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Who says you can’t have a Eucharistic Procession in a modern US city? September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, General Catholic, Society.
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From Orbis Catholicus, numerous pictures of a Eucharistic Procession in downtown Charlotte, North Carolina.  God be praised!  What a beautiful thing!  If we were to have a Eucharistic Procession in downtown Dallas, I’d be there rain or shine, no matter what.  What a fantastic witness of our Faith!

Some say that Processions of this type are passe’, or that they are not “appropriate” for present day Catholics to do.  We don’t want to be triumphalist, after all.  Bah!  This is nothing more than a visible, public witness of our Faith, and a spiritual work of mercy for all those who are exposed to this visible Sign and who may return to, or come to, the Sacraments as a result.  What a great blessing.  Kudos to the priests and bishop involved.

Who would like to participate in a Eucharistic or Marian Procession locally?  I pray for more celebrations of our Faith like this every day. 

It’s Crusader Cat approved!

UPDATE:  So, I’m an idiot.  Apparently, the Diocese of Charlotte has hosted Eucharistic Congresses, with Processions, for the last 2 years.  Nevertheless, what a beautiful thing to do!  Such a Procession here would probably prompt my checkbook to fly open mysteriously.

Beautiful Church renovation/restoration – it can be done September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, General Catholic.
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You can change your average, bland, possibly even sterile, suburban Catholic parish into something remarkable, and without breaking the bank.  Viz, St. Theresa in Sugarland, TX.

Before:

That’s pretty bad.  Now, the updated Sanctuary:


More detail:

Would anyone find that sort of renovation offensive in their Church?  Is there a certain set who would find it too “medieval,” and not “hip” enough?  I love it.  I think it’s brilliant.

Sick – top Twitter topic “music to abort your baby by” September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Abortion, General Catholic, sickness, Society.
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Uff…..this is gross.  So, I’m not twitterer. I have an account, but have never done anything with it, because, frankly, I don’t care to condense thoughts down to 140 characters.  Nevertheless, the #2 “trending topic” (meaning, popular) on Twitter over the weekend was @abortionclinincplaylist songs – songs one would like to hear while having a living child ripped from your womb.  The topic started off in seriousness, but rapidly lapsed into parody as people tried to think of “funny” songs to go with the theme:

Oops I Did it Again – Brittany Spears

Heartless – Kanye West

There Goes My Baby – Usher

I Want My Baby Back Ribs – The Chili’s Restaurant Song

Another One Bites The Dust – Queen

My Curse – Kill Switch Engage

Cuts Like A Knife – Bryan Adams

Bye, Bye, Bye – Nsync

Kill You – Eminem

Murder Was The Case – Snoop Dogg

So, while obviously sophmoric, disgusting, and the trivialization of a barbaric act (does anyone think we’ll see @musictobeexecutedby anytime soon on Twitter?), the choices are, I think, unintentionally revealing.  Read the above – references to murder, killing, cutting – it shows that even among those that either find abortion trivial/funny or who think it’s a good thing, that there is a recognition that abortion is the killing of a living human being.  I haven’t ever seen a survey to this effect, but I think the vast majority of the public recognize the usual abortion industry claims regarding the “fetus”, that it is “just a blob of cells,” or “it’s not alive,” and my favorite “it’s not a baby” are patently false.  Most people understand that there is nothing substantially different between a pre-born baby at 12 weeks gestation and a baby at 40 weeks just about to be born – they are identical, just at different stages of development.  Unintentionally, I think these sickos have further helped undermine a key abortion industry mantra.

