Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Choir (Of Angels) Members



Today marks the feast of the Archangels St. Michael (Who is like God?), St. Gabriel (God is my strength), and St. Raphael (God has healed).

Fr. John Zuhlsdorf at What Does The Prayer Really Say gives a brief synopsis of the origins of today (and from where I found the photo--fedora doff to the good priest).

At the 'blog of Ignatius Press is a re-post (see, I am not the only one who does this) from an excerpt of a book by Dr. Peter Kreeft, a professor of philosophy at Boston College.

Speaking of priests, Fr. Philip Neri Powell, OP, who has his own 'blog (Domine, da nihi hanc aquam!shares his homily.

Finally, there is my post from 2006 which links to a post from the Happy Catholic.

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Originally posted 9/29/2012.
Re-posted 9/29/2015.
Re-posted 9/29/2016.
Re-posted 9/29/2017.
Re-posted 9/29/2020.

Friday, September 24, 2021

A Different "Brick By Brick"

For those of us who wish to see and work for more reverent, beautiful liturgies, progress is often measured, as Fr. John Zuhlsdorf would say, "brick by brick", one lasting incremental step at a time.

Here is another use of the phrase.

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Holiday PSA



There are only 99 shopping days until Christmas.

(Just a friendly reminder, for all you looking to beat the rush.)

UPDATE 9/15/2015:  That was back when there wasn't the glut of stores being open on Thanksgiving Day. Now it seems that day must be counted as well.

Anyway, there are only 100 shopping days until Christmas.

Avoid that last-minute rush.


**********

Originally posted 9/15/2008.
Updated and re-posted 9/15/2015.
Re-posted 9/15/2018.
Re-posted 9/15/2020.

"...You Yourself Shall Be Pierced With A Sword..."

The Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows follows the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. Once again, like the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the liturgical calendar shows us that we, like Mary, should be close to Jesus. We also must be ready to share the sorrows of both.

Many of you sing the following during the Stations of the Cross. A 13th. Century hymn, it was suppressed as a sequence by the Council of Trent, only to be restored by Benedict XIII in 1727. Its use in the Ordinary Form of the Mass is optional. The English translation is by Edward Caswall.


Stabat mater dolorosa
juxta Crucem lacrimosa,
dum pendebat Filius.

Cuyus animam gementem,
contristatam et dolentem,
pertransivit gladius.

O quam tristis et afflicta
fuit illa benedicta
Mater Unigeniti.

Quae moerebat et dolebat,
Pia Mater cum videbat
Nati poenas incliti.

Quis est homo qui non fleret,
Matrem Christi si videret
in tanto supplicio?

Quis non posset contristari,
Christi Matrem contemplari
dolentem cum Filio?

Pro peccatis suae gentis
vidit Jesum in tormentis
et flagellis subditum.

Vidit suum dulcem natum
moriendo desolatum,
dum emisit spiritum.

Eia Mater, fons amoris,
me sentire vim doloris
fac, ut tecum lugeam.

Fac ut ardeat cor meum
in amando Christum Deum,
ut sibi complaceam.

Sancta mater, istud agas,
crucifixi fige plagas
cordi meo valide.

Tui nati vulnerati,
tam dignati pro me pati,
poenas mecum divide.

Fac me tecum pie flere,
crucifixo condolere,
donec ego vixero.

Iuxta crucem tecum stare,
et me tibi sociare
in planctu desidero.

Virgo virginum praeclara,
mihi iam non sis amara:
fac me tecum plangere.

Fac ut portem Christi mortem,
passionis fac consortem,
et plagas recolere.

Fac me plagis vulnerari,
fac me cruce inebriari,
et cruore Filii.

Flammis ne urar succensus
per te Virgo, sim defensus
in die judicii

Christe, cum sit hinc exire,
da per matrem me venire
ad palmam victoriae.

Quando corpus morietur,
fac ut animae donetur
Paradisi gloria.

Amen.

