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Thursday, July 09, 2009

Feast of the Holy Martyrs of Gorcum

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Putting faces to the names of the martyrs

Feast of the Holy Martyrs of Gorcum

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in the Church of St Nicholas, Brussels

THE GORCUM MARTYRS
martyred 9 July 1572
canonized 29 June 1867
feast day 9 July

The Martyrs
There were nineteen martyrs. Fifteen of them were residents of Gorcum (Gorinchem, a town about fifteen miles east-south-east of Rotterdam). Of the four others, one was from Heinenoord, two from Monster, and the last from Hoornaar, a village near Gorcum.
(The Roman numerals refer to the order of the statuettes of the martyrs on the sides of the reliquary, starting on the side-aisle side, altar end, going clockwise.)

I
Lenaert Veghel: see below, at end of list)
There were Eleven Franciscans:

II
Claes Pieck, born in Gorcum on 23 August 1534 of a well-to-do family. He attended school at 's-Hertogenbosch, where he entered the Franciscan Order. He read theology at the Order's own college in Louvain and was ordained priest in about 1558. He then worked as a preacher in Louvain, Brussels and Antwerp before being called to the monastery at Gorcum as Guardian, the Franciscan equivalent of "Father Superior". (Aged 38 at the time of his death)

III
Jeronymus of Weert, born in about 1522 in Weert (about 15 miles / 23 km south-east of Eindhoven). He was a Franciscan monk who, having served as parish priest in Goirle, spent a year in Jerusalem. In 1566 he was elected assistant ("vicar") to the Guardian of the monastery in Gorcum. (Aged about 50)

IV
Nicasius of Heeze, born in Heeze (a few miles south-east of Eindhoven, in the Campine) in about 1522. Heread theology at the University of Louvain and entered the Franciscan order. As a priest he lived in the Franciscanmonasteries of Leiden (Leyden), Haarlem (where he was the responsible for the tertiaries), and lastly Gorcum. Hewas a father confessor and spiritual guide. (Aged about 50)

V
Dirk Eem (or Van Embden, or Van Der Eem), born in Amersfoort in about 1499, of noble stock. A Franciscan, he was responsible for the tertiaries of his order in Gorcum. (He was in his seventies)

VI
Willehad the Dane, a Franciscan, born in about 1482 in Holstein. At the time of the Reformation he fled toEngland, from thence to Scotland and lastly to Gorcum in the Netherlands. It is interesting to note that in spite of allhis efforts to avoid capture he still became a martyr and saint at the ripe old age of 90!

VII
Govaert of Melver, (real surname Coart), was born in Melveren in about 1512. A Franciscan, he was theverger of the monastery in Gorcum. (Aged about 60)

VIII
Antonius of Weert, born in Weert (cf Jeronymus) in about 1523. Like the other Antonius he was a Franciscan mission preacher. (Aged about 50)

IX
Antonius of Hoornaar, born in Hoornaar about four miles north of Gorcum. He was a Franciscan missionpreacher.
(statuette of St. Nicholas)

X
Francois De Roye (or Van Rooy), the youngest of the ordained Franciscans. He was born of a well-to-dofamily around 1549 in Brussels, where he studied theology. He was ordained priest in about 1570. (He was in hisearly twenties.) The fact that he was a native of Brussels explains why he has a special place on one of the ends ofthe reliquary/flanked by St Michael, Patron Saint of Brussels, and St.Nicholas, Patron Saint of this church.
(statuette of St. Michael)

XI
Peter of Assche, (surname probably Van Der Slagmolen), born about 1530 in Asse near Brussels. He was aFranciscan brother who took part in the everyday tasks of running the monastery. (Aged about 42)

XII
Cornells of Wijk, born in about 1548 in Wijk near Duurstede. He was a Franciscan brother.(Aged about 24)

One Dominican:
XIII
Father Jan or Jan Van Keulea He was, it is thought, from Cologne (Koln) and was the parish priest of thevillage of Hoornaar, about four miles north of Gorcum.

Two Premonstratensians (Norbertines or White Canons):
XIV
Jacques Lacops, born in Oudenaarde in about 1541. He was a Norbertine Canon from Middelberg Abbey.In 1566, when over four hundred Roman Catholic churches were ransacked by the sea-beggars, he stoppedpreaching the Roman faith. (Sea-beggars, known as "gueux" in French and "watergueuzen" in Dutch, werefreebooters who had taken to fighting on the side of the Protestant militants.) In 1567 he returned to Catholicismand moved to Marienwaard. In about 1569, he was put in the care of his fellow Norbertine, Adriaan, who was tobecome parish priest of Monster.

