Saturday, December 31, 2011

St Sylvester, whose Feast we celebrate today, baptises Constantine


It is time to restore the primacy of the spiritual, which will require a thorough going reform of church and state.   European politician should make a pilgrimage of penance to Rome given their mistakes on economic issues which are going to cause untold suffering to millions and Pope and Bishops should make a pilgrimage of penance to the Palatine Chapel in Aachen in penance for the systematic child abuse and its cover up of the post-war years by the Catholic Church, which was a complete inversion of the moral and religious order.

Only then will Europe be at peace.    And they thought that mere money in the form of the euro would give her prosperity. 

Unless the Lord build the house, they labour in vain that build it. Unless the Lord keep the city, he watcheth in vain that keepeth it.

nisi Dominus aedificaverit domum in vanum laboraverunt qui aedificant eam nisi Dominus custodierit civitatem frustra vigilavit qui custodit

Psalm 127.1

Friday, December 30, 2011

Father Tomas Tyn OP

A fascinating life in service of the Church. If the Church rediscovers Thomistic philosophy, much evil will be repaired.

Much more but in Italian on the same website.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Caption competition for the wierdest Mass


Suggestions anyone?
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We modern pilgrims see no journey's end

The opening and closing of the great modern rendering of the Canterbury Tales by Powell and Pressburger.

There is no journey's end in Canterbury since Henry VIII destroyed the tomb of Becket- the whole history of Henry II and Becket ending in Henry II's public penance must have much troubled his conscience. The empty space where the shrine once stood is the hole at the very heart of England.

An artist's impression of the original

And now the Anglicans organise clog dancing in front of the High Altar behind which the shrine once stood.

At the Altar of the Martydom itself, there used to me a realistic depiction of the murder. Now there is an abstract piece of modern art. Reality is clearly too much for the Anglicans, as it was for King Henry VIII when he tried to destroy the cult of that most glorious of English saints.

Feast of St Thomas Becket- "and prayed to in this Kingdom as a Saint."


The Excommunication Scene

The argument with King Henry was over reserving the punishment of criminal clerics to the Church. Over the last fifty years, the Church has systematically covered up the horrendous crimes of some of her clergy and turned a blind eye to their original commission. What irony!

Greeks and Armenians fight from Grave to Cradle

From the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in November 2008

To the Church of the Holy Nativity in December 2011

They should contract out their cleaning to a third party, as this has not been the first time in either case that fists were flung and brooms were thrown

Bavarian Justice Minister demands change to the statute of limitations for sexual abuse cases

Justiz in Bayern - Ministerium - Pressemitteilung 132/11:

Beate Merk (Bavarian Minister for Justice) demands extension of the statute of limitations for sexual abuse: "protection of victims must not fail due to the statute of limitations!"

At the latest in November everywhere there are warnings: Attention warranty due to expire! Usually, they are claims for damages or about purchase price. Usually only our bank account is threatened. The statute of limitations is quite different in criminal law. Bavarian Justice Minister, Beate Merk: "If a victim of sexual abuse is struggling to bring his tormentors to justice, and then the prosecutor gets the answer" Sorry, unfortunately a case is not possible', then something is wrong in our constitutionally-based state! "

Sexual violence is a crime that places a lifetime burden on the victim. The childhood and youth of the victims are destroyed forever, and even as adults, victims are still suffering from the consequences. A normal reaction is the displacement of many victims. Only long after the deeds are they mentally able to reveal their story of suffering and to see the culprit. Policy objective:.. "We must not accept any longer that the victims suffer throughout their lives, while the perpetrators are in many cases after ten years safe from any prosecution. An assailant who abuses a child sexually commits a heinous crime which should be consistently pursued and punished. If prosecution fails due to the expiration of deadlines, we mock justice ".

Merk therefore reiterates her call for an extension of time limits for prosecuting and punishing sexual abuse of children to at least 30 years. The limitation period should in the opinion of Merk begin with the 21st and not as is now the case with the 18th birthday of the victim.

Incredibly, there is long-term opposition to Beate Merk's proposal.  This article from almost two years ago.

Vorstoß aus Bayern: Missbrauch soll erst nach 30 Jahren verjähren - Nachrichten Politik - Deutschland - WELT ONLINE:

Strong criticism for the proposal came from the Opposition. "A society based on constitutional law is not only punitive but also a forgiving", the  Alliance 90/The Greens spokesman in parliament on legal matters, Jerzy Montag told Welt Online. The current limitation periods are sufficient. Montag called the Merk proposals "absurd": "The policy is not based on Christianity  but on fundamentalist rancour."   (The German left has an entirely discreditable past to conceal on these matters, especially Cohn-Bendit, one of the Green's leaders and now an MEP)

Even in the CDU, Merk's proposal is controversial. "A blanket extension of the limitation period to 30 years is without purpose," said the legal affairs spokesman of the CDU / CSU faction in the Bundestag, Michael Grosse-Brömer to Welt Online. The decisive point is the severity of the offense. Grosse-Brömer argued for, in less serious cases, to raise the statute of limitations from five to ten years. Also, it would make sense to treat sexual abuse of children basically as a "crime" category, with a minimum sentence of one year in prison. So far, sexual abuse of children are classified as "misdemeanors" (Cathcon!!!)

