of England and Wales

How wonderful the Lord is in his Saints.

Here is excellent material on St John Fisher and St Thomas More as well as a top-grade site on St Thomas More.

Oh that there were just a few more Thomas Mores and John Fishers to be found in the Catholic Church in our own age. But not one of his brother bishops supported Fisher and the Heads of the major religious houses actually voted that the small monasteries should be closed. They thought that they could buy some time. Begins to sound almost contemporary.

School's impending closure shakes town's Catholic core

Reactions 
School's impending closure shakes town's Catholic core

The first thing that you do if you are an official from the Diocese who wants to close a Church is to make the Faithful believe that they have somehow failed; starting with "you haven't been open enough you know". Often this idea comes from people who would wish the Faithful to be open to almost everything that's evil in the world.

Second strategem; assure everyone that it really, truly will be their own decision.

Final Mass celebrates church's rich history

Reactions 
Final Mass celebrates church's rich history

Why, O why always the historic Churches?

"Parish Priest Fr Laurie Bent said most parishioners had recognised the inevitability of the church's closure"

If you believe this, you believe anything!

City's first Catholic church closed

Reactions 
The Union Leader and New Hampshire Sunday News - 09-Jul-04 - City's first Catholic church is once again at a crossroads

Seems that Churches are most likely these days to suffer at the hands of the Catholic authorities than to be attacked by anti-Catholic mobs. You can all guess how dreadful the new church built to replace St Ann's will be.

Needless to say, yet another example of the oldest and most venerable Churches being targetted. "We were Catholic but now we are OK and trendy" type of modernist can't wait for the dearest treasures of Catholicism to be destroyed.

The Left-wing busybodies who are shaming the Catholic Church

Reactions 
Telegraph | Opinion | The Left-wing busybodies who are shaming the Catholic Church:

The Secretariat of the Bishops Conference of England and Wales has enough Labour members to form their own branch and worse, this article highlights how the ecclesiastical bureaucrats are usurping the power of the Bishop in his Diocese. So who are realy taking the decisions on church closures in any diocese? The laity need to be told.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Closure of St. Brigid Catholic Church - San Francisco, California

Reactions 
St. Brigid Catholic Church - San Francisco, California

10 years ago the Diocese turned the police on the faithful and ignored the 18,000 signatures on a petition.

St Brigid and All Saints of Ireland pray for us!

Italians revolt over church closure

Reactions 
BBC NEWS | England | Manchester | Italians revolt over church closure:

"What would it mean to you if your grandmother, great grandfather and father had all been buried, had their funeral, in this church? "

And the Diocese did not care for the inheritance.



Fighting Church closures in Boston

Reactions 
Boston.com / News / Local / Parishioner appeals closing

As I hear of Catholic Church closures, I will post them on this website, so that communities do not feel isolated in their fight for the birthright of Catholics, a parish church where Our Lord is honoured in the Blessed Sacrament.

The promises of Zen?

Reactions 
Let's have a nice chat about Zen

And turn our backs on Our Lord and his most Sacred Heart. Our Lord has promised nothing to those who practice Zen but to those that are devoted to his Sacred Heart, he gives no less than

Twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart
As given by Our Lord to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque

1. I will give them all the graces necessary for their state of life.

2. I will give peace in their families.

3. I will console them in all their troubles.

4. They shall find in My Heart an assured refuge during life and especially at the hour of death.

5. I will pour abundant blessings on all their undertakings.

6. Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and infinite ocean of mercy.

7. Tepid souls shall become fervent.

8. Fervent souls shall speedily rise to great perfection.

9. I will bless the homes in which the image of My Sacred Heart shall be exposed and honored.

10. I will give to priests the power to touch the most hardened hearts.

11. Those who propagate this devotion shall have their name written in My Heart, and it shall never be effaced.

12. I promise thee in the excess of the mercy of My Heart, that its all-powerful Love will grant to all those who shall receive Communion on the First Friday of Nine consecutive months the grace of final repentance; they shall not die under My displeasure, nor without receiving the Sacraments; My Heart shall be their assured refuge at that last hour.

Pictures of Desecration of the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima

Reactions 
Pictures of a Desecration

Pictures speak lounder than words. Here are pictures of the desecration. Show them to your friends.

Particularly grotesque are the pictures of the local Bishop and the Rector of the Shrine being dressed in a Hindu prayer shawl.

Our Lady of Fatima pray for us!

Hindu Ritual Performed at Fatima Shrine

Reactions 
THE FATIMA NETWORK NEWS: Hindu Ritual Performed at Fatima Shrine

This is a very full news story on the pagan rituals performed at the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima.

It won't be long before Catholics are compelled by the state in some countries to share their buildings with other "faith communities" with the willing collaboration of some unfaithful clerics.

The early Christians died rather than be forced to sacrifice to strange Gods. The Hindu rituals at the Fatima Shrine dishonour their witness.

It is important to share this information with Marian and Fatima prayer groups when you have the opportunity.

Money trouble for the church

Reactions 
Money trouble for the church

This article has a useful question and answer on the bankruptcy of Portland Diocese.

Ignore the advert about the FMA!

Save St Mary's of the Angels Liverpool

Reactions 
Scottie Press Online

What an impressive picture of the lilies placed on the railings of the Church! Please say a Rosary for the Church. Why do the authorities always want to close the most beautiful and historic churches, not just in Liverpool and Manchester but also in other places, especially the American dioceses.

St Francis pray for us!
All Saints and Martyrs of England pray for us!

McCarrick tempered letter on pro-choice politicians - The Washington Times: Nation/Politics - July 07, 2004

Reactions 
McCarrick tempered letter on pro-choice politicians - The Washington Times: Nation/Politics - July 07, 2004

And now the spinning starts. It is all very reminiscent of Cardinal Hume claiming that the Vatican document on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual persons had been rendered harsher by the English translation.

