Wednesday, January 31, 2007

"Ancient Traditional" Huh?

I haven't stopped laughing.
Go to Corning Curmudgeon for wit and wisdom.

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Then as now

Pope says he's consoled by stories of apostles, disciples arguing

By Cindy Wooden | Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI said he finds consolation in the New Testament stories of the apostles and first disciples arguing with each other.

Continuing his series of audience talks about the leaders of the early church, Pope Benedict spoke Jan. 31 about St. Paul and St. Barnabas arguing over whether they should take another person with them on a mission.

"So, even among saints there are contrasts, disagreements, controversies," the pope said.

"This appears very consoling to me, because we see that the saints did not drop as saints from heaven. They were men like us with problems and even with sins," the pope said before he was interrupted by applause.

"Holiness consists not in never having made a mistake or sinned," he said, but rather it grows with "conversion, repentance, with a willingness to start over and, especially, with the ability to reconcile and forgive."

"We can all learn this path to holiness," he said...

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They're at it again!

Ite ecce ego mitto vos sicut agnos inter lupos. – Lucas 10:3

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Easy quiz. Try it!

You know the Bible 100%!

Wow! You are awesome! You are a true Biblical scholar, not just a hearer but a personal reader! The books, the characters, the events, the verses - you know it all! You are fantastic!

Ultimate Bible Quiz

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In Memoriam

For all my brother priests who continue to be martyred in many different ways.

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Monday, January 29, 2007

On Guard

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Avoid Gossip

From A Catholic Life:

Saint Philip Neri once gave a lady who gossiped the following penance:

"Go to the market, buy a chicken, and pluck it on your way back here, scattering the feathers as you walk. When you give me the plucked chicken, I'll tell you the rest of your penance."

The woman was baffled did as she was told. After she handed the plucked chicken to the saint, St. Neri said, "Now that you've spread those feathers about, go pick them up."

"But, Father! It's impossible to know where they've all gone!"

"Just like the words of your gossip," he said.

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Sunday, January 28, 2007

Papal Wisdom

"Even today there is no lack of "unworthy and treacherous Christians in the church," the pope said, so "it is up to each one of us to counteract the evil done by them" with a clear and faithful witness to Christ." – His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI | October 18, 2006

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Saturday, January 27, 2007

Extend a helping hand

Our Lord's Revelations to Mutter Vogel
Mutter Vogel's Worldwide Love | St. Grignon Publishing House | Altoting, South Germany (Repost)

"One should never attack a priest, even when he's in error, rather one should pray and do penance that I'll grant him My grace again. He alone fully represents Me, even when he doesn't live after My example!" -- 29.06.1929.

When a Priest falls we should extend him a helping hand through prayer and not through attacks. "I myself will be his judge, no one but I." "Whoever voices judgment over a priest has voiced it over Me; child, never let a Priest be attacked, take up his defense." -- Feast of Christ the King 1937

"Child, Never judge your confessor, rather pray much for him and offer every Thursday, through the hands of My blessed Mother, Holy Communion (for him)." -- 18.06.1939

"Never again accept an out-of-the-way word about a Priest, and speak no unkind word (about them), even if it were true. Every Priest is My Vicar and My heart will be sickened and insulted because of it. If you hear a judgment (against a Priest) pray a Hail Mary." -- 28.06.1939

"If you see a Priest who celebrates the Holy Mass unworthily then say nothing about him, rather tell it to Me alone! I stand beside him on the altar!" "Oh pray much for My priests, that they'll love purity above all, that they'll celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass with pure hands and heart. Certainly the Holy Sacrifice is one and the same even when it is celebrated by an unworthy priest, but the graces called down upon the people is not the same!" --28.02.1938

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Friday, January 26, 2007

What is the Mass?

Enjoy the video!

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Pope Pic of the Week

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Jesus Christ Conquers



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The role of the prophet

At our class this week on the Gospel of Luke, the presenter pointed out the prophetic aspect of Jesus’ ministry and its connection with the ministries of the prophets Elijah and Elisha. I found this commentary at Spero News expanding on the role of the prophet: “Why prophets aren’t popular.”

Politeness at any cost is not God’s style. The reason for this is that God is love, and love is more concerned about the welfare of others than with one’s own image | Thursday, January 25, 2007 | by Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D.

“In polite conversation, never bring up politics or religion.” That’s the advice I was given as a child. And it’s good advice, too, if your main goal is to make sure everybody likes you. Politics and religion are risky because they involve deeply held convictions, and if you happen to challenge these convictions, you get the same reaction that a dentist gets when his probe hits a nerve.

But politeness at any cost is not God’s style. The reason for this is that God is love, and love is more concerned about the welfare of others than with one’s own image. So if someone is on a seemingly pleasant canoe ride down a lazy river, love cares enough to warn the passengers that Niagara Falls is up ahead. “But everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion.” Opinions don’t change the fact that going over the falls in a canoe will kill you.

Religious and moral choices are like this. They set one on a course that leads either to a safe harbor or over the falls. Sex outside of marriage, intoxication with drugs and alcohol, honoring Jesus but rejecting the authority of His Church, all these choices have very unpleasant, even deadly, consequences.

So God sends prophets (the Greek word means “spokesmen”) whose role includes warning people that they are headed over the falls. You’d think people would be grateful for the heads up. But often people respond to bad news by killing the messenger.