XV
Adriaan of Hilvarenbeeck, born in Hilvarenbeek between 1528 and 1532. He was a Norbertine canonf rom the monastery at Witheren near Middelburg (on the coast, mid-way between Ostend and The Hague). In about1560 he became parish priest of Aagtekerke. In 1572 he was nominated parish priest of Monster. He was in hisforties.
One Augustinian:
XVI
Jan (Lenaerts) Van Oosterwijk, born in about 1504 in Oosterwijk (now Oisterwijk, a few miles south-westof VHertogenbosch). He was an Augustinian Canon and for many years bursar or steward of the monastery of TeRugge near Brielle. Towards the end of his life he was put in charge of the convent of beguines in Gorcum. He wasnearlv seventv.
Four diocesan priests:

XVII
Govaert Van Duynen was born in Gorcum around 1502. Before taking holy orders he studied theology in Paris. He worked for a number of years as parish priest in a town in the north of France, but in about 1544 hesuffered some sort of mental disturbance which reduced him to simple-mindedness. He subsequently took up asmall.benefice in Gorcum. He was in his seventies at the time of his martyrdom.

XVIII
Andries Wouters, born in about 1542. He was the parish priest of Heinenoord (about nine miles west ofDordrecht). His lifestyle was, apparently, far from exemplary. (Aged about 30)

XIX
Nicolaas Janssen, born in 1532 and nicknamed "Poppel" after his native village, which is not far fromWeelde, near Antwerp. He studied at the University of Louvain between 1553 and 1558 (probably reading liberalarts and theology). Ordained as a diocesan priest, he was sent to Gorcum in 1558 to help Lenaert Veghel. He was 30in 1572.
(statuette of St. Francis Van Outers)
( " The Blessed Virgin Mary)
" St.Boniface of Brussels, 1181-1260: relics at the Abbaye de la Cambre, Brussels)
XX
Lenaert Veghel or Vechel, born in 1527 at 's-Hertogenbosch. Between 1543 and 1556 he read liberal artsand theology at the University of Louvain. He was ordained a diocesan priest, and in 1556 was nominated parishpriest of Gorcum. He was a sensitive, anxious man. On 8th July 1572 he should have been taking a higher degree intheology...... At the time of his death he was 45.
Their Trials
(Above the statuettes, on the roof of the reliquary, are six scenes depicting the main events of the martyrdom. They start on the main nave side of the reliquary, altar end, and go anti-clockwise.)
On the night of 26th/27th June 1572, the town of Gorcum (Gorinchem) was besieged by the sea-beggars. They had thirteen boats and about one hundred and fifty men. They took prisoner the three diocesan priests, the Augustinian Canon and the eleven Franciscans who had sought refuge in the Blue Tower. Poppel Janssen was hanged by the neck from the church door with a Franciscan cincture (waist-cord), then Jet down alive. The Guardian of the Franciscans was also strung up, but the rope broke and he was brought round with a candle-flame (1st scene).

For eight days they were mocked and ill-treated, then on Sunday 6th July they were taken by boat to Brielle (2nd scene) where they were thrown into the thieves dungeon with Jan Van Keulen (parish priest of Hoomaar), to join another diocesan priest (Andries Wouters) and two premonstratensians already held captive there.

On Tuesday 8th July the prisoners appeared before Count Lumey van der Marck. The Franciscan Guardian and Lenaert Veghel, (the Parish Priest of Gorcum), upheld the authority of the Pope, whilst the two White Canons defended the Eucharist (3rd scene).

On 9th July 1572, at one o'clock in the morning, they were hanged for their adherence to the authority of the Pope and their faith in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist (4th scene).

The Gorcum Martyrs were beatified by Pope Clement X on 14th November 1675 (5th scene) and canonized by Pope Pius IX on 29th June 1867 (6th scene).
Their Feast is celebrated each year on 9th July, the day of their martyrdom.
History of their Relics and the Reliquary
The bodies of the martyrs - who had met with their deaths in a peat barn just outside the town of Brielle -were disposed of with a minimum of effort. The Gueux dug ditches underneath the beams from which the martyrs had been hanged, so that when the victims were cut down, they fell straight into these makeshift graves. It was only in 1615 that some Catholics dared to dig up the bones and take them to the Belgian provinces, which were considered a safer resting place. For a short period the relics were kept in the collegiate church of St. Gudula/Gudule (now the Cathedral Church of St.Michael and St.Gudula), Brussels, but on 18th June 1618 they were solemnly transferred to the convent of the "Re"collets" (Grey Friars), a branch of the Franciscan Order. This convent stood opposite.our church, but it was closed in 1796 by order of the French occupying forces, then demolished, and the Butter Market was built on the site. Less than a hundred years later it too was demolished (in about 1868) to make way for the new boulevard and the Stock Exchange (Bourse). The relics were put in the care of our church, St.Nicholas-by-the-Bourse, and are preserved in a gilded reliquary dating from 1870, the work of HoIIner, a native of Kempen am Rhein in Germany. On the wall facing the reliquary is a painting which depicts the martyrs' last supper