Justice Minister received support from the Deutsche Kinderhilfe. "Especially with sexual offenses against children, the victims sometimes only talk about itecades later," said Chairman George Ehrmann to this newspaper. His association has therefore been calling for some time to extend the limitation period to 30 years.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

14 reasons why nuns should wear the habit

Kronika Novus Ordo: 14 powodów, dla których zakonnice winny nosić habit:

'via Blog this'

Greeks and Armenians slug it out with mops in the Church of the Nativity


Humanae Salutis calling Second Vatican Council published 50 years ago

The rest is a historical catastrophe which has hindered rather than promoted the salvation of which the Pope spoke.

After having listened to Their Eminences the Cardinals, We announce,

We determine and We convene, on the authority of Our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul and our own authority, for the coming year 1962 the second Ecumenical and general Council of the Vatican, which will be held in the Vatican Basilica on the days that the Divine Providence will inspire us to determine.

We also desire and command that at this Ecumenical Council determined by Us, Our Beloved Sons Their Eminences the Cardinals, Our Honourable Brothers the Patriarchs, Primates, Archbishops and Bishops, both resident and titular, from all parts of the world are present and likewise all those of the Church who have the right and the duty to be present at the Ecumenical Council.

Feast of the Holy Innocents


Cardinal criticises EU integration process

Bosnien: Kardinal sieht EU-Integrationsprozess kritisch

The Archbishop of Sarajevo, Cardinal Vinko Puljic has given a critical perspective from the church on the EU integration process in his traditional Christmas reception on Boxing Day. "Up until now, the process of integration has proven to be inadequate," said Puljic. The crisis comes from the fact that the fundamental moral and spiritual values ​​are missing, as these would be the basis for rapprochement between people - and not only the benefits, interests, profits and consumption added the Bosnian cardinal. Generally a recession is spoken of "but it is really a depression," said Puljic. The Cardinal on religious policy in Bosnia-Herzegovina said he had at last year's Christmas reception mentioned the problem of VAT reimbursement which the ecclesiastical institutions are not obtaining. One faced a "crippled state" which could not resolve the problems that affect the freedom and rights of churches and religious communities, solvent. This also concerns the restitution laws and de-nationalization, the law on religious holidays or laws on social security and pension insurance for employees of religious institutions.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Williamson case goes on and on

OLG-Entscheidung im Fall Williamson steht aus - München -

The decision of the Higher Regional Court (OLG) in Nuremberg in the appeal by Holocaust denier Bishop Richard Williamson will be further delayed. The files on the case have in the meantime been transferred from Regensburg to Nuremberg. Currently, the documents are before the competent judge, a court spokeswoman said on Tuesday. They will give a decision but it may take several weeks.

Where the Catholic Faith never died

Read more at the

The Lion & the Cardinal

The Weld and the Weld-Blundells are cousins of the Gillibrands of Gillibrand Hall.   There are five Jesuits in the family- so it is a delight that the chapel is dedicated to St Ignatius.

Church destruction does not stop just because it is Christmas

Les 2 Rives Deux églises sous le pic des démolisseurs

Two churches under the wrecker's ball (no wonder if they promote bingo rather than Mass).

A local church has been demolished and another will follow shortly. The costs of maintenance and renovation of these buildings were too high while the number of believers was in free fall.

First the Church of St. Joseph, St. Joseph-de-Sorel, was demolished last Autumn. The municipality is considering building a community centre on the location.

Moreover, a few weeks before its demolition, arson broke out in the presbytry of the church. The fire had required a major intervention of firefighters in the region and Hydro-Québec had to turn off power to nearly 2000 subscribers so that engineers can operate safely. A nursing home was evacuated.

The Church of St. John of Bosco, in Tracy, will also come under the wrecker's ball in the coming months. The land has been sold to a construction company that has plans to build a new housing development.

Saint John Evangelist and St Edward of England

The Vision of St John on Patmos, whose Feast we celebrate today.

The Golden Legend: The Life of Saint John the Evangelist:

There was a king, a holy confessor and virgin, named Saint Edward, which had a special devotion unto Saint John Evangelist, and it happed that this holy king was at the hallowing of a church dedicate in the honour of God and of this holy apostle; and it was that Saint John in likeness of a pilgrim came to this king and demanded his alms in the name of Saint John, and the king not having his almoner by him, ne his chamberlain, of whom he might have somewhat to give him, took his ring which he bare on his finger and gave it to the pilgrim. 