Why is this? Because the idea that we are basically “good people” whom God ought to appreciate, and that our beliefs and lifestyle are at least as good as all others–these are comforting illusions. When a prophet calls all this into question, we find this threatening and very uncomfortable. If the prophet is right, this demands change, and change always means pain, and we don’t like pain.

Jeremiah and Jesus both are dealing with people who think that they are “good people.” After all, they are God’s chosen people. They offer sacrifices. God is on their side. So they respond to Jeremiah’s warnings by eliminating the source of pain. They throw him into a muddy cistern and he narrowly escapes with his life. Jesus in Lk 4 eludes the Nazarenes when they want to throw him over the hill, but ultimately gives his life for those who cry out “Crucify him!”

So if this is how people are going to respond, why bother to rock the boat? Why stick your neck out? Because people have a right to the truth, whether they end up heeding the truth or not. The prophet’s responsibility is to speak God’s word as clearly and convincingly as possible. What people will do with that word is not under his control. Mother Teresa was fond of saying that God does not require us to have success; he requires us to be faithful.

At first glance, Jeremiah did not have much “success.” His listeners totally ignored him, the Babylonians destroyed Jerusalem, and Israel was taken into exile. On Good Friday, it did not look like Jesus had been successful either. But 300 years later the Romans who crucified him were now worshiping him, and the lives that had been forever changed were too numerous to count.

We who have been confirmed have been given a share in Christ’s prophetic anointing. If our goal is to be everybody’s buddy, we are going to have a hard time being faithful. The word that God commands us to share is sometimes comforting, sometimes disturbing. We must get over our fear of offending people and love them enough to tell them the truth. Of course, there is always the question of the right place and time. But if no place is the right place and the right time never comes, we can be sure that we are allowing fear of other’s opinion to get in the way of love. Love is not about being sentimental. The love of God, spoken about in 1 Cor 13, is tough love.

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Thursday, January 25, 2007

The devil has no knees

Please visit the Adoremus Bulletin for this article by Bishop Olmsted, Knees to Love Christ.

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The Joy of the Lord

I just returned from an Appreciation Dinner sponsored by the parish conference of the St. Vincent DePaul Society. This was an opportunity for many people involved in the ministry to enjoy one another’s company in a social setting recognizing the joy initiated by service to the poor. It is the same joy spoken of by Bishop Olmsted the afternoon the annual Charity and Development Appeal was launched for this year. That joy radiated throughout the room that day and this evening.

We read in 2 Esdras 8:10

And he said to them: Go, eat fat meats, and drink sweet wine, and send portions to them that have not prepared for themselves: because it is the holy day of the Lord, and be not sad: for the joy of the Lord is our strength.

I have decided to completely revamp our youth program for the coming year. In the fall, our young people ages 13 to 18 will begin assisting the poor through the various organizations and institutions already in place in the diocese. Study, theological reflection and socials will augment the service.

Please pray for the success of the Charity and Development Appeal, the work of the Saint Vincent DePaul Society, and the forthcoming service of our young people.

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The Gospel of Luke

After spending the last two days in class studying the Gospel of Luke, I found this very interesting:

American's donation lets pope peruse oldest copy of St. Luke's Gospel

By Cindy Wooden |Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A donation to the Vatican by a U.S. businessman enabled Pope Benedict XVI to peruse a few pages of the oldest existing copy of the Gospel of St. Luke and one of the oldest copies of the Gospel of St. John.

The Catholic businessman, Frank J. Hanna III, and his family were present in the pope's library Jan. 22 when Pope Benedict got his first look at pages from the famous Bodmer Papyrus XIV-XV.

Hanna is the Atlanta-based chief executive officer of HBR Capital Ltd., an investment management company, and co-chairman of President George W. Bush's Presidential Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans.

Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, the Vatican's archivist and librarian, presented both the papyrus and the Hanna family to the pope.

The Bodmer Papyrus XIV-XV, handwritten in Greek around the year 200, contains "about half of each of the Gospels of Luke and John," Cardinal Tauran explained.

"With this new precious papyrus, the library of the pope possesses the most ancient witness of the Gospel of Luke and among the most ancient of the Gospel of John," he said.

For the presentation, Cardinal Tauran and his staff brought only a few pages of the papyrus to the papal apartment.

He invited the pope to "come in person to the library to meditate, if I may say so, in front of that which can be considered a true relic, given that the church has always venerated the divine Scriptures just as she venerates the body of the Lord."

Claudio Piazzoni, vice prefect of the Vatican Library, told Catholic News Service Jan. 23 that the new acquisition includes the oldest existing copy of the Lord's Prayer, which is found in Luke1-4.

The new acquisitions join the Bodmer Papyrus VIII, a copy of the First and Second Letters of St. Peter, which Martin Bodmer personally gave to Pope Paul VI in 1969.

Bodmer died in 1971, entrusting his vast library to a foundation he established. The Gospel texts were acquired from the Bodmer Foundation in Cologny, Switzerland.

Piazzoni said he had no idea how much money was involved in the transaction, although it must have been "significant."

The day after the papal presentation, the Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, dedicated a full page to the manuscripts.

Before the Bodmer documents were discovered in Egypt in 1952, it said, biblical scholars relied on references to the Gospels in the writings of the early church theologians to assert that by the year 100 the Christian community had accepted only four Gospels as inspired texts.

The Bodmer Papyrus XIV-XV, containing the last two Gospels, the newspaper said, provides concrete evidence that the four Gospels were circulating among Christian communities as a complete set by the year 200, although the twin papyrus containing the Gospels of St. Matthew and St. Mark has not been found.

