What the Duke wanted for his daughter

1966 – With Deeno.

John Wayne… Catholic.

4 votes, 4.00 avg. rating (80% score)
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Posted in Just Too Cool | Tagged , | 2 Comments

3 March RELEASE – PRE-ORDER new music CD for Easter from Benedictines of Mary


There is a new video about them.

____ ORIGINAL Published on: Feb 14, 2015 @ 14:47

I announce tidings of joy.   The wonderful Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles have a new music CD … for EASTER.  It will be released on 3 March 2015.

Here are some samples that I was sent in advance.  I spliced together some excerpts just to tantalize.

benedictines easter


UK denizen?  Click HERE

And don’t forget their disc, already released for LENT!


UK dwellers can get it HERE.

BTW… check out their photos of the recent solemn profession!  HERE


23 votes, 4.43 avg. rating (88% score)
Posted in Just Too Cool, The Campus Telephone Pole, Women Religious | Tagged , | 9 Comments

St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows: Patron of Handgunners

St. GabrielA saint for today.  Terrorists invade your town and set about to do terrible things….

… someone to pray to when ISIS – or whomever – comes to your neighborhood.

Today is the feast of St. Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows, Gabriel Possenti.  His feast is set for the third day before the Kalends of March, which is two days before March 1. During a Leap Year, when there is a 29th day in February, the date two days before 1 March is 29 February. Otherwise his feast is 27 February. 27 February is the day he died and was born into heaven in 1862.  I visited his shrine beneath the great mountain Gran Sasso in Italy while I was in seminary.

Little Francesco Possenti came from a large family, 13 children, in Spoleto and was baptized in the same baptismal font as St. Francis of Assisi.

During a childhood illness he promised to become a religious if he were healed. This actually happened twice, but like many of us who make promises to God if He would only do something for us, Francesco forgot about it.  However, during a procession in honor of an image of Our Lady of Sorrows, Francesco finally felt strongly the calling to be a religious.  He took off for a Passionist house and novitiate on the eve of his engagement.

When Francesco made his vows he was given the name in religion of Gabriel adding of Our Lady of Sorrows.  Gabriel made a special promise to spread devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows. His writings are imbued with this devotion and a special focus on the Passion of the Lord.  He was known for his perfect observance of the rule of the Passionists.

While still young was contracted tuberculosis.  He remained always in good spirits, never quitting his harsh mortifications however.  Before he could be ordained a priest, he died embracing an image of Our Lady of Sorrows.

Gabriel was canonized by Pope Benedict XV 1920 and declared him patron of Catholic youth. In 1959, Pope John XXIII named him the patron of the Abruzzi region, where he spent the last two years of his earthly life. His is also invoked by seminarians and novices.

St. Gemma Galgani attributed to St. Gabriel the cure which led her also to her vocation as a Passionist.

Let us look at his Collect from the 1962 Missale Romanum.


Deus, qui beatum Gabrielem dulcissimae Matris tuae dolores assidue recolere docuisti, ac per illam sanctitatis et miraculorum gloria sublimasti: da nobis, eius intercessione et exemplo; ita Genetricis tuae consociari fletibus, ut materna eiusdem protectione salvemur.


O God, who taught blessed Gabriel to reflect constantly upon the sorrows of Your most sweet Mother, and through her raised him on high by the glory of holiness and miracles: grant us, by his intercession and example; so to be joined to the tears of Your Mother, that we may be saved by her maternal protection.

Now here is the politically incorrect part of the story.  

From the Possenti Society:

In 1860, soldiers from Garibaldi entered the mountain village of Isola, Italy. They began to burn and pillage the town, terrorizing its inhabitants.

Possenti, with his seminary rector’s permission, walked into the center of town, unarmed, to face the terrorists. One of the soldiers was dragging off a young woman he intended to rape when he saw Possenti and made a snickering remark about such a young monk being all alone.

Possenti quickly grabbed the soldier’s revolver from his belt and ordered the marauder to release the woman. The startled soldier complied, as Possenti grabbed the revolver of another soldier who came by. Hearing the commotion, the rest of the soldiers came running in Possenti’s direction, determined to overcome the rebellious monk.

