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Videos from Rothenbach Requiem Mass February 14, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, Liturgy, priests, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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Mass was offered today for the repose of the soul of Teresa Rothenbach. My wife tried to help care for her in her last days.

You gets what youse pays for.  Thus, the quality.  These are from right before the Gospel and the blessing of the catafalque at the end of Mass.

Prior to Gospel:

I learned today that the soul is placed feet towards the altar, and their feet placed facing east, so that when Christ comes again they will rise facing Him. I vaguely knew the latter part, but not the former, but it makes sense. Priests are buried in the opposite direction, as they must give an accouting for the souls in their charge.


The final exit:

It was a most beautiful Mass offered by three Fraternity priests.  I love Requiem Masses. I love the music – that’s a major reason I interrupted my participation to share this with you. I think they are the most beautiful Masses there are.  Which makes the present state of most funereal Masses in the Church today all the more tragic.  Along with the instant canonizations. Right before Mass, Fr. Wolfe gave a sermon on just that subject, covering the basics of how, without sanctifying Grace, we’d all go to hell because of original sin.  We have so lost the sense of sin in our society.  That’s a tragic thing. Having a sense of sin is not negative thing in the slightest unless you’re a worldling.  It makes us realize that we must repent and turn to Christ and Holy Mother Church for forgiveness of our sins, and the torrent of Grace that flows into us with the Blessed Sacrament. He also reminded us that dying is the most important thing we’ll ever do, and we had better be very well prepared when we die.  Fortunately, for Teresa, she had recourse to all the aid the Church can give before her death.  She died a holy death.

Having recourse to a holy priest is a blessing beyond counting.

Requiescat in pace.

One is done – you can count out Cardinal Turkson February 14, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Papa, Society.
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Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana has been a media darling since Pope Benedict announced his shocking abdication on Monday.  In an age of absolutely nonsensical political correctness run amok, secularists around the world have decided it’s time for the Church to have a minority, especially black, Pope.  Many were predicting he was the odds-on favorite, which shows how little these people actually know about the Church.  But, in the false wisdom of the world, where concerns such as orthodox and holiness and the will of the Spirit don’t matter a whit, Turkson is the odds on favorite.

Overall, he seems to hold pretty orthodox views, especially against homosexual acts and state recognition of gays simulating marriage, but he’s perhaps wavered on condoms a bit.  He’s seen as a biblical scholar, which is supposed to weigh in his favor according to Rocco Palmo.  I think almost all of the major papabile’s being talked about, with the exception of Tagle and Scola, are quite orthodox.  Both of those guys are from the Bologna school, the very heart of the “Spirit of Vatican II.”  Scola could well be the closest thing to Pope Paul VI in this papal conclave.  For Turkson, most of his views seem pretty orthodox.  Aside from a bit of wavering on condoms with relation to HIV (possibly following the Pope’s own unfortunate comments from 2010), I haven’t seen anything that made my hair stand on end. But what is weighing most against Turkson is his propensity to say and do unpopular or inappropriate things.  He had to publicly apologize for showing a video on muslim demographics I’ve had on this blog at the Synod of Bishops late last year.

However, whatever was in his favor or against his papabile status, that all probably went down the drain when he seemingly campaigned to be elected the next Pope in an interview in the Daily Torygraph:

Cardinal Peter Turkson, a 64-year-old Ghanaian prelate, is the bookmaker’s early favourite to succeed Pope Benedict XVI.

He told The Daily Telegraph Tuesday that his biggest challenge, should he be elected, would be to maintain an orthodox Catholic doctrine while “at the same time knowing how to apply it so that you do not become irrelevant in a world that has continuous changes”.

……The African prelate said he had reflected on the enormous personal burden of becoming the leader of the Catholic Church. “It would certainly mean a lot if I had to be a pope,” he said. “If I was elected pope it would signal a lot of [personal] change. Very big change in a lot of regards. I have been an archbishop, which involved a certain amount of leadership and now having to do this on a world level, the dimensions expand almost infinitely.

“It is going to be a life-changing experience and I think that is what it has been for Benedict and those who have gone before us. The challenge will also be with the individual to want to make his mark, not trying to fit into anybody’s shoes but finding his own shoes to wear.” [these foregoing statements almost ring of an assurance he will be elected.  That’s going to rub many Cardinals the wrong way.]

Cardinal Turkson also said the Vatican needs to “restore and repair” an image that has been “badly compromised by recent scandals”……

…….”It is a possibility [that there will be an African pope],” he said. “Already at the last conclave there was a move to have a candidate from the southern half of the globe,” he said. But he pointed out that there is constant speculation over the idea of an African pope.