The Vatican took possession of the papyrus in late November and already new discoveries about it have been made, the Vatican newspaper said.

The Bodmer Foundation commissioned a transcription and facsimile of the text in 1961, and 13 years later researchers discovered that at least one fragment had not been transcribed and reproduced.

In the last few months, the Vatican Library's experts have been working to restore the rough binding, which they believe was placed as a protective covering around the papyrus in the early 300s, when the text was already too fragile to use in the liturgy.

The binding was made of layers of parchment and paste and, in restoring it, the newspaper said, new fragments from the external pages of the text itself were discovered.

"The research on an ancient manuscript can never be said to be finished," L'Osservatore said.

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Our Imminent and Transcendent God

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Theory of ...

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Canon 528 §2

The pastor is to see to it that the Most Holy Eucharist is the center of the parish assembly of the faithful.

He is to work so that the Christian faithful are nourished through the devout celebration of the sacraments and, in a special way, that they frequently approach the sacraments of the Most Holy Eucharist and penance. He is also to endeavor that they are led to practice prayer even as families and take part consciously and actively in the sacred liturgy which, under the authority of the diocesan bishop, the pastor must direct in his own parish and is bound to watch over so that no abuses creep in.

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Liturgy

Absolutely beautiful! Codified by the Council of Trent
and promulgated by Saint Pius V in Quo Primum.

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Secret trips

"A Life With Karol," a new book by the late Pope John Paul II's secretary, Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz of Krakow, Poland, reveals that the Polish pope made more than 100 secret trips to ski or hike in the mountains of Italy.

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O Lord, make haste to help me

From today's Daytime Prayer: Psalm 70

O Lord, make haste to my rescue,
Lord, come to my aid!
Let there be shame and confusion
on those who seek my life.

O let them turn back in confusion,
who delight in my harm,
let them retreat, covered with shame,
who jeer at my lot.

Let there be rejoicing and gladness
for all who seek you.
Let them say for ever: "God is great,"
who love your saving help.

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Cardinal Arinze

Thanks Paul!

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Monday, January 22, 2007

For my Soli Deo students...

...from last week's lesson.

Pope Benedict XVI blesses two live lambs on the occasion of St. Agnes' Eve, a martyr of early Christianity and the Patron Saint of Young girls, at the Urbano VIII Chapel of the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican, Saturday, Jan. 20, 2007. The lambs' wool will be sheared to make a pallium, a band of white wool decorated with black crosses that is a sign of authority and a symbol of the bond with the pope for new archbishops.

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National Day of Penance

A baby, not a choice

Today is the National Day of Penance in reparation for the sins against humanity in the United States murder of innocent children.

Our souls mourn their loss.

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Sunday, January 21, 2007

Pray for him

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Overheard

This morning I heard one woman say to another in a stage whisper as I walked by: "Father doesn't have issues. He has a subscription."

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Saint Agnes. Pray for us.

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Happy 91st Birthday Dad!

WWII somewhere in the South Pacific

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Saturday, January 20, 2007

Hillary Special

Clinton: 'I'm in to win' White House

In recognition of this historic announcement, the local KFC has prepared a “Hillary Special” consisting of a bucketful of left wings.

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Divine Providence?

"No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with." -- Kirsten, age 10

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"Spirit" begone!

Thank you Anita at V for Victory! for sending us to The Curt Jester for Jeff Miller’s “leak” of the new rite of exorcism which we may have missed last February. I am particularly pleased with the proposed invocations which I list here for my readership:

From all evil, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From the spirit which denies the text, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From modernist interpretations, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From inclusive language, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From the pride of independence, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From liturgical abuses, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From disobedience to the magisterium, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From an unformed conscience, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
From the spirit of the age, Deliver us, 0 Lord.
For more of the text get thee to The Curt.

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Friday, January 19, 2007

Mona Lisa

'Mona Lisa' died in 1542, was buried in convent

ROME (AFP) - An expert on the "Mona Lisa" says he has ascertained with certainty that the symbol of feminine mystique died on July 15, 1542, and was buried at the convent in central Florence where she spent her final days.

Giuseppe Pallanti found a death notice in the archives of a church in Florence that referred to "the wife of Francesco del Giocondo, deceased July 15, 1542, and buried at Sant'Orsola," the Italian press reported Friday.

Born Lisa Gherardini in May 1479, she is thought to have been the second wife of Del Giocondo, a wealthy silk merchant, with whom she had five children.

While intrigue has surrounded the identity of the woman in the famous unsigned, undated Leonardo da Vinci painting housed at the Louvre in Paris, Lisa Gherardini is widely accepted to have been the subject.

Sant'Orsola, where she died at age 63, now disused and in ruins, is near the San Lorenzo basilica.

"It was in this convent that Mona Lisa placed her youngest daughter Marietta, who later became a nun. And it was there that Lisa, as stipulated in the will of her husband who died four years before her, ended her life," Pallanti told the daily La Repubblica on Friday.

Pallanti, author of "Mona Lisa Revealed: The True Identity of Leonardo's Model," has spent nearly three decades combing Florence's archives.

Another researcher, Da Vinci expert Carlo Pedretti, praised Pallanti for the discovery and urged a search at the site for Lisa Gherardini's remains.

