Rome – Day 6: Birthday and Mudbug

When I woke up this morning, I felt different. Then a bright light shone through the ceiling and a voice boomed:

Canon 1252 All persons who have completed their fourteenth year are bound by the law of abstinence; all adults are bound by the law of fast up to the beginning of their sixtieth year. Nevertheless, pastors and parents are to see to it that minors who are not bound by the law of fast and abstinence are educated in an authentic sense of penance.

Today is the beginning of my sixtieth year! Hence I am not any longer strictly bound to fast! I will anyway, but, there it is. Happy Birthday to me from the 1983 Code of Canon Law.

After the experience of the voice, I made my way to church where concelebration was going on, each priest at his altar saying Mass.

I saw in the sacristy a vestment with the arms of the FSSP today: nicely done, too.  We need more vestments with arms, especially personal coats of arms.

This, however, is the one I got.  An older one to be sure.  About my same age, as a matter of fact.

This one’s a lot older.

I have an idea about that.

We must find someone who does embroidery well.   Priests – who have arms – should then have their arms drawn up and made for their vestments.   Hmmm.

This is interesting.  Three priests with Scandinavian blood, three former Protestants, three dedicated to the traditional Roman Rite.

I took them for breakfast at a nearby bar and very much enjoyed this old sign.

The morning brought splendid Pontifical Mass at the faldstool.   I’ll find a link to better photos than I could have shot.

Then lunch.  This was a surprise!  I had no idea it would be like this: spaghetti all’astice with friends old and new.

Back to the parish for vespers, Exposition, the Litany of the Sacred Heart, Act of Consecration and Benediction.

Finally, having met with a new tailor I have sought some supper in the quiet of my digs, thus bringing this birthday in Rome to a close.

Please say a prayer for me.

Tomorrow afternoon I will say Mass for my benefactors.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Happy birthday, Fr. Z. Sto lat!

  2. Joy65 says:

    Father Z forgive me if this has been asked before—–when there a numerous Priests saying Mass at their individual altars all in the same location:
    1.) Do you celebrate the Mass out loud or silently? [Very quietly, just loud enough momentarily to cue a server if you have one.]
    2.) I see people in the pews do they go to receive Holy Communion from the Priest and if so do they just go to any one of them? [Sometimes. It depends.]
    3.) Do the Priests bring and use their own personal vessels? [There are some available.]
    4.)Does each Priest set up, remove, clean and put away the vessels if they use those provided by that Church? [There is a sacristan. Sacristans work hard, so I always try to remember to give them something for their labor and attention.]
    5.)Must you ask permission ahead of time to celebrate Mass there at one of the altars or can any Catholic Priest just show up and say Mass? [In general, you set things up ahead. However, this is a place where, within a certain band of hours a priest will be welcomed.]

  3. Joy65 says:

    Duh, totally forgot, every blessing and grace to you Father on your Birthday.

  4. JohnE says:

    Happy Birthday Fr. Z!

  5. acardnal says:

    Happy Birthday, Father! I’m sure you had no problem blowing out all 59 candles!

    It never fails to amaze me how many parish bulletins, priests, church calendars, diocesan notices and so on get this Canon WRONG mathematically and logically! Geeeee whiz people. Think!

  6. Andreas says:

    Alles alles gute zum Geburtstag, Herr Pfarrer!

  7. Jack in NH says:

    Happy birthday, Father!

  8. Markus says:

    Happy Birthday! You are now officially “older than dirt.” In five years you will be officially…

  9. Joy65 says:

    THANK YOU Father for the answers to my many questions.

  10. Philomena Mary says:

    Buon compleanno, Father!

    All blessings and grace to you on this wonderful day.

  11. Happy birthday! I believe the Hail Mary to be among the most efficacious of all prayers, so I said one for you.

  12. Julia_Augusta says:

    Happy Birthday! Keep posting food photos.

    I pray everyday for the clergy (the prayer that posted on your blog) and for you specifically.

  13. Michael says:

    Happy birthday, Fr. Z, and thank you for your work on behalf of the Lord and His Church. You will continue to be in my prayers.

