Friday, October 09, 2015

Synod's most memorable tweet to date

South Africa's Wilfred Cardinal Napier right back at pro-homosexual Vatican spokesman, Fr. Thomas Rosica:

[Hat tip to Ryan Fitzgerald, "Prominent Cardinal Corrects Vatican Spokesman" (Church Militant, October 9, 2015)]

October Synod's "gay press conferences"

The pro-gay attempt to manipulate the Synod's press conferences at the Vatican is so transparent that it's almost as amusing as it is embarrassing and disturbing. Fr. Thomas Rosica has apparently become the English "voice" mediating spinning the Synod's supposed happenings at the daily press conferences.

Here is Michael Voris's report on the Synod's recent "Gay press conferences" (Church Militant, October 9, 2015).

"Romano Amerio Defends Tradition from the Grave"

In case you missed it, Br. Andre Marie's article, "Romano Amerio Defends Tradition from the Grave" (, July 12, 2010): 
Sandro Magister brings our attention to the volume Zibaldone, a posthumously published work of the great Swiss-Italian Philosopher, Romano Amerio. The work is edited by Amerio’s student, Professor Enrico Maria Radaelli, whom we have mentioned on this site before. Like his Iota Unum — which is subtitled “a study of the changes in the Catholic Church in the twentieth century” — Zibaldone presents a frank yet respectful critique of the conciliar and post-conciliar changes. Magister gives us a taste of Amerio’s writing, a passage dated May 2, 1995. Note the defense of “the value of baptism and the entire supernatural order, our whole religion”:

The self-demolition of the Church deplored by Paul VI in the famous speech at the Lombard Seminary on September 11, 1974, is becoming clearer by the day. Even during the council itself, Cardinal Heenan (Primate of England) complained that the bishops had ceased exercising the office of the magisterium, but comforted himself with the observation that this office was fully preserved in the Roman pontificate. The observation was and is false. Today the episcopal magisterium has ceased, and that of the pope as well. Today the magisterium is exercised by theologians who have shaped all of the opinions of the Christian people, and have disqualified the dogma of the faith. I heard an astonishing demonstration of this while listening to the theologian of Radio Maria last night. With boldness and great tranquility, he denied articles of the faith. He taught […] that the pagans to whom the Gospel is not proclaimed, if they follow the dictates of natural justice and try to seek God with sincerity, will go to the beatific vision. This modern doctrine goes back to the ancient Church, but it was always condemned as error. But the ancient theologians, while they held firm the dogma of the faith, nevertheless felt all of the difficulty that dogma encounters, and tried to overcome it with profound thinking. The modern theologians, however, do not perceive the intrinsic difficulties of dogma, but run straight to the ‘lectio facilior,’ sweeping all the doctrinal decrees of the magisterium under the rug. And they do not realize that by doing this they negate the value of baptism and the entire supernatural order, our whole religion. Rejection of the magisterium is widespread on other points as well. Hell, the immortality of the soul, the resurrection of the body, the immutability of God, the historicity of Christ, the unlawfulness of sodomy, the sacred and indissoluble nature of matrimony, the natural law, the primacy of the divine are other arguments in which the magisterium of the theologians has eliminated the magisterium of the Church. This arrogance of the theologians is the most visible phenomenon of self-demolition.

Magister’s brief article is worth reading.
[Hat tip to JM]

"Synod & Council: The Conservatives' Failed Strategy"

Boniface, "Synod & Council: The Conservatives' Failed Strategy" (Unam Sanctam Catholicam, October 8, 2015):

I have not offered much thought or commentary on the 2015 Synod thus far; my reasons are fairly the same as those offered by Ryan Grant in his recent article "Why no synod coverage?" (Athanasius Contra Mundum, Oct. 7, 2015); at any rate, by now there is ample evidence to prove that Synod 2014 was rigged, and nobody should be surprised that the 2015 Synod will be pushed towards a predetermined outcome as well. Rorate just had an excellent piece suggesting that the Synod is turning into Vatican III. Radicals will always hijack these sorts of deliberatory bodies, taking advantage of procedure to relentlessly drive their progressive agenda.