Ecumenism gone wild, Mk. II September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Ecumenism, foolishness, General Catholic, sadness.
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I’m ripping some material off from Terry Nelson, so, he can sue me later:

I don’t know which photo I hate more.  This:

Or this:

Fr. Z has a post asking how Catholics should view Islam.  Historically, the Catholic Church and Islam have been implacable enemies.  Since Islam first burst out of Arabia in the 7th century, it has waged a steady war against Christendom.  The Dark Ages were caused less by the fall of the Roman Empire than by the predations of maruading Muslims.  Christendom did not fight back, except at Tours, very well at all for the first several centuries.  But, gradually, Crusades from Jerusalem and Cilicia to Spain and Portugal drove Islam back and reclaimed territory that had been Christian before Islam’s great wave of conquest swept over the region.   But it hardly stopped there – the Church was continuing to coordinate almost entirely defensive struggles against Islam as late as the 18th century.  After that, the West became so dramatically ascendent that the involvement of the Church or “Holy War” was no longer needed. 

As Terry Nelson notes, it seems the Church woke up some day around 1970 and suddenly decided that Islam was just one of the many groups of people peacefully struggling to come to God, and that what most muslims wanted was not conquest or submission but to sing kum-bay-yah around a campfire.  

I don’t know why Pope John Paul II did kissed that book, but I do know that is why I will not call him Great.

Why kneel for Communion? September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, General Catholic, Latin Mass.
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Via Fr. Z, an endorsement by the esteemable Sandro Magister in L’Osservatore Romano for the ancient practice of kneeling for Communion:

Today kneeling – especially on a bare floor – has fallen into disuse. So much so that Benedict XVI’s desire to give communion to the faithful on the tongue, and kneeling, is cause for amazement.

Kneeling for communion is one of the innovations that pope Joseph Ratzinger has introduced when he celebrates the Eucharist.

But rather than an innovation, this is a return to tradition. The others are placing the crucifix at the center of the altar, “so that at the Mass we are all looking at Christ, and not at each other,” and the frequent use of Latin “to emphasize the universality of the faith and the continuity of the Church.”

In an interview with the English weekly “The Catholic Herald,” master of pontifical ceremonies Guido Marini has confirmed that the pope will stick with this style of celebration during his upcoming trip to the United Kingdom.

In particular, Marini has announced that Benedict XVI will recite the entire preface and canon in Latin, while for the other texts of the Mass he will adopt the new English translation that will enter into use in the entire English-speaking world on the first Sunday of Advent in 2011: this because the new translation “is more faithful to the original Latin and of a more elevated style” compared with the current one.

The attraction that the Church of Rome exercised over many illustrious English converts of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries – from Newman to Chesterton to Benson – was in part the universalism of the Latin liturgy. An attraction to a solid and ancient faith that today is moving many Anglican communities to ask for admission to Catholicism.

The “reform of the reform” attributed to pope Ratzinger in the liturgical field is taking place partly in this way: simply, and with the example given by him when he celebrates.

But among the standard-setting practices of Benedict XVI, the one least understood – so far – is perhaps that of having the faithful kneel for communion.

This is almost never done, in any of the churches all over the world. In part because the communion rails at which one knelt to receive communion have been abandoned or dismantled almost everywhere.

But the sense of church flooring has also been lost. Traditionally, the floors were very ornate precisely in order to act as a foundation and guide to the greatness and profundity of the mysteries celebrated.

Magister then goes on to quote a document written Msgr. Marco Agostini, a Vatican official, who laments the utilitarian nature of modern Church construction and, in particular, our bare or carpeted floors.  If one walks into an older Church, one, say, built prior to 1930 or so, one will likely find a floor inlaid with beautiful patterned tiles, or mosaics, or paintings of various scenes from Scripture or the Tradition of the Church (that is, if they haven’t been paved over in some pique of modernism).   Certainly, I’m a big proponent of kneeling for Communion, even at parishes where such practice is not “regular.”   But, I’m also a big proponent of seeing our churches designed and built with far more care, a far greater sense of the sacred and the transcendent, and with an eye towards giving all glory to God and our Savior, and getting away from the idea of the Mass as a family get together.  Even some of the “better” churches constructed in this diocese in recent years are, lamentably, terribly cold and barren, almost bereft of art and statuary and oriented, it would seem, more towards being a sterile meeting hall than a place set aside to give God His due.  This is one of the many things I pray will change as time goes by.  I would rather see fewer, but far more high quality, churches built, than the present trend of throwing up churches of pre-fab concrete with bare floors and nothing but cold stone or concrete interior walls.