Passionist seminarians- oh dear!

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Austrian female "bishop" with two German colleagues

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Seem to think they can just keep on consecrating Bishops. Four new ones here in the US.

Hate to disappoint but this is not the future for the Catholic Church.

Feast of Our Lady of Holy Hope, Patroness of this blog

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And of the Passionist Order!

"Individual salvation - great Western heresy"

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According to the head of the Anglicans in the US- or at least some part of the divided, disolving body.

Must be the time of year, women "bishops" on both sides of the Atlantic going off the rails simultaneously.

Feast of St John Cardinal Fisher and St Thomas More

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The finest and most learned of all Englishmen.



The Holy Martyrs of Gorcum

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Putting faces to the names of the martyrs

Pope praised by Germany's Obama, the Head of the German Greens

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Imagine Cathcon's surprise when he attended the annual reception of the German think tanks in Brussels last night and heard Cem Özdemir, the Head of the German Greens, praise the Pope. Mr Özdemir as he is a proud Schwabian but with a Turkish background is known as the German Obama. Yes, we Cem is the phrase used. The charismatic figure is set to do very well in the forthcoming national elections, despite supporting Turkish teaching in German schools. He is by no means the only person with a Turkish/ Muslim background to be active in the Green Party.

The reason- the Pope has become an eco-warrier in his latest Encyclical (see end of Chapter IV below). The Pope makes it clear that the imperative to protect the environment is because it is the creation which has been given by God, a justification which one will have to wait for from Mr Özdemir. Doubtless, Mr Özdemir will also approve of the solar panels on the roof of the Vatican- the Greens have to do a lot more to redeem themselves, as they are the most anti-clerical and anti-church party in Germany.

48. Today the subject of development is also closely related to the duties arising from our relationship to the natural environment. The environment is God's gift to everyone, and in our use of it we have a responsibility towards the poor, towards future generations and towards humanity as a whole. When nature, including the human being, is viewed as the result of mere chance or evolutionary determinism, our sense of responsibility wanes. In nature, the believer recognizes the wonderful result of God's creative activity, which we may use responsibly to satisfy our legitimate needs, material or otherwise, while respecting the intrinsic balance of creation. If this vision is lost, we end up either considering nature an untouchable taboo or, on the contrary, abusing it. Neither attitude is consonant with the Christian vision of nature as the fruit of God's creation.

Nature expresses a design of love and truth. It is prior to us, and it has been given to us by God as the setting for our life. Nature speaks to us of the Creator (cf. Rom 1:20) and his love for humanity. It is destined to be “recapitulated” in Christ at the end of time (cf. Eph 1:9-10; Col 1:19-20). Thus it too is a “vocation”. Nature is at our disposal not as “a heap of scattered refuse”, but as a gift of the Creator who has given it an inbuilt order, enabling man to draw from it the principles needed in order “to till it and keep it” (Gen 2:15). But it should also be stressed that it is contrary to authentic development to view nature as something more important than the human person. This position leads to attitudes of neo-paganism or a new pantheism — human salvation cannot come from nature alone, understood in a purely naturalistic sense. This having been said, it is also necessary to reject the opposite position, which aims at total technical dominion over nature, because the natural environment is more than raw material to be manipulated at our pleasure; it is a wondrous work of the Creator containing a “grammar” which sets forth ends and criteria for its wise use, not its reckless exploitation. Today much harm is done to development precisely as a result of these distorted notions. Reducing nature merely to a collection of contingent data ends up doing violence to the environment and even encouraging activity that fails to respect human nature itself. Our nature, constituted not only by matter but also by spirit, and as such, endowed with transcendent meaning and aspirations, is also normative for culture. Human beings interpret and shape the natural environment through culture, which in turn is given direction by the responsible use of freedom, in accordance with the dictates of the moral law. Consequently, projects for integral human development cannot ignore coming generations, but need to be marked by solidarity and inter-generational justice, while taking into account a variety of contexts: ecological, juridical, economic, political and cultural.

