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More like this……… March 16, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, fun, General Catholic, Lent, Our Lady, Tradition, Virtue.
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…….a big h/t to TFP Student Action, Holy Week processions in Spain:

Apparently, there is still some faith in Spain, or is it just public/tourist spectacle?

I love the giant pointy hats, but you’d get clobbered here wearing them. 

There is alot more at the link!

Ho boy would I ever be so into a procession like this.

Why we fast…… March 16, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Eucharist, General Catholic, Glory, Holy suffering, Lent, Tradition, Virtue.
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……after Jesus was baptized by St. John the Baptist, he went into the desert for 40 days to fast (Matt 4:1-11).  That period is the inspiration for the Lenten 40 day fast.  A comment on that period from Fr. George Leo Haydock’s notes on the Douay Reims Bible:

Jesus Christ was led by the Holy Gost, immediately after His baptism, into the desert to prepare, by fasting and prayer, for His public ministry, and to merit for us by His vicotry over the enemy for our salvation, force to conquer him also ourselves.  By this conduct, He teaches all that were to be in future times called to his ministry, how they are to retire into solitude, in order to converse with God in prayer, and draw down the blessing of Heaven upon themselves and their undertaking. What treasures of Grace might we expect, if, as often as we receive any of the Sacraments, we were to retire within ourselves, and shut out, for a time, the world and its cares.  Then should we come prepared to withstand temptation, and should experience the divine assitance in every difficulty through life. The life of man is a warfare on earth. It was not given us, says St. Hilary of Poitiers, to spend it in indolence, but to wage a continual war against our spiritual enemies. In the greatest sanctity there are often the greatest and most incessant trials; for satan wishes nothing so much as the fall of these Saints.

By these trials, we learn the strength we have received from above, we are preserved from self-complacency and pride in the gifts of Heaven; we confirm the renunciation we made in baptism of the devil and all his works and pomps; we become stronger, and better prepared for future attacks, and are feelingly convinced of the dignity to which we have been raised, and of which the enemy of souls endeavours all he can to deprive us.

Bishop Farrell pushes for more Confession March 16, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, episcopate, General Catholic, Interior Life, North Deanery, priests, Sacraments, Tradition, Virtue.
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At the Ordination of Fr.’s Yamauchi, Unachukwu, and MacDonald this past July, Bishop Farrell gave an inspiring sermon where he stressed the Sacramental nature of the priesthood.  He stated that, in addition to a vibrant personal prayer life and the de rigeur action of proclaiming the Gospel, all priests must center their vocation around the offering of Sacraments, and must make time for them as much as possible.  To this writer, the Sacrament of Confession has been sadly overlooked over the past several decades.  Confession is such a key, foundational aspect of the faith, and yet so few have availed themselves of this great Sacrament.  Pope Benedict XVI himself has repeatedly stated that regular Confession is a fundamental part of anyone’s relationship with God.  To have any hope of growth in the Faith, we must avail ourselves of this Sacrament regularly – that means, at least monthly.

But, even with Bishop Farrell’s stirring words last summer, many parishes still have only very limited Confession times, generally only an hour a week.  There is one parish I know of that has none.  So, Bishop Farrell is initiating an apparently Diocese-wide initiative to have simultaneous Confession at every parish in the Diocese from 6:30-9pm on April 4th – that is, Wednesday in Holy Week.  That’s a great start, but it must be only a start.  Confession is not a once-a-year event.  It should be an ongoing, regular part of one’s life, and thus generous Confession times should be available at every parish.

In the current issue of Texas Catholic, there is also a listing of most confession times in the Diocese.  I say most, because I note at least two parishes where the list does not appear complete.  But having said that, you can get a pretty good idea of when Confession will be available at your parish, or one near you.  There is far too much information to list in a blog post.  But I’ll provide a few summary data points:

  • It appears a fair number of parishes have increased the amount of time for Confession in the past year or two.  It appears that now about 1/4 of parishes have more than 2 hours of Confession time a week.
  • Unfortunately, around 1/3 of parishes have one hour or less
  • Most parishes fall somewhere in between 1 and 2 hours per week. 
  • Reconciliation services, which involve a public gathering followed by individual confessions, are pertty wisdespread during Lent. So long as these services don’t involve the problematic, most likely unefficacious “general absolution,” that’s fine.
  • During this immediate Lenten period, many parishes like St. Mark in Plano and St. John the Apostle in Terrell are having, or have had, many extra periods of Confession.

There are some standout parishes.  St. Thomas Aquinas in Dallas has quite extensive ongoing Confession times, as does St.  Jude in Allen, Immaculate Conception in Corsicana, St. William in Greenville, and a few other parishes.  Some parishes have Confession five or more days a week, which is also very important.  One thing I have noted, is that the more Confession time is available, the more our priests place an emphasis on the Sacrament by concrete action, the more souls tend to avail themselves of it. 

I pray there will come a time in this Diocese, AND SOON, that Confession will once again be a daily, or nearly daily, part of life in every parish.  I love this Sacrament so much.  It has done such good for me, even though I am still a wretched sinner, and have so many sins that continue to crop up.  But coming out of the Confessional, being “clean” again, returning to the life of Grace, or just getting a spiritual “tune-up,” is such an incredible feeling.  It is so very good for the soul.  I don’t know how this Sacrament fell out of favor, but I find it absolutely critical for spiritual development.  There is no question that as one avails themselves of this Sacrament regularly over time, along with a preparatory and daily examination of conscience, that more sins and imperfections will be revealed, more things will become apparent that need to be excised from one’s life, and one will grow further in the spiritual life.  I really believe that at least bi-weekly Confession is critical for good spiritual growth, and if one has been lost in the culture for years, and has absorbed many of the evils that abound, more frequent Confession may be necessary for quite some time. 

A great thanks to Bishop Farrell for emphasizing this critical Sacrament.  I pray that more and more priests will be even more generous with their time in the Confessional!


Ongoing Holy Hour for Vocations at UD Chapel March 16, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Dallas Diocese, Eucharist, General Catholic, Interior Life, priests, religious, Tradition, Virtue.
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Every fourth Thursday of the month there is a Holy Hour for Vocations at the University of Dallas Church of the Incarnation – 1845 E. Northgate Dr. in Irving (75062).  The next Holy Hour is March 22nd, from 7-8 pm.  There wil be Exposition, music, prayer, Adoration, and Benediction.  Afterwards, there is a social with refreshments, where you can meet various priests and religious in the Diocese.

I may try to go next week.  I’ll get there late if I do, but I’ll try to go.  Although there are many men in seminary for the Diocese at present, we need far more.  We need also many more vocations to religions life, to good, holy, orthodox orders.  I pray for this intention daily.  Uniting our prayers during Adoration of Our Lord in His Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament is a very powerful form of prayer, and should instill an even deeper reverence for and belief in that Real Presence. 

I pray many are able to attend. 

This sweatshirt makes me so hungry………. March 16, 2012

Posted by Tantumblogo in fun, General Catholic, Holy suffering, Interior Life, Lent.
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……….Lenten torture.


Offer it up!

I’ve been doing this wimpy “half-day” fast all during Lent – I don’t eat anything until well into the afternoon, at least most days.  I told Voris that and he’s like……dude, that’s every day for me!  But then, he’s used to staying up until 3 in the morning, wired out of his mind on Dr. Pepper, and pounding out Vortex scripts.  Those TV types……..they’re not normal.