22 July: St. Mary Magdalene, Penitent


I saw this painting a few years ago in the Prado as part of a great exhibit of Georges de La Tour. 31 of his 40 known paintings were together.

In 2016, the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, headed by the great Robert Card. Sarah, issued a decree making – for the Novus Ordo, mind you – what was the Memorial of St. Mary Magdalene into a Feast.

In the Novus Ordo, 22 July is now the Feast of St. Mary Magdalene.

She also now gets her own Preface.

In an explanatory article, the then-Secretary of the CDW, Archbp. Arthur Roche, (now, gulp, Prefect) says that Francis expressly desired the elevation of this to a Feast.

In the decree we find some of the reasons.

I’m sure you can puzzle this out.

Nostris vero temporibus cum Ecclesia vocata sit ad impensius consulendum de mulieris dignitate, de nova Evangelizatione ac de amplitudine mysterii divinae misericordiae bonum visum est ut etiam exemplum Sanctae Mariae Magdalenae aptius fidelibus proponatur. Haec enim mulier agnita ut dilectrix Christi et a Christo plurimum dilecta, “testis divinae misericordiae” a Sancto Gregorio Magno, et “apostolorum apostola” a Sancto Thoma de Aquino appellata, a christifidelibus huius temporis deprehendi potest ut paradigma ministerii mulierum in Ecclesia.

English release of the same: “Given that in our time the Church is called to reflect in a more profound way on the dignity of Woman, on the New Evangelisation and on the greatness of the Mystery of Divine Mercy, it seemed right that the example of Saint Mary Magdalene might also fittingly be proposed to the faithful. In fact this woman, known as the one who loved Christ and who was greatly loved by Christ, and was called a “witness of Divine Mercy” by Saint Gregory the Great and an “apostle of the apostles” by Saint Thomas Aquinas, can now rightly be taken by the faithful as a model of women’s role in the Church.”

Here is the Preface:

Vere dignum et iustum est,
æquum et salutáre,
nos te, Pater omnípotens,
cuius non minor est misericórdia quam potéstas,
in ómnibus prædicáre per Christum Dóminum nostrum.

Qui in hortu [sic … horto!!!] maniféstus appáruit Maríæ Magdalénæ,
quippe quae eum diléxerat vivéntem,
in cruce víderat moriéntem,
quæsíerat in sepúlcro iacéntem,
ac prima adoráverat a mórtuis resurgéntem,
et eam apostolátus offício coram apóstolis honorávit
ut bonum novæ vitæ núntium
ad mundi fines perveníret.

Unde et nos, Dómine, cum Angelis et Sanctis univérsis
tibi confitémur, in exsultatióne dicéntes:
Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus Dóminus Deus Sábaoth…

Note that quippe a conjunction, when paired with a pronoun, quae gives us a reason or a cause.   We thus say something like, “as one in fact who” or “inasmuch as she”. Usually you see this with subjunctive.. but… well….  Apostolatus is 4th, so its genitive is apostolatûs.  That manifestus seems repetitive, since we have apparuit right away.  But manifestus, can mean, along with “evident” and so forth, “palpable”.  Manifestus is formed from manus and fendo, and as such indicates that one hits something with the hand.  That’s why something is “palpable, evident, clear, manifest”.

I thought it might be an adverbial use, but it probably isn’t.  There’s a perfectly good manifeste available in Latin. Augustine of Hippo in Contra epistulam Parmeniani 4,8 wrote: Quem proptera saepe nomino, quia ita manifestus apparuit, ut ubicumque fuerit nominatus nullus se ignorare respondeat.  Leo the Great in tr. 71 wrote: Et licet reuolutio lapidis, euacuatio monumenti, depositio linteorum, et totius facti angeli narratores copiose ueritatem dominicae resurrectionis adstruerent, et mulierum tamen uisui, et apostolorum oculis frequenter manifestus apparuit, non solum conloquens cum eis, sed etiam habitans atque conuescens, et pertractari se diligenti curioso que contactu ab eis quos dubitatio perstringebat admittens.  The phrase manifestus apparuit also happens to appear manifestly in old Prefaces in versions of the Gelasian Sacramentary, such as in the Liber sacramentorum Augustodunensis: Vd. <per Christum dominum nostrum>. qui post resurrectionem suam omnibus discipulis suis manifestus apparuit. et ipsis cernentibus est elevatus in caelum. ut nos diuinitatis suae tribueret esse participes: Et ideo cum angelis.  In any event, the construction is well attested.  If we go farther afield and look for manifeste, manifestius, etc., with forms of appareo we get lots of occasions from Classical writers such as Quintillian, Pliny Elder.  In Latin Fathers we find it in Cyprian of Carthage, Novatian, Augustine of course, often,  It’s a commonplace.

Back to the Preface.

The decree states that conferences will have to work out their translations of the preface.


Truly is it worthy and just, advantageous and salutary, that in all things we proclaim You, Father Almighty, whose mercy is not less than (Your) power, through Christ our Lord – Who, manifest, appeared in the garden to Mary Magdalene, for indeed she loved Him while he was living, saw Him on the Cross dying, in the sepulcher sought Him lying, and, being the first, adored Him from the dead rising, and He honored her with the duty of apostleship in the presence of the apostles, so that the good news of new life would reach unto the ends of the earth.  Whence we also, O Lord, with Angels and Saints, profess to you, saying in exultation: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God of Hosts….

Here is the “working translation” of the Preface:

Preface of the Apostle of the Apostles

It is truly right and just,
our duty and our salvation,
always and everywhere to give you thanks,
Lord, holy Father, almighty and eternal God,
whose mercy is no less than His power,
to preach the Gospel to everyone, through Christ, our Lord.
In the garden He appeared to Mary Magdalene,
who loved him in life,
who witnessed his death on the cross,
who sought him as he lay in the tomb,
who was the first to adore him when he rose from the dead,
and whose apostolic duty was honored by the apostles,
that the good news of life might reach the ends of the earth.
And so Lord, with all the Angels and Saints,
we, too, give you thanks, as in exultation we acclaim:
Holy, holy, holy Lord, God of power and might …

Roche explained in his article that this act in the present ecclesial context, and thus it responds to the desire to reflect more deeply on the dignity of women and the new evangelization, and the mystery of divine mercy.  I admit that all of those are mysterious, but I digress.  Roche includes some nifty quotes about Mary Magdalene, too.  I’m sure the English of that article will soon be available.  I’m not going to translate it here, for lack of time.

There is something weird in Roche’s explanation, however.  At the end, after trotting out some Thomas Aquinas about Mary Magdalene as “apostolorum apostola“, he writes:

Perciò è giusto che la celebrazione liturgica di questa donna abbia il medesimo grado di festa dato alla celebrazione degli apostoli nel Calendario Romano Generale e che risalti la speciale missione di questa donna, che è esempio e modello per ogni donna nella Chiesa.