Is anyone really surprised by this? Anyone who has been paying attention should not be. What is surprising is not that the liberals are trying to turn this into Vatican III, but that the conservatives are making the same fundamental errors they made at Vatican II.

Say what you want about the liberals, but they know how to set an agenda and ram it through. They position themselves to get the right press at the right time. They appeal to the emotions. If they want something done, they get their people in the right places, dominate committee discussions, relentlessly use the parliamentary processes to drive their agenda, and shut down opposition. They find pretexts to eject orthodox candidates from seminary. They orchestrate the firing of faithful Catholic journalists. In short, they fight.

I have been in government before, and I tell you, those who win are not necessarily those who have the best or "right" ideas, but those who know how to use the existing authority structure to facilitate the implementation of their ideas. They fight and they use the system and its structures to fight for them.

Conservatives do not fight, at least not in this manner. Sure, they think they do; we talk about fighting the good fight and all that, but by and large conservatives do not try to drive their agenda.

Conservatives tend to take the misguided position that merely speaking the truth is sufficient. That, in the face of the liberal onslaught, it is enough to calmly reaffirm the Church's constant teaching, perhaps in the naive confidence that the truth will always win out in the free marketplace of ideas. Are the liberals ramming through a heterodox praxis? Publish an article on the Church's real teaching. Are they dominating the procedures of a meeting to get their people on the right committees and drive their agenda? Give a talk. Just speak the truth. Hand out copies of a book.

Thursday, October 08, 2015

Robert Hickson: review of Joseph Pieper's The Challenge of Tradition

Dr. Robert Hickson, "The Challenge of Tradition" (, October 1, 2015):
Tradition as Challenge is the title of Josef Pieper’s recently published and long awaited English translation of Tradition als Herausforderung — his deeply reflective and engagingly varied book of collected essays and speeches first published as a whole in Munich, Germany in 1963, over a half century ago. This counterpointed collection still has much to teach an attentive and receptive reader, especially those who want to understand more fully, and in a more differentiated way, the Concept and Reality of Tradition. Although the book’s original reflections were first published just after World War II — and mainly between the years 1952-1960 (with one exception, in 1962, an essay on the concept and reality of virtue) — Dr. Pieper’s insights are both timeless and also timely. For, it is the case that many professed Catholics today, even high prelates of the Church, are dismissing or irreverently trivializing the meaning and reality of Sacred Tradition, not only certain longstanding ecclesiastical traditions, but also fundamental Tradition as such as an indispensable source of Divine Revelation, to include the reliable authority to have chosen the adequate and final Canon of Divinely Revealed Sacred Scripture.

Although this essay proposes now to consider only a few of Josef Pieper’s reflections in his versatile Anthology, we hope that the reader will be thereby sufficiently inspired to read and to savor the entire book.

[Hat tip to Sir A.S.]

Excerpt: "Brief Apology for the Church of all Time" by Fr. Roger-Thomas Calmel

As posted here on A Catholic Life, a timely piece re-posted here to provoke critical reflection and elicit your thoughts:
“However crazily the Catholic hierarchy may behave, priests cannot take the place of bishops, nor can laity take the place of priests. Do we then think of setting up a huge worldwide league or association of priests and Christian layfolk to enter into dialogue with the hierarchy and force them to restore Catholic order ? It is a grand and touching idea, but it is unreal. That is because any such group, wanting to be a Church group but being neither a diocese nor an archdiocese nor a parish nor a religious order, will come under none of the categories over which and for which authority is exercised in the Church. It will be an artificial grouping, an artefact unknown to any of the Church’s real groups which are established and recognized as such.

“So, as with every grouping together of men, the problem of leadership and authority will arise, and the huger the group, the sharper the problem. Unfailingly it will come down to this: being an association, the group must solve the problem of authority; being artificial (no kind of natural or supernatural group), it cannot solve the problem of authority. Rival sub-groups will rapidly arise, war will become inevitable, and there will be no canonical way to end or wage such a war.