Prayer request – UPDATED September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, General Catholic.
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A distant relation of mine (more, my wife’s) was seriously wounded in Afghanistan on Friday.  He is Marine Mark Juarez.  I know some readers keep fairly extensive prayer lists.  If you would be so kind, say a word for his recovery.  He may be on his way to Landstuhl in Germany soon, indicating a pretty serious injury. 

We pray near nightly for our servicemen and women serving this nation in unpopular wars.  We pray they not be forgotten, that they may be strengthened by God and receive great blessings for their service to others, and that their families may be sustained during the trial of their absence.  We should pray more.  As Jesus said, “no greater love hath a man than this, to lay down his life for his friends” [Jn 15:13]

UPDATE: Mark has been downgraded to very serious condition and will be flown to the United States, Walter Reed Army Hospital more than likely, tomorrow.  He has served 5 tours in the mid-east.  He is a husband and father.  Please pray for him, in your charity.

In other news, marriage collapses in Britain September 13, 2010

Posted by Tantumblogo in foolishness, General Catholic, sickness, Society.
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Catholic Culture, quoting statistics published in the Daily Telegraph, notes the collapse of Catholic marriages in Britain:

The Daily Telegraph offers some interesting graphics as background for Pope Benedict’s visit. Diocese by diocese, the site provides a statistical view of the Catholic Church in 2010, measured against the figures for the same dioceses in 1982, when Pope John Paul II visited the country.

On the whole, the overall Catholic population is larger today than in 1982. The number of priests, nuns, parishes, and Catholic schools is roughly the same. The number of children baptized is up a bit; the number of adults received into the Church is down a bit.

And then there’s one statistic that jumps off the page: The number of Catholic weddings has dropped In one diocese after another, usually by 50% or more—often much more. In Leeds there were 1,334 marriages in 1982; this year shows just 104. In Salford the number plunged from 2,402 to 688; in Nottingham, from 1,131 to 383. The trend is consistent and overwhelming; Catholics are not marrying in the Church.

This trend is not limited to Catholics – across British society, marriage rates have collapsed and cohabitation has exploded.  We see here a further indication of the increasing tend towards hedonism and neo-paganism as British society fully embraces the secularist deceit and turns away from Christian morality.  The problems resulting from this are legion: lower birth rates, children with far less settled environments and all the problems that stem from that, further breakdown in moral standards, and a selfishness that grows and saps the moral vitality of a culture.  In short, nihilism.  The poor Pope.

I have been praying that Pope Benedict’s visit to Britain might somehow spark a revival of the practice of the Faith, and all that implies.  I am not terribly sanguine at the prospects of this trip.  I fear it could be a disaster.  I pray the Holy Spirit will work some miracle to turn the increasingly hardened hearts of the British people away from the path of self-destruction and towards a return to living in the Light of Christ.  I think things are so far gone that no earthly power could produce this change.  It is up to the Infinitely Merciful and Beneficent God to take pity on the British people and send unwarranted grace into their hearts to start to work a change from their embrace of Moloch.

I used to be something of an Anglophile.  I guess I still am, at least as far as a British culture that existed up to, perhaps, the mid-20th Century.  I find nothing attractive in modern day Britain.  My experiences there convinced me of a society so blinded by its own self-love that it is likely to prove incapable of correcting itself before disaster sets in.  Churchill was not a very devout man, but I think he would be broken hearted at the present condition of the British state. 

And, there but for the Grace of God will go the United States, for the same forces of secularism, sexualization, indifferentism, and self-love are at work here, just not  quite as advanced. 

Pray.