Deus lo vult

You might pop over to Standing On My Head and read about Fr. Longenecker’s new project:  a book about the romantic side of Catholicism.

Here is a little excerpt of his entry, which nods in the direction of WDTPRS.

I with a courtly nod I tip my biretta to Father and his gallant effort:

I am inspired in this effort by all those priests who proudly wear ridiculous clothes like cassocks and capes. Are they not the last vestigial vestments of the romantic heroes of old? I write as a salute to monks in cowls and Cardinals in Cappa Magnas, a pope who wears (like Dorothy) ruby slippers that might just carry him home. I write to honor clergy in lace cottas and Monsignors who hold their heads high as they wear sashes of scarlet and birettas with purple pompons. I write to honor the Knights of Columbus with their capes, their swords and their pomade hats.

I salute all those who, like the mouse Reepicheep, fight the giants of the day, or like the boy David, slay the Philistines. The book will be about just that–the need to fight the good fight and be a romantic warrior in a world of useful things. It will encourage us all to find the key to the costume cupboard, dust off that cape, shine the broadsword, don the rubber nose and false moustache and the broad brimmed hat, replace the white plume and be a liturgical Lancelot or a ceremonial Cyrano de Bergerac.

In fact, once the book is done I may start a new religious order: "Bergeracian Knights of the Sacred Liturgy" Our sole plan will be to save the world through beauty – the highest beauty being that of the ancient and sacred sacrifice of the Mass. We will wear lace cottas beneath our armor and will wield sacramentarys for swords. We will bear white plumes on our saturnos and our motto will be Fr Z’s "Save the Liturgy, Save the World."

To which I respond:

Deus lo vult!


Father should know that I have for a long while thought it would be good to have a new order called The Rubricians.

They would sally forth, two by two, into the world, to make Christ known and loved by teaching and correcting rubrics for Holy Church’s liturgy.   Their habits would be Roman cassocks trimmed in red, and they would be fearless in the face of illicit creativity and the hostility born of aging-hippie baggage or ignorance.  Supporting them in this vital crusade would be the indefatigable Sacristines.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. David Andrew says:

    Rubricians? Sign me up for the Third Order!

  2. Flambeaux says:

    I’m never sure whether or not Fr. L is serious or mocking when he discusses traditional things.

  3. David Andrew says:

    His “romantic notions” are not unlike my own in a small way.

    One spring I was in my home town, and not having a church music post at the time, was invited by my good friend at the local Catholic church to assist during Holy Week. On Easter Sunday I walked from my parents’ home to the church, wearing a fadora and carrying a walking stick that belonged to my grandfather.

    When I walked in, I removed my hat, and proceeded to hang it up. I was told by one person, “Nobody wears a fadora and carries a walking stick anymore!” I said, “Yes, and nobody tips their baseball cap at an elder, or removes it in church; nobody holds the door for others; nobody says ‘yes ma’am’ or ‘yes sir.’ I guess being a gentleman has gone out of style. . . it’s too romantic.”

    I’m down for the struggle!

  4. Marnie says:

    Great comic book idea. I’d buy it for my son! Just wondering who would be worthy to play Might Caped Rubrician and his faithful sidekick Sacritine in the adapted movie version?

  5. Fr. Michael Darcy says:

    Should we wear cassock and capella romana for the blognic tonight? Mine are dusty from fear of persecution.

  6. Christabel says:

    Sign me up as an aspirant Sacristine please! Mantilla, starch and iron at the ready.

  7. Agnes says:

    You really are nothing but Pez dispensers of Sancyifying Grace.

    Ah, but my heroes, my heroes….

    (I’m just loving this…)

    Sally forth for the Divine! To Victory! Eternity! Huzzah!

  8. Maureen says:

    Father has the gift of delight in God’s sacred work. Sometimes he shows this through solemnity; sometimes he laughs with glee.

    As a professional Irishwoman, I approve. :)

  9. Richard says:

    I have a hard time thinking Jesus would do anything but laugh hysterically at all this posturing. I think He even said something to the Pharasees about their obsession with dress, etc.

  10. Richard: I think you need to expand your mind, heart and sense of humor.

    But in the spirit of your humorless observation… you have fallen into heresy.

    Jesus is a Divine Person, God and man. He was and is perfect, sinless. He had and had no flaws in His intellect, will or His ability to control His passions or appetites.

    He never does or did anything hysterically, much less laugh hysterically.

  11. Emilio III says:

    Richard, I agree that Jesus would laugh, but think He would also enjoy it. “Did you recognize that hippy subdeacon? He looked strangely familiar.”

  12. Richard A says:

    I have to tell you about my brother in Wisconsin who has friend in his parish who is a tall red-haired truck driver of Irish extraction. One Sunday he – the truck driver – shows up at Mass in a really sharp 3-piece suit, and my brother compliments it and asks what’s the occasion? “I’m starting a new project.” “What’s that?” “Restoring Western Civilization!” A project worthy of us all!

  13. John P says:

    Dieu le veult?

  14. B. says:

    I have a hard time thinking Jesus would do anything but laugh hysterically at all this posturing. I think He even said something to the Pharasees about their obsession with dress, etc.

    And he saith to him: Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? But he was silent. Then the king said to the waiters: Bind his hands and feet, and cast him into the exterior darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

    Do I get a price for expert out-of-context bible quoting? ;-)

  15. Deacon Nathan Allen says:

    Their motto: “NOBODY crosses the Rubricians!”

  16. Mike D. says:

    It was precisely this love of pomp, pagentry and ceremony that made me terribly excited when I found out I had been nominated and approved for membership in The Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre. I thought, “Wow, this is something, to be a knight of the church in a true, recognized, order of chivalry, defending the church in the world!” I was let down a bit when I found that most of the other knights I’ve met seem to think of the order as more of a social club than anything else. I guess I’m too much of a romantic!

  17. Antiquarian says:

    Not all Knights of the Holy Sepulchre regard it as a social club, Mike D.– plenty of us take the responsibility, and the work, quite seriously. (But, to keep this on topic, I do regret the current disuse of the old uniform, with much braid and plumed hat, in the US.)

  18. Flambeaux, I am as serious as Fr Brown. Professional Irishwoman Maureen, thank you for recognizing the seriousness of solemnity.

  19. Charivari Rob says:

    Deacon Nathan Allen – “Their motto: “NOBODY crosses the Rubricians!” ”

    Not until the die is cast, anyway.

  20. Mike B. says:

    Bravo, Father, Bravo!

    Your post and the comments above remind me of a passage in Hawthorne’s wonderful short story “The Artist of the Beautiful,” words that we could easily apply to Our Lord and his glorious act of love which we reenact in the Holy Sacrifice of The Mass:

    “for if I strive to put the very spirit of Beauty into form, and give it motion, it is for thy sake alone.”



  21. Derik says:

    I want to be enlisted in the third order rubricians too. As a side note, my neighbors in my apartment complex had a hard time understanding why is that I dress up for Sunday Mass. Sometimes I think that the expression “Sunday best clothes” is dying, but I find it so appropriate to dress up for High Mass, complete with my fedora, that I refuse to give up.

  22. Agnes says:

    If it is good, if it is true, if it is beautiful, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on these things… (paraphrasing St Paul). And I would do so with a dose of good humor. There’s no mockery. It’s just very beautiful and makes me twitter a little – so definitely set apart from the world. A priest is *sacerdos* – a giver of holy things.

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