Saturday, September 22, 2007

Our Blessed Lady's Saturday

As the month of September is dedicated by Holy Mother the Church to the Sorrows of Our Blessed Lady, so to are the September installments of Our Blessed Lady's Saturday.

O dolorous Mother, take pity upon us who are cast about by the storm of our many sins, extend unto Christ the Lord thy hands that received God. Plead our cause before His goodness, asking pardon of our sins, a devout and peaceful life, a happy Christian end, and a good defence at His dread judgment seat; so that, saved through thy most effective prayers unto Him, we may inherit the bliss of Paradise, and with all the saints sing the glory of the most honourable and majestic name of the Holy Trinity. Amen.


Saturday In the Michaelmas Embertide

Ember Saturday


Friday, September 21, 2007

Friday In the Michaelmas Embertide

Ember Friday.


Friday At the Foot Of the Cross

Note: This prayer will not be to everyone's tastes. It is a prayer for a religious or member of a holy society, like Opus Dei, about to undergo the discipline. But the sentiments in the prayer are worthy and I think you can adapt it to whatever trials you might be undergoing. It is a lovely prayer of embracing suffering and offering it to God. You can leave out the part about kissing the rope.

I do not advocate that anyone begin use of the discipline (or cilice) themselves without thoroughly consulting their confessor and spiritual director. I bracketed, but did not omit, though you may, one paragraph invoking the saints known to have used the discipline.

Penitential Prayer Written by Vincentian Father C.P. Fox

O Just Father, Lord God, Holy and always to be praised, the hour is come for thy servant to be tried. O Father, worthy of all love, it is fitting that I thy servant should at this hour suffer something for Thee. O Father, always to be honoured, the hour is come that thy servant should be slighted and humbled, that he should be afflicted with sufferings, so that he may rise again with thee in the dawning of a new life and be glorified forever in Heaven. O Holy Father, Thou hast so appointed, and such is Thy Will, for this is a favour to thy friend that he should suffer and be afflicted in this world for the love of Thee.

It is good for me, O Lord, that Thou dost now humble me, that I may bear what pleaseth Thee and that I may cast away from me all pride and presumption. It is to my advantage that shame doth now cover my face, that I may wisely seek my comfort from Thee rather than from men.

Thanks be to Thee that Thou dost not spare me in my sufferings but dost now bruise me with bitter stripes, inflicting pains and distress, O Heavenly Physician of souls, who dost wound and heal us, who dost bring us down and then raise us up again. Thy discipline is on me, and Thy rod shall instruct me. Behold, Father, I am in Thy hands. I bow myself under the scourge of Thy correction.

Strike Thou my back and my neck that I may bend my crookedness to Thy Will, that I may walk at Thy beck at all times. To Thee I commit myself and all that is mine to be corrected by Thee. For it is better to be chastised in this world rather than in hell or Purgatory. Do with me then according to Thy good pleasure. This is what I desire. Despise not my sinful life so clearly known to Thee.

O Lord Jesus Christ, as a sign of my desire to be a co-victim with Thee in Thy Sacred Passion, on the Cross and in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, I now kiss devoutly the instrument which is about to cause me pain (now kiss the rope) and this pain in my body I willingly accept in union with Thy Most bitter pains which Thou didst endure for me in Thy Sacred Passion and Death; and this penance of mine I bear entirely on Thy infinite Merits. For in doing it I reject entirely any motives of self-satisfaction or vanity and I wish only to be more like Thee, and to have a deeper and yet always a subordinate share in Thy great redemptive act performed for love of me on Mt. Calvary. Thus my motives in accepting willingly the pain of this scourging, are:

* to make reparation in my own flesh for all my personal sins and for the sins of the whole world.
* for better self conquest and ability to conquer temptations.
* to draw down ever more of Thy graces and blessings on myself and others, on Thy Holy Catholic Church and especially on those who most need these graces and blessings, and including these my special intentions (Pause to name them).

