Monday, September 30, 2013

Get ready, It's coming! (Painful to watch)

[Hat tip to D.S.]

Blessed Karl of Austria Events in the Northeast -- October 2013

All Masses are Traditional Latin Masses unless otherwise indicated.

Thursday, 17 October, 5:30 PM
Pontifical Mass & Conference, Mary Immaculate of Lourdes Church,
Newton, MA
Friday, 18 October, 6:30 PM
Pontifical Mass, Holy Name of Jesus Church, Providence, RI
Saturday, 19 October, 11:00 AM
Pontifical Mass, Holy Name of Jesus Church, Providence, RI
Sunday, 20 October, 2:00 PM
Pontifical Mass, Dinner & Conference, St. Titus Church,
Aliquippa, PA
Monday, 21 October, 7:30 PM (Feast Day of Blessed Karl of Austria)
Pontifical Mass & Reception, St. Mary Mother of God Church,
Washington, DC
Tuesday, 22 October, 6:00 PM
Mass, Reception & Conference, John Paul II Shrine,
Washington, DC
Wednesday, 23 October, 7:00 PM
Pontifical Mass & Conference, Mater Ecclesiae Church,
Berlin, NJ
Friday, 25 October, 8:00 AM
Pontifical Mass, Carmel of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph,
Elysburg, PA
Saturday, 26 October, 5:30 PM
Novus Ordo (in Portuguese), Our Lady of Fatima Church,
Elizabeth, NJ
Sunday, 27 October, 11:00 AM
Pontifical Mass & Conference, St. Anthony of Padua Oratory,
West Orange, NJ
Monday, 28 October, 6:00 PM
Pontifical Mass & Conference, Church of the Holy Innocents,
Manhattan, NY

Celebrant of Pontifical Masses:
His Excellency, Don Teodoro de Faria
Bishop Emeritus of Funchal, Madeira Islands, Portugal

Conference Speaker:
Ricardo Dumont dos Santos
Portugal Delegate of the Emperor Karl League of Prayers

These Masses and conferences were arranged and coordinated by the following Traditional Knights of Columbus councils: Regina Coeli Council 423, Manhattan, NY
Potomac Council 433, Washington, DC
Woodlawn Council 2161, Aliquippa, PA
Agnus Dei Council 12361, Manhattan, NY
Mater Ecclesiae Council 12833, Berlin, NJ

Grateful acknowledgement to Syversen Touring for arranging air travel.

Additional support provided by:
The Paulus Institute for the Propagation of Sacred Liturgy
The Pittsburgh Latin Mass Community, Inc. (PLMC)

For additional information on Bl. Karl, please visit the Emperor Karl League of Prayers website.

Background info on speakers:

His Excellency, Don Teodoro de Faria
Bishop Emeritus of Funchal, Madeira Island, Portugal, author of a new book about Blessed Karl. As Bishop of the diocese in which Blessed Karl died in 1922, Bishop de Faria has long been active in his cause for sainthood, and it was he who formally presented to the Holy Father the petition to beatify Emperor Karl at the beatification ceremony in Saint Peter’s Square on 3 October 2004. A native of Madeira, Bishop de Faria was ordained in 1956 at the age of 26, consecrated bishop of Funchal in 1982, and since his retirement in 2007, has been working on his book about Blessed Karl, which he will discuss during his remarks.

Ricardo Dumont dos Santos
Portugal Delegate of the Emperor Karl League of Prayers. Mr. Dumont dos Santos is the honorary consul of the Federal Republic of Germany on the Portuguese island of Madeira. His family's connection to Blessed Karl encompasses three generations. His father, Dr. Alfredo Dumont Machado dos Santos, was leader of the Emperor Karl Prayer League in Portugal until his death in 1989. His paternal grandfather was one of the doctors called for consultation during the final illness of Emperor Karl, and it was he who signed his death certificate.

[Hat tip to A.T.W.]

First two V-II popes to be canonized in April

Sam Jones and Lizzy Davies,"Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII to become saints" (The Guardian, September 30, 2013): "Pope Francis announces that the canonisation of his two predecessors will take place in April 2014." "Santo Subito!" ("Saint now!") -- the cries of the multitudes in St. Peter's Square immediately following the death of John Paul II still echo in our ears.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

"Planned self-destruction"?

My apologies to any of you who happen to be Vortex-haters and Voris-despisers, but even if you think these ideas are sufficiently over the edge to tar them as "conspiracy theories," don't the issues they raise at least warrant some discussion?

Reflection on a prayer card

Prayer cards are interesting. Some simply reproduce traditional prayers with pictures of traditional saints on the other side. Others introduce prayers that look like ad-libbed innovations or the sort Protestants might produce in their extemporaneous reveries. Sometimes one even finds misspellings, such as the beautiful card with a consecration to the Blessed Mother I have memorized, which spelled the word "altar" as "alter" (God bless the author)!

More often than not, I prefer the traditional prayers over the more recent attempts to "improve" upon them. The prayers I find most off-putting are those that sound like bidding-prayers that could be offered at a United Nations prayer chapel. It's hard to tell who is being invoked or to what end, although something vaguely well-intentioned is usually evident. As they say, the road to Hell is paved with good intentions.

One recent prayer card of the kind one received in the mail when he gets placed on various Catholic mailing lists, is one that caught my attention by its ruthless realism. It hit the ground running, so to speak, with the following invocation directed to Our Lady:
Mother, now that the need is at its greatest and the powers of darkness seem to have free reign, we come to you with childlike trust and implore your powerful aid...."
Not bad. The time is ripe for realism. Especially today, on this Feast of the Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel, it is eminently fitting to remember that Catholics were born, as Pope Leo XIII declared, for combat.

At the bottom of all warfare and all battles, in the final analysis, lies only one conflict: the war begun in the heavens between St. Michael the Archangel and Lucifer. As our priest told us in his homily this morning, it is instructive to remember that the name "Michael" means "Who is like God?" The question was hurled at Lucifer, of course, who aspired to be like God, and thereby got himself cast down from Heaven by St. Michael and fittingly supplanted by a humble peasant girl, know known as Queen of Angels and Mother of God!

