@MadisonDiocese: 1st Masses in the Extraordinary Form

Here is some good news!

Six men were ordained for the Diocese of Madison this year. This relatively rural diocese has 35 men in formation! So much depends on the bishop.

Of the six men ordained this year, two of them celebrated their 1st Mass according to the Extraordinary Form!

On Saturday, I was in choro for the 1st Mass, a Solemn Mass, of one on the new priests.


FacebookEmailPinterestGoogle GmailShare/Bookmark
Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Tagged | Leave a comment

Jupiter and Venus are having a … conjunction! In plain sight!

15_06_29_conjunctionJupiter and Venus are having a conjunction!  In plain sight!  No Obergefell v. Hodges for them, no sirree!

From SpaceWeather (and your own observation).

For the next few nights, the distance between the planets will continue to shrink. On June 30th they will be only 1/3rd of a degree apart–less than the diameter of the full Moon. If you have binoculars or a small telescope, point them at the planets. Both will fit in the same field of view, allowing you to see the fat crescent phase of Venus and the moons of Jupiter simultaneously. It’s a great way to end the day.

To find them, step outside just after sunset and look west. Don’t wait until the sky fades to black. A tight conjunction of Venus and Jupiter framed by twilight blue has a special beauty that you won’t want to miss.

Posted in Look! Up in the sky! | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

“We have two tools at hand that the other side does not: truth and grace.”

From Crisis we have a piece called “Taking Back Marriage” by Scott Rickert with my emphases and comments:


For the Christian, of course, evangelization is the ultimate solution to cultural problems. And evangelization is not the calling simply of popes and bishops, priests and deacons, but of all Christians. Each of us needs to gain a better understanding of the Church’s teaching on both natural and sacramental marriage, so that we can explain it to others, within the context of natural law and the Gospel. [Once again, if we don’t know our Faith (quae et qua) we can’t give any reasons for the hope that is in us and we don’t have a clear identity.  If we are clear about that, why should anyone listen to us?] Given the abysmal state of catechesis[the entertainment industry out-catechizes the Church by orders of magnitude.  We can’t compete with “Modern Family”.] within the Church for several decades now, the hierarchy will need to lead the way, and that will require our bishops and priests to quit worrying so much about the possibility of causing “offense” (which in secular terms means simply “saying something that someone else doesn’t want to hear”) and start worrying more about philosophical and theological clarity. [Yo!  That means that lay people are going to have to support and encourage priests and bishops!  Send notes when they stand up and speak!  Support their projects!] But parents need to play their God-given role as well. The sheer number of practicing Catholics of my generation (I am 47) and younger who have embraced the attempted redefinition of marriage bears witness not only to the failure of our shepherds to teach their flocks well but of mothers and fathers both to teach the truth about marriage and to live it in their own lives. The embrace of contraception and pornography, the easy recourse to divorce, and the pursuit of wealth and “self-fulfillment” at the expense of spouse and children all speak louder than any platitudes parents may utter about the necessity and beauty of marriage.

Obergefell v. Hodges was not the end of the assault on marriage; it is much closer to the beginning. [Without question.  Keep you eye out for new projects, such as the lowering of the age of consent… which is “arbitrary” of course, and limits “rights”.  Right?  Surely Justice Kennedy and the other four can, through better informed understandings and new insights discern a new Right to Sex with Children.] Every argument that Justice Kennedy made for gay “marriage” applies equally to polygamous relationships and even to incestuous ones. (This is not hyperbole or paranoia; read his opinion, and try to find a single argument that does not apply.) [As I said.] In the wake of the decision, numerous proponents of gay “marriage” have simultaneously claimed that churches will never be required to perform gay “marriages” and argued that there’s no reason why they shouldn’t perform them; that in itself is evidence that those who, like the Catholic Church, refuse to do so will find themselves sooner rather than later tarred with the brush of hate, and perhaps only shortly after that actively persecuted for defending the truth.

While it seems on the surface that those who have fought for “marriage equality” have done so primarily at the ballot box and through the courts, the reality is that they triumphed on June 26 because for decades they have been reshaping the culture. We defenders of marriage have been the ones who have largely confined our efforts to the political arena, but it’s not too late to make up for our mistake. We have two tools at hand that the other side does not: truth and grace. It’s time to begin acting like we believe in both.

