Showing posts from January, 2008

Archbishop Chaput: "We expect our employees to respect Catholic teaching..."

Carl Olson of Ignatius Insight Scoop has a nice synopsis of the ongoing story of Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver and the controversy over a proposed bill that would attack religious identity in social services. Here is just a portion of the story: Archbishop Charles Chaput called House Bill 1080 an "attack on religious identity" in his weekly column appearing in last week's Denver Catholic Register. He subsequently answered questions about the bill in an e-mail exchange with the Rocky Mountain News: Q: The most straightforward interpretation of your column suggests that you will shut down Catholic Charities if this bill - or any bill - passes which restricts your ability to hire or fire based on Catholic religious standards. Is that a correct reading of what you will do? Chaput: No. Catholic Charities will continue its core mission to the poor with or without public funds. If the government wants to carry the burden it currently asks religious-affiliated group

Loyal Opposition? No, Just Plain Old Dissent

Fr. John Trigilio (who often appears on EWTN) has a wonderful blog called " The Black Biretta ." He has a new post on dissent in the Church . Here is an excerpt: ...One hundred and nine years ago, on January 22, 1899, Pope Leo XIII issued his encyclical Testem benevolentiae nostrae which condemned the heresy of Americanism . This pernicious theological error proposed that there are no absolute moral principles or immutable doctrines. It held that truth was relative and that the personal conscience is the sole and supreme arbiter of ethical behavior. Americanism denied the necessity of cultivating a well formed conscience, tested and guided by the Natural Moral Law and the Divine Positive Law of God Himself. Coach Majerus should get his money back from the Jesuits at Marquette who taught him. They did not teach him the truth. Morality is not subjective but objective. Imagine if a basketball player tells the coach he disagrees with him and will follow his conscience instead.

Aggie Catholics-FAQs about Lent

Marcel LeJeune of the Catholic Ministry at Texas A and M has a neat little FAQ posted about Lent . This was linked from Ignatius Insight Scoop and I thought it too neat to pass up: LENT FAQ What is Lent? Lent is a time when the Catholic Church collectively enters into preparation for the celebration of Easter. Lent originally developed as a forty-day retreat, preparing converts to be baptized at the Easter Vigil. Lent is a season of conversion. Conversion is the process of turning away from sin and turning to God. Lent starts with Ash Wednesday (this excludes Sundays, which are not part of the 40 days) and ends on Holy Thursday, the first day of the Triduum, the three holy days before Easter. So why aren't Sundays part of Lent? This is because Sundays are always a day of celebration of Christ's passion and Resurrection, so we celebrate on these days. Does this mean I can "cheat" on Sundays? Since Sundays are not part of the penitential season, you do not

Franciscan University at Steubenville approves TLM

Fr. Z. reports on a breaking event which he learned by email : Dear Friends, I have great news for all of you: the University today approved the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Liturgy for the campus. Their statement is as follows: The Traditional Latin Mass In response to those students who have demonstrated their commitment to the extraordinary form of the Latin rite Mass, Franciscan University will celebrate its first Traditional Latin Mass i n Christ the King Chapel on Sunday, March 30. Those interested in being trained as altar servers or assisting in other ways should contact Rob Palladino, director of Chapel Ministries (Ext. 6506). The time of the Mass will be announced at a later date, once Chapel Ministries has determined the length of time needed to temporarily transform the Chapel into the proper environment for the Traditional Latin Mass and how that impacts the rest of our Sunday Mass schedule. As we take the next step in this unfolding process, the Franciscan Fri

REVIEW: Baronius Press 1962 hand missal

Fr. Z. has written a review of the hand missal from Baronius Press on his blog . I have to confess that I use the newest version called the "Summorum Pontificum" edition (the entire document is reprinted in the Missal). The missal has an imprimatur and forward by Bishop Bruskewitz of the Diocese of Lincoln, NE and is referred to by the F.S.S.P. as "their" missal. It is a beautiful book and I will allow Fr. Z. to explain why he likes it so. Please see the review for further features of this text . Note that Angelus Press also has a beautiful missal which may be the chief competition to this one.