Even Pope Paul VI came to realize -- perhaps too late -- that things were not quite as rosy as most had thought following the best council ever:
"The Church finds herself in an hour of anxiety, a disturbed period of self-criticism, or what would even better be called self-demolition [auto-destruction]. It is an interior upheaval, acute and complicated, which nobody expected after the Council. It is almost as if the Church were attacking itself. We looked forward to a flowering, a serene expansion of conceptions, which matured in the great sessions of the council. But ... one must notice above all the sorrowful aspect. It is as if the Church were destroying herself."
Related: "Self-Destruction 09-11" (Vortex)

Extraordinary community news

"I will go in unto the Altar of God
To God, Who giveth joy to my youth"

Tridentine Community News (September 22, 2013):
St. Mary, Rockwood Church Restoration

A reader recently brought to our attention an impressive renovation of a local church, St. Mary in Rockwood, Michigan, located between Monroe and Wyandotte. Some of the best news in our region isn’t well-publicized: it turns out that the restoration took place back in 2009. This historic church gained a glistening sanctuary floor and restored High Altar, and a Communion Rail was (re)installed. A Latin inscription over the sanctuary completes the picture. Our reader reported that Masses [in the Ordinary Form] are now celebrated there at the High Altar, ad oriéntem; there is no freestanding altar. As yet no Masses in the Extraordinary Form are being offered, but such an ideal setting practically begs for one to be arranged.

Restoration of churches in a classic style is becoming increasingly commonplace. St. Mary joins the similar but smaller scale traditional re-ordering of St. Stephen Church in New Boston, Michigan and Ann Arbor’s Old St. Patrick, making it the third church in our part of the world to have reinstalled traditional fixtures over the past five years. [Photo credits: The first photo was taken by Lance Luce. The second photo was taken from “The Beautiful Church Thread” at The latter thread is filled with page after page of impressive traditional Catholic architecture...well worth a browse.]

Carmelite Monastery Restoration

Another restoration that is gaining recognition in the press is famed church architect Duncan Stroik’s re-do of the Carmelite Monastery in Traverse City, Michigan. As the adjacent before-and-after photographs indicate, a traditional sanctuary has been constructed, with an elevated stone altar, a Communion Rail, and Latin inscriptions on a wooden archway reminiscent of a rood screen.

It may not surprise our readers to learn that since the renovation, Holy Mass in the Extraordinary Form has begun to be celebrated in this chapel on occasion. [Photos from The New Liturgical Movement]

Tridentine Masses This Coming Week
  • Mon. 09/23 7:00 PM: Low Mass at St. Josaphat (St. Linus, Pope & Martyr)
  • Tue. 09/24 7:00 PM: High Requiem Mass at Assumption-Windsor (Daily Mass for the Dead) – Choir will sing Mozart’s Requiem Mass
  • Fri. 09/27 7:00 PM: High Mass at St. Alphonsus, Dearborn (Ss. Cosmas & Damian, Martyrs) – Young adults age 18-35 are invited to a dinner after Mass sponsored by Juventútem Michigan
  • Sat. 09/28 4:00 PM: High Mass at St. Joseph, Detroit (Dedication of St. Michael the Archangel) – Mass fulfills Sunday obligation; the Mass of St. Michael is the Mass of the Sunday. The Mass is offered as part of the parish Oktoberfest Festival taking place Saturday and Sunday.
[Comments? Please e-mail Previous columns are available at This edition of Tridentine Community News, with minor editions, is from the St. Josaphat (Detroit) and Assumption (Windsor) bulletin inserts for September 22, 2013. Hat tip to A.B., author of the column.]

St. Alphonsus, Dearborn to Hold First Tridentine Mass

"I will go in unto the Altar of God
To God, Who giveth joy to my youth"

Tridentine Community News (September 15, 2013):

Another local church will be joining the ever-growing roster of sites which have hosted the Tridentine Mass: On Friday, September 27 at 7:00 PM, Dearborn’s historic St. Alphonsus Church will host its first Holy Mass in the Extraordinary Form. The celebrant will be Msgr. Ronald Browne. The Rosary will be prayed before Mass at 6:30 PM.

Young adults age 18-35 are invited to a dinner after Mass sponsored by Juventútem Michigan. More information is available on the Facebook event page.

[Photo from the Archdiocese of Detroit Film Services collection at]

Upcoming Special Masses at Historic Churches

The pace of special High Masses is picking up, with four special Masses scheduled at historic Detroit area churches over the next several weeks:
  • St. Albertus Church: Sunday, September 22 at 12:00

  • Assumption Church, Windsor: Tuesday, September 24 at 7:00 PM – The St. Benedict Tridentine Choir will sing Mozart’s Requiem Mass and the Lacrimósa from Mozart’s Dies Iræ at a High Mass for the Dead. This special music program was made possible through the generosity of Windsor Tridentine Mass Community co-founder John Foot.

  • St. Joseph Church: Saturday, September 28 at 4:00 PM (Mass satisfies Sunday obligation) – The Oktoberfest Parish Festival will be held that Saturday and Sunday.

  • St. Hyacinth Church: Sunday, October 13 at 1:00 PM. Benediction of the Most Blessed Sacrament will follow Mass. St. Hyacinth will also offer a First Saturday Low Mass the previous Saturday, October 6 at 9:00 AM.
Ohio Bus Tour and Tridentine Mass

On Monday, October 7, the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, there will be a bus tour to Ohio, visiting Toledo’s Our Lady Queen of the Most Holy Rosary Cathedral and Bellevue’s Sorrowful Mother Shrine (pictured), where a Tridentine High Mass will be offered at 3:00 PM. The cost is $45, which includes lunch. For more information or to register for the tour, call (248) 250-6005 or visit

Reminder: Rosary Indulgence

It is important for Catholics to be aware of the numerous opportunities that Holy Mother Church provides to gain Partial and Plenary Indulgences, which remit either some or all (respectively) of the temporal punishment due for sin. Of recent note, it has been encouraging to see the publicity given to the Plenary Indulgences that may be earned by visiting designated pilgrimage sites during the Year of Faith.

One of the easiest ways to gain a Plenary Indulgence is to pray the Holy Rosary in a church. The conditions to gain this and any Plenary Indulgence are Confession within 20 days, reception of Holy Communion, prayer for the Holy Father’s intentions, and freedom from attachment to sin. To help the maximum number of the faithful take advantage of this great grace, the Rosary is prayed publicly before Sunday Mass at St. Josaphat, St. Albertus, and Assumption-Windsor; after the First Saturday Masses at St. Hyacinth; and before most Last Friday Masses organized by Juventútem Michigan. If you are interested in leading the Rosary before Masses on these or other days, including weekday Masses, please see one of the volunteers at the entrance to the church.
[Comments? Please e-mail Previous columns are available at This edition of Tridentine Community News, with minor editions, is from the St. Josaphat (Detroit) and Assumption (Windsor) bulletin inserts for September 15, 2013. Hat tip to A.B., author of the column.]

Assignment: write three sentences - one with a possessive verb, one with an action verb, and finally an exlamatory sentence

One of my sons recently sent the following email to family members:
I have sworn on my grandfather’s grave never to send out cute things my kids say, but I’m going to make an exception. Augustine [his son] was asked in grammar yesterday to write three sentences: one with a possessive verb, one with an action verb, and finally an exclamatory sentence:
  1. I have a flamethrower.
  2. I torched my grammar books.
  3. “Wow! I have no more grammar books!”
Sorry, I couldn't help sharing ...