“Are we then condemned to being able to do nothing amidst the chaos, often a sacrilegious chaos? I do not think so. Firstly, the indefectibility of the Church guarantees that down to the end of the world there will be enough of a genuine personal hierarchy to maintain the sacraments, in particular the Eucharist and Holy Orders, and to preach the one and only unchanging doctrine of Salvation. And secondly, whatever be the failings of the real hierarchy, we all of us, priests and laity, have our little part of authority.

“Therefore let the priest capable of preaching go to the limits of his power to preach, to absolve sins and to celebrate the true Mass. Let the teaching Sister go to the limits of her grace and her power to form girls in the Faith, good morals, purity and literature. Let every priest and layman, every little group of laity and priests having authority and power over a little fort of the Church and Christendom, go to the limits of their possibilities and powers. Let leaders and inmates of such forts know and be in contact with one another. Let each of the forts protected, defended, trained and directed in its praying and singing by a real authority, become as far as possible a fortress of holiness. That is what will guarantee the continuation of the true Church and will prepare efficaciously for its renewal in God’s good time.

“So we need not to be afraid, but to pray with all confidence and to exercise without fear, according to Tradition and in the sphere that is ours, the power we have, preparing thus for the happy time when Rome will come back to being Rome and bishops to being bishops.”
[Hat tip to Sir A.S.]

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

"Failed" marriages and the October Synod

Can we speak of sacraments "failing," "failed baptisms," "failed ordinations"? Why so much talk in Rome about "failed marriages" then?

Some good ideas here. Why don't we hear sermons like this anymore?

Michael Voris, "The Vortes -- 'Failed' Marriages" (Church Militant, October 6, 2015)

These would-be immigrants are not political refugees!

They are distributed in deliberate groupings, know exactly where they are headed and what their plan of action is, and it's not pretty. (I'm sorry the article is in Spanish. Read it if you can.)


No, esa gente no son terroristas (aunque seguramente los haya), ¡esta gente tiene el apoyo logístico y son enviados para destruir a Europa, sus leyes, su sentido!

... “Voy a Suecia”, me dice un inmigrante ilegal mostrando un documente en el que se le indica que debe ir hacia la Feria de Zagreb

Esta gente ni tiene hambre ni sed – ¡me lo dijeron ellos mismos! ¡Están distribuidos por grupos! Cada grupo se compone de varias decenas de hombres en la edad militar, y cada grupo tiene una o dos mujeres con varios niños. ¡Cada grupo tiene a un lider que sabe exactamente hacia dónde ir! ¡No les afectan las circunstancias, parecen programados, tienen un fin! Sea ese fin Finlandia, Suecia, Alemania, no importa porque están convencidos que ellos pueden pasar las fronteras y así llegar hasta la Medan. ¡Lo mejor de todo ello es que lo consiguen!

[Hat tip to Roberto Winter]

After the 'lío'

"After the 'lío'" Fr. Ray Blake's Blog, October 6, 2015):
I have been pondering the connection between 'trust' and 'faith'. Because Christ gave us a Church founded on the Apostles rather than a book in order for people to believe in Christ they must first of all trust the Apostles, the bishops are the successors of the Apostles. Perhaps the saddest development in the Church has been the break down in trust between the faithful and their bishops and maybe equally important the paralleled break down in the trust between the world and the Church, to the point, in the West at least, where the idea of the Church was on the verge of becoming toxic.

The child abuse crisis was certainly one important contributor contributor to this toxicity. It is interesting to compare the two ways in which Francis and Benedict dealt with it. Benedict, with a truly pastoral heart, dealt personally with cases brought to him. It was his Friday penance to weep over and deal with the dossiers, and every pastoral visit had with it a meeting with the abused and a public apology. Francis, a more political Pope, or perhaps just a more skilled administrator, has set up a commission to deal with the matter, has had a few meetings with abused but still feels able to console the US bishops on the suffering they endured over the issue and is confident enough to invite Cardinal Daneels, who has a well documented history of cover-up to the Synod, and the media seem quite disinterested.