After these many days, it happened two pilgrims of England for to be in the Holy Land, and Saint John appeared to them and bade them to bear this ring to their king (to left, St Edward with ring with St Edmund beside him) and to greet him well in his name, and to tell him that he gave it to Saint John in likeness of a pilgrim, and that he should make him ready to depart out of this world, for he should not long abide here but come into everlasting bliss, and so vanished from them. And anon as he was gone they had great lust to sleep, and laid them down and slept, and this was in the Holy Land, and when they awoke they looked about them and knew not where they were. And they saw flocks of sheep and shepherds keeping them, to whom they went to know the way, and to demand where they were, and when they asked them they spake English and said that they were in England, in Kent on Barham Down.

And then History they thanked God and Saint John for their good speed, and came to this holy king Saint Edward on Christmas day, and delivered to him the ring and did their errand, whereof the king was abashed, and thanked God and the holy saint that he had warning for to depart. And on the vigil of the Epiphany next after he died and departed holily out of this world, and is buried in the Abbey of Westminster by London where is yet to this day the same ring. (now part of the Crown of England)

Monday, December 26, 2011

Some Christmas fun at the expense of the modernists


Marched the Jesuits up to the top of the hill and marched them down again


There seems to have been some catastrophic event in the early sixties that started the precipitous fall in the number of Jesuits.  Can't think what that would be.

Kronika Novus Ordo: Dlaczego jest tak źle, skoro było tak dobrze?:

St Ignatius could be writing to the Jesuits of today when he wrote

You are much deceived in thinking that the cause of your unrest and little progress in following the way of the Lord comes from the place where you live, or your superiors, or your brethren. This unrest comes from within you, that is, it comes from your own lack of humility, obedience, and prayer, and finally from a want of mortification and fervor in advancing in the way of perfection. You could have a change in residence, of superiors, and of brethren, but if the interior man is not changed these other changes will do you no good. Everywhere will be the same for you, unless you become humble, obedient, devout, and you mortify your self-love. This is the change you should seek and no other.

The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church


And now, O worshipful judges, go on with your show of justice, and, believe me, you will be juster and juster still in the opinion of the people, the oftener you make them a sacrifice of Christians. Crucify, torture, condemn, grind us all to powder if you can ; your injustice is an illustrious proof of our innocence, and for the proof of this it is that God permits us to suffer; and by your late condemnation of a Christian woman to the lust of a pander, rather than the rage of a lion, you notoriously confess that such a pollution is more abhorred by a Christian than all the torments and deaths you can heap upon her. But do your worst, and rack your inventions for tortures for Christians—it is all to no purpose; you do but attract the world, and make it fall the more in love with our religion; the more you mow us down, the thicker we rise; the Christian blood you spill is like the seed you sow, it springs from the earth again, and fructifies the more.

Feast of St Stephen-Proto-Martyr


For many years St Stephen, the first Martyr, has been the accepted Patron of all those who serve at the Altar. All who are privileged to assist the priest during Holy Mass, and at the other sacred ceremonies of the Church, will be anxious to learn all they can about their great Patron Saint, and to ask his guid­ance, his intercession, and his blessing.

The story of St Stephen is a very simple one, as is the story of all God's saints. We need not try to improve upon the account of St Stephen's life -which has already been written by a divinely inspired pen in the Acts of the Apostles. It is there that we meet our Patron and read of his life and works. He was one of the very first followers of Our Divine Lord, and we find him in the company of the Apostles after Our Lord had ascended into heaven. The Apostles were his best friends, and he loved to help them in their task of spreading the Faith among the people. He was a young man and full of love for his great work. He considered it the greatest of privileges to work for the cause of Christ, and he felt that he could best do this by assisting the Apostles who were the first priests of Christ's Church. So he helped them in every way. Nothing was too tiring or too hard for him. He went around among the people, helping, consoling, and encouraging them, because in those early days it was so terribly hard to be a Christian. So gentle and sympathetic and so full of kindness was our Patron, particularly towards the poor, that he was loved and admired by everyone. He loved God above everything else, and the Spirit of God filled him through and through.

Now, as the Church grew with miraculous rapidity the Apostles were being worked to death. Just imagine twelve men trying to look after thousands upon thousands of people, giving them instructions, attending the sick, offering Holy Mass, feeding the hungry, finding lodging for those who were homeless because of the Faith they had embraced—just twelve Apostles striving to do all this and all the time in constant danger from the enemies of Christ. Can you wonder that the Apostles found it impossible to cope with all of it and that some of the social work was being neglected ?

The Seven Deacons
We cannot be surprised to find that after some time the work became too much for this little band of Apostles and soon all sorts of troubles started. Some of the people began to complain that they were not being properly cared for and that they were not getting their share of food which was daily distributed among the needy. Some of these people had given up every­thing to become Christians and they complained that they simply could not starve. Well, all these and many other diffi­culties increased daily. Things became gradually " out of hand ", as we would say. So one day St Peter, who was Head of the Church, called a meeting of the Apostles and between them they talked the whole matter over. When they had come to a definite conclusion they called a general meeting of all the Christians of Jerusalem and explained to them what they were going to do to ease the situation. They called upon the people to elect from among them seven men of good reputation to help in the work so that the Apostles themselves might have more time to carry out their sacred mission of teaching all nations. So seven men were solemnly elected, and from what you have already heard about him, you will not be surprised to learn that the very first of these was St Stephen, whom every­one knew to be " full of Faith and the Holy Ghost." The Apostles there and then laid hands upon these seven men and ordained them to be seven Deacons of the Church.