“Before I got here there was a young African cardinal called Arinze from Nigeria. And at every conclave everybody was talking about him as an emerging candidate. Arinze is now 80 and actually there is no way he can participate in the conclave. So after Arinze another African shows up in the Vatican, now there are actually two of us, there is a cardinal from Guinea. So again there is speculation.”

There’s just a certain assurance there that I think is going to turn off many Cardinals, especially Otis Anderson and Jim Hart.  Heh.  I’m not the first commentator to notice this.  Even without this misstep, I think Turkson was an unlikely candidate.  I just don’t think he has the gravitas to be Pope.

And while I said I wouldn’t speculate on who will be the next Pope, I would say Europeans still have by far the best shot, followed by North America.

Pope Benedict finishing with a bang February 14, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, General Catholic, Papa, priests, sadness, scandals, secularism, SSPX.
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A reader/friend/commenter sent me a link to Rorate Caeli offline about the Pope’s apparently final offer/demand to the SSPX, demanding resumption of dialogue with the Holy See by a week from Friday (not much time, there), or offers for reconciliation will be made to individual SSPX priests.  This is quite stunning, and my friend thinks this may reveal part of the motivation for the Pope’s abdication – to accelerate the SSPX process and bring it to an end, one way or another:

Rorate can independently confirm the reporthinted at just now in Le Forum Catholique — that the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has sent a letter with a final offer to the Society of Saint Pius X (FSSPX / SSPX): resume the dialogue with the Holy See by February 22, or else the Holy See will make an offer of reconciliation and full communion to individual SSPX priests. (What kind of offer or structural basis will be offered is unclear.)

We can only wonder how things would be like if dissenting liberal theological faculties and the individual heretics teaching in them were approached by the CDF with the same diligence and focus.
I have to say, that last bit is a big ouchie, because it is so true.  There is so much effort expended on bringing traditional/orthodox type Catholics into line, whatever that means, but it seems there isn’t nearly so much effort expended on reining in apostates running amok with the Church’s imprimatur.  That’s all I have to say on that, except, wow.  The Holy Father appears to mean business.  I have no idea what kind of structure would be stood up for any SSPX priests that did leave, nor do I have any inkling how many might take the offer.  I do know, however, that the life of most SSPX priests is grueling.
Another stunner from Rorate – the Pope makes some final comments on the Council, claiming it became a disaster (pretty much his view) because it was hijacked by the media and radicals in the Church using the media to advance their revolution (emphasis in original):
The media saw the Council as a political struggle, a struggle for power between different currents within the Church. It was obvious that the media would take the side of whatever faction best suited their world. There were those who sought a decentralization of the Church, power for the bishops and then, through the Word for the “people of God”, the power of the people, the laity. There was this triple issue: the power of the Pope, then transferred to the power of the bishops and then the power of all … popular sovereignty. Naturally they saw this as the part to be approved, to promulgate, to help.
This was the case for the liturgy: there was no interest in the liturgy as an act of faith, but as a something to be made understandable, similar to a community activity, something profane. And we know that there was a trend, which was also historically based, that said: “Sacredness is a pagan thing, possibly even from the Old Testament. In the New Testament the only important thing is that Christ died outside: that is, outside the gates, that is, in the secular world”. Sacredness ended up as profanity even in worship: worship is not worship but an act that brings people together, communal participation and thus participation as activity. And these translations, trivializing the idea of ​​the Council, were virulent in the practice of implementing the liturgical reform, born in a vision of the Council outside of its own key vision of faith. And it was so, also in the matter of Scripture: Scripture is a book, historical, to treat historically and nothing else, and so on.
And we know that this Council of the media was accessible to all. So, dominant, more efficient, this Council created many calamities, so many problems, so much misery, in reality: seminaries closed, convents closed, the liturgy was trivialized … and the true Council has struggled to materialize, to be realized: the virtual Council was stronger than the real Council. But the real strength of the Council was present and slowly it has emerged and is becoming the real power which is also true reform, true renewal of the Church.
After that, the Pope tries to finish on a note of hope, that the “true Council” is finally emerging from the detritus of the false Council of the Media.  I think a new phrase has just entered the lexicon.
It’s gratifying to see the Holy Father recognizing, very clearly, that the Council’s effects have been disastrous. Whether that has been due to the Council being abused and taken advantage of, or whether that is because there are grave problems with the conciliar texts themselves, is going to take some additional years to unwind.  I’m not fully convinced either way, but my sympathies have tended towards the latter over the last couple of years.  There is simply too much scholarship pointing up the problems of the wording of the Conciliar texts to completely ignore the texts themselves as a factor.
The very wording of the Council itself is becoming quite dated in parts, with references to the 20th Century and “modern man,” obviously a creature of the 1960s.  How will that read in 200 years?  It’s going to sound passing strange, I think.
I’m late for a Requiem Mass.  Discuss.

