Tuesday, July 31, 2007

On being computer-less

Well, obviously I'm not, really. Right now I'm using my friend and business partner's computer...but it's not the same!!!

I came back today to find my beloved Mac phttt...gone, inoperable, dead.

'Course I'm hoping against hope the good people at Apple will be able to fix it at some point...maybe even tomorrow. Afternoon. Or night. Or the next day. And of course there are worse things that could happen. ("Think of the starving children in all those places staving children live!" I can hear my mom right now.)

The thing is, I didn't realize how much I depended on my computer. Pitiful, isn't it? You'd think I'd lost something important and I haven't! I mean, jeepers, the electricity still functions and I've got food...what is the matter with me?

Well, for one thing, I'm a bit worried about work tomorrow. This computer is fine (evidently) for blogging, but as much as I love you, there are clients that must be serviced.

I'm wondering if I still know how to write long-hand. You know, like with a pen and a blank piece of paper.

Oh well...may the Lord forgive me for being so sorry for myself. :-)

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Happy Anniversary, Sister Mary Martha!

The tough, lovable, raspy, funny, and irrepressible Sister Mary Martha started her blog a year ago this month. Happy Anniversary, Sister!

Her blog is right up there on what is called the "Blogger's Choice Awards." From what I gather, the winners—there are, I think 36, categories but remember there are lots o' blogs!—will be congratulated in Las Vegas this coming November. Sister is nominated thrice...

Parenthetical comment warning:
(There are very few occasions when I've got the chance to legitimately use the word "thrice" ...forgive me for taking advantage.)

...Best Religion Blog, Best Humor Blog, and The "Blogitzer," the latter being a recognition for really good writing if I understand it correctly, and if so, Sister deserves it. Her prose combines wit with crisp, no-nonsense fun. And that ain't no oxymoron!

P.S. Okay, I stole the picture. But with the best intentions!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Sell milk affordably will you? We'll see about THAT!

Ah, Massachusetts...the liberal state.

Here, The Almighty Government Careth About Thou!

Due to our benevolence, in many cities thou shalt not smoke. Thou shalt not eat trans-fatty stuff. Thou shalt not allow thy children to become...obese. Since thou art not able to see to thy children's welfare, nor to thy own for that matter, The Government shalt taketh thy burdens off thy hands and enact commandments For Thy Own Good. (eth.)

Thou shalt not drink milk.


Yep, it's true. The state that always prides itself on its concern for The Children has ordered retailers who darest to sell milk at an affordable price to cut the crappeth out and conform to Its Rules.

And so, poor folks—and maybe not so poor folks—will most likely opt for the more affordable alternative.

Soda, anyone?

Source: The Boston Globe

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Exodus, complaints, grandparents, and Saint Jude

First of all, a message to you grandparents:

May Jesus, through the intercession of his grandparents Saints Joachim and Ann, bless you abundantly, Amen!

Now, about Exodus:

Most days I'm treated to the readings and commentaries of the Mass scriptures of the day before settling down to work.

(Not, mind you, that I get much appreciation from my business partner, or for that matter, our clients, for the work I put in each day. And, of course, since I'd forgotten to turn on the coffee maker—and who could blame me, with all I've got on my mind?—I was a little late in getting to my desk, and by the way, who anointed me the Only Person Who Answers the Phone, I'm wondering? Besides that, the melon I ate tasted funny, somehow.)

As you probably know, we're reading Exodus these days.

Upon reflection, It Seemed to Me (harrumph!) that the Chosen People had a lot of nerve, complaining as they did about everything and anything. The food. The weather. The loneliness. The strange surroundings. I mean, for Pete's sake, they'd been delivered from bleeping bondage, crossed the Red Sea, and, in today's reading, actually got a chance to get close to God Himself! Yet all they seemed to know how to do was kvetch, kvetch, kvetch.


Complacently, I did my work and at about 3:50 PM, headed toward the bus station to go to Mass.

(Normally, I'd walk. But it was so bleeping hot! All day it was sweltering. My fingers actually slipped off my keyboard more than once, do you believe it? At least the bus would be air conditioned. Maybe. Of course it would be—and was—as crowded as Noah's ark and, of course I had to stand. And trust me, the air conditioning wasn't, in my humble opinion, worth the buck fifty I had to pay. Oh, what I go through to get to Mass!)