  14. jdt2 says:

    Happy Birthday, Father
    !!! God bless, and many many more.

  15. Kathleen10 says:

    Good questions Joy.

    Happy Birthday Father Z! God bless you and may He keep you healthy and happy and give you peace, Amen.
    I love all your photos, food and otherwise. I’ll never see those things, this is as close as I’ll get, so I appreciate them.
    These are tough times Fr. Z. For the faithful in all vocations, especially yours. For all of us, we need to carve out some small pleasures in life, and laugh and step away from this church at times. Hopefully some day things will improve. If the church ever comes back she will find us waiting.
    Someday when I win Powerball I will make it possible for you to stay in Rome lots more if that is your heart’s inclination. :)

  16. mibethda says:

    Number three appears to be the arms of John XXIII – the lion recalling that he was Patriarch of Venice. I suppose the fleur de lis recalls his service as nuncio to Paris. Could the tower relate to his family?
    Happy birthday!

  17. Sportsfan says:

    Grattis på födelsedagen

    Many areas of Scandinavia had only one or two generations of Catholicism after converting from paganism before the Protestants took over. It would be interesting if a Scandinavian Catholic renewal led the way for the rest of the Church. Possibly in an improbable collaboration with West Africa.

  18. benedetta says:

    Happy Birthday, Father! You are in my prayers.

  19. roma247 says:

    Wait…you were born on the exact same day that John XXIII became Pope? No wonder they gave you that vestment. :)

    Many happy returns of the day! God bless you, father!

  20. jaykay says:

    Tanti auguri, Padre Z!

    Ahhh, when you said “about my same age” concerning the chasuble you were assigned – that rang a bell in the dim recesses of your’s truly’s cerebrum and I consulted da innerwebs. So, it has the arms of Santo Papa Giovanni XXIII, who had been Patriarch of Venice before his election and kept the Leone di San Marco in his Papal Arms as… a “Marker”?

    Interestingly, the webs informed me that, in the same century, so were also Popes St. Pius X and John Paul I Patriarchs of Venice, and they did the same thing.

    The sacristan perhaps has a good sense of humour.

    Anyway, wonderful pics. Thank you.

  21. Elizabeth D says:

    Happy birthday Fr Z! Seems like you have been having a ball in Rome.

  22. L. says:

    Happy 60th, Father! Superannuation is preferable to the alternative, I think.

  23. JamesA says:

    Happy birthday, Father ! Ad multos annos. The world and Holy Church are the better for your birth. Many thanks for all you do.

  24. Gab says:

    Plurimos annos, carissimi Sacerdotis! And more more happy returns of the day.

    I am thoroughly enjoying your informative and delightful travelogues from Rome. Thank you!

  25. Gab says:

    Oh and yes, you are in my prayers in the morning and at night but since it is your birthday, I will say an extra one for you!

  26. JonPatrick says:

    “Price list for the house of tolerance” ? Maybe someone who understands Italian and Italians can explain.

  27. JonPatrick says: house of tolerance” ?”

    Well… it’s like this. That’s a euphemism for a house of assignation, a “casino”, a bordello, as it were. At one point these places were regulated by the state (even by the Papal States) and certain standards were maintained, taxes collected, etc. In Italy they were legislated away after WWII.

  28. M. Murray says:

    Happy belated birthday, Fr. Z!! Regarding the embroidery on vestments, St John Cantius has St. Martha’s Guild which does such work. Maybe contact them and see what they could do for you.


  29. jaykay says:

    JonPatrick: as proof of how well regulated those “houses” were, the price of a hand wash and towel is set also – 50 centesimi!

    Actually, those matters apart, it’s an interesting reminder of how in Italy pre-Euro they used the same symbol for the Lire as is used in the UK (and was in Ireland) for the Pound – £. It always gave me a laugh when in Italy back in those days one saw signs for a cup of coffee at £1200 or so. But – what coffee!

  30. Mariana2 says:

    Happy Birthday, Father!

    The priest to your left, our right, dear Fr. A, is sorely missed by us in here St. B and Blessed H!

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