Why SLU will likely back the Coach, not the Archbishop

Insight Scoop has a fascinating take on the showdown between basketball coach, Rick Majerus, the Jesuits and the Archbishop of Saint Louis, Archbishop Burke centering on Saint Louis University. Here is just a snip taken from the American Spectator and posted on Insight Scoop : George Neumayr, editor of Catholic World Report , writes this in a special report (Jan. 28, 2008) for American Spectator : In 2003, Jesuit St. Louis University (SLU) received an $8 million tax abatement to start building a sports arena. This annoyed the Masonic Temple Association, whose property abuts SLU. Arguing that a religious school should not receive government monies, the Association filed a federal lawsuit to block the abatement. The case was ultimately dismissed, but not before exposing the utter shamelessness of Jesuit officials at the schools. To fend off the suit, they told a Missouri appellate court that SLU is "independent of the Catholic Chu

Ecclesiastical Latin. Resources for Learning and Enrichment

Shawn Tribe of The New Liturgical Movement found this gem and posted a link to the website . The site offers Latin Dictionaries, books on Liturgical Latin and other gems. The menu to the right has links to learning Latin, the Vulgate, and other resources of interest. Please visit this site. One can even subscribe to a Latin Nerd Warriors Newsletter . How can you turn down THAT invitation! See one below!

TLM returns to Huntsville, Alabama

Gerald Augustinus of "The Cafeteria is Closed" reports that the TLM has returned to Huntsville, AL : Una Voce Northern Alabama has more photos and information . The church was packed with some 400 people, many of them young parents with their children. Upcoming: SUNDAY, FEB. 3 LOW MASS 2 PM Blessed Sacrament, BIRMINGHAM, AL SUNDAY, FEB. 10 LOW MASS 3 PM St. Mary of the Visitation, HUNTSVILLE, AL SUNDAY, FEB. 17 LOW MASS 2 PM Blessed Sacrament, BIRMINGHAM, AL SUNDAY, FEB. 24 LOW MASS 3 PM St. Mary of the Visitation, HUNTSVILLE, AL AUTHORIZED BY BISHOP BAKER Schola forming in March (for more information contact On a sad, sad note , he reports on a "Pop Circus Mass" from France. Click this link only if you dare... The photos are quite upsetting.

The Roman Curia Wakes Up and Strikes Three Blows

Sandro Magister writes a marvelous article in www.chiesa on the changes in the Roman Curia and how those are assisting Pope Benedict XVI. Here are just a few snippets from this excellent review. First: 1. In "L'Osservatore Romano" on January 5, cardinal Cláudio Hummes, prefect of the congregation for the clergy, announced that he had sent to bishops, pastors, religious superiors, and seminary rectors all over the world a letter to ask that in every diocese "cenacles" of perpetual Eucharistic adoration be established, with the aim of "sanctifying" priests through prayer. Among the motivations for the initiative, Hummes explicitly referred to the sexual "sins" committed on the part of a "minimal" but still significant part of the clergy: "We ask all to do Eucharistic adoration in order to make reparation before God for the grave injury that has been done, and to recover the dignity of the victims. Yes, we wanted to think of

Archd. of Washington, DC: over complicating Summorum Pontificum?

Fr. Zuhlsdorf received a copy of a letter sent to priests in the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C . The letter was sent in PDF format but he reproduces one segment on his blog: In the near future, Archbishop Wuerl will appoint a Coordinator of the Extraordinary Form to serve as chaiman of the special committee. Because the archbishop has the responsibility to foster a common discipline in the celebration of the sacrament within the archdiocese (C. 392), his permission must be received prior to making any permanent commitments by a parish for the public celebration of the Extraordinary Form on a regular basis. This also is in accord with Article 5 of Summorum Pontificum which state that public or regularly scheduled Masses be offered under the guidance of the bishop in accordance with canon 392, avoiding discord and favoring the unity of the whole Church. To request this permission pastors first must seek the review and counsel of the Coordinator of the Extraordinary Form, who will

WDTPRS: Sexagesima Sunday

Fr. Z. informs us that today is Sexagesima Sunday , the "sixtieth" day before Easter (in a broad and not absolutely numerical sense). In the traditional Roman calendar this Sunday is called Sexagesima, Latin for the “Sixtieth” day before Easter. This number is more symbolic than arithmetical. Last week was the first of these pre-Lenten Sundays, Septuagesima or “Seventieth. The pre-Lenten Sundays prepare us for the discipline of Lent, which once was far stricter. Purple is worn rather than the green of the season after Epiphany and there is a Tract instead of an Alleluia. The prayers and readings for the pre-Lenten Sundays were compiled by St. Gregory the Great (+604). In the Novus Ordo of Paul VI there is no more pre-Lent, which was a real loss. COLLECT : Deus, qui conspicis, quia ex nulla nostra actione confidimus: concede propitius; ut, contra adversa omnia, Doctoris gentium protectione muniamur. I don’t think this prayer in any form survived to live in the Novus O

