11 Oct: St. John XXIII

Today is the feast of the Pope who issued the Apostolic Constitution Veterum Sapientia.

Today is the feast of the Pope who didn’t like it when people clapped in church.

Today is the feast of the Pope who issued the Roman Missal of St. John XXIII.

His propers are HERE.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    This is the pope who said, “”I always think of Pius IX of holy and glorious memory, and by imitating him in his sacrifices, I would like to be worthy to celebrate his canonization”. (journal of 1959)

  2. Clinton R. says:

    This is the Pope who celebrated exclusively the Mass Immemorial.
    This is the Pope who wore the Papal Tiara.

    St. John XXIII, pray for us. +JMJ+

  3. If we read The Tablet regularly, we also find out other amazing facts. For example, John XXIII was the first Pope to smile, ever. He was the first Pope to have human contact with the outside world, all previous Popes having been kept in a specially sealed container in the depths of the papal apartments. And he made contraception optional for all Catholics, and Marty Haugen hymns compulsory at all Masses attended by ten or more people.

    The poor man. Time for some reparation on his feast day.

  4. Anxious Anglican says:

    Thank you for the post, Father. I am not sure that the link to Veterum Sapientia is correct, but the text is available elsewhere on the web if not available at the site of the Holy See.

  5. John of Chicago says:

    And this is the Pope who wrote “Pacem in Terris” as his last will and testament… an encyclical addressed to “all men of good will” that is at least as urgent and compelling today as it was in 1963.

  6. gloriainexcelsis says:

    Today is also the Maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the feast instituted by Pope Pius XI in 1931, the year of my birth. It commemorates the Council of Ephesus (431) proclaiming Our Lady as “Mother of God.”

  7. aandreassi says:

    And the pope who convoked the Second Vatican Council which REFORMED the liturgy. Don’t forget that.

  8. aandreassi says:

    As far as Veterum Sapientia, it was pretty much universally ignored in the United States. At Dunwoodie, the professors tried to teaching in Latin for a few days but then just gave up. Just because you are a saint, doesn’t mean that you always made the most prudent decisions. Requiring all seminaries to hold instruction in Latin is just pretty much silly

  9. aandreassi says:

    Happy (first-ever) Feast of St. John XXIII, who wanted to “open the windows” to the church and let in some “fresh air.”
    October 11 was chosen as his feast day because on that date he opened the Second Vatican Council, in 1962. “Nowadays,” he said in his Opening Address, the church “prefers to make use of the medicine of mercy rather than that of severity. She consider that she meets the needs of the present day by demonstrating the validity of her teaching rather than by condemnations.”

  10. Random Friar says:

    Speaking of which, St. John XXIII specifically launched the Council on this date, as a way of placing it under the Maternal protection of Our Blessed Mother.

    St. John XXIII did not enter his heavenly reward on this date, but he is so linked to this council, and the feast of Mary, Mother of God being translated to January 1st, it was chosen to be his feast day.

  11. “And the pope who convoked the Second Vatican Council which REFORMED the liturgy. Don’t forget that.”

    Nor shall we forget that, a) he and most of the Council Fathers wanted a reform of the liturgy, but not the wholesale revision that occurred, b) he fired Annabale Bugnini who was later reinstated, and is considered by most as the catalyst of the official liturgical reform, and c) he was unashamedly traditional in his theology, contrary to popular belief.

  12. benedetta says:

    From his encyclical Pacem in Terris, St. John XXIII:

    16. The family, founded upon marriage freely contracted, one and indissoluble, must be regarded as the natural, primary cell of human society. The interests of the family, therefore, must be taken very specially into consideration in social and economic affairs, as well as in the spheres of faith and morals. For all of these have to do with strengthening the family and assisting it in the fulfilment of its mission.

    17. Of course, the support and education of children is a right which belongs primarily to the parents. (13)

    Regardless of the “liturgy warriors”, if the Church gets the above wrong, she fails everyone. Prayers for the Synod.

  13. benedetta says:

    Funny, when one reads the beautiful words, and sees the paternal care that St. John XXIII showed to his flock, one cannot help but be terrifically ashamed of the sight of his beloved Church from his vantage today…the man who said: “Human life is sacred; all men must recognize that fact. From its very inception it reveals the creating hand of God…”, for such a man, the state of a Church that is being bossed to pretend that it is not so, and from within even bullies others into quiet submission, in many cases still, impotent against the insatiable demand for tens of millions of babies gone in this country alone, surely from his vantage, though the liturgy indeed underwent reformation, he must weep for what has occurred. Such a man of great love for children and families could never support, given a horrible turn of direction taken in our own times, the idea that the Church must stay silent in the face of such breathtaking atrocity so as not to seem as one “condemning”.

    A day after the Nobel Peace prize was won by a female youth, we should all pause and realize that one may experience true Christian joy, the joy of the Gospel, and still at the same time rise to the responsibility of our times, and, even with other believers or unbelievers as the case may be in our pluralism, together condemn violence, war, coercion, all forms of inhuman manipulation, torture, and, the complicity of our wealthy society to snuff out tens of millions of lives deemed valuable only as throwaways to those with the power.

  14. benedetta says:

    Of course, the left wing of alinskyites within the Church may indeed “win” its sought after many millions of childrens slaughtered, a genocide, in the propping up of a status quo, and have its Lord of the Flies dance at the prospect of promoting a libertinism which damages childhood all the more…

    quid enim prodest homini si mundum universum lucretur animae vero suae detrimentum patiatur aut quam dabit homo commutationem pro anima sua

  15. cajuncath says:


    Unashamedly tradiitonal in his theology? That seems rather debatable. I would be interested in hearing from you how Pacem in Terris 14 is compatible with the traditional classical doctrinal teaching of the ages that preceded Pope John XXIII.

    Also, how would you explain his allowing periti to attend an ecumenical council who had been disciplined by the Church during the 1950s and were not required to renounce their dubious ideas and beliefs first? As well as how and why he presided over the abrogation of the council’s original schemas, all of which, as far as we can tell, were scrupulously crafted to completely conform to classical traditional Catholic doctrine?

  16. Happily, I had the opportunity to celebrate his feast in a celebration of Mass according to his missal — and not just any celebration, mind you. Yesterday His Excellency Andrew Cozzens, auxiliary bishop of the archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis, conferred the Sacrament of Confirmation to forty-odd in the forma antiquior, and afterward celebrated a missa pontificalis from the faldstool. He then led all in a solemn Te Deum. Oh, and this all happened in the Cathedral of St. Paul, the first TLM since the promulgation of the new Mass.

    What an experience.

    Many thanks to the FSSP for making the ceremonies possible; to the Church of All Saints, the FSSP presence in Minneapolis-St. Paul; and most of all to His Excellency, for being willing to confer and celebrate, and to the Archbishop for allowing it.

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