Therefore it is just that the liturgical celebration of this woman should have the same level of feast given to the celebration of the Apostles in the General Roman Calendar and that it underscore the special mission of this woman, who is an example and model for every woman in the Church.

That’s odd.  Mary Magdalene has been a favorite saint of mine ever since, well…. ever.   The Church’s tradition, particularly Gregory the Great, mostly identified as the same person, Mary Magdalene, the woman with the jar of nard, and the sister of Lazarus and Martha.  Certainly she was at the foot of the Cross and at the tomb on the morning after the Resurrection.  There’s no evidence that she was a prostitute or the adulteress brought to the Lord in John 7.  In Mark 16:9 we read that the Lord had performed an exorcism for her: “But he rising early the first day of the week, appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom he had cast seven devils.”  This is also in Luke 8:2: “Mary who is called Magdalene, out of whom seven devils were gone forth”.   Augustine thought these were perhaps the seven deadly sins or vices.  It may have been on this foundation, along with some ambiguity about various Marys in the Gospels, that she was conglomerated into also being a fallen woman who then repented.  At least from that tradition we got some really great paintings!

Also… and here is something for you who are interested in art history… some day when you have time, check out the strong similarity of paintings of “penitent Magdalene” and of dying Cleopatra with the asp at her breast.  Warning: some of them can be a little spicy.  But I digress.

In any event, in the Novus Ordo – Mary Magdalene now has a Feast, which happens also to be the same level as the celebrations of the Apostles.

That doesn’t put her on the level of the Apostles.  Sorry, it just doesn’t.  Watch how some libs and feminists will do just that.  

His scriptis, this was overdue.  I’m glad that – in the Novus Ordo – Mary Magdalene has her Feast.

Here is an interesting point dropped to me by a reader about how Mary Magdalene was honored in Holy Mass before the Council.

Before 1960 or so, Mary’s celebration merited a Creed!  (For those of you who don’t know, in the older form of Holy Mass the Creed is said a lot more often.)  Here’s a shot of her formulary from a Missal from 1947.

Here is her formulary from 1962.  No Creed.  Kind of a demotion.

A rocky history, this feast.  Perhaps like the saint herself?

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ASK FATHER: Home Chapel How To’s – consecrated chalice and paten? Wherein Fr. Z rants

I’ve been getting notes about, and seeing chatter about on the interwebs, people setting up home chapels just in  case.

I think it is good to have one anyway, not just in case.

In any event, while it is relatively easy to acquire the various accoutrement for Holy Mass in the Vetus Ordo (even easier for the Novus), it isn’t always easy to obtain a chalice and paten that are consecrated.

Remember: When some sacred object that isn’t in itself sacred (like a relic) it loses its consecration.   If a previously consecrated chalice is sold, it is “desecrated”, that is, it loses its consecration.  It doesn’t mean that it was defiled in a serious way as in misused.   When you regild (replate) a chalice or paten, it has to be reconsecrated.  If an altar is changed in a major way, e.g., previously fixed down or the mensa was detached for any reason, it must be reconsecrated. So, substantial changes or sales require reconsecration.

I think I have a solution for that.  If you are in a situation where the local bishop has refused to consecrate your chalice and paten with the older form in the Pontifical, you might drop me a line.

And I, frankly, don’t go for the line that all you have to do is use the chalice and paten once for it to be consecrated.   I hold an unconsecrated chalice used for Mass may thereafter be considered sanctified in some way but it is not consecrated. A chalice that is consecrated and then used for Mass is also sanctified. By consecration a chalice is formally, by special rites, set apart for a particular use.

“But Father! But Father!”, some of you are pewling. “This is just merciless nitpicking.  You are nitpicking merciless nitpicker!  You hate mercy and compassion and all those…. those… errrr… things that Pope Francis talks about … like… the Earth’s climate and fairness and … and you hate Vatican II!”

We have to make the distinction.  Qui distinguit bene docet.

And, quaeritur, why not consecrate the chalice with the special rite that Holy Church provides?  Why not?

I’ll tell you “why” since you are asking.

My I rant a little?

One exorcist I have had contact with suggested that multiple problems in the Church result from improper sacred liturgical worship.  Part of the problem is that things being used for Holy Mass (vestments, chalices, candles, linens, etc.) have not been duly consecrated.

What is consecration?

This world, as Jesus said, has its Prince.  The created realm fell in the fall of our First Parents and came under the domination of the Enemy.   Consecration rips things away from the Enemy and hands them over to God alone.  There are consecrated things, places and persons.  Harming them or using them wrongly is not just vandalism or assault or theft, etc.  It is also the sin of sacrilege.  Steal a consecrated chalice and, when you go to confession (if you are lucky) you have to confess not only the theft, but also the sacrilege.

It makes sense that everything used for sacred liturgy should be properly consecrated.

How is it that we lost sight of this?  It makes sense, right?   If I am not in a gulag, I want to do it right… with the right rite.  We are our rites!

Modernism has infected large swathes of the Church, including clergy.  Modernists (whether they know they are or not) reduce the supernatural to the natural (whether they know it or not).

Now think about what it means to say that we don’t have to, under normal circumstances, use blessed and consecrated things for Holy Mass.

Think about the ripple effect that has in the Church.

You might remember a school experience with a wave table, where you create waves of certain frequencies.  Then you create waves with a matching or harmonic frequency from another direction.  They cancel out.

That happens to priests too, by the way.  They get cancelled by priests and bishops who are going the opposite direction.  Believe me.  I know.

Thus endeth the rant.



Here is a shot of the late Card. Pell, re-consecrating my chalice from my ordination.  He passed away soon after.  I treasure the chalice and paten, consecrated by two great men, Card. Mayer and Card. Pell.

Posted in "How To..." - Practical Notes, ASK FATHER Question Box, Hard-Identity Catholicism, Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Save The Liturgy - Save The World, Wherein Fr. Z Rants | Tagged , , ,

Your Sunday Sermon Notes – 9th Sunday after Pentecost (N.O.: 16th) 2024

Too many people today are without good, strong preaching, to the detriment of all. Share the good stuff.

Was there a GOOD point made in the sermon you heard at your Mass of obligation for this 9th Sunday after Pentecost, or the 16th Sunday of Ordinary Time?

Tell about attendance especially for the Traditional Latin Mass.

Any local changes or (hopefully good) news?

A couple thoughts about the sign of the cross: HERE  A taste…


On that Palm Sunday Jesus went to the Temple.  Surely people thought that he was going to take His role as the Davidic priest-king.  There He found the Courtyard of the Gentiles encroached with vendors of sacrificial animals and with moneychangers.  Coins with images couldn’t be used for sacrifices, so they had to be exchanged.  With a whip of cords the Lord drove them out, one of His motives being that the Gentiles were left with no place to worship the one true God.  Commenting on this dramatic moment, St. Jerome (+420) remarked that this was perhaps the Lord’s greatest miracle, considering their numbers and the way enemies were arrayed against Him.  St. Jerome opined that something of His divine authority must have shined forth in that moment which could not be withstood.


