Wednesday, May 30, 2007

O Salutaris Hostia

News from Argentina

Una Polemica Disposición del Papa Benedicto XVI
Afirman que es inminente el retorno de la misa en latín
El Papa levantará la restricción actual. Pero el uso de esa lengua no será obligatorio. por Julio Algañaraz | El Vaticano Corresponsal
jalganaraz@clarin.com

http://www.clarin.com/diario/2007/05/28/elmundo/i-02401.htm

Vuelve la misa en latín. La quiere el Papa desde siempre. El cardenal Joseph Ratzinger, elegido como Benedicto XVI hace dos años, se opuso a la reforma litúrgica promovida por el Concilio Vaticano II y llevada a cabo por Pablo VI. Según aseguraron fuentes vaticanas a Clarín, ya "todo está listo", incluso el motu proprio o "indulto" que será anunciado pronto.

Durante 1.500 años la misa tradicional católica fue dicha en latín y las normas fueron sistematizadas por el Concilio de Trento, en 1570, en plena Contrarreforma, vigiladas por la Santa Inquisición y el Santo Oficio, que en nuestros tiempos fueron rebautizados Congregación para la Doctrina de la Fe, cuyo prefecto o "ministro" fue durante más de dos décadas el cardenal Ratzinger hasta que lo eligieron Papa.

La reimplantación de los ritos tridentinos no será obligatorio para los fieles, pero quedarán abolidas definitivamente las restricciones actuales. Sólo un obispo podrá prohibir la misa tridentina en su diócesis y dándole al Vaticano las razones que explicarán ese gesto.

El regreso de la misa en latín apunta en las intenciones de Benedicto XVI también a absorber definitivamente la escisión de los ultraconservadores secuaces del obispo tradicionalista francés Marcel Lefebvre, quien consumó un cisma en 1988 al consagrar a cuatro obispos. Juan Pablo II debió excomulgarlo a él y a su comunidad, que ya en los años 70 había entrado en crisis con Roma cuando Lefebvre ordenó a varios sacerdotes en el cuartel general de los ultramontanos en Ecóne, Suiza, donde se encuentra la Comunidad San Pío X y su principal seminario. Pablo VI lo suspendió a divinis.

Dos cardenales latinoamericanos conservadores confirmaron que pronto el Papa firmará el documento que reimplanta la misa en latín. En diciembre lo anunció el protodiácono de la Iglesia, el chileno Jorge Arturo Medina Estévez. El purpurado integra la Comisión Ecclesia Dei (Iglesia de Dios), que se había reunido entonces para considerar la liberalización de la misa en latín por iniciativa del mismo Benedicto XVI.

"Hemos hecho algunas correcciones al texto", explicó el cardenal Medina Estévez. El presidente de la comisión es el colombiano Darío Castrillon Hoyos, quien hace tiempo presentó el texto al Pontífice. El cardenal niega a quien lo quiera escuchar que la medida represente un acrobático salto mortal hacia atrás que mortifica las normas litúrgicas del Concilio Vaticano II realizadas por Pablo VI. Desde 1969, las reformas impusieron los idiomas nacionales en las misas e hicieron dar media vuelta al sacerdote celebrante, que desde entonces mira hacia los fieles y no al altar durante la mayor parte de la misa, además de otros cambios, como los cantos en lenguas folklóricas y el uso de instrumentos musicales nacionales.

El cardenal belga Godfried Daneels, en una declaración que difundió ayer la agencia Associated Press, cuya vaticanista Nicole Winfield dedicó al tema un largo artículo, dijo que "el rito no es lo importante sino lo que viene después". "No podemos volver atrás. El Vaticano II es un concilio como todos los demás". Quiso decir que sus decisiones, aprobadas por el Papa, son obligatorias.

Según el cardenal Daneels, que es uno de los escasos purpurados progresistas del actual colegio cardenalicio, una mayor celebración de la misa tridentina podría polarizar a la Iglesia y conducir a "la negación" del Concilio II.

