The blood of San Gennaro liquefied!

Neapolitans hold their breath on the Feast of the great patron San Gennaro, St. Januarius.  There is a relic of dry blood which, as the Cardinal Archbishop moves the reliquary, liqufies and visibly flows again.  When it doesn’t… bad things happen, such as earthquakes.

This year, just hours ago, the blood of San Gennaro liquified again.

Here is a video:

A news account with photos HERE

St. Alphonus de Liguori wrote in Victory of the Martyrs:

The Neapolitans honor this saint as the principal patron of their city and nation, and the Lord himself has continued to honor him, by allowing many miracles to be wrought through his intercession, particularly when the frightful eruptions of Mount Vesuvius have threatened the city of Naples with utter destruction. While the relics of St. Januarius were being brought in procession towards this terrific volcano, the torrents of lava and liquid fire which it emitted have ceased, or turned their course from the city. But the most stupendous miracle, and that which is greatly celebrated in the church, is the liquefying and boiling up of this blessed martyr’s blood whenever the vials are brought in sight of his head. This miracle is renewed many times in the year, in presence of all who desire to witness it; yet some heretics have endeavored to throw a doubt upon its genuineness, by frivolous and incoherent explanations; but no one can deny the effect to be miraculous, unless he be prepared to question the evidence of his senses.

A better video, but from last year:

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Posted in Just Too Cool, Saints: Stories & Symbols | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Irish bishop caves under pressure, won’t ordain only male deacons

Over at Crisis I saw that there is a piece by the esteemed Anthony Esolen called The Serpents Return to the Irish. That seems to be the case not only in these USA but also in the “old country” itself.

I saw this at Rev. Mr. Kandra’s blog, Deacon’s Bench:

Irish bishop bows to pressure, says he will postpone introduction of permanent deacons


Protests over the proposed introduction of a male-only lay ministry [oops!] in the Catholic diocese of Killaloe have forced the local bishop to back down and postpone the move.

In a letter read out in parishes on Sunday, Bishop Kieran O’Reilly acknowledged the concerns raised by lay women and groups in the western diocese about the permanent diaconate. [permanent deacons are not lay men.  They are clerics.]

The move came after Kathleen McDonnell, a member a parish pastoral council in west Clare, had criticised the move to set up the men-only lay ministry and had called on the diocese to create a ministry for all.  [Good grief.]

It also provoked a poster campaign opposing the new ministry which appeared on parish noticeboards across the diocese.

It comes as over half of Killaloe’s 82 priests are now aged 66 or older and between them they minister to 56 parishes across Co Clare as well as parts of Offaly, Laois, Tipperary and Limerick.

In his letter, Bishop O’Reilly told his flock that in light of the conversations held over the past weeks: “I will not now proceed with the introduction of the permanent diaconate at this time in the diocese.” [He caved in?  Only men can be ordained, so let's not have anyone ordained.]

It is understood that a number of men had already put themselves forward for consideration as candidates for training to become deacons.


Check out the rest over there.

His smacks of what happened in the Diocese of Saginaw.  The late Bishop Untener didn’t want to ordain men until he could also ordain women.  Guess what that did to vocations.

In my opinion, the ordination of Permanent Deacons is not solution to the lack of priests, but it’s not nothing.  I don’t mean that “not nothing” to be dismissive, but the fact is that deacons cannot say Mass, absolve sins or anoint.

But to buckle under this ridiculous protest?  Really?

What is going on when bishops caved in to protest pressure like this?

Pray for our bishops, friends.

Moderation queue is ON.

Posted in Liberals, Our Catholic Identity, You must be joking! | 14 Comments

¡Hagan lío! TLM now more than ever!

In the midst of disorienting news, here is orienting news.

I saw this on the Twitter feed of Fr. Nathan Siray, @frnathansiray:

“First of many…”.  It warms the cockles of my beady-black heart.

Fr. Z kudos.

Fathers, we are living in interesting times.  The times are going to become interesting-er yet.

It is time for you to learn the Extraordinary Form.  Just learn it.  Then say it.

What you do will have a terrific knock-on effect.  Do not underestimate it.

Press forward.


Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Brick by Brick, Fr. Z KUDOS, Hard-Identity Catholicism, Just Too Cool, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Mail from priests, New Evangelization, Our Catholic Identity, Priests and Priesthood, SUMMORUM PONTIFICUM, The Coming Storm, The future and our choices, ¡Hagan lío! | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Up and away! St. Joseph of Cupertino

I had to smile today at the Collect for the Feast of St. Joseph of Cupertino in the 1962MR.

Deus, qui ad unigenitum Filium tuum exaltatum a terra omnia trahere disposuisti: perfice propitius; ut meritis et exemplo seraphici Confessoris tui Iosephi supra terrenas omnes cupiditates elevati, ad eum pervenire mereamur:….


O God, who disposed to draw all things to Your Son, raised up from the earth, graciously bring about that we, having been lifted up above all earthly desires by the merits and example of Your seraph-like Confessor Joseph, may be made worthy to reach all the way to Him.

Someone had a holy sense of humor.

Posted in Lighter fare, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Saints: Stories & Symbols, WDTPRS | Tagged | 9 Comments


Posts roll off the front page here pretty quickly.  Here are some links to recent offerings.

First and foremost:


Help each other out.

And now…

And now, my usual paragraph of thanking donors and people who have sent things from my wishlists… well… I haven’t updated for a few days.  I’ve been really busy.  However, THANKS.  After posting this, I’ll start to update and send out some thank you notes.

However, I will say Mass for my the intention of benefactors on 20 Sept, Saturday.  I include those of you who have subscribed to make an monthly donation, who make an occasional donation, or who send items, Kindle books, etc.  I don’t always get a slip with the name of the person who sent items, but God knows you and I keep you in mind, whoever you are.

DY and GS, you are always on my list.

Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Leave a comment

HAM RADIO stuff again: Echolink QSL request by RADIOGRAM.

I’ll put on my Ham hat for a moment to share some news and ask advice from my virtual Elmers.

I posted a while back about Echolink HERE and HERE.  Alas, we haven’t done anything with this yet.  Should we schedule a time?

I just received a “Radiogram” by snail-mail.  Here is a scan.

I am not sure what to do with this, but I’d like to do something.  It would be my first QSL.

What is a “Radiogram”? It’s sort of a telegram that comes via post, through the help of volunteers. It is a plain text message, along with metadata (headers). It is launched into a traffic net by a ham operator and then relayed to another ham who volunteers to deliver it. In this case, it was tucked into a regular envelope and mailed from a place nearby to where I live in the Steam Pipe Trunk Distribution Venue.

Kinda cool, really, both the tech and the human interaction. Very cool, as a matter of fact. My thanks go out to everyone who helped.

Now… I have to figure out what to do!


Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Ham Radio, Just Too Cool | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Card. Kasper accused other Cardinals of attacking the Pope

Card. Kasper, the proponent of the “tolerated by not accepted” solution, has been reacting all over the Italian secular press today.  He is “surprised” at the appearance of the “Five Cardinals” Book™.

His Eminence is flummoxed that he should be taken to task for what he has publicly proposed.

In English you can read at CNS:

“None of my brother cardinals has ever spoken with me,” the cardinal (Kasper) said. “I, on the other hand, have spoken twice with the Holy Father. I arranged everything with him. He was in agreement. What can a cardinal do but stand with the pope? I am not the target, the target is another.”
Asked if the target was Pope Francis, the cardinal replied: “Probably yes.”

This is untrue.

I have seen the book. It was sent to me by the publisher. What Kasper said is untrue. The only way in which His Holiness is mentioned in the book is favorably. The Pope is praised.

Noooo…. the target is Card. Kasper. And he knows it. That’s why he is hiding behind the Holy Father’s skirts.

Specifically, the Pope is praised for his talk to the International Theological Commission when he reminded them that sensus fidelium had nothing to do with opinion polls. Francis is cited in the book, when he reiterated in April 2014 to the bishops from South Africa, Botswana and Swaziland that marriage is between one man and one woman and it is indissoluble. Francis in that same address praised St. John Paul’s Familiaris consortio as the basis for marriage instruction in these African countries.

The “Five Cardinals” Book™, if it is anti-Kasper at all, can only be described as anti-Kasper Lite.