49. Questions linked to the care and preservation of the environment today need to give due consideration to the energy problem. The fact that some States, power groups and companies hoard non-renewable energy resources represents a grave obstacle to development in poor countries. Those countries lack the economic means either to gain access to existing sources of non-renewable energy or to finance research into new alternatives. The stockpiling of natural resources, which in many cases are found in the poor countries themselves, gives rise to exploitation and frequent conflicts between and within nations. These conflicts are often fought on the soil of those same countries, with a heavy toll of death, destruction and further decay. The international community has an urgent duty to find institutional means of regulating the exploitation of non-renewable resources, involving poor countries in the process, in order to plan together for the future.

On this front too, there is a pressing moral need for renewed solidarity, especially in relationships between developing countries and those that are highly industrialized. The technologically advanced societies can and must lower their domestic energy consumption, either through an evolution in manufacturing methods or through greater ecological sensitivity among their citizens. It should be added that at present it is possible to achieve improved energy efficiency while at the same time encouraging research into alternative forms of energy. What is also needed, though, is a worldwide redistribution of energy resources, so that countries lacking those resources can have access to them. The fate of those countries cannot be left in the hands of whoever is first to claim the spoils, or whoever is able to prevail over the rest. Here we are dealing with major issues; if they are to be faced adequately, then everyone must responsibly recognize the impact they will have on future generations, particularly on the many young people in the poorer nations, who “ask to assume their active part in the construction of a better world”.


50. This responsibility is a global one, for it is concerned not just with energy but with the whole of creation, which must not be bequeathed to future generations depleted of its resources. Human beings legitimately exercise a responsible stewardship over nature, in order to protect it, to enjoy its fruits and to cultivate it in new ways, with the assistance of advanced technologies, so that it can worthily accommodate and feed the world's population. On this earth there is room for everyone: here the entire human family must find the resources to live with dignity, through the help of nature itself — God's gift to his children — and through hard work and creativity. At the same time we must recognize our grave duty to hand the earth on to future generations in such a condition that they too can worthily inhabit it and continue to cultivate it. This means being committed to making joint decisions “after pondering responsibly the road to be taken, decisions aimed at strengthening that covenant between human beings and the environment, which should mirror the creative love of God, from whom we come and towards whom we are journeying.” Let us hope that the international community and individual governments will succeed in countering harmful ways of treating the environment. It is likewise incumbent upon the competent authorities to make every effort to ensure that the economic and social costs of using up shared environmental resources are recognized with transparency and fully borne by those who incur them, not by other peoples or future generations: the protection of the environment, of resources and of the climate obliges all international leaders to act jointly and to show a readiness to work in good faith, respecting the law and promoting solidarity with the weakest regions of the planet. One of the greatest challenges facing the economy is to achieve the most efficient use — not abuse — of natural resources, based on a realization that the notion of “efficiency” is not value-free.

51. The way humanity treats the environment influences the way it treats itself, and vice versa. This invites contemporary society to a serious review of its life-style, which, in many parts of the world, is prone to hedonism and consumerism, regardless of their harmful consequences. What is needed is an effective shift in mentality which can lead to the adoption of new life-styles “in which the quest for truth, beauty, goodness and communion with others for the sake of common growth are the factors which determine consumer choices, savings and investments.” Every violation of solidarity and civic friendship harms the environment, just as environmental deterioration in turn upsets relations in society. Nature, especially in our time, is so integrated into the dynamics of society and culture that by now it hardly constitutes an independent variable. Desertification and the decline in productivity in some agricultural areas are also the result of impoverishment and underdevelopment among their inhabitants. When incentives are offered for their economic and cultural development, nature itself is protected. Moreover, how many natural resources are squandered by wars! Peace in and among peoples would also provide greater protection for nature. The hoarding of resources, especially water, can generate serious conflicts among the peoples involved. Peaceful agreement about the use of resources can protect nature and, at the same time, the well-being of the societies concerned.

The Church has a responsibility towards creation and she must assert this responsibility in the public sphere. In so doing, she must defend not only earth, water and air as gifts of creation that belong to everyone. She must above all protect mankind from self-destruction. There is need for what might be called a human ecology, correctly understood. The deterioration of nature is in fact closely connected to the culture that shapes human coexistence: when “human ecology” is respected within society, environmental ecology also benefits. Just as human virtues are interrelated, such that the weakening of one places others at risk, so the ecological system is based on respect for a plan that affects both the health of society and its good relationship with nature.