"Thanks to modern techniques, scientists can determine her physical aspect, maybe even her face and thereby make an important contribution" to establishing her identity, he told the ANSA news agency.

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Thanks!

I was handed a nice little note card today:

No matter what happened yesterday
today is filled with hope and promise ...
Also -- keep in your mind and heart
that you're one of God's special children.
Smile and be happy!

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Overheard in cyberspace ;)

Mine eyes have seen the glory of liturgical reform,
It is to the modern era that we now must all conform,
It is with inclusive liturgy the Church we will transform.
Paul the Sixth is marching on!

Glory, glory to the Council,
Glory, glory to the Council,
Glory, glory to the Council,
Paul the Sixth is marching on!

We have stripped out every altar and we’ve taken down the rail,
For now all elaborate ritual we must try to curtail,
And then ‘noble simplicity’ will finally prevail.
Paul the Sixth is marching on!

All errors of the Old Church, with our changes, we have solved,
For now at the new communion we are all to be involved,
And by general absolution, we will have our sins absolved.
Paul the Sixth is marching on!

Now some illiberals claim that we are emptying the pews,
But the only ones to leave us are the ones we want to lose,
We will fill all empty places with Mohammedans and Jews,
Paul the Sixth is marching on!

We have entered into dialogue with every kind of sect,
Since for all of their beliefs we have the greatest of respect,
It’s this inter-faith discussion that the new Mass should reflect.
Paul the Sixth is marching on!

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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Special Report

I see Paul VI and Bugnini in a pas de deux.

Please make your way to this important Special Report found online at The American Spectator.

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Mischievous? Naw!

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That nebulous "spirit"

Anita Moore right on target again at http://v-forvictory.blogspot.com

Betcha Didn't Know Vatican II Said THIS!

Since our dear Rogue Deacon invited us on Sunday to read the documents of Vatican II so we could educate ourselves on just how screwed-over we are by the "hierarchy," let's check out some passages from Sacrosanctum Concilium that he and the rest of the "Spirit of Vatican II" crowd would just as soon we didn't read.

2. In virtue of power conceded by the law, the regulation of the liturgy within certain defined limits belongs also to various kinds of competent territorial bodies of bishops legitimately established....3. Therefore, no other person, even if he be a priest, may add, remove, or change anything in the liturgy on his own authority.

36.1. Particular law remaining in force, the use of the Latin language is to be preserved in the Latin rites.

54....steps should be taken so that the faithful may also be able to say or to sing together in Latin those parts of the Ordinary of the Mass which pertain to them.

115....Composers and singers, especially boys, must also be given a genuine liturgical training.

116. The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services.

120. In the Latin Church the pipe organ is to be held in high esteem, for it is the traditional musical instrument which adds a wonderful splendor to the Church's ceremonies and powerfully lifts up man's mind to God and to higher things.

121. The texts intended to be sung must always be in conformity with Catholic doctrine; indeed they should be drawn chiefly from Holy Scripture and from liturgical sources.

124....Let bishops carefully remove from the house of God and from other sacred places those works of artists which are repugnant to faith, morals, and Christian piety, and which offend true religious sense either by depraved forms or by lack of artistic worth, mediocrity and pretense.

Is it becoming clear why the liberals always cite to the "spirit of Vatican II"?

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Goal!

Benedict lures soccer legend Beckenbauer back to Church

http://www.cathnews.com

Former German World Cup winning captain, Franz Beckenbauer, has returned to the Catholic faith after a meeting with Pope Benedict that he describes as the "most important experience of his life".

Catholic World News reports that Beckenbauer, who led Germany to victory in the 1974 World Cup, told the Munich newspaper Abendzeitung that his October 2005 meeting with Pope Benedict left a deep impression on him.

Later, after the Pope's trip to Bavaria in September 2006, Beckenbauer began to immerse himself in the Pontiff's writings. As a result of his reading, Beckenbauer returned to the active practice of his faith.

"Benedict XVI leads people to the Church," Beckenbauer told Abendzeitung, "and I myself am the best example of that."

Selected twice as the European Footballer of the Year, he played in three World Cups - 1966, 1970 and 1974 - and managed the winning West Germany team in the 1990 game.

At the end of the 1990s, he led Germany's successful bid to host the 2006 World Cup and chaired its organising committee.

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Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Care package

Yesterday I received a care package from a trusted employee which included: a 20 oz bottle of Coke, a package of Oreo cookies, a stress-release ball, a Starbucks gift card, "Toasti-toes"--a self-activating foot warmer, a bottle of mineral bath soak, and a Monday thru Friday pill caddy.

Is she trying to tell me something?

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Pray for me

Our Lady of Fatima
Saint Joseph the Worker
Saint Lawrence
Saint Andrew
Saint Pius X

...added by the faithful...

Saint Jean-Marie Vianney
Saint Anthony of Padua
Saint Rita of Cascia
Saint Polycarp
Saint Thomas More
Blessed Margaret of Castello
Saint Francis de Sales
Saint Alphonsus Liguori
Sanit Louis-Marie Grignion de Montfort

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Ganswein: Versace. Benedict: Prada.

Meet the inspiration for the latest Versace look - the Pope's secretary

Richard Owen in Rome | www.timesonline.co.uk

Father Georg Gaenswein: 'ethical, austere - and elegant' (EPA/AP)

Donatella Versace has often raised eyebrows — and hemlines — with her outrageous designs for women. Yesterday, however, she stunned even blasé fashionistas by launching a “clergyman look” for men, inspired by Father Georg Gaenswein, the handsome 50-year-old private secretary to Pope Benedict XVI.

