Friday, November 18, 2005

I Like a Pope Who Is Engaged

And Sandro Magister's latest makes it clear that Pope Benedict has his finger on the pulse of what is going on in the Church.

He administered a well-deserved slap to the Austrian bishops during their Ad Limina visits.

And, faced with rapidly-growing protestant sects in Latin America that threaten the Catholicity of that continent:

The conference was already set for 2007, but the place and the exact date remained to be determined. The four bishops were prepared to hold it in Rome, in order to ensure the pope’s participation in the work.

But Benedict XVI said to them all of a sudden: “It will be held in Brazil,” and immediately asked what the country’s most venerated Marian shrine is. “The Aparecida,” they replied. And the pope: “In Brazil, at the Aparecida, in May. I’ll be there.”

The four cardinals were taken completely by surprise. And so were the leaders of the Roman curia – the pope hadn’t discussed the matter with any of them.

He knows where he is needed.

Pope John Paul Miniseries

Endorsed by the Holy Father, no less.
To be aired on CBS Dec. 4-6.

More On Empty Confessionals

From Slate.

A Great Testament of Faith

Go read this over at Hennessey's View. Please say a prayer for Bill and his family.

God does love us, does hear and answer every prayer. He may not give us the answer we want, or an answer we can even find acceptable. But He does answer.

Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament, Sacramento

A genuine renovation. Sounds very good.

Via The New Liturgical Movement.

St. Hugh's Charterhouse

There has been a fair amount of interest in the Carthusians of late. And The Thirsty Scribepoints us to St. Hugh's Charterhouse in Parkminster, England. The tour is very interesting.

The enclosed cloister

The library

Rear of the Chapter Room

The Refectory

Rood Screen

And there is an excellent description of the charterhouse (from 1953) here.

The Cutting Edge Of the Forces Of Evil In Massachusetts Have Names

Those names are:
Sen. Cynthia S. Creem (D-Newton)
Sen. Robert A. O'Leary (D-Provincetown)
Rep. Michael E. Festa (D-Melrose)
Rep. David P. Linsky (D-Natick)

Notice a pattern? Look closer at the party affiliation. So much for Catholic ancestral loyalties to the Democrat Party, folks. Forget them. This is where the heart of the Democrat Party is, not with Bob Casey's son.

What did they do?

They are the Massachustts Great and General Court's sponsors, Senate and House, for a bill that would reduce penalties for bestiality, and the bill would also amend the Commonwealth's penal code to de-criminalize adultery, fornication and the advertisement of abortion.


You know, I and others have been saying that allowing gay "marriage" would be just the an incremental step on a broader "progressive" agenda to make any sex act not just legal but socially acceptable. I dare not say first step, because that was either the allowance of divorce on much more liberal grounds, or the legalization of contraceptives.

Slippery slopes are real, folks. And if you allow the camel's nose into the tent, the rest of it inevitably follows.

Now the forces of "progress," having secured the murder of countless babies, the destruction of countless marriages, and legally recognized "marriage" for queers, are now out to vindicate the rights of "zoophiles." Further and further down the slope, or is it, more precisely, a sewer, we slide.

So, what's next for decriminalization and social acceptance, necrophilia (people who like to have sex with dead bodies)? Pederasty? Those age of consent laws are so archaic, aren't they?

While Massachusetts may be the testing ground for this sort of vile innovation, you can be sure that it will be there in every other state soon enough.

I don't expect this bill will pass in this session. But these tools of Satan, or others, will bring it back to the floor again. And again. And again. Just as they have done with every socially and morally destructive policy initiative they wish. And when it turns out that the entire Legislature is not crazy enough to enact it, they will turn to the courts. And eventually, they will find the right judge or combination of judges. And voila! There will be a new constitutional right to practice bestiality.

Civilization has collapsed. Society is hopelessly corrupt. It would take ten thousand St. Jean Vianneys to start to set things right. And we don't even have one. Not even one.