La misa tradicional en latín nunca fue abolida del todo, pero eran necesarios permisos especiales de los obispos. La liturgia tradicionalista se realiza siempre en lugares de culto utilizados por grupos ultraconservadores de la Iglesia, que están muy entusiasmados con la voluntad del actual Papa de regresar al latín, a la música sacra y los cantos gregorianos. Benedicto XVI ha repetido varias veces que los sacerdotes deben estar mejor preparados para el uso del latín en las misas y quiere "latinizar" progresivamente la liturgia de las misas reformadas, que prevalecen hoy largamente en las celebraciones católicas de todo el mundo.

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Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Easter Sunday Mass 2007 Toronto

Enjoy the beauty!

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Monday, May 28, 2007

We Remember

As We Remember Those That Protect Us,
On Memorial Day And Always...

Greater love than this no one has, than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. – John 15:13

Dear Father in Heaven,

Thank You for the gift of life, the gift of our country, and the gift of freedom.

Thank You for the men and women who protect these gifts, at home and abroad, even at the sacrifice of their own lives, and for their families. They are the true heroes among us.

Today we pause to remember all those who have laid down their lives since our nation’s creation, so that we can continue to enjoy the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Let Your perpetual light shine upon them, and grant them eternal rest.

Dear God, please protect all who serve our great and blessed country, who fight to keep us free from injustice and harm. Send out Your angels upon them and cover them with the precious blood of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. In His Name we pray, and for His sake. Amen.

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Sunday, May 27, 2007

L'Art pour L'Art

Two Acolytes Censing, Pentecost
Simeon Solomon (1840-1905)

1863 | Watercolor | dimensions: 40.2 x 35 cm.

Simeon Solomon was one of the most distinguished painters of Victorian England's Aesthetic movement. Together with Swinburne, Rossetti, and Burne-Jones, Solomon delighted in the passionate and sensual aspects of life. Although these Pre-Raphaelites did not resist allegorical and classical motifs, they nonetheless led inspired those who held the theory of 'L'Art pour L'Art,' or 'Art for Art's Sake.' First invented by French poet, novelist and critic, Theophile Gautier (1811-1872), the theory denied that art could, or should, be in anyway useful (10).

Two Acolytes Censing, Pentecost Two Acolytes Censing, Pentecost (1863) remains one of Solomon's best known works since it depicts a highly sensual ritual. Nothing indicates that the painting refers to a literary work or has an allegorical meaning; instead, the viewer is supposed to share Solomon's aesthetic appreciation of church ritual. Even though he was Jewish, Solomon, like other Aesthetics, was deeply drawn to ornate High Church and Roman Catholic ceremonies featuring narcissus and arum lilies banked before the alter, candles, altar lights, clouds of incense dispensed from censers, and elaborate dress (14).

Two Acolytes captures the best of those opulent High Church features. Here we see two boys dressed in brightly colored robes. The left acolyte swings a censer fumigating incense. Atop the altar stand a lavishly gilded candlestick and a vase of white lilies. Solomon painted with broad strokes that favor color-- gold, white, and red--over precise detail. It is as if we are sitting among the congregation, caring not so much for specific minutia but plenty for ceremony as a whole. We care less about the robes' embroidery than their deep glowing color, less about the censer's craftsmanship than the pungent fumes it emits.

Two Acolytes was meant to be beautiful not useful. We do not learn a lesson or gaze introspectively upon the boys. The painting is purely aesthetic, although whether or not we like it is another question. -- www.victorianweb.org/.../paintings/2.html

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Circles, Terraces, and Spheres

Dante Alighieri is shown holding a copy of his epic poem The Divine Comedy. He is pointing to a procession of sinners being led down to the circles of Hell on the left. Behind him are the seven terraces of Purgatory, with Adam and Eve representing Earthly Paradise on top. Above them, the sun and the moon represent Heavenly Paradise, whilst on the right is Dante's home city of Florence. The illustration of Florence is self-referential, depicting the recently completed and much celebrated cathedral dome inside which the fresco is painted. -- Wikipedia

Ninth Day | Saturday, Vigil of Pentecost

Thou, on those who evermore Thee confess and Thee Adore, in Thy sevenfold gift, Descend; Give Them Comfort when they die; Give them Life with Thee on high; Give them joys which never end. Amen

The Fruits of the Holy Spirit

The gifts of the Holy Spirit perfect the supernatural virtues by enabling us to practice them with greater docility to divine inspiration. As we grow in the knowledge and love of God under the direction of the Holy Spirit, our service becomes more sincere and generous, the practice of virtue more perfect. Such acts of virtue leave the heart filled with joy and consolation and are known as Fruits of the Holy Spirit. These Fruits in turn render the practice of virtue more attractive and become a powerful incentive for still greater efforts in the service of God, to serve Whom is to reign.