++++++++++

At the cross her station keeping,
Stood the mournful Mother weeping,
Close to Jesus to the last.

Through her heart, His sorrow sharing,
All His bitter anguish bearing,
Now at length the sword had pass'd.

Oh, how sad and sore distress'd
Was that Mother highly blest
Of the sole-begotten One!

Christ above in torment hangs;
She beneath beholds the pangs
Of her dying glorious Son.

Is there one who would not weep,
Whelm'd in miseries so deep
Christ's dear Mother to behold?

Can the human heart refrain
From partaking in her pain,
In that Mother's pain untold?

Bruis'd, derided, curs'd, defil'd,
She beheld her tender child
All with bloody scourges rent.

For the sins of His own nation,
Saw Him hang in desolation,
Till His spirit forth He sent.

O thou Mother! fount of love!
Touch my spirit from above;
Make my heart with thine accord.

Make me feel as thou hast felt;
Make my soul to glow and melt
With the love of Christ our Lord.

Holy Mother! pierce me through;
In my heart each wound renew
Of my Saviour crucified.

Let me share with thee His pain,
Who for all my sins was slain,
Who for me in torments died.

Let me mingle tears with thee,
Mourning Him who mourn'd for me,
All the days that I may live.

By the cross with thee to stay,
There with thee to weep and pray,
Is all I ask of thee to give.

Virgin of all virgins best,
Listen to my fond request
Let me share thy grief divine.

Let me, to my latest breath,
In my body bear the death
Of that dying Son of thine.

Wounded with His every wound,
Steep my soul till it hath swoon'd
In His very blood away.

Be to me, O Virgin, nigh,
Lest in flames I burn and die,
In His awful Judgment day.

Christ, when Thou shalt call me hence,
Be Thy Mother my defence,
Be Thy cross my victory.

While my body here decays,
May my soul Thy goodness praise,
Safe in Paradise with Thee.

Amen.

**********

Originally published 3/21/2008 (Good Friday).
Re-posted with image 9/15/2018.
Re-posted without image 9/15/2020.

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

A Stumbling Block


Refrain:
Lift high the cross, the love of Christ proclaim,
Till all the world adore His sacred Name.

Led on their way by this triumphant sign,
The hosts of God in conquering ranks combine.

(Refrain)

Each newborn servant of the Crucified
Bears on the brow the seal of Him Who died.

(Refrain)

O Lord, once lifted on the glorious tree,
As Thou hast promised, draw the world to Thee.

(Refrain)

So shall our song of triumph ever be:
Praise to the Crucified for victory.

(Refrain)

But may I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. (Galatians 6:14)

I include my post from 2006 as well.

**********

Originally posted 9/14/2007.
Re-posted 9/14/2011.
Re-posted 9/14/2012.
Re-posted 9/14/2014.
Re-posted 9/14/2015.
Re-posted 9/14/2016.
Re-posted 9/14/2017.
Re-posted 9/14/2018.
Re-posted 9/14/2020.

PM: Special Edition--Feast Of The Exaltation Of The Holy Cross

While doing this series during the 2016 liturgical year, I knew I would inadvertently omit some major feasts. This is one of them. (I'm sure there are more.) Time to continue to correct those omissions.
We should glory in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, in whom is our salvation, life and resurrection, through whom we are saved and delivered.

V. May God have mercy on us and bless us; may he cause his face to shine upon us and may he have mercy on us

Gal. 6:14.; V. Ps. 66:2
This is also the Introit for the Mass of The Lord's Supper on Holy Thursday. The Cross has brought us all into everlasting light and eternal life. Note how the verse hearkens back to Numbers 6:24-26.
Christ became obedient for us unto death, even death on a Cross

