23 April 2014

Down the Popebit Hole, Two Bishops in White to Attend Canonizations



Pope(s) Benedict and Francis

Hmmm.

Pope Benedict made a surprise appearance at the February 2014 consistory creating new Cardinals.

Pope Benedict is now reported to be attending the canonizations this Sunday.

What do these two events have in common? Well, for one thing, it is usual for the Pope to attend consistories creating Cardinals and for the Pope to attend ceremonies canonizing Saints. 



Good thing Pope Francis is in attendance, too.


Just one more day in Wonderland.  


Having two living Popes, both in the public eye, both dressed like the Pope, both addressed as His Holiness, both claiming the title of Pope, is super cool.  What harm could it do?

"...Loving the church also means having the courage to make difficult, trying choices, having ever before oneself the good of the church and not one’s own.

Here allow me to return once again to April 19, 2005. The gravity of the decision was precisely in the fact that from that moment on I was committed always and forever by the Lord. Always – he, who assumes the Petrine ministry no longer has any privacy. He belongs always and totally to everyone, to the whole church. His life is, so to speak, totally deprived of the private sphere. I have felt, and I feel even in this very moment, that one receives one’s life precisely when he offers it as a gift. I said before that many people who love the Lord also love the Successor of Saint Peter and are fond of him, that the pope has truly brothers and sisters, sons and daughters all over the world, and that he feels safe in the embrace of their communion, because he no longer belongs to himself, but he belongs to all and all are truly his own.

The “always” is also a “forever” --there is no returning to private life. My decision to forgo the exercise of active ministry, does not revoke this. I do not return to private life, to a life of travel, meetings, receptions, conferences and so on. I do not abandon the cross, but remain in a new way near to the crucified Lord. I no longer wield the power of the office for the government of the church, but in the service of prayer I remain, so to speak, within St. Peter’s bounds. St. Benedict, whose name I bear as pope, shall be a great example in this for me. He showed us the way to a life which, active or passive, belongs wholly to the work of God."


--from the General Audience of Pope Benedict XVI, 27 February 2013.

The Gates of Hell Shall Not Prevail

From the Dogmatic Constitution Pastor Aeternus of Blessed Pope Pius IX:

CHAPTER I.
ON THE INSTITUTION OF THE APOSTOLIC PRIMACY IN BLESSED PETER.

We therefore teach and declare that, according to the testimony of the Gospel, the primacy of jurisdiction over the universal Church of God was immediately and directly promised and given to Blessed Peter the Apostle by Christ the Lord.

For it was to Simon alone, to whom he had already said, "You shall be called Cephas" (John 1:42), that the Lord, after the confession made by him, saying, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God", addressed these solemn words: "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father, who is in heaven. And I say to you, that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound, even in heaven. And whatever you shall release on earth shall be released, even in heaven." (Mt 16:16-19).

And it was upon Simon alone that Jesus, after His Resurrection, bestowed the jurisdiction of Chief Pastor and Ruler over all His fold, by the words: "Feed my lambs. Feed my sheep." (John 21:15-17).

At open variance with this clear doctrine of Holy Scripture, as it has ever been understood by the Catholic Church, are the perverse opinions of those who, while they distort the form of government established by Christ the Lord in His Church, deny that Peter, in his single person, preferably to all the other Apostles, whether taken separately or together, was endowed by Christ with a true and proper primacy of jurisdiction; or of those who assert that the same primacy was not bestowed immediately and directly upon Blessed Peter himself, but upon the Church, and through the Church on Peter as her Minister.

If anyone, therefore, shall say that Blessed Peter the Apostle was not appointed the Prince of all the Apostles and the visible Head of the whole Church Militant; or that the same, directly and immediately, received from the same, Our Lord Jesus Christ, a primacy of honor only, and not of true and proper jurisdiction; let him be anathema.

