Monday, July 20, 2015
Garcia Moreno by Fr. Augustine Berthe
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This message is to thank a reader named Carmen.  I don't have Carmen's email address so I am posting this here. 

For those unfamiliar, Garcia Moreno is arguably the greatest Catholic president in history (i.e. a leader of a democracy).
Dear Carmen, thank you for your kindness of sending me a copy of Garcia Moreno by Fr. Augustine Berthe which was on my Amazon wishlist. I have received the book and am really grateful for your thoughtfulness.  I hope to read this book soon, it is next on my reading list after I finish my current book on the Dominican Order.

May God bless you for your generosity.  I will remember you in my prayers whenever I pray for my benefactors.

I will post a review of this book here after I have read it.
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Thursday, July 16, 2015
What is the Old Catholic Church? Are they Roman Catholic?
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There is a group of individuals who call themselves "Old Catholics."  This group broke off of the Catholic Church before Vatican I and have mixed in protestant thought within what looks like a Traditional Catholic Mass. But they do not offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.  These individuals belong to a group that has been officially condemned as schismatic and heretical.  One such group is present in Chicago, IL.  Look up the "Old Catholic Church" and you will find they are located around the world.

Please visit the two following links in which Fr. Peter Carota devotes time to explain the history and errors of the Old Catholics:
 Photo of His Holiness Pope Pius IX

His Holiness Pope Pius IX has condemned the Old Catholic Movement as heretical and schismatic:

The serious and long-lasting plots and efforts which the new heretics who call themselves Old Catholics use daily in your country to deceive the faithful and to tear them away from their ancient faith, urge Us, as a duty of Our supreme apostolate, to zealously devote Our paternal care and attention to protecting the spiritual welfare of our children. We are aware, and We sorrowfully deplore the fact, that these schismatics and heretics who enjoy the favor of the civil authority exercise the ministry of their wicked sect in the region of the diocese of Basel as in other regions of your country while the religious freedom of Catholics remains publicly oppressed by schismatic laws.

Deceit Characteristic of Schism
2. Having violently occupied parishes and churches with apostate priests, they have not neglected any deception or cunning to lead the children of the Catholic Church into wretched schism. Because it has always been especially characteristic of heretics and schismatics to use lies and deception, these sons of darkness are to be reckoned among those the prophet spoke of: "Woe to you deserting children who have faith in the shadow of Egypt. You have rejected the word and have hoped in trickery and rebellion." They love to deceive the unwary and the innocent and to draw them into error by deception and hypocrisy. They repeatedly state openly that they do not in the least reject the Catholic Church and its visible head but rather that they are zealous for the purity of Catholic doctrine declaring that they are the heirs of the ancient faith and the only true Catholics. But in fact they refuse to acknowledge all the divine prerogatives of the vicar of Christ on earth and do not submit to His supreme magisterium.

Condemnation of Errors

3. In order to spread their teachings more widely, We know that some of them have been appointed to teach sacred theology in the University of Bern, hoping to be able in this way to gain new followers from the Catholic youth for their wicked faction. However, We have already reproved and condemned this deplorable sect which has produced from the old store of the heretics so many errors opposed to the principal tenets of the Catholic faith. This sect overthrows the foundations of the Catholic religion, shamelessly rejects the dogmatic definitions of the Ecumenical Vatican Council, and devotes itself to the ruin of souls in so many ways. We have decreed and declared in Our letter of 21 November 1873 that those unfortunate men who belong to, adhere to, and support that sect should be considered as schismatics and separated from communion with the Church.

4. We think it is Our duty to repeat this public declaration now and to request you to preserve the unity of faith among your faithful by every possible means in accordance with your eminent zeal and your renowned virtue. For you have given notable examples of this virtue in bearing tribulations for the cause of God. You should remind them to beware of these treacherous enemies of the flock of Christ and their poisoned foods. They should totally shun their religious celebrations, their buildings, and their chairs of pestilence which they have with impunity established to transmit the sacred teachings. They should shun their writings and all contact with them. They should not have any dealings or meetings with usurping priests and apostates from the faith who dare to exercise the duties of an ecclesiastical minister without possessing a legitimate mission or any jurisdiction. They should avoid them as strangers and thieves who come only to steal, slay, and destroy. For the Church's children should consider the proper action to preserve the most precious treasure of faith, without which it is impossible to please God, as well as action calculated to achieve the goal of faith, that is the salvation of their souls, by following the straight road of justice.

Anti-Catholic Marriage Laws

5. We recognize that apart from laws which injure the divine constitution and authority of the church, others have also been promulgated there by the civil authority which are totally opposed to the canonical prescriptions dealing with Christian marriage. These laws deeply oppose the authority and the jurisdiction of the Church. We are obliged to exhort you in the Lord to explain to your faithful by suitable instructions. Recall to their minds those truths which We have often stressed in Our apostolic letters or allocutions concerning this sacrament especially on 9 and 27 September 1852. We endeavored to give them a thorough appreciation of the sanctity and the power of marriage to enable them by pious conformity to the canonical laws in this matter, to avoid the evils which affect families and human society in consequence of contempt for the sanctity of marriage.

6. We are very confident in the Lord, beloved sons, pastors, and clerics, that you, who have been ordained not only for your own sanctification and salvation but also for that of others, in face of this huge conspiracy of the unholy and of so many dangerous allurements will prove yourselves a strong comfort and help to your bishops because of your demonstrated piety and zeal. Under their leadership, you will eagerly take up the task of diligently working for the cause of God, for the Church, and for the salvation of souls. You will strengthen the powers of the faithful who stand firm, assist the weakness of those who falter, and increase daily before God the merits which you have already attained by patience, constancy, and priestly fortitude. The labors which those who act as ambassadors of Christ must sustain are very heavy at this time. But our trust should be placed in Him who has conquered the world. He helps those who labor in His name and rewards them with a crown of unfading glory in heaven.

Obedience to Lawful Authority

7. Dearly beloved faithful children who live in Switzerland, We Speak to you with paternal affection in Our concern for your salvation. You know very well how precious is the gift of the Catholic faith which God has bestowed upon you. Never spare any care, any effort to faithfully preserve that gift. Preserve safe and sound the glory of the ancient religion which you received from your ancestors. Therefore, We urge you with the greatest enthusiasm to give support strongly and constantly to your legitimate shepherds who have received a legitimate mission from this Apostolic See. They watch over your souls since they will have to account to God for them. Listen obediently to their voices and keep in mind the words of eternal truth which Jesus spoke: "Whoever is not with me is against me; whoever does not gather with me scatters." Be obedient to His teaching. Love His easy yoke. Reject energetically those of whom Our Redeemer said: "Beware of the false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing. On the inside however they are ravening wolves." Therefore strong in the faith, resist the ancient

enemy of the human face "until the right arm of Almighty God destroys all the weapons of the devil who is allowed a certain scope of action only in order to give Christ's faithful greater glory by his defeat . . . because where truth is the teacher, divine comfort is never lacking."[1]

Prayer for Quiet

8. We thought We should write these things to you because the duty of Our supreme ministry requires Us to deliver the universal flock of Christ from every danger of deception and to watch over its safety as well as the unity of the faith and of the Church. Therefore, since every good gift and every perfect gift comes down from above from the father of lights, We pray to Him from the bottom of Our heart that He strengthen your power in the struggle and defend you with His help and protection. May He look favorable on your country until when the errors and the counsels of the impious have been destroyed, it enjoys the tranquil peace of truth and justice. We do not neglect to implore the light from above for the wretched people who have gone astray. May they cease storing up wrath for themselves in the day of wrath and revelation of the just judgment of God. May they turn from the error of their ways while there is still time given to them for sincere repentance. Venerable brothers and dearly beloved children, join your fervent prayers of Ours to obtain mercy and find grace in suitable aid. Receive the apostolic blessing which We impart to you lovingly in the Lord from the bottom of Our heart. We grant it to each and every one of you as a pledge of our special love.