Withdrawal? There are no Skellig Michaels today to withdraw to. Modern society is totally invasive, and totally corrupt. You can't jam all TV and radio signals and the internet. And the "progressive" brownshirts won't let us be, even if we could find safe enclaves. They would come for us, with government sanction, to make us conform and root out our "anti-zoophile" prejudices, even in our gated communities and island monasteries.

What are the words of the Psalmist?

The fool says in his heart, "There is no God." They are corrupt. They have done abominable things. There is none who does good. God looks down from Heaven upon men, to see if there is one who is wise and seeks God. All have gone astray together. All are perverted. There is none who does good: not even one.
Psalm 52/53: 1-4.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

The Transalpine Redemptorists

Well, from what I can gather paging through the links and other portions of their website, they are somehow linked to the SSPX. SSPX "Bishop" Fellay seems to spend a fair amount of time with them.

Since they nowhere make it a point to say that they are "in Communion" with Pope Benedict, or that they are established "under legitimate or recognized ecclesiastical authority," I take it that they are not.

That is a pity, because we could really use a traditionalist order devoted to the Holy Souls in Purgatory. And because the idea of rebuilding a ruined Catholic monastery and making it a living traditionalist monastic community is so very cool. Oh well, maybe the FSSP will create a monastic branch of itself someday. Or maybe the SSPX/Vatican dialogue will overcome the self-defeating roadblocks, and the SSPX will be regularized.

Personally, I prefer my traditionalism without the nasty, angry, whiny anti-Church rhetoric, and without the disobedient and schismatic mindset.

If you work intelligently, through the right channels, especially in this age of Pope Benedict XVI, you can have everything: the Latin Mass, the horarium utilizing the Roman Breviary, traditional devotions, traditional churches, vestments, art, even the sacraments according to the traditional formulae.

There is no need to wander to schismatic or semi-schismatic sects. And I have often found the types who gravitate towards this sort of thing about as useful to genuine, responsible, faithful, and obedient traditionalists as the John Birch Society is to the Republican Party.

In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if there were a substantial overlapping membership between these political and religious bastions of irrationality. Nutjobs are nutjobs, and conspiracy kooks in one field of life tend to be so in others.

But one has to admit, these traditionalist schismatics do have an affinity for good traditional Catholic art.

Redemptorist Saints from the Transalpine Redemptorists website.

Thanksgiving A Week Away!!!

How on earth did that happen?

Read my annual week-before-Thanksgiving rant.

L.A. Pervert Priest Data Points To St. John's Seminary

Not Boston's, which also had a few classes (1960 comes to mind) that were pervert-rich.

But L.A.'s in Camarillo.

Cardinal Mahony attended this seminary. Archbishop Levada taught there. Both, in my opinion, warning signs in and of themselves.

Please Remember the Holy Father in Your Prayers

Sore throat.

We don't want to take any chances with a man of his age. We want Pope Benedict around for a long time.

Via St. Peter's Helpers

Anglican Gay Disputes Continue

Schism at the Synod.

Frankly, I don't understand why the seriously Christian Anglicans can't just say, "This institution, the creation of Henry VIII for his own political ends, is no longer truly Christian, but a political tool that bends to the liberal pressure of the moment. As we like, at least, to think that we are Christians, we no longer are affiliated with the so-called Anglican Communion. We have ourselves submitted to the jurisdiction of Our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, and we urge all serious Christians within the Anglican Communion to reconcile themselves to becoming members of the one true Faith."

Best Wishes!

The Martins are expecting their first child! God bless!!!

Saint Elizabeth of Hungary

A brief biography of this virtuous young Catholic princess-turned-nun.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Newly Recognized Lourdes Miracle

Cure of rheumatic fever more than 50 years ago. The lady who was cured then is still alive at age 94 today.

Encouraging News

From the wilds of the Scottish isles.

Catholic Monarchist made a point the other day I meant to add my concurrence to, the need for a traditional monastic order devoted to praying for the souls in Purgatory.

Well, he further reports that the Transalpine Redemptorists are working on the site of Papa Stronsay monastery in the Orkney Islands. This was purchased in 1999, so it is probably only news to me. But they have re-established a Purgatorian Archconfraternity.

