Blood Moon, the End of the World, and You

On 4 April we will see the THIRD BLOOD MOON OF THE TETRAD!

In time for the Vigil.

The next total lunar eclipse, the 4th Blood moon of the Tetrad, will be 28 September.



But wait… there’s more… and this is no April Fool’s joke.

The April eclipse will coincide with Passover. The September eclipse will coincide with Tabernacles, Sukkoth.

Did you know that there is a time cycle called a tzolkinex?

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Posted in Global Killer Asteroid Questions, Lighter fare, Look! Up in the sky! | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

Very Cool Blue Angels Video

I had to share this video with you.

This video reminds me of my days as a Navy pilot, before my all too short astronaut career. These days I don’t experience the same level of g-forces during the consecration. And I miss the reflective visor. Un-liturgical.

It’s helps with versus populum Masses, though.

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Whan That Aprille Day 2015

Chaucer ipadI would like to remind the readership that “Whan That Aprille Day 2015″ is upon us.

For more on this distinguished day see Geoffrey Chaucer Hath a Blog.

Maken Melodye on Whan That Aprille Day 2015


Yt doth fill my litel herte wyth gret happinesse to invyte yow to the seconde yeare of a moost blisful and plesinge event.

On the first daye of Aprille, lat us make tyme to take joye yn alle langages that are yclept ‘old,’ or ‘middel,’ or ‘auncient,’ or ‘archaic,’ or, alas, even ‘dead.’

Thys feest ys yclept ‘Whan That Aprille Day.’ For thys yeare, ‘Whan That Aprille Day 15.’

Ich do invyte yow to joyne me yn a celebracioun across the entyre globe of the erthe. Yn thys celebracioun we shal reade of oold bokes yn sondrye oold tonges. We shal singe olde songes. We shal playe olde playes. Eny oold tonge will do, and eny maner of readinge. All are welcome. We shal make merrye yn the magical dreamscape of ‘social media,’ and eke, yf ye kan do yt, yn the ‘real worlde’ too.

Ye maye, paraventure, wisshe to reade from the beginning of my Tales of Caunterburye, but ye maye also wisshe to reade of eny oothir boke or texte or scroll or manuscript that ye love. Ye maye even reade the poetrye of John Gower yf that ys yower thinge.

What are sum wayes to celebrate Whan That Aprille Daye?

Gentil frendes, yf yt wolde plese yow to celebrate Whan That Aprille Daye 2015, ye koude…

• Counte downe to Whan That Aprille Daye wyth the good folke of TEAMS Middel Englisshe Textes on twytter: @METS_Texts

• Maken a video of yowerself readinge (or singinge! or actinge!) and share yt on the grete webbe of the internette.

• Make sum maner of cake or pastrye wyth oold wordes upon yt, and feest upon yt wyth good folke and share pictures of yower festivitee.

• Yf ye be bold, ye maye wisshe to share yower readinge yn publique, yn a slam of poesye or a nighte of open mic.

• Yf ye worke wyth an organisatioun or scole, ye maye wisshe to plan sum maner of event, large or smal, to share writinge yn oold langages.

• And for maximum Aprillenesse, marke all tweetes and poostes wyth the hashtagge #whanthataprilleday15

What ys the poynte of Whan That Aprille Daye?


See the rest there.


In observance of Whan That Aprille Day 2015, here is a helpful video so that you, too, can speak a little Middle English.

Whan that Aprille with his shoures sote
The droghte of Marche hath perced to the rote,
And bathed every veyne in swich licour,
Of which vertu engendred is the flour;
Whan Zephirus eek with his swete breeth
Inspired hath in every holt and heeth
The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne
Hath in the Ram his halfe cours y-ronne,
And smale fowles maken melodye,
That slepen al the night with open yë,
(So priketh hem nature in hir corages):
Than longen folk to goon on pilgrimages
(And palmers for to seken straunge strondes)
To ferne halwes, couthe in sondry londes;
And specially, from every shires ende
Of Engelond, to Caunterbury they wende,
The holy blisful martir for to seke,
That hem hath holpen, whan that they were seke.