Well said.

Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Notes concerning SCOTUS same-sex decision Obergefell v. Hodges

Here are a few points of interest concerning  SCOTUS same-sex decision Obergefell v. Hodges.

My patented emphases and comments.

First, see the comments of Phil Lawler:

So now is it ‘hate speech’ to deplore the Obergefell decision?

The ink was barely dry on last week’s Supreme Court ruling when Father James Martin, SJ, began scolding Catholics who were, from his decorous perspective, too strident in denouncing the decision.  [Is anyone surprised at Fr. Martin’s full-throated glee at the decision?]

”No issue brings out so much hatred from so many Catholics as homosexuality,” Father Martin told his Facebook followers. He repeated the same message several times throughout the day, warning commenters that they must not indulge in “homophobia” and suggesting that someone who questioned whether we were all expected to sing “Kumbaya” was illustrating his point. So is sarcasm now prima facie evidence of hatred?

In my own surfing through the internet, reading scores of posts on the Obergefell decision, I can honestly say that I did not see a single message, a single comment, that struck me as hate-filled. Perhaps Father Martin’s email traffic is qualitatively different from mine. Or perhaps—far more likely, I’m afraid—he sees “hatred” where I see only vehement disagreement.

Is it possible to be angry about the Obergefell decision, to consider it a travesty of justice and a betrayal of the Constitution, without being viewed as a hater? Wait; let’s turn that question upside-down. Is it possible to see all serious disagreement with the decision as hate-speech, without celebrating the outcome of the Obergefell case?

I ask the latter question, you see, because if Father Martin was upset by the Supreme Court ruling, his dismay did not show through on his Twitter feed. He recommended three columns reacting to the decision: one by a fellow Jesuit, recounting how his grandmother could not marry her lesbian partner; another by the gay New York Times columnist Frank Bruni, celebrating the decision; the third by the gay activist/blogger Andrew Sullivan, also celebrating.

The recommendation for Andrew Sullivan’s piece was particularly striking because of the title: “It Is Accomplished”—an explicit reference to the words of Jesus Christ on the Cross. Father Martin, who was horrified by so much of what he read on Friday afternoon, let that blasphemous headline pass without comment.


At Legal Insurrection I saw this.  This came out before Obergefell v. Hodges, so don’t let the tenses screw up your head:

Elena Kagan 2009: “There is no federal constitutional right to same-sex marriage”

I came under some criticism in May 2010, when Kagan was nominated for the Supreme Court, for taking Kagan at her word. Claims were made that I took the sentence out of context, was naive, or shamefully deceptive. I’ll plead guilty to being naive, but I didn’t take her sentence out of context, shamefully or otherwise. Matt Vespa’s 2013 post at PJ Media summarizes the back and forth.

Here is the first part of Kagan’s testimony, with context by me:

In response to a question from Sen. John Cornyn (at page 28 of her Senate Judiciary Questionnaire), Kagan stated flat out that there was no constitutional right for same sex couples to marry (emphasis mine):

1. As Solicitor General, you would be charged with defending the Defense of Marriage Act. That law, as you may know, was enacted by overwhelming majorities of both houses of Congress (85-14 in the Senate and 342-67 in the House) in 1996 and signed into law by President Clinton.

a. Given your rhetoric about the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy—you called it “a profound wrong—a moral injustice of the first order”—let me ask this basic question: Do you believe that there is a federal constitutional right to samesex marriage?

Answer: There is no federal constitutional right to same-sex marriage.

b. Have you ever expressed your opinion whether the federal Constitution should be read to confer a right to same-sex marriage? If so, please provide details.

Answer: I do not recall ever expressing an opinion on this question.

This doesn’t mean that Kagan opposes gay marriage. But she clearly believes it is a matter for the political process, not a constitutional right.


She now holds “better-informed understanding”, I suppose.

From IJReview:

A Mass Communion Was Given In Front of the Supreme Court After The Gay Marriage Ruling [No, don’t worry.]

Rev. Mary Kay Totty of the United Methodist Church arranged a mass communion for those gathered to celebrate the Supreme Court’s ruling on gay marriage today. The communion took place one hour after the decision to legalize gay marriage nationwide was passed down.


As the photo caption says: “The communion consisted of two loaves of bread and a cup of grape juice.”

Yes, indeed that is correct.  That’s what it was.

On the Communion theme, from Detroit’s FreeP from waaaaay back in 2013…. seems like decades ago, really:

Detroit-area Catholic leaders urge gay marriage supporters to skip Communion

A Detroit professor and legal adviser to the Vatican says Catholics who promote gay marriage should not try to receive holy Communion, a key part of Catholic identity.

And the archbishop of Detroit, Allen Vigneron, told the Free Press Sunday that Catholics who receive Communion while advocating gay marriage would “logically bring shame for a double-dealing that is not unlike perjury.”

The comments of Vigneron and Edward Peters, who teaches Catholic canon law at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit, are part of a polarizing discussion about gay marriage that echoes debate over whether politicians who advocate abortion rights should receive Communion.

In a post on his blog last week, [2013, remember?] Peters said that Catholic teachings make it clear that marriage is between one man and one woman. And so, “Catholics who promote ‘same-sex marriage’ act contrary to” Catholic law “and should not approach for holy Communion,” he wrote. “They also risk having holy Communion withheld from them … being rebuked and/or being sanctioned.”

Peters didn’t specify a Catholic politician or public figure in his post. But he told the Free Press that a person’s “public efforts to change society’s definition of marriage … amount to committing objectively wrong actions.”


If it was true then, it is true now.

Finally, let’s remember what the CDF said in 2003… approved by St. John Paul II HERE:

In those situations where homosexual unions have been legally recognized or have been given the legal status and rights belonging to marriage, clear and emphatic opposition is a duty. One must refrain from any kind of formal cooperation in the enactment or application of such gravely unjust laws and, as far as possible, from material cooperation on the level of their application. In this area, everyone can exercise the right to conscientious objection. … If it is true that all Catholics are obliged to oppose the legal recognition of homosexual unions,Catholic politicians are obliged to do so in a particular way, in keeping with their responsibility as politicians.

Posted in One Man & One Woman, Our Catholic Identity, Sin That Cries To Heaven, The Coming Storm, The future and our choices | Tagged , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Congratulations Card. Burke: 40 years of priesthood!

Today is His Eminence Raymond Card. Burke’s 40th anniversary of ordination to the sacred priesthood.  He was, I believe, ordained by Paul VI.

That was a good day for the Church.

Card. Burke is one of the kindest men alive and a great scholar of Holy Church’s law.

I am sure that all of you will stop, right now, and say a prayer for him.

Tomorrow, in Rome, His Eminence will celebrate Holy Mass at S. M. in Cosmedin. The Mass will start at 4:30 PM: Novus Ordo, in Latin.

Hearty congratulations to Cardinal Burke!

Click for the story!

Ad multos annos!

Posted in Fr. Z KUDOS | Tagged | 13 Comments

NOTE TO READERS: Registration, Comments, getting LOCKED OUT

Medieval siegeEven as you read, right now, this blog is under siege by vile spammers trying to register to post their putrid slime.   I now have logs that show me what’s going on.

I ratcheted up the drawbridge and released the gators into the moat.  Oil is on the boil.

To comment here, you have to be registered and your registration must be approved.  Registrations go into a queue, which I check when I can.

If you register to comment, pay attention to that field where I ask information about you.  You don’t have to provide a biography, address or blood type.  Just write something that will show me that you aren’t either a bot or a nefarious ne’erdowell.  Your confirmation name is a good one, favorite encyclical… that sort of thing.

NB: The defense software is set to DEFCON 2 (hint: high).  Therefore, be careful how you log in.  The log keeps track of the number of failed attempts. After 3 failed attempts, you are locked out for a long period of time.  Also, if you log in from multiple devices, you might be mistaken for a vile spammer and you will be consigned to Lockout Limbo™.

Drop me a note if you get yourself locked out.   I will try to fix it.  SEND YOUR IP ADDRESS. Click HERE and then bookmark it.