Read about this Archconfraternity here.

I saw a few snippets in the website that makes me think that this is a traditional Latin Mass-friendly monastery. In full communion with Pope Benedict XVI? Not sure on that one.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Conservative Anglicans Becoming Roman Catholic...

And liberal Catholics becoming Anglicans, tends to make the Catholic church more tradiitonalist, and the Anglicans more liberal.

Sounds reasonable, except I think the effect on the Anglicans will be much greater than the effect on us, because of the different sizes of the two groups.

Ultimately, serious Christians will end up as Roman Catholics, and those more devoted to the liberal zeitgeist will become protestants of one label or another. All the main-line protestant churches will end up sounding and thinking just like the Universalist/Unitarians. And between that sort of heretical mob and the one true Church of Jesus Christ on earth, the Roman Catholic Church, there can be no common ground. The Catholic Church will find itself making common cause more often on political issues with Orthodox Jews than with the protestant sects.

The Holy Father Is Stylin'

From St. Peter's Helpers.

Medieval Saints Yahoo Group

Not one of the groups I moderate. I just heard about it via fellow League of Evil Traditionalists member The New Crusade, and joined.

Check it out.

While we are on the topic of Yahoo Groups, don't forget Recta Ratio. It is full of recipes for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year, and Twelfth Night, lyrics of Thanksgiving and Christmas songs, prayers for the Advent wreath ceremony, prayers for blessing nativity sets, Christmas trees, seasonal prayers, seasonal poetry and prose aplenty.

I've posted dozens of cookie and candy recipes, the recipes for my superlative Christmas Cake, Mince Pie, and Pumpkin Pie. I was just introduced to a Raspberry Mocha Trifle that I will be adding shortly. Plus, I plan to get my lasagna and meatballs recipe up there (an awful oversight not to have my New Year's Day staple up there!).

And besides that, there are hundreds of images, many never seen here on this blog, to peruse. The prayers section is good, and growing. And the traditional hymn lyrics section is good. The links could stand an updating, though. They are not nearly as good as my blog links.

Recta Ratio is free to join. I keep track of the membership and don't let anyone in who I suspect might be a spammer. And I certainly don't spam anyone. In fact, I don't think I have sent a notice to the membership since June!

Carmelite All Souls

The Carmelite order today commemorates all members of the order who have died. Steve at Flos Carmeli reminds us. Yesterday, I missed the Feast of All Carmelite Saints. John at The Inn At the End of the World did not forget, though.

Here are the prayers and readings for today.

The American Bishops Are Meeting Again

God help us! Every time the bureaucraqcy of the USCCB functions, every time they make some formal pronouncement, every time the American bishops meet, I cringe in horror at the results.

My solution? Make Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz (or Francis, Cardinal George, or Archbishop Chaput, or Archbishop Burke) Prelate of the United States with plenary power, subject only to the Vatican, and abolish the USCCB.

This is the sort of unadulterated crap you get from some individual bishops.

And this is the sort of unadulterated crap you get from bishops in charge of the bureaucracy.

Shawn Tribe at The New Liturgical Movement makes the point that our US bishops are ever ready to push the liturgy in a more liberal direction, or let it be pushed there by others. But if liturgical changes that would reverse some of the "progress" of the last 40 years are suggested, they suddenly become entrenched reactionaries defending the status quo.

Will no one rid us of these weak, heterodox, useless bishops?

Monday, November 14, 2005

Judge Alito

Looking better and better to me.

The Empty Confessional, and the Thronged Communion Line

It is not because lay Catholics are such pure sinless creatures that, while no one goes to confession, EVERYONE goes to Communion. Saint Pope Pius X's vision of frequent Communion, which echoed St. Thomas a Kempis, implied that people frequenting Communion would also be making regular confessions, so that they are not making sacriligious Communions.