In his homily, Father Dave focused on Exodus.

To my delight (to say nothing of my justification) he started right in on the incredible gall of the Israelites' complaints.

(Of course, it was a bit difficult for me at first to actually hear what he was saying, what with that baby three pews up from me mewing like a miserable kitten, to say nothing of the bozo behind me who decided at this moment to blow his nose loudly and with gusto.)

I found myself smiling and nodding during Father Dave's comments. Exactly. Just as I'd thought myself while going over the readings earlier that day (despite the many interruptions I'd had in endeavoring to do so!)

Then he said something rather...um...unsettling?:

"We think, sometimes, that these passages in Exodus—and throughout the Bible, for that matter—are directed at others...in this instance, the Israelites. But the Word of God is alive, and His Word is directed at us, too. Because, for example, we complain. I complain. I know I do. About the weather, food, our neighbors. Perhaps you complain, too."


After surreptitiously glancing from side to side, I at least reassured myself that the entire congregation wasn't looking accusingly at me. But I figured Someone probably was. Maybe not accusingly, but most definitely with a message in mind.

As I sat silently, the truth blasted through what I laughingly call my mind:

"Kelly. In the complaint department, those Israelites ain't got nothin' on you."

Today, at Saint Francis Chapel, is "Saint Jude Day."

On Thursdays, after Mass and before the Rosary, we pray to Saint Jude, the Patron of Hopeless and Desperate Cases. In the silence allotted to offer up our petitions, I tend to pray for things like an end to all wars, an end to abortion, a cure for cancer, another Red Sox victory...stuff like that.

Today, though, I gave Saint Jude something he might really get his teeth into.

"Saint Jude? Pray that I receive the grace to be grateful to God for all of His favors...and for Heaven's sake, to stop complaining, Amen!"

After all...nothing is impossible to God.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Ignoring "irrelevant" dogma really doesn't work, sir

On July 19, the Boston Globe published an op-ed by Sheila Rauch Kennedy. Quick recap:

Mrs. Kennedy disagreed with the Archdiocese tribunal's decision that her marriage to Joseph Kennedy II was null and void, and so she appealed to the Vatican. Ten years later, the Vatican, agreeing with Mrs. Kennedy, reversed the decision of the Archdiocesan tribunal, acknowledging that her marriage to Mr. Kennedy was indeed a valid one. Meanwhile, Mr. Kennedy has remarried. Whether this reversal on the part of the Vatican makes Mr. Kennedy and his current wife ineligible to receive the Sacraments isn't known, at least to me. Mrs. Kennedy, the first one I mean, seems to think it does. In a nutshell, her solution to the problem is to...well, to be honest I'm not sure what her solution is. And at this point I don't care to comment on the many errors in Mrs. Kennedy's column.

Because that's not my point.

What saddened me, far more than the Kennedy situation, was a letter I read regarding it in today's Globe. I reprint it here in its entirety:

July 24, 2007

FOR AGGRIEVED Catholics like Sheila Rauch Kennedy ("The 'loose canon' in the Catholic Church," Op-ed, July 19) and the millions of divorced Catholics with whom she empathizes, there is a much simpler solution than a protracted appeal to the Vatican. They may simply choose to ignore irrelevant dogma in their personal lives. It works every time.


Mr. Wildnauer may be practicing a rather dubious attempt at sarcasm. Nevertheless, this is nothing short of pitiful.

Because the thing is, far too many Catholics do ignore—if Al Gore will forgive me—the inconvenient truths. It doesn't work, it won't work, and it will never work.

Eternity, after all, is a very, very long time.

Monday, July 23, 2007

A "lay-led" parish? No.

Some closed parishes in the Archdiocese of Boston have been occupied by determined ex-parishioners for 1,000 days, reports the Boston Globe.

"After 1,000 days, I think we know what we're doing" said Maryellen Rogers , an organizer at St. Frances in Scituate. "He [Cardinal Archbishop O'Malley] could end the vigil, and reopen us as lay-led parishes."

No, he couldn't do that. A parish led by lay people isn't a Catholic parish.

I do feel for these people...in several ways.

First, I think I can understand the pain it must cause when one's parish closes. After all, while my regular parish is in a rather safe position, (it's the Mother Church of the Archdiocese), the chapel I worship at several days a week is indeed in danger of closing, and that would hurt. I admit it.