The Hollow Crown: Shakespeare's History Plays

Son Christopher informs me that there are still things worth watching on television, if one has a television set. He writes: "Proof that there is still stuff worth watching on television ... this is actually very good -- with Patrick Stewart, Jeremy Irons, and that guy that played 'Loki' in the movie Thor." He is referring, of course to The Hollow Crown, a lavish new series of filmed adaptations of four of Shakespeare’s most gripping history plays; Richard II, Henry IV, Part 1, Henry IV, Part 2 and Henry V on THIRTEEN’s GREAT PERFORMANCES beginning Friday, September 20 at 9 p.m. (Check local listings.)

[Hat tip to C.B.]

Saturday, September 28, 2013

"How a children's cartoon destroyed Japanese agriculture"

An article by that title was just sent to me by Christopher Blosser. It relates how a popular anime TV program in Japan called Araiguma Rasukaru, about a kid and his adorable raccoon sidekick (based on the popular Disney movie Rascal), led to a disastrous surge of imports of North American racoons as intended pets in Japan, which, in turn, led to one of the worst invasive species events in Japan, with estimated agricultural damage of approximately US$300,000 per year on the island of Hokkaido alone.

However, Japanese interest in the lowly raccoon antedates the anime by upwards of a century. Sapporo's famed shopping arcade Tanuki Koji, named for the animal and with a shrine honoring it in the middle of the arcade, is commonly known as Sapporo's oldest shopping area, dating from the late 1800s. Some shops there have been in business for 100 years. It's an amazing place, burgeoning wish all sorts of shops, from clothing stores to the nationally famous "Sapporo Ramen" and "Jingisukan" shops.

How amusing.

[Hat tip to C.B.]

Verrecchio: Would Pius X have considered Pope Francis a modernist?

Louie Verrecchio, who once shared his testimony to God's providence with Ralph Martin during a session of the popular EWTN program "The Choices We Face," has just posted a piece bearing the audacious title "Is Pope Francis a Modernist?" (Harvesting the Fruit of Vatican II, September 25, 2013).

Well, "audacious" doesn't even begin to describe the piece, actually. While the author raises some very serious questions, he explodes from the starting gate of his post like Jon Stewart's opening blast on his half-comic The Daily Show with the following:
I have little doubt that the title to this piece pretty much guarantees that the majority of Cotton Candy Catholics won’t even bother to read it. You see, for those who prefer to dwell in that fairy tale version of Catholicland wherein nary a crisis endures, the very question alone is like a serial killer making a cameo appearance in a child’s bedtime story.
And, with that, he's off and running, with a list of recent utterances of the Holy Father, which he holds up against the measuring rod of the imposing Engyclical, Pascendi, by Pius X.

[Hat tip to L.S.]

The End of Christendom: How must we then live?

A courier was waiting outside my door when I answered the knock this morning. He handed me a letter containing the following lengthy and meaty ruminations (slightly edited) from our correspondent on retainer, Guy Noir, Private Eye:
So why does this ["Secretary of State and married priests," RC, Sept. 12, 2013] depress me? It's not Celibacy: It's Celibacy and Everything Else!

Let' see...

The Vatican Secretary of State thinks priests should marry. Because that will help the drastically ebbing tide of vocations. The answer is to upturn old policy and down the requirements.

Benedict XVI is tired, and can no longer stomach his job, so he thinks the answer is upturning old policy and allowing Popes to retire.

George Weigel finds old school legalism off-putting, so historic modies of expression should be upended and "Friendship with Jesus" as the answer.

Francis thinks clerical trappings are a turn-off to moderns, so the answer is to overturn old policy and be the plain brown wrapper pontiff.

This Pope thinks pagans feel unwelcome in Church, so we should simply baptize their babies.

Christopher Schonborn thinks we have disenfranchised gays and lesbians, so the answer is to do a reverse and admire their relationships and install them on parish boards.

The head of the CDF thinks traditionalists are embarrassing, so they should be upbraided and abandoned.

Hans von Balthasar and Robert Barron are offered as replacements for the now deserted Garrigou-Lagrange and Gerald Vann. Adrien Von Seyr is the new Sister Lucia. GK Chesterton is to be sainted, and on the internet he and Benedict XVI are wishfully dubbed mystics by their articula champions.

... Post-evangelical Derek Webb has a new album out called "I Was Wrong, I'm Sorry, and I Love You." Sounds like the current message of Modern Catholicism. A Church that does nothing but change seems to have very little base unchanging truth it is called to defend. Oh... enter the essential theological thrust of Modernism. Enter Bishop Jerferts Schori and ABC Rowan WIlliams. We seem that much closer to That Glittering Unity. The new Church Basilica can be in what the Holy Father might call The Malvinas.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Jeremiad against hypocrisy and denial over ecclesial collapse

Earlier this month St. Michael's Media released a two-part episode called "Catholic Establishment Media 09-04."

Part I involves an interview with Jay McNally, former editor of The Michigan Catholic, detailing what happened when he wanted to address "uncomfortable" questions about homosexuality within the Archdiocese of Detroit well before the Boston Globe blew the lid off the Catholic sex-scandals across the United States.

Part II involves an animated exposé‎ by Michael Voris of the "Catholic Establishment Media's" concerted effort to keep a lid on the problems surrounding the wholesale collapse of the Church, particularly featuring previously unaired backstories on various attempts to marginalize and silence the apostolate of St. Michael's Media.

This second part is of notable interest for several reasons. First, it details the development of Michael Voris' career and the watershed moment of his alma mater, Notre Dame, honoring President Obama with an honorary doctorate. Second, it reveals very clearly what animates Voris' work: what some might call his Johnny-Come-Lately discovery seven years ago that the problems in the Church stem, not from external attacks or scandalous behavior of nominally-Catholic politicians like Pelosi receiving Communion (these are merely symptomatic), but from those within the Catholic establishment themselves who appear to have a vested interest in keeping the lid on the real problems within the Church.

The whole piece is well worth listening to, but about 35 minutes into the second episode, the Jeremiad gains full force in a veritable tyrade against the hypocrisy and public denial among Catholic leaders regarding the utter collapse of the Church and the distortion of truth and loss of clarity in her message.

I developed a keen sense of smell early in life, even as a Protestant, for preaching or lecturing or writing about religious subjects with an air of unreality -- "God talk" that floats two feet above reality and contradiction like the dialogues of the Laputians in Gulliver's Travels. Do you know what I mean? This is what I get all too often while travelling when I visit other parishes and listen to priests going on and on in their homilies about everything except what really matters.