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LENTCAzT 43: Spy Wednesday of Holy Week


Today is Spy Wednesday of Holy Week.


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.

Music today from the marvelous disk for Holy Week from St. John Cantius.

Click to buy!

You can also get a FREE copy of the CD. Learn how by clicking HERE.

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OCTOBER 2015: Summorum Pontificum Pilgrimage


I want to bring to your attention the upcoming annual Summorum Pontificum pilgrimage to Rome in October.   It is handled by Orbis Catholicus and my friend John Sonnen.  I will be going.

19-29 October.  (My birthday will be in Rome!)

The pilgrimage will be after the close of the Synod, so we wouldn’t have to meet all those… you know.

I was with the pilgrimage last year and things went pretty well.  I am pretty sure they will be even better this year.

This year, instead of going to Orvieto for a day trip we are going to go to Norcia!  (Hint: Benedictines, sausage and BEER)

BTW.. it was in the context of last year’s trip that, during the visit to the Swiss Guards’ barracks, I started planning the Breastplate Project.  I suspect that we will be warmly received by them this year.

Also, we attended a Pontifical Mass with Card. Burke.


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Tolerance is over

cultural revolution 02The world is going nuts. I have often felt a bit like Cassandra, but … Cassandra was right.

Here is another take.

From the pen of John Zmirak at The Stream with my emphases and comments:

The expected Supreme Court decision imposing on 50 states an entirely newunderstanding of marriage, and the frenzy of hatred that gay activists have stoked against Indiana for trying to shelter religious believers from crippling lawsuits should wake us to a cold and stark reality: The age of tolerance in America is vanishing before your eyes. The question is how Christians and other people of faith and good will are going to respond.

Let’s break this down in stark and simple terms: Not only were gay activists willing to overturn an act of Congress (the Defense of Marriage Act) on spurious grounds; they also wish to force their libertine idea of marriage onto voters in each of the 50 states, voiding dozens of laws on an issue that has always rested with the states. [So, it is not just an issue of sodomy.  This is a constitutional issue.]

Not satisfied with that, these activists want the full force of the regulatory state to compel every single American to affirm and accept the delusion of same-sex “marriage,” under the same civil and criminal penalties that now forbid discrimination by race. [BUT… the “gay” thing is nothing like the civil rights issues of the 60’s.  Comparing the “gay” thing and race is like comparing apples and carrots.] A famous case was a 70-year-old Christian florist who declined to decorate a gay wedding, and was crushed by a successful lawsuit and the full force of the ACLU’s legal team. She was one of the Brave New Law’s first victims. She will be far from the last.  [That’s for sure.]

These activists use the power of city governments (as in San Francisco) to try to intimidate isolated Catholic schools into abandoning Christian teaching on sexual ethics. Such zealots corrupt the academic authorities who grant accreditation in order to financially cripple schools such as Gordon College that maintain Christian “morals” clauses as part of their hiring policies.

cultural revolution 04Those who defend the reality of marriage, including even unbelievers who defend freedom of religion and association, are not simply wrong — they are “bigots” and “haters” who deserve to be fined, boycotted and bankrupted; [Crucifige! Crucifige eum!] to lose their jobs like Brendan Eich, the ex-CEO of Mozilla, and face financial ruin — as Elton John hopes to break Dolce & Gabbana, and [follow the trajectory] as Apple CEO Tim Cook hopes to break the entire State of Indiana. Politicians are joining in, with the Connecticut governor, and Seattle and San Francisco mayors, banning official travel to Indiana.  [It goes from bakers and florists, to schools to entire states.  What’s next?]