At that moment a small lizard ran across the road between Possenti and the soldiers. When the lizard briefly paused, Possenti took careful aim and struck the lizard with one shot. Turning his two handguns on the approaching soldiers, Possenti commanded them to drop their weapons. Having seen his handiwork with a pistol, the soldiers complied. Possenti ordered them to put out the fires they had set, and upon finishing, marched the whole lot out of town, ordering them never to return. The grateful townspeople escorted Possenti in triumphant procession back to the seminary, thereafter referring to him as “the Savior of Isola”.

Thus, some consider him to be the patron of shooters and handgun users.  For good reason.

Thus endeth the lesson.

And… I encourage all you women and men out there to get lots of training and practice, whether or not you decide to get a concealed carry weapon permit.  Ask St. Gabriel to help you in the process.

Be ready for when “Garibaldi’s” troops show up and keep repeating what the saint said:

“I want to break my own will into pieces, I want to do God’s Holy will, not my own. May the most adorable, most lovable, most perfect will of God always be done.”

St. Gabriel

7 votes, 5.00 avg. rating (98% score)
Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Saints: Stories & Symbols | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

How US school lunches now compare to other countries

Since it’s Friday in Lent, here’s a food post.

There is a great post that compares the school lunches in different countries.  The point is to show what FLOTUS has done to children in these USA.


USA (post Michelle Obama):

lunch 01




lunch 02




lunch 03



lunch 04

See the rest of them over there.

14 votes, 3.71 avg. rating (74% score)
Posted in Liberals, Pò sì jiù, You must be joking! | Tagged , | 19 Comments

LENTCAzT 10: Ember Friday of the 1st Week of Lent

LENTCAzT15Today is Friday of the 1st Week of Lent. Today is an Ember Day.


How long has it been?

Here is another 5 minute daily podcast for Lent.  They are intended to give you a small boost every day, a little encouragement in your own use of this holy season.


I am providing these again this year especially in gratitude to benefactors who help me and this blog.

And.. don’t forget…


Click me!

5 votes, 4.20 avg. rating (84% score)
Posted in LENTCAzT, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, PODCAzT, Saints: Stories & Symbols | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment


This is what the barbarians are doing in Mosul.

Ladies and Gentleman, the ISIS iteration of the Religion of Peace.


Sts. Nunilo and Alodia, pray for us.
St. Lawrence of Brindisi, pray for us.

4 votes, 2.75 avg. rating (60% score)
Posted in The Religion of Peace | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Look! DOWN from the sky!

This is simply too cool not to share. Biretta tip to AC who sent the link. o{]:¬)

Broadcast live streaming video on Ustream

NASA Now Streaming Live HD Camera Views of Earth from Space (Video)

Daydreaming about being an astronaut just got a whole lot easier.

NASA is now live-streaming views of Earth from space captured by four commercial high-definition video cameras that were installed on the exterior of the International Space Station last month. The project, known as the High Definition Earth Viewing (HDEV) experiment, aims to test how cameras perform in the space environment. You can see the live HD views of Earth from space above.

“The cameras are enclosed in a temperature-specific housing and are exposed to the harsh radiation of space,” NASA officials write in an online description of the HDEV experiment. “Analysis of the effect of space on the video quality, over the time HDEV is operational, may help engineers decide which cameras are the best types to use on future missions.

Some of the cameras’ components were designed by high school students as part of the High Schools United with NASA to Create Hardware, according to a NASA description of the experiment. The students are also operating the experiment.

You can follow NASA’s stream directly here: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/iss-hdev-payload. If the screen is black, don’t worry — the space station is likely just on Earth’s night side. (The station completes one orbit every 90 minutes, so you won’t have to wait too long for our gorgeous planet to roll into view once again.)

The webcast of HD Earth video feed is also on Space.com, and will be accompanied by other live space broadcasts as events warrant.


Read the rest there.

5 votes, 5.00 avg. rating (97% score)
Posted in Just Too Cool, Look! Up in the sky! | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Camille Paglia interviewed. Great stuff on feminists, the Irish influence, more.

Over at Amerika Magazine‘s single redeeming feature there is a fascinating interview with a fascinating  gal, Camille Paglia.  Here are a couple samples. I think she’s dead wrong about a whole raft of things, but a) she’s honest and b) she’s a fine wordsmith.  She’s one of those figures like Oriana Fallaci who never disappoints.

My emphases and comments:

Q: In your view, what’s wrong with American feminism today, and what can it do to improve?