I remember once taking a visiting Presbyterian minister to Mass at a previous parish. He was a career missionary in Japan and well acquainted with what constitutes a good sermon. I was therefore particularly sensitive to what the priest might say in his homily that Sunday. At the beginning of the homily, a congregant's cell phone rang, and the priest spend the rest of his ten minutes of "homily time" addressing the issue of cell phones in Mass and never got around to proclaiming the Gospel, let alone expositing the text of the lectionary for the day.

And the amazing thing is that this is not at all surprising anymore.

In a 2002 article entitled "The Kasper-Ratzinger Debate & The State of the Church" (New Oxford Review, April 2002), I wrote:
With few exceptions, the results of Catholic catechesis over the past forty years has been dismal. We Catholics, both laity and clergy, are all too often abysmally ignorant of our own Tradition. For more than two generations now, we have been robbed of the fullness of Catholicism, which is our birthright. With a few thankful exceptions, our collective acquaintance with Scripture is piecemeal, our knowledge of Tradition is pathetic, our hymns are embarrassing, our religious art is ugly, our churches look like U.N. meditation chapels, our ethics are slipshod, and our aesthetic and spiritual sensibilities are so far from being sublime that they almost look ridiculous.
In light of this, and many other examples we could offer, it may be concluded that what Michael Voris is saying is not really new. What is new is the fact that he is willing to address these issues which so few people seem willing to talk about.

Even when the facts are abysmally depressing, it can feel like a breath of fresh air to hear someone publicly acknowledging them for what they are, like the kid who cried out "The emperor has no clothes!" -- especially when everyone around him seems intent on steering all conversation away from what is plainly before our eyes. At least then we hear someone describing the same reality that we see around us and know we're not simply going insane in our perceptions.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

"Cardinal Kasper plotting an anti-Ratzinger progressive Papacy"?

That is what Christopher Gillibrand suggested in his article by that title in Cathcon (March 7, 2013). Here is one provacative extract:
The former assistant to Hans Küng [Kasper] was removed in 1999 by John Paul II as Bishop of the Diocese of Rottenburg-Stuttgart and transported to Rome, where he was until 2010 President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity. (Cathcon- what a pair Cardinal Lehmann, research assistant to Karl Rahner and Cardinal Kasper, assistant to Küng- although Cardinal Kasper has proved effective in assimilating himself to conservatives around the journal, Communio. This was founded by among others Joseph Ratzinger as an antidote to the ultra- progressive journal Concilium, supported by Küng, among other radicals). The promotion was part of a smooth reconstruction of the German episcopate by repression of the progressive influence. While as a "minister" of the Holy See Kasper moderated his attitudes, he has not abandoned them. Within the Roman Curia, he was theologically the real opponent of Benedict XVI. Since the resignation announcement, it was not difficult for the Cardinal to advance as the most important representative of the progressive camp among the Conclave participants. This is a direction that is numerically no longer great among the Papal electors , but they are looking for allies. (emphasis added)

[Hat tip to A.G.]

10th anniversary of death of Michael Davies (R.I.P)

Fr. Z writes:

Michael Davies was a real gentleman, a dedicated Catholic and lover of the Church, and a zealous advocate of reverent liturgical worship.

He went to God on 25 September 2004.

A reader reminded me:
"Of your charity, please pray for the soul of Michael Davies:

"Author, teacher, lay theologian,
President of Una Voce International,
Loyal son of Wales,
Husband and father,
Faithful son of Holy Church and a great defender and champion of the Faith.
Today is his Ninth Anniversary.

"I have been profoundly touched by the news of the death of Michael Davies. I had the good fortune to meet him several times and I found him as a man of deep faith and ready to embrace suffering. Ever since the Council he put all his energy into the service of the Faith and left us important publications especially about the Sacred Liturgy. Even though he suffered from the Church in many ways in his time, he always truly remained a man of the Church. He knew that the Lord founded His Church on the rock of St Peter and that the Faith can find its fullness and maturity only in union with the successor of St Peter. Therefore we can be confident that the Lord opened wide for him the gates of heaven. We commend his soul to the Lord’s mercy."

- Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger

(Translated from the original German)
9 November 2004
How he – in his earthly life – would have loved Summorum Pontificum.

Archbp. Vigneron defends statement on Communion and supporters of same-sex marriage

Patrick B. Craine, "Detroit Archbishop defends his stance that gay ‘marriage’ supporters should not receive Communion" (LifeSiteNews, September 24, 2013):
DETROIT, Sept. 24, 2013 ( - Despite strong criticism and a public rebuke from another bishop, Detroit’s Archbishop Allen Vigneron has reaffirmed his insistence that Catholics who support same-sex “marriage” should not receive Holy Communion.
God bless the good Archbishop!

[Hat tip to Fr. Z.]


A word of thanks to those of you who have been praying for me and my family during our leave of absence. Your prayers have been amply answered, and, as the previous couple of posts indicate, we are back again.

Pertinaciously yours,

The Christian Genocide

"Is there any other name for what is happening? Yes, the time has come to use the G word: what is happening is Genocide, the small Christian minorities in several Muslim countries are being targeted in order to attain their disappearance from where they live and have lived for centuries." Read more here:
"When I hear that so many Christians in the world are suffering, am I indifferent or is it like one of my family is suffering? When I think or hear that so many Christians are persecuted and even give their lives for their faith, does it touch my heart or not at all? ... I will ask you a question, but do not answer in a loud voice, but in your hearts: how many of you pray for the Christians who are being persecuted? How many of you? Each one of you answer in your heart. 'Am I praying for that brother, for that sister, who is facing hardship for professing and defending his faith?'"

General Audience
September 25, 2013

Chilling personal account of anti-traditionalist Catholic academic censorship

Dr. John Lamont, "Traditionalism and academic censorship - a personal experience and a very grave episode" (Rorate Caeli, September 25, 2013). What is all the more disturbing is that this anti-traditionalist academic censorship comes, not from the "usual suspects" of the Catholic left wing, but from the "conservative" editors of the respected journal, Nova et Vetera, Matthew Levering and Reinhard Huetter (both Catholic converts and well-respected "conservatives") who had initially accepted the eventually-censored piece for publication and attested to its academic excellence and had no creditable ground for suppressing the piece except the traditionalist leanings of the author.