Prayer

Come, O Divine Spirit, fill my heart with Thy heavenly fruits, Thy charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness, faith, mildness, and temperance, that I may never weary in the service of God, but by continued faithful submission to Thy inspiration may merit to be united eternally with Thee in the love of the Father and the Son. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Friday, May 25, 2007

An abomination to the Lord

The eighth commandment of God is: Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor. – Exodus 20:16

By the eighth commandment we are commanded to speak the truth in all things, but especially in what concerns the good name and honor of others. “Wherefore, put away lying and speak truth each one with his neighbor, because we are members of one another.” - Ephesians 4:25

The eighth commandment forbids lies, rash judgment, detraction, calumny, and the telling of secrets we are bound to keep. “Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord.” -- Proverbs 12:22

A person commits the sin of rash judgment when, without sufficient reason, he believes something harmful to another's character. “Before thou inquire, blame no man.” -- Ecclesiasticus 11:7

A person commits the sin of detraction when, without a good reason, he makes known the hidden faults of another. “A good name is better than great riches, and good favor is above silver and gold.” -- Proverbs 22:1

A person commits the sin of calumny or slander when by lying he injures the good name of another. “Devise not a lie against thy brother, neither do the like against thy friend. -- Ecclesiasticus 7:13

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Eighth Day | Friday, 7th Week of Easter

Bend the stubborn heart and will, melt the frozen warm the chill. Guide the steps that go astray!

The Gift of Wisdom

Embodying all the other gifts, as charity embraces all the other virtues, Wisdom is the most perfect of the gifts. Of wisdom it is written "all good things came to me with her, and innumerable riches through her hands." It is the gift of Wisdom that strengthens our faith, fortifies hope, perfects charity, and promotes the practice of virtue in the highest degree. Wisdom enlightens the mind to discern and relish things divine, in the appreciation of which earthly joys lose their savor, whilst the Cross of Christ yields a divine sweetness according to the words of the Saviour: "Take up thy cross and follow me, for my yoke is sweet and my burden light.

Prayer

Come, O Spirit of Wisdom, and reveal to my soul the mysteries of heavenly things, their exceeding greatness, power and beauty. Teach me to love them above and beyond all the passing joys and satisfactions of earth. Help me to attain them and possess them for ever. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Thursday, May 24, 2007

Misneach *

He was a terror to any snake that came in his path, whether it was the cold, slimy reptile sliding along the ground or the more dangerous snake that oppresses men through false teachings. And he drove the snakes out of the minds of men, snakes of superstition and brutality and cruelty. ~Arthur Brisbane

* Gaelic for "Courage."

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Seventh Day | Thursday, 7th Week of Easter

Heal our wounds--our strength renews; On our dryness pour Thy dew, Wash the stains of guilt away.

The Gift of Counsel

The gift of Counsel endows the soul with supernatural prudence, enabling it to judge promptly and rightly what must done, especially in difficult circumstances. Counsel applies the principles furnished by Knowledge and Understanding to the innumerable concrete cases that confront us in the course of our daily duty as parents, teachers, public servants, and Christian citizens. Counsel is supernatural common sense, a priceless treasure in the quest of salvation. "Above all these things, pray to the Most High, that He may direct thy way in truth."

Prayer

Come, O Spirit of Counsel, help and guide me in all my ways, that I may always do Thy holy will. Incline my heart to that which is good; turn it away from all that is evil, and direct me by the straight path of Thy commandments to that goal of eternal life for which I long.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Wolves and sheep

From Fr. John Zuhlsdorf (WDTPRS? Blog):

“The Pope is under massive attack in the Italian press. Today 50,000 people came for the Wednesday Audience! It was really hot here today.”

“Pray for me that I may not flee for fear of the wolves.” – Pope Benedict XVI| April 24, 2005 (and Fr. LWG every morning!)

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The hands of Christ

Sixth Day | Wednesday, 7th Week of Easter

If Thou take Thy grace away, nothing pure in man will stay, All his good is turn'd to ill.