As for my own body, its wicked inclinations have all too often led me into sin against Thee, O Jesus; and so it is only right that this body of mine should now pay with sharp pain for all the sins which it has caused me to commit. Therefore I have deserved nothings but stripes, welts and punishments, because I have greviously and often offended Thee and sinned in many different ways. Indeed, what have I deserved for my sins but hell and everlasting fire? In truth I confess that I am worthy of all scorn and contempt and it is not fitting that I should be named among Thy devout servants, and though it goes against me to hear this, yet for truth's sake I will condemn myself for my sins; and by Thy grace, O Jesus, I will now willingly accept punishment in my body for them.

O Mary, My Heavenly Mother and Model in reparation, though sinless Thyself, Thou didst suffer beneath Thy Divine Son's Cross on Mt. Calvary in reparation for all these sins of mine and for the sins of others. For all these sins help me now to suffer sharp pain in my body.

[O all ye holy Saints of God, who so often scourged thyselves in penance as I am now about to do and whose names I am about to invoke in the following Litany, help me to scourge my body, never from vanity or self gratification, but only from the same sublime motives which led you to do it and thus to have a greater share in Christ's redemptive Passion as you did.]

O My Jesus, I unite this pain of mine, which my sins well deserve, to Thy most bitter torments O Lord, here burn, here cut, but spare me for eternity. My Jesus Mercy! My Jesus Mercy! Mercy my Jesus!


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

First Foliage Report Of Fall

We are starting to see color in the north!


Right On Schedule

Saint Januarius' blood liquified on his feast, as it always does.

It appears to be traditional to have Italian sausage with peppers and onions for his feast (today). So that solves my daily lunch dilemma. Thank heavens McChickens are not what you eat today, since I have had my fill of them this week.


Wednesday In the Michaelmas Embertide

Ember Wednesday has snuck up on us. it is a day of special fasting, abstinence, prayer and almsgiving.


Ahoy, Matey! It Be International Talk Like A Pirate Day!

This here blog lifts a cup o'grog to this up-and-coming holiday.

An instructional video to pick up pirate lingo.

The official website.


Arrrr. That's enough o'that bilge. Avast that seriousness, and open yer gob and let a little Robert Newton out!

Fifteen men on the Dead Man's chest,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the Devil had done for the rest,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

The mate was fixed by the bo'sun's pike
And the bo'sun brained with a marlin-spike,
The cookie's throat was marked belike
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
It had been clutched by fingers ten.
And there they lay, all good dead men,
Like break o' day in a boozin' ken
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

Fifteen men of the whole ship's list,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Dead and bedamned and their souls gone west
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

The skipper lay with his nob in gore
Where the scullion's axe his cheek had shore,
And the scullion he was stabbed four times four
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
And there they lay, and the soggy skies
Rained all night long in upstaring eyes
By murk sunset and by foul sunrise--
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

Fifteen men of 'em stiff and stark,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Ten of the crew bore the murder mark,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

'Twas a cutlass swipe or an ounce of lead,
Or a gaping hole in a battered head,
And the scuppers glut of a rotting red.
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
And there they lay, aye, damn my eyes,
Their lookouts clapped on Paradise,
And souls bound just contrariwise--
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

Fifteen men of 'em good and true,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Every man jack could 'a sailed with Tom Tew
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

There was chest on chest of Spanish gold,
And a ton of plate in the middle hold,
And the cabins riot with loot untold--
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
And there they lay that had took the plum,
With sightless eyes and with lips struck dumb,
While we shared all by rule o' thumb--
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

More was seen through the stern's light screen,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Chartings no doubt where the woman had been,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

A flimsy shift on a bunker cot
With a dirk slit sheer through the bosom spot
And the lace stiff dry in a purplish rot--
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Or was she wench or shuddering maid--
She dared for gold but she took the blade--
(Now it matters not for the price is paid!)
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

Fifteen men on the Dead Man's chest,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the Devil had done for the rest,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

We wrapped 'em all in a mainsail tight,
With twice ten turns of hawser's bight.
And we heaved 'em over and out of sight,
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!
With a yo-heave-ho and a fare-ye-well,
And a sullen plunge in a sullen swell.
Ten fathoms deep on the road to hell--
Yo-Ho-Ho and a bottle of rum!