PAGLIA: After the great victory won by my insurgent, pro-sex, pro-fashion wing of feminism in the 1990s, American and British feminism has amazingly collapsed backward again into whining, narcissistic victimology. [Rem acu tetigit!] As in the hoary old days of Gloria Steinem and her Stalinist cohorts, we are endlessly subjected to the hackneyed scenario of history as a toxic wasteland of vicious male oppression and gruesome female suffering. College campuses are hysterically portrayed as rape extravaganzas where women are helpless fluffs with no control over their own choices and behavior. I am an equal opportunity feminist: that is, I call for the removal of all barriers to women’s advance in the professional and political realms.  However, I oppose special protections for women, which I reject as demeaning and infantilizing. [Do I hear an “Amen!”?] My principal demand (as I have been repeating for nearly 25 years) is for colleges to confine themselves to education and to cease their tyrannical surveillance of students’ social lives.  [Refreshing.] If a real crime is committed, it must be reported to the police. College officials and committees have neither the expertise nor the legal right to be conducting investigations into he said/she said campus dating fiascos. Too many of today’s young feminists seem to want hovering, paternalistic authority figures to protect and soothe them, an attitude I regard as servile, reactionary and glaringly bourgeois. The world can never be made totally safe for anyone, male or female: there will always be sociopaths and psychotics impervious to social controls. I call my system “street-smart feminism”: there is no substitute for wary vigilance and personal responsibility.  [I could read her all day.  Her comment also reminds me of the LCWR and the wywyn’s ordination crowd: they seem to crave approval from men.]


Q: You grew up as an Italian-American Catholic, but seemed to identify more strongly with the pagan elements of Catholic art and culture than with the church’s doctrines. What caused you to fall away from the Catholic Church?

PAGLIA: Italian Catholicism remains my deepest identity—in the same way that many secular Jews feel a strong cultural bond with Judaism. Over time I realized—and this became a main premise of my first book, Sexual Personae (based on my doctoral dissertation at Yale)—that what had always fascinated me in Italian Catholicism was its pagan residue. I loved the cult of saints, the bejeweled ceremonialism, the eerie litanies of Mary—all the things, in other words, that Martin Luther and the other Protestant reformers rightly condemned as medieval Romanist intrusions into primitive Christianity. [I’m not sure that’s fair… but this is a fast interview, but a scholarly article.] It’s no coincidence that my Halloween costume in first grade was a Roman soldier, modeled on the legionnaires’ uniforms I admired in the Stations of the Cross on the church walls. Christ’s story had very little interest for me—except for the Magi, whose opulent Babylonian costumes I adored! My baptismal church, St. Anthony of Padua in Endicott, New York, was a dazzling yellow-brick, Italian-style building with gorgeous stained-glass windows and life-size polychrome statues, which were the first works of art I ever saw.

[NB] After my parents moved to Syracuse, however, I was progressively stuck with far blander churches and less ethnic congregations. Irish Catholicism began to dominate—a completely different brand, with its lesser visual sense and its tendency toward brooding guilt and ranting fanaticism.  [Ahhh… the gift that keeps on giving…] I suspect that the nun who finally alienated me from the church must have been Irish! [That smacks of the truth, don’t it.] It was in religious education class (for which Catholic students were released from public school on Thursday afternoons), held on that occasion in the back pews of the church. I asked the nun what still seems to me a perfectly reasonable and intriguing question: if God is all-forgiving, will he ever forgive Satan? The nun’s reaction was stunning: she turned beet red and began screaming at me in front of everyone. That was when I concluded there was no room in the Catholic Church of that time for an inquiring mind. [Frankly, I expected better than that from someone as smart as Paglia.  Anyone who decides that there is not intellectual life in the Church because of some nitwit nun, needs to go back and rethink things.  I readily admit, however, that childhood experiences are visceral and lasting.]

The young Jesuit who is doing this series of interviews, Sean Salai, SJ, is highly to be commended for the range of people and good questions he asks.  I’m still mad at him, rather at his overloads, for what happened with my interview… but… hey… that’s how this internet goes!

I sure would enjoy having lunch with Camille Paglia. I’ll bet the conversation would be marvelous.

BTW… at the end of the interview, Paglia comments on Pope Francis.