That said...

I hope I would remember that a parish church isn't what worship is all about. That's the sort of cafeteria stuff that's dangerous. Jesus isn't the exclusive property of Parish A, nor B, nor C.

I also hope that the "Communion Services" mentioned several times in this article aren't illicit.

Finally, I hope that these people—the article doesn't make it clear—realize that their obligation to participate in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on Sundays isn't replaced by any "lay led" service they may have concocted.

I do ask that you pray for these folks.


Sunday, July 22, 2007

Mary of Magdala: "Apostle to the Apostles"

Worth the read and h/t to the Marine in the Pew for the link.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

It's Saturday night...and time for Popeye the Sailor Man!

Whoo-hoo! Enjoy "The Crystal Brawl!"

Friday, July 20, 2007

Update: U.S. Bishops consorting with pro death folks to bring about...peace.

Thanks to commenter Rosa DeLauro, Connecticut
Jose Serrano, New York
James McGovern, Massachusetts
William Lacy Clay, Missouri
Anna Eshoo, California
Hilda Solis, California
Grace Napolitano, California
Joe Baca, California
Dennis Kucinich, Ohio
Jim Moran, Virginia

Excellencies and Eminences,

You don't have to clue me into the fact that you're against war. We're most of us against war! (Duh!)

Some of us, though, are against terror.

And, forgive me, but I simply cannot see anything more terrorist than killing babies.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

U.S. Bishops, Democrats, want to stop the killing?

(Update: See "Update," post directly above this one. Thanks.)

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The U.S. bishops have agreed to meet with a group of Catholic House Democrats to discuss how to pursue the goal of a "responsible transition" to end the war in Iraq.

They also reiterated their call for members of Congress and the Bush administration to break the political stalemate in Washington and "forge bipartisan policies on ways to bring about a responsible transition and an end to the war."

Yes, well, that's all well and good except for 7 points:

Out of the 14 Democrats, 7 of them are out-and-out abortion cheerleaders.

When the "dove" bishops get serious about dealing with infanticide promoters, I'll listen. Maybe I'll hear something that makes sense.

Meantime, (yes I know, I'm in the major minority!) I support the United States efforts in the war on terror...and my commander in chief. Who, not incidentally, fought the 7 immediately listed below on the partial-birth killing act.

Pro-death Bishops' confidants:

Rosa DeLauro, Connecticut
Jose Serrano, New York
James McGovern, Massachusetts
William Lacy Clay, Missouri
Anna Eshoo, California
Hilda Solis, Californi
Grace Napolitano, California


Tim Ryan, Ohio
Jim Moran, Virginia
Bart Stupak, Michigan
Joe Baca, California
Marcy Kaptur, Ohio
Dennis Kucinich, Ohio
Charlie Wilson, Ohio

Our Lady, Queen of Peace, pray for us. Our Lady, Mother of the Unborn Jesus, pray for us.

Pro-life quotes delivered daily to your mailbox

A few days ago, I signed up for the emailed version of "Unborn Word of the Day." I highly recommend it. The messages are brief, to the point, and informative.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Some beliefs o' mine...

I believe that what is now known as the Roman Catholic Church is the Church founded by Jesus Christ.

I believe that this same Church, also known as the Body of Christ, has as its Vicar of Christ the Roman Catholic Pope.

I believe that the Pontiff's words on on faith and morals are infallibly correct.

I believe that salvation was, and remains, offered to the Jews.

I believe that Jesus Christ is the Messiah promised to the Jews.

I believe—and am humbly grateful for this—that this same Messiah came to free all people from the bondages of sin.

I believe that it is my obligation to pray to God our Father that all Jews—and all people—be led to accept Jesus Christ as the Son of God, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, and the Salvation of all.

I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and life everlasting.

Just in case anybody was interested.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Aha!!! "Latin" Mass linked with pervert priests!!!

So anyway, I made this bet with myself.

"Self," I challenged, "I'll bet you it'll take maybe two days for somebody to link the liberation of the Tridentine Mass with the Catholic Church sex abuse scandal."

"You're on," I retorted. "Nobody could be that stupid."

I lost the bet...but only by a few days.