The Gift of Understanding

Understanding, as a gift of the Holy Spirit, helps us to grasp the meaning of the truths of our holy religion BY faith we know them, but by Understanding we learn to appreciate and relish them. It enables us to penetrate the inner meaning of revealed truths and through them to be quickened to newness of life. Our faith ceases to be sterile and inactive, but inspires a mode of life that bears eloquent testimony to the faith that is in us; we begin to "walk worthy of God in all things pleasing, and increasing in the knowledge of God."

Prayer

Come, O Spirit of Understanding, and enlighten our minds, that we may know and believe all the mysteries of salvation; and may merit at last to see the eternal light in Thy Light; and in the light of glory to have a clear vision of Thee and the Father and the Son. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Income and Expense

Last evening I met with our newly renewed Finance Council to ready the budget for the next fiscal year. The members have long histories of expertise in civic, non-profit, and parish finances. The Lord has once again blessed this parish with faithful people who recognize their God-given talents in living their vocations as good and faithful stewards. . . Many thanks, wonderful people of God!

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Blessed be Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar

Last evening a group of Saint Charles Borromeo parishioners and I got together to plan a traditional Corpus Christi Procession. The candlelight procession is set for 8:00 p.m. the evening of Sunday, June 10. Several families, ministries, and organizations will decorate altars, construct canopies, lead the faithful in the bilingual (Spanish/English) recitation of the Holy Rosary, and sing traditional hymns including O Salutaris Hostia, Tantum Ergo, Holy God We Praise Thy Name, and Bendito, Bendito. We were all excited about reviving this beautiful Catholic devotion in our little corner of the world! Order of Service:

Exposition

O Salutaris Hostia

+

Apostle’s Creed / Credo de los Apóstoles
Our Father / Padre Nuestro
Hail Mary / Ave Maria

Procession / Procesión

Altar 1 - La Resurrección
Bendito, Bendito (V1)

Altar 2 - The Ascension
Holy God We Praise Thy Name (V1)

Altar 3 - La Venida del Espíritu Santo
Bendito, Bendito (V2)

Altar 4 - The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Holy God We Praise Thy Name (V2)

Altar 5 - La Coronación de la Virgen María
Bendito, Bendito (V3)

Return to the Altar of Sacrifice

Tantum Ergo Sacramentum

Divine Praises / Alabanzas de Desagravio

Benediction / Bendicion

Reposition

Holy God We Praise Thy Name (V3)

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Fifth Day | Tuesday, 7th Week of Easter

Light immortal! Light Divine! Visit Thou these hearts of Thine, And our inmost being fill!

The Gift of Knowledge

The gift of Knowledge enables the soul to evaluate created things at their true worth--in their relation to God. Knowledge unmasks the pretense of creatures, reveals their emptiness, and points out their only true purpose as instruments in the service of God. It shows us the loving care of God even in adversity, and directs us to glorify Him in every circumstance of life. Guided by its light, we put first things first, and prize the friendship of God beyond all else. "Knowledge is a fountain of life to him that possesseth it."

Prayer

Come, O Blessed Spirit of Knowledge, and grant that I may perceive the will of the Father; show me the nothingness of earthly things, that I may realize their vanity and use them only for Thy glory and my own salvation, looking ever beyond them to Thee, and Thy eternal rewards. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Monday, May 21, 2007

Fourth Day | Monday, 7th Week of Easter

Thou in toil art comfort sweet, Pleasant coolness in the heat, solace in the midst of woe.

The Gift of Fortitude

The Gift of Fortitude By the gift of Fortitude the soul is strengthened against natural fear, and supported to the end in the performance of duty. Fortitude imparts to the will an impulse and energy which move it to under take without hesitancy the most arduous tasks, to face dangers, to trample under foot human respect, and to endure without complaint the slow martyrdom of even lifelong tribulation. "He that shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved."

Prayer

Come, O Blessed Spirit of Fortitude, uphold my soul in time of trouble and adversity, sustain my efforts after holiness, strengthen my weakness, give me courage against all the assaults of my enemies, that I may never be overcome and separated from Thee, my God and greatest Good. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Third Day | 7th Sunday of Easter

Thou, of all consolers best, Visiting the troubled breast, Dost refreshing peace bestow.