Daily (Venice) Shot(s) 1083 – Feast of the Redeemer

On the third Sunday of July Venetians celebrated the “Feast of the Redeemer” with festivities and fireworks.  They commemorate the end of the terrible plague of 1576 that killed 50,000 people.  To ask for God intervention, in 1576 the Senate built a small wooden church on Giudecca island, the “Redeemer” Church. On 20 July 1577 they celebrated the end of the plague thanking Christ for the grace received.  To cross the Giudecca Canal and reach the Redeemer Church on foot, a bridge of barges was created. For 5 centuries the tradition has carried on and a temporary bridge is made.

A friend is in Venice and sent these. I think they didn’t build the bridge this year.

In chessy news, my guy Wesley So – great today – defeated Fabiano Caruana in the lower bracket of Division 1 to advance against, I think, Magnus who lost in the upper bracket to MVL.  I don’t know what Magnus was thinking: he played on a tablet… in Rapid.  In time trouble, there’s no way anyone can scramble fast enough on a tablet.  In fact in two games when he had a bad position and moving toward time trouble, he just resigned.  I wonder if his heart was in it.   He just had a loss with the death of his mother: R.I.P.  Today at 11 EST it’s Wesley v. Magnus (I hope he sticks to his tablet) and Jan-Krzysztof Duda v. Ian Nepomniachtchi. In the upper bracket we are pulling for MVL to give “Puer” a drubbing.

Welcome registrant:

Fr. Dimwitty


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Daily Rome Shot 1082 – Happy International Chess Day! CRAZY 9 move game!

CRAZY game yesterday in day 3 of the (mouthful alert!) Division I Winners Quarterfinal match in the CrunchLabs Masters 2024. “Puer” (aka Alireza Firouzja) stumbled into a NINE MOVE LOSS to Fabiano Caruana. The commentators, Rombert Hess and David Howell were musing about a possible line and then Puer did it! Watch this!

I am off to OTB as soon as I can finish this.

Please remember me when shopping online and use my affiliate links.  US HERE – UK HERE  WHY?  This helps to pay for health insurance (massively hiked for this new year of surprises), utilities, groceries, etc..  At no extra cost, you provide help for which I am grateful.

Interim, motus ad lusorem cum militibus albis pertinent. Scaccus mattus, scilicet mors regis, duobus in motis veniat.

NB: Detineam explicationes in crastinum, ne vestrae interrumpantur commentationes.

Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Tagged

WARNING PSA: I mentioned a few days ago that I had watched some videos of….

I mentioned a few days ago that I had watched some anti-scammer videos – scambaiters.  They are fascinating.  I am interested in these things right now, because I have started to receive scam emails.  They are so lame, but unwary people fall for them.  Also, someone close to me got scammed with a gift card refund ploy.

Today, I saw a video which said that in g**g** searches, the SPONSORED links at the top of the search can be FAKE links pretending to take you to big companies that scammers uses for their nefarious schemes.  Anyone can buy a sponsored link.  That’s what they do.   I have always avoided those, let’s say instinctively.  Instead, I always scroll down to where the sponsored links end.  THEN I go to the sites and go through log in procedures.   I always have two-factor authentication on.  I use super strong passwords like – and this is an example which is not a password to anything I have: Fs]WX<“{E<eZM_]$Y&K{.

There are even scams which target people who are selling goods online.  They contact to buy, and then send a FAKE paypal email saying they’ve sent the money and then get from you the FedEx tracking for your item.  The fact is, you were never paid, and they got your stuff… which they resell: pure profit.

Friends, if you have elderly family members and friends, TALK TO THEM.  Advise them about strong passwords.

For businesses, btw, FEDERATED has a strong password vault.  Contact them with questions.

Seriously.  I makes me SICK what I have seen online.  It made me furious when someone close to me was scammed, which inflicted terrible shame and guilt.  Thankfully, it was a fairly small scam.  Now that scammers are using the ploy of getting people to withdraw large amounts of cash and going to a cyber currency ATM and send it to their wallet… this is getting serious.  Also, now there are scammers who are imitating scambaiters!

You have to be CAREFUL.   Be alert  – gosh, I’m sorry to say this – if any person you talk to from “support” etc. has a strong non-American accent of any kind, a glancing swipe at correct English, and who seemed tunneled in on a script, telling you repeatedly to do certain things and saying not to pay attention to incoming calls.

Those safety points scratch the surface.

Looking out for you as I know you would look out for me.


Posted in Semper Paratus, Si vis pacem para bellum! | Tagged

17 July – St. Vincent de Paul, confessor… and slave… really

Did you know that Vincent was once an arrogant climber who was ordained at 19 years old?

Did you know that St. Vincent de Paul was captured by pirates and sold into slavery for a couple of years? His last owner was a fallen Franciscan priest who had converted to Islam and had three wives. Vincent converted them and they got back to Europe.

Did you know that Vincent was also chaplain to Henry VI’s wife and a member of Louis XIII’s Privy Council… as was Card. Richelieu? The Cardinal in his finery and Vincent in his grubby cassock from off the street.

Today is the feast of the great St. Vincent de Paul.  Here is his entry in the Roman Martyrology, which really doesn’t say much about him:

Memoria sancti Vincentii de Paul, qui, spiritu sacerdotali plenus, Parisiis in Gallia pauperibus addictus, in facie qualiscumque dolentis vultum agnoscebat Domini sui; ad formam primitivae Ecclesiae instaurandam, clerum sancte formandum et pauperes sublevandos Congregationem Missionis instituit et, sancta Ludovica de Marillac cooperante, Congregationem etiam Puellarum a Caritate.

Here’s my 1st class relic of St. Vincent de Paul.

Posted in Saints: Stories & Symbols |

Have any of you been affected by the CrowdStrike debacle?

Have any of you been affected by the CrowdStrike debacle?

So far, I have not been.  I’m glad I’m not travelling today and I really feel for those who are.  I read that hospitals have been affected.  May God protect the patients.

Meanwhile, one of the guys in a nerdy signal group I am in posted:

What could go wrong?

Perhaps the one who failed to check the update could get a placement with a detail for Pres. Trump.




I priest friend wrote via Signal…

Posted in Global Killer Asteroid Questions |

Daily Rome Shot 1081 – Giving the shirt off my back!

Welcome registrant:
Et Cetera

Meanwhile, from the Babylon Bee

Demon Kinda Bummed To Be Cast Out In English Instead Of The Traditional Latin

FARGO, ND – Local demon Asmodeus has been cast out of yet another church in rural North Dakota after terrorizing the church members for several weeks. Before spreading his charred wings to fly off to the next town, he complained to local reporters that exorcisms just aren’t the same since they started doing them in English instead of Latin.