As Austin Ruse points out, states such as Indiana are not giving Christians a pass to broadly discriminate against gays. Such religious freedom laws “deal with the very narrow question of whether vendors can be forced by the state to participate in religious ceremonies that violate their own religious consciences.

Given the fanatical response to a modest bill virtually identical to a federal law upheld by courts and bills on the books in twenty other states, [QUAERITUR…] how long before the call comes out for the “bigots” to be imprisoned? The First Amendment won’t protect us, if leaders like Hillary Clinton have their way; in public statements she followed President Obama in replacing the Constitution’s “free exercise” with “freedom of worship.”

The implicit message shouldn’t be missed: Say what you want in church for an hour every Sunday, but the rest of the week belongs to us.Your homophobic beliefs deserve no more protection than the religious use of peyote.


Get your heads into that mental place where you will be able to face the persecution that is coming.  You will be vilified, in especially venomous ways, even within the Church by catholics seeking to twist the Church into an instrument of social re-engineering.

cultural revolution 03

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Foot washing on Holy Thursday. Wherein Fr. Z rants.

In the Roman Rite, the washing of feet on Holy Thursday is an option.  It may be left out without disturbing the integrity of the Holy Thursday Mass of the Last Supper (otherwise, it wouldn’t be a legitimate option).

Watch now as all sorts of people demand that bishops and priests violate the law because of what His Holiness Pope Francis did last year and plans to do this year.  Watch as all manner of clerics hide behind the Pope when they choose openly to break the law and violate their promise to uphold the Church’s laws.

The problem with that is, liturgical law is real law.  It must be obeyed.

The Church’s liturgical law is not ambiguous: only males can be chosen for this optional rite, and they should be men: viri selecti.  Vir means “man”.   Vir cannot, period, mean a female.  And despite what Facebook says, there are two sexes, not dozens.  Also, you really don’t get to choose which you are.  Vir is male.

Also, lest it go unsaid, I am not speciesist, but the Church still limits this foot-washing rite to human beings.

Next, the Pope, who is the Church’s Legislator, can do A, B or C as it pleaseth him to do.  If he wants to set aside the law, so be it.

The rest of us, however, are obligedto obey the law.  The ordained made promises at ordination to obey the Church’s laws.

So, we have a couple choices when it comes to the foot-washing rite (the “Mandatum” or “Command” – whence the word Maundy): don’t do the rite, or do the rite properly.

Two main excuses are offered in defense of the abuse of washing the feet of women.

The first excuse is that of “hospitality”.  “Hospitality” suggests women must be “included”.  Never mind that Mass isn’t that sort of “meal”.  In the USA some might obtusely cite a note – having no canonical authority – from the (then) NCCB’s Committee on Liturgy in 1987 which uses this “hospitality” argument.

The second excuse is that of “inclusive” language, to which some of a certain age still cling.  Keep in mind that quite a few clerics, of a certain age, haven’t really updated themselves by looking at the most recent edition of the Roman Missal, in English much less in Latin.  They are snug in their fading memories that the English words in the now long-obsolete ICEL Sacramentary, “men” and “man”, couldn’t possibly mean “males”!  That would be sexist!  Again, Latin “vir” means “male”.

To repeat, when the Pope decides to derogate for himself from the liturgical law,  that derogation doesn’t abolish the law for everyone else.  The law remains.

We priests – and bishops – must obey the liturgical law which we do not have the authority to break or change.

The Church is not lawless.  The Church is not merely a display case for people’s passing whims and changing fashions.

When and if the Holy Father wants the law to change for everyone, he will make sure that it is changed for everyone in the proper way and he will let everyone in the world know about it.  The Holy Father knows how to change laws and promulgate the changes.  Doing something in private on his own doesn’t change the law.

Until the Roman Pontiff changes the law, the law stands.

Men only, or no foot washing at all.  Those are the two legitimate options.