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Leave of absence

I will be blogging infrequently, or not at all, for the next two weeks. Please be assured that any comments entered in the comment boxes will eventually be posted. In the meantime, say a Hail Mary for us during our absence. Kind regards, Pertinacious Papist

Photo Album Posted for Cathedral Mass

"I will go in unto the Altar of God
To God, Who giveth joy to my youth"

Tridentine Community News (September 8, 2013):
A beautiful album of photos taken by Aaron Harburg at the August 30 Tridentine Mass at Detroit’s Blessed Sacrament Cathedral has been posted on the Juventútem Michigan Facebook page. Two examples from the album give an eyewitness perspective on this history-making event:

Summórum Pontíficum Sixth Anniversary Mass

This Saturday, September 14 marks the sixth anniversary of the effective date of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s 2007 Motu Proprio, Summórum Pontíficum, which freed any priest to celebrate the Tridentine Mass on his own initiative. This was arguably one of the greatest achievements of our Holy Father Emeritus’ pontificate. Not only has there been a dramatic increase in regular and special celebrations of the Extraordinary Form worldwide, but in many locales the Ordinary Form of Holy Mass is now celebrated with additional solemnity, including traditional practices such as kneeling for Holy Communion, and use of Gregorian Chant and sacred polyphony.

One of the local parishes most influenced by Summórum Pontíficum is Ann Arbor’s Old St. Patrick. They have reinstalled – and use – a Communion Rail. They now celebrate most Holy Masses, even in the Ordinary Form, ad oriéntem at the High Altar. They have implemented an impressive sacred music program and have become a center for traditional devotions and parish activities. Credit for these initiatives goes to pastor Fr. Gerald Gawronski, former music director Mara Wehrung and current music director Sipkje Pesnichak, and ubiquitous Tridentine organizer Paul Schultz.

It is therefore most fitting that Old St. Patrick will hold an Anniversary Mass for Summórum Pontíficum on the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Saturday, September 14 at 8:30 AM. Details are on a Facebook event page.

It would be an act of charity for the readers of this column to offer a prayer of thanksgiving to God for this great development in the life of the Church in our era, as well as a prayer for the welfare of Pope Emeritus Benedict.

Tridentine Masses This Coming Week
  • Mon. 09/09 7:00 PM: Low Mass at St. Josaphat (St. Peter Claver, Confessor)
  • Tue. 09/10 7:00 PM: Low Mass at Assumption-Windsor (St. Nicholas of Tolentino, Confessor)
  • Sun. 09/15 2:00 PM: High Mass at Assumption-Windsor (Seventeenth Sunday After Pentecost) – Guest celebrant: Fr. James Roche, Episcopal Vicar of Windsor. Fr. Roche will make the formal proclamation of establishment of the St. Benedict Tridentine Catholic Community. A reception will follow Mass.
[Comments? Please e-mail Previous columns are available at This edition of Tridentine Community News, with minor editions, is from the St. Josaphat (Detroit) and Assumption (Windsor) bulletin inserts for September 8, 2013. Hat tip to A.B., author of the column.]

Friday, September 06, 2013

Perils of Prosperity

John Teevan, "10 Perils of Prosperity" (Acton Institute PowerBlog, September 5, 2013) - Excerpt:
So Why is Sustained Prosperity a Peril? Nearly everyone on earth prefers a life free from poverty and from the need to focus on survival. Call it liberty or call it comfort, everyone prefers this life. Now nearly 2b people enjoy that level of living thanks to the growth of economic freedom. But there are problems.
  1. People think that nothing can go permanently wrong.
    Money cures everything and there is plenty of it and always will be. Period.
  2. People think that all moral issues are irrelevant.
    Ask Miley Cyrus ... the latest casualty who is also a Disney role model: see #9.
  3. People think that they can afford anything and suddenly want everything.
    So the richest people on earth fuel their lives with even more debt financed stuff.
  4. People are dissatisfied with life and find it boring. They are also ungrateful.
    Mental illness, substance abuse, and suicide are ever increasing.
  5. People think that all who lived before their era were deficient or foolish.
    In olden days people had to work hard, be moral, and watch out…what idiots!
  6. People think that it is not necessary to learn, work, or stick to it to have a comfortable life.
    If I get a job I like, fine, otherwise I’ll just move back home with my folks. Big deal.
  7. Governments believe the economy can be taxed to pay for any government program.
    If the rich just paid their fair share we’d all have comfortable incomes; spread it around.
  8. People forget what a life of discomfort was like and are ‘spoiled’.
    OK, I broke the blender, but the jerks at Walmart wouldn’t take it back.
  9. People adopt a new value system that is narcissistic and worships the self.
    How can I go to work today? It’s my birthday. All drama–all the time, for many.
  10. Governments believe that the welfare state is the only compassionate use of such prosperity.
    Even a single dollar of reduction of social security will leave grandma out in the cold.
We must be very careful of prosperity. It has a way of deluding us into thinking that we can afford anything and that we can absorb any shock. For seven decades this has been true. But now we have changed our thinking and our planning and our savings as we ignore the possibility of real economic disaster: Beware.
It's heartening to see this come from the Acton Institute, which has sometimes seemed to me all-too-cozy with laissez-faire Austrial Libertarian theory of the kind found in Murray Rothbard and Ludwig von Mises. I should wonder if any their disciples of could utter the prayer that St. Louis de Montfort linked to the Rosary's Third Joyful Mystery of the Blessed Nativity: "We ask of Thee through this mystery and Thy Blessed Mother, for a detachment from the things of the world, a love of poverty and a love of the poor."

[Hat tip to Chris Garton-Zavesky]

Is NFP "contraception lite"?

More in depth: "The truth about natural family planning" (Mic'D UP)

Prayer and fasting for Syria

Save Syria offers some statistics worth noting.

This morning, I received this email reminding me about "Syria Saturday: Fasting Ideas for the Pope's Day of Penance" (Taylor Marshall, September 6, 2013). "Syria Saturday. Pope Francis has asked all Catholics and all Christians and other people of good will to dedicate Saturday (Sept 7, 2013) as a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Syria." The Holy Father did not give specific instructions about this, but Dr. Marshall offers some suggestions, classifying them as Hard, Medium, Easy. Read more >>

Thursday, September 05, 2013

"If you meddle with the Mass, the Papacy will collapse"

An editorial from Radicati nella Fede, (via Adfero at Rorate Caeli, September 2, 2013):
A large part of so-called “conservative” Catholicism is committing a very serious error: in order to save what remains of the Catholic presence in the world, to render the mission of the Church stronger in secularized society, and faced with the moral weariness of many ecclesial sectors, it is making an effort to increase Catholic pride, by focusing totally on the Pope. Moreover, it is handling this attention on the Pope in exactly the same way as the newspapers, television and internet sites, who are extolling the humanity of the Pontiff, underlining with pride the popular interest in his person. They are behaving in the exact same way as the world devoid of faith or not concerned with faith, with their descriptions of oceanic gatherings around the Vicar of Christ, of his impressive gestures and the controversial choices that he seems to be making.