“Ey there, ya nasty spirit,” began Father Okanoke in his heavy Fargo accent. “What tha heck ya doin’ around ‘ere? This ain’t the appropriate place to be, ya know? Oh geez – better get on out to the next town, ey? I’ll cast ya out, you betcha!”

As the priest held out a crucifix and recited his own folksy version of the incantation, the evil spirit shrugged and shuffled out to the door with his head down.

“Whatever – I’ve been cast out before. Same deal as always.” said the malevolent servant of the Prince of Darkness. “But seriously – what happened to tradition? What happened to respect for the beauty of the ancient rite of exorcism spoken in traditional Latin? English just isn’t the same, you know? Would it kill people to learn a little Latin? Good grief!”

According to sources, the demon will be moving to somewhere he’ll feel more welcome, like Washington D.C.

In chessy news, in the strangely named CrunchLabs Masters on day two Fabi, my guy Wesley, Nepo Jan-Krzysztof Duda, and Dmitry Andreikin advanced to Division 1. This is a 7 day event, with a bracket format in three divisions that would take too long too explain. Suffice to say that if you lose a match, you drop to a lower bracket where you can fight your way back to the upper. This is what Hikaru now faces.

White to move and mate in 2.

NB: I’ll hold comments with solutions ’till the next day so there won’t be “spoilers” for others.

Priestly chess players, drop me a line. HERE

Please remember me when shopping online and use my affiliate links.  US HERE – UK HERE  WHY?  This helps to pay for health insurance (massively hiked for this new year of surprises), utilities, groceries, etc..  At no extra cost, you provide help for which I am grateful.

Hey Fathers!  How about a clerical Guayabera shirt for the hot summer days?

Our Price: $58.50 – Reg Price:$90.00

And there’s this:



Meanwhile, the TLM with Archbp. Cordileone at the Eucharistic Congress is jam packed

I’m sure more reports will come in.  I am interested in the sermon, if there is one.

Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Tagged ,

Daily Rome Shot 1080 – Another book!

How unhinged is the left?

Nice people! Great service!

It’s hard to come up with words about that.

The Biel Chess Festival continues today in Switzerland with various tournaments.  Meanwhile, the strangely named CrunchLabs Masters is on. It’s is the third leg of the 2024 Champions Chess Tour. Magnus MVL and “Puer” are in Division 1. Levon, Hikaru, Fabi and Nepo are also in.  Of course I am glad to see that my guy Wesley So is in Division 1 because of his qualification from the chess.com Classic.  Format is 10+2.  Alas, on the live stream we are subjected to the cranium-etching voice of Tania Sachdev.  Someone needs to give her some sort of filter for her mic to cut down on the upper end.  Good commentary (when not just repeating what the person before said).  Also commenting is Daniel Naroditsky.

Black to move and mate in 4.

1. Nd3+ Kd1 2. Nxf2+ Kc1 3. Nd3+ Kb1 4. Qf1#
NB: I’ll hold comments with solutions ’till the next day so there won’t be “spoilers” for others.

Please remember me when shopping online and use my affiliate links.  US HERE – UK HERE  WHY?  This helps to pay for health insurance (massively hiked for this new year of surprises), utilities, groceries, etc..  At no extra cost, you provide help for which I am grateful.

I received a copy of a new book from Sophia Press.

One Lord, One Faith, One Church: An Inconvenient Truth by Jesse Romero and Paul Zucarelli


The title trolls Al Gore!

The Introduction states that this book is written for people who have little if any, or even faulty, instruction in the faith. That’s a large target audience! They seek to show that the God initiated the Roman Catholic Church. The Church really is of divine origin… sorry!

I was struck that one of the first questions raised is “Who is Jesus?”

I am reminded of how my old pastor Msgr. Schuler, in view of the hideous St. Paul Seminary of the day and the feckless fruitless vocations efforts of the Archdiocese, made a speech to the local Serra club explaining that at the seminary and chancery they couldn’t answer three basic questions: “Who is Jesus? Who is the Church? Who is the priest?” They couldn’t easily get past the first one. So, how were they to foster vocations to the priesthood?

But I digress. That’s just to show how fundamental the question is.

Other questions are “Why is the Church in Rome?” and “Who is Peter?”

The rest of the book takes a mostly historical journey, well worth reviewing. Review… this is a good point. Even if you know this stuff already, it constitutes a good, dense, review.

This would be a good book for you friends or relatives (or YOU) who have fallen away from the Church into some Protestant sect.

There is nothing in it about the Novus and/or Vetus Ordo. There is very little about liturgy at all, expect for one significant phrase: “To understand the enormity of the Catholic Mass, one must understand that the heavenly liturgy and the earthly liturgy are one and the same.”

You wouldn’t know that from attended most suburban churches, although was you encounter would still affirm the Four Last Things, only differently.


Many thanks to people who have already sent donations for my stay in Rome in October and into November. I haven’t started the main effort yet, but these thoughtful readers have already chipped in via “wavy flag” and Zelle. Thank you.



Daily Rome Shot 1079 – PRIME DAY DEALS

Welcome registrants:

jen from Rochester

Many thanks to monthly donor TDS who moved from PayPal to Zelle on the same day of the month, 16th.  Also, thanks to NCS who inquired about moving from PayPal to Wise (international).    Zelle is good.  Wise is super for donations from outside these USA.  PS: I think today is the leanest day of the month.

White to move an mate in 3.

NB: I’ll hold comments with solutions ’till the next day so there won’t be “spoilers” for others.

Interested in learning?  Try THIS

Please remember me when shopping online and use my affiliate links.  US HERE – UK HERE  WHY?  This helps to pay for health insurance (massively hiked for this new year of surprises), utilities, groceries, etc..  At no extra cost, you provide help for which I am grateful.

It’s PRIME DAY. I saw lots of big discounts across a wide spectrum (also on items in my wishlist). I noticed that you all bought all the stock of the Sheen book, and they are restocking. Also, the book on the St. Benedict medal has done well.


17 July: Martyres of Compiègne: “Terror is nothing more than speedy, severe and inflexible justice; it is thus an emanation of virtue.”

Happy Feast of Blessed Teresa of St. Augustine and Companions, the Martyrs of Compiègne.  Carmelites.

In 1794, the Place de la Nation on the east side of Paris was called the Place du Trône-Renversé… Toppled Throne Square.

In 1792 a guillotine was set up here and the killing began.

Robespierre and Barère made terror an instrument of governance:

“Terror is nothing more than speedy, severe and inflexible justice; it is thus an emanation of virtue”, quoth Robespierre.

Plus ça change.  Could have been uttered in Texas… or the CDW… ooops… DDW.

On 17 July of this same year, 1794, 11 Discalced Carmelite nuns of the Carmel of Compiègne, together with three lay sisters and two tertiaries were guillotined and buried in a mass grave in the nearby Picpus Cemetery. They had for a while been living with English Benedictine nuns, who were forbidden their native England. The Carmelites dedicated themselves to prayer for the restoration of peace in France and for the Church. Hence, they were arrested, shifted to Paris, and publicly murdered for the encouragement of the mob.