The outfit, modelled at the Milan menswear 2007-08 winter collection, features grey-black trousers and jacket with a clerical-style collar. “I was thinking of an austere, severe and ethical man. I find Father Georg’s austerity very elegant,” said Ms Versace.

Spirituality was “not the same as bigotry”, she said, adding that she was open to the idea of civil unions between gays or heterosexual couples. Proposals to make civil unions legal in Italy have divided the centre-left Government of Romano Prodi and aroused fierce opposition in the Vatican.

“It is the moment to display the muscles of the mind, not those of the gym,” Ms Versace said. “Fashion needs more rigour.” She said she had used a fabric that was “as soft to the touch as the wings of an angel”. The result was dubbed “priestly chic” by fashion writers.

Father Gaenswein, an amateur pilot and keen tennis player, hardly ever makes public comments, least of all on the frequent tributes to his good looks in Italian gossip columns. Last year he broke cover to complain about satirical sketches on Italian TV depicting the Pope. “Satire is fine. But these things have no intellectual quality and offend men of the Church,” he said. The sketches have been dropped.

Father Gaenswein became personal secretary to Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger in 2003, and moved into the Vatican with him after he was elected Pope. When Father Gaenswein turned 50 last July he gave a rare interview to Vatican Radio revealing their daily routine.

“The Pope’s day begins with Mass at 7am, followed by morning prayer and a period of contemplation,” he said. “Afterwards we eat breakfast together, and my day then begins with sorting through the correspondence, which arrives in considerable quantity.” He said that he accompanied the Pope to morning audiences, followed by lunch together, a “short walk” and a rest, after which “I present to the Pope documents which require his signature, or his study and approval”.

A Versace spokeswoman confirmed that the clergyman look had been inspired by Father Gaenswein, adding: “Few other places in the world are as influential as the Vatican.”

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March for Life

March for Life – Washington DC

View EWTN’s live and complete coverage of the most important pro-life event of the year January 22 at 11:00 a.m. Eastern time (encore at 10:00 p.m.) You’ll be a part of it all, from interviews with participants from across the U.S. to panel discussions with pro-life speakers. Then follow the March for Life procession up Constitution Avenue, and join the Rally for Life at the Washington Monument.

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Question

Why does "life insurance" pay when you die? Shouldn't it be called "death insurance?"

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Bumper sticker

Bumper sticker of the week found at Spirit Daily:

"Be kinder to people than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle."

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Friends. Good.

It's good to have friends with whom you can reconnect after an 18 year absence.

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Monday, January 15, 2007

Saint Dymphna

Feast day: May 15
Patroness of the Nervous, and Emotionally Disturbed
and the Mentally Ill

Saint Dymphna was born in the seventh century. Her father, Damon, a chieftain of great wealth and power, was a pagan. Her mother was a very beautiful and devout Christian.

Dymphna was fourteen when her mother died. After his wife's death, Damon is said to have been afflicted with a mental illness, brought on by his grief and because Dympna resembled her mother, he conceived a passion for his daughter. He sent messengers throughout his own and other lands to find some woman of noble birth, resembling his wife, who would be willing to marry him. When none could be found his evil advisers told him to marry his own daughter. Dymphna fled from the castle together with Saint Gerebernus, her chaplain, and two other friends. They settled at Gheel, near the Belgian city of Antwerp, where Dympna devoted herself to helping the poor and the sick.

Damon found them in Belgium, tracing them through coins spent on their journey. When Dympna continued to reject the unnatural marriage, her father gave orders that Gerebernus' head be cut off. He tried to persuade his daughter to return to Ireland with him. When she refused, he drew his sword and struck off her head. She was then only fifteen years of age.

Dymphna received the crown of martyrdom in defense of her purity about the year 620. She is the patron of those suffering from nervous and mental afflictions. Many miracles have taken place at her shrine, built on the spot where she was buried in Gheel, Belgium, where her blood was shed. Cures for madness and epilepsy were attributed to Dympna's intercession and in the thirteenth century the bishop of Cambrai commissioned a "Life of Dympna" which drew on oral tradition. Local people also discovered two marble tombs which they believed angels had brought in honor of the saints.

Today she is Belgium's patron saint of the insane, and for centuries Gheel has been noted for the care and treatment of the mentally ill.

Taken from: Celtic Saints; Martin Wallace; Chronicle Books and Favorite Novenas to the Saints; A St. Joseph Prayer book; Catholic Book Publishing Co.

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Anathema!

a·nath·e·ma /ənæθəmə

–noun, plural -mas.
1. a person or thing detested or loathed: That subject is anathema to him.
2. a person or thing accursed or consigned to damnation or destruction.
3. a formal ecclesiastical curse involving excommunication.
4. any imprecation of divine punishment.
5. a curse; execration.

[Origin: 1520–30; <>]

a·pos·tate /ə pɒsteɪt, -tɪt/

–noun
1. a person who forsakes his religion, cause, party, etc.
–adjective
2. of or characterized by apostasy.

[Origin: 1300–50; ME <>]

hea·then /hiðən/

–noun
1. an unconverted individual of a people that do not acknowledge the God of the Bible; a person who is neither a Jew, Christian, nor Muslim; pagan.
2. an irreligious, uncultured, or uncivilized person.