One of things we might admire Francis for is taking the poison out of the relationship between the Church and the world. In many ways he is less revolutionary than his predecessor, he says and does the things the world expects the Pope to say and do. One of the problems is perhaps that he appeals more to those outside the Church than those inside it. Benedict carefully chose to conceal the Papacy under signs and symbols, Francis has got rid of most of those and placed his personality front and centre. The world seems more comfortable with that, it can deal with 'personalities' especially political ones. One of things that fascinates me is that, listening to the Pope, I never quite know what he is saying or I think he is saying one thing, only to have it readjusted a few days later, if it has caused a little storm in the media, by Fr Lombardi, who carefully explains what His Holiness had really meant.

The change in the relationship of the Church and the media is the most significant but within the Church Francis seems to be much more divisive figure. 'Cardinals are fighting like ferrets in a sack', as one commentator said recently. The bishops arriving at the Synod can easily be divided into 'innovators' and those who oppose them, even Cardinal Prefects speak openly of the possibility of schism. There is a sense of suspicion alive in the Church, an open mistrust of certain bishops and some even dare to suggest that the Pope himself is not to be trusted, though more loyal Catholics are likely to criticise the Pope's ministers rather than the Pope himself. There seems in some instances a visceral hatred of Francis on some internet sites.

Again, as one recent commentator said, 'No-one disputes Pope Francis can make a mess (lio), now he must bring order out of the mess'. Perhaps Cardinal Erdo's opening speech to the Synod yesterday was the beginnings of that. The Papacy as portrayed by both Vatican Councils is hardly the vision most Catholics have. Pastor Aeternus seems a closed book to many Catholics and certainly to the worldly media (Dr DeVille has a very good article on the limits of Papal authority). Jesus Christ, not the Pope, is after all the head of the Church, though many Catholics, even some bishops might go along with the rather iffy Mgr Pinto of the, Dean of the Rota saying,  "The Jubilee Year of Mercy expects this sign of humble obedience (on the part of the Church's shepherds) to the Spirit who speaks to them through Francis". That is just Ultramontane heresy, with friends like that who needs enemies?

The centrality of Peter is essential to the Church, it is Dr DeVille points out at the service of 'unity'. After the lio Pope Francis has to re-establish trust not just in himself but in but in the bishops in the Church as he has done outside it in his Papacy, because trust is an essential to faith and mistrust of the Pope and Bishops is seriously damaging to the Church's integrity and ultimately to individuals' faith. Unitatis Redintegratio is clear that not only is disunity a scandal but it is also detrimental to faith. Speaking for myself the shifting sands of the build up to the Synod has hardly strengthened my faith.

Monday, October 05, 2015

"Change a culture, keep the doctrine"

Fr. Ray Blake has an interesting analysis of an Italian Communist thinker and the bearing his ideas may have on the thinking of the "shadow synod," or those teutonic bishops hell-bent on getting their way in the upcoming Synod. The title of his piece is "Change a Culture, Keep the Doctrine" (Fr. Ray Blake's Blog, October 1, 2015).

The upshot? You need have no fear that doctrine will be changed. It won't. But what the teutonic clique has learned ever since the Rhine flowed into the Tiber during Vatican II is that you don't exactly need to change doctrine to get your way. All you need to do is change the culture. How do you do that? By changing the language. Getting bishops and priests and other Catholics to sideline doctrine (it's not going to change anyway, so what of it?) and concentrate on talking about "pastoral provisions," "mercy," "compassion," etc. It's a lot like what Christopher Ferrara talks about under the heading of "viruses." Things like "religious liberty," "ecumenism" and "dialogue" are not doctrinal novelties. You can't really make accusations of "heresy" stick in reference to Vatican II documents, no matter what some traddies suggest. Rather, they are "viruses." What does he mean? New emphases that cannot be stated in clear propositions but can muster a shift in Catholic culture. "Dialogue" suggests all sorts of things. It is rich with an impressive plethora of connotations. Without casting a single shadow on any doctrine, it can shift us away from Tridentine "triumphalism" to a culture of relativism in which we no longer talk about the Catholic Church as the Church outside of which there is no salvation. That just doesn't sit well anymore. Like hell. Who talks about hell and the devil anymore. It's like brining up sex and politics in polite company: simply rude. These ideas needs finessing. Thus we're off and running.

