Monthly Archives: September 2016

Defend us in battle

 

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As evil continues to increase in the world, it would be beneficial and efficacious to pray the prayer to St. Michael, the great defender of the Church, daily.   Let us pray for his intercession, that St. Michael will do battle for us and scatter our enemies, both those in the world and in the Church.

“Then war broke out in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon, and the dragon and his angels fought back. But he was not strong enough, and they lost their place in heaven.  The great dragon was hurled down—that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray. He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him.”  ~Apocalypse 12:7-9

Now is the time when St. Michael will rise up to protect the children of light, the children of the Church, those faithful to his master and captain, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

“But at that time shall Michael rise up, the great prince, who standeth for the children of thy people: and a time shall come such as never was from the time that nations began even until that time. And at that time shall thy people be saved, every one that shall be found written in the book.”  ~Daniel 12:1

Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray: and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls.

Amen.

~Damsel of the Faith

 

Joseph Lefebvre, brother of Abp. Lefebvre, passes away

 

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Joseph Lefebvre, the youngest brother of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, has died at the age of 102.

We post for our readers below this article regarding the passing of Archbishop Lefebvre’s younger brother, Joseph.  Joseph, having lived a long, prosperous life as father of a good Catholic family,  was assisted before his death by a priest of the providential Order his own brother had founded.

What a beautiful privilege – to be the brother of Archbishop Lefebvre!  To see all of the wonderful fruits of Tradition today and realize that this was made possible by Divine Providence working through your own brother, who was a great champion and defender of the Traditional Catholic Faith, the Mass of All Time and the Catholic Priesthood!  May the world be granted many holy Catholic families like the Lefebvres for the restoration of Christendom and the Catholic Church!

http://sspx.org/en/news-events/news/rip-joseph-lefebvre-17891

R.I.P. Joseph Lefebvre!

September 24, 2016

Joseph, a brother of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, died a holy death at the age of 102.

Joseph Lefebvre, a brother of Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, passed away on Wednesday, September 21, 2016 at the age of 102. Lucid until the end, he died a holy death, assisted by Fr. David Aldalur, SSPX, who was able to give him the last rites and the Apostolic Benediction in articulo mortis.

Joseph was the 6th child of the Lefebvre family, five of whom were religious: René, the eldest (Holy Ghost Father); Jeanne (Sister of Mary Reparatrix); Marcel (Archbishop Lefebvre); Bernadette (Holy Ghost Sister and co-founder of the Sisters of Saint Pius X); Christiane (Carmelite); Joseph, Michel, and Marie-Thérèse.
For nearly 40 years, from 1947 to 1989, the Archbishop took no vacation except three or four days at his brother Joseph’s home in southern France each year.
Marie-Thérèse Toulemonde, born in 1925, is now the last survivor among Archbishop Lefebvre’s siblings.

The funeral will take place at Notre-Dame des Naufragés, a Society of St. Pius X chapel near Bayonne, France, on Monday.

~Damsel of the Faith & Knight of Tradition

Primacy of the husband over the wife

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“Domestic society being confirmed, therefore, by this bond of love, there should flourish in it that ‘order of love,’ as St. Augustine calls it. This order includes both the primacy of the husband with regard to the wife and children, the ready subjection of the wife and her willing obedience, which the Apostle commends in these words: ‘Let women be subject to their husbands as to the Lord, because the husband is the head of the wife, and Christ is the head of the Church.’ This subjection, however, does not deny or take away the liberty which fully belongs to the woman both in view of her dignity as a human person, and in view of her most noble office as wife and mother and companion; nor does it bid her obey her husband’s every request if not in harmony with right reason or with the dignity due to wife; nor, in fine, does it imply that the wife should be put on a level with those persons who in law are called minors, to whom it is customary not to allow free exercise of their rights on account of their lack of mature judgment, or of their ignorance of human affairs. But it forbids that exaggerated liberty which cares not for the good of the family; it forbids that in this body which is the family, the heart be separated from the head to the great detriment of the whole body and the proximate danger of rin. For if the man is the head, the woman is the heart, and as he occupies the chief place in ruling, so she may and ought to claim for herself the chief place in love. Again, this subjection of wife to husband in its degree and manner may vary according to the different conditions of persons, place and time. In fact, if the husband neglect his duty, it falls to the wife to take his place in directing the family. But the structure of the family and its fundamental law, established and confirmed by God, must always and everywhere be maintained intact. With great wisdom Our predecessor Leo XIII, of happy memory, in the Encyclical on Christian marriage which We have already mentioned, speaking of this order to be maintained between man and wife, teaches: ‘The man is the ruler of the family, and the head of the woman; but because she is flesh of his flesh and bone of his bone, let her be subject and obedient to the man, not as a servant but as a companion, so that nothing be lacking of honor or of dignity in the obedience which she pays. Let divine charity be the constant guide of their mutual relations, both in him who rules and in her who obeys, since each bears the image, the one of Christ, the other of the Church.'”