More pirate music here, me hearties.


What the #%$$@%&^%&#%^$%????????

The Red Sox lead is down to 2.5 games, and the magic number is still 9, after losing 2/3 to the Yankees, and now dropping two straight to the Blue Jays.

Panic buttons are being pushed and heads rolling around in baskets are desired.

The lead was 14.5 games at one point. The team has been mediocre, and far too laid back since the beginning of June. Too much overconfidence and far too little grit needed to actually clinch the divisional title (which should have been clinched weeks ago if the team had played at the same velocity that the Yankees have since the break). Way too much looking ahead to the playoffs. Dice-K has been grossly mishandled (the kid has never pitched this much in a season, and you can tell by looking at him that he is not a horse). Gagne and Drew look like completely poor decisions (the Gagne one understandable only from the perspective of keeping relief help away from the Yankees). Both Ramirez and Ortiz are having decidedly off years (and failing to show much in the way of leadership), but that doesn't excuse the lack of offensive punch. And not keeping in the starting rotation a kid who just threw a no-hitter. It sure looks like we could use Kason Gabbard back.

With they money they spent to make this team a winner, this kind of September folding act is inexcusable. We are looking at something that may be worse than 1978. Even if they make the playoffs, the way they are playing, they will be knocked out in the first round.


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A Vision Very Similar To My Own

I was almost taken aback when I read the Curmedgeon's idea for an ideal trad Catholic community. I have been day-dreaming about the same sort of thing for ten years now. I once even went so far as to draw an elaborate map of what the community would look like.

The difference between my idea and his, and what I have seen elsewhere among the Catholic Restorationists is that their ideas are essentially demotic, while mine is hieretic. Their ideas are based on American village life, while mine is based on feudalism, with me as the ever-so-benevolent despot. In their visions of Catholic community, it is a community that comes together from like-minded people throwing in their share. Mine is top-down, funded from above, run according to my values and tastes. Mine is a hands-on squirehood, living in the community, and determined to maintain what I consider good neighbors.

Now my idea, being centered in New England, would be a little more expensive. In fact, I would probably need to win the largest lottery prize in world history, over $800 million after taxes, and after the deduction for taking the lump sum.

My community would be in New Hampshire, and the layout, more suburban, with 2 acre lots, and the architecture is single-family housing, all Yankee salt-boxes, and Queen Anne. Old New England dry-laid stone walls wander through a thick belt of trees surrounding the community, and sectioning off portions of it. The roads would be named for English and Irish saints. There would be no more than 200 houses, with a very few necessary shops. No visible garages, all cars parked in garages under the houses. Street lighting like Colonial Williamsburg (to which the project would bear quite a resemblance, except for its 17th/18th century Yankee architecture, and larger, more spread-out lots).

The inhabitants would all be Irish (preferably West of Ireland). All would be adherents to what we consider "traditional Catholicism." And all longing to live in a truly Catholic community, sealed off from the corrupting influences of modern secular culture. All would be conservative, and I assume that, once they attain citizenship, voter registration would be 100% Republican.

Rents would be essentially peppercorn rents (bring the squire, me, 100 pounds of flour a year, or 100 pounds of cornmeal, or 100 beeswax candles, or a side of beef, payable on Lady Day, Midsummer Eve, Michaelmas, and Christmas). Each family would owe the squire one day of work per year, which is a lot more lenient than most feudal tenures. That plus each family would have to work their portion of the community's farmland, about 5 acres each, which would be divided between meadow, orchard, and tillage.

I would be the sponsor for all of these immigrants. Only young families. The eldest son would inherit the leasehold, unless I deem him unsuitable to be my tenant.

Behaviour would be held to a fairly strict code: nothing that would raise an eyebrow in Boston in 1890 allowed. No Rap, no loud music at all, no popular culture as we experience it daily. TV not allowed. Modest dress. Respect for elders.

The village church would bear a striking resemblence to St. Patrick's, Patrington, Yorkshire (which has graced my banner before). Very Gothic, both inside and out. Lovely Rood Loft, Gothic pillars with pointed arches and vaulted celings, Gothic reredos with Tabernacle right in the center, Easter Sepulcher, exquisite stained glass, and shrines with candles, Mary Side Chapel, Sacred Heart Side Chapel. The FSSP would staff the church, and there would be, on the outskirts, a traditional monastery, perhaps affiliated with the FSSP. Daily Mass according to the Missal of Bl. John XXIII, along with active public devotional schedules, and an annual parish mission straight out of the 19th century Redemptorist mission manual.

The manor house would be across the street from the church, and sharing the same plateau on top of a hill, grander than the others, but not enormously so. The Elias Haskett Derby House in Salem, MA, same proportions, but larger in size. The grounds for the manor house would include formal gardens, after 17th century French tastes, and brick-wall enclosed gardens devoted to the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts. And there would be a less formal yard area, for informal American-style entertaining and play.

There would be a village common in the center, near the church, churchyard, vicarage, school, and the manor house, plus over a thousand acres of farmland and orchards on the outskirts. There would also be extensive solar panels and windmills located on the outskirts to defray the cost of electrical power, with surplus generation donated back to the larger community for the relief of the poor. Surplus food would likewise be donated to the poor.

There would be statues of Edmund Burke and George Washington, perhaps Fisher Ames and Bishops Chevrus and Fitzpatrick. There would also be a plentitude of Mary Gardens, and a public Way of the Cross

It would be very much a living Catholic community, with the men holding jobs outside the community, for the most part, during the day, and returning with evening for family life (no TVs, remember). There would be an active community life, patterned after the seasonal patterns of New England life, and the liturgical calendar. There would be plentiful parish devotional guilds, perpetual adoration, charitable activities, processions (and I don't just mean taking the Blessed Sacrament for a little walk around the church yard on Corpus Christi).

There would be community sports, like baseball and football, and what we call soccer. Add in church suppers, Plough Monday, Little Christmas, Shrovetide, a very solemn Holy Week, and joyous St. John's Eve festivities, Maying and May Processions, Hock Monday and Tuesday, a real beating of the bounds for Rogationtide, St. George's Day processions, and St. Patrick's Day, too, a good old-fashioned American Fourth of July picnic, concert and stunning fireworks display, plus a Lammas fair, Halloween/Hallowmas festivities and tolling of bells for the dead as well as ringing the liturgical hours, an American Thanksgiving, wassailing and Wren Boys, plenty of Christmas lights and decorations, with candles in each window (perhaps electric) and lots of holly and ivy.

Plus there would be conveniences, like heated sidewalks, roads, and driveways, so that no one has to lift a show shovel or fear a slip on the ice. Everyone can walk to Mass. The houses would be built to the highest standards, with all modern conveniences, and the most comfortable plumbing and heating arrangements possible. All the houses would be large enough to accomodate large families. But the houses would retain the feel of an 18th century New England village. They would not be just built "to-code," but exceed code requirements in safety and excellence of materials.

The school would be assured to offer the most genuinely Catholic curriculum, designed for the formation of devout young Catholics, and foster academic excellence according to standards that would seem impossible in even the most elite private schools in the US today. And there would be both a grade school and a high school.

There would be a Squire's Court, where the lord of the manor, I, would deal with minor matters relating to the community. The suitability of tenants for continued tenure would be based on behaviour. No one would be stripped of tenure for wearing jeans (though I don't like jeans) but a notorious lifestyle, or the use of drugs, or frequent public intoxication would probably earn them airfare back to the Aulde Sod.