Read the lives of the saints. Read Holy Scripture. Read St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Augustine. And, above all, pray; and I mean spend some serious time everyday in prayer and meditation. Communicate with God almighty. This will keep you grounded, unlike synodical reports, as entertaining as they may be.

[Hat tip to Sir A.S.]

Sunday, October 04, 2015

Don't you wish some cardinals would just stay away from the media sharks?

Cindy Wooden, "Stable gay relationship is better than a 'temporary' one, says Cardinal Schönborn" (Catholic Herald, September 11, 2015). You think there might have been something more significant for the cardinal to address on September 11th, or, heck, any day ...

Why politics, whether secular or ecclesial, shouldn't become the focus of our lives

Everyone knows how secular politics can become all-consuming, especially as election time nears. Radio talk shows and TV shows have already been talking about the Republican debates, and even a possible debate on the Democrat side, as though it's a cliff hanger from the latest soap opera. And the elections are over a year away. I know a few retired people who get so wrapped up in elections that they follow politics on television almost round the clock.

What made politics such an all consuming thing? There almost seems to be a sort of messianic mania that seizes many people every four years or so. But it's a serious distortion of life to see everything as reducible to politics. This strikes me as a sort of sickness, and I've seen it in Mr. Obama, when he's inclined to turn every occasion, whether it's related to foreign diplomacy or a domestic news-event, as an opportunity to campaign.

I'm not sure this is a result of a statist mentality, but it could be related -- the view that the state is of all-consuming importance. But clearly there are other important things in life, from baseball games, or taking the wife out on a date, to the salvation of one's soul. The Catholic principle of subsidiarity somewhat speaks to this, if only obliquely -- that there are other spheres of life besides the state where decisions can and should be made, and in fact can be made more effectively.

The same sort of manic obsession with politics can take hold of our minds also in the ecclesial sphere. Hanging on every word uttered during an in-flight interview by Pope Francis, or by a gay CDF agent who exploited the upcoming synod as an opportunity to "come out" and have his day in the lime light, or what the "shadow synod" is planning by way of sabotaging or hijacking the synod ... All these sorts of "news" are fodder for the media mills to be spun this way or that by excited newsmakers and interpreted by various supporters and critics of this side or that.

This is not to say that politics, whether secular or ecclesial, are not important. Events and decisions that can have momentous import for our lives unfold in that sphere. Yet these a regular quotidian diet of news about such politics can also serve as a distraction from other still-more important things in our lives.

Life goes on. Marriages, families, schools, church, work -- all these go on. And they're important too. In fact, in some ways they are more important. Think about those of the previous generation, parents or grandparents, and others -- friends and loved ones -- who have passed from this world to their eternal reward. What was it about their lives that was most ultimately most important? Was it really all that important who was president or pope during their lives? Wasn't it more important how they lived, how they treated their families, friends, and enemies, how courageous and dependable they were in the performance of their duties, simply and without fuss? Wasn't it more important whether they were morally upright, forgiving, merciful and just than who they had as a senator or bishop? Wasn't the most important thing of all the question whether they managed to make what Catholics call "a good death" and not being caught dead in a state of mortal sin?

What is our purpose here? Why did God place us here on earth? He created us because He loves us and wants us to spend eternity with Him in the fellowship of the Holy Trinity. But that requires seeing this life, not as an end-in-itself where the one who dies with the most toys wins, but as a probationary phase, a testing period in which we have the opportunity to cooperate with God's grace and have our say in where we hope to spend eternity.

This doesn't mean that we must always go around being solemn about everything. Far from it. St. Philip Neri was never solemn. But he was serious. Even when he used turned the cardinal's cap that was given to him into a football to kick around with some kids. But it means, as C.S. Lewis once wrote, "that our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously—no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption. And our charity must be a real and costly love, with deep feeling for the sins in spite of which we love the sinner—no mere tolerance or indulgence which parodies love as flippancy parodies merriment. Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object presented to your senses. If he is your Christian neighbour he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat — the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden." (The Weight of Glory, p. 9)

[As a footnote, let me add that I will continue posting articles about current events in the secular and religious political world; but I encourage all my readers to take these things, as I do, cum magno grano salis -- that is, with a large grain (or boulder) of salt!]