V. Therefore God has highly exalted him, and bestowed on him the name which is above every name.

Phil. 2:8; V. 9
This is also the Gradual for Palm (Passion) Sunday. By His obedience in being brought low by being raise on the Cross and therefore exalting Himself, so are we now raised to the position of adopted children of God.
O precious wood, O precious nails, gently bearing so precious a burden; you alone were worthy to carry the King of heaven, the Lord.
Does the Alleluia verse not invoke the veneration of the Cross during the Good Friday liturgy? Or even recall the words repeated during the Stations of the Cross? "We adore you, O Christ, and we praise you; because by your holy Cross you have redeemed the world."
Protect your people, O Lord, by the sign of the holy cross, form the attack of all enemies; so that our service may be agreeable unto you and our sacrifice acceptable, alleluia.
And how quickly a variation of this verse will be heard. Just before the Prayer over the Offerings, the congregation responds to the priest's exhortation that the sacrifice being offered be worthy. "May the Lord accept the sacrifice at your hands for the praise and glory of his name, for our good and the good of all his holy Church."

By the sign of the cross, deliver us from our enemies, O Lord our God.

In hoc signo crucis vinces. "But may I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world." (Gal. 6:14) "Behold the wood of the Cross upon which hung the Saviour of the world; come, let us worship"

In Hoc Signo Crucis Vinces



Let us not then be ashamed to confess the Crucified. Be the Cross our seal made with boldness by our fingers on our brow and in everything; over the bread we eat, and the cups we drink; in our comings in, and goings out; before our sleep, when we lie down and when we awake; when we are in the way and when we are still. Great is that preservative; it is without price, for the poor's sake; without toil, for the sick, since also its grace is from God. It is the Sign of the faithful, and the dread of evils; for He has triumphed over them in it, having made a shew of them openly; for when they see the Cross, they are reminded of the Crucified; they are afraid of Him, Who hath bruised the heads of the dragon. Despise not the Seal, because of the freeness of the Gift; but for this rather honor thy Benefactor.
St. Cyril of Jerusalem, A.D. 315 - 386

V. We adore Thee, O Christ, and we bless Thee;
R. Because by Thy holy Cross Thou hast redeemed the world.

++++++++++

En ego, O bone et dulcissime Iesu, ante conspectum tuum genibus me provolvo, ac maximo animi ardore te oro atque obtestor, ut meum in cor vividos fidei, spei et caritatis sensus, atque veram peccatorum meorum poenitentiam, eaque emendandi firmissimam voluntatem velis imprimere; dum magno animi affectu et dolore tua quinque vulnera mecum ipse considero ac mente contemplor, illud prae oculis habens, quod iam in ore ponebat tuo David propheta de te, o bone Iesu: Foderunt manus meas et pedes meos: dinumeraverunt omnia ossa mea. Amen.

++++++++++

Behold, O good and most sweet Jesus, I fall upon my knees before Thee, and with most fervent desire beg and beseech Thee that Thou wouldst impress upon my heart a lively sense of faith, hope and charity, true repentance for my sins, and a firm resolve to make amends. And with deep affection and grief, I reflect upon Thy five wounds, having before my eyes that which Thy prophet David spoke about Thee, o good Jesus: "They have pierced my hands and feet, they have counted all my bones." Amen.

**********

Originally posted 9/14/2006.
Re-posted 9/14/2017.
Re-posted 9/14/2018.
Re-posted 9/14/2020.

Sunday, September 12, 2021

I, 16

Bingo!

Here I am again, celebrating another 'blogiversary. 

Some would say I am just taking up needless pixels and cloud space. I can see that point. This "still, small voice" may have gone past its expiration date a long time ago. Meaningful contributions to "the cacophony of chatter in the 'blogosphere", however defined, perhaps are few and far between. Whatever promise this 'blog had in its beginnings is long gone.

Yet, here I am again, celebrating another 'blogiversary.

One has to remember creating pixels and cloud space, even though a finite activity, seems to have no definite end in sight. As I have looked back at the times when I have re-use previous posts, taking from my store old material, it still has meaning; perhaps I think there is a timeless message within them. While new posts are rare, they still are built upon the foundation of wanting to say something thoughtful and meaningful. And who says the Holy Spirit couldn't spark a renewal? It might be akin to the resuscitation of Lazarus, or it could be more like coming out of a coma.