The Gift of Piety

The gift of Piety begets in our hearts a filial affection for God as our most loving Father. It inspires us to love and respect for His sake persons and things consecrated to Him, as well as those who are vested with His authority, His Blessed Mother and the Saints, the Church and its visible Head, our parents and superiors, our country and its rulers. He who is filled with the gift of Piety finds the practice of his religion, not a burdensome duty, but a delightful service. Where there is love, there is no labor.

Prayer

Come, O Blessed Spirit of Piety, possess my heart. Enkindle therein such a love for God, that I may find satisfaction only in His service, and for His sake lovingly submit to all legitimate authority. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Saturday, May 19, 2007

21st Century Morality Play*

I viewed Spiderman 3 this week. Once again the classic struggle between good and evil is portrayed in this fantasy-fiction genre. The sin of pride rears its ugly head, while a repentant contrite spirit ultimately triumphs.

*Morality plays are a type of theatrical allegory in which the protagonist is met by personifications of various moral attributes who try to prompt him to choose a godly life over one of evil. The plays were most popular in Europe during the 15th and 16th century. Having grown out of the religiously based mystery plays of the Middle Ages, they represented a shift towards a more secular base for European theatre.

Most morality plays have a protagonist who represents either humanity as a whole (Everyman) or an entire social class (as in Magnificence). Antagonists and supporting characters are not individuals per se, but rather personifications of abstract virtues or vices, especially the Seven deadly sins. -- Wikipedia

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Second Day | Saturday, 6th Week of Easter

Come. Father of the poor. Come, treasures which endure; Come, Light of all that live!

The Gift of Fear

The gift of Fear fills us with a sovereign respect for God, and makes us dread nothing so much as to offend Him by sin. It is a fear that arises, not from the thought of hell, but from sentiments of reverence and filial submission to our heavenly Father. It is the fear that is the beginning of wisdom, detaching us from worldly pleasures that could in any way separate us from God. "They that fear the Lord will prepare their hearts, and in His sight will sanctify their souls."

Prayer

Come, O blessed Spirit of Holy Fear, penetrate my inmost heart, that I may set you, my Lord and God, before my face forever, help me to shun all things that can offend You, and make me worthy to appear before the pure eyes of Your Divine Majesty in heaven, where You live and reign in the unity of the ever Blessed Trinity, God world without end. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri

Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Friday, May 18, 2007

Novena to the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

First Day | Friday, 6th Week of Easter

Holy Spirit! Lord of Light! From Your clear celestial height, Your pure beaming radiance give!

Only one thing is important -- eternal salvation. Only one thing, therefore, is to be feared--sin· Sin is the result of ignorance, weakness, and indifference The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Light, of Strength, and of Love. With His sevenfold gifts He enlightens the mind, strengthens the will, and inflames the heart with love of God. To ensure our salvation we ought to invoke the Divine Spirit daily, for "The Spirit helpeth our infirmity. We know not what we should pray for as we ought. But the Spirit Himself asketh for us."

Prayer

Almighty and eternal God, Who hast vouchsafed to regenerate us by water and the Holy Spirit, and hast given us forgiveness all sins, vouchsafe to send forth from heaven upon us your sevenfold Spirit, the Spirit of Wisdom and Understanding, the Spirit of Counsel and fortitude, the Spirit of Knowledge and Piety, and fill us with the Spirit of Holy Fear. Amen.

1 Pater
1 Ave
7 Gloria Patri
Act of Consecration to the Holy Spirit

On my knees before the great multitude of heavenly witnesses, I offer myself, soul and body to You, Eternal Spirit of God. I adore the brightness of Your purity, the unerring keenness of Your justice, and the might of Your love. You are the Strength and Light of my soul. In You I live and move and am. I desire never to grieve You by unfaithfulness to grace and I pray with all my heart to be kept from the smallest sin against You. Mercifully guard my every thought and grant that I may always watch for Your light, and listen to Your voice, and follow Your gracious inspirations. I cling to You and give myself to You and ask You, by Your compassion to watch over me in my weakness. Holding the pierced Feet of Jesus and looking at His Five Wounds, and trusting in His Precious Blood and adoring His opened Side and stricken Heart, I implore You, Adorable Spirit, Helper of my infirmity, to keep me in Your grace that I may never sin against You. Give me grace, O Holy Spirit, Spirit of the Father and the Son to say to You always and everywhere, "Speak Lord for Your servant heareth." Amen.

Prayer for the Seven Gifts of the Holy Spirit

O Lord Jesus Christ Who, before ascending into heaven did promise to send the Holy Ghost to finish Your work in the souls of Your Apostles and Disciples, deign to grant the same Holy Spirit to me that He may perfect in my soul, the work of Your grace and Your love. Grant me the Spirit of Wisdom that I may despise the perishable things of this world and aspire only after the things that are eternal, the Spirit of Understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of Your divine truth, the Spirit of Counsel that I may ever choose the surest way of pleasing God and gaining heaven, the Spirit of Fortitude that I may bear my cross with You and that I may overcome with courage all the obstacles that oppose my salvation, the Spirit of Knowledge that I may know God and know myself and grow perfect in the science of the Saints, the Spirit of Piety that I may find the service of God sweet and amiable, and the Spirit of Fear that I may be filled with a loving reverence towards God and may dread in any way to displease Him. Mark me, dear Lord, with the sign of Your true disciples and animate me in all things with Your Spirit. Amen.

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Motu Propio News

http://www.milenio.com/index.php/2007/05/17/69688/

See also The New Liturgical Movement, Rorate Caeli,
and What Does the Prayer Really Say? for English.

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“Men of Galilee, why...?"

God mounts his throne to shouts of joy:
a blare of trumpets for the Lord.

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

NECN on Tridentine Latin Mass

Fiat! Fiat! Fiat!

After the time of the apostolic church, the term anathema has come to mean a form of extreme religious sanction beyond excommunication, known as major excommunication. The earliest recorded instance of the form is in the Council of Elvira (c. 306), and thereafter it became the common method of cutting off heretics. Cyril of Alexandria issued twelve anathemas against Nestorius in 431. In the fifth century, a formal distinction between anathema and excommunication evolved, where excommunication entailed cutting off a person or group from the rite of Eucharist and attendance at worship, while anathema meant a complete separation of the subject from the Church.

While "minor excommunication" could be incurred by associating with an excommunicate, and "major excommunication" could be imposed by any bishop, "anathema" was imposed by the Pope in a specific ceremony described in the Pontificale Romanum. Wearing a purple cope (the liturgical color of penitence) and holding a lighted candle, he, surrounded by twelve priests, also with lighted candles, pronounced the anathema with a formula that concluded with the phrase:

"Wherefore in the name of God the All-powerful, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, of Blessed Peter, Prince of the Apostles, and of all the saints, in virtue of the power which has been given us of binding and loosing in Heaven and on earth, we deprive (Name) himself and all his accomplices and all his abettors of the Communion of the Body and Blood of Our Lord, we separate him from the society of all Christians, we exclude him from the bosom of our Holy Mother the Church in Heaven and on earth, we declare him excommunicated and anathematized and we judge him condemned to eternal fire with Satan and his angels and all the reprobate, so long as he will not burst the fetters of the demon, do penance and satisfy the Church; we deliver him to Satan to mortify his body, that his soul may be saved on the day of judgment."
The priests responded: "Fiat, fiat, fiat" (Let it be done), and all, including the pontiff, cast their lighted candles on the ground. A notice is sent in writing to the priests and neighboring bishops of the name of the one who has been excommunicated and the cause of his excommunication, in order that they may have no communication with him. Although he is delivered to Satan and his angels, he can still, and is even bound to repent. The Pontifical gives the form for absolving him and reconciling him with the Church.

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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Jesus of Nazareth and Benedict XVI

“This book is… my personal search ‘for the face of the Lord.’” — Benedict XVI

From Jesus of Nazareth… “the great question that will be with us throughout this entire book: But what has Jesus really brought, then, if he has not brought world peace, universal prosperity, and a better world? What has he brought? The answer is very simple: God. He has brought God! He has brought the God who once gradually unveiled his countenance first to Abraham, then to Moses and the prophets, and then in the wisdom literature—the God who showed his face only in Israel, even though he was also honored among the pagans in various shadowy guises. It is this God, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, the true God, whom he has brought to the peoples of the earth. He has brought God, and now we know his face, now we can call upon him. Now we know the path that we human beings have to take in this world. Jesus has brought God and with God the truth about where we are going and where we come from: faith, hope, and love.”