As the Carmelite nuns, aged 30 to 78, went to the razor, they renewed their vows and sang the either the Salve Regina or the Veni Creator Spiritus, accounts vary.

One by one they knelt before the prioress and asked permission to die.

“Permission to die, Mother?”
“Go, my daughter!”

Here is the dramatized scene.

Again, in close proximity, Carmelites and oppression.

Posted in Modern Martyrs, Saints: Stories & Symbols | Tagged

16 July 1969 – LIFTOFF!

16 July 1969 – 55 years ago

Before implementation of the Novus Ordo, btw, although changes were underway.

Posted in Just Too Cool, Look! Up in the sky! | Tagged

UPDATED: Attempted assassination of Pres. Trump at rally in Butler, PA. Trump wounded. 13 July 1917… Third Secret. Just wondering….

UPDATE 17 July:

A reader sent me a screen shot of how the Fatima scene at the nearby parish, the assassin’s position and Trump’s podium line up.

UPDATE 15 July:

I just received this in my email:

Message Body:
Not sure if I can send you photos. I did some research. The Catholic Church that is across the street from the Butler fairgrounds has an outdoor grotto to Our Lady of Fatima and the visionaries. The statue of Our Lady faces in the direction of the fairgrounds. I don’t really believe in coincidence anymore.

Our Lady of Fatima, again.  I looked it up.  HERE


UPDATE: I just remembered that, after Pres. Trump went to N. Korea in 2018 and met with King Jong Un, the former President stopped in Guam.  Our Lady of  Fatima showed up!   I wrote about it at the time, but I can’t find it. However, The Remnant has it HERE:

Last week President Trump received a scapular and a lesson on Fatima from Edward Baza Calvo, governor of Guam since 2011.

“About 165,000 people have taken a big sigh of relief since ten months ago the leader of North Korea was making pronouncements of the nuclear annihilation of our island,” says Gov. Calvo in the short clip below from PacificDailyNews.com. “And now we have, ten months later, a document paving the way–signed by both [Trump and Kim Jong-un]–to peace and denuclearization,”

A year ago, when this crisis was unfolding, the traveling Lady of Fatima had just come from Korea to Guam, and fifteen minutes after Trump signed the agreement with Kim Jong-un, the statue arrived at the house of Governor Calvo. Being Catholic, he said, “I don’t believe in coincidences.”

In gratitude to both Our Lady of Fatima and the U.S. President, Gov. Calvo handed Trump a scapular and told him that Catholics, such as Melania, would understand its significance.


Surely you’ve heard the news about the assassination attempt, so I won’t recap it.

I was just hanging out in Pittsburgh with the priest who gave the invocation AT THAT RALLY.   He gave the invocation, told people around him to PRAY for the man because someone was going to try to shoot him.  20 minutes later….

That said, people started pinging me on phone and email about this immediately after I had read a story about the 3rd apparition of Our Lady of Fatima on 13 July 1917.  (As one does.)

This was the apparition with the vision of Hell and the the future role of Russia.   This is the apparition of the “Third Secret”, which would not be revealed until Sr. Lúcia wrote them down in 1941 at the request of the bishop.  The third part, the “Third Secret”, was only later sent to the bishop who sent it unread to Pope Pius XII.

In case you have never read it, or of it, here is what Lúcia wrote.  No, it doesn’t have anything to do with the assassination attempt, but it is a good moment to get you to read about the apparition and the Third Secret if you haven’t done so before:

A few moments after arriving at the Cova da Iria, near the holmoak, where a large number of people were praying the Rosary, we saw the flash of light once more, and a moment later Our Lady appeared on the holmoak.

“Lúcia,” Jacinta said, “speak. Our Lady is talking to you.”

“Yes?” said Lúcia. She spoke humbly, asking pardon for her doubts with every gesture, and to the Lady: “What do you want of me?”

I want you to come back here on the thirteenth of next month. Continue to say the Rosary every day in honor of Our Lady of the Rosary, to obtain the peace of the world and the end of the war, because only she can obtain it.

“Yes, yes.”

“I would like to ask who you are, and if you will do a miracle so that everyone will know for certain that you have appeared to us.”

You must come here every month, and in October I will tell you who I am and what I want. I will then perform a miracle so that all may believe.

Thus assured, Lúcia began to place before the Lady the petitions for help that so many had entrusted to her. The Lady said gently that she would cure some, but others she would not cure.

“And the crippled son of Maria da Capelinha?”

No, neither of his infirmity nor of his poverty would he be cured, and he must be certain to say the Rosary with his family every day.

Another case recommended by Lúcia to the Lady’s assistance was a sick woman from Atougia who asked to be taken to heaven.

Tell her not to be in a hurry. Tell her I know very well when I shall come to fetch her.

Make sacrifices for sinners, and say often, especially while making a sacrifice: O Jesus, this is for love of Thee, for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for offences committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

[First Part of the Secret – The Vision of Hell]

As Our Lady spoke these words she opened her hands once more, as had during the two previous months. The rays of light seemed to penetrate the earth, and we saw as it were a sea of fire. Plunged in this fire were demons and souls in human form, like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, floating about in the conflagration, now raised into the air by the flames that issued from within themselves together with great clouds of smoke, now following back on every side like sparks in huge fires, without weight or equilibrium, amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair, which horrified us and made us tremble with fear. (it must have been this sight which caused me to cry out, as people say they heard me do). The demons could be distinguished by their terrifying and repellent likeness to frightful and unknown animals, black and transparent like burning coals. terrified and as if to plead for succor, we looked up at Our Lady, who said to us, so kindly and so sadly:

[Second Part of the Secret]

You have seen hell, where the souls of poor sinners go. It is to save them that God wants to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If you do what I tell you, many souls will be saved, and there will be peace.

This war will end, but if men do not refrain from offending God, another and more terrible war will begin during the pontificate of Pius XI. When you see a night that is lit by a strange and unknown light [this occurred on January 28, 1938], you will know it is the sign God gives you that He is about to punish the world with war and with hunger, and by the persecution of the Church and the Holy Father.

To prevent this, I shall come to the world to ask that Russia be consecrated to my Immaculate Heart, and I shall ask that on the First Saturday of every month Communions of reparation be made in atonement for the sins-of the world. If my wishes are fulfilled, Russia will be converted and there will be peace; if not, then Russia will spread her errors throughout the world, bringing new wars and persecution of the Church; the good will be martyred and the Holy Father will have much to suffer; certain nations will be annihilated. But in the end my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she will be converted, and the world will enjoy a period of peace. In Portugal the faith will always be preserved…

[Third Part of the Secret – Congregation for Doctrine of the Faith, “The Message of Fátima”]


{After the two parts which I have already explained, at the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendor that Our Lady radiated towards him from her right hand: pointing to the earth with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: ‘Penance, Penance, Penance!’.