Stephen's Enemies Alarmed
Now, filled even more by the grace given him, Stephen set to work to carry out his task with the greatest zeal possible, with the result that a great many more people were received into the Faith and even a " large number of priests " of the Jewish religion became Christians. The Holy Spirit of God was indeed with St Stephen and through him worked many great miracles in the presence of all the people. So many converts came eagerly forward to embrace the teaching of Christ that Stephen's enemies became really alarmed, and began to think of devices to stop him preaching. First of all they arranged debates and discussions between Stephen and the learned men of the Jewish religion, thereby hoping to shake the people's confidence in him. But in this they failed, for the Wisdom of the Holy Ghost was with every word that Stephen spoke, and he always completely turned the tables upon his enemies. Indeed, every discussion served only to make the people have even more trust and confidence in St Stephen. Matters went from bad to worse for St Stephen's enemies. They realised that sooner or later they must do something to put an end both to him and his preaching. They plotted together how best to destroy him. They knew that they would have to use every possible care in doing this, because the people loved St Stephen so much that there might very easily be serious trouble and that in the end Stephen might escape.

Methods to trap St Stephen
Now St Stephen, like his Divine Master, always spoke openly to the people and never flinched from his duty. He always gave a clear proof for everything he said so that all could see the truth of his statements. How then were his enemies to trap him ? In the previous year they had managed to seize and put to death Jesus of Nazareth. The means they had used then would have to be used again. So they decided upon the vilest and lowest methods to trap Stephen. They employed some rough men and paid them to go about saying every wicked thing possible against St Stephen, saying that he spoke blas­phemous and sinful words against God and against the Temple. This terrible campaign of evil report against St Stephen went on for a long time until at least some of the evil effect had been caused. Then, one morning when Stephen was preaching as usual to a great crowd of people, a number of paid men began to create trouble and considerable disorder among the assembled people. In the midst of all the noise, someone slipped away and reported to the military authorities, who at once sent a guard of soldiers to put things in order and to arrest the culprits. But they arrested only St Stephen, not the men who had created the trouble, and led him away to the Council to be tried.

Now this Council, before whom our Saint now stood, was the very same Council of Jews which had tried and condemned to death, just a year before, Our Divine Lord Himself. We can imagine, therefore, how anxious this Council would be to condemn any follower of Our Lord to death. Nevertheless, in order to give some sort of semblance of justice, a trial must be gone through. The witnesses against Stephen were called and we can imagine how well those paid men came forward, deter­mined to earn to the full the money they had been promised. So the whole Court heard again those insidious lies which had already been spread among the people. Among those in the Court that day was Saul of Tarsus, who had come to Jerusalem especially to seek out and destroy the Christians of Jerusalem. In the midst of all these bitter enemies stood St Stephen, listening intently to all that was said against him.

When the witnesses had finished their evil work, the President of the Council called upon Stephen to defend himself against the charges that had been levelled against him. Now what did Stephen say ? Did he defend himself ? Did he show to every­one that all the witnesses had lied against him ? No, he did not utter one word in his own defence. Instead, he was anxious to instruct and correct the ways of those who were present in the Court. With his great knowledge of Sacred Scripture, he drew for them a picture of the whole history of the Jewish race, and told his audience that history proved that they had gone con­tinually against the Holy Will of God, and that they had even persecuted and put to death the Prophets and Teachers whom God had sent to them. Finally, Almighty God in His infinite goodness had sent to them Jesus Christ, His only Son, and how had they treated Him ? They had turned against Him and finally they had had Him condemned and put to a terrible death upon the Cross. St Stephen then told them that they had done all this because they were filled with false pride and were a stiff-necked people, not humble enough to perceive the great goodness of God and God's loving kindness towards them. They had rejected Jesus the Saviour of the World !

Riot and Shouting
Now we can imagine the effect of these words on the assembly, especially on the Council who themselves had condemned Christ to death. The burning words of St Stephen seared their hearts. They were filled with a terrible hatred and rage, and began to shout and rave, and all the assembly joined in shouting and demanding " Death to Stephen." Can you imagine the scene with all this riot and shouting going on, and our young Patron standing very quietly iri the midst of it, with his eyes raised towards heaven and his thoughts upon God ?