This article spells out a lot about what is wrong with the modern indifference towards confession. Confession in most suburban parishes is an hour or 45 minutes every Saturday. And for the most part, the priest is alone in the confessional (or the new-fangled confession room) for almost all of that time.

Now some of that slack is being taken up by downtown shrines, the Carmelites at the North Shore Shopping Center, the Franciscans on Arch Street, the Oblates of the Virgin Mary at the Pru. Those places do have many people who work in the city come to confession there on weekdays. But don't fool yourself. That is not making up for the tens of thousands of people who take the Sacrament every week in suburban parish churches, but go to confession maybe once a year, if that.

It isn't even half of practicing Catholics who are going to confession regularly. In my experience in Boston's suburbs, it isn't even 10%.

My own experience may be relevant. I find confession the hardest thing to do about being Catholic. I went years, sometimes decades, between good confessions. At best, I confessed the less embarrassing things like swearing, or missing Mass, or not properly honoring my father and mother, or having impure thoughts, and let all the rest of my sins lie under the umbrella of the "elastic clause" at the end: "For these and any other sins I may have committed, I ask the Lord's pardon and forgiveness." I was playing lawyer's games with God.

Not good. That prideful reluctance to come to grips with my many sins, to recognize them for what they were, to have contrition for them, to resolve not to do them again, and to beg for pardon for them by name, cost me big time. And even those incomplete confessions came only every 5-6 years, at best.

Why did I not confess properly? I was reluctant to state my sins to a priest, another human being. I did not want to be seen by that priest, even if he had never seen me before, for the vile sinner I really am. Maybe I was so attached to my sins I had no intention of breaking with them, could not even begin to do so. Maybe I just took the path of least resistance, made a pro forma confession, and went on up to Communion with everyone else.

Maybe I should have applied something my parents taught me: if everyone else is jumping off the top of a skyscraper, would I follow?

Now, at terrible psychological cost, I go to confession a few times a year. I make an examination of conscience to the best of my ability, and blurt it all out in the confessional. I stay kneeling in the pew most of the time when everyone else goes up for Communion, and make a spiritual Communion (a concept I had never heard of until 2 years ago). I don't care if people think I'm some sort of protestant experimenting with attending a Catholic Mass.

I make a great effort to make a worthy actual Communion at Christmas and Easter. And I rake up the past, keeping track of newly remembered mortal sins from all those years to be included in the next good confession. And, while my new sins are bad enough, I still come up with old ones, real whoppers, and have to ask myself, "did I ever confess that one?".

So we are better off if we link regular good confession with frequent reception of the Blessed Sacrament. It allows us to come to the root of sinful behaviours before they become ingrained habits.

Bl. Charles de Foucauld

His beatification yesterday.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

So Far, So Good

This weekend's football games that I care about are going nicely. My St. John's Prep Eagles beat BC High 10-7 Saturday.

The Boston College Eagles defeated North Carolina State 30-10 Saturday night.

Now, the Patriots are playing the Miami Dolphins. They are trailing 7-3 in the second quarter, but it is early yet.

Update: Patriots won 23-16, coming from behind in the final minutes of play!

So this has been a perfect football weekend.

Light Blogging This Week

I have put in a lot of effort here since mid-October, and will be going more lightly, I think, until next weekend, when the Thanksgiving posts will start.

I'll be around, so if anything big happens and I want to comment, I'll still be able to blog about it. But unless something big does break, I'll probably only post a few times a day, and might even take a day or two off, which regular readers will know is very light blogging for me.

A Modest Proposal

Why don't we switch Veterans' Day to the last Sunday in May, and Memorial Day to November 11th?

November 11th, the date of the end of World War I, began as an anniversary to remember the fallen heroes of World War I. And Christianity devotes November to recalling the dead, so that it would be very appropriate to have a celebration of the nation's war dead the day after the octave of All Souls.

The May weekend can be a great time to honor our living veterans with parades, speeches, and other honors in the nice weather, and we can save the grave-side memorial services for cold, damp, windy November.

Make sense? Anybody see any major problem with it? Would it detract in any way from either the living veterans, or the dead?

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