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Monday, May 14, 2007

Luke 9:48 in Brazil

And [Jesus] said to them: Whosoever shall receive this child in my name, receiveth me; and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth him that sent me. For he that is the lesser among you all, he is the greater. -- Douay-Rheims

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Fatima Prayer

Oração de Nossa Senhora

A vidente Lúcia (Irmã Lúcia) conta na 4.ª Memória (livro da autoria da Irmã Lúcia) que Nossa Senhora em 13 de Julho de 1917 recomendou:

“Sacrificai-vos pelos pecadores e dizei muitas vezes, em especial sempre que fizerdes algum sacrifício: Ó Jesus, é por Vosso amor, pela conversão dos pecadores e em reparação pelos pecados cometidos contra o Imaculado Coração de Maria!”

Na mesma aparição, Nossa Senhora acrescentou:

Ó meu Jesus, perdoai-nos os nossos pecados, livrai-nos do fogo do inferno. Levai as almas todas para o Céu, principalmente as que mais precisarem da Vossa Misericórdia.

Prayer taught by Our Lady

Sister Lucia relates in the 4th Memoir that, on 13 July 1917, Our Lady recommended:

"Sacrifice yourselves for sinners, and say many times, especially when you make some sacrifice: O Jesus, it is for love of You, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary."

In the same apparition, Our Lady added:

O my Jesus, forgive us our sins. Save us from the fires of Hell; lead all souls into Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy.

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MOM

My mother had a great deal of trouble with me but I think she enjoyed it. - Mark Twain (and Fr LWG!)

All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother. - Abraham Lincoln

There is only one pretty child in the world, and every mother has it. - Chinese Proverb

Every man for the sake of the great blessed Mother in Heaven, and for the love of his own little mother on earth, should handle all womankind gently, and hold them in all Honor. - Alfred Lord Tennyson

God could not be everywhere and therefore he made mothers. - Jewish Proverb

A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials, heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine, desert us when troubles thicken around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts. - Washington Irving

My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw... All I am I owe to my mother... I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual and physical education I received from her. - George Washington

My mother had a slender, small body, but a large heart - a heart so large that everybody's grief and everybody's joy found welcome in it, and hospitable accommodation. - Mark Twain

[A] mother is one to whom you hurry when you are troubled. - Emily Dickinson

She had listened to nothing, but mothers hear certain things without listening. - Victor Hugo

No one in the world can take the place of your mother. Right or wrong, from her viewpoint you are always right. She may scold you for little things, but never for the big ones. - Harry Truman

Saturday, May 12, 2007

4 outta 7, not bad!

I was blessed today as I celebrated four sacraments: Baptisms at 9:30 a.m., Matrimony (Nuptial Mass) at 1:30 p.m., Penance at 3:30 p.m., and Communion (6th Sunday of Easter Mass) at 5:00 p.m. Deo gratias!

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Looking very Papal in South America

Pope Benedict XVI attends a meeting with Brazilian youths
at the Pacaembu soccer stadium in Sao Paulo May 10, 2007.

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Reborn by water and the Holy Spirit


Thanks be to God for the 47 new little Catholics baptized at Saint Charles Borromeo parish in three celebrations last Saturday and today. May God grant them, their parents, and Godparents many years!

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Friday, May 11, 2007

Pope canonizes Brazilian friar

Franciscan friar Antonio Galvao, Brazil's first native-born saint--credited with 5,000 miracle cures--was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI at an open-air mass today in Sao Paulo. (AP photo)

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Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Viagem Apostolica do Santo Padre ao Brasil

Pope Benedict XVI is greeted by Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva after his arrival in Sao Paulo. Photo by Reuters

The Apostolic Journey of His Holiness Benedict XVI to Brazil on EWTN

Arrival and Welcoming Ceremony

Pope Benedict XVI arrives in Sao Paulo, Brazil (Wed. May 9) - activities include: a brief address, greeting of the local authorities, and an open-top car journey to Sao Bento monastery to bless the faithful and spend the night.
5/9/07 3:00 PM (all times Eastern)
5/9/07 9:00 PM Encore
Meeting with President of Brazil
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 2, Thurs. May10) - activities include: private Mass at Sao Bento Monastery, courtesy visit to President Silva, meeting with representatives from other Christian confessions, and lunch with Bishops.
5/10/07 10:00 AM
5/11/07 3:00 AM Encore
Meeting with Youth
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 2, Thurs. May10): the Holy Father will address a gathering of young people at the “Paulo Machado de Carvalho” municipal stadium.
5/10/07 5:00 PM
5/10/ 9:00 PM Encore

Mass with Canonization from Campo de Marte

Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 3, Fri. May11): the Holy Father will preside over the Holy Mass and Canonization of Blessed Frei Galvao.
5/11/07 8:00 AM
5/11/07 9:00 PM Encore
Meeting with Bishops of Brazil at Sao Paulo Cathedral
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 3, Fri. May11) - activities include: farewell to Sao Bento Monastery, address to Brazilian Bishops at Cathedral of Sao Paulo, helicopter flight to Aparecida.
5/11/07 3:00 PM
5/12/07 2:00 AM Encore
Arrival in Aparecida
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 3, Fri. May11) - activities include: arrival in Aparecida, greeting of local authorities, and journey to Bom Jesus seminary to spend the night.
5/11/07 6:00 PM
5/12/07 6:00 AM Encore
Visit to Fazenda da Esperanca
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 4, Sat. May12) - activities include: visit to Fazenda da Esperanca in Guaratingueta, a centre for the rehabilitation of drug addicts, and lunch with representatives of the Bishops’ conference.
5/12/07 9:30 AM
5/12/07 1:00 PM Encore
Rosary in the Basilica of Our Lady of Aparecida
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 4, Sat. May12) - activities include: praying the rosary with the faithful in the Basilica of Our Lady of Aparecida, and a meeting with priests, seminarians, religious, and deacons.
5/12/07 5:00 PM
5/12/07 9:30 PM Encore
Mass to Inaugurate the General Council
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 5, Sun. May13): the Holy Father will celebrate Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Aparecida to inaugurate the Fifth General Conference of the Episcopate of Latin America and the Caribbean.
5/13/07 8:30 AM
5/14/07 12:00 AM Encore
Opening of the Working Session of the General Conference and Departure
Pope Benedict XVI’s apostolic visit to Brazil (Day 5, Sun. May13) - activities include: an address during the opening session of the Latin American conference, and a farewell speech before departing for Rome.
5/13/07 3:00 PM

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Pius XII

Sainthood congregation recommends Pope Pius XII be named venerable by Cindy Wooden | Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Members of the Congregation for Saints' Causes met May 8 to consider the cause of Pope Pius XII and apparently voted to recommend that Pope Benedict XVI formally declare him venerable.

Passionist Father Ciro Benedettini, vice director of the Vatican press office, confirmed the congregation had met, but since the result of the vote still had to be presented to the pope he would not say May 9 what the result was.

Italian newspapers, citing unnamed sources, said the congregation's cardinals and archbishops recommended that Pope Benedict formally recognize that Pope Pius lived the Christian virtues in a heroic manner.

Once the pope issues a decree recognizing heroic virtues, the candidate is referred to as venerable. Before a candidate can be beatified, the pope also must issue a decree recognizing a miracle attributed to the candidate's intercession. A second miracle is needed for canonization.

The newspaper Corriere della Sera reported May 9 that a minority of the congregation members had voted "no," urging Pope Benedict to delay issuing a decree until there is "a more favorable climate," particularly regarding the ongoing controversy over Pope Pius' actions during World War II.

However, a Vatican source told Catholic News Service in Rome May 9 that the congregation's vote was unanimously in favor of issuing the decree.

Jesuit Father Peter Gumpel, the promoter of Pope Pius' cause, was out of town May 9 and unavailable for comment.

Pope Pius led the Catholic Church from 1939 to 1958; immediately before his election, the then-Cardinal Eugenio Pacelli was the Vatican secretary of state.

For years, controversy has raged over whether Pope Pius did and said enough in defense of the Jews and other victims of the Nazis.

The May 8 vote of the congregation members was based on a review of a six-volume, 3,000-page "positio" or position paper prepared by the promoters of Pope Pius' sainthood cause. The report, given to the Vatican in 2004, included sworn testimony from witnesses, historical documents and a review of literature -- both neutral and negative -- pertaining to the Vatican's actions during World War II.

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