Presently, those who were watching him saw his face light up with great radiance as he gazed intensely towards heaven, and suddenly, above all the noise of the rabble, St Stephen's voice rang out clear and loud in the Court. There was great joy and triumph in his voice. " I see the Heavens open," he cried, " and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God ! " This sudden cry brought a hush upon everyone, and for a moment there was silence. Then, with greater fury and hatred than ever, Stephen's enemies began to rave at him. They gnashed their teeth, and rent their garments, while others put their fingers into their ears, lest they should hear anything more that he would say. Their pride and hatred blinded them from seeing the great grace of God that was working among them. Those who turned to look at him, however, were overcome, for his face was shining " as it were the face of an angel." But the verdict of the Court had already been fixed, even before the trial began, and now everyone in the Court, including Saul, knew that the end was very near for Stephen. A messenger was dispatched to the Roman Governor asking for the death warrant. This was quickly done and the document of death was signed in a few minutes. Stephen, however, still stood unmoved in the Court, completely absorbed in the vision which God had given to him. Soon he was roughly seized, and a great crowd of struggling people followed the soldiers to the place of execution.

The Place of Stoning
The procession did not go to Calvary, as it did on the first Good Friday, but to the Jewish place of execution which was also outside the walls of Jerusalem. This was called the place of stoning. At length, the weary procession arrived and pre­parations were made for putting Stephen to death by stoning. The executioners stripped themselves to the waist and Saul, who had come along to see the death of the young man, held the coats of the executioners. Stephen stood alone in an open space just a short distance from those who were to kill him. The crowd gathered round to witness the terrible business, and some even to urge the. executioners and encourage them in their task. And so the first stones were hurled with brute force at Stephen, and presently his poor face and body were battered, bruised, and bleeding. Still he stood with his eyes fixed firmly on heaven, and all the while his lips moved, as he prayed fervently. Presently, there was a stir of interest in the crowd. They saw that he would soon fall, and, even as they watched, they saw him sink slowly down upon his knees. The executioners with a cry of triumph increased the savagery of their attacks, and the rough stones tore their way into the already mutilated body of Stephen.

Death, however, was not far off—the glorious death of Christ's first Martyr. He was to die like Christ, even as he had followed throughout life the " perfect" way taught by Christ. While Stephen was still upon his knees he suddenly amazed the onlookers by uttering a great cry. It was a cry for mercy . . . but not for himself, for even as Christ had asked for mercy for those who were cruelly nailing Him to the Cross, so now the whole heart of Stephen cried out, " Lord, lay not this sin to their charge ! " AH who heard this remarkable cry were astonished that one so weak and so near to death could possibly make so beautiful an appeal in such a powerful voice. But the executioners were not moved by any such sentiments, rather were they provoked to further violence, and in a short while they saw that Stephen's strength even to kneel was failing, and presently he sank to the ground. Never­theless his lips continued to move in prayer. His voice they would hear once more before the silence and peace of death would finally and gently close his lips. They heard their victim with his last breath meekly beg the Sweet Master, whom he so greatly loved, to allow him to join Him in the Eternal Kingdom. " Lord Jesus," he prayed, " receive my spirit."

So, peacefully and gloriously, he fell asleep in the Lord, and his sacred bloodstream flowed to mingle with the Precious Blood of Christ to intercede eternally before God's throne for the souls of mankind.

The Conversion of St Paul
Saul, who had watched to the bitter end, turned away, but, though the scene of Martyrdom could be left behind, the prayer of St Stephen accompanied him and burned into his soul. That prayer, as the Fathers of the Church tell us, wrought the miracle of grace in the soul of Saul, a grace that changed both his name and his way of life. For he became the great St Paul, the Apostle of the Gentiles, who, after a life consecrated and dedicated to the work of Christ, shared the glory of Stephen, and like him was crowned with the undying diadem of Martyrdom. Then, when all was quiet, and the crowds had dispersed, some noble Christian people came and removed the body of St Stephen and placed it in a special tomb over which they erected a great monument. So, even like Christ's, the very tomb of Stephen was a glorious one. Later, during times of persecution, for fear of desecration, the body of our Saint was removed and buried in a secret place, so secret indeed that later on all traces of it were forgotten.But God, in His goodness, did not allow the body of His first Martyr to be desolate and forgotten. The grace of God came to some holy people some centuries later, and they were told the exact spot where they would find the remains of St Stephen. They set out at once to find the place, and after a long search they found it and, amid the devotion of great multi­tudes, the body of the first Martyr was removed to a glorious resting place. Later on a beautiful church was erected on the spot where St Stephen was stoned to death and, in the year 444, his sacred relics were solemnly placed there. Many great miracles accompanied the discovery and the translation of the saint's relics, and a special feast-day was instituted by the Church to commemorate the Finding of St Stephen. This second feast is kept on August 3rd every year.

The Feast of Martyrdom is kept on December 26th, which in Catholic countries is always known as St Stephen's Day.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Christmas!

Our Lady Queen and Mother and the Infant King venerated at Maria Plain, Salzburg, Austria.

Mother of the Divine Shepherd.

Born in Bethlehem. A card produced by the Franciscan Custody of the Holy Land. Pray for the safety of the Holy Places!

The Christ Child gives us blessings from the Crib

Jesus sends an imaginary letter, distributed by angels, from the Crib to a Child.

It reads
Heaven, 25 December
"My dear child, each year when I return to earth at the same time, the day of Christmas, so full of joy for others is full of sadness for me.