Given at Rome, at St. Peter's, on the 23rd day of March 1875, the twenty-ninth year of Our Pontificate.
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Devotion to the Holy Face: A Devotion Needed in our Times
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A few days ago I was contacted by a reader of this blog who shared with me information on the Holy Face Devotion.  As this devotion has fallen into such disuse since Vatican II.  Quoting from the email I received:
Per some of your articles, especially on Fatima, might you also know of the established Holy Face Confraternity? There is one near you in Clintontownship, MI at the Discalced Carmelite monastery. The Archconfraternity is in Tours, France.

This fully approved apostolate of the Church is one of its best kept secrets, and yet it was established by Our Lord to make reparation for blasphemy and combat the evils of communism, something which Our Lady of Fatima warned about, i.e. the "errors of Russia."

This work of reparation and devotion seems to be deemed pre-Vatican II and relegated to the 19th century, but if there was a century more in need of this work of reparation, it is the 21st century.

The following is taken directly from HolyFaceDevotion.com.  Please visit the site for more information and please help to spread awareness of this devotion.

Have you heard about the devotion of reparation to the Holy Face of Jesus? It is a devotion that was first heard of through a Carmelite Nun named Sister Mary of St. Peter in France, 1844, who stated Our Lord revealed this devotion to her at Mount Carmel. Sister Mary of St. Peter stated that Our Lord wanted this devotion to be spread throughout the world with the goal of making reparation for the sins which offend God.

When a man named Leo Dupont took this devotion and started practicing it privately in his home nearby, repeated first class miracles started occurring, which lasted for a period of over 30 years! This immediately became the talk of France, and attracted the attention of the Catholic Church, who investigated and publicly recognized the miracles as authentic. These miracles attest to the authenticity of the revelations from Our Lord to Sister Mary of St. Peter.

In 1885, to bring attention to the importance of this devotion, Pope Leo XIII established this special devotion as an Archconfraternity; and contrary to custom, He immediately established it for the ENTIRE WORLD. Note that numerous indulgences have been granted from several Popes, including Pope Pius IX and Pope Leo XIII, to those devoted to Devotion to the Holy Face of Jesus. Here are copies of the actual papal briefs by Pope Leo XIII in 1885:

First Papal Brief (December 16, 1884)
Second Papal Brief (April 22nd, 1885)
Third Papal Brief (October 1, 1885)
Indulgences Granted by Pope Leo XIII

Note that Saint Therese of Lisieux was also very dedicated to this devotion, which prompted to take the name, "Therese of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face". This devotion was universally practiced before World War I but unfortunately, has since become scarcely known. This website has been created in an attempt to revive this important devotion.
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Monday, July 13, 2015
98th Anniversary of the Secret of Fatima
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Today marks the 98th Anniversary of when Our Lady of the Rosary, appearing at Fatima, revealed the Secret of Fatima to Lucia, Jacinta, and Francisco. The Secret consisted of three parts. In the First Part, she revealed hell, and how many souls go there because no one prays for them. In the Second Part, she revealed her desire to have Russia consecrated to her Immaculate Heart and that if this was not done, there would be worse wars, Russia would spread her errors across the world, and various nations would be annihilated. 

The Third Part of the Secret consists of two parts, a vision (which all; three children saw) and words of the Virgin Mary (which Francisco did not hear, but they were permitted to share with him). This Third Secret was supposed to be revealed in 1960 by the Pope, but he chose not to do so. Half of the Third Secret, the Vision portion, was finally revealed in 2000. However, to this day, the Words of the Virgin - which constitute a terrible message of warning for mankind and especially for the Church - have still not been revealed.

For more information on Fatima and the apparitions there, please click here for my prior article on the topic.

At Fatima, the Ever-Virgin and Blessed Mother of God requested that we pray the Rosary every day (at least five decades), that all Catholics practice the First Saturday devotion, and that the Holy Father consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart.

Sadly, few Catholics are responding to her request faithfully and Russia remains unconsecrated. She promised our world and the pope would suffer much if we were disobedient, but that there would be peace if (when) this was done. Let us do our part, being faithful to Our Lady's request and doing our best to promote the Message of Fatima.

Please consider purchasing from the St. Vincent Ferrer Foundation of the Message of Our Lady of Fatima by Fr. Rodriguez and a seven CD class on Our Lady of Fatima. I also recommend William Thomas Walsh's classic book, Our Lady of Fatima, written in 1954 after he personally interviewed Sr. Lucia.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!

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Friday, July 10, 2015
Seven Holy Brothers
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Semidouble (1955 Calendar): July 10

Taken from the Roman Martyrology's July 10th entry, in part it states:
At Rome, the martyrdom of the seven holy brothers, sons of the saintly martyr Felicitas. They are Januarius, Felix, Philip, Sylvanus, Alexander, Vitalis, and Martial. They died in the time of Emperor Antoninus, under Publius, prefect of the city. Januarius, after being scourged with rods and detained in prison, died from the blows inflicted with leaded whips. Felix and Philip were scourged to death. Sylvanus was thrown headlong from a great height. Alexander, Vitalis, and Martial were beheaded.
The Seven Holy Brothers whose traditional feast is celebrated today serve as an awe inspiring example for us living in a world that has revolted against God and His Divine Laws.  How many of us would be willing to publicly set aside our Faith rather than face a brutal and torturous death?
Junius the Prefect was unsuccessful in winning them from their determination by promises and threats, and so they were afflicted with various tortures. Protected by Angels, they persevered in their holy resolution, and they were finally beheaded at the tenth milestone on the Aurelian Way. Their bodies were buried by the matron Plautilla on her estate outside the City and later laid in the Basilica of Constantine near the baptistery. 1960 Roman Breviary
It is common for us to view the martyrs in a very lofty sense.  We see in them great examples of men and women who declare, "I will not deny God.  And for this I am willing to die."  But the choices that a martyr are forced to make are excruciatingly difficult.  Would we do the same?

In the persecution of the early 20th century in Mexico, the atheistic government murdered many Catholics - including small children.  The children were told to publicly deny Jesus and live.  They were even told, "You don't have to believe it.  Just say the words.  They are only words.  They don't matter.  Just say what we want you to say and then you can live." But they knew that words are more than a mere repetition of sounds.  They mean something when they are said.  So they suffered cruel deaths - sometimes their feet were cut open by a knife and they had to walk for miles while bleeding and in horrible pain until they died.  Would we have the Faith of these children to refuse to say words against Christ and His Church?

Have we considered St. Maria Goretti's example more completely in light of this?  How many people today would welcome and even enjoy the possibility of having fornication with others?  How many would willingly do this.  And yet St. Maria Goretti refused to consent to these same acts - and for that she was repeatedly stabbed until she died.  Do we have that Faith?

Or do we have the courage to stand like St. Thomas More did against the government when it attacks the Faith and the family?  Do we have the courage to defend Holy Matrimony and refuse to accept the civil divorces of our friends and family?  St. Thomas More, one of the highest ranking members in the government, willingly lost all of his eternal possessions, honors, and even his life rather than accepting a divorce.  Would we fight for this?  Would we be willing to fight against the abuses of annulments today or the attacks that the liberal government wages on the Truths of the Faith?  Would we willingly die for this and leave behind our friends and family like St. Thomas More left behind his lovely daughter, Margaret?

The martyrs we celebrate today, the sons of St. Felicity, gave up all that they had for the Faith.  And all the martyrs show us extraordinary courage.  It is not easy.  We may think that if liberal Catholics are ok with offering a bowl of incense to a pagan statue in a Hindu temple then it is acceptable. We may think it's not worth fighting over - much less perishing over.

But the First Commandment is clear, as is the greatest Commandment: "You shall love the Lord thy God with thy whole mind and strength."  And the only way to do this is to reject all false, non-Catholic religions, and cleave to revealed Catholic Truth.  It is not easy.  In the midst of the suffering it is not always clear if we do the right thing.  But with a firmness we must pray for the courage to hold fast to the end - to the last drop of our blood - and if we do this, we will win the crown of Martyrdom and earn an inheritance in Heaven that will not perish and far outshines any earthly honor.  We must refuse to enter non-Catholic places of worship.  We must refuse to pray with heretics, schismatics, or pagans.  We must refuse to participate in non-Catholic weddings or funerals.  It is not easy to remain faithful to the First Commandment today because so few people in the Church today are willing to do this.  We hear scandals of bishops praying with protestants or asking for their blessings!  We are right to be scandalized.  But we should pray in these instances for us to have the courage to persevere.  And for those who do sin - let us pray for their conversions and make satisfaction for their sins to Almighty God who demands justice.

May the Seven Holy Brothers pray for us and our leaders in the Church and in the secular governments.  May all of of have the courage to live as martyrs.  Kyrie eleison!

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Collectible Catholic Books for Sale: Round 9
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I'm pleased to be offering the following older/collectible Catholic books for sale.  The price for each one is $18 which includes shipping and handling (unless the price is otherwise noted below).

If you are interested in any of these, please contact me at acatholiclife[at]gmail[dot]com.

"Popular Sermons on the Catechism," Vol I-III, Bamberg and Thurston, 400+ pp each volume.  $45/set

"Faith of Our Fathers," John Cardinal Gibbons, 1914

"Faith of Our Fathers," Cardinal Gibbons, 1900, limited autographed edition. $40

"Christ or Chaos," Scott, SJ, 267 pp., 1924

"Catholic Doctrine," Byrne, 402 pp., 1892

"Exposition of Christian Doctrine," Pt II, by "a Professor" 620 pp., 1919

"Two Arguments for Catholicism," Eymieu, 203 pp., 1927

"The Ministry of Catechising," Bp. Dupanloup, 612 pp., 1868, $12

"Theory and Practice of the Catechism," Gatterer et al, 389 pp., 1914

"The Catholic's Ready Answer," Hill, SJ, 476 pp. 1915, Benziger publ.
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Tuesday, July 7, 2015
8th Anniversary of Summorum Pontificum
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Today the Church observes the 8th anniversary of the publishing of Summorum Pontificum, the long-awaited motu proprio of Pope Benedict XVI replacing all former "indults" and declaring that the Tridentine Latin Mass was never abrogated and all priests had the right to offer this Mass at any time, in public or private, without any "permission" from a bishop.

Called the Mass of the Ages, the Most Beautiful Thing This Side of Heaven, the Mass of Blessed John XXIII, the Tridentine Latin Mass, and most recently, the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, this Mass truly is one of the most beautiful forms of worship for the Catholic Church. Below are links concerning the Tridentine Mass. On July 7, 2007, the motu proprio by Pope Benedict XVI, Summorum Pontificum, was issued and thereby allowed a wider usage of the Sacraments according to the 1962 Missal.

After years of waiting, finally on July 7, 2007, the motu proprio, Summorum Pontificum, allowing a wider usage of the Sacraments according to the 1962 Missal was published. Pope Benedict has an official letter to the Bishops on the topic of this motu proprio.

Visit the Vatican's website for the Latin text of the actual motu proprio. In essence, the document affirmed that the Tridentine Mass – the way that the Mass was celebrated for centuries leading up to the 2nd Vatican Council – was never abrogated and such can and should still be said. The text of the document can be found under the Catechism References in today’s lesson.

Quoting from the text, pay particular attention to the following line by His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI: "It is, therefore, permissible to celebrate the Sacrifice of the Mass following the typical edition of the Roman Missal promulgated by John XXIII in 1962 and never abrogated, as an extraordinary form of the Liturgy of the Church"

Every action of the priest in the Tridentine Mass – unlike in the Novus Ordo – is regulated by established laws.  The single greatest source of these rules in the English language is The Celebration of Mass: A Study of the Rubrics of the Roman Missal available for purchase online.  The Tridentine Mass truly made it possible for Catholics to attend a uniform Mass anywhere in the world.  If you were in Rome, China, America, etc you would truly have seen and heard Mass in the same manner, which unfortunately is not the case today.

One common complaint against the Traditional Latin Mass is that the priest faces “away” from the people.  In all actuality, this is incorrect.  The priest faces in the same direction “with” the people.  It is the priest who stands before the people as He faces our Lord – truly present before Him in the tabernacle.  This is the ancient way of saying Mass and has been done for centuries.

The priest faces “ad orientem” meaning that he faces Eastward, which is theologically important because that is the direction from which the Sun rises.  Jesus Christ, the Sun that never sets, will one day come again from the East.  The ad orientem orientation is opposed to that called versus populum, in which the celebrating priest faces the people.  In 7th century England, Catholic churches were built so that on the very feast day of the saint in whose honor they were named, Mass could be offered on an altar while directly facing the rising sun (Andrew Louth, "The Body in Western Catholic Christianity," in Religion and the Body, ed. by Sarah Coakley, Cambridge, 2007 p 120). 

On 13 January 2008, Pope Benedict XVI publicly celebrated Mass in the Sistine Chapel ad orientem.  He celebrated Mass facing the altar in the Sistine Chapel annually for the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord.

“... When a general leads his troops into battle does he face them? When a representative of the people approaches the Ruler on their behalf does he face them? When a priest is going to the Lord on behalf of his people should he face them? When the priest is acting as the intermediary between the people and God he faces the Altar. When he is dispensing the gifts of God, or speaking to the people, he faces the people” (Fr. Joseph Santos of the Diocese of Providence, Rhode Island).

David Martin is the author ofVatican II: A Historic Turning Point.  He appeared in a Guest Column on the Remnant Newspaper on the important topic of "Turning the Altars Away from Facing God".  We quote below from his piece. 

In contemplating the spiritual blight of these last times, due consideration must be given to the liturgical reform of Vatican II since this was the hub that set into motion a new order of liturgical chaos that has all but extinguished the Faith and bedimmed the planet.

Christ gave us His Church that it might be a light to the nations signified by the Latin word, Lumen Gentium. The light of tradition emanating from the old Latin Mass is that Lumen Gentium wherewith to attract the world to Christ, but by removing this after the Council the church lapsed into a spiritual eclipse that has since scattered the flock and left the world in the dark, fulfilling the prophesy of Our Lady at La Salette: "The Church will be in eclipse, the world will be in dismay." (1846)

That is to say, the political and sociological debacle of our time is really a crisis of Faith, which means the solution to the crisis rests on the shoulders of the Catholic hierarchy. If the Church were in good shape as in former times, it would again be a powerful beacon to dispel the darkness and illuminate the nations, but as it stands the agents of darkness are having a field day and are overshadowing the Faith because the light of True Faith is merely flickering today because poor liturgical practice.

The very crux of the problem has been the practice of having the priest say Mass facing the people (versus populum), since it has brought about a shift of focus where the emphasis today is on the community instead of on God. According to Monsignor Klaus Gamber whom Cardinal Ratzinger [The future Pope Benedict XVI] proclaimed as a prophet for our time, the turning around of the altars after Vatican II was the most destructive of the post-conciliar reforms, citing that "there is no basis for it in liturgical history, nor theology, nor sociologically." He points out that "changes in the traditional liturgy also mean a change of faith itself" and goes on to say..
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Thursday, July 2, 2015
What Does "Son of God" Mean? How is Jesus the "Son of God"?
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There is a pernicious error present in our world amongst those outside of the Church, who claim that Jesus Christ is the "Son of God" and that means He is not God Himself.  This blasphemous error attacks the very core of what we profess: belief in the Holy Trinity. 