CHAPTER II.
ON THE PERPETUITY OF THE PRIMACY OF BLESSED PETER
IN THE ROMAN PONTIFFS.

That which the Prince of Shepherds and great Shepherd of the sheep, Jesus Christ our Lord, established in the person of the Blessed Apostle Peter to secure the perpetual welfare and lasting good of the Church, must, by the same institution, necessarily remain unceasingly in the Church; which, being founded upon the Rock, will stand firm to the end of the world. For none can doubt, and it is known to all ages, that the holy and Blessed Peter, the Prince and Chief of the Apostles, the pillar of the faith and foundation of the Catholic Church, received the keys of the kingdom from Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of mankind, and lives, presides, and judges, to this day and always, in his successors the Bishops of the Holy See of Rome, which was founded by him, and consecrated by his blood.

Thus, whosoever succeeds Peter in this Chair, obtains, by the institution of Christ Himself, the Primacy of Peter over the whole Church. Therefore, the disposition of truth remains, and Blessed Peter, persevering in the fortitude of the Rock that he accepted, has not relinquished the governance of the Church that he received.

Therefore, it has always been necessary that each Church -- that is, those who are the faithful everywhere -- should agree with the Roman Church, because of the greater power of the principality that She has received, in order that, all being joined together in the unity of that Seat, from the veneration of which the rights of communion flows to all, might associate closely as members of one Head, in the compact unity of the body.

If then, any should deny that it is by the institution of Christ the Lord and by Divine right, that Blessed Peter should have a perpetual line of successors in the Primacy over the Universal Church, or that the Roman Pontiff' is the successor of Blessed Peter in this primacy; let him be anathema.


U.S. Troops in Poland? Great Idea!

Alternate post title:  War with Russia?  Fatima Chance.

22 April 2014

Cor Ad Cor Loquitur




I can't help it. One more:

We sat down outside the sagging wire fence that shut Mr. Shimerda’s plot off from the rest of the world. The tall red grass had never been cut there. It had died down in winter and come up again in the spring until it was as thick and shrubby as some tropical garden-grass. I found myself telling her everything: why I had decided to study law and to go into the law office of one of my mother’s relatives in New York City; about Gaston Cleric’s death from pneumonia last winter, and the difference it had made in my life. She wanted to know about my friends and my way of living, and my dearest hopes.

“Of course it means you are going away from us for good,” she said with a sigh. “But that don’t mean I’ll lose you. Look at my papa here; he’s been dead all these years, and yet he is more real to me than almost anybody else. He never goes out of my life. I talk to him and consult him all the time. The older I grow, the better I know him and the more I understand him.”

She asked me whether I had learned to like big cities. "I'd always be miserable in a city. I’d die of lonesomeness. I like to be where I know every stack and tree, and where all the ground is friendly. I want to live and die here. Father Kelly says everybody’s put into this world for something, and I know what I’ve got to do. I’m going to see that my little girl has a better chance than ever I had. I’m going to take care of that girl, Jim.”

I told her I knew she would. “Do you know, Ántonia, since I’ve been away, I think of you more often than of any one else in this part of the world. I’d have liked to have you for a sweetheart, or a wife, or my mother or my sister—anything that a woman can be to a man. The idea of you is a part of my mind; you influence my likes and dislikes, all my tastes, hundreds of times when I don’t realize it. You really are a part of me.”

She turned her bright, believing eyes to me, and the tears came up in them slowly. “How can it be like that, when you know so many people, and when I’ve disappointed you so? Ain’t it wonderful, Jim, how much people can mean to each other? I’m so glad we had each other when we were little. I can’t wait till my little girl’s old enough to tell her about all the things we used to do. You’ll always remember me when you think about old times, won’t you? And I guess everybody thinks about old times, even the happiest people.”

As we walked homeward across the fields, the sun dropped and lay like a great golden globe in the low west. While it hung there, the moon rose in the east, as big as a cartwheel, pale silver and streaked with rose color, thin as a bubble or a ghost-moon. For five, perhaps ten minutes, the two luminaries confronted each other across the level land, resting on opposite edges of the world. In that singular light every little tree and shock of wheat, every sunflower stalk and clump of snow-on-the-mountain, drew itself up high and pointed; the very clods and furrows in the fields seemed to stand up sharply. I felt the old pull of the earth, the solemn magic that comes out of those fields at nightfall. I wished I could be a little boy again, and that my way could end there.

We reached the edge of the field, where our ways parted. I took her hands and held them against my breast, feeling once more how strong and warm and good they were, those brown hands, and remembering how many kind things they had done for me. I held them now a long while, over my heart. About us it was growing darker and darker, and I had to look hard to see her face, which I meant always to carry with me; the closest, realest face, under all the shadows of women’s faces, at the very bottom of my memory.

“I’ll come back,” I said earnestly, through the soft, intrusive darkness.

“Perhaps you will”—I felt rather than saw her smile. “But even if you don’t, you’re here, like my father. So I won’t be lonesome.”

As I went back alone over that familiar road, I could almost believe that a boy and girl ran along beside me, as our shadows used to do, laughing and whispering to each other in the grass.


From Willa Sibert Cather: My Ántonia



Genesis 1: 27-30




The wheat harvest was over, and here and there along the horizon I could see black puffs of smoke from the steam thrashing-machines. The old pasture land was now being broken up into wheatfields and cornfields, the red grass was disappearing, and the whole face of the country was changing. There were wooden houses where the old sod dwellings used to be, and little orchards, and big red barns; all this meant happy children, contented women, and men who saw their lives coming to a fortunate issue. The windy springs and the blazing summers, one after another, had enriched and mellowed that flat tableland; all the human effort that had gone into it was coming back in long, sweeping lines of fertility. The changes seemed beautiful and harmonious to me; it was like watching the growth of a great man or of a great idea.

From Willa Sibert Cather: My Ántonia



21 April 2014

Thank You!

Today, Saint Louis Catholic received its 1,500,000th unique visitor since it began on February 15, 2007.  

I am grateful for everyone who visits here.  Hey, I'm surprised anyone visits here.  But there it is.  All of you are in my prayers. 

Thanks again, and may God bless you all.

Things to Ponder, Subito

Just in time to make no difference whatsoever, the media put out two stories today on the mishandling of the Legionaries of Christ/Marcial Maciel scandal specifically, and the priestly abuse of minors scandals generally, serving to tarnish the legacy of John Paul II.  

Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that John Paul II is set to be canonized, along with John XXIII, next Sunday.

The historical, gradual, meticulous process of investigating the lives of the Servants of God whose causes for Sainthood are promoted has been replaced with the processo subito.  Gone is the Devil's Advocate, gone are formerly required miracles.  What remains is the bare exercise of the Petrine office.  Good enough for certainty, but good enough for prudence?

Oh well.  Just as no one is competent to judge a Pope except God, so I will not go anywhere near saying that the two Popes being canonized on Sunday aren't in heaven.  I'll go ahead and assume they are.  So, no letters, please.  And others have written about the many troubling aspects of these causes that are more substantive than procedural.

On to the next battle, and likely the next defeat.

But I will say that many decisions made upon spontaneous demand by an agitated crowd have turned out to be imprudent.

God's Messengers and God's Time

From The Liturgical Year:

"Let us suppose, for a moment, that we had been permitted to arrange the order of these two mysteries. We should have summoned the whole world, kings and people, to go and pay homage at the crib. We should have trumpeted to all nations the miracle of miracles, the resurrection of the Crucified, the victory over death, the restoration of mankind to immortality! But He who is ‘the power and wisdom of God,” Christ Jesus our Lord, has followed a very different plan. When born in Bethlehem He would have for His first worshippers a few simple minded shepherds, whose power to herald the great event was confined to their own village: and yet the birthday of this little Child is now the era of every civilized nation. For the first witnesses of His resurrection, He chose three weak women; and yet, the whole earth is now, at this very moment, celebrating the anniversary of this resurrection. There is in it a mysterious feeling of joy unlike that of any other day throughout the year: no one can resist it, not even the coldest heart. The infidel who scoffs at the believer, knows at least that this is Easter Sunday. Yea, in the very countries where paganism and idolatry are still rife, there are Christians whose voices unite with ours in singing the glorious Alleluia to our risen Jesus. Let us, then, cry out as Moses did, when the Israelites had crossed the Red Sea, and were keeping their first Pasch: ‘Who, O Lord, is like unto Thee, among the strong?'"

20 April 2014

Christus Surrexit!

A very happy and blessed Easter to you all!


Christ's resurrection and manifestation to his disciples. (John 20)

[1] And on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalen cometh early, when it was yet dark, unto the sepulchre; and she saw the stone taken away from the sepulchre. [2] She ran, therefore, and cometh to Simon Peter, and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and saith to them: They have taken away the Lord out of the sepulchre, and we know not where they have laid him. [3] Peter therefore went out, and that other disciple, and they came to the sepulchre. [4] And they both ran together, and that other disciple did outrun Peter, and came first to the sepulchre. [5] And when he stooped down, he saw the linen cloths lying; but yet he went not in.

[6] Then cometh Simon Peter, following him, and went into the sepulchre, and saw the linen cloths lying, [7] And the napkin that had been about his head, not lying with the linen cloths, but apart, wrapped up into one place. [8] Then that other disciple also went in, who came first to the sepulchre: and he saw, and believed. [9] For as yet they knew not the scripture, that he must rise again from the dead. [10] The disciples therefore departed again to their home.

[11] But Mary stood at the sepulchre without, weeping. Now as she was weeping, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulchre, [12] And she saw two angels in white, sitting, one at the head, and one at the feet, where the body of Jesus had been laid. [13] They say to her: Woman, why weepest thou? She saith to them: Because they have taken away my Lord; and I know not where they have laid him. [14] When she had thus said, she turned herself back, and saw Jesus standing; and she knew not that it was Jesus. [15] Jesus saith to her: Woman, why weepest thou? whom seekest thou? She, thinking it was the gardener, saith to him: Sir, if thou hast taken him hence, tell me where thou hast laid him, and I will take him away.

[16] Jesus saith to her: Mary. She turning, saith to him: Rabboni (which is to say, Master). 

13 April 2014

Holy Week


O vos omnes, qui transitis per viam, attendite et videte si est dolor sicut dolar meus.

All of you who pass by the way, wait and see if there is any sorrow like unto my sorrow.


Holy Week Schedule at St. Francis de Sales Oratory:


Monday, April 14 - Holy Monday - 7:30am Confessions; 8am Low Mass
Tuesday, April 15 - Holy Tuesday - 7:30am Confessions; 8am Low Mass; 6pm Confessions; 6:30pm Low Mass
Wednesday, April 16 - Spy Wednesday - 7:30am Confessions; 8am Low Mass; 11:45am Confessions; 12:15pm Low Mass
Thursday, April 17 - Maundy Thursday - 5:30pm Confessions; 6:30pm High Mass  with 
Procession to the Repository with Adoration until Midnight.
Friday, April 18 - Good Friday - 8am Stations of the Cross/Confessions; 2pm Confessions; 3pm Liturgy of the Passion & Death of Our Lord
Saturday, April 19 - Holy Saturday - 8pm Confessions; 9pm Easter Vigil followed by the Blessing of Easter food (bread & eggs)
Sunday, April 20 - Easter Sunday - 8am Low Mass; 10am High Mass


Have a blessed Holy Week.  The blog reenters and completes its Lenten hiatus.  See you all next week, God willing, to celebrate the Resurrection of the Saviour of the World.