13 votes, 4.08 avg. rating (81% score)
Posted in The Drill | Tagged , , , | 22 Comments

28 Feb Card. Dolan @ Holy Innocents – Manhattan – Mass for Fr. Groeschel & Book Club

I received this great news:

1) Mass by Cardinal Dolan

His Eminence, Timothy Cardinal Dolan, Archbishop of the New York, will visit the Church of the Holy Innocents this coming Saturday, February 28, 2015. On that day, at 10AM, His Eminence will celebrate a Mass for the Dead (ordinary form) for Fr. Benedict Groeschel.

The usual volunteer/dedicated servers from Holy Innocents will serve this Mass. The volunteer choir of Holy Innocents (Vox in Rama) will provide the music.

Please, spread the word among those who used to take part in Fr. Groeschel’s talks at Holy Innocents on third Saturdays and whoever else would like to attend this Mass for him.

After the Mass, there will be a reception in the Holy Innocents Hall downstairs.

2) The Holy Innocents Book Club

The Holy Innocents’ Book Club will meet on Tuesday, March 17th, 2015 after the 6pm traditional Mass and it will meet on the 3rd Tuesday of each month thereafter. [Yet another initiative at this vibrant midtown parish.]

Click me!

The group will discuss the book Remaining in the Truth of Christ, which is the response of 5 Cardinals (including Cardinal Burke) and 4 other scholars to Cardinal Kasper’s call for allowing divorced and civilly remarried Catholics to receive Holy Communion.

The book concludes that the perennial practice of the Catholic Church – as supported by both Biblical and patristic sources, as well as the immemorial Tradition of the Church – of not allowing any illicit/invalid unions/marriages after divorce/separation and of not allowing Holy Communion to those in illicit/invalid unions must be preserved.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Osvaldo Calvario (moderator): oswald {DOT} calvario  {AT} gmail {DOT} com or (650)-213-6167 (mobile).

5 votes, 4.20 avg. rating (84% score)
Posted in Events, The Campus Telephone Pole | 1 Comment

SYNODGATE: A canonist weighs in – Fr. Z gives advice

The esteemed canonist Ed Peters has something to say about #Synodgate – the heist of the Five Cardinals Book™ from the mailboxes of participants at last October’s Synod on the Family. (HERE)

Thus, Peters:

It was worse than a crime—it was a blunder

There are credible reports that Lorenzo Cardinal Baldisseri, head of the secretariat for the Synod of Bishops, ordered the confiscation of pro-marriage materials legally mailed to synod participants last October. In addition to whatever international and/or Vatican City State laws might have been violated thereby, and besides the possibility of the violation of Canon 1389 (abuse of ecclesiastical office), [!] this action, if indeed it was taken by ranking prelate, offends at a level that will, I suggest, haunt Church staffers for years to come.

I cannot count the number of times over the decades that I have heard good Catholics, concerned for this problem or that in the Church, despair of having their voice heard as follows: “Why should I bother writing to the bishop? Someone on his staff will not like my letter and make sure it never gets to him.”  [Exactly.  This is a common lament.  However…]

I have many, many times, assured Catholics that such “mail-filtering” was a myth and that, in my experience, bishops see every letter addressed to them. They don’t always answer, I admit, but they do see it. Who knows, perhaps a few Catholic decided to write to their bishops after all, upon my comments.

Now, the myth of ecclesiastics filtering mail that they don’t want others to see has been given a new lease on life. We will be decades living the story down. Put another way, this stunt, assuming it happened as it seems to have happened, was worse than a crime—it was a blunder.

The truth of this matter needs to come out, and, if the story is false, it needs to be contradicted if only for the common good; if it’s true, consequences need to come. Quickly.

I agree with Peters that, at least in dioceses, it would be a rare thing indeed for mail to a bishop to be so filtered.  Sure, a good secretary or executive assistant will keep some of the truly knuckle-head stuff of his boss’s desk.  But, mail gets through.

If you write… don’t be a knuckle-head.  Don’t write unhinged ravings that will get your letter sent to the circular file.

I have a few TIPS for writing to ecclesiastical officials.  Adapt these to your circumstances and you’ll have a greater chance of a good hearing.

Free tip: Don’t use a single exclamation point.

20 votes, 4.85 avg. rating (96% score)
Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Linking Back, Synod | Tagged , , , , | 24 Comments