Is Jesus Christ truly and really God?  Yes, He is.  But is He also the "Son of God"?  Yes, He is.  Then what do we mean when we say He is the Son of God if He is God?  Let's explore this now so as to refute those who are in error.

The Catholic Encyclopedia entry on "Son of God" serves as a good basis:
The title "son of God" is frequent in the Old Testament. The word "son" was employed among the Semites to signify not only filiation, but other close connexion or intimate relationship...The title "son of God" was applied in the Old Testament to persons having any special relationship with God. Angels, just and pious men, the descendants of Seth, were called "sons of God" (Job 1:6; 2:1; Psalm 89:7; Wisdom 2:13; etc.). In a similar manner it was given to Israelites (Deuteronomy 14:50); and of Israel, as a nation, we read: "And thou shalt say to him: Thus saith the Lord: Israel is my son, my firstborn. I have said to thee: Let my son go, that he may serve me" (Exodus 4:22 sq.).

The title "the Son of God" is frequently applied to Jesus Christ in the Gospels and Epistles. In the latter it is everywhere employed as a short formula for expressing His Divinity (Sanday); and this usage throws light on the meaning to be attached to it in many passages of the Gospels. The angel announced: "He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the most High... the Holy which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God" (Luke 1:32, 35). Nathaniel, at his first meeting, called Him the Son of God (John 1:49). The devils called Him by the same name, the Jews ironically, and the Apostles after He quelled the storm. In all these cases its meaning was equivalent to the Messias, at least. But much more is implied in the confession of St. Peter, the testimony of the Father, and the words of Jesus Christ.
And so we see the title "Son of God" is not meant to refer to filiation in that Jesus is the Son of a Father and not equal to the Father in the way that I might be called the son of my earthly father.  Rather, His title of "Son of God" is rather meant to express His Divinity and show His inseparable connection with His Heavenly Father, the 1st Person of the Blessed Trinity.

So the next time you hear someone erroneous claim that Jesus Christ is not God since He is the "Son of God," all you need to do is refute the errors using Scripture as your guide.  Remember, the errors of Arianism which claim that Jesus is not God are still very much around yet to this day.  For good measure, be sure you understand the basic Theology of the Holy Trinity.
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Tuesday, June 30, 2015
The Year of Mercy: What is Mercy?
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With the announcement of a Year of Mercy by Pope Francis, we should start by asking ourselves "what is mercy?"  And let us follow up that question with another: "what does mercy require of me?"  Far too many think mercy is a nothing more than a complacency with sin in practice: "God loves me.  I am forgiven.  I can go and not feel bad about my sins."

On the contrary, true mercy is found in prayer and penance.  It is found in our spiritual works of mercy: admonishing sinners to repent, go to Confession, and reunite themselves with the Sacraments.  True mercy is not a "feel good ideal" similar to how the protestants view salvation.  True mercy is inseparable from Catholic notions of penance.

Bishop Fellay in his Letter of May 2015 provided a reflection on True Mercy.  The following an except from that document:
What exactly is [mercy] about? In itself mercy is a word that is dear to the heart of every Catholic, because it designates the most touching manifestation of God’s love for us. In past centuries the apparitions of the Sacred Heart were nothing but a more intense revelation of this mercy of God toward mankind. The same must be said about devotion to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Nevertheless true mercy, which implies this initial, extremely touching movement of God toward the sinner and His misery, continues in a moment of the creature’s conversion to God: “God desires not the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live” (cf. Ezek 33:11). Hence the Gospels insist on the duty of conversion, renunciation and penance.  Our Lord went so far as to say: “Unless you do penance, you shall all perish” (cf. Lk 13:5).

This call to conversion is the heart of the Gospel, which we find in St. John the Baptist as well as in St. Peter. When sinners, touched by preaching, ask what they must do, they hear only this recommendation: “be converted and do penance.” The Blessed Virgin in her apparitions in recent centuries, both in La Salette and in Lourdes or Fatima, says nothing different: “prayer and penance”.

Now the new preachers of a new mercy insist so much on the first step taken by God toward human beings who are lost because of sin, ignorance and misery that they too often omit this second movement, which must come from the creature: repentance, conversion, the rejection of sin. Ultimately, the new mercy is nothing but complacency about sin. God loves you... no matter what.
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Commemoration of St. Paul
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Each year on June 30th, the day after the Feast of Ss. Peter and Paul, the Church liturgically commemorates St. Paul. 

As stated by the great Liturgist Dom Gueranger:
On the twenty-ninth of June, in the year 67, whilst Peter, having crossed the Tiber by the triumphal bridge, was drawing nigh to the cross prepared for him on the Vatican plain, another martyrdom was being consummated on the left bank of the same river. Paul, as he was led along the Ostian Way, was also followed by a group of the faithful who mingled with the escort of the condemned.
His sentence was that he should be beheaded at the Salvian waters. A two miles' march brought the soldiers to a path leading eastwards, by which they led their prisoner to the place fixed upon for his martyrdom. Paul fell on his knees, addressing his last prayer to God; then having bandaged his eyes, he awaited the death-stroke. A soldier brandished his sword, and the apostle's head, as it was severed from the trunk, made three bounds along the ground; three fountains immediately sprang up on these several spots.
Such is the local tradition; and to this day three fountains are to be seen on the site of his martyrdom, over each of which an altar is raised.
 COLLECT PRAYER

O God, You have instructed many nations through the preaching of the blessed apostle Paul. Let the power of his intercession with You help us who venerate his memory this day. Through our Lord...

COMMEMORATION OF SAINT PETER 

O God, You have entrusted the keys of the kingdom of heaven to Your blessed apostle Peter and have given him the power of bishop to bind or to loose. May his intercession free us from the slavery of sin; who lives and rules with God the Father . . .
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Sunday, June 28, 2015
Faces of Christ: Catholic Art Website
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I receive regular updates from the Catholic Artists Society.  Today I received an update worth sharing:
Our latest update: We are now taking donations at the www.Faces-of-Christ.com website or www.Catholic-Artists-Conference.com. With your support now we can make the 100 piece collection U.S. tour of the Faces of Christ from Europe happen in 2016-2017. The conference is a fund raiser and the kick-off to the U.S. tour coming to major cities in the U.S. After Omaha. There will be much media about the subjects discussed at the conference including coverage by EWTN.

We are taking ads in the program to be distributed widely at each tour venue. In addition to Chicago, Washington DC, Denver, Dallas, Pittsburgh, we are looking for venues in San Francisco, New York, Dayton, Hartford, and Philadelphia. Our success depends upon YOU, God Bless.
Please consider supporting the work of this organization to produce and make available truly good (good, true, & beautiful) Catholic art.

One of the beautiful images from the www.Faces-of-Christ.com website is visible at the top of this page.
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Thursday, June 25, 2015
Video: The Traditional Dominican Foundation of Belgium
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As I mentioned previously, I am in the processing of becoming a Third Order Dominican.  The specific community that I will be attached is located in Belgium.

In this video, Fr. Albert, who I know personally, shares some wonderful insight into the spirituality of the Dominican Order.  I share this for those of you who may benefit from knowing more about the mission of St. Dominic's order.

St. Dominic, pray for us!
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To Form Future Priests: The New Seminary Project of the SSPX
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The seminary is all about forming priests. We're a priestly society, we take care of faithful, we take care of parishes, but we need priests to do that.

Of all the projects that we could possibly do in the Society, this new seminary is the most important project.

The formation of the seminarians, which is the formation of the priests, is the formation of the officers of the Church. When you support the formation of the seminarians, you support the building of the Church.