Fathers, if you are afraid of the women in your parish, just opt out of the foot washing rite entirely.  It is only an option.  Fathers, if you don’t want the headaches and complaints and threats and tears and anger and hate-mail and voice-mail and glares and accusations, just say “no” to the foot washing option.   Let the Mass be the Mass without the controversy.  You are not obliged to violate the law and your promises.

The moderation queue is on.  I’ll let quite a few stack up so that you are, initially at least, responding to the issue rather than to each other.  Patience.

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Spem in allium

Some garlicky notes for this Holy Week.

First, at BBC an ancient recipe made new.

1,000-year-old onion and garlic eye remedy kills MRSA

A 1,000-year-old treatment for eye infections could hold the key to killing antibiotic-resistant superbugs, experts have said.
Scientists recreated a 9th Century Anglo-Saxon remedy using onion, garlic and part of a cow’s stomach.
They were “astonished” to find it almost completely wiped out methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, otherwise known as MRSA.
Their findings will be presented at a national microbiology conference.
The remedy was found in Bald’s Leechbook – an old English manuscript containing instructions on various treatments held in the British Library.
Anglo-Saxon expert Dr Christina Lee, from the University of Nottingham, translated the recipe for an “eye salve”, which includes garlic, onion or leeks, wine and cow bile.
Experts from the university’s microbiology team recreated the remedy and then tested it on large cultures of MRSA.

Oh those medieval types were soooo stupid.

And now from the great blog Pass The Garum an even more ancient recipe made new.

Moretum – Cheese, Herb and Garlic Spread

Moretum is a cheese, garlic, and herb spread mentioned in a wonderful little poem, also called Moretum, allegedly by Virgil. The poem tells us about the farmer Symilus and his morning meal. Waking up early, he lights his lamp and visits his grain stores. After spending some time milling the grain, Symilus has just enough flour to bake a loaf of bread. However, the farmer soon notices that he has no meat, and worries that the bread might not be tasty enough on its own, so he sets about making some moretum to go with it. Seeing as our bread could use a little lift, I’m going to follow this Roman farmer’s example and make some of this cheese spread. The whole poem, which really is worth a read, can be found by clicking here. It’s too long to post in full, so I’ve summarised the important bits here:

Symilus gathers four heads of garlic (!), celery, parsley, rue, and coriander seeds.
He grinds the garlic in his mortar and pestle, and adds salt and cheese.
He then adds the celery, rue, parsley, and coriander seeds.
The smell is so strong that it makes his eyes water!
Finally, he adds some olive oil and vinegar, finishes off the mixture, and slaps some on his freshly baked bread.

So, what to make of this? Well for one there is far too much garlic; Symilus might have been able to work alone in his field without his breath offending anyone, but most of us don’t have that luxury. I’ve toned it down a bit and used just half a clove. Secondly, Virgil mentions a bitter herb called ‘rue’ which I don’t have access to at the minute, so that’s been left out.


You’ll have to go over there to see the recipe. I have to try this stuff.  Maybe tomorrow.

I need some rue, and not from a bottle of grappa.

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LENTCAzT 42: Tuesday of Holy Week – UPDATED


UPDATED – Sorry about that!  Forgot to upload the audio! 

Today is Tuesday of Holy Week.


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.

Music today from the marvelous disk for Holy Week from St. John Cantius.

Click to buy!

You can also get a FREE copy of the CD. Learn how by clicking HERE.

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ASK FATHER: Priest’s blessings by telephone

From a reader…


I know of a priest who imparts blessings over the telephone. Is this valid?

The Holy Father has the authority to impart a blessing by means of electronic transmission. The faithful, who are unable to be present where the Holy Father imparts, for example, the “urbi et orbi” blessing, may receive the indulgence if they devotedly follow the rites through TV or radio while the rite is being performed.

Other than that, I think that imparting and receiving a priestly blessing requires some form of physical presence.

Of course there is the more casual sort of way of blessing someone, to invoke God’s favor on people.  In that case, there is no problem at all.

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