So much for truth in and out of season!

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Papal condemnation of the Blood Libel

Reactions 
Blessed Pope Gregory X writing in 1271:
"It sometimes happens that certain Christians lose their Christian children. The charge is then made against the Jews by their enemies that they have stolen and slain these children in secret, and that they have sacrificed the heart and the blood. The fathers of the said children, or other Christians who are envious of the Jews, even hide their children in order to have a pretext to molest the Jews, and to extort money from them so as to pay their dues. They assert thereupon, most falsely, that the Jews have taken away these children and slain them, and have sacrificed the heart and the blood. Yet their Law expressly forbids the Jews to sacrifice or to eat or to drink blood: even though it be of animals which have the hoof cloven. This has been confirmed in our *curia* on many occasions by Jews converted to the Christian faith. None the less, on this pretext many Jews have frequently been seized and detained, against all justice."

"We decree that no Christian shall stir up anything new against [the Jews]. Moreover, if any one, after having known the content of this decree, should--which we hope will not happen--attempt audaciously to act contrary to it, then let him suffer punishment in his rank and position, or let him be punished by the penalty of excommunication, unless he makes amends for his boldness by proper recompense."

Pope Innocent IV writing to the German Church in 1247
"We have received a mournful complaint from the Jews of Germany, telling how some princes, both ecclesiastical and lay, together with other nobles and powerful persons in your cities and dioceses, devise evil plans against them and invent various pretexts in order to rob them unjustly of their goods, and gain possesion thereof. This they do without stopping to consider prudently that it is from the archives of the Jews, so to speak, that the testimonies of the Christian faith come forth . . . [The Jews] are falsely accused that at [Passover] they make communion with the heart of a slain child. This is alleged to be enjoined by the Law, whereas in fact such an act is manifestly contrary to it. Moverover, if the body of a dead man is by chance found anywhere, they maliciously ascribe the cause of death to the action of the Jews. On this, and many other fictitious pretexts, they rage against the Jews and despoil them of their possessions, against God and Justice and the privileges mercifully granted to them by the Holy See."

www.chiesa | The Kerry Affair: What Ratzinger Wanted from the American Bishops

Reactions 
www.chiesa | The Kerry Affair: What Ratzinger Wanted from the American Bishops

PS Just to give due reference to the source for the Ratzinger document and to recommend this informative website. Most of the articles in English always contain new insights. Lucky the people who can also read the Italian articles.

Ratzinger on reception of Holy Communion

Reactions 
Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion. General Principles
Memorandum to the American Bishop's Conference
by Joseph Ratzinger

1. Presenting oneself to receive Holy Communion should be a conscious decision, based on a reasoned judgement regarding one’s worthiness to do so, according to the Church’s objective criteria, asking such questions as: “Am I in full communion with the Catholic Church? Am I guilty of grave sin? Have I incurred a penalty (e.g. excommunication, interdict) that forbids me to receive Holy Communion? Have I prepared myself by fasting for at least an hour?” The practice of indiscriminately presenting oneself to receive Holy Communion, merely as a consequence of being present at Mass, is an abuse that must be corrected (cf. Instruction “Redemptionis Sacramentum,” nos. 81, 83).

2. The Church teaches that abortion or euthanasia is a grave sin. The Encyclical Letter Evangelium vitae, with reference to judicial decisions or civil laws that authorise or promote abortion or euthanasia, states that there is a “grave and clear obligation to oppose them by conscientious objection. [...] In the case of an intrinsically unjust law, such as a law permitting abortion or euthanasia, it is therefore never licit to obey it, or to ‘take part in a propoganda campaign in favour of such a law or vote for it’” (no. 73). Christians have a “grave obligation of conscience not to cooperate formally in practices which, even if permitted by civil legislation, are contrary to God’s law. Indeed, from the moral standpoint, it is never licit to cooperate formally in evil. [...] This cooperation can never be justified either by invoking respect for the freedom of others or by appealing to the fact that civil law permits it or requires it” (no. 74).

3. Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia.

4. Apart from an individuals’s judgement about his worthiness to present himself to receive the Holy Eucharist, the minister of Holy Communion may find himself in the situation where he must refuse to distribute Holy Communion to someone, such as in cases of a declared excommunication, a declared interdict, or an obstinate persistence in manifest grave sin (cf. can. 915).

5. Regarding the grave sin of abortion or euthanasia, when a person’s formal cooperation becomes manifest (understood, in the case of a Catholic politician, as his consistently campaigning and voting for permissive abortion and euthanasia laws), his Pastor should meet with him, instructing him about the Church’s teaching, informing him that he is not to present himself for Holy Communion until he brings to an end the objective situation of sin, and warning him that he will otherwise be denied the Eucharist.

6. When “these precautionary measures have not had their effect or in which they were not possible,” and the person in question, with obstinate persistence, still presents himself to receive the Holy Eucharist, “the minister of Holy Communion must refuse to distribute it” (cf. Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts Declaration “Holy Communion and Divorced, Civilly Remarried Catholics” [2002], nos. 3-4). This decision, properly speaking, is not a sanction or a penalty. Nor is the minister of Holy Communion passing judgement on the person’s subjective guilt, but rather is reacting to the person’s public unworthiness to receive Holy Communion due to an objective situation of sin.

[N.B. A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate’s permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favour of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons.]

Pictorial History of Ronald Reagan

Reactions 
Pictorial History of Ronald Reagan

Reagan was born Catholic.

Please pray for the repose of his soul.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Una Voce

Reactions 
Una Voce

Another great site to get informed about the revival of the Latin Mass throughout the world.