Of course, there would be problems. The busybodies on the outside might not be the greatest threat. Every utopian community fails because of internal divisions. That is human nature. And old-fashioned Catholics from the West of Ireland are as apt as anyone to bring their own divisions with them. Even when the group is religiously and politically homogenous, there will be discord. And little old Squire Bracebridge, even with the best of intentions, will not be able to heal all wounds.

Of course, there is no prospect that such a project could ever be carried out. The money alone makes it impossible. Then, every other consideration of practicality and human nature, not to mention the intolerance of the society as a whole for such a conservative Catholic enclave would militate against it.

But it is a wonderful dream.


I'm Kind Of Surprised That Folks Are Just Now Noticing the Latin Mass Society's PDF Ordo

I have been linking to it and consulting it regularly since January. And I linked to it last year, and the year before, when it wasn't in the pestilential pdf format.

People should read my blog, and especially my extensive links, much more carefully.


Monday, September 17, 2007

As For How the Devil and His Slaves Are Reacting

Rorate Caeli has this.

And this hate-filled act of destruction (scroll down to the response that mentions the Hungarian bishop).


An Explosion of Beautiful Worship

The devil, and his slaves both in and out of the Church, must be exceedingly displeased with the sudden explosion of beautiful Masses said this weekend.

The New Liturgical Movement is pretty much THE clearinghouse for this past weekend's celebrations.

Bishop Finn

Bishop Perry in Milwaukee

EWTN (available as DVD)

Fathers Finigan and Zuhlsdorf at Blackfen, England

St. Columkille in Boston (to become a regular First Friday evening Mass!).

A return to Holy Trinity, Boston.
the first couple of photos are Holy Trinity, with our unmistakable high altar.

London Oratory

St. John Cantius, Chicago

Nashua, NH Now to be the second and fourth Sundays of each month.

Assumption Grotto

Kenrick-Glennon Seminary

Church of Our Saviour, in New York (Father Rutler's parish) with Fathers Lang and Cipolla.

Our Lady of Lourdes, Overbrook, Philadelphia

Raleigh, NC

And the "usual" indult Masses went on at Mary Immaculate of Lourdes in Newton, the Saint Benedict Center at Still River, Holy Name in Providence, St. Mary's in New Britain, Sacred Heart in New Haven, St. Mary's in Stamford, etc.


Weekend Sports Wrap-Up

My football teams fared well this weekend, though my baseball team just seemed to be walking in place.

Saint John's Prep beat Central Catholic 12-0, making them 2-0 on the season.

Boston College won its third game (3-0), beating Georgia Tech 24-10. This moved them up to a more respectable 14th in the AP poll this week.

The Patriots put all of the nonsense about their gaining an intelligence-gathering edge on opponents to rest by decisively thrashing the Chargers 38-14. They now have a 2-game lead int he AFC East.

Oh, but what about that Red Sox/Yankees match-up at Fenway? Well, the best that can be said is that they won one game by a wide margin (10-1 on Saturday). And the other two games were exciting and close. But they lost them. Friday, for some reason, closer Jonathan Papelbon said he, "didn't have his head in the game," (YOU DIDN'T HAVE YOUR HEAD IN A SEPTEMBER GAME AGAINST THE YANKEES!!!!!!!!) and blew a great lead. Sunday night, the Yankees won another squeaker. The magic number is now 9, the lead 4.5 games (they lost a game, gained it back, then lost it again). Short of a collapse coupled with another Yankee surge, the Sox will likely win the AL East. And, by a few percentage points, the Sox still have the best record in baseball (though, if you discounted April and May games, the Yankees would probably have a 10-12 game lead now). The Yankees have been dominant since the All Star break, but the Sox built a huge lead early in the season, and have done just enough to hold onto it. How they will fare in the playoffs, I don't know.


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