No, it is not from the Pope that we need to start in order to save our Catholic life: in fact, not from the Pope at all, but from the Holy Mass, from the Holy Eucharist.

So that we can explain ourselves, we turn to one of the most important spiritual authors of the of the last century, Dom Chautard, Abbot of Sept-Fons.

"Homosexualists destroy another Christian business"

"Todd's American Dispatch: Christian bakery closes after LGBT threats, protests" (Fox News, September 3, 2013). All in the name of "tolerance" and "non-judgmentalism" and opposition to "discrimination" and "bigotry," of course. (Remember what I've always said about "totalitarian democracy"? It's well on the way.)

Nouvelle theologies, the Pope, & Liberation theology

This morning we received this: Fr. Z, "Pope Francis and Liberation Theology" (WDTPRS, September 5, 2013), which Fr. Z warns may lead some readers to have "a spittle-flecked nutty and start dashing around screaming that the Pope is a Marxist" (I'm not making this up) -- sent so us from our exasperated undercover investigator, Guy Noir, who added this:
"Unless my historical theology is off, it is only in the last 50 years that theologies/theologians are condemned as unCatholic, and later rehabilitated. Criticisms that Catholicism is now more often defined by identification with the person of the Pope than with the office Tradition seem correct.

"Of course, unless someone was already known as quite Conservative, would you expect anything else from the Jesuit Latin hemisphere, honestly?

"Makes one feel like CDF verdicts are rather trifles. What did the Pope say, don't let those slaps on the wrists derail you, or some such?"
[Hat tip to JM]

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

"Santo Subito -- American Author Calls for His Own Sainthood, Now"

Kevin Wandra, "Santo Subito -- American Author Calls for His Own Sainthood, Now" (CNW, Sept. 4, 2013):
ATLANTA -- Widely known for his wit and humor as the host of "The Catholic Guy" on SiriusXM Radio, Lino Rulli believes that, like Pope John Paul II, his own Cause for Canonization should be addressed by Pope Francis immediately.

If Rulli has his way, he will be canonized on Divine Mercy Sunday, which, allegedly, is when Blessed Pope John Paul II and Pope John XXIII will be canonized in Rome. (The official announcement will be Sept. 30.) Rulli provides evidence for his Cause (and yours) in his latest book, SAINT: Why I Should Be Canonized Right Way, released this week from Servant Books....

And people accuse Latin Massers of being a bit weird?

Consider Adrienne von Speyr ...

Maureen Mullarkey, "Idolatry of Devout Ideas" (First Things, September 3, 2013) - excerpts:
The name of Hans Urs von Balthasar has become a kind of a code word among Catholics. Like the password to a speakeasy, it signals membership in a confidential circle on sequestered ground. Nonmembers have to tread carefully. Signs to “Keep Off the Grass” are everywhere. The lawn is beautifully kept.

At the risk of tripping over those staked warnings, I have to admit a high degree of nonplussment over the writings of Adrienne von Speyr and Balthasar’s drive to promote them. I spent the summer with Balthasar’s First Glance at Adrienne von Speyr, her Book of All Saints, her Confession, and The World of Prayer, each with an introduction by Balthasar. A curious phenomenon, von Speyr. Curiouser still is the aura of mimicry—Simone Weil speeds to mind—and nineteenth century spiritualism that accompanies her story. Equally nonplussing is the hagiographic obscurantism that marks Balthasar’s presentation of his protégée and alter ego....

... The impression of something insalubrious, askew, hovers over what is proffered as mystical insight. It is impossible to close Book of All Saints—which includes Balthasar’s verbal prompts to Adrienne in her visionary state—without gratitude that the Church does not require assent to private visions. The sensus fidelium is granted latitude for good reason. Credulity does faith no service. And skepticism, too, can be a gift of the Spirit. An astringent grace.

A hyper-suggestible female susceptible to the ascendent will of an authoritative male is the classic stuff of the literature of parapsychology. In this instance, it is also an invitation to consider the power of theology to seduce and the ways of an eminent theologian to mesmerize. At the same time, it beckons a glance at the corresponding fascination of a theologian with a living mirror of—and prod to—his own transformative ambitions.
[Hat tip to JM]

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

"Seminarian Class Assignment"

From our undercover agent we keep on retainer in a dark northeaster city that knows how to keep its secrets, Guy Noir, Private Eye, comes this (slightly edited) missive:
Seminarian Class Assignment:

Read the following link: "Tampa church evicts Scout troop over decisions on gays" (Tampa Tribune, August 29, 2013).

Discussion Question:

Can any Catholic Leaders be described as 'conservative' in the sense of the word that would make one think they would support the congregation under fire in this article? How does this relate to the Question of Religious Liberty?
[Hat tip to JM]

"The Liberal Protestant Future of Catholic Dissent"

by Tom Piatak, "The Liberal Protestant Future of Catholic Dissent" (Crisis, August 13, 2013):
One of the many memorable scenes in David Lean’s Doctor Zhivago features Zhivago’s family fleeing the ugliness and brutality of Moscow after the Bolshevik Revolution for the tranquility of the family’s country estate in Varykino. Upon reaching the estate after an arduous journey, Zhivago’s father-in-law, Alexander Gromeko, finds the main house boarded up, with a notice affixed to the door. After reading the notice, he cannot contain his exasperation: “A body, styling itself the Yuriatin Committee of Revolutionary Justice, has expropriated my house. In the name of the people. Very well. I’m one of the people, too!”

I know how Gromeko felt. I recently attended a lecture at the Cleveland City Club by Helmut Schuller, a dissident Austrian priest who just finished touring the United States to promote his plan to dramatically refashion the Catholic Church so that it is more in line with Schuller’s opinions. Schuller claims to be acting in the name of “the People of God,” a phrase he repeated many times in Cleveland. As a baptized Catholic, I’m one of the People of God, too. But I no more gave Schuller authority to speak in my name than Gromeko gave the Bolsheviks authority to steal his house. And despite fawning coverage from such venues as The New York Times, NPR, Reuters, and the National Catholic Reporter, most of Schuller’s speeches were attended by crowds of no more than a few hundred, or less than the number who attend Mass each Sunday at a typical suburban parish. Read more >>
[Hat tip to JM[

Related: "Austrian 'Called to Disobedience' founder to be hosted by Fr. Bechard at Saints Simon and Jude in Metro Detroit" (Musings, June 18, 2013).

"I never realized how cool wars could be until Obama started them!"

[Hat tip to Lisa Graas]

Monday, September 02, 2013

Duelling musical traditions

As Fr. Z says: You decide, discuss, all of you who have the "courage to enter the song"!