And we saw in an immense light that is God: ‘something similar to how people appear in a mirror when they pass in front of it’ a Bishop dressed in white; ‘we had the impression that it was the Holy Father’. Other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious going up a steep mountain, at the top of which there was a big Cross of rough-hewn trunks as of a cork-tree with the bark; before reaching there the Holy Father passed through a big city half in ruins and half trembling with halting step, afflicted with pain and sorrow, he prayed for the souls of the corpses he met on his way; having reached the top of the mountain, on his knees at the foot of the big Cross, he was killed by a group of soldiers who fired bullets and arrows at him, and in the same way there died one after another the other Bishops, Priests, men and women Religious, and various lay people of different ranks and positions. Beneath the two arms of the Cross there were two Angels each with a crystal aspersorium in his hand, in which they gathered up the blood of the Martyrs and with it sprinkled the souls that were making their way to God.}


Remember, you must not tell this to anyone except Francisco.

When you pray the Rosary, say after each mystery: O my Jesus, forgive us, save us from the fire of hell. Lead all souls to heaven, especially those who are most in need.

“Is there anything more that you want of me?”

No, I do not want anything more of you today.

Then as before Our Lady began to ascend towards the east, until she finally disappeared in the immense darkness of the firmament.


Is anyone else seeing Iwo Jima?


Posted in I'm just askin'... | Tagged

Daily Rome Shot 1078

Continued from yesterday…

Let’s see the text…



Lovely!  Who would like to render this into accurate and yet smooth English?

Please remember me when shopping online and use my affiliate links.  US HERE – UK HERE  WHY?  This helps to pay for health insurance (massively hiked for this new year of surprises), utilities, groceries, etc..  At no extra cost, you provide help for which I am grateful.

And… considering the ramp up of the demonic these days:

The Cross and Medal of Saint Benedict: A Mystical Sign of Divine Power edited by Fr. Robert Nixon, OSB.


This is a handy volume with quotes from famous saints and writers about Benedict, a hagiographical account of his  life, a brief account of the Order and then a detailed look at the St. Benedict Medal.

Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Tagged

Opinion piece at NatCathReg about ‘Traditionis custodes’ three years on

I was made aware of a piece published last week by the National Catholic Register by Larry Chapp about Traditionis custodes three years on.  I was on the road, so I stashed it for a bit.

I was at first rather enthusiastic about Larry Chapp and his videos.  At a certain point I stopped watching them not just because they were a bit long, but also because he seems all too frequently to run down the Vetus Ordo and, by implication, those who wanted it.  It seemed that, for a while, every video got around to this even though the topic was entirely different.  Hence, he lost my regular attention and I only checked on him when his guest was of special interest.

That said, his offering at the NCReg is excellent, both in its points and in its phrasing. I’m sure you will agree.

Let’s go through this with my emphases and comments.

Pope Francis’ Latin Mass ‘Motu Proprio’ Has Generated Division, Not Unity

Three years after the promulgation of the motu proprio Traditionis Custodes, imposing severe restrictions on the celebration of the Mass in Latin, controversy over the use of the old Latin Mass is as strong as ever.

Therefore, if Pope Francis’ text was intended to bring some measure of peace to the liturgy wars by increasing liturgical homogenization around the Mass of Paul VI, it has been a failure. The rise of the popularity of the Mass of St. John XXIII (traditional Latin Mass) was caused, at least in part, by a strong sense of dissatisfaction with the Mass of St. Paul VI (or Novus Ordo) among a broad cross section of regular-Mass-attending Catholics. [And not just because of the externals or aesthetics, which of course flow also from the content of the texts.] And the move to suppress the Latin Mass has done nothing to change that entrenched reality, [“entrenched”… okay, there is a bellicose aspect to what is going on.  He probably intends this in the sense of “deeply committed”, but when people are shooting at you, you dig fox holes.] especially in light of the fact that the Vatican did nothing at the same time to reform the new liturgy in order to address in a truly pastoral way the legitimate sense of disaffection that many have.  [The incredible abuses that can occur so easily via the Novus Ordo are one thing, but there are aspects of the rite itself which can leave one puzzled.]

It is rarely a wise pastoral move to try and suppress via raw authority from above the spontaneous expressions of faith — expressions that are thoroughly orthodox and truly “from below” — since such exercises of raw authority absent a true engagement with those affected usually flounder.

The popularity of the traditional Latin Mass can be tied directly to its emphasis upon reverence, transcendence and supernatural verticality. And these are features that should be present in every Mass but are sorely lacking in many parishes. It is instructive that wherever the Mass of Paul VI is celebrated in deeply traditional and transcendent ways it is almost always successful, which only underscores the legitimacy of the desire of millions of devout Catholics for a Mass that is more profoundly reverent.  [It also underscores the fact that the more the Novus Ordo is celebrated like the Vetus Ordo, the better it seems to be.  That raises an obvious question.  Let me turn the sock inside out.  Benedict XVI wrote of ars celebrandi.  There are things learned from the predominance of the Novus Ordo which I believe have informed the ars celebrandi of most priests who celebrate the Vetus.  This is positive, perhaps in the sense of Tolkien’s eucatastrophe.]

Therefore, if the aims of Traditiones Custodes were primarily pastoral and not punitive, [then] it is a failure, since it did not in any way address this deep desire for tradition and reverence from so many Catholics. And since it ignored the needs and wishes of the faithful, [as a result] it created large pockets of open hostility toward the Vatican. This is understandable since the text was promulgated without any pastoral accompaniment with the affected groups or any sense that their liturgical preferences mattered at all on any level[Call to mind the pure contempt toward the people who want the Vetus Ordo exhibited by Andrea Grillo in that telling interview.]

Labeled as nostalgic “backwardists” and tossed out to the ecclesial peripheries, lovers of the Latin Mass were simply abandoned by this papacy and then vilified.  [Weren’t those on the peripheries supposed to be important?] Furthermore, the effective suppression of the older Mass went forward despite strong local support for its continuance from many diocesan bishops, which raises the question of how such an authoritarian move can be squared with all of the rhetoric from Rome about the need for a more synodal Church. [Not to mention subsidiarity.]

Where is the episcopal collegiality? Where is the much ballyhooed accompaniment? Where is the desire to “smell like the sheep”? And one can hardly see a synodal Church in play here when the Vatican went so far as to tell local parishes what they could and could not publish in their Church bulletins about Mass times for the old Mass. This is centralized Roman authority in the extreme and, therefore, Traditionis Custodes calls into question the sincerity of the entire synodal process.  [It leaves me puzzled how those who are in charge of things do not see this double standard.]