~Pius XI, “Casti Connubii”, 1930 A.D.

Assisi V

 

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http://www.dici.org/en/news/the-pope-will-be-present-at-the-5th-interreligious-meeting-of-assisi/

On September 20, 2016, Pope Francis will be present at the 5th “ecumenical” religious meeting at Assisi, wherein leaders of false religions will pray alongside the Sovereign Pontiff in an unholy alliance, praying for peace but bringing destruction, error and heresy to the Church.  Surely “peace” and “dialogue” will be discussed at this get-together and many prayers (both to the True God and to devils!) will subsequently be offered, but true peace will never be won with the false solutions proposed.  True peace can only be established in this world with the acceptance of Christ and His Church.  Any attempts of ignoring this fact to seek a greater “unity” with others will only promote a false semblance of peace and weaken the influence of Truth. This ecumenical meeting is a laugh in the face to Our Lady who gave us to the solution to our problems and the way to attain peace, the Consecration of Russia to Her Immaculate Heart, which will attain world peace and the conversion of the world to the Catholic Church. The refusal to heed and obey this request is the most blatant example of disobedience in the history of the Church.

Indeed, as this crisis in the Church lengthens, what “peace” can be seen?  It would seem that the longer the ‘conciliar’ church promotes this false ecumenical nonsense, the dire situation in the world grows worse.  It is unfortunate that even some “conservative” Catholics have been led to think that this “dialogue” would result in anything positive. It results in a disregard for Christ and the Church, which in turn is the result of religious indifferentism. These ecumenical meetings teach the heresy of religious indifferentism by placing false religions on the same footing as the True Religion, the Church of Jesus Christ, only possessor of the truth.

Even Pope Benedict, as “traditional”as he may have sounded on occasion, even approved at Assisi IV of a spokesman of behalf of those with no religion.

http://www.dici.org/en/news/assisi-1986-2011-reform-in-continuity/

Certainly this ‘conciliar’ church does not accept the true Catholic teaching found in Pope Pius XI’s Mortalium animos:

“Since they hold it for certain that men destitute of all religious sense are very rarely to be found, they seem to have founded on that belief a hope that the nations, although they differ among themselves in certain religious matters, will without much difficulty come to agree as brethren in professing certain doctrines, which form as it were a common basis of the spiritual life. For which reason conventions, meetings and addresses are frequently arranged by these persons, at which a large number of listeners are present, and at which all without distinction are invited to join in the discussion, both infidels of every kind, and Christians, even those who have unhappily fallen away from Christ or who with obstinacy and pertinacity deny His divine nature and mission.

“Certainly such attempts can nowise be approved by Catholics, founded as they are on that false opinion which considers all religions to be more or less good and praiseworthy, since they all in different ways manifest and signify that sense which is inborn in us all, and by which we are led to God and to the obedient acknowledgment of His rule. Not only are those who hold this opinion in error and deceived, but also in distorting the idea of true religion they reject it, and little by little turn aside to naturalism and atheism.”

“So, Venerable Brethren, it is clear why this Apostolic See has never allowed its subjects to take part in the assemblies of non-Catholics: for the union of Christians can only be promoted by promoting the return to the one true Church of Christ of those who are separated from it, for in the past they have unhappily left it. To the one true Church of Christ, we say, which is visible to all, and which is to remain, according to the will of its Author, exactly the same as He instituted it.”

What should good Catholics then do in the face of such an event?  Fr. Alain Lorans, SSPX, proposes a proper and praiseworthy solution in the editorial of the traditional Catholic news website, DICI:

Let us pray alongside the Christian martyrs of today

9-09-2016
Filed under From RomeNews

 A new interreligious meeting is to take place in Assisi on September 20, 2016, with Pope Francis presiding. Armed with the constant teachings of the Popes up until the Second Vatican Council, the Society of St. Pius X will not pray with the 400 representatives of worldwide religions who will invoke the beliefs of Mahomet, Buddha, Confucius and Kali alongside the profession of the Catholic Faith: I believe in one God, Father Almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible. I believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, born of the Father before all ages. The Society will pