A little change of pace February 4, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Art and Architecture, awesomeness, Basics, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Latin Mass, Tradition, Virtue.
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I read about this pre-Trent hymn called Dum Fabricator Mundi. It’s actually quite ancient. But since it wasn’t used in the Good Friday liturgy of the Diocese of Rome in the period leading up to Pope St. Pius V, it did not get included in the Missal codified by that Saint. It was, however, used fairly commonly in Europe in the medieval period. I like chant a great deal, and thought I’d this one and a few others that are lesser known:
Another version, which sounds a bit more Eastern to me though it features more female voices:
This one is better known, and more polyphony than plain chant:
Anyway, I just needed a little beauty to clean my head. The bad news just keeps coming. The severance packages have been chopped in half. Of course!
What do you think of this list of the top twenty most dangerous Catholics? – UPDATED February 4, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, different religion, disaster, episcopate, error, foolishness, Francis, General Catholic, Papa, Revolution, scandals, secularism, the struggle for the Church.
So Church Militant TV has a new video up I both saw, and a reader sent to me, concerning a list of the top twenty most dangerous Catholics of the last 100 years.
Now, the list remains incomplete, only half has been released so far, but as I read it, I was quite surprised to find so few in the upper echelons of the hierarchy. The entire list is there if you take the survey. My mistake, I only read the article at Church Militant itself. So all the points made below stand. No popes listed, the names are heavily American, and almost no one in the curia or a major leader at Vatican II. For instance, Donald Wuerl is a politician, tends modernist (or is, whatever), and has given scandal on numerous occasions, but, really? Top 20 worst Catholics? Not even close. He’s nothing compared to some of the radicals in Europe, or some of those from the 60s-70s timeframe. To leave off Cardinal Martini is inexplicable to me. He’s the father of the current-day progressive wing in the Church. No de Chardin? No Congar? But bear in mind, some of those – de Chardin, Congar – received numerous plaudits from post-conciliar popes. Perhaps that played a role?
Here are some of the more prominent names:
Hans Urs von Balthasar
I’m struck by several things. For one, the list is overwhelmingly American. But many of the most destructive ideas have flowed out of Europe, and often, from high cardinals and others deeply entrenched at the highest levels of the Church. Most of the names listed here are priests, whose ideas, while certainly damnable, would not have had the impact they did had ecclesiastical authority not failed in its duty to discipline them or exclude them from the body of the faithful.
Now, the list is only half complete, so I’m hoping a whole slew of names – Martini, Frings, Alfrink, Bea, Congar, Suenens, Bugnini, etc., will make the list. Well, they didn’t. A list that does not include a number of the leading radicals from Vatican II – which includes those appointed by Paul VI to lead the Council – is woefully incomplete. And there are more top officials from today that I might include in my list – Koch, Schoenborn, Marx, Kasper…….basically the entire German episcopate.
But I’ll say something else. It is true that the crisis in the Church is a crisis of bishops. But who has appointed those bishops, and kept them in office, and even protected them, at times? If the list of “most dangerous Catholics” means those who have contributed the most to the crisis in the Church, can any list be complete that does not feature the names of Giovanni Montini and possibly Jose Bergoglio?
Look, I understand CMTVs editorial views. I know they are loathe to criticize any pontiff, especially the post-conciliar ones. I understand their viewpoint, even if I think it erroneous.
Having said that, from what limited study I’ve done of Vatican II, I am unable to conclude otherwise than that Pope Paul VI got the Council he wanted, more or less. John XXIII set the tone, but it was Paul VI who packed the all-important leadership/management with the Council almost entirely with thoroughgoing progressives. It was Paul VI who decided, at virtually every important logjam, in favor of the progressives, at least until the very end, when their excesses began to surprise and shock even him. And it was Paul VI who unleashed the Novus Ordo and deliberately put forth the notion that the TLM was abrogated, to the point of persecuting those priests who refused to go along. I could go on, HJA Sire and others have thoroughly criticized the pontificate of Paul VI in quite harsh terms.
Since the Council, with some exception for Benedict XVI, the dominant liberal interpretation of it has been allowed to stand, and even be promoted, by every pontiff of the intervening period, at least by silence and inaction if not by actual promotion (which, of course, has frequently occurred, as well). But you know all this already.
So I guess the question is…….can a list of the most “dangerous” Catholics of the last 100 years be complete without including any popes? Or is it tending too much towards scandal, with the wide audience CMTV has, to say so? (I tend to take more liberties, as I regard my readership as generally very well formed and steadfast, and able to stand “sterner stuff”).
And what of the many non-Americans/fathers of Vatican II who have contributed most to the collapse? And no Tielhard de Chardin? No Anibale Bugnini?
Nevertheless, while argument over who should be included could go on forever, I think the basic idea, to identify by name some of the most damaging Catholics of recent years is a pretty good one. While you or I might already be aware of most or all of these folks, many are not. It’s helpful to get those names out there. Who else would you have on your list?
This blog has long had a great love for Fr. Michael Rodriguez. I was very gratified when reader skeinster sent me a link to this interview Father gave to Louie Verrecchio. Father gives some updates on his situation viz a viz El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz in this interview. Since it’s out there in the wide open internet, I guess I can cover it, and comment on it.
Below, the entire excerpt involving the impasse between Fr. Rodriguez and Bishop Seitz (emphasis in original, I add comments). I need to make very clear all commentary below is mine alone and is not based on any input from Fr. Rodriguez whatsoever:
Fr. Rodriguez: At present, January 2016, I am a priest in good standing of the Diocese of El Paso, TX, with no pastoral assignment.
My Bishop, Most Rev. Mark J. Seitz, had appointed me as the Administrator of Sacred Heart Mission in Shafter, Texas (a small mission in one of the most remote parts of the diocese), effective July 11, 2014, for a term of three years. However, as a sine qua non condition of the assignment, he insisted that I offer the Novus Ordo Missæ. At the time, I had already been offering the Traditional Latin Mass exclusively for almost three years!
On July 24, 2014, my Bishop issued a Personal Precept which included the order, “I enjoin you to celebrate the Mass and Sacraments according to the Novus Ordo in the Mission of Shafter. The Mass and the Sacraments must be celebrated in the vernacular of the people (English or Spanish) and not Ad Orientem.” [I know of no possible justification in the Canon Law or rubrics by which a priest could be forced to offer Mass facing the people. Versus populum has NEVER been codified as a default or required position for the priest in any authoritative Church document above national council level. And the decisions of national councils are NOT authoritative.]
Throughout my nineteen years as a priest, I have always done my best to practice the virtue of obedience, but now I was put in an impossible situation. St. John of the Cross teaches, “Obedience is a penance of the intellect and therefore a more acceptable sacrifice than all corporal penances. Hence God loves your tiniest act of obedience more than all other homages you might think of offering Him.” What was I to do? Never before had the opening words of the prayer from the Divine Office struck a deeper chord in my soul, “Deus in adiutórium meum inténde. Dómine, ad adiuvándum me festína.” “O God, come to my assistance. O Lord, make haste to help me.” The decision I had to make was my most difficult one yet as a priest. Holy Mary, Virgin Mother of God, intercede for me, a poor sinner.
I wrote many letters to my Bishop. The following is a sample of this correspondence; it is an excerpt from a letter which I wrote to him on September 8, 2014, the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary:
I am 100% committed to my priestly promise of obedience. You are my bishop, and thus, I have promised obedience to you. It is my firm and sincere intention to be obedient to you. Unfortunately for me (and my conscience), your July 24, 2014, Precept contains an order which is “problematic,” to say the least.
[This is really very important……] The order you are giving contradicts Pope St. Pius V’s Apostolic Constitution Quo Primum, Canon IX (a dogmatic canon) of Session XXII of the Holy Council of Trent, Pope Pius VI’s ConstitutionAuctorem Fidei (see the 33rd of 85 propositions which are condemned, Denzinger 1533), Pope Pius XII’s Encyclical LetterMediator Dei 59, and the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, Sacrosanctum Concilium 36 and 54. Moreover, your order appears to be irreconcilable with the Decree of the Council of Nicea II regarding ecclesiastical tradition (Denzinger 308), and Canon XIII (a dogmatic canon) of Session VII of the Holy Council of Trent.
In addition, the order contained in your Precept appears to (a) deny the Catholic priest’s legitimate right to offer the Extraordinary Formof the Roman Rite (presumably, exclusively) as expressed in Summorum Pontificum Art. 1, and (b) dismiss Summorum PontificumArt. 1, “the Roman Missal promulgated by St. Pius V . . . must be given due honor for its venerable and ancient usage.” Finally, from the pastoral perspective, your order appears to disregard the expressed needs and good of the faithful of Presidio/Shafter, who are specifically requesting parish life based on the Traditional Latin Mass.
As I wrote to you in my July 1, 2014, letter, as a priest of the Diocese of El Paso, I am committed to do my very best to spiritually nourish, teach, and serve the souls placed under my care. However, I cannot do this apart from what has always been the lex orandi, lex credendiof Holy Mother Church. Thus, with respect to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and the celebration of the Sacraments, it is not a matter of “preference” or my “unwillingness” to obey; rather, there are all-important ecclesial, theological, liturgical, spiritual, ascetical, and pastoral reasons which compel me, in conscience, to offer the Traditional Latin Mass exclusively.
[Unfortunately, Pope Benedict XVI never addressed this situation, of a former NO priest exclusively offering the TLM, directly in Summorum Pontificum and Universae Ecclesiae. As such, many bishops continue to pretend that the TLM was abrogated in 1970 by Paul VI and requires special permission, or conditions, to be offered. This is plainly against the spirit of Benedict XVI’s documents, and against his clear statement that the TLM was not, nor ever could be, abrogated. As a valid Rite, the priest should have the option, based on his pastoral reality, to offer the TLM exclusively, even if not a member of an Ecclesia Dei community. But because that point was never specifically addressed, it is viewed as a matter of opinion, at this time, since virtually the entire hierarchy has chosen to jettison the entirety of the pre-conciliar Magisterium as a practical reality in the day to day operation of the Church. Thus, Father’s very well supported arguments from pre-conciliar sources are simply rejected out of hand.]
In the end, I had to follow what Holy Mother Church has always taught. Out of fidelity to God and to the Church’s immemorial lex orandi, lex credendi, and for the good of the souls entrusted to my care, I could not, in conscience, follow the specific liturgical directive given by my Bishop. [I have very strong sympathy for the conclusion Father has reached. He feels in conscience he cannot offer the Novus Ordo any more. Some may feel that he is failing in obedience. That’s not my take, but I understand it. I see in this action by Bishop Seitz, especially with regard to the demand not to offer Mass Ad Orientem, as unjust and an abuse of power. The situation regarding the TLM is perhaps arguable (though I strongly side with Father on this), but insisting that a priest MUST face the people at Mass is totally unjustifiable, to my knowledge.]
Effective November 10, 2014, my Bishop revoked my appointment as Administrator of Sacred Heart Mission. I was unable to hold back my tears during the final Holy Sacrifice of the Mass which I offered in Shafter, TX, on Sunday, November 9, 2014. With a sorrowful heart and plenteous tears, I prayed the words of blessed Job, “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away, as it hath pleased the Lord so it is done. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21)
I begged my Bishop for a minimum one-year sabbatical, in order to have ample time to pray, study, reflect, go on an extended retreat, and discern God’s will for my future. He refused, and instead gave me only six months, and restricted the use of my priestly faculties. Eventually, he extended my sabbatical to August 31, 2015.
At the beginning of October 2015, my Bishop initiated a canonical process to determine whether or not I have committed a Delict against Ecclesiastical Authority (i.e. disobedience). Currently, I await whatever decision he may make. If necessary, I am prepared to appeal to Rome. I am under no illusion that Rome will intervene to do what is right and just, but at least by appealing, I will know, in conscience, that I went to heroic lengths in the practice of obedience by following the juridical process instituted by the Church for recourse against the abuse of power.
At present, I continue to discern God’s will for the future of my priesthood. What is Thy will, O Lord? What wilt Thou have me to do? (Acts 9:6) In spite of some very difficult trials over the past four years, I am in awe of God’s goodness, mercy, and mysterious ways.
Father then goes on to address how he’s like this situation resolved. The answers are obvious, but Father is very realistic about where he stands.
Please pray for him. He’s a very good priest who found himself in a nigh impossible situation. It is such a tragedy that this has occurred. I don’t want to pontificate too much on his situation, he just really needs prayers at this point. The future will take care of itself.
As a corollary to the previous post, why has a revolution overtaken the Church? One prime reason, among many, is lack of love for our Eucharistic Lord. That love can certainly be expressed by pious, loving reception of the Blessed Sacrament at Mass, but if one only conversed with one’s spouse for less than one hour a week, would that relationship blossom? As Fr. Lasance notes below, we should commune with Our Eucharistic Lord much more frequently, not only in formal times of Adoration but also when the Blessed Sacrament is reposed in the tabernacle.
That is a great gift Holy Mother Church gives her children, something the protestant, and even the Orthodox, do not have. The Orthodox do not reserve the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle. I dropped by a very small, but beautiful, Byzantine Catholic church this past weekend, and was told by the priest that there is no reserved Host, that they confect and consume the Blessed Sacrament during the Liturgy. This has long been Eastern practice.
Anyway, Fr. Lasance:
It was only granted to a few chosen souls to know Jesus Christ in His hidden life. His holy Mother and His foster-father St. Joseph knew Him; the family of St. Elizabeth knew Him; and the relatives and friends of the shepherds who went to adore Him in the stable at Bethlehem knew Him. But with the exception of these pious persons Our Lord was unknown to the world at large. Yet the greater number of Jews believed in the future Messias and desired to see Him. They entertained the idea of a promised Redeemer Who was to come, but they looked no further.
In the present day it is the same in regard to Jesus Christ dwelling amongst us in the Blessed Sacrament. He is unknown to the great majority of men, as He was at Bethlehem. Too many professing Christians have no practical knowledge of the Holy Eucharist. [Boy if that was true back then, can you imagine what Fr. Lasance would think today? Most Catholics, even those who assist at Mass regularly, view the Blessed Sacrament not as the Real Presence, but, in protestant fashion, as a symbol. Of course, the new Mass was deliberately changed to excise all possible references to the Real Presence. And that was a very substantial reason why Bugnini wanted to abrogate the Canon (“Eucharistic Prayer I”), but was not allowed to do so, in a rare moment of sanity. But, practically speaking, outside of a few parishes, the Canon is never prayed at the Mass]
If St. John the Baptist were to return to earth, into how many parishes might he not go, and, pointing to the tabernacle, say to the people: “There hath stood One in the midst of you Whom you know not” (Jn i:26). If you knew Him you would think of Him, you would come to visit Him. In like manner, St. John the Evangelist might repeat the same words in the present day that he wrote in the earliest ages of Christianity: “He came into His own, and His own received Him not” (Jn i:11).
Yes, we cannot but say with sorrow: Jesus, living in the Sacrament of His love, is unknown, is a stranger; and we must, alas, add that He is not loved.
“Where your treasure is,” Our Lord says, “there also will your heart be” (Lk xii:34). Is Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament the treasure of many hearts?
The mind generally acts in accordance with the affections of the heart. A mother separated from her son frequently thinks of him……Why does that mother’s heart dwell with her absent child? It is because she loves him.
Would you know for certain, O Christian souls, whether you really love Jesus Christ abiding in the Holy Eucharist? Ask yourself whether the remembrance of that Prisoner of Love is often present to your mind. If it is so, you have reason to rejoice, for your heart beats in unison with the Heart of Jesus. But if – which God forbid – you never think of the Divine Guest dwelling in the tabernacle, we are obliged, however sorrowfully, to tell you that you do not love Him. [That’s really something to meditate on]
Alas, how small is the number of Christians who think of Our Lord Jesus Christ present in the Blessed Sacrament! How small the number of those who in their daily pursuits bear in mind the God of love!
It may perhaps be urged that this teaching is above ordinary Christians, that they cannot occupy themselves with the thought of Our Lord in the sacred Host as religious do. To those who are inclined to put forward this objection, we reply by referring them to the Council of Trent. It is the wish of the sacred Council that the faithful should communicate at every Mass, not merely spiritually, but by sacramental reception of the Holy Eucharist.
If they desired [thusly]……….would they not be equally desirous that Christian people should think, sometimes at least, of Our Lord Jesus Christ, Who deigns to dwell among us under the Eucharistic veil?
The mere thought of the love of Jesus for man moved St. Francis of Assisi to tears, and when he was asked why he wept, he answered: “Love is not known, love is not loved!”
I haven’t really anything to add, other than that I need to spend much more time with Our Lord! I am going to make it a point this Septuagesima and Lent to spend much more time before the Blessed Sacrament, either in formal Adoration or simply before the tabernacle.
May God make it so!
How can ecumenism be reconciled with St. Paul and the entire pre-conciliar Magisterium? February 3, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, Basics, catachesis, different religion, disaster, Ecumenism, episcopate, error, General Catholic, horror, Papa, Revolution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, suicide, the struggle for the Church.
Older Catholics will tell you, they remember a day when it was clearly taught that to even step foot in a protestant church was a mortal sin. Participating in the kind of “joint ecumenical service” that Francis – and he is not the first post-conciliar pope to do so – would have been utterly unthinkable. The mind of the Church was guided by St. Paul’s 2nd Letter to the Corinthians:
Bear not the yoke together with unbelievers. For what participation hath justice with injustice? Or what fellowship hath light with darkness?
And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath the faithful with the unbeliever?
And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? *For you are the temple of the living God: as God saith: **I will dwell in them, and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Wherefore, go out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing:
Pope Pius XI taught that Catholics were forbidden to engage in liturgical celebrations with protestants, and in doing so he was only reiterating what the Church had clearly taught for some 350 years. The post-conciliar Church has most frequently tried to pretend that protestants and Catholics both belong to some “invisible church” consisting of “believers” (usually reduced to a shared baptism), but this kind of thinking was rejected by numerous pre-conciliar popes. Thus very clear statements such as those by St. Paul, which served as justification for “fundamentalists” like Saint Athanasius to have no contact with, and to give no recognition to, even the heretical Arian “Catholics” of his day. St. Basil stated that the faithful should even go into the desert to offer Mass, rather than participate in the liturgies of the heretics of those days.
And yet here we are, 2000 years later, after a completely novel council, the first ever in the history of the Church to proclaim no dogma and declare no anathemas, with a radically changed mindset, a mindset that much more plays to worldly thinking and approval than to the constant belief and practice of the faith.
50 years ago, in the immediate wake of Vatican II, there was a great outburst of ecumenical efforts. Thank God, those efforts largely subsided under the previous two pontificates (obviously, there were some scandalous exceptions, like Assisi), but they have come roaring back under Francis and especially in this run up to the 500th anniversary of the outbreak of the protestant heresy cum revolution. It must be remembered that many leading lights at Vatican II were scandalous in their acceptance of protestant belief, from Congar to Bugnini, who felt that in many cases the protestants had got in more right than the early Church Fathers directly informed by the Apostles. Congar reverenced Luther greatly, and Bugnini desired to create a Mass so bowdlerized of Catholic content that it would never be offensive to protestants.
Michael Matt and Christopher Ferrara have a valuable video on this subject below. I found it providential that I read a biblical verse with a note that pointed me to II Cor vi:14-17 just hours before I saw this video show up in my Youtube feed. I especially like the early reference Matt makes to St. Thomas More and his excoriation of protestants for loathing order and seeking to create a society based on disorder and the triumph of the will (which, perhaps, makes subsequent German history rather less than surprising).
Some more important points regarding the below. I have already reported on the disturbingly pro-protestant nature of elements of this joint “liturgy” composed by uber-liberal Catholics in the Congregation for Christian Unity and the Lutheran World Federation. As Matt notes below, this Federation is exceedingly modernist/liberal in and of itself, and is rejected by more conservative Lutheran bodies like the Missouri Synod. So what this amounts to is a self-congratulatory confab of progressives in the two bodies patting themselves on the back for their progressive beliefs. But such has been the practical nature of the ecumenical movement since its inception, it’s far more about confirming progressives in their beliefs than it is concern for souls, arriving at the truth, or, most especially, conversion:
Is it too much saying that Francis is trying to destroy the Church, or complete its destruction? As I said, these kinds of things have gone on for years, though not always with such fanfare, with such high-level participants, or with as much significance as the quincentenary portends.
Having said all that, I plan, for a time, to start ignoring the many problematic statements emanating from the Vatican, and limit myself to discussion/analysis of actions. At this point, I think we, who pray we adhere to what the Church has always believed, know who and what this man is. We know his penchant for highly destructive rhetoric. To some degree, reporting on that is feeling like repetitive non-news (water is wet), and I also need to do so to preserve my own faith and sanity. This planned confab with Lutheran heretics, and modernist ones at that, is a concrete act of such monumental significance that it does merit a good deal of coverage. I pray somehow, by some miracle, there may be an end to all this, but I won’t hold my breath.
I think it important to stress that the ecumenical/interreligious dialogue movements are radically counter to the Church’s pre-conciliar approach, and serve as one of the prime indicators that the Council, no matter what was intended (those arguments are endless, and quite possibly were intended to be), ushered in an era where practice, and belief, was irreconcilable with the Catholic ethos before 1962. That’s the take-home point.
A couple of quick items. I posted a while back about the mysterious death of a prominent Chinese priest and the fear many Chinese Catholics – including Cardinal Zen – fear of being sold out in the Vatican-Chinese negotiations, and now there are further reports of Chinese persecution of Christians. Is China unusual (yes), or is it simply in the vanguard of how progressive regimes, given the chance, would treat Christians generally?
…….The Chinese government has just arrested the pastor of China’s largest official Protestant church, as Time reports:
Pastor Gu Yuese, also known as Joseph Gu, was placed under “residential surveillance in a designated location” — the official term for facilities known more commonly as “black jails” — in the city of Hangzhou last Thursday, according to U.S.-based Christian rights group China Aid.
Gu, who headed Hangzhou’s prominent Chongyi Church, was reportedly removed from his post by China’s Three-Self Patriotic Movement (TSPM), the Chinese Communist Party–sanctioned authority that regulates churches, 10 days prior to his detention. He had been vocal in his opposition to the government’s destruction of crosses atop church buildings in China’s Christian-dominated eastern province of Zhejiang, a campaign that began in 2014.
“His arrest marks a major escalation in the crackdown against those who oppose the forced demolition of crosses,” Bob Fu, president and founder of China Aid, said in a statement. “He will be the highest-ranking national church leader arrested since the Cultural Revolution.”
Pastor Gu’s detention represents the latest development in a dispute between China’s central government and the burgeoning Christian community in Zhejiang Province. In 2013, local authorities began a wide-ranging demolition campaign that was ostensibly aimed at “illegal structures,” most of which turned out to be Christian churches and prominent crosses atop them. An internal government document obtained by the New York Times put the lie to the government’s proclamations of neutrality, as it spells out the provincial government’s intention to “remove crosses at religious activity sites on both sides of expressways, national highways, and provincial highways…Over time and in batches, bring down the crosses from the rooftops to the facade of the buildings.”
So, big shock. But perhaps a needful reminder of how leftist persecution of Christians can progress from attempts to dominate the hierarchy and doctrine, to erasing any public sign of the Christian faith.
Next, kind of dumb, but I found a whimsical site on tumblr that is finally actually worth something. Tumblr is widely known for being a haven of many kooky things – like radical feminists – but here’s a site I can get behind: Polish priests blessing things:
Lots of cassocks.
They bless pretty much anything, including supercomputers:
How Good Friday was celebrated in the Medieval Church February 3, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Christendom, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, history, Latin Mass, Liturgical Year, reading, sanctity, Society, Tradition, true leadership, Virtue.
With Lent and then the Easter Season approaching, I thought it not a bad time to post this excerpt from A Sense of the Sacred: Roman Catholic Worship in the Middle Ages, concerning Good Friday. Suffice it to say, the degree of passionate intensity and deep piety prevalent in the Middle Ages is amazing, and, I think it can be said, serves as a stark contrast to the relative indifference that surrounds this most holy of days in the modern Church.
There are some interesting tidbits and factoids below. From pp. 404-5:
Honorius of Autun: “By the Passion of Christ the four elements are purified, and by the four arms of the Cross, the four quarters of the world are saved. It is for that reason that he is suspended between Heaven and earth, because by His Passion Heaven and earth are united, and the entire world is dedicated a temple to God in His Blood.”
It can be said without exaggeration that on Good Friday the entire medieval Christian world came to a standstill before the Cross and the Holy Sepulcher. The liturgical texts of this period testify to a shared longing to spend every hour of this solemnity with Christ crucified. This can best be seen in a rubric of Cardinal Bernard of Porto’s Ordo officiorum for Rome’s cathedral church of St. John Lateran from about 1140:
And because not one hour of this day is devoid of the Passion of Christ, its fitting remembrance by us for that purpose of meditation should run through the individual hours, such that this entire day we should continually remember and unceasingly meditate upon these things, when he would have borne the spittle, the reproaches, the blows, the slaps, the crown of thorns, the scourges, the Cross, the nails, the gall, the vinegar, the lance, and death.
Benedictine customaries in the tenth century prescribed the recitation of the entire Psalter from beginning to end on Good Friday, following the morning office of Prime, a practice that by the thirteenth century was being observed by the popes and the Roman Curia. The Benedictine customary of Fructuaria, Italy (c. 1085), after prescribing the Good Friday recitation of the Psalter, remarks that the monks should pray “with tears” in order that “He, Who on this day vouchsafed to die for us, may mortify the vices in us and vivify the virtues. As a penance, the Benedictines of 10th century Europe also spent much or all of Good Friday barefoot, a custom that by the twelfth century had spread to the laity. At Italy’s Benedictine abbey of Monte Cassino, the reading on Good Friday morning of the martyrology entry for the following day during the office of Prime, in anticipation of Holy Saturday, announced to the monks: “Saturday; Our Lord rested in the sepulcher,” and was marked by a total prostration “to the earth” by all present.
One thing A Sense of the Sacred makes clear is how early so many of our liturgical traditions date from. For instance, the Palm Sunday Procession of Palms was occurring in Jerusalem in the early 4th century, and may well predate that. Veneration of the Cross on Good Friday started immediately after the finding of the True Cross by St. Helen in the 4th century. There are aspects traceable at least to the 3rd century, including most of the Roman Canon – and I remind that simply because evidence of earlier use does not exist, does not mean it was not done. Liturgical historians have repeatedly found evidence of earlier practice of TLM-type rites than was previously known as study has advanced.
Unfortunately, the earliest Church, after the death of the Apostles, so under pressure from persecution, kept very few written records, or they were lost in the collapse of the Greco-Roman civilization. Monasteries in England had for centuries from Bede the Venerable specialized in maintaining and expanding historical records from ancient times, but almost all of that precious knowledge was lost with Henry VIII’s sack of the monasteries, driven by his insatiable lust for money and……..
A Sense of the Sacred can get pretty dry at times, however. It’s almost more of a textbook than a real sit down and read book. There are golden nuggets throughout, but I find much of the content excessively detailed and a bit repetitive for my taste. What it makes clear in toto, however, is that St. Pius V certainly did not create a new Mass out of whole cloth with his 1570 Missal, but simply rationalized the several minor variations into one formal Rite, which was just the Rite of the Diocese of Rome (and most other places) already extant. Thus, any claims that Paul VI’s completely novel, and unjustifiable, creation of an entirely new Mass was simply a redo of what St. Pius V had done 4 centuries earlier simply will not stand.
There is absolutely no comparison between the two, and that is why it is really best to avoid referring to the TLM as the “Tridentine” Mass, which usage only plays into the hands of the liturgical revolutionaries who try to play upon ignorance in drawing an invalid comparison between circumstances surrounding the creation of the Mass of St. Pius V and the Novus Ordo Missae.
Just who is Bernie Sanders? February 2, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in asshatery, Basics, disaster, foolishness, General Catholic, Revolution, secularism, self-serving, sickness, Society.
Given that Bernie Sanders is now looking like a genuine threat to Hilary Clinton (who only won more delegates in Iowa by winning – get this – 6 consecutive coin tosses), I thought you might like to know a bit more about him. Yes, he’s a boor, yes, he’s a socialist, yes, he’s a radical, but he’s a member of that special breed of radical, you know, the completely unaccomplished malcontent who sits around the den all day, getting high and watching TV on other people’s dimes while whining about capitalism and how the “man” is keeping him down.
……..His family managed to send him to the University of Chicago. Despite a prestigious degree, however, Sanders failed to earn a living, even as an adult. It took him 40 years to collect his first steady paycheck — and it was a government check. [Look, lots of people struggle to find a career. But most people can hold down a steady job. This guy, apparently not. And even with a degree from a prestigious university]
“I never had any money my entire life,” Sanders told Vermont public TV in 1985, after settling into his first real job as mayor of Burlington.
Sanders spent most of his life as an angry radical and agitator who never accomplished much of anything. And yet now he thinks he deserves the power to run your life and your finances — “We will raise taxes;” he confirmed Monday, “yes, we will.” [I have a guy I used to be friends with. Anyway, he sounds a lot like Sander. He was brilliant. Truly intellectually gifted. He got a degree at a prestigious private university, largely paid for by his National Merit Scholarship, could have made a pile of money, but he knew to get started in his chosen field would take a great deal of hard work and some years of not making very much. He didn’t want that. He wanted it all, now, because he was Mr. Gifted, and just deserved it. Also, he wanted to travel and drink and cavort around. And he did. He had a lot of fun for a while. But then he started becoming very negative, very liberal. He had low self-esteem because he knew he had blown both his education and his gifts. He started blaming “the system” and “the 1%” because he had turned 40 years old and was still working occasional entry-level jobs between lavish trips. Everything was somebody else’s fault. He felt – feels – screwed because everyone didn’t recognize his innate brilliance and just hand him a $200k a year job. That’s increasingly common these days]
One of his first jobs was registering people for food stamps, and it was all downhill from there.
Sanders took his first bride to live in a maple sugar shack with a dirt floor, and she soon left him. Penniless, he went on unemployment. Then he had a child out of wedlock. [Remember back when a presidential candidate even being divorced, let alone having a bastard child, would have meant instant disqualification. Now we have this guy, and Trump with his multiple divorces and bragging over bedding married women (among other things). Shows how total the moral collapse in this country has been.] Desperate, he tried carpentry but could barely sink a nail. “He was a shi**y carpenter,” a friend told Politico Magazine. “His carpentry was not going to support him, and didn’t.”
Then he tried his hand freelancing for leftist rags, writing about “masturbation and rape” and other crudities for $50 a story. He drove around in a rusted-out, Bondo-covered VW bug with no working windshield wipers. Friends said he was “always poor” and his “electricity was turned off a lot.” They described him as a slob who kept a messy apartment — and this is what his friends had to say about him.
The only thing he was good at was talking … non-stop … about socialism and how the rich were ripping everybody off. “The whole quality of life in America is based on greed,” the bitter layabout said. “I believe in the redistribution of wealth in this nation.” [It is frightening the degree to which naked advocacy of socialism has become an acceptable political platform in this country. I’m not surprised, though, it’s the natural result of the Left’s long march through the institutions. Nevertheless, if Sanders is by some strange happenstance the democrat candidate, he loses in McGovern-like fashion to any likely Republican. Not only for his extreme beliefs, but because he is a lousy, boring candidate]
So he tried politics, starting his own socialist party. Four times he ran for Vermont public office, and four times he lost — badly. He never attracted more than single-digit support — even in the People’s Republic of Vermont. In his 1971 bid for U.S. Senate, the local press said the 30-year-old “Sanders describes himself as a carpenter who has worked with ‘disturbed children.’ ” In other words, a real winner.
He finally wormed his way into the Senate in 2006…… [the watershed year where popular disgust with the ongoing Iraq war ushered in a flood of radical new democrat candidates. It also laid the groundwork for Obama. Thanks, Bush 43.]
Well…….there you go. One of the top four candidates of the two parties. He will likely win going away in New Hampshire, and then lose in South Carolina (if the polls are any indication). Then follows Nevada and Super Tuesday, but right now Hilary generally holds a lead in most states. Not that I have any interest in seeing her elected, she should already be held in jail pending trial for her massive felonies associated with holding classified information on her “private” e-mail server……among other things.
I was gratified to see Cruz win, though it looks like he’s going to get slaughtered in New Hampshire. I fear Rubio is the stalking horse for the establishment. He did better than expected. Not that I’m sure how much any of this matters at this point, with the nation sinking more and more into an amoral, irreligious abyss. Sorry to be negative, but things don’t exactly look cheery right now.
Sorry if blogging wasn’t so great today. I was pretty distracted.
Fr. Lasance on preparation for Confession February 2, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, reading, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
I got a new (old) book by Fr. Lasance called The Prisoner of Love. I really find great value in these older devotional books (this one dates from about 100 years ago) than the newer ones. The book is focused on being a resource for prayer and meditation during Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, but has some other material for Confession, the Mass, and general prayer outside of church.
I thought some of the material on preparation for Confession was useful, so here it is. Note, I don’t get into the detailed examinen, there are numerous resources available for such. What is below is a prayer and some discourse on how to prepare oneself, on a fundamental level, for making a good confession (all emphasis mine):
Reflect that this confession may be the last of your life. Therefore, prepare yourself for it as if you were lying sick upon your deathbed, and already at the brink of the grave. Ask God to give you the Grace to make a good examination of conscience, the light to see your sins clearly, and the strength to make a sincere confession and to amend your life.
Most merciful God, Father in Heaven, relying on Thy goodness and mercy, I come to Thee with filial confidence to confess my sins and to implore Thy forgiveness. Thou wilt not despise a contrite and humble heart. Bless me and receive me again into Thy favor; I acknowledge that I have been most ungrateful to Thee, but I sincerely repent and detest the wrong I have done, and I desire henceforth to walk in the way of perfection, in accordance with Thy holy will.
O Jesus, my Savior, my good Shepherd, I have strayed far from the path that Thou hast marked out for me; I did not follow in Thy footsteps; I wandered into forbidden places. Repentant and sorrowful, I beg to be admitted again into the fold of Thy faithful followers. I want to confess my sins with perfect sincerity, as if I were at the point of death. My Jesus, I look to Thee with confidence for the Grace to examine my conscience well.
O Holy Spirit, come to Thy mercy; enlighten my mind and strengthen my will that I may know my sins, humbly confess them, and sincerely amend my life.
Mary, my mother, Immaculate Spouse of the Holy Ghost, refuge of sinners, assist me by the intercession.
Holy angels and saints of God, pray for me. Amen.
Examination of Conscience
Begin examining yourself on your last confession: Whether a grievous sin was forgotten through want of proper examination, or concealed or disguised through shame. Whether you confessed without a true sorrow and a firm purpose of amendment. Whether you have repaired evil done to your neighbor. Whether the penance was performed without voluntary distractions. Whether you have neglected your confessor’s counsel, and fallen at once into habitual sin. [Those are all really good recommendations. Priests relate that failure to confess grave sins out of embarrassment is a rampant problem, by virtue of the fact that they have so many souls reveal to them at a last confession that they had failed to confess this sin or that out of shame. DON’T DO IT! Don’t be afraid, the priests have heard everything imaginable. You are not uniquely bad. If yo have some sin you’ve been too afraid to confess, please don’t sit on it. Both Liguori and Aquinas say many souls fall into hell out of sins they were too afraid to confess, which is a timorous sin against the charity of God and reveals secret pride. Also important are performing penance in a focused manner, without distractions, and neglecting counsel. I know I have been lax in some of the penances I have performed]
Then examine yourself on the Ten Commandments, the commandments of the Church, the seven capital sins, the duties of your state of life, and your ruling passion. Calmly recall the different occasions of sin which have fallen in your way, or to which your state and condition in life expose you, the places you have frequented, the persons with whom you have associated. Do not neglect to consider the circumstances which alter the grievousness of the sin, nor the various ways in which we become accessory to the sins of others.
Anyway, maybe some of that is obvious, but I thought the bits on examination and making each confession as if it were your last were good reminders.
Just a thought, are there any “modern” – say, post-conciliar – prayer or devotional books that you consider really good? I have used Fr. Hardon’s Catholic Prayer Book for years but really think some of the older ones are better. But I’m always on the lookout for good resources to recommend, so if you have any thoughts, let me know.
Start Novena for Our Lady of Lourdes today! February 2, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, Domestic Church, General Catholic, Glory, Grace, Interior Life, Novenas, Our Lady, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
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Start Novena to Our Lady of Lourdes today. She Is The Immaculate Conception!
O ever Immaculate Virgin, Mother of Mercy, Health of the Sick, Refuge of Sinners, Comfort to the Afflicted,
you know my wants, my troubles, my sufferings. Deign to cast upon me a look of mercy. By appearing in the Grotto of Lourdes, you were pleased to make it a privileged sanctuary, whence you dispense your favors; and already many sufferers have obtained the cure of their infirmities, both spiritual and corporal.
I come, therefore, with the most unbounded confidence to implore your maternal intercession. Obtain, O loving Mother, the granting of my requests. (mention your intentions here)
Through gratitude for favors, I will endeavor to imitate your virtues that I may one day share your glory.
Our Lady of Lourdes, pray for us. Amen.
(Our Father, Hail Mary, Glory Be.)
Another nice accompanying prayer:
Two prayers to prepare the universal celebration of Our Lady of Lourdes, on February 11
In the often obscure depths of our lives,
in the depth of the world where evil is so powerful,
return our confidence!
Guide us to the source of true life.
Make us pilgrims going forward with your Church,
whet our appetite for the Eucharist,
the bread for the journey, the bread of life.
The Spirit brought about wonders in you, O Mary :
by his power, he has placed you near the Father,
in the glory of your eternal Son.
Look with kindness
on our miserable bodies and hearts.
Shine forth for us, like a gentle light,
at the hour of our death.
Together with Bernadette, we pray to you, O Mary,
as your poor children.
May we enter, like her, into the spirit of the Beatitudes.
Then, we will be able, here below,
begin to know the joy of the Kingdom of Heaven
and sing together with you :
Glory to you, Virgin Mary,
blessed servant of the Lord,
Mother of God,
dwelling place of the Holy Spirit!