ROME DAY 7: Weird Amazon Stuff, Death and a Spatula

Sunrise – 7:14, Colors – 18:40, Ave Maria 19:00.

Rome is truly “crazy town” right now.

Over at Santa Maria in Transpontina there is a display, with people stationed to offer help to the curious, of what (they hope) the Synod hopes to integrate.  Involved are those who performed the probably demonic pagan rite in the Vatican gardens.

And an image I don’t want to post, but you can access HERE, of a woman breastfeeding some sort of critter.

“But Father!  But Father!”, you papalatrous toadies are croaking, in your best imitation of colorful Amazon tree frogs, “That’s just Nature!  Mother Nature!  Get it?  It’s like … like… you know… the ecosystem… which is church and… and… it’s NATURE!  But you are against nature because YOU HATE VATICAN II!”

Sorry, folks.  But that’s just weird.

Meanwhile, back in the Rione Regola, where I am staying, we find a fountain that might be mistaken for one of the “fontane rionali” (I posted the “pigna” fountain the other day)  This is the Fontana dela Cancelleria, or Chancery which is nearby.  That’s where the tree highest tribunals of the Church are housed.  This fountain, however, was designed by the guy who also did the fountain in the Piazza Viminale and the monument to the Bersagliere at the Porta Pia and the “Dioscuri” out in the ghastly EUR zone.   So, same sterile era as the fontane rionali.

This fountain depicts the arms of Card. Scarampi who commissioned Bramante to design the Palazzo della Cancelleria in the 15th century.

Here’s the facade of the 18th c. Santa Maria d’Orazione e Morte, on the Via Giulia,”St. Mary of Prayer and Death”.  Cheerful title.   There was an earlier church, dating to the 16th c.

Outside are plaques with slots for the giving of alms for the care of the dead, the lighting of a perpetual lamp (who knows if that’s still going… I doubt it) and also for widows and children of men who died while working.   There was a confraternity here, which was dedicated to giving decent burial to the abandoned dead.  St. Charles Borromeo was a member.

“This is my lot, today, but your’s tomorrow!”  Hodie mihi, cras tibi!

Memento mori!   I hope the nitwit who made the graffito got a good look.

Tempus fugit!

I haven’t seen it for years, but inside there is a room decorated with human bones, candelabra from skulls, etc.  You don’t see the church or that room open very often.

The Roman poet Belli has a couple of sonnets about the church and the cemetery, which was destroyed, probably when the embankments and the roadway of the Lungotevere was put through.   One of them HERE.

Meanwhile… or rather meenwhile… I have nothing to report about food.  Breakfast was a cup of granola, no lunch.  Last night I was out for a very pleasant supper with some great guys, but the food, while decent, was unremarkable.   So, I end with this brilliant mural observation.



Yes, do. Please, just go, vegan.

I’m sure that you were wondering whether or not I obtained a spatula.  I did.  It is very nice.  Blue.  I bought it from a little shop around the corner that has a bit of everything.  A nice old codger runs it with his wife.  I don’t know how they keep the doors open.  His grandfather, he informed me, found the amazing bronze Etruscan chariot which you can view now in the Met in NYC.   I’ll do my best to buy things from them, if at all possible and as need arises.   Next on the list: sewing items.

I spoke with the tailor about my new cassock yesterday after Mass. He was at the church to fit someone.  He looked at me and wanted to check my details again, saying that I’ve lost weight.  Sure enough, down a couple centimeters from the last check.  He has a good eye.

My cold is worse. I fear it is going to morph into bronchitis, to which I am prone in Rome.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    One of the arguments vegans like to use that we shouldn’t drink milk is that only humans (supposedly) drink milk past birth, and that only humans (supposedly) ever drink the milk of another species. Thank you for posting evidence against that second point.

  2. Atra Dicenda, Rubra Agenda says:

    You didnt really explain….that is a woman in a Roman collar next to the pagans?

    [The picture itself is worth a thousand words.]

  3. Maximilian75 says:

    Is that a woman in a tab collar in the first few photos….?