It's fitting, perfectly fitting, that we do all we can, all our best, to build seminaries, and to form vocations, to form future priests, the future of the Church.
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Wednesday, June 24, 2015
10 Ways to Fight Sins Against Purity
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  1. Constant prayer. Hence the admonition of the wise King; As I knew that I could not otherwise be continent, except God gave it, I went to the Lord and besought him. (Wisd. 8:21)
  2. Mortification of the flesh by fasting and abstinence. Jesus says these impure spirits can in no other way be cast out but by prayer and fasting. (Matt. 17:20)
  3. The frequent meditation on the four last things, and on the bitter sufferings of our Lord; for there is, says St. Augustine, no means more powerful and effective against the heat of lust than reflection on the ignominious death of the Redeemer.
  4. The quiet consideration of the temporal and eternal evils which follow from this vice, as already described.
  5. The love and veneration of the Blessed Virgin who is the mother of beautiful love, the refuge of all sinners, of whom St. Bernard says: "No one has ever invoked her in his necessity without being heard."
  6. The careful mortification of the eyes. The pious Job made a covenant with his eyes, that. he would not so much as look upon a virgin. (Job 31:1)
  7. The avoidance of evil occasions, especially intercourse with persons of the other sex. "Remember," says St. Jerome, "that a woman drove out the inhabitants of paradise, and that you are not holier than David, stronger than Samson, wiser than Solomon, who all fell by evil intercourse."
  8. The avoidance of idleness: for idleness, says the proverb, is the beginning of all evil.
  9. The immediate banishing of all bad thoughts by often pronouncing the names of Jesus and Mary, which, as St. Alphonsus Ligouri says, have the special power of driving away impure thoughts.
  10. The frequent use of the holy Sacraments of Penance and of the Altar. This last remedy in particular is a certain cure if we make known to our confessor our weaknesses, and use the remedies he prescribes. The Scripture says that frequent Communion is the seed from which virgins spring, and the table which God has prepared against all temptations that annoy us.
 Source: Fr. Goffine's The Church's Year
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Sunday, June 21, 2015
Why is There a State of Necessity in the Church?
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It's an important question, as souls have the right to obtain the necessary aids for their salvation, particularly sound doctrine and properly administered sacraments.

But the disastrous state of affairs in the Catholic Church today—which constitutes a danger for the Faith—has made the attainment of these aids very difficult, if even impossible.

Inherent to this crisis is the daily dilemma of Catholics having to choose whether to obey the teachings of the Faith or the errors of Modernism.

For their fidelity to Tradition—what the Church has always taught—such Catholics find themselves persecuted and usually unable to obtain the sacraments without a modernist compromise.

This grave crisis of the Faith has led to a state of necessity in the Church and the consequent application of supplied jurisdiction for the salvation of souls.

Source: SSPX.org
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Friday, June 19, 2015
Meditation on the Great Apostacy
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“During this unhappy period there will be laxity in divine and human precepts. Discipline will suffer. The Holy Canons will be completely disregarded and the clergy will not respect the laws of the Church. The Holy Canons and religious dogmas are clouded by senseless questions and elaborate arguments. As a result, no principle at all, however holy, authentic, ancient, and certain it may be, will not remain free of censure, criticism, false interpretations, modifications and delamination by man. These are evil times, century full of dangers and calamities. Heresy is everywhere and the followers of heresy are in power almost everywhere. Bishops, prelates and priests say they are doing their duty, that they are vigilant. – St. Francis of Paola
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Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Can Catholics Have Tattoos?
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"You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh, for the dead, neither shall you make in yourselves any figures or marks: I am the Lord" (Leviticus 19:28).

The above section of Scripture is taken from the Douay Rheims Scriptures.  Some Scripture translations explictly refer to tattoos.  Let's take the RSV-CE for instance for the same line from Leviticus: "You shall not make any cuttings in your flesh on account of the dead or tattoo any marks upon you: I am the LORD."

While it is true that the above prohibition against tattoos was written in the context of the Old Testament Law (the Mosaic Law). While this Law is no longer in force by reason of Christ’s Sacrifice on the Cross, we do have to keep in mind the words of the Redeemer Himself: “Do not think that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets.  I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill” (Matthew 5:17). 

While the Old Testament laws on farming and which crops to keep in your field are no longer in place and while the Laws prohibiting the consumption of pork are no longer in place, all of these Old laws had their fulfillment in the Law of Christ.  Christ came to perfect the Law.  He abolished divorce that was allowed under the Law of Moses in order to perfect the Laws of Matrimony (cf. Matthew 19:8).  Christ also showed us in driving the swine off the cliff that the prohibition on pork was symbolic on the prohibition against sin.  And ultimately these Laws were all done to make the People of God, the Israelites, a holy people set apart from the other nations.  If these were God’s holy people and a special race set aside, then they had to act differently than the other pagan races that were in the ancient world.  Therein lies one of the chief reasons why there were Laws and why we have Laws – to keep us as a special people united to God and separate from those who are not of God.

As a result, while the Leviticus prohibition on tattoos is no longer explicitly prohibited by virtue of the Mosaic Law, tattoos still remain offensive and Catholics should refrain from them?  Why?  Just as the Old Law set aside the People of God for holy things, so too we must set ourselves aside and refrain from certain actions. What makes tattoos wrong? 

In the New Testament we have the revelation of the Son of God and have received the fruits of His redemptive and efficacious Sacrifice on the Cross.  The Church was founded on Pentecost at the Descent of the Holy Ghost, who Christ sent as His Advocate; and we who have been baptized and Confirmed have received within us the gifts of the Holy Ghost.  In this way, we are truly Temples of the Holy Ghost (i.e. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).  As such, we must treat our bodies worthily.  We are not to dress immodestly or give in to sensual pleasures of the flesh, as do the pagans and those who are not of God.  And we too must refrain from tattooing our bodies by virtue of the fact that they are Temples of the Holy Ghost and created in the image of God.  

“Know you not, that your (bodily) members are the temple of the Holy Ghost, who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own (property)?  For you are bought with a great price.  Glorify and bear God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)

In an online article Fr. Stephen Somerville addressed much of the above points in his own words.  His conclusion is worth repeating here:

“Is, then, the mark of tattooing lawful for the Catholic?  Not wishing to exaggerate what may be a small matter, I judge that I speak with the mind of the Church when I say that tattooing is at least unseemly for a Catholic. It surely could weaken Faith in Christ for one to place a non-Christ permanent mark on his body.  Our body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, says St. Paul.  Let that temple be preserved from unworthy marks”
Image Source: Pinterest
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Saturday, June 13, 2015
St Dominic & the Most Holy Rosary: A Necessary Devotion
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On the Holy Rosary given by Our Lady to St Dominic to spread throughout the entire world. How the enemies of the Church realize the power of the Rosary found in the book of a communist AA-1025. Story of Our Lady of Akita & the Jesuits that survived the atomic bombs in Japan. Pray the Rosary!!!
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Thursday, June 11, 2015
Feast of St. Barnabas
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Greater Double (1955 Calendar): June 11

Today the Church recalls and celebrates the life of St. Barnabas, one of the 72 disciples called by Jesus. After Pentecost and the founding of the Church by the Holy Ghost, the apostle Barnabas was sent to Antioch and there he invited Paul, the former persecutor of God's elect, to be his co-worker.

Inspired by the Holy Ghost, the clergy of Antioch dedicated Barnabas and Paul to the work of converting the Gentiles. Both St. Paul & St. Barnabas labored for many years on Cyprus for the Faith.  And many years later, St. Barnabas followed the same fate as nearly all of the other apostles when he willingly suffered martyrdom. 

Taken from today's Lesson at Mass:
LESSON Acts 11:21-26; 13:1-3

In those days, a great number who believed turned to the Lord. The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose, for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and of faith. And a great many people were added to the Lord. So Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians. Now there were in the church at Antioch prophets and teachers, Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a member of the court of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." Then after fasting and praying they laid their hands on them and sent them off.

Prayer:

O God, we are made happy by the merits and intercession of Your blessed apostle Barnabas. May the prayers we offer through him bring us the gift of Your grace. Through our Lord . . .

Prayer Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal
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Wednesday, June 10, 2015
St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland
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SemiDouble (1955 Calendar): June 10

Holy Mother Church again places before us the saintly example of a member of the nobility who sought to follow closely the example of Christ and of His Blessed Mother.  Today we celebrate the Feast of St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland.  May we recall her intercession at this time more than others as the United Kingdom falls further from the grace of God and back into the abyss of paganism.  St. Margaret, pray for us!

The following is taken from the great work of Dom Guaranger in his massive collection on "The Liturgical Year":

SCOTLAND had long been Christian when Margaret was given to her to establish, amidst a population so diversified, and so often at mutual enmity as was hers, that unity which makes a nation.

Ancient Caledonia, defended by her lakes, mountains, and rivers, had, up to the fall of the Roman empire, kept her independence. But, whilst herself inaccessible to invading troops, she had become the refuge of the vanquished of every race and the proscribed of every epoch.

Many an advancing wave, that had paused at the feet of her granite frontiers, had swept pitilessly over the southern provinces of the great British island. Britons, Saxons, and Danes in turn, dispossessed and driven from their homes, fleeing northwards, had  successively crept in, and settling down as best they might, had maintained their own customs in juxtaposition with those of the first inhabitants, adding consequently their own mutual jealousies to the inveterate divisions of the Picts and Scots.

But from the very evil itself the remedy was to corne. God, in order to show that he is master of revolutions just as he is of the surging waves, was about to confide the execution of his merciful designs upon Scotland to such casual instruments as a storm or a political overthrow may sometimes prove to be. At the opening of the eleventh century, Danish invasion had driven from the English shore the sons of the Saxon king, Edmund Ironside. The crowned apostle of Hungary, St Stephen I, generously received the fugitives at his court, welcoming in these helpless children the great-nephews of a saint, namely Edward the Martyr

To the eldest he gave his own daughter in marriage, and the second he affianced, to the niece of St Henry, emperor of Germany. Of this last mentioned union were born three children, Edgar, surnamed Atheling, Christina, afterwards a nun, and Margaret, whose feast the Church is keeping to-day. By the turning tide of fortune, the exiles once more returned to their country, and Edgar was brought to the very steps of the English throne. For in the meantime, the sceptre had passed from the Danish princes back again to the Saxon line, in the person of their uncle, St Edward the Confessor, and by very birthright seemed destined to pass ultimately to Edgar Atheling.

But almost immediately after their return from exile, the death of St Edward and the Norman conquest again banished the royal Saxon family. The ship bearing these noble fugitives, bound for the continent, was driven in an opposite direction by a hurricane, and stranded on the Scottish shore. Edgar Atheling, in spite of the efforts of the Saxon party, was never to raise up the fallen throne of his sires; but his sister, the saint of this day, made conquest of the land whither the storm, God's instrument, had carried her.

Having become the wife of Malcolm III, her gentle influence softened the fierce instincts of the son of Duncan, and triumphed over the barbarism still so dominant in those parts of the country as to separate them utterly from the rest of the known world. The fierce highlander and haughty lowlander, reconciled at last, now followed their gentle queen along hitherto unknown paths, thrown open by her to the light of the Gospel. The strong now bent down to meet the weak or the poor; and all alike, casting aside the rigidity of their hardy race, let themselves be captured by the alluring charms of Christian charity. Holy penitence resumed its rights over the gross instincts of mere nature. The frequentation of the Sacraments, once more brought into esteem, produced seasonable fruits. Everywhere, whether in Church or in State, abuses vanished.

The whole kingdom became one family, whereof Margaret was called the mother; for Scotland was born by her to true civilization. David I (inscribed like his mother in the catalogue of the saints) completed the work begun by her; and another child of Margaret's, alike worthy of her, Matilda of Scotland, surnamed' good Queen Maud,'was married to Henry I of England; and thus an end was put on the English soil to the persistent rivalries of victors and vanquished, by this admixture of Saxon blood with the Norman race.

Prayer:

O God, who didst make the blessed Queen Margaret wonderful for her surpassing charity to the poor, grant that by her intercession and example, Thy love may ever grow in our hearts. Through our Lord . . .

Prayer Source: 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal
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Thursday, June 4, 2015
Star of the Sea Catholic Church: Altar Boy Policy Update
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Source: Star of the Sea Parish from Regina Magazine

Earlier this year on January 31st I contacted the pastor of Star of the Sea Catholic Church in San Francisco, as they had been under liberal attacks for restoring the practice of male-only altar servers.  Yesterday I received an email response from Father that I wish to make known:

My Original Message:
Hello Father, 
I just wanted to send you a note of support to thank you for taking this tough stand.
I go to a parish in Chicago that only has male altar servers.  We've seen a large increase in vocations in the parish.  It's important to note, as you have explained, that altar boys is the long standing tradition of the Church.  It is vital for our Church's future vocations that boys be trained in altar serving.  I know that you do not need reminded of this. 
I just wanted you to know that you are very much supported by many.  And I hope that despite the pressures you may face, that you will stay true to this position. 
May Almighty God protect you and may our Blessed Mother intercede for you amidst those who wish to attack you.

Father's Response:
Dear Matthew,

Thank you for your email in support of Fr. Driscoll and me, and for your prayerful support of our dear Archbishop, Salvatore Cordileone. Since the altar girl controversy broke out in January, I have received hundreds of emails from around California, the entire country, and even several dozen from foreign countries. I cannot respond to all of them personally, so am sending this general letter to you.

Archbishop Cordileone is working hard, and suffering personally with resolute magnanimity, to bring the light of Christ’s Gospel and the beautiful teachings of our Church to his people in San Francisco. He is widely misunderstood and even attacked for it, but accepts this with graceful patience. He is a good father. We at Star of the Sea want to share in this mission, and so have accepted also a part of this suffering. Please pray for us, that we accept the wisdom and perseverance that God, through Our Lady, is offering to us. Personally, I hope that this experience will truly purify me and many others, so that we may all be holy and bring glory to God. All of Jesus, through His Holy Mother.

Yours sincerely in Christ,

Fr. Joseph Illo
The San Francisco Community of St. Philip Neri
at Star of the Sea Parish

Please join me in praying for the parish and those who suffer so much for remaining true to the Church.  May the Crucified Lord protect them, inspire them, and sustain them.
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Traditional Mass Propers: Corpus Christi
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INTROIT Ps. 80:17
He fed them with the finest wheat, alleluia! and filled them with honey from the rock, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! Ps. 80:2. Sing joyfully to God, our helper, sing aloud to the God of Jacob. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT - O God, we possess a lasting memorial of Your Passion in this wondrous Sacrament. Grant that we may so venerate the mysteries of Your Body and Blood that we may always feel within ourselves the effects of Your redemption; who lives and rules with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever.



EPISTLE
I Cor. 11:23-29
Breathren: For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus, the same night in which he was betrayed, took bread, And giving thanks, broke and said: "Take ye and eat: This is my body, which shall be delivered for you. This do for the commemoration of me." In like manner also the chalice, after he had supped, saying: "This chalice is the new testament in my blood. This do ye, as often as you shall drink, for the commemoration of me. For as often as you shall eat this bread and drink the chalice, you shall shew the death of the Lord, until he come." Therefore, whosoever shall eat this bread, or drink the chalice of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and of the blood of the Lord. But let a man prove himself: and so let him eat of that bread and drink of the chalice. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily eateth and drinketh judgment to himself.

GRADUAL
The eyes of all look hopefully to You, O Lord, and You give them food in due season. V. You open Your hand and fill every living creature with blessing.

Alleluia, alleluia! V. John 6:56-57 My flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh, and drinks my blood, abides in me and I in him, alleluia!