If you want something weighs in more heavily, in a way directed far more pointedly at Card. Kasper by name, try the other new book coming out from Ignatius on marriage, divorce and Communion called The Gospel of the Family: Going Beyond Cardinal Kasper’s Proposal in the Debate on Marriage, Civil Re-Marriage and Communion in the Church by J. J. Pérez-Soba and S. Kampowski with a foreward by Card. Pell.

Click to PRE-ORDER

I am reading this book now.

Here, for your edification, is a quote from Pell’s foreward:

This book is important for many reasons. A courteous, informed, and rigorous discussion, indeed debate, is needed especially for the coming months to defend the Christian and Catholic tradition of monogamous, indissoluble marriage — focusing on the central elements of the challenges facing marriage and the family, rather than being distracted into a counterproductive and futile search for short-term consolations.

The health of an organization can be gauged by observing the amount of time and energy devoted to the discussion of various topics. Healthy communities do not spend most of their energies on peripheral issues, and unfortunately the number of divorced and remarried Catholics who feel they should be allowed to receive Holy Communion is very small indeed.

The pressures for this change are centered mainly in some European churches, where churchgoing is low and an increasing number of divorcees are choosing not to remarry. The issue is seen by both friends and foes of the Catholic tradition as a symbol — a prize in the clash between what remains of Christendom in Europe and an aggressive neo-paganism. Every opponent of Christianity wants the Church to capitulate on this issue.

Both sides in this discussion appeal to Christian criteria, and everyone is dismayed by the amount of suffering caused to spouses and children by marriage breakups. What help can and should the Catholic Church offer?

Some see the primary task of the Church as providing lifeboats for those who have been shipwrecked by divorce. [Kasper uses this image... "naufragio... zattera"]

And lifeboats should be available for all, especially for those tragic innocent parties. But which way should the lifeboats be headed? Toward the rocks or the marshes, or to a safe port, which can only be reached with difficulty? Others see an even more important task for the Church in providing leadership and good maps to diminish the number of shipwrecks. Both tasks are necessary, but how are they best achieved?

The Christian understanding of mercy is central when we are talking about marriage and sexuality, forgiveness and Holy Communion, so not surprisingly, in this excellent volume the essential links between mercy and fidelity, between truth and grace in our Gospel teaching, are spelled out clearly and convincingly.

Mercy is different from most forms of tolerance, which is one of the more praiseworthy aspects of our pluralist societies. Some forms of tolerance define sin out of existence, but adult freedoms and inevitable differences need not be founded on a thoroughgoing relativism.

The indissolubility of marriage is one of the rich truths of divine revelation.


Order the book and the read the rest!  Right now its 24% off.

If Card. Kasper needs a copy, I hope he’ll use my link!


Posted in One Man & One Woman, Our Catholic Identity, Pope Francis | Tagged , , , , | 32 Comments

Synods and Sausage: having a Church isn’t for the squeamish

The opening of the Synod on the Family draws closer. Books in various languages are to be released in which marriage and Communion for the divorced and civilly remarried are studied, with a special eye on the proposals of Card. Kasper. Catholic media and blogs speculate that Pope Francis is irritated, maybe even angry, with those who are criticizing Card. Kasper’s proposals. Perhaps he is even exiling or punishing people.  Sides are polarizing.  People are having discussions.  Hands are wringing.

Can’t we all just get along?

A few thoughts.

First, this is what “synodality” looks like. It’s messy.

Bishops and theologians have at it. They propose. They counter-propose. They raise their voices.

Shall we forget our Church’s history? Look back to the ancient Church and the fiery synods of those days.

Anyone out there remember Vatican II?  It was in all the papers.

If people, especially liberals, want a more synod-like approach to how we do things in the Church, this is what they are going to get.

By the way, it doesn’t work very well for the ecclesial communities and churches that have it. But hey! Don’t complain about getting what you have asked for.

The liberal MSM is getting into it too.  For example, Nicole Winfield of AP has a bit today about the soon-to-be-released Remaining in the Truth of Christ: Marriage and Communion in the Catholic Church (the “five Cardinals” book that dismantles Card. Kasper’s notions – HERE).  Here’s a look at some of it:


Conservatives, [Let's stipulate that "conservatives" are the bad guys standing in the way of "mercy" and move on.] including the five cardinal authors, have vehemently ["vehemently"?  Read the book before characterizing its tone.] opposed Kasper’s suggestion as contrary to Christ’s teaching on the indissolubility of marriage. Their debate — unusually raw and public for such “princes of the church” [Huh?  Where's the "raw" in "We don't agree."] — has crystalized the growing discomfort among conservatives to some of Francis’ words and deeds, and sets the stage for what is likely to be a heated discussion starting Oct. 5.  [A "heated" discussion in a "synod"?  What a thought!   This underscores a problem of perspective among those who lean to the Left.  Synods are apparently supposed to be like meetings of the Korean Supreme People's Assembly in which participants clap mechanically for the predetermined (read: liberal) position.]