In order to protect nature, it is not enough to intervene with economic incentives or deterrents; not even an apposite education is sufficient. These are important steps, but the decisive issue is the overall moral tenor of society. If there is a lack of respect for the right to life and to a natural death, if human conception, gestation and birth are made artificial, if human embryos are sacrificed to research, the conscience of society ends up losing the concept of human ecology and, along with it, that of environmental ecology. It is contradictory to insist that future generations respect the natural environment when our educational systems and laws do not help them to respect themselves. The book of nature is one and indivisible: it takes in not only the environment but also life, sexuality, marriage, the family, social relations: in a word, integral human development. Our duties towards the environment are linked to our duties towards the human person, considered in himself and in relation to others. It would be wrong to uphold one set of duties while trampling on the other. Herein lies a grave contradiction in our mentality and practice today: one which demeans the person, disrupts the environment and damages society.

52. Truth, and the love which it reveals, cannot be produced: they can only be received as a gift. Their ultimate source is not, and cannot be, mankind, but only God, who is himself Truth and Love. This principle is extremely important for society and for development, since neither can be a purely human product; the vocation to development on the part of individuals and peoples is not based simply on human choice, but is an intrinsic part of a plan that is prior to us and constitutes for all of us a duty to be freely accepted. That which is prior to us and constitutes us — subsistent Love and Truth — shows us what goodness is, and in what our true happiness consists. It shows us the road to true development.


Interview with female bishop who stole Communion

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When she was made a priestess she also received allegedly and secret episcopal orders. She claims apostolic succession! Won't give the name of the consecrating bishop (just one). She admits to breaching canon law. A process for more justice for women.

She does funerals and weddings and other sacraments.

Have you contact with other priests in Upper Austria- a good basis for discussion with colleagues and work constructively together.

She does not want to say more about the problems Bishop Schwarz had with the incident.

With Bishop Schwarz she has a good relationship!

Part of "Roman Catholic Women Priests Worldwide"

I speak only for women.

Different churches should go hand and hand in the 21st century. Diverse churches meet the different paths that human beings take to God.

Notes and quick paraphrasing of the interview!

The Canadian PM has also taken to stealing hosts.

Msgr Perl and Ecclesia Dei

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From Inside the Vatican

Excommunicated Female "Bishop" seizes Communion

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In haste, late at night from the Upper Austrian News.

The Sunday worship celebration in the Parish of St. Peter in Linz did not make the excommunicated "Bishop" Christine Mayr-Lumetzberger as happy as she would have wished. Bishop Ludwig Schwarz refused her communion with the Host. Then she took the wafer herself.

400 people joined the celebration of Mass in the Parish of St. Peter on 28June.. It was held in honour of the church's patron, St. Peter. Among them, high-ranking politicians. But few noticed what happened during the Communion.

Christine Mayr-Lumetzberger was dressed as a Bishop when she appeared at the Mass in official dress with a large pectoral Cross. During the Communion she chose, consciously or unconsciously, the row in which the Diocesan Bishop Ludwig Schwarz distributed communion. The bishop suggested to her that she should not come, because he could not give her Communion. But Mayr-Lumetzberger would not stop. When it came to her, she was not given the Host. According to ecclesiastical law,someone excommunicated may not receive communion.

Mayr-Lumetzberger took the host herself from the ciborium. "I was there for all men and women in a similar situation in life," she says in discussion with OÖN. Is it normal to receive the Host like this? "There are different models of the Communion," she says. What did she feel? "In the first moment, nothing. But now I feel hurt and angry, like a woman who has been beaten for the first time by a man, "says Mayr-Lumetzberger.

Had she expected to receive Communion?" Yes. The Gospel is a higher authority than canon law. "Mayr-Lumetzberger is excommunicated since according to Canon Law ordination of priestesses is prohibited. It had however never happened that she did not receive the Host. The Church of St. Peter is her home parish. "I know Christine a long time. For me, she has never come for Communion. She knows what situation this would put me in "says Parish Priest Franz Zeiger. This Sunday, she came dressed as a Bishop to the Mass.

Do she wish to provoke and did she want to attract attention? "I cannot judge. But dress codes, I cannot enforce on anybody, "says Pastor Zeiger. Did he understand the attitude of Bishop Ludwig Schwarz? "Yes. in canon law he cannot. " Observers had the impression that the situation during the Mass was painful for Bishop Ludwig Schwarz.