Bishop Aquila's Address on Absolutes in Life Issues

Zenit reprints the address of Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo at Loyola College in Baltimore, entitled "The Sanctity of Human Life from Conception to Natural Death" given on November, 15th. The presentation was part of the Loyola Alive Seamless Garment Series . ...As Catholics we believe in the dignity of human life. In the book of Genesis we hear how the Creator has created the human being in his image and likeness, male and female, he created them (Genesis 1:26ff.). God blessed the first couple and gave them a command to be fruitful and multiply. They are given the power to share in God's creation through their sexual intimacy. Life is a gift freely bestowed by the Creator, a good that is to be received. Of all creatures that God has created, only human beings share in his image and likeness and are given the ability to know, receive and return the love of God. The dignity of human life is determined by God and thus is always to be protected. The Catechism of the Cathol

National Shrine Grotto of Lourdes, Mt. Saint Mary's, Emmitsburg, MD

The National Shrine Grotto of Lourdes is one of the oldest American replicas of the revered French shrine, dating to about two decades after the apparitions at Lourdes (1874), although the site had already been in use for more than seventy years as a place of prayer and devotion. The Grotto was proclaimed a Public Oratory on December 8, 1965 by His Eminence Lawrence Cardinal Shehan, Archbishop of Baltimore. A place of pastoral beauty and spiritual inspiration, the Grotto draws hundreds of thousands of religious pilgrims and tourists annually. CLICK to enlarge...

Does Coach Majerus really think he can out play Abp. Burke?

You probably have heard the story on the news by now: an orthodox Archbishop has publicly questioned a Division I basketball coach at a Roman Catholic University within his Archdiocese about the coach's pro-abortion comments while the coach protests all the while to be "Catholic." What are to we make of this as the talking heads on ESPN and other outlets tell the good Archbishop to "mind his own business?" Fortunately, a superb canonist , Edward N. Peters, writes a blog on Canon Law called, In Light of the Law, and he has weighed in on the case : I'm not making this up. Jesuit-run St. Louis University's basketball coach Rick Majerus (yes, a basketball coach) is telling St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Burke (yes, the canonist archbishop ), to mind his own business regarding Majerus ' outspoken support for (get ready for it) abortion and experimentation on embryonic humans ! If it weren't that expressing support for such deeply offensive conduct i

“Seven Days of Musical Heaven”

Shawn Tribe of the New Liturgical Movement reminds everyone that the Annual Sacred Music Colloquium of is filling up quickly . The event this year is listed as: “Seven Days of Musical Heaven” June 16-22, 2008 (Monday noon through Sunday morning) Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois Sponsored by the Church Music Association of America The website lists all of these as part of the event: Extensive training in Gregorian chant and the Renaissance choral tradition under a world-class faculty; You can choose between three chant fundamentals classes, four advanced chant classes, and three large polyphonic choirs; Choral experience with large choir singing sacred music of the masters such as Palestrina, Isaac, Victoria, Byrd, Tallis, Josquin, and many others; Daily liturgies with careful attention to officially prescribed musical settings; Residency in new, apartment-style dormitories or optional hotels; Breakfast, lunch, and dinner from a varied menu ; Training in vocal pro

How to implement Summorum Pontificum

Jeff Culbreath of the Stony Creek Digest posts a story on the TLM at Ave Maria University in Naples, FL . It was reported that the TLM would return to Ave Maria under Fr. Fessio. Now Bishop Dewane of Venice, FL has released this statement of further clarification: “Due to the demand for the celebration of the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, both from Catholics residents in Ave Maria Town as well as from students, faculty, and staff at Ave Maria University, and in accordance with ‘Summorum Pontificum’, it is fitting that a Sunday Mass be celebrated on campus in the Extraordinary Form. In keeping with the same manifest desire, it would seem opportune that the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite be celebrated on a daily basis at the University, and at a convenient time. Further, it is noted that, in accordance with ‘Summorum Pontificum’, unscheduled Masses can also be celebrated by priests on campus , in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite.” As Jeff said in commenting o


FSSP transform a modernistic free-standing altar into a very beautiful High Altar. The church that this took place in is in France and is now operated by the Fraternity of St. Peter. The complete time for this "Altar-ation" was just about 15 minutes! The music is Jeanne Barbey's "Te Deum."