Blurry incensing of the altar February 14, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Dallas Diocese, fun, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Latin Mass, Liturgy, Tradition.
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Well, this is sure to set records on Youtube!  It looked crystal clear on the screen when I shot it.  Sorry for the blurriness.  This was taken at at Ash Wednesday High Mass last night at Mater Dei in Irving.  Fr. Baukknect offering.

I meant to take more since I was sitting right up front, but I was too busy actively participating.

Texas German dying out February 14, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Basics, family, fun, General Catholic, Glory, sadness, sanctity, secularism, Society, Tradition, Virtue.
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Before I met my wife, a story like this would not have held much interest.  But my wife hails from one of the great Texas German families – two of them, actually.  Her father is a Lange, which name is very frequently seen around Fredericksburg on road signs and mailboxes. But her mother was a Hoelscher, a huge family which bills itself as the largest family in Texas, with over 5000 families descending from the original 2 German immigrants.  Strong Catholics, these, they have for the most part instilled the Faith in each succeeding generation, and many of these families are very large.  My father-in-law has, I think, 68 grandchildren and 5 (or 6?) great-grandchildren.  Ach, it’s easy to lose count!  Family reunions are awesome!  My brother-in-law who comments here sometimes has 18 kids!  Fantastic family.

Prior to WWII, almost all these families lived in primarily German communties scattered around central and south Texas from Shriner and other points in the east to Floresville and other places in the south, up to Fredericksburg in the north and west out to Uvalde and Ozona.  San Antonio used to have a huge German presence but that has all largely melted away.  But for a very long period of Texas history, German – mostly Catholic German – culture was very influential.  But with the melting pot effect and urbanization which has occurred since WWII, these unique communities have scattered and fragmented, and are no longer the cohesive bodies they used to be.  Which, is kind of sad, because there was and is a lot of very cool culture in the Texas German community. It’s where we got much of our Texas food, from barbeque to chicken fried steak.    That’s one thing I like about traveling through the Hill Country extensively – finding little small town food gems.

My father-in-law grew up speaking a German dialect unique to Texas.  This Texas German was very widely spoken when he was a kid, and he grew up knowing no English at their ranch outside Harper. He even refused to attend school for a year or two because he didn’t want to learn no stinkin’ English!  Finally, he had to go, he and his brothers riding a horse to school every day.  I kid you not.  That’s so awesome.

But for many reasons, my father-in-law’s generation failed to pass on Texas German to their children, and the dialect is dying out.  I know many of my wife’s older family members do still speak at least some Texas German, but none of my wife’s generation does.

Since the language is slowly dying, a linguistics professor at UT is trying to record as much as he can for posterity before it finally goes kaput:

It was easy for Dorothy Schneider to get in touch with her European roots growing up in the tiny farming community of Galle, Texas, in the 1930s and 1940s.

“There was German spoken everywhere,” the now 75-year-old said recently. “It was our first language in my family. You could speak it at the church, at the butcher shop, all over the place.”

Today, though she doesn’t live far from her girlhood community, it is almost impossible for Schneider to find people who will speak her native tongue with her. She knows it is dying, and she can’t do anything about it.

“It’s terrible, but I just have to accept this,” she said.

As the obscure dialect of Texas German nears extinction, an entire culture and way of life that deeply shaped Texas is about to disappear.

A century ago, more than 100,000 people in a large swathe of south central Texas spoke the dialect. To the uninitiated, it sounds like a strange mishmash of English and German.

Today, perhaps 8,000 people can speak it, the youngest of whom are in their 60s, according to Hans Boas, a University of Texas at Austin professor who studies Texas German. Few have passed it on to their children and grandchildren, so the dialect is now impossible to save, Boas said.

All that can be done now is catalogue its characteristics for posterity. Boas’ Texas German Dialect Project is racing to conduct interviews with the last remaining speakers for the benefit of future genealogists, linguists and historians.

I’ve come to hold a great deal of respect for my wife’s family.  I think it’s very impressive that they have so successfully transmitted the Faith to each succeeding generation, although in the past 50 years that trend has weakened a great deal.  Except for my father-in-law, he was almost entirely successful in keeping his kids not just in the Faith, but quite passionate about it. Pretty impressive in this day and age, to raise 9 kids and every single one of them is a practicing Catholic, and most have large families.  He’s a gruff old guy, a tough, wiry German even at 83.  About 12 years ago, he got attacked by a wild javalina that put its tusk through his hand – all the way! – and he killed it by bashing its head in with a hammer.  He can field dress a deer in about 3 minutes. Tough.  Country.  Catholic.  That’s alright by me.