I am keeping an eye on the logs.  I try to fix things for obviously innocent participants even before you write.  But… I can’t be watching all the time.

Finally, ask whatever Guardian Angels assigned to help us out here.

I direct you once again to my Litany For The Conversion Of Internet Thugs (a wry work in progress):

It’s summer.  Start thinking about ICED coffee.

Are you thinking about ICED coffee yet?

How about now?



Litany for the conversion of internet thugs (2.0)
(For private use only, when truly irritated, and when the alternative is foul language.)

Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God, the Son, Redeemer of the World, have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, one God, have mercy on us.

Lest internet thugs be eternally tormented by all the fiends of hell, convert them, O Lord.
Lest they pass eternity in utter despair, convert them, O Lord.
Lest they come to be damned for the harm they cause, convert them, O Lord.
Lest they roast forever in the deepest cinders of hell, convert them, O Lord.
Lest they suffer the unceasing pain of loss, convert them, O Lord.

Lest devils endlessly increase their physical agony, convert them, O Lord.
Lest devils twist their bowels and boil their blood in hell, convert them, O Lord.
Lest devils use them as toys and tools, convert them, O Lord.
Lest devils forever gnaw upon their skulls, convert them, O Lord.

Lest the innocent be harmed by the sins of thugs, convert them, O Lord.
Lest the innocent yield to thugs in weakness, convert them, O Lord.
Lest the innocent be drawn into thuggish traps, convert them, O Lord.

From faceless Facebook admin drones, spare us O Lord.
From tweeting Twitter idiots, spare us O Lord.
From loony Wikipedia liars, spare us O Lord.
From from heart-hardened spammers, spare us O Lord.
From liberal nut-case smear-blogging hacks, spare us O Lord.
From thread-dominating combox trolls, spare us, O Lord.
From sophomoric drive-by commentators, spare us, O Lord.

From server memory resource difficulties, spare us O Lord.
From rss feed problems, spare us O Lord.
From DOS attacks, spare us O Lord.
From power outages and surges, spare us O Lord.
From viruses, trojan horses, and all manner of snares, Lord save us.
From wasting our time, Lord save us.
From our own stupidity, Lord save us.

St. Michael, defend us.
St. Gabriel, defend us.
Holy Guardian Angels, defend us.
St. Isidore of Seville, defend us.
St. Francis de Sales, defend us.
St. Maximilian Kolbe, defend us.
All ye angels and saints….. GRRRRR.

Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, who takest away the sins of the world, graciously hear us, O Lord,
Lamb of God who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.

V. Christ, Jesus who died for our sins.
R. Please return, and return swiftly.

Let us pray.

Almighty and merciful God, who according to Thy ineffable plan hast called us into existence to do Thy will amid the vicissitudes and contagion of this world grant, we beseech Thee, both protection for Thy servants who use the tools of this digital age and confusion for evil-doers who abuse their neighbors and Thy gifts.

Through Christ our Lord.   Amen.

Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, Si vis pacem para bellum! | Tagged | 18 Comments

Chapel by chapel: Corpus Christi, London – Lady Chapel Restored

Every once in a while I have posted updates about the restoration going on at Corpus Christi Church in Maiden Lane, London, near Covent Garden.  This is the “actors Church” in London and it is also where the traditional form of Holy Mass has been preserved since the time of Cardinal Heenan.

The parish priest, Fr. Robinson, sent me a photo of their restored Lady Chapel.  It’s beautiful!


There is in these USA a 501(c)(3) way to donate for the restoration project!  Check out the American Foundation for Catholics, “an independent American non profit organisation and it has been established to accept donations of $50 or more from American taxpayers and to make grants to Catholic parishes (and other Catholic causes) in the UK.” HERE

I look forward to my next trip to London when I will see it in person.

Posted in Brick by Brick, Just Too Cool, Mail from priests | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Observations about important CDF document on “Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons”

A priest friend sent me some notes in response to my posting HERE of the CDF’s 2003 document: Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons.

His points are worth sharing.  I’ll edit a bit:

1. Saint Charles Lwanga and his Companions, Martyrs.

The document was published on June 3, 2003, Memorial of Saint Charles Lwanga and his Companions, Martyrs.