Faith: Latin Mass for Those on the Go

The Signal, News from Santa Clarita Valley, California, carries a story by Tammy Marashlian on how two priests restored a treasured recording of a High Mass : When Father Dominic Radecki, priest of Queen of Angels Church in Newhall, and his twin brother, Father Francisco Radecki, priest of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Wayne, Michigan, realized that their original live recording of a traditional Latin Mass was deteriorating, they knew something had to be done. “Because it was so beautiful, we wanted to preserve it,” Francisco Radecki said. “It would have been lost.” Fortunately for them, the two happen to have an extensive background in sound engineering, something they picked up through school programs when they were young. Already having most of the necessary equipment, the two set to work examining, editing and re-recording the six miles of reels. The result of their efforts is the compact disc “High Mass Recorded Live,” which they believe embodies the meaning of Latin Mass and puts

Mother Teresa Goes to Washington

To mark a somber anniversary, that of the decision of Roe v. Wade by the U.S. Supreme Court, it is appropriate to recall the remarks made by Mother Teresa at the National Prayer Breakfast in 1994 . (“Mother Teresa Goes to Washington.” National Prayer Breakfast , Washington, D.C; February 5, 1994). The words are as poignant today as they were then and will be always... On the last day, Jesus will say to those on His right hand, “Come, enter the Kingdom. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was sick and you visited me.” Then Jesus will turn to those on His left hand and say, “Depart from me because I was hungry and you did not feed me, I was thirsty and you did not give me to drink, I was sick and you did not visit me.” These will ask Him, “When did we see You hungry, or thirsty or sick and did not come to Your help?” And Jesus will answer them, “Whatever you neglected to do unto one of these least of these, you neglected to do unto M

The Cautionary End of the Spirit of Vatican II

Dr. Jeff Mirus comments on an article in Commonweal on clerical morale written by a priest from the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, Fr. Paul Stanosz . Mirus' article appears on the site, Catholic Culture . The essay responding to Fr. Stanosz' observations hits hard and raises deep issues. For example, Mirus says this: What are we to make of an article which, in the process of concluding that there is nothing to be done, displays such an animus against precisely those spiritual solutions which have ever been at the heart of a vibrant Catholicism? What does it all mean? That’s the question which makes the article so fascinating, the question to which it is critical to understand the answer. For what it all means is that the Milwaukee mindset is so far gone in its sins that the only way open is despair. The so-called spirit of Vatican II which has wielded such a terrible power for the past forty years was nothing more than a euphoric baptism of secular utopianism. After such a lon


Before entering "superstar" status in the religious blogosphere, Fr. Zuhlsdorf wrote (and still does) a wonderful column for The Wanderer called "What Does the Prayer Really Say?" As he says today in his Sunday blog post : Some of you who are more recent readers of this blog may not know that for years I have written a column in The Wanderer about liturgical translations. I have compared the original Latin texts of prayers with the official ICEL versions and picked them both apart. The column has had great success, and has wound up being rather influential, I am happy to say. More importantly it has helped many people understand that our prayers for Mass have a profound content, nay rather, a divine content: the true content of our prayers in Mass is the divine Person, Jesus the High Priest, the Head of the Church lifting prayers to the Father. For the first seven years of the WDTPRS column I looked at the prayers of Mass with the Novus Ordo. This year I a

Ad Orientem

Father Martin Fox of "Bonfire of the Vanities" has posted an interesting article called "Ad Orientem ." Fr. Fox suggests that the intent of the Holy Father in using the ad orientem posture in his Mass at the Sistine Chapel was to bring this subject into the fore. Here is a snippet: Now, you will most often hear this posture referred to as, "the priest with his back to the people." Well, that's accurate to some degree but unhelpful. How often do we refer to us having our backs to each other? Even in "churches in the round," a good number of people sit with their backs to people behind them; yet no one seems to think this is somehow a slight from one to the other; and the reason is because we are concerned with what we're turned toward --i.e., toward the Lord. So why is it that we all understand the need for everyone in church to be turned toward the Lord...except for the one leading our worship, offering the Sacrifice for us, in our nam

Benedict XVI leads the faithful in ‘looking together at the Lord’