–adjective
3. of or pertaining to heathens; pagan.
4. irreligious, uncultured, or uncivilized.

[Origin: bef. 900; ME hethen, OE hǣthen, akin to G Heide, heidnisch (adj.), ON heithingi (n.), heithinn (adj.), Goth haithno (n.); perh. akin to heath]

her·e·tic /n. hɛrɪtɪk; adj. hɛrɪtɪk, hərɛtɪk/

–noun
1. a professed believer who maintains religious opinions contrary to those accepted by his or her church or rejects doctrines prescribed by that church.
2. Roman Catholic Church. a baptized Roman Catholic who willfully and persistently rejects any article of faith.
3. anyone who does not conform to an established attitude, doctrine, or principle.
–adjective
4. heretical.

[Origin: 1300–50; ME heretik <>ǐn to choose) + -ikos -ic]

pa·gan /peɪgən/

–noun
1. one of a people or community observing a polytheistic religion, as the ancient Romans and Greeks.
2. a person who is not a Christian, Jew, or Muslim.
3. an irreligious or hedonistic person.
–adjective
4. pertaining to the worship or worshipers of any religion that is neither Christian, Jewish, nor Muslim.
5. of, pertaining to, or characteristic of pagans.
6. irreligious or hedonistic.

[Origin: 1325–75; ME <>]

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Bye-bye tie-dye

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Sunday, January 14, 2007

Applause. What's the point?

Found at http://thecrescat.blogspot.com/

Applause, Really??

A new trend has hit my parish, heaven help me. Applause after mass. What the hell are these barking clapping seals going on about?

Ohhhh. I know, since the whole set up is for the congregation's entertainment we forgot what was really going on. THE SACRIFICE OF THE MASS!

I unloaded my disgust a few days ago. I had some earnest prayer follow. Then decided I should just get over myself. What did I mean by that? I myself am not sure. I certainly didn't mean that I was willing to let myself get lulled into complacency while all the traditions of the Church crumple at my feet.

Some times anger is good, damn good. We should be angry at injustice. We shouldn't be forced to try and "get over ourselves" and accept the degradation of the mass. We should NEVER have to make a decision... do I leave this rite or Church or do I just shut my mouth and sit quietly in my pew.

The
Holy Mother Church has been shackled, bound, gagged and blindfolded. Do I just get over myself and walk away or do I continue to utter my contempt? The more I think about it, the more I chose the latter. I can't be silent. I don't want to be silent. Call me a glutton for punishment.

The truth of the matter is, when I decided to get over myself my passion died. I have passion for the Church that is why I get so overwhelmed. I need to redirect my passion and anger into promoting change instead of feeding it into my despair. Now THAT is getting over myself and getting into the Church again.

The Church MILITANT! Too many martyrs and holy souls died for the Truths of the Church regardless of what heresy was popular at the time. That IS being a Catholic of the Sword. But I contend that is out of love that we feel these rages and injustices and take them as personal attacks. That LOVE is what breeds the warm & fuzzy trad. The two can be synonymous.

I decided to get back into the ring of things at church. I just can't throw up my hands in desperation and surrender my resolve to the aging hippies that dominate the lay ministries. Heaven help me.

I better look into getting some blood pressure medication prescribed. Pray for me.

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At Cana in Galilee

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Ice, ice baby

The parish courtyard fountain this morning.
The thermometer read 27 degrees at 7:30 a.m.

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Saturday, January 13, 2007

Rethinking Communion in the Hand

I direct you to Fr. Tim Finigan’s blog post of today. Very well said Father.

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Friday, January 12, 2007

How did we miss this?

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A Call to Arms

Thus saith Jeffrey Smith at The Roving Medievalist:

Stop worrying. Keep praying. Gently, without rancor stand your ground, knowing you're not alone. Deal with the old guard as you would with children. After all, most of them haven't grown up, have they? Yes, dear, I know you want a jacuzzi in the baptismal font, and a felt banner of Che Guevarra instead of that nasty old statue of St. Augustine, and married priests, and womyn priests, and gay marriage, and bongos in the sanctuary, but you can't always get what you want. Didn't a song written around the time your opinions ossified say that? ( I know, blast it! I said without rancor and gently, but I'm talking to you, not to them. Now, kindly let me finish. ) Don't take them all that seriously. They're at the end of their run and they're having a hard time accepting it. Some will whine. Some will fold up. Some will go on the attack. there's the rub, rear-guard actions by the defeated can be nasty, but they fade away in the end.

Now, what can you do besides being patient with the old guard? Simple, and it's my main point that I was going to make before you started distracting me with your dratted objections. ENCOURAGE!!!!! Encourage all the wonderful new artists, and composers, and musicians, and architects. Make sure they know their work is appreciated and that the attacks of the old-fashioned proponents of "less is more, get that crucifix out of my worship space" crowd are the fleeting tantrums of a vanishing breed. PRAY!!! Both for the artists and for the old guard. Pray for faithful young priests and faithful middle-aged bishops and a continuance of the surge in vocations. Above all, pray for God's continued protection of His Church from the forces, or should I say the force (you know who I mean) who would attack it. Be patient, be joyful, be faithful. The Church will prevail. No one's going to damage it beyond repair. The tide has turned.

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

We are in the end times!

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Reverend Lord Loren the Kind of Eschaton End
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

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This says it all!

From a FAQ of churchbuilding.com:

Our church was built for the Latin rituals. Can it be renovated to support the current rituals?