GOSPEL
John 6:56-59

At that time, Jesus said to the crowds of the Jews: "For my flesh is meat indeed: and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood abideth in me: and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, the same also shall live by me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Not as your fathers did eat manna and are dead. He that eateth this bread shall live for ever."



OFFERTORY
Lev. 21:6
The priests of the Lord offer incense and loaves to God; therefore they shall be sacred to their God and shall not profane His name, alleluia!

SECRET  O Lord, graciously bestow upon Your Church the gifts of unity and peace, which are symbolized in this Sacrifice we offer You. Through our Lord . . .

COMMUNION
I Cor. 11:26-27
As often as you shall eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord, until He comes. Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily, will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord, alleluia!



POST COMMUNION -  O Lord, grant that we may enjoy the eternal presence of Your divinity, which is foreshadowed by our earthly reception of Your Precious Body and Blood; who lives and rules with God the Father . . .

Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945

Note: For more information on the Theology of Corpus Christ, please click here.  And for information on this day's processions, please click hereAnd click here to see videos of processions.
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Sunday, May 31, 2015
My New Life as a Third Order Dominican
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As of May 29th, I am now a member of the Third Order of Penance of St. Dominic, which is better known, as a 3rd Order Dominican.  The Order to which I am now a postulant is affiliated with the Dominican Friars of Steffeshausen, a newer community of traditional Dominicans.  As a Traditional Third Order Dominican, I will be following the Rule that was in place as of 1923, the last Rule for Dominican tertiaries before the Second Vatican Council.

I will begin my studying with the text of Fr. Joret entitled "Our Dominican Life." In order to spread the spirit of the Order, I have a copy of this book in PDF and I'd be happy to send it out via email to all who are interested.  Just email me to request it.

For those interested, the Rule itself can be found here:Dominican Third Order (Traditional) Rule of 1923

In summary, the observances of the Rule include:

I am far from perfect and pray that this Rule help me in my quest for spiritual perfection.  Please pray for me to grow in grace and seek the salvation of souls. St. Dominic, pray for me!
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Traditional Mass Propers: FIRST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST: Trinity Sunday
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INTROIT Tobit 12:6
Blessed be the Holy Trinity and undivided Unity. We will give glory to Him, because He has shown mercy to us. Ps. 8:2. O Lord, our Lord, how glorious is Your name over all the earth! V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT - TRINITY SUNDAY - Almighty and ever-living God, to You we owe the grace of our true faith, which enables us to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity and to adore the blessed Unity through the power of Your majesty. Grant that by holding fast to that faith we may always be guarded against all afflictions. Through our Lord . . .

Commemoration of the FIRST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST - O God, the strength of all who place their trust in You, graciously hear our prayers. Because of our weak human nature, we can do nothing without You. Help us by Your grace that we may fulfill Your commands and please You in will and action. Through our Lord . . .




EPISTLE
Rom. 11:33-36
O the depth of the riches of the wisdom and of the knowledge of God! How incomprehensible are his judgments, and how unsearchable his ways! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? Or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and recompense shall be made him? For of him, and by him, and in him, are all things: to him be glory for ever. Amen.

GRADUAL
Blessed are You, O Lord, who behold the depths and are enthroned upon the Cherubim. V. Blessed are You, O Lord, in the firmament of heaven, and worthy of praise forever.

Alleluia, alleluia! V. Dan. 3:52 Blessed are You, O Lord the God of our fathers, and worthy of praise forever. Alleluia!

GOSPEL
Matt. 28:18-20

At that time, Jesus coming, spoke to them, saying: "All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Going therefore, teach ye all nations: baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. And behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world."


OFFERTORY
Tob. 12:6
Blessed be God the Father, and the only-begotten Son of God, and the Holy Spirit, because He has shown mercy to us.

SECRET  Bless this Sacrificial Offering as we call upon Your holy name, O Lord our God, and through it let us too become an eternal offering to You. Through our Lord . . .

SECRET - Commemoration of the FIRST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST  Graciously accept the offerings we dedicate to You, O Lord, and let them win for us Your unending assistance. Through our Lord . . .

COMMUNION
Tob. 12:6
We bless the God of heaven, and we will praise him before all men, because He has shown mercy to us..

POST COMMUNION -  O Lord, our God, let us be made strong in body and soul by the reception of this Sacrament and by acknowledging the Holy, Eternal Trinity and its undivided Unity. Through our Lord . . .

POST COMMUNION  - Commemoration of the FIRST SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST
We have received Your exceedingly great Gifts in all their fullness, O Lord. Grant that we may use these graces for our salvation and never cease to sing Your praises. Through our Lord . . .

Sources: Saint Andrew Daily Missal and the Marian Missal , 1945

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Thursday, May 28, 2015
Prayers for the Salvation of All Men
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PRAYERS FOR THE SALVATION OF ALL MEN

O Lord Jesus Christ, Lover and Saviour of souls, Who didst choose to die for all men and whose Sacred Heart yearns that no soul may perish, but that all may come to the knowledge of Thy truth, grant, I beseech Thee, the salvation of all mankind. Have pity on all Catholics, that they may be true to Thy Faith, steadfast in its practice, faithful to their duties, holy in their lives and happy in their deaths.

Have mercy on all those disinherited children of God who find themselves in the Christian denominations which are separated from Thy One True Church. Grant them the light to see and the strength to embrace the fullness of Thy truth. Encourage them to read and study, and help me to find the means of giving to many of them good Catholic books and of bringing them to instructions. Have mercy, O my God, on the great sad multitude of our fellow countrymen, who wander like lost sheep, far from true Christian teaching. Multiply the number of Thy priests, stir up the zeal of Thy laity, so that all Thy wandering children may be brought to the knowledge and the love of Thy full truth. Amen.

A PRAYER FOR PAGAN PEOPLES

O Lord, have mercy also on the pagan nations of the world, the sad thousands of millions who walk in the darkness of the shadow of the valley of death. Have pity on abandoned sinners, on the malicious, on outcasts, on the fallen and on the depraved. Have mercy on the dying and especially on those who have none to pray for them. With all the fervor of Thy Sacred Heart, my Jesus, pray and beseech Thy Heavenly Father for the conversion of all sinners, and for the perseverance in Thy grace of all the just. Amen.

A PRAYER FOR THE PROMOTION OF THE MISSIONARY SPIRIT

O most merciful Jesus, Shepherd of souls, behold the great multitude of the heathen, redeemed and purchased by Thy Sacred Blood and Thy horrible agony, still wandering far off from Thy holy Fold and ignorant of the very existence of their Redeemer. O Jesus, the abundant treasure of Thy Blood has purchased a million times over those souls so dear to Thy Sacred Heart. Stir up in all Thy faithful a burning zeal for missionary endeavor, a great generosity toward missionary works, and an immense desire to convert the whole world and bring all men to the knowledge of Thy truth. Amen.

IMPRIMATUR; + Albert G. Meyer. Archb. of Milwaukee. Nov. 7. 1956
TAN Books and Publishers. Inc.. P.O. Bo. 424, Rockford. IIlinois 61105

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Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Whit Embertide Reminder: Fast & Abstain
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During the Octave of Pentecost, the Church traditionally celebrates the Summer Ember Days. Today is Ember Wednesday. This Friday and Saturday will also be Ember Days. As per the traditional discipline of the Church, Ember Days are days of Fast and Partial Abstinence. (Friday of course being a day of complete abstinence). If you wish to read more about the Ember Days, please see my post from last year.

This week serves as an excellent opportunity for all of us to fulfill Heaven's request at Lourdes and Fatima of "Penance, Penance, Penance." (We can also read about the importance of Penance from the very teaching of our Lord and King in the Gospels, for example see Lk 13:3,5 and Mt 4:17, 11:20-21; Mt 12:41)
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Tuesday, May 26, 2015
CORDAID Funds Planned Parenthood and Dispenses Contraception
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CORDAID, which stands for "Catholic Organization for Relief and Development Aid," is a co-founder and current affiliate of Caritas Internationalis, the Vatican-run umbrella organization that oversees Catholic charity, aid, and development organizations (like Catholic Relief Services) all over the world.