Shawn Tribe of the New Liturgical Movement posts a story from the Catholic Herald by Dr. Alcuin Reid on the Papal Mass at the Sistine Chapel. Here is a portion of this essay: "What matters is looking together at the Lord." These words, written eight years ago by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, explain a subtle but decisive liturgical reform being enacted through the personal example of Pope Benedict XVI. The latest and perhaps most striking step in this reform took place on the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord when, as has become customary, the Pope celebrated Mass in the Sistine Chapel and baptised newborn infants. As papal ceremonial goes, this is not usually a grand liturgical occasion: the Mass is in the vernacular and is largely said, not sung. Yet it was precisely there – in perhaps as close to a parish setting as papal ceremonies often get – that the Holy Father chose to make a significant liturgical adjustment. Instead of celebrating the liturgy of the Eucharist at a te

Chabanel Psalm Project

Once again, Fr. Z. has found a gem! The Chabanel Psalm Project is a complete collection of Psalm responses set for organ for use at Mass . As the site states: The Chabanel Psalms (generally speaking) are modal and based on Gregorian chant. They were harmonized using a very eloquent system of Gregorian modal harmony. However, many of them need not be accompanied by the organ. Then, too, many of the responses (and, actually, even the verses themselves) can be sung in harmony, but this is only recommended for groups that read music very well. The Psalms are presented as PDF files that are free for download . Please visit the site and browse. There is much to discover! And, don't forget to inform your Pastor about this resource!

A breath of fresh air is wafting through St Peter’s

James MacMillan has an Op-Ed piece in the The Catholic Herald (U.K.) that mentions religious blogging and Fr. Z. in particular. If you want to read Fr. Z.'s comments on the article, check out his site . I would like to post a couple of portions of MacMillan's piece that make for good points for a discussion: One particular American blogger, Fr John Zuhlsdorf, has recently hailed what he calls “the return of triumphalism”. Ever since Vatican II this has been a taboo word in the Church, but he sees it as a good thing. Is this yet more evidence that we are moving into a new, more confident era for the modern Church? That Catholics are more and more prepared to stand up for their identity and their core values? That liberal secularists and liberal Christians have failed in bullying orthodox Catholics into submission? Is it really time to become assertive about the faith in the public square? To be honest, there is nothing particularly serious, scholarly or analytical about Fr

Top 10 neglected Vatican stories of 2007

Lest I forget this news story, Fr. Z., reports on the return of the TLM to Ave Maria University...finally ! The Mass will be said by Father Joseph Fessio. John Allen of National Catholic Reporter summarizes what he feels were the ten most neglected stories concerning the Vatican in 2007 . Here is a snippet: 4) A pope of hope : Despite his erstwhile reputation as an Augustinian pessimist, Benedict XVI struck two major blows for hope in 2007. In April, the International Theological Commission, acting on his recommendation, suggested that limbo (a destination for unbaptized babies in the afterlife) could be set aside in favor of hope for their salvation. In December, Benedict issued his encyclical Spe Salvi (“Saved by Hope”), offering a positive spin on eschatology. The Last Judgment, for example, is not a threat of damnation, but a promise that justice will eventually prevail in a world in which evil too often goes unchecked. 3) Redefining dialogue with Islam :

The Forum: Ad orientem: the single most important reform

Father Z. on WDTPRS says that Phil Lawler "nails it" with this article on Catholic World News . Here is a bit to let you see for yourself: If you read about the ceremony in the secular media, you almost certainly read that the Pope had "his back to the people." While that description is not inaccurate, it is reflects a distinct perspective. You could just as well observe that the Holy Father and the other worshipers in the Sistine Chapel were "facing in the same direction." When the priest-celebrant faces the altar, he looks like what he is: the leader of a community at prayer. Everyone is facing the same way; everyone is involved in the same action. When the priest faces the people, on the other hand, he appears to be a performer, with the people as his audience. The liturgical changes of Vatican II were intended to encourage more active participation by the laity in the Eucharistic liturgy. But think of any other situation in which one man faces a grou

"A Necessary Conversation" About Ideologized Liturgy

Fr. Rob Johansen , in response to an interesting post by Amy Wellborn , writes a very thoughtful commentary on issues relating to the TLM on his blog, Thrown Back . Fr. speaks about a photo of a priest celebrating Mass " ad orientem ," in which Amy asked for respondents to comment. He writes, in part: Amy asked people for their reactions to the photo, and the reactions were themselves thought-provoking and revealing. What they seem to reveal is something I have noticed before in many of the negative reactions to Pope Benedict's Motu Proprio and to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass, otherwise known as the " Tridentine " rite. What is apparent to me is that many of the objections are ideological rather than theological or spiritual. Here are a list of some of the words and phrases used in the negative reactions to the photo, or other objections and complaints about Summorum Pontificum and/or the Extraordinary Form that have appeared in the media since la