We learn from The Reverend Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite (I'm not making it up, that's her name) of the United Church of Christ (one of the one zillion, one hundred and thirty million, four hundred and twenty five and one half point two six Protestant denominations...give or take):

To me, the symbol of the Latin Mass being reintroduced in this time when the struggle to stop child sexual abuse in the Catholic Church is still going on is very instructive. The Latin Mass was a product of a reactionary time in the Catholic Church where it rejected many very necessary reforms and consolidated its power in the hierarchy. Today the re-introduction of the Latin Mass signals to me that far from becoming open to the kinds of changes needed to protect children from abuse, the Catholic Church is once again circling the wagons, rejecting necessary reforms and consolidating its power in the hierarchy.

"Kelly...not to change the subject but how could you have lost a bet with yourself??"

I'm good at it. It takes practice, of course.

'Course, technically, I didn't actually lose the bet. Ms. Thistlethwaite (by now the name is rolling off my tongue!) is, like most feather heads (please don't think I'm calling Ms. Thistlethwaite a feather head...she's got all these degrees and all) insists on calling the Tridentine Mass "The Latin Mass." Which of course it isn't. The Novus Ordo, Ms. Thistlethwaite, is "The Latin Mass."

So, while yes, a technicality, I didn't actually lose the bet.

Myself? Yes, I did.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Don't blame James Carroll

Yes, I know, as some of you have told me, that James Carroll has remained true to form in his latest diatribe against...the Catholic Church. Today his victim is in the person of the Holy Father.

(And the Council of Trent, by George!)

Mr. Carroll—or rather, The Boston Globe and her owners and sisters and brothers— are ticked off because of the one-two punch in defense of orthodoxy recently delivered by the Holy Father.

Personally, I think they're really ticked off because so many people...aren't.

And I believe the powers-that-be of the rapidly dying main stream media are in full-fledged panic-mode.

I mean, when you read something like this...

Pope Benedict, in last week's denigration of Christian traditions that lack the unbroken "apostolic succession" of Catholicism, for example, was seeking to protect the "deposit of faith," those core beliefs that were established by the Apostles themselves. But such literalist reading of apostolic succession goes out the window when one learns that none of the actual Apostles thought that they themselves were establishing a "church" in our sense, independent of Judaism. Similarly, the New Testament is "inspired," but what does that mean for appeals to "apostolic" authority when one learns that its 27 books were not "canonized" until three centuries after Jesus?

...you realize two things:

One, the columnist has an inordinate love of those annoying finger quotes. As in "apostolic succession," "inspired," "church," and so on. One can imagine him at a dinner party among the beautiful people, well-manicured hands cleverly invoking knowing laughter from the Thinking People using those—I repeat, annoying,—finger quotes.

Two, the poor guy doesn't have a clue.

Which is my point. Don't blame the bugger. He doesn't know what he's doing.

The Globe, on the other hand, has an inkling. Or thinks she does. As does her owner, that Gray Lady in Manhattan. As does most of the mainstream media.

They're as terrified—and as ferocious—as a cornered rat. Of the Catholic Church.

Why? I'm not sure, really. Do you know? I've got some ideas.

A. Homosexuality.
B. Abortion.
C. Faith.

Just some guesses, actually. The truth is, no doubt, found in today's Gospel.

“Do not think that I have come to bring peace upon the earth.
I have come to bring not peace but the sword.
For I have come to set
a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
and one’s enemies will be those of his household."

Jesus loves James Carroll. He loves the people who publish Carroll's nonsense.

But He's not about, I don't think, to stand for much nonsense. Oh, He'll let us read it. But He's given us enough grace—and wisdom, to boot—to see through it.

And to pray for those who would love to kill our Faith (as if that were possible).

And to recognize that the one who would love to kill our faith (small f) is real, and will—if we let him—do it. Through people who would rather find their lives here on Earth, even at the cost of losing their lives eternally.

It's our job to make sure that we don't lose our lives...and to try our best to make sure others don't lose theirs.

We do this through prayer and good works.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

It's Saturday night...Cartoon Time!!!

Featuring that Oscar-winning rabbit...Bugs Bunny!

Clarification on the "boy named Hell" may be needed here

I posted this.

But my source may have been wrong.

Apologies all around if I was mislead, and mislead others.

H/T to Michele Peate for the head's up.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Crossword whizzes, heads up! Be a star!