For better or worse, there still is interest in maintaining this. While life has gotten in the way, this continues to be a part of mine. I think it can still serve some kind of purpose; discerning it is still ongoing.

So I will continue apace with what is routine, even traditional in the life of this 'blog. There are still "so many subjects, so little time", although I have narrowed down what catches my interest. I don't promise anything other than a honest and sincere appearance whenever I do take fingers to keyboard.

Yes, here I am again, celebrating another 'blogiversary.

The light is still on; the invitation is still outstanding.

You are always still welcome to my infinitesimal corner of the universe.

Saturday, September 11, 2021

A Day A Score Away

20 years now.
Where'd they go?
20 years.
I don't know.
I sit and I wonder sometimes
Where they've gone.

From "Like A Rock", by Bob Seger

The word "score" has quite a few definitions. Three of them stand out to me. First, as a sports fan, it is the fulfillment of the requirements in the rules to create a point or points. Second, as a musician, it is the manuscript which contains all parts of a composition. But it is the last one which sets the tone for this post. It is a measure of time which spans twenty years.

That is where we are today.

We are two decades removed from the greatest terrorist attack in this country's history. Four hijacked airplanes. Three cities now forever linked in history's annuls:  New York, NY; Washington, DC; and Shanksville, PA. 2,996 lives lost; thousands more altered. A blood red-letter day when we recall where we were when it happened.


Even now, as the country seems to be taking a new approach to the "war on terror" after twenty years, we still have unresolved questions. As I have suggested in other tribute posts, this is as much a spiritual battle as it is as ideological one. This was an incident where Satan just decided to discard his facade and give us a direct look at his face. "I caused this effect. Look at me. Look at my power. Fear me. Bow to me. Give up and give in." And then we are reminded by our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, "I have told you this so that you might have peace in me. In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have conquered the world." (John 16:33) The victory is won; however, the battles in this spiritual war still need to be waged. Part of those battles will involve terroristic acts by the enemy and those who agree with him. Turning the other cheek cannot be an option if true justice is required.


We as a country vowed to "Never Forget". Ceremonies and tributes have and will take place from sea to shining sea. Attend one if you can. Find more eloquent words than mine (in terms of finding them and they being more eloquent, it shouldn't be difficult). And while the idea of turning this into a national "Patriot's Day" has faded, what this means to us as a nation shouldn't. This was a rallying point which allowed us to set aside our differences and come together in a common cause. It is that spirit of unification which is needed now more than ever as we contend with enemies both foreign and domestic, those that legitimately want to do "We the People" great harm.

We grieve with those who still mourn. We aid those who still need our help. We honor those who for seemingly no good reason are not with us. I once again offer these intercessions for your prayerful consideration (as I did in 2007, 2013, and 2018):

1. The souls of all who died.
2. Those who still mourn.
3. Those who seek a just solution. (While this may have been accomplished May 1, 2011, have we really solved the problem?)
4. Forgiveness toward our enemies.
5. Our enemies (didn't Someone command us to do this?).
6. The courage to continue the fight.
7. Peace.

Where have these twenty years gone? Seemingly no closer to solutions. Some peace, but yet an uneasiness still lingers. So does the sadness. Yet we are here. An obligation we have voluntarily undertaken and so will continue to do. And, perhaps someday with the grace of God, it will still retain its meaning without the underlying motivations and become a fitting tribute to a time when Uncle Sam got a black eye and overcame it.

Never Forget.

Wednesday, September 01, 2021

September 2021 Morning Offering Prayer Intention

 Here is the intention for this month when prayer the Morning Offering:

An environmentally sustainable lifestyle. We pray that we all will make courageous choices for a simple and environmentally sustainable lifestyle, rejoicing in our young people who are resolutely committed to this.

A reflection for this intention is found here.