I do not think this was a coincidence!

Saint Charles Lwanga and his Companions were killed by the homosexual King Mwanga of Buganda (yes his country was really called that!). The first martyrs were killed because they tried to protect the young page boys from the king’s unnatural sexual desires. The later martyrs included many of the page boys themselves.

The martyrs included both Catholics and Protestants – but of course Paul VI canonised only the Catholic martyrs. At Namugongo (half way between Kampala and Jinja) there are separate shrines to the Catholic & Protestant martyrs – although they were executed side by side.

Nowadays not all our political rulers may wish to indulge in deviant sexual practises themselves – but they do seem to wish to corrupt young people and to persuade them that there is no such thing as objective moral values.

2. Pope Francis is to visit Uganda in November

The reason for the visit is to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the canonisation of the Uganda Martyrs.

This is just after the Synod on the Family.

I do not think this is a coincidence either!

Jesuits are supposed to be pretty smart (although I do realise that this is not always the case) and they are also reputed to be also rather …..er…..well…er….Jesuitical.

Now can you imagine the reaction Pope Francis would get if he turned up in Kampala in November and announced that the Uganda Martyrs had been mistaken – and that same-sex “love” is just as valid as the love between a husband and a wife?

But imagine the reception he will get if he upholds Christian marriage – and marital fidelity.

President Museveni of Uganda helped to lead an anti-AIDS campaign that did not rely on peddling condoms – but promoted abstinence before marriage and fidelity throughout marriage.

And Uganda succeeded in reducing the number of AIDS sufferers. Other counties (which did peddle condoms) did not.

“The use of condoms is not the ultimate solution in the fight against HIV/AIDS”, said President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni at an AIDS conference in Thailand. He caused much controversy when he said the best ways to stop the spread of AIDS are abstinence and faithfulness in marriage.”

And especially when…

3. Pope Francis has just approved the canonisation of St Thérèse’s parents

“Louis and Zélie Martin will be the first couple to be canonised together as husband and wife. Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect for the Congregation for the Causes of the Saints, said the canonisation would testify to their “extraordinary witness of conjugal and familial spirituality”. HERE

Louis Martin (1823–1894) and Zélie Guerin (1831–1877) had nine children.  The five who survived infancy all entered religious life. The most well-known is St Thérèse, co-patroness of France.”

Posted in HONORED GUESTS, Mail from priests, Pope Francis | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Your Sunday Sermon Notes – POLL and AUDIO

Was there a good point or two in the sermon you heard at the Mass for your Sunday obligation?  Let us know.

I’ll bet that many of you heard something about the SCOTUS decision Obergefell v. Hodges (same-sex “marriage”).

Let’s have a POLL.  Choose your best answer.  Use the combox to explain.

In Sunday's sermon, about SCOTUS's decision Obergefell v. Hodges there was...

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

On Sunday I said Masses in both the Extraordinary and the Ordinary Form. For my sermon for the Ordinary Form Mass, click below.

Posted in Sin That Cries To Heaven, The Coming Storm, The Drill, The future and our choices, The Last Acceptable Prejudice, Wherein Fr. Z Rants | Tagged | 57 Comments

Super fun book alert!

A friend who is a reader here (and a monthly donor!) recommended a book recently, while we were chatting during evening drinks and cigars at Acton U (he and his wife went to that, too – smart people).

I just finished the audio version and I must pass it along.  It was great fun!

Consider listening to it, since an audio book plays a part!  I had it on my Kindle, with the Audible option (which, in a cool way, synchs across your reading options).

Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore: A Novel by Robin Sloan



It’s wonderfully nerdy and old fashioned at the same time.

Don’t have a Kindle yet?  Get a Paperwhite HERE.  One of you wonderful readers sent me one.  I have been using it in tandem with my older Kindle.  The Paperwhite is super slim and small, easy to slide into a pocket.  There is the Kindle Fire HERE.  I haven’t used one of those yet.



Posted in Just Too Cool, REVIEWS, The Campus Telephone Pole | Tagged , | 4 Comments