In reality, how can it be otherwise. I only see everywhere the mockery of the Holy Name of my Father. Many who would otherwise be my friends have for forgotten me and sacrifice the happiness of eternity for the pleasures of one day.

I have done everything that they should come to me. What have I done to offend them?

I came to lead them to my Father who is the Father of all - to teach them his holy law. I have shared their sorrows on earth to promise them that they can partake of the delights of heaven. O, they will never know what I did for them.

But you, at least, my dearest child, who still loves me, promise me that you will persevere on the road of goodness. Try to do what I have done for my Father. If you are ever discouraged, forget not your place in paradise.

He who died for thee, Jesus".

The Holy Family

He who will give Himself to you at Midnight Mass.

From the Martyrology

ANNO a creatióne mundi, quando in princípio Deus creávit cœlum et terram, quínquies millésimo centésimo nonagésimo nono: A dilúvio autem, anno bis millésimo nongentésimo quinquagésimo séptimo: A nativitáte Abrahæ, anno bis millésimo quintodécimo: A Moyse et egréssu pópuli Israël de Ægypto, anno millésimo quingentésimo décimo: Ab unctióne David in Regem, anno millésimo trigésimo secúndo; Hebdómada sexagésima quinta, juxta Daniélis prophetíam: Olympíade centésima nonagésima quarta: Ab urbe Roma cóndita, anno septingentésimo quinquagésimo secúndo: Anno Impérii Octaviáni Augústi quadragésimo secúndo, toto Orbe in pace compósito, sexta mundi ætáte, Jesus Christus ætérnus Deus, æterníque Patris Fílius, mundum volens advéntu suo piíssimo consecráre, de Spíritu Sancto concéptus, novémque post conceptiónem decúrsis ménsibus (Hic vox elevátur, et omnes genua flectunt), in Béthlehem Judæ náscitur ex María Vírgine factus Homo.

IN THE 5199th year of the creation of the world, from the time when in the beginning God created heaven and earth; from the flood, the 2957th year; from the birth of Abraham, the 2015th year; from Moses and the going-out of the people of Israel from Egypt, the 1510th year; from the anointing of David as king, the 1032nd year; in the 65th week according to the prophecy of Daniel; in the 194th Olympiad; from the founding of the city of Rome, the 752nd year; in the 42nd year of the rule of Octavian Augustus, when the whole world was at peace, in the sixth age of the world: Jesus Christ, the eternal God and Son of the eternal Father, desiring to sanctify the world by His most merciful coming, having been conceived by the Holy Ghost, and nine months having passed since His conception (A higher tone of voice is now used, and all kneel) was born in Bethlehem of Juda of the Virgin Mary, having become man.
Hic autem in priori voce dícitur, et in tono passiónis:

NATÍVITAS Dómini nostri Jesu Christi secúndum carnem.

Quod sequitur, legitur in tono Lectiónis consueto; et surgunt omnes.
In the same higher tone of voice and in the tone of the Passion:

THE NATIVITY of our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh.

That which follows is said in the customary tone of the Martyrology, and all arise.
Eódem die natális sanctæ Anastasiæ, quæ, témpore Diocletiáni, primo diram et immítem custódiam a viro suo Publio perpessa est, in qua tamen a Confessore Christi Chrysogono multum consoláta et confortáta fuit; deínde a Floro, Præfecto Illyrici, per diútinam custódiam macerata, ad ultimum, mánibus et pédibus exténsis, ligáta est ad palos, et circa eam ignis accénsus, in quo martyrium consummávit in ínsula Palmária, ad quam una cum ducéntis viris et septuagínta féminis deportáta fuerat, qui variis interfectiónibus martyrium celebrarunt.

The same day, the birthday of St. Anastasia, who, in the time of Diocletian, first suffered a severe and harsh imprisonment on the part of her husband Publius, in which, however, she was much consoled and encouraged by the confessor of Christ, Chrysogonus. Afterwards she was thrown into prison again by order of Florus, prefect of Illyria; and finally, having her hands and feet stretched, she was tied to stakes with a fire kindled about her, in the midst of which she ended her martyrdom on the island of Palmaria, whither she had been brought with two hundred men and seventy women, who have made martyrdom a glorious thing by the various kinds of death they so valiantly endured.

Barcinone, in Hispánia, item natális sancti Petri Nolasci Confessóris, qui Fundator exstitit Ordinis beátæ Maríæ de Mercede redemptiónis captivórum, ac virtúte et miráculis cláruit. Ipsíus autem festum colitur quinto Kaléndas Februarii.

At Barcelona in Spain, St. Peter Nolasco, confessor and founder of the Order of our Lady of Ransom for the Redemption of Captives, renowned for virtue and miracles. His feast is celebrated on the 28th of January.

Romæ, in cœmeterio Aproniáni, sanctæ Eugeniæ Vírginis, beáti Mártyris Philippi fíliæ, quæ, témpore Gallieni Imperatóris, post plurima virtútum insígnia, post sacros Vírginum choros Christo aggregatos, sub Præfecto Urbis Nicetio diu agonizávit, ac novíssime gládio juguláta est.