From a forum I belong to (yes, I make crossword puzzles as some of you may know although solving them is another matter altogether) via another very cool site devoted to that same pastime, and finally from Merv Griffin's contest coordinator:

We are casting for a new game show by the creator of Jeopardy and Wheel
of Fortune entitled "Merv Griffin’s Crosswords". If you are
charismatic, outgoing, and have a knack for crossword puzzles, live in
the Southern California vicinity, or plan to visit before Halloween,
please consider trying out for the show. If you know of anyone else who
fits this description, please pass along the info.

Contestants will have the opportunity to win cash and vacations.

Prospective contestants must be:

* Over the age of 18
* Have not appeared on a reality or game show in the past 6 months
* Does not know an employee of "Merv Griffin’s Crosswords", William
Morris Agency, or Merv Griffin Entertainment

Call 323.762.8282 to find out more details and to set up an audition.

Kelly Zack
Contestant Coordinator
Merv Griffin's Crosswords

N.B. Kelly Zack is no relation of Kelly Clark ;-)

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Taking the cream...

I was intrigued by "Anon's" comment on the post just below this one, regarding what I considered, and still do, to be a sensible commentary on the recent Vatican document that should be properly subtitled "Guess What???? The Pope is CATHOLIC!!!"

Anon wrote:

I'll pass on reading Fr. Morris' opinions. I am still seething over his support of Sean Hannity and his promoting of unCatholic teaching. But the paragraph you posted was a good one, to be sure. Thanks.

Fair enough. Actually, the paragraph I quoted pretty much encapsulated what Father Morris had to say, but there's some more good stuff. But, more importantly, I completely understand the reluctance to pursue what someone who has, in any way, seem to have offended the Church, has written. Or said. Or did. Et cetera.

There's this priest I know...

Oh, gosh. What can I say? There have been times when I've found myself in a quandary. Either (or so I thought) (A) pass on a daily Mass or (B) grit my teeth and suffer through it.

This priest is one of those guys who tend to act as if he's hosting a dinner party. You know what I mean and if you don't, here's an example. Just before the orate fratres he's apt to say something like:

"Friends! Our table is now prepared! Let us now pray that our meal is something-or-other." (Forgive me, I can't remember the exact words but trust me on this one, it doesn't start with "Pray, brothers...")

The man openly discourages kneeling during the Canon on the grounds that (A) the chapel has no kneelers and anyway (B) in The Early Church they didn't kneel and (C) besides that, the Church tells us to stand during the Eucharistic Prayer if no kneelers are available. (Parenthetical aside...is this true? I never heard that before. If you know, clue me in. Am I being disobedient by ignoring the urging and kneeling anyway?)

Anyway...here's the point.

I've heard some gems come out of this priest's mouth. Stuff in his sermons (yes, he would call them either "homilies" which is okay I guess or "breaking open the Word") that has knocked my socks off...stuff that I believe has helped me to become a better person. A better Catholic. Stuff I would've missed if I decided pass the Mass on the grounds of queasiness.

(And not incidentally, leave us not forget the fact that I would've missed receiving Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament!)

"Kelly...this isn't that great of an example."

Gotcha. I could give you more but I think you could give me more! How about that idiot you know that actually, in a rare burst of sensibility, said something wise to you that time? Or that outrageous, bossy, truly yucky yenta who turned out to be a major force in helping somebody unfortunate? Or—actually, this is my own example—that ratty looking foul-mouthed kid on the subway who, with some embarrassment, got up and gave his seat to an old lady, while trying gamely to ignore the hoots of his peers?

God doesn't deal in making junk.

It's an old saw, but it's true: there's something good to be found in every single person He created.

Do yourself a favor. Find it.

Take the cream. It's all yours.

(And a sincere thank you to Anon for helping me to work this out. I mean it!)

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Sensible commentary on 7/10/07 document by Father Jonathan Morris

Read the whole thing if you get a chance. I liked this paragraph:

Should we be surprised that the Pope thinks the Catholic Church was established by Jesus Christ and is the one, true Church? No, after all, if he thought the Methodists, Baptists, or any of the other thousands of Christian denominations were right, he would have joined up long ago, and he certainly wouldn’t be Pope. But he doesn’t see the unapologetic expression of theological differences as a barrier to friendship, respect and brotherhood. Have you noticed, that a false sense of tolerance has made it now almost impossible to say, “I think I’m right,” without being called a bigot?

I've noticed.