[Hat tip to GM, via Fr. Z]

Sunday, September 01, 2013

Blessed Sacrament Cathedral Mass Report

Tridentine Community News (September 1, 2013):

History was made this past Friday, August 30, as the first Tridentine Mass in over 40 years was offered at Detroit’s Blessed Sacrament Cathedral. Auxiliary Bishop Donald Hanchon celebrated his first Mass in the Extraordinary Form, assisted by Juventútem Michigan Clerical Guide Fr. Lee Acervo. His Excellency remarked afterwards at how pleasantly surprised he was to see so many young people interested in the historic liturgy.

Assisting in choir were several well-known local celebrants of the Extraordinary Form, including Fr. Peter Hrytsyk, who provided parts of the vestment set used for the Mass, Fr. Mark Borkowski, Msgr. Ronald Browne, and Fr. David Bechill. Music was provided by an impressive group of singers gathered for this Mass, under the direction of Joe Balistreri [who took the above photo]. Special thanks to Diane Begin for the many days spent creating the altar frontal [cloth] that lent a traditional appearance to the modern freestanding altar.

Sacred Heart Major Seminary to Offer Training on the Extraordinary Form

On the heels of the Cathedral Mass comes word that Detroit’s Sacred Heart Seminary will host a training symposium on the Extraordinary Form October 10-13, to be provided by priests from the Society of St. John Cantius in Chicago. Third and fourth year Theology seminarians and priests of the Archdiocese of Detroit are invited to participate. We congratulate Sacred Heart Seminary for taking this first, important step in exposing the Classic Liturgy to interested future and current clergy.

For those who cannot spare the time or money for a multi-day symposium, priest and deacon training by members of the Windsor Latin Mass Community is available at no charge to all clergy of the Archdiocese of Detroit, the Diocese of London, and the Diocese of Lansing. Bishop Hanchon, for example, availed himself of this local resource to prepare for this past Friday’s Mass. Interested clergy can e-mail the below address for details.

Reminder: First Saturday Masses Debut This Saturday

We invite our readers to attend St. Hyacinth Church’s new First Saturday Tridentine Low Masses. Five First Saturday Masses have been scheduled, beginning with this Saturday, September 7 at 9:00 AM. Confessions will be available before Mass, and the Rosary will be prayed. The celebrant for the first Mass will be Fr. David Bechill.

Episcopal Vicar Fr. James Roche to Celebrate Mass on September 15

On Sunday, September 15, Episcopal Vicar of Windsor Fr. James Roche will be the guest celebrant of the 2:00 PM Tridentine Mass at Assumption Church. Fr. Roche will make the formal proclamation of establishment of the St. Benedict Tridentine Catholic Community on behalf of Bishop Fabbro. A reception will follow Mass in the social hall under Rosary Chapel. As this column has many times made mention, Fr. Roche has been a great friend to the Latin Mass over the years, assisting quietly behind the scenes on matters major and minor.

The Tridentine Mass: An Egalitarian Liturgy

In our ongoing effort to set the record straight on misconceptions regarding the Tridentine Mass, today we present a quote from Pope Emeritus Benedict / then-Cardinal Ratzinger’s Spirit of the Liturgy:
“The turning of the priest toward the people has turned the community into a self-enclosed circle. In its outward form, it no longer opens out on what lies ahead and above, but is locked into itself. The common turning toward the East was not a ‘celebration toward the wall’; it did not mean that the priest ‘had his back to the people’: the priest himself was not regarded as so important. For just as the congregation in the synagogue looked together toward Jerusalem, so in the Christian Liturgy the congregation looked together ‘toward the Lord’.”
Our Holy Father Emeritus makes an interesting point which suggests a possible promotional angle for the Classic Liturgy: In this age when democratic and egalitarian ideals are trumpeted, one could talk about the Traditional Latin Mass as a form of worship of Almighty God in which the prayers and orientation of priest and congregation are uniquely in unison. All face God at the altar; everyone’s prayer, and not the celebrant per se, is the focus.

Tridentine Masses This Coming Week
  • Mon. 09/02 7:00 PM: Low Mass at St. Josaphat (St. Stephen of Hungary, King & Confessor)
  • Tue. 09/03 7:00 PM: Low Mass at Assumption-Windsor (St. Pius X, Pope & Confessor)
  • Wed. 09/04 12:00 Noon: High Mass at Shrine of Our Lady of Consolation, Carey, Ohio (Votive Mass of Our Lady of Consolation) – For bus tour registration, call (248) 250-6005
  • Fri. 09/06 7:00 PM: Low Mass at St. Josaphat (Votive Mass of the Sacred Heart of Jesus) – First Friday
  • Sat. 09/07 9:00 AM: Low Mass at St. Hyacinth, Detroit (Immaculate Heart of Mary) – First Saturday Mass with Confessions and Devotions
[Comments? Please e-mail Previous columns are available at This edition of Tridentine Community News, with minor editions, is from the St. Josaphat (Detroit) and Assumption (Windsor) bulletin inserts for September 1, 2013. Hat tip to A.B., author of the column.]

Book review: Michael Gillespie's The Theological Origins of Modernity

My son, Christopher, just sent me an email today from New York where he lives, in which he relates (I'm quoting by permission):
I finished [Michael Allen] Gillespie's The Theological Origins of Modernitylast night. It was overall a very enjoyable read.

He turns the conventional reading of the Enlightenment (as reason overcoming religion) on its head by explaining how the humanism of Petrarch, the free-will debate between Luther and Erasmus, the scientific forays of Francis Bacon, the epistemological debate between Descarte and Hobbes, were all motivated by an underlying wrestling with the questions posed by nominalism, which dismantled the rational God-and-universe of scholasticism and introduced (by the Franciscans) a fideistic God-of-pure-will born of their concern that anything less than such would jeopardize God's omnipotence -- subsequent intellectual history is in Gillespie's reading a grappling with the questions of free will and divine determinism; Protestantism involved at its core fidiestic, denying of free will will in order to preserve God's absolute power. However, this in turn culminated in an ambivalence about salvation. If God simply wills whom to save, human action then has no real merit or significance (Luther's "sin boldly"). Gillespie's chapter on the Erasmus-Luther was among the most interesting in bringing this out. Also fascinating was his discussion of Descartes and Hobbes -- the latter usually depicted as an atheist and his philosophy as chiefly political -- as sincerely religious, and revealing the underlying metaphysical concerns behind his thought. And so Gillespie says, even in modern times, we are bequeathed with a similar wrestling with modernity's political ambitions to increasing freedom and the inability to reconcile this with science's inherent determinist worldview. Likewise, in the post-9/11/ confrontation with Islam (which makes a brief appearance at the end) we are again confronted with the pure will and absolutism of Islam which sees the West's assertion of "individual autonomy" / free will as a challenge to God's omnipotence, for whom our only response is obedience.
From his blog review, Against the Grain, Christopher quotes the fundamental thesis of Gillespie from the book:
...the apparent rejection or disappearance of religion and theology in fact conceals the continuing relevance of theological issues and commitments for the modern age. Viewed from this perspective, the process of secularization or disenchantment that has come to be seen as identical with modernity was in fact something different than it seemed, not the crushing victory of reason over infamy, to use Voltaire’s famous term, not the long drawn out death of God that Nietzsche proclaimed, and not the evermore distant withdrawal of the deus absconditus Heidegger points to, but the gradual transference of divine attributes to human beings (an infinite human will), the natural world (universal mechanical causality), social forces (the general will, the hidden hand), and history (the idea of progress, dialectical development, the cunning of reason)....