Francis has asserted church doctrine on the matter but has called for a merciful, pastoral approach: He reportedly told an Argentine woman earlier this year that she was free to receive Communion even though her husband’s first marriage was never annulled. Knowing the issue is divisive, though, he has convened the whole church to debate the issue as part of a broad discussion on family issues over the next two years.  [Here, she got it right.  The Pope called for discussion of the issue.  Even during the airplane presser on the way home from WYD in Rio, the Pope called for the questions to be studied.  And now "conservatives" are being "vehement" and the discussion is "raw" when some cardinals and scholars do exactly what the Pope asked for?]


It is rare for cardinals to publicly and pointedly accuse another cardinal of being flat-out wrong, and rarer still for a cardinal to question the pope, as Burke has done. [Woah! Is that what Card. Burke did?] Regarding the purported phone call to the Argentine woman, Burke told the EWTN Catholic channel: “I wouldn’t for a moment impute that Pope Francis intended to give a signal about church doctrine by calling someone on the phone. This is just absurd.” [It is blatantly false and manifestly unfair to state, as Winfield did here, that Card. Burke "questioned" the Pope.  And let's be clear.  Who knows what the Pope really said in that phone conversation, reported second-hand on Facebook. Furthermore, the Church's doctrine is not established in phone calls to couples living in irregular marriages.]


We are not used to seeing how the Church’s sausage is made.  It is messy.  Hands get dirty.  Lots of things go into it which, considered individually, aren’t very appealing.  Having a Church isn’t for the squeamish.

Can’t we all just get along?  Sure we can!  That doesn’t mean we can’t have heated arguments about matters that are central to our lives as Catholics.  We can and must discuss the truth in charity.

Unless, of course, the era of Caritas in veritate … charity in truth… is over.

Posted in Hard-Identity Catholicism, Liberals, One Man & One Woman, Our Catholic Identity, Pope Francis, The Drill, The future and our choices, Wherein Fr. Z Rants, ¡Hagan lío! | Tagged , , , , , , | 19 Comments

ASK FATHER: Is it wrong to use Holy Water to bless my unbaptized children?

From a Protestant, catechumen…


My husband and I are Protestant Christians, both baptized. We have three young children, all under the age of 5, and none of them are baptized. We are beginning RCIA and have been regularly attending a Catholic parish for about 9 months now. I was under the impression that it is alright to make the sign of the cross on the foreheads of my toddler and baby with holy water, and to teach my 4 year old how to bless herself. My husband disagreed, saying that only Catholics should do this. We asked our priest, who agreed with my husband that the use of holy water is only for the baptized; however, since we are praying that our oldest will soon choose to be baptized (we feel she is too old for us to force it upon her and the priest agrees), it is alright to teach her how to use it. So, then, is it wrong for me to use holy water to bless my other unbaptized children who are too small to reach into the font properly and then make the sign of the cross on themselves? Thank you for your help.

I see no reason why sacramentals cannot be used, within reason, by – or in this case on – the unbaptized.  Certainly it would not do to sprinkle holy water on an adult heathen who rejects the faith. Can. 1170 states,

“Blessings, which are to be imparted first of all to Catholics, can also be given to catechumens and even to non-Catholics, unless there is a prohibition of the Church to the contrary.”

The mother raises an interesting issue.

Children are presumed to attain the age of reason at 7 years old.  Prior to that point they are considered infants.  As such, they are unable to make the adult choice to be baptized.  They therefore fall under their parents’ rule.

However, if  - as seems to be the case here – a younger child demonstrates a maturity beyond her years, she may have prematurely attained the use of reason.  Thus, she could be able to make the conscious choice for baptism.