Fr. Perrone: 10 points about the Rosary (N.B. - Very interesting!)

Fr. Eduard Perrone, "A Pastor's Descant" [temporary link] (Assumption Grotto News, October 4, 2015):
This is the month of the Holy Rosary and I want to make ten brief points about it that you may find interesting. I’ll enumerate them so as to fit it as much as I can in a short space, a little departure from my accustomed fustian.

1. In the public recitation, the Hail Marys dovetail but can even slightly overlap because these prayers are not so much deliberate repetitions but a stream of sound over which the meditation of the mysteries are meant to predominate, much like the connecting links which join the beads. Saying the rosary with too deliberate an emphasis on each word might even be an impediment to a more thoughtful concentration on the mysteries. The continual sounding of the Hail Marys forms background music for the delight of the Holy Virgin’s ears (reminding Her of Annunciation day when She first heard the Archangel’s greeting) while the mind considers some aspect of the mystery announced for each decade.

2. The physical chain of the rosary is a tactile thing that ought to be used, at least by the leader in a group recitation (though it’s use is advisable for all participants). This feeling of the rosary beads in the hand is–besides being a counting device–a symbolic contact with Our Lady since the blest beads form a sacramental.

3. Catholics today are losing the practice of repetitive prayer – the rosary being the principal one. Litanies and pious aspirations are also, I fear, passé for many. One should not dismiss these kinds of prayer from the warning of the Gospel about the vanity of the mindless repetition of prayers. The bible itself offers examples of litanies as well as descriptions of insistent and repetitive prayer (think here of the man in the parable who knocks pertinaciously on the door to rouse his sleepy neighbor until he should answer). The analogy of lovers is apropos: there’s no limit to the repetition of loving words between them.

4. Secondary prayers that are often attached to the rosary are not, strictly speaking, necessary. After each decade, for example, there’s the laudable custom of saying the Fatima prayer, “ O my Jesus, forgive us our sins...” Since this addition was requested by Holy Mary Herself, there’s excellent reason for adding it, but the rosary would still be valid without it. Moreover, prayers often said at the end, “Hail, Holy Queen, the versicle and response, and final prayer are not necessary, though certainly good to include. Prayers for the Pope are necessary only for gaining the plenary indulgence (one Our Father & Hail Mary are minimally required), but even in public recitation these may be done privately rather than aloud.

5. At the start of the rosary there are the three ‘little’ Hail Marys which are often announced as being “for an increase of faith, hope, and charity.” Nothing wrong with that. I myself do not say this because I offer them for chastity and don’t want to limit their purpose.

6. The rosary is the only prayer I can think of that heaven asked to be said daily. (The Lord’s Prayer, of course, does ask for “daily bread” but there’s no command that it be said daily. That being said, however, it’s expected that you say this prayer many times every day.) Since Mary Herself asked for the daily rosary, I can’t figure how some Catholics omit it.

7. Because the holy names of Jesus and Mary are so often repeated in saying the rosary, bowing the head [need] not be observed each time. Ditto for the Glory be to the Father which, in other contexts, would direct one to bow the head.

8. The Hail Mary and the Lord’s Prayer have not been updated in the English language. Thus, the archaic forms are still to be observed: ‘the Lord is with Thee;” hallowed be Thy name;” etc. There might be some dispute in the case of the Glory be prayer since it does have an official new form for use in the Divine Office said in English. Arguably this new form applies only to the Divine Office and not elsewhere.

9. Moslems were defeated in history from dominating Christian lands through the wide use of the rosary. The alarming spread of Islamic people and religion in Christian territory with the imposition of the anti-Christian laws and even persecution of Christians may well be due to the lapse in saying the rosary.

10. Rosary beads should be made of noble but not necessarily precious materials. Anything for which the Church’s blessing is sought ought to have a certain nobility that indicates its sacred use. Personally speaking, I’m appalled over some rosaries I’ve been asked to bless that are cheaply made or that look more like toys than holy objects. One ought to use fine things as instruments of prayer.