YES. A Latin church's focus is the Tabernacle. Our focus today is the assembly and its actions.

A church's geometrical proportions give us direction for refocusing the interiors from the linear focus on the Tabernacle to today's multi-focii of the assembly.

Man v. God. Who do you think ultimately is victorious?

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Mentos: The Freshmaker


Many misguided, ill-catechized Catholics believe this is "liturgy." Pray for these poor souls.

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Ad orientem

Archbishop Burke of St. Louis celebrates a Novus Ordo Mass
ad orientem at Assumption Grotto in December 2006.

Please allow me to direct you to a blog post of last October by Mr. Brian Murphy at Vivat Jesus regarding the ad orientem posture of the priest at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. There is absolutely no good reason for the priest-celebrant to assume the versus populum posture other than being a “ring-master,” and “cheerleader” for the sacred synaxis. Please excuse the sarcasm, but I truly prefer celebrating the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass leading the flock to the New Jerusalem. Many other clerics and laity agree. In his post, Mr. Murphy links to the Te Deum Laudemus blog where Diane is blessed by reverent Novus Ordo Masses celebrated at the Assumption Grotto in Detroit Michigan.

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My people are everywhere

(Psst. Bishop Belotti. Just to remind you--
he's looking over your shoulder. Be good.)

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Pray for cancer sufferers

Saint Peregrine, pray for them.

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No more Spring Break

Kern County school board votes for return to traditional vacation names

The Kern County High School board of trustees has decided to abolish “Winter Recess” and “Spring Break” and replace them with “Christmas Recess” and “Easter Recess.”

By a 4-1 vote, the trustees made the name change at their meeting on Dec. 21 for the 37,000-student school district. “Everybody around here is ecstatic about it,” says Chad Vegas, the board member who was behind the change. “In Bakersfield, this is not a controversial issue. The heat has all been from the media, from the liberal press in San Francisco and Los Angeles.”

Vegas, a pastor at Sovereign Grace Church in Bakersfield, was first elected to the board two years ago, receiving more than 63,000 votes – the highest vote total of any candidate in the history of Kern High School board of trustee elections. “It was a very controversial race,” he said. “My two opponents branded me ‘Christian right wing,' and spent around $300,000 to defeat me. We spent $29,000 – and won.”

In the November 2006 election, three new board members were elected, including a Vegas ally. “Finally, I had somebody to second my motions,” said Vegas. He and the three new board members formed the majority for the 4-1 vote to rename the school holidays. The lone dissenter was the sole trustee left from the old board.

The decision reverses a change made in 1988, when the secular names replaced the traditional ones. “We’re just trying to uphold American cultural and religious history,” said Vegas. “Americans for Separation of Church and State, the ACLU, some inter-religious groups have threatened a lawsuit, but we have not seen one. They know they don’t have a winnable case.”

The board on which Vegas serves sets policy for 26 high schools in Kern County. -- from http://www.calcatholic.com/

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Vocations Surge

The Priest Shortage Isn’t Over, But Seminaries Are Filling Up

By Tom Drake | Register Senior Writer | January 14-20, 2007 Issue

SAVANNAH, Ga. — It’s vocations awareness week — but most Catholics aren’t aware of which dioceses are having successes with vocations.

Read more at National Catholic Register.

N.B. Bishop Olmsted will be ordaining six young men in June for the Phoenix Diocese. Deo Gratias!

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Pay-per-view?

A trend in funeral services is to include a webcast of the services:

· Family and friends, who could not otherwise attend the funeral, are able to view the service over the Internet through a webcam hookup. Usually, viewers must first key in a pass code before they can watch the service.

· Supporters point out that mourners watching a webcast of a service is similar to people watching a televised funeral of a famous person. It's a way for people who can't come in person to pay respect to the family and grieve.

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Everything old is new again

Visit the website of St. Raymond of Peñafort Roman Catholic Church in Springfield, VA to see a nice blend of contemporary and traditional architecture and appointments in their new church. The parish must be commended for its attempt to integrate the antique font and other “castoffs.” In my opinion, an altar rail would have been an excellent addition. Too bad the freestanding altar seems obtrusive.

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Stem cell breakthrough

Vatican official welcomes amniotic stem-cell advance

Vatican, Jan. 9, 2007 (CWNews.com) - The president of the Pontifical Council for Health Care has welcomed a new breakthrough in research using stem cells from amniotic fluids.

Cardinal Javier Lozano Barragan told a Vatican Radio audience that the latest discovery was welcome because it allowed for the stem cells to be harvested without any threat to the life of the donor.

The Church, the cardinal pointed out, does not object to stem-cell research in itself, but to the harvesting in which human embryos are destroyed in order to obtain stem cells. The use of amniotic fluid involves no such destruction of human life.

The cardinal hailed the announcement that the stem cells obtained from amniotic fluid could be used to generate tissues for brains, nerves, muscles, and body organs. The research unveiled by a team composed of scientists from Harvard and Wake Forest universities showed that these stem cells matured as rapidly as stem cells from embryos, showed even greater versatility, and could be used to produce body tissues without tumors. The technique shows enormous potential for the treatment of diseases.

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Buon giorno a tutti

Pope Benedict XVI greets the faithful
during a general audience today.