Pope Francis has repeatedly said that everyone is welcome in the Church (“Todos! Todos!” in Spanish), and he has made this call for radical inclusion in a variety of settings. The implication, of course, is that pastors must be tolerant toward human sin and the foibles of our fallen nature, ever aware of the woundedness of all of us. However, when it comes to those traditional Catholics who have been wounded by a Church insensitive to their needs, and often to the point of open hostility, there is nothing but a slap with the back of the Vatican hand[Am I wrong, or is there a silent implication that desiring the Vetus Ordo and then acting on that desire by going to it, is looked at as being worse than committing sodomy?  Recently, Card. Müller said he spoke with an official of the liturgy office in Rome who suggested that such people had psychological problems.]

There were, and are, problems in some traditionalist parishes with the acceptance of Vatican II, and many traditionalists on social media are often harsh toward the modern Church. [It would be helpful to have some terms defined.  Who is a “traditionalist” and what is the “modern Church”.] Nevertheless, one can clearly detect an increase in such attitudes as a direct response to the theological and pastoral confusions created by this papacy.

A Church that understands this human psychological factor would therefore also understand that the problem of truly radical traditionalism [Again, it could be helpful to have a description of what a “rad trad” is.  I think I know… but when I think more about such a critter, I wonder if I am on target.] is in many ways a beast of this papacy’s own making. Summorum Pontificum, the motu proprio issued in 2007 by Pope Benedict XVI, in allowing for a broad and free use of the old Mass, sought to build bridges. In contrast, this papacy seems to want to burn that particular bridge while building other bridges to different constituencies.  [My experience was that, after some years of Summorum Pontificum being in effect, people were starting to unclench, even those who had been so badly injured in the years before.]

Along these lines it becomes glaringly obvious that the Vatican now is far more concerned about the problems in traditionalist circles (and the problems are real) [What are the “real” problems?  Does he mean that there are some who don’t like Francis or who deny that he is Pope?  Do deny the legitimacy of Vatican II?  Are the problems that they don’t give to Peter’s Pence or diocesan drives any longer?  What is a “circle”?  My experience is that those who attend the Vetus Ordo are a pretty diverse group.] than it is with the problems within more progressive Catholic parishes and dioceses.  [Would those problems be along the lines of barely any time for confession, few people using that essential sacrament while still going to Communion?  Perhaps not believing in the Real Presence?  Not going to Mass?  Not marrying in the Church or teaching children the catechism?   Shall we talk about liturgy and preaching?] There is an obvious double standard in play. Furthermore, this double standard becomes more problematic when one realizes that the wing of the Church that openly dissents from settled Church teaching in moral matters is far more prevalent and far more influential in the Church than are the small pockets of cranky traditionalists. [Not all “traditionalists” are “cranky”.  I like Scott Hahn’s threefold “mad trads – sad trads – and glad trads”.    The vast majority of “trads” I know are “glad trads”.  They aren’t all that concerned with the old controversies and issues flowing from those halcyon days of the Council and after.]

Meanwhile, the Germans continue on unabated with their heterodox Synodal WayCardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich (who dissents from the Church’s teaching on homosexuality) is put in charge of the synod; Cardinal Robert McElroy is given a red hat despite his public dissent from Church teaching on the same; and Jesuit Father James Martin is given yet more photo ops with the Pope.  [This is a good paragraph.   The main issue is support of homosexuality.  It is likely that those who are entrenched in the homosexualist agenda hate and fear the Vetus Ordo and the people who desire it, because of the content of the orations and because of the happiness and normalcy of those who attend to them.] I am not claiming that Pope Francis agrees with these folks in all ways, because he clearly doesn’t. But he is also clearly far more sympathetic to them than he is toward those in his flock who seek nothing more than liturgical sacredness and sanity.  [He does surround himself with people who align with that agenda.  Didn’t he just name Msgr Maurizio Chiodi who has suggested that homosexual acts are not sinful and who is in support of contraception?  There’s Archbp. Paglia, whose artistic proclivities are known.   Fr. Spadaro is not editor of La Civiltà Cattolica and longer, but he is now an official of the Dicastery for Culture and Education.  He has a website dedicated to  Pier Antonio Tondelli.]

[Now a shift…] There is also a level of mischaracterization of the typical Latin Mass participant that can be detected as the motivation behind Traditionis. My experiences here are purely anecdotal, but most of my Latin Mass-going friends are not radical traditionalists. They are simply devout Catholics seeking a safe space to raise their children away from our pornified cultural septic tank, [!] and they are not in any way deeply concerned with Vatican II and all the debates around it.  [Again, I am not sure what “radical” means.  Does it mean that these people would strongly rather attend the Vetus Ordo or they refuse to attend the Novus Ordo?  I want to know.  In my anecdotal experience, which I suspect is somewhat more extensive that Dr. Chapp’s when it comes to mingling with people who seek out the Vetus Ordo, they are as the Doctor says: devout, earnest, and not heavily burdened by controversies.]

They don’t really care about pachamamaAmoris Laetitia, Archbishop Viganò or the Synod on Synodality. [I think they care when the topics come up, because they are horrified by idolatry, moral relativism, and punitive behavior.] In fact, most probably don’t even know what the synod is or what it is for and don’t really care one way or the other. [Heh… does anyone understand?] In short, they are not the ideologically driven pitchfork brigade of heresy-hunting reactionaries that the mischaracterizations would have us believe. Furthermore, in a truly synodal Church, it would seem that the few instances where such a radicalized element does exist should be dealt with by the local bishop involved[RIGHT?!?  If these people are such a problem then they need PASTORS not POGROMS.]

In many ways, therefore, Traditionis Custodes represents a solution for a problem that does not exist in any meaningful sense. It is a motu proprio oriented to combating a straw-man caricature of the angry and hostile traditionalists who are supposedly lurking around every corner[Well said.]

Finally, the promulgation of Traditionis took place after the Vatican received back the results of a questionnaire it had sent out to the bishops. But the results of that survey have never been made public, even with the names of the bishops redacted, which also calls into question the transparency of the entire process. [Just as transparent as the accord with a certain Asian regime.] If the problems among traditionalists that Traditionis seeks to address via suppression of the old Mass are widespread and metastasizing further, then one can only assume that this would have been brought up by many bishops in the survey results. And if that is true, then surely the Vatican would want to make those results known in order to give Traditionis a grounding in a more episcopally collegial manner.   [ERGO…]

Therefore, since the results were never published, the question of just how widespread the problems are in Latin Mass communities is left hanging. Indeed, the silence and lack of transparency give the definite impression that there is something the Vatican is trying to hide.

I myself do not attend the traditional Latin Mass and I have no particular attachment to it. [He should give it a shot, and not just a couple times.  It’s our patrimony.  It would help to grasp even more fully the rite of the Ordinariate and what is going on, and not going on, in the Novus Ordo.] Nevertheless, there are millions of devout and deeply sane Catholics who do love it. I see no reason why a pastoral Church that seeks out the peripheries would want to alienate them and push them away.  [One might conclude that those who are carrying on this alienation are not pastoral and don’t intended to be.] Thus, I think Summorum Pontificum was pastorally sensitive and wise. And I think Traditionis Custodes is pastorally insensitive and unwise, now and when it was first published three years ago.