Pray for a young mom named Terri

In today's mail:

About 3 months ago, Terri started experiencing some symptoms, including some loss of taste and muscle control. After various diagnoses and treatments, a scan of her body found over 20 tumors in her brain, and what they believe to be cancer in other parts of her body. For the last week-and-a-half, she has been in the hospital, receiving radiation treatments on her head. The tumors have already responded to the radiation by starting to shrink. These treatments will continue for two more weeks, on an out-patient basis. Thankfully, she was able to return home yesterday. After radiation, she will start chemotherapy to treat other parts of her body. The type and source of cancer is still being determined.

I received this at the request of Cody's Aunt Denise. Cody, not incidentally, has had a truly miraculous recovery! Thank you for your prayers.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

One of many Motu Proprio stupid articles...this one by some guy named Flinn

We open with the terrifying news that:

CATHOLICS AROUND the world should now have no illusions. Pope Benedict XVI's recent decision to encourage wider use of the traditional Tridentine Mass in Latin is the latest move in his long campaign to undo liberal reforms in church practices popular with Catholics since the 1960s.

Not scared enough yet? Well...

The move may well trigger liturgical schisms in dioceses throughout the world.

Now, we're given a real accurate description of the Tridentine Mass:

The form of the Mass was promulgated by Pope Paul V in the Roman Missal in 1570. In this rite the priest stands on an elevated altar, facing away from the people and mumbling the most sacred parts of the liturgy in Latin.

(As an aside: this guy actually is credited with writing a book called the "Encyclopedia of Catholicism"(!))

Here's a question. If the priest faces "away from the people," where do you face during Mass? Do you, too, face "away from the people?" You do unless you're in the very last pew. How dare you!!!

Be prepared for more idiocy, friends. But hang in there.

And by the way...

Can somebody clue in Mr. Flinn on a few things? Namely, that (A) any priest can, while celebrating the Novus Ordo Mass, may face ad orientem (that would be toward the east, the rising Sun...remember to explain that "mumbled piece" of Latin to him) and that (B) the Novus Ordo Mass may be celebrated in any language—including the "mumbled" Latin—and that (C) the sanctuaries of many Roman Catholic churches, including my own parish church, are, in fact, elevated?

"Catholic Encyclopedia" indeed. Sheesh.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Welcome back, Sisters!

SPOKANE, Wash. (CNS) -- There are several paths within the journey that has brought 15 women religious into communion with the Catholic Church: care, compassion, interaction and, most certainly, prayer. Even technology played a part.

This is good news!

File this under stupid as heck (sheesh!)

A kid in Melbourne was initially rejected from enrolling in a Catholic school there because his last name is "Hell."

I'm not making this up.

The school agreed to take the kid if the kid enrolled under his mother's maiden name.

Mr. Hell took his case to the media and—surprise!—the school changed its mind.

Now Mr. Hell wants to tell the school where to go. So to speak. I don't blame him.

The name "Hell" in German—the Hell family, on the dad's side, is of Austrian heritage—means "light."

(Verified, by the way, via Free Translation.)

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Motu Proprio and Happy Days! :-)

This cracks me up!

Friday, July 06, 2007

Summorum Pontificum to be released 7-7-07 (and no, it's not anti-Semitic, sheesh)

The Vatican press office announced today the Pope's letter issued "motu proprio," on his own initiative, is titled "Summorum Pontificum," and will be released Saturday at noon, accompanied by an explanatory letter.

Several media reports erroneously contend that the letter could in effect reinstate a prayer offensive to Jews from the Good Friday liturgy of the Tridentine Mass, which dates back to 1570. The prayer stated: "Oremus et pro perfidies Judaeis" (Let us pray for the perfidious Jews).

On the first Good Friday after his election to the papacy in 1959, Pope John XXIII eliminated the adjective "perfidious" from the prayer. Since then the expression "Let us pray for the Jews" has been used.

More at Zenit.

(Personally, I can't imagine why anybody would play the anti-Semitic card about this document.)

Gloria in excelcis Deo! Et oremus pro invicem.

I love Saint Maria Goretti.

And this website.

Do read, too, the biography of Allesandro Serenelli, Maria's murderer and convert.

Need vestments? Altar linens?

You might consider the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles.