Fr. Perrone

Tridentine Community News - The Seven Sorrows Devotion, All-Male Altar Server Programs Attract More Volunteers, Ordination of Deacon John Tonkin on October 17, Tridentine Mass schedule

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

Tridentine Community News by Alex Begin (October 4, 2015):
October 4, 2015 - External Solemnity of Our Lady of the Rosary

The Seven Sorrows Devotion

Popularized by the Servite order since the 17th century, and indeed continuing to this day at the Servites’ Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica in Chicago, the devotion to the Seven Sorrows of the Blessed Virgin Mary unites us with the sufferings of our Blessed Mother. Various lengthy novenas exist, but the simplest, most basic form of the devotion is provided below.

The Blessed Virgin Mary grants seven graces to the souls who honor her daily by saying seven Hail Marys and meditating on her tears and dolors (sorrows). The devotion was passed on by St. Bridget.
  1. I will grant peace to their families.
  2. They will be enlightened about the divine mysteries.
  3. I will console them in their pains, and I will accompany them in their work.
  4. I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable will of my divine Son or the sanctification of their souls.
  5. I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy, and I will protect them at every instant of their lives.
  6. I will visibly help them at the moment of their death; they will see the face of their Mother.
  7. I have obtained from my divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolors will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven, and my Son and I will be their eternal consolation and joy.
  1. The prophecy of Simeon (St. Luke 2: 34, 35)
  2. The flight into Egypt (St. Matthew 2: 13, 14)
  3. The loss of the Child Jesus in the temple (St. Luke 2: 43-45)
  4. The meeting of Jesus and Mary on the Way of the Cross
  5. The Crucifixion and Death of Jesus
  6. The taking down of the Body of Jesus from the Cross
  7. The burial of Jesus
(Say one Hail Mary while meditating on each Sorrow.)

[Above content taken from the Seven Sorrows Devotion prayer card issued by Our Lady of the Rosary Library (]
All-Male Altar Server Programs Attract More Volunteers

Fr. John Hollowell, pastor of Annunciation and St. Paul’s Churches in Brazil, Indiana, published an informal study of the effect of switching to all-male altar server programs in Ordinary Form parishes. While the sample size is admittedly small, it confirms what Extraordinary Form communities have long experienced: a challenging, all-male altar server program has no trouble attracting volunteers. His conclusion: “The average parish surveyed, when switching from co-ed servers to male-only saw their server numbers grow 450%.”

Ordination of Deacon John Tonkin on October 17

Another local vocation to the priesthood reaches its culmination on Saturday, October 17: Deacon John Tonkin, a native of Windsor, will be ordained to the sacred priesthood for the Canons Regular of the New Jerusalem at 10:00 AM at St. James the Greater Church in Charles Town, West Virginia. The ordaining prelate will be Bishop Athanasius Schneider. Monsignor Andrew Wadsworth, a liturgical expert and co-founder of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri in formation in Washington, DC will be the ceremonial coordinator. Wassim Sarweh will be a member of the choir.

A small group from metro Detroit and Windsor will be attending. Please e-mail the address at the bottom of the page if you would like to share a rental car from Washington Dulles Airport on Friday afternoon, October 16, and returning Saturday afternoon, October 17.

Tridentine Masses This Coming Week
  • Mon. 10/05 7:00 PM: Low Mass at St. Josaphat (St. Placid & Companions, Martyrs)
  • Tue. 10/06 7:00 PM: Low Mass at Holy Name of Mary (St. Bruno, Confessor)
  • Sat. 10/10 10:00 AM: High Mass at Felician Sisters’ Convent Chapel, Livonia, MI (St. Francis Borgia, Confessor) – Celebrant: Canon Ed Gardner, ICRSP
  • Sun. 10/11: No Mass at OCLMA/Academy of the Sacred Heart
[Comments? Please e-mail Previous columns are available at This edition of Tridentine Community News, with minor editions, is from the St. Albertus (Detroit), Academy of the Sacred Heart (Bloomfield Hills), and St. Alphonsus and Holy Name of Mary Churches (Windsor) bulletin inserts for October 4, 2015. Hat tip to Alex Begin, author of the column.]

Tridentine Masses coming to metro Detroit and east Michigan this week

Tridentine Masses This Coming Week