This was a good piece by Dr. Chapp.  There are some loose ends.  That said, no limited essay can say everything or engage in explanations of every possible detail.

St. Pius V, pray for us.
Our Lady of Mount Carmel, pray for us.

Posted in Liturgy Science Theatre 3000, Si vis pacem para bellum!, The Coming Storm, The Drill, The future and our choices | Tagged

NEW BOOK: On The Demonic by Archbp. Fulton Sheen. BONUS: Wherein Fr. Z rants.

I bring to you attention a new book published by Emmaus Press, a branch of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology.

This title will be released on July 17, 2024.  PRE-ORDER

On The Demonic by Archbp. Fulton J. Sheen.

US HERE – UK HERE (not yet)

The forward explains that, toward the end of his life, Sheen was ever more convinced that we are living in a demonic age and that we may be seeing the “first cells of the Anti-Christ”.

He wrote that he wanted to write a book about the demonic, but he passed away before he could accomplish it.   The editor of this book has gone through all of Sheen’s material and collated what he found about the topic.

The volume includes not only excerpts from known published works but also from Sheen’s own handwritten notes, kept in his archive, for conferences, etc.

This book is

the closest thing the world will ever see to the long-lost book that Fulton Sheen promised to write on the demonic, all in Sheen’s own words.

The editor stays true to what Sheen wrote adding, “I’m a purist. I don’t even like the addition of the designated hitter in baseball.”


Hence, while he includes helpful explanatory footnotes, he does not over edit.  He includes,

Commenting on Jesus’ intellect and ability to learn, St. Thomas Aquinas argues that there is a direct correspondence between higher forms of learning and the amount effort one has to put into obtaining such knowledge.

I can attest that that is true from my frustrating study of chess openings.  And that’s just chess.   But, as the editor says,

“There’s grace in wrestling with thoughts.”

Click for Z-Swag

This could be applied to the issue of our sacred liturgical worship since the Council’s reforms. 

The constant effort with the Novus Ordo has been to make everything immediately apparent, visible, audible, comprehensible.  One could say, it has been dumbed down.  The reformers and liturgists now have made it unnecessary to  “work”, contrary to the fact that the very word “liturgy” means “work” (Greek leitos from laos (people) and ergon (work, service)).  Moreover, it means “work for the people”, not “by the people”.  Apply that to overrun sanctuaries and versus populum misorientation.  Also, “hard” concepts like sin, guilt, and propitiation were systematically edited out of the orations in favor of emphasizing eschatological joy.  If you change the way people pray, over time you change what they believe and how they live – Lex Orandi – Lex Credendi.  Much of what we see going on in the Church today is a result of the erosion of our Catholic identity, resting on the foundation of liturgical worship (which is doctrine!).  Loss of identity creates an ever widening spiral of erosion which carries over to the influence of the Church in the public square.  If we don’t know who we are and what we believe, if we are not longer able or willing to enunciate it clearly and manifest it in life, then why should the wider world pay any attention to us at all, unless to mock or persecute.  The consequences of making everything easy in our worship has been devastating, leaving little or no opportunity for people to have a transformational encounter with mystery, the transcendent.

Also, the editor, a priest, at the beginning of the Forward gives a caveat about being overly interested in things demonic.  At the end he pens,

I ask that you do not read this book like some novel, just for entertainment.  I also ask that you do not read it like a school-book, just for information.  This book should be read in prayer, with your eyes on Jesus.

Do I hear an “Amen!”?

This would be a good book for priests and for bishops.  Especially for bishops, since they are truly the chief exorcists of their dioceses.   However, all priests can perform the minor exorcisms without additional permissions, including, privately, Ch. 3 of Title XI in the Roman Ritual.

Posted in REVIEWS, SESSIUNCULA, The Campus Telephone Pole, Wherein Fr. Z Rants | Tagged
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Daily Rome Shot 1077

In chessy news, the Biel Festival is underway.  Biel, Switzerland is a beautiful place.  It would be fun to participate in something like this.  Next year?   Hard.  It would be at the same time at the priests conference held by the St. Paul Center.

Nice people! Great service!

Fabiano Caruana won the Zagreb Rapid and Blitz and matched Magnus Carlsen’s 27 points record.  My guy Wesley So would up in a three-way tie for second along with MVL and “Puer””. Ian Nepomniachtchi had a rough go. A couple days ago, in a blitz with Wesley, he raised a fuss because he ran out of time (aka “flagged”). He blamed Wesley for having knocked over a couple of pieces and replacing them. However, the video shows that he just simply flagged. Nepo also accused Wesley of doing this before to him, as if it were a planned accident. Yesterday, when Nepo and Wesley played, Nepo – all caught on camera of course – purposely plowed into Wesley’s pieces, which had to be reset. Wesley smiled and then beat him.

White to move and mate in 2.

NB: I’ll hold comments with solutions ’till the next day so there won’t be “spoilers” for others.

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Many thanks to people who have already sent donations for my stay in Rome in October and into November. I haven’t started the main effort yet, but these thoughtful readers have already chipped in via “wavy flag” and Zelle. Thank you.


Meanwhile, David Bowie and Catherine Deneuve playing chess on the set of The Hunger in 1983.

Posted in SESSIUNCULA | Tagged

I’ve been indulging in something I haven’t done for quite a while.  (Yes, that’s click bait, but I think I am fully justified.)

I’ve been indulging in something I haven’t done for quite a while.

Today I watched some videos on YouTube of “scambaiters” torturing scammers, wasting their time, completely controlling their computers, screwing with the phone systems and frustrating them in their purely evil greed.

The scammers can get pretty violent in their reactions when they reach maximum frustration.

Usually the scambaiter will, in the end, reveal that this has been cat and mouse role reversal and then, perhaps far more kindly than I would, suggest they find something else to do.

In the meantime, I’ve learned a lot about the types of scams that are being run and their techniques.

As I have opined before, I wonder if we might not create an order of Cyber Knights – the Order of the Cyber Knights of St. Dismas – which would have Virtual Machines and VPNs by which scammers could be taken in and taken down.

Someone needs to fight back against this sheer evil industry.

Bottom line, just as you have to be avoid near occasions of sin, you have to be on your guard against scams.   They are clever and there are many approaches that they use.   Often they will want you to install a program like Anydesk on your computer and then go into your online banking.   Sometimes they will pretend you have a bill to pay.  Sometimes they will say that they made a mistake and gave you too much money back and then ask you to pay them back by buying gift cards.   There are more scams, too, and some of them quite sophisticated.   They even have one where they get you to call your real bank and then when you are being transferred, they take back the call and pretend to be an official from that bank.  Very slick.

Be careful.

Someone quite close to me got taken in by one of these slimy bastards.   I don’t want any of you to get taken.


Funny.  I just received this.  Clearly, this is a scam. Screenshot of the email…

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