I strongly caution against the notion of all children being allowed to “make their own decision” with regards to Faith. Parents have a right and the responsibility to raise the children whom God has entrusted to them.  That responsibility includes having them baptized and catechized.

Work with the parish priest closely in the decision making process.

In the meantime, keep using that Holy Water. Keep teaching little fingers to make those little Crosses.

Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, ASK FATHER Question Box, Our Catholic Identity | Tagged , , , | 12 Comments

Where are the September Ember Days? (And some other fascinating stuff!)

In the Roman tradition we observe the Ember Days four times a year, around the changes of the seasons, during Lent, at Pentecost, and close to St. Lucy’s Day and Exaltation of the Cross (“Lenty, Penty, Crucy, Lucy”).  These days are the Wednesday, Friday and Saturday of the week and they are penitential in spirit and aim.  The learnéd Fr. Hunwicke at his blog Mutual Enrichment (olim “Liturgical Notes”) has some interesting notes about the displacement of the September Ember Days (which we really ought to be observing this week) to next week.

Thus, Fr. H:

But when are the Ember Days?


According to the pre-modern versions of the Roman Rite, and the Book of Common Prayer, the September and December Ember Weeks come respectively after the festivals of the Holy Cross and S Lucy. What a nice easy rule. A child can apply it. So that is where you will find them in the ORDO which I compile, and in the admirable Saint Lawrence Press ORDO. [You can sense what is coming, right?  If it was easy before, it had to be made harder.]

So why, in ORDOs printed according to the 1962 Roman books (LMS; SSPX), does the September Ember Week, this year, come a week later? [Good question.]

Technically, the reason why the Ember Weeks come where they do is that, in the Breviary, [that's the Breviarium Romanum as it was during the Council, with the 1961 rubrics, I think] their readings are [now] tied into those of the week after the Third Sunday of September. Before 1962, the “First” Sunday of September might actually be at the end of August. So, this year, August 31 is the official First Sunday of September. But the 1962 revisers, dippy lot of cleverclogs, [aka pointy-headed academics] changed this so as to be clear-cut and logical … First Sunday of September for them has to mean literally First Sunday of September. Hence (if you’re still interested) [we are!] the Third Week of September starts September 14 according to the old reckoning, but not until September 21 according to 1962.  [....?!?]

As so often happens when people try to tidy things up and to be neat and logical and clever, this decision of 1962 led to the potential dislocation of the Ember Week from its ancient mooring to Holy Cross Day.  [BOOOOO!]

Since the 1962 rite lasted in widespread use less than a decade, I find it hard to take it seriously in those matters where it conflicts with what the Latin Church had kept easy and natural for centuries.  [This would also apply, I assume, to the use of the 2nd Confiteor and the ridiculous changes to the Solemn Mass, as when the priest sits down for the Epistle... but I digress.]

Summorum pontificum, [Pontificum... reallyI presume, took the 1962 books as normative for ecumenical and practical reasons: because this is what the SSPX had done since Archbishop Lefebvre changed his liturgical policy around 1974. Logically, the 1965 rite should have been regarded as the last integral edition of a Missal before the Novus Ordo. But, although the 1965 Ordo Missae was ordered to be printed in editions of the Missal* and was declared typica in the Acta Apostolicae Sedisit seems that no copies of the Missale Romanum with the 1965 Ordo Missae in it ever in fact did roll off the printing presses. (Anybody got one?)  [Hmmm... good question.  Anyone?]

[NB:] But it appears that the 1962 Missal was never technically declared typica in the legal forum (AAS) in which it should have been so declared!!! Arguably, it does not exist (see the thread attached to my piece of 11 July 2014). [Hmmm... is this indeed the case?]

1962 should be regarded as an interim stop-gap.

Circa-1939ish should be the starting point for a measured, sensible reconstruction of the Vetus Ordo.  [Thus avoiding the Bugnini innovations promulgated by Pius XII.]
* The 1967 variations were never promulgated as an Ordo Missae, simply as Variationes … inducendae; nor were they ordered to be incorporated into a complete Missale, as the 1964 Ordo Missae was, nor were they declared typica in the AAS.

Question for you cleverboots out there.  There was an edition of the Roman Missal promulgated by Paul VI which had to be withdrawn because there was theological error in the Praenotanda.   Does anyone have one of those?

Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, The Drill | Tagged , , , | 21 Comments