One of our apostolates is the sewing of vestments, making altar cloths, etc. These works are carried out in a spirit of silence. We pray for the priests who are going to be using the vestments and sacred Linens while we are making them.

As long as you're there, browse around the site...it's quite wonderful.

(H/T to Catholic Culture.)

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Isaac: "Where is the lamb?"/John: "Behold the Lamb of God!"

Of course one can see the name of Jesus on every page of the Old Testament and today's First Reading (from Genesis 22) is certainly no exception.

Picture young Isaac carrying the wood on his shoulders as he, without knowing it, is evidently about to be sacrificed, proving the incredible faith of our father in faith, Abraham.

It took thousands of years for little Isaac's question to be fully answered, although his father answered it well enough: "God will provide the lamb for the sacrifice."

Ecce Agnus Dei.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The Declaration

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Again, Fathers: READ the black, DO the red!

Zenit's Father Edward McNamara received a letter which, once again, points to the advisability of priests reading the missal when celebrating Mass...no matter how much they think they know the words.

Q: My parish priest recited the words of consecrating the host twice: first over the host and then over the chalice. He did not appear to notice -- although a number of parishioners did. Certainly he did not go back and recite the correct prayer. Was the consecration of the chalice valid? Was the Mass valid? There was a deacon at that Mass, but he did not intervene. He was as startled as any of us and before we realized what had happened the priest was continuing with the next part of the Eucharistic Prayer. Should the deacon have intervened at once, even to the point of interrupting the Eucharistic Prayer? Should anyone have intervened at once, even if that means calling out from the pews? -- F.T., England

Father McNamara's entire answer is great. What I love, though, is this:

It is advisable not to trust too much to memory and to read these prayers directly from the missal. Many of us have perhaps fallen into some error by excessive trust in automatic pilot.

US bishops and Amnesty International: no "neutrality"

WASHINGTON, D.C., JULY 3, 2007 (Zenit.org).- The U.S. bishops are urging Amnesty International to restore its neutral position on abortion.

While I understand the bishops' concern, I think that, as long as they're at it, they might as well go all the way.

Amnesty International, if it claims to be the guardian of human rights, should not take a "neutral position" on abortion...it should condemn it, just as it condemns other outrages against human rights.

Monday, July 02, 2007

A prayer for the vocation of marriage

Cardinal O'Malley—who is in my firm opinion is (despite our occasional disagreements) one of the holiest of men I've been privileged to know—has asked that this prayer be promulgated throughout the country. Here in Boston he's asked that it be prayed daily. The image is an icon of the Holy Family. Thank you, and may God bless you for joining us in the prayer.


Heavenly Father, through the intercession of the Holy Family, help us treasure the gift of marriage that reflects the love of Christ for the Church, where the self-giving love of husband and wife unites them more perfectly and cooperates in your plan for new life created in your image. Help us support men and women in their vocation of marriage, especially in difficult times when they join their sufferings to the Cross. Help us uphold the institution of marriage in our society as the place where love is nurtured and family life begins. Help us acknowledge that our future depends on this love and on your providential care for us. Amen.
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Mark O'Connell, J.C.D. Imprimatur: Sean Cardinal O'Malley, OFM Cap., Archbishop of Boston

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Chittister going to New Zealand galvanizes bishop

The Catholic bishop of Christchurch, Barry Jones, is opposing a visit by a controversial feminist nun from the United States.

"Controversial feminist nun." What a spin. How about "disobedient, dissident woman who claims to be Catholic?"

He has written to priests saying that next week's visit by Benedictine nun Sister Joan Chittister is unauthorised.

Permission for the event had not been sought or given, and Jones did not want it promoted through Catholic churches.

And who can blame him?

Well..."High-profile Sister Pauline O'Regan, of the Sisters of Mercy" does.

"It sort of sounds like censorship, doesn't it?"..."Sure, she challenges various things within the church, but then so do a great number of other people. Jesus challenged the leaders of his religious era," said O'Regan.

Here's a newsflash for ya, Sister Pauline...

Jesus is God. He created Judaism and its leaders. And while it's a good thing to be Christlike, Sister Chittister isn't Christ.

And "challenging" is different from unmitigated disobedience.

If you accept the fact that the Catholic Church was founded by Christ and is guided by the Holy Spirit—God—then Sister Chittister, with her unabashed dissension from Church teaching, deserves to be mercifully censored.

Source: The Press