At Rome, in the cemetery of Apronian, St. Eugenia, virgin, the daughter of blessed Philip, martyr. In the time of Emperor Gallienus, after displaying many signs and virtues, gathering to Christ holy choirs of virgins, and after long trials under Nicetius, prefect of the city, she was finally put to the sword.

Nicomediæ pássio multórum millium Mártyrum, qui cum in Christi Natali ad Dominicum conveníssent, Diocletianus Imperátor jánuas Ecclésiæ claudi jussit, et ignem circumcirca parari, tripodemque cum thure præ fóribus poni, ac præcónem magna voce clamáre ut qui incendium vellent effugere, foras exírent et Jovi thus adolerent; cumque omnes una voce respondíssent se pro Christo libentius mori, incénso igne consumpti sunt, atque ita eo die nasci meruérunt in cælis, quo Christus in terris pro salúte mundi olim nasci dignátus est.

At Nicomedia, many thousand martyrs, who had assembled for divine service on our Lord's Nativity. When Emperor Diocletian ordered the doors of the church to be closed, fire to kindled here and there, a vessel with incense to be put before the entrance, and a man to cry out that those who wished to escape from the fire should come out and burn incense to Jupiter, all with one voice answered that they preferred to die for Christ. They were consumed in the fire, and thus merited to be born in heaven on the day on which Christ vouchsafed to be born on earth for the salvation of the world. Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum.
R. Deo grátias. And elsewhere in divers places, many other holy martyrs, confessors, and holy virgins.
R. Thanks be to God.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Nativity of the Saviour, Sermon 21, Homily 1 by Pope St Leo the Great

Nativity of the Saviour, Sermon 21, Homily 1 by Pope St Leo the Great:

Nativity of the Saviour Sermon 21, Homily I by Pope St Leo the Great
I. All Share in the Joy of Christmas.

Our Saviour, dearly-beloved, was born today: let us be glad. For there is no proper place for sadness, when we keep the birthday of the Life, which destroys the fear of mortality and brings to us the joy of promised eternity.

No one is kept from sharing in this happiness. There is for all one common measure of joy, because as our Lord the destroyer of sin and death finds none free from charge, so is He come to free us all.

Let the saint exult in that he draws near to victory. Let the sinner be glad in that he is invited to pardon. Let the gentile take courage in that he is called to life.

For the Son of God in the fulness of time which the inscrutable depth of the Divine counsel has determined, has taken on him the nature of man, thereby to reconcile it to its Author: in order that the inventor of death, the devil, might be conquered through that (nature) which he had conquered.

And in this conflict undertaken for us, the fight was fought on great and wondrous principles of fairness; for the Almighty Lord enters the lists with His savage foe not in His own majesty but in our humility, opposing him with the same form and the same nature, which shares indeed our mortality, though it is free from all sin.

Truly foreign to this nativity is that which we read of all others, "no one is clean from stain, not even the infant who has lived but one day upon earth[1] ." Nothing therefore of the lust of the flesh has passed into that peerless nativity, nothing of the law of sin has entered.

A royal Virgin of the stem of David is chosen, to be impregnated with the sacred seed and to conceive the Divinely-human offspring in mind first and then in body. And lest in ignorance of the heavenly counsel she should tremble at so strange a result[2] , she learns from converse with the angel that what is to be wrought in her is of the Holy Ghost. Nor does she believe it loss of honour that she is soon to be the Mother of God[3] . For why should she be in despair over the novelty of such conception, to whom the power of the most High has promised to effect it. Her implicit faith is confirmed also by the attestation of a precursory miracle, and Elizabeth receives unexpected fertility: in order that there might be no doubt that He who had given conception to the barren, would give it even to a virgin.

II. The Mystery of the Incarnation is a Fitting Theme for Joy Both to Angels and to Men.

Therefore the Word of God, Himself God,the Son of God who "in the beginning was with God," through whom "all things were made" and "without" whom "was nothing made[4] ," with the purpose of delivering man from eternal death, became man: so bending Himself to take on Him our humility without decrease in His own majesty, that remaining what He was and assuming what He was not, He might unite the true form of a slave to that form in which He is equal to God the Father, and join both natures together by such a compact that the lower should not be swallowed up in its exaltation nor the higher impaired by its new associate.[5]

Without detriment therefore to the properties of either substance which then came together in one person, majesty took on humility, strength weakness, eternity mortality: and for the paying off of the debt, belonging to our condition, inviolable naturewas united with possible nature, and true God and true man were combined to form one Lord, SO that, as suited the needs of our case, one and the same Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, could both die with the one and rise again with the other[6] .

Rightly therefore did the birth of our Salvation impart no corruption to the Virgin's purity, because the bearing of the Truth was the keeping of honour. Such then beloved was the nativity which became the Power of God and the Wisdom of God even Christ, whereby He might be one with us in manhood and surpass us in Godhead.