Caritas constitutes part of the governing body for the international Marxist organization known as the World Social Forum, which is avidly pro-abortion and pro-homosexual. CORDAID is the local Caritas affiliate for the Netherlands.

CORDAID promotes abortion, funds Planned Parenthood and Marie Stopes International, and dispenses contraception of every kind, including abortifacient contraception. CORDAID goes out of its way to make condoms and contraception readily available to the youth at little or no cost. CORDAID indirectly is part of the Vatican's network of charity relief organizations, but CORDAID is passionately anti-Catholic and pro-death.

Source
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Saturday, May 23, 2015
Traditional Latin Mass Propers: Vigil of Pentecost
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Today is the Vigil of Pentecost (Saturday after the 6th Sunday after Easter). 

As I posted previously in my post entitled "Vigil of Pentecost: Fast and Abstinence":
Today's preparation should not be underestimated.  Catholics should fast and partially abstain from meat today (as per 1962 rubrics) in order to better conform themselves to celebrate this High Holy Day of Pentecost.
 As the missal's opening section states before the Propers:
The feast of Whitsun [another name for Pentecost] is as ancient as that of Easter, and First Vespers on the Saturday following begins the liturgical season called Season after Pentecost.  The Ascension of God's Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, to Heaven did not leave us abandoned and helpless. By the Divine Will, the Third Person of the Trinity is to be the soul and guiding light of Christ's Mystical Body.


INTROIT Ezech. 36:23-24, 25-26

When I shall be sanctified in you, I will gather you together out of all the countries; and I will pour upon you clean water and you shall be cleansed from all your filthiness, and I will give you a new spirit, alleluia, alleluia! Ps. 33:2. I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall ever be in my mouth. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT
Let the brightness of Your glory shine upon us, Almighty God, so that the Holy Spirit, light of Your light, may strengthen the hearts of those who are reborn in Your grace. Through Our Lord . . .

EPISTLE 
Acts 19:1-8

Now it was while Apollo was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper coasts, came to Ephesus and found certain disciples. And he said to them: "Have you received the Holy Ghost since ye believed?" But they said to him: "We have not so much as heard whether there be a Holy Ghost." And he said: "In what then were you baptized?" Who said: "In John's baptism." Then Paul said: "John baptized the people with the baptism of penance saying: That they should believe in him, who was to come after him, that is to say, in Jesus." Having heard these things, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. And when Paul had imposed his hands on them, the Holy Ghost came upon them: and they spoke with tongues and prophesied. And all the men were about twelve. And entering into the synagogue, he spoke boldly for the space of three months, disputing and exhorting concerning the kingdom of God.

Alleluia! V. Ps. 106:1. Praise the Lord, for He is good, for His mercy endures forever.
TRACT Ps. 116:1-2
Praise the Lord, all you nations; praise Him in unison, all you peoples!
V. For His mercy is steadfast towards us, and the truth of the Lord endures forever.



GOSPEL  
John 14:15-21

At that time, Jesus said to His disciples: "If you love me, keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father: and He shall give you another Paraclete, that he may abide with you for ever: The Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, nor knoweth Him. But you shall know Him; because He shall abide with you and shall be in you. I will not leave you orphans: I will come to you. Yet a little while and the world seeth Me no more. But you see Me: because I live, and you shall live. In that day you shall know that I am in my Father: and you in Me, and I in you. He that hath My commandments and keepeth them; he it is that loveth Me. And he that loveth Me shall be loved of My Father: and I will love him and will manifest myself to him."

OFFERTORY ANTIPHON  
Ps. 103:30-31
Send forth Your Spirit, and they shall be created, and You shall renew the face of the earth. May the glory of the Lord endure forever, alleluia!

SECRET
Bless our offering, O Lord, and cleanse our hearts by the light of the Holy Spirit. Through Our Lord . . .

COMMUNION ANTIPHON  
John 7:37-39
On the last day of the feast, Jesus said, "He who believes in Me, from within him there shall flow rivers of living water." He said this of the Spirit, whom they who believed in Him were to receive, alleluia, alleluia!

POSTCOMMUNION
May the coming of the Holy Spirit cleanse our hearts, and, as a heavenly dew, water them to bring forth good fruit. Through Our Lord . . .
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Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Traditional Latin Mass Propers: Ascension of the Lord
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I think it is important to recall these prayers throughout all of the traditional Octave of the Ascension.  As I posted about previously, the Ascension was observed as an Octave up until 1954.  These prayers would have been said on both the Ascension of the Lord as well as on the Octave Day of the Ascension.

Click here for more information on Ascensiontide, including the history of the Octaves up until 1954.

DOUBLE OF THE FIRST CLASS / WHITE

INTROIT Acts 1:11

Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking up to heaven? Alleluia! He shall come in the same way as you have seen him going up to heaven, alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! Ps. 46:2. O, clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with the voice of exultation. V. Glory be . . .

COLLECT
O Almighty God, we firmly believe that Your only-begotten Son, our Redeemer, ascended this day into heaven. May our minds dwell always on this heavenly home. Through Our Lord . . .

EPISTLE 
Acts 1:1-11

In the former treatise I made, O Theophilus, of all things which Jesus began to do and to teach, Until the day on which, giving commandments by the Holy Ghost to the apostles whom he had chosen, he was taken up. To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion, by many proofs, for forty days appearing to them, and speaking of the kingdom of God. And eating together with them, he commanded them, that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but should wait for the promise of the Father, "which you have heard"(saith he) "by my mouth. For John indeed baptized with water: but you shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost, not many days hence."
They therefore who were come together, asked him, saying: "Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom of Israel?" But he said to them: "It is not for you to know the time or moments, which the Father hath put in his own power: But you shall receive the power of the Holy Ghost coming upon you, and you shall be witnesses unto me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and Samaria, and even to the uttermost part of the earth." And when he had said these things, while they looked on, he was raised up: and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they were beholding him going up to heaven, behold two men stood by them in white garments. Who also said: "Ye men of Galilee, why stand you looking up to heaven? This Jesus who is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come as you have seen him going into heaven."

Alleluia, alleluia!  Ps. 46:6
God ascends His throne amid shouts of joy, the Lord is taken up with the sound of trumpets. Alleluia!
V. Ps. 67:18-19. The Lord is in Sinai, in the holy place; ascending on high, He has led captivity captive. Alleluia!

GOSPEL  
Mark 16:14-20

At that time, Jesus appeared to the eleven as they were at table: and he upbraided them with their incredulity and hardness of heart, because they did not believe them who had seen him after he was risen again. And he said to them: "Go ye into the whole world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall he condemned. And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name they shall cast out devils. They shall speak with new tongues. They shall take up serpents: and if they shall drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them. They shall lay their hand upon the sick: and they shall recover."
And the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sitteth on the right hand of God. But they going forth preached every where: the Lord working withal, and confirming the word with signs that followed.

After the Gospel is read, the Pascal Candle is extinguished.

OFFERTORY ANTIPHON  
Ps. 46:6
God ascends His throne amid shouts of joy, the Lord is taken up with the sound of trumpets, alleluia!

SECRET
Accept, O Lord, the gifts we offer to celebrate the glorious ascension of Your Son. May Your mercy free us from our present dangers and lead us to eternal life. Through Our Lord . . .

COMMUNION ANTIPHON  
Ps. 67:33-34
Sing to the Lord, who ascends above the heaven of heavens to the East, alleluia!

POSTCOMMUNION
Almighty and merciful God, grant that this Sacrament, which we have received in this visible sacred Rite, may bring us Your invisible help. Through Our Lord . . .
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