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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

One Family in Christ

The Phoenix Diocesan Charity and Development Appeal 2007 began today with the annual kick-off luncheon. The appeal this year has a prayer commitment component added. The above image has on the reverse of the card the following Stewardship Mealtime Prayer:

Bless us Lord, and these gifts we are about to receive.
Thank You for Your blessings on our family
today and throughout the year.
We ask that You bless and assist those in our diocese who
need our prayers because we are all One Family in Christ.
Bless those who are hungry, homeless
or struggling to come closer to You.
Bless the children, teens and our Seminarians
in their journey to Christ.
Help us all become more like Jesus in sharing
the gifts that You have given us.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Holy Family art piece was commissioned by the Diocese to serve as a constant reminder of the annual Appeal and those agencies and people who are assisted through the generosity of donors.

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Monday, January 08, 2007

His Baptism

Peter proceeded to speak to those gathered
in the house of Cornelius, saying:

“In truth, I see that God shows no partiality.
Rather, in every nation whoever fears him and acts uprightly
is acceptable to him.
You know the word that he sent to the Israelites
as he proclaimed peace through Jesus Christ, who is Lord of all,
what has happened all over
Judea,
beginning in
Galilee after the baptism
that John preached,
how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth
with the Holy Spirit and power.
he went about doing good
and healing all those oppressed by the devil,
for God was with him.” -- Acts
10:34-38

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Ahchoo

I got a cold in my nose.

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Sunday, January 07, 2007

Great Wisdom

Cardinal Urges Return to Traditional Catholic Practices
By The Universe: Catholics in
England & Wales need to return to the Church’s traditional spiritual practices, according to the Archbishop of Westminster.

Writing in his pastoral letter for the feast of the Epiphany, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor strongly encouraged people to return to the regular reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation and to take part in Holy Hour prayer with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament.

“These are truly part of Catholic tradition and devotion and are nourishment to our faith, and I would encourage them,” he said.

The cardinal also pressed the importance of other Catholic practices that have slipped by the wayside in recent times. In particular he stressed the importance of eating less food on Fridays, which should be carried out “not only for self discipline, but as an act of identity and solidarity with the poor.”

As part of this the cardinal also took the time in his letter to urge Catholics to embrace CAFOD’s ‘Live Simply’ campaign, which calls on people be responsible consumers, using the world’s resources carefully and gracefully.

He concluded: “In wishing you the happiness of this great feast of Epiphany, ask yourself what you can bring as your gift to Our Saviour.

“May I suggest that one such gift is a little time every day. If we don’t remind ourselves of Jesus Our Saviour in some way or another then we lose touch with Him.

“I find it essential in my own life to give at least some time each day to think about Him, to be with Him and to pray.

“That is really the point of the feast of the Epiphany.”

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Epiphany Statement

Those who would like to express their support for the 'Epiphany Declaration' (see Saturday's post) may do so here:

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/Epiphany_Declaration/

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With water and the Spirit

Pope Benedict XVI baptizes a baby
at the Vatican's Sistine Chapel today.

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Saturday, January 06, 2007

From Shawn Tribe @ TNLM

Epiphany Declaration Published: English Speaking Writers and Intellectuals Join Chorus of International Support for possible Papal Motu Proprio

Declaration Supporting Any Papal Initiative
to Allow the Freer Use of the 1962 Missale Romanum

We, Catholic laity and clergy, predominantly of various English-speaking lands, express our hope and desire to see the form of liturgy used prior to and during the Second Vatican Council given, again, greater freedom of use in the life of the Catholic Church and we express our enthusiastic support for any papal initiative to the same end.

We join in spirit as well with those figures of yesteryear who, in 1971, successfully petitioned the Holy See for the continued use of the classical Roman liturgy, deemed by them and by us as a spiritual and cultural treasure of inestimable value. Today in a similar spirit of love for the Church and her rich liturgical tradition, we unite our own voices with those heard in the recent past: with those of Agatha Christie, Cyril Connolly, Kenneth Clark, Graham Greene, Cecil Day Lewis, Malcolm Muggeridge and Iris Murdoch. Moreover, we join with the likes of such esteemed individuals as Evelyn Waugh in expressing our profound attachment to this liturgical treasure of Church.

As such, we wish to voice our support for the possible initiative of the Holy Father, Benedict XVI, which is thought to allow for the wider usage of the classical Roman liturgy in the hope that:

1. Pastorally, the "rightful aspirations" (cf. Ecclesia Dei adflicta) of Catholics attached to the classical form of the Roman liturgy might be more freely and readily realized in the Latin rite;

2. The ancient liturgical usages of the West might be fostered as living forms of worship in the Church, enjoying full right of citizenship in the same – the classical Roman rite as well as the ancient liturgical rites and uses of the religious orders and primatial sees which formed a part of the living, organic and legitimate liturgical diversity of the Church until recent times.

Finally, we believe that the presence of the classical form of the Roman liturgy in broader ecclesial and parish life will positively contribute to the ongoing efforts to implement the liturgical reforms promulgated by the Second Vatican Council as delineated in Sacrosanctum Concilium, and as envisioned by the Fathers of the aforesaid Council.

Saturday, January 6
Feast of the Epiphany

/signed/

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Christus mansionem benedicat

20+C+M+B+07

Magi ab Oriente

Men wearing costumes representing the Magi,
carry gifts to Pope Benedict XVI after Angelus prayer
in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican on Epiphany.

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Deep in prayer

Pope Benedict XVI's secretary Georg Ganswein
prays during Mass on the Feast of the Epiphany in St. Peter's.

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