For unless He were true God, He would not bring us a remedy, unless He were true Man, He would not give us an example. Therefore the exulting angel's song when the Lord was born is this, "Glory to God in the Highest," and their message, "peace on earth to men of good will[7] ." For they see that the heavenly Jerusalem is being built up out of all the nations of the world: and over that indescribable work of the Divine love how ought the humbleness of men to rejoice, when the joy of the lofty angels is so great?

III. Christians Then Must Live Worthily of Christ Their Head.

Let us then, dearly beloved, give thanks to God the Father, through His Son, in the Holy Spirit[8] , Who "for His great mercy, wherewith He has loved us," has had pity on us: and "when we were dead in sins, has quickened us together in Christ[9] ," that we might be in Him a new creation and a new production.

Let us put off then the old man with his deeds: and having obtained a share in the birth of Christ let us renounce the works of the flesh.

Christian, acknowledge thy dignity, and becoming a partner in the Divine nature, refuse to return to the old baseness by degenerate conduct.

Remember the Head and the Body of which thou art a member.

Recollect that thou wert rescued from the power of darkness and brought out into God's light and kingdom.

By the mystery of Baptism thou weft made the temple of the Holy Ghost: do not put such a denizen to flight from thee by base acts, and subject thyself once more to the devil's thraldom: because thy purchase money is the blood of Christ, because He shall judge thee in truth Who ransomed thee in mercy, who with the Father and the Holy Spirit reigns for ever and ever. Amen.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Latvia: Christmas remains banned

Lettland: Orthodoxes Weihnachten kein staatlicher Feiertag:

Latvia: no Orthodox Christmas public holiday

The Orthodox Christmas on 7 January is still not recognized as a national holiday. The Latvian parliament has rejected a request for this from the "Harmony Party". Over the past 20 years, the Parliament had already rejected several similar requests. The "Harmony Party" is particularly committed to the Russian Orthodox minority in Latvia, the membership of about 500,000 people. For the last 150 years, there has been in the country as well as a Russian speaking group also Latvian-speaking Orthodox Christians. They also celebrate on 6 January Christmas Eve and the day after Christmas.

Friday, December 09, 2011

Indulgences for the Reading of Scripture

RORATE CÆLI: A year-long cycle for Lectio Divina according to the Classical Roman liturgy:

A. To the faithful who read the books of Sacred Scripture for at least a quarter of an hour, with the great reverence due to the divine word and after the manner of spiritual reading:
an indulgence of three years is granted.
B. To the faithful who piously read at least some verses of the Gospel and in addition, while kissing the Gospel Book, devoutly recite one of the following invocations: “May our sins be blotted out by virtue of the words of the Gospel,” “May the reading of the Gosepl be our savlation and protection,” “May Christ teach us the words of the Holy Gospel”:
an indulgence of 500 days is granted;
a plenary indulgence is granted, under the usual conditions, to those who daily for a whole month act in the same way indicated above;
a plenary indulgence is granted at the hour of death to those who have often during life performed this pious exercise, as long as, having confessed and received Communion, or at least having sorrow for their sins, they invoke the most holy name of Jesus on their lips, if possible, or at least in their hearts, and accept death from the hand of God as the price of sin.

Post-reform of indulgences- which I no more accept than liturgical reform-the reason why being written plain in the terms of the indulgences.

READING OF SACRED SCRIPTURE. While a partial indulgence is granted to those who read from Sacred Scripture with the veneration which the divine word is due, a PLENARY INDULGENCE is granted to those who read for at least one half an hour.

Dance floor laid in the sanctuary

Reactions Nikolauskirche in Bad Ischl zerstört: Tanzparkett im Presbyterium:

The Church of St. Nicholas in Bad Ischl in the Diocese of Linz has been architecturally destroyed in a renovation . The former people's altar of marble and the choir stalls have been removed. In the new sanctuary, there is a white floor and a white wooden box serves as an altar.

The Church of St. Nicholas was mentioned for the first time in the year 1320. In 1769, the old church was demolished and rebuilt in classical style. In 1870, the church was provided with new frescoes and altars as a result of generous donations .

The laity concelebrate at the altar

The responsible minister in Bad Ischl is Christian Ohler. He is a member of the Priest's Initiative and is a parish priest known for his liturgical experimentation.

On Maundy Thursday 2011, he hosted a " Children's Last Supper "in the parish church, as it says on the website of the parish. Pieces of bread in baskets, wine and grape juice were placed on the altar. It is unclear whether the priest has consecrated at the time the gifts on the altar. Another picture on the parish website showed the pastoral assistant, Manuel Hodel in alb and pseudo stola like a concelebrant in a position of prayer at the altar next to the parish priest.

Dance Floor: The understanding of the Mass as a meal in concrete form.

With the current renovation Father Oehler, together with the parish council, has destroyed the sanctuary. The new white floor is usual at venues for dance and nativity plays. For this next to the church, the newly renovated hall in the parish centre is available.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Monday, December 05, 2011