That the deemphasis, disappearance, and death of God should bring about a change in our understanding of man and nature is hardly surprising. Modernity ... originates out of a series of attempts to construct a coherent metaphysic specialis on a nominalist foundation, to reconstitute something like the comprehensive summalogical account of scholastic realism. The successful completion of this project was rendered problematic by the real ontological differences between an infinite (and radically omnipotent) God and his finite creation (including both man and nature).
Christopher cites Lee Trepanier's concise summary of the intellectual path Gillespie takes to demonstrate his thesis (University Bookman), delving into the thought of Petrarch and the significance of the debates between Luther and Erasmus, Descartes and Hobbes as they grappled with the theologic implications of nominalism.

Apart from finding the last chapter "a bit rushed and inconclusive" (the post-9/11 spectre of Islam makes a cursory appearance at the end, but isn't adequately elaborated), he calls Gillespie's revisionist intellectual history of modernity and "immensely informative" and "provocative challenge to the conventional, secular reading of history." Sounds interesting. Read more on Christopher's blog >>

Dr. Taylor Marshall: FREE e-book on Mary Mediatrix of all Graces & tips on praying the Family Rosary

Another FREE e-book by Dr. Taylor Marshall HERE (the pdf is HERE).

It's only 16 pages, but covers: (1) tips for praying the Family Rosary, (2) the theology of Marian Mediation, and (3) the theology of Consecration to Mary.

Here is an excerpt of the Twelve Tips for Praying the Family Rosary Daily, which offers an example of the practical dimension of the book:
  1. Pray using alternation (The father prays first half of Our Father and everyone else prays second half - same goes for Hail Mary and Glory be).
  2. Pray the Rosary after dinner but right before bed - this means homework needs to be finished before dinner. Homework kills the Rosary if you don't stay on top of it. You'll also need to say goodbye to watching prime time television - since this is the ideal window of praying together as a family.
  3. Pray the Holy Rosary always at the same place at the exact same time. Devotions become strong - even invincible - by constant custom and habit.
  4. Pray the Rosary in a special room and set up a little altar with a Bible on it, candles, a statue or image, holy water, or a relic.
  5. Dim the lights and light the candles when you begin. If you let the little ones light the candles - they will love it. Kids love fire. Make this a "special time" different from other times. We even burn incense on our domestic altar on feast days. (You can do this easily by placing a little metal screen over a votive candle and then by placing a few grains of incense on the screen. It's fast and easy. This way you don't have use charcoal.)
  6. Maybe begin with a hymn or Bible reading to slow things down and set the tone.
  7. The father sets the example. I recommend that the father kneel for the whole Rosary. This communicates importance and solemnity to the Rosary. Children attach importance to what dad does, e.g. mowing lawn, going to work, driving the "dad car," etc.
  8. Make it a rule that the child who prays all the responses and volunteers to lead a mystery (10 beads) gets to stay up 10 minutes more than everyone that night - at our house this means you get to watch baseball or have a book read to you. This may be the most important tip. Kids under 7 or 8 need this sort of incentive. If you tell a 6 year old, pray the Rosary so that you receive grace and sanctity - they don't get it. If you say, pray the Rosary so that you can stay up and read a book with me - they'll hit their knees and pray like angels.
  9. The one who gets to stay up also gets to blow out the candle at the end. This gives another incentive to pray the prayers - especially for the younger ones. For some reason, blowing out the candle is a really big deal to younger children. (Kids love fire!!!). You'd be amazed how a four year old will attempt to stay still if he can only place a grain of incense on a flame or blow out a candle. (Did I mention that kids love fire?)
  10. End with invoking everyone's patron saint (your children's names, confirmation names, and other patrons). E.g. "Saint Thomas: pray for us. Saint Jude: pray for us. Saint Anne: pray for us." Always finish with St Joseph and then Holy Mary Mother of God. Then say "Sacred Heart of Jesus: have mercy on us," three times. If you're shooting for the plenary indulgence, make sure to pray an Our Father and Hail Mary for the Pope.
  11. If family Rosary is new, start with one decade for a week. Then go to three for a week. Then go to five decades on the third week. Then don't ever stop.
  12. After the daily Rosary is established in your home, have each child announce a mystery and pray the whole decade. This gives them confidence in praying and makes it natural. Plus, they'll learn to memorize all the mysteries of the Holy Rosary - which means they will have memorized the biblical account of Christ's life, death, and glory! This is why the Rosary is called "the Bible on beads."
Dr. Marshall adds: "If you do this, then you'll be producing saints for the future. If you're an older reader of CTales and your children are grown up - please pray for all the younger parents so that they can persevere in this. It's not easy at first - and we newer parents need all the help we can get!"

Some good thoughts here. Hat tip to Dr. Taylor.

Catholic descendant of Charles Darwin

From Ed West (Catholic Herald, UK, June 13, 2013) via Laura Keynes , "I’m a Direct Descendant of Darwin ... and a Catholic" (Strange Notions):
"Are you related to the economist?” people sometimes ask when they see my surname. I explain that, yes, John Maynard Keynes is my great-great-uncle—his brother Geoffrey married Margaret Darwin, my great-grandmother. “So you’re related to Darwin too?” Yes, he’s my great-great-great grandfather. Eyes might fall on the cross around my neck: “And you’re a Christian?” Yes, a Catholic. “How does a Darwin end up Catholic?”

The question genuinely seems to puzzle people. After all, Darwin ushered in a new era of doubt with his theory of evolution, and the Bloomsbury Group, of which Keynes was a part, influenced modern attitudes to feminism and sexuality. How can I be a product of this culture, and yet Catholic? The implication is that simple exposure to my ancestors’ life work should have shaken me out of my backwards error.

I’m a product of what Noel Annan called “the intellectual aristocracy”, the web of kinship uniting British intellectuals over the 18th to 20th centuries....
[Hat tip to Dr. E. Echeverria]