  4. poohbear says:

    Fr Z, you should buy some Local Honey while you are in Rome, and then have it while at home preparing for your travels. Many people say local honey will help prevent all sorts of respiratory problems.

  5. fmsb78 says:

    A little disclosure first, I am a Brazilian and I come from the northeast side of Brazil, precisely from the state of Bahia where there are still lots of Indian descents, although all adapted to the modern life of the cities. The amazon is in the north side of the country but there are some cultural common elements on both regions.

    Ever since I saw that ritual in the Vatican gardens I was thinking what was wrong with it, besides the paganism of course, and it’s that lady functioning as a pajé. The pajé is the “priest” and, I might be wrong, but normally in the Brazilian Indian tribes, the pajé “priest” is a MALE role only. Indian women use elements of their superstition to make medicines out of plants etc but they don’t lead or incense the people, neither shake rattles. Again, that’s the role of man.

    So, the other message there besides the paganism is: “All cultures have priestess so should catholics” but any Brazilian Indian knows that ritual was a travesty and a “modernist” alteration of their ancient liturgy.

  6. michele421 says:

    I’m an unashamed liberal. But I looked at the picture to which you linked, and I wished I hadn’t. Please don’t ascribe this sort of thing, or the nonsense pictures here, to liberals. This is so far, far outside the liberal pale, somewhere in outer weirdness. I breastfed both my children, and strongly support the practice, but just the thought of that picture is an outrage.

    I will be keeping you and your cold in my prayers, that it clears up soon and doesn’t turn into bronchitis.

    [You see… this is precisely the inevitable outcome of the lib path. It will always wind up going in this direction. And there is a reason why of all the religions on earth, only the Jews and now Christian Catholics had male only priesthood.]

  7. JabbaPapa says:

    I will follow nobody — Lay, Religious, Priest, Bishop, nor Pope — into outright Paganism.

    It is not this church that our Lord died for.

  8. Diane says:

    Praying for you to get well soon, Father! Hope you can get some medicine that will help you over there. I clicked your wavy flag! Hope that helps just a little! God Bless You.

  9. Art says:

    It is meat and right so to do.

  10. hwriggles4 says:

    About the male only priesthood (which I agree with):

    I live in the South, and I have Baptist friends and my dad was a lifelong Methodist (I am basically a “revert”). My Baptist friends tell me that Baptist ministers have to be male (I am wondering if this is determined by what convention a particular church is under – years ago the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth was a longtime holdout on reserving priestly ordination to men alone) . A few Protestant friends have also told me their wives prefer a minister who is a man, so they attend Sunday service with a Male pastor.

    One of the best Journey Home stories I remember was a woman who had been a Protestant minister (I think she was Presbyterian or Church of Christ before crossing the Tiber) and found that being a female pastor was difficult.

    I know the Mormons do not allow women to be ministers either.

  11. beelady says:

    Father, I am confused by your comments to Michele421’s post.
    I agree that the priesthood is meant to be all male but I don’t understand what that has to do with her disgust at the picture you linked in the above post.
    Your comments seem to imply that women shouldn’t be priests because one of them did something really weird when they breastfed an animal.
    That line of thought doesn’t make any sense to me in light of the revolting sexual abuse that male priests have committed against women, children, and other men.
    There are many compelling arguments in support of an all-male priesthood. The line of thought that God chose men because of their moral superiority over women isn’t one of them. I sincerely hope that I have misunderstood your comments. I would appreciate clarification if you have the time.

  12. Gregg the Obscure says:

    the little church on the Via Giulia is now part of the long list of places i want to see should ever i get to Rome. a shame that newer church buildings have followed so many silly fads.

  13. DeGaulle says:

    Someone above suggested a ‘local honey’ for your bronchitis-I’d keep away from that one with the collar, if I were you!

    I hope your cold gets well soon and doesn’t take away from your enjoyment of your visit.

  14. Simon_GNR says:

    “Meet is murder” [sic]

    On the contrary, meat is meet!

  15. jaykay says:

    Absolutely, Simon. It is meet (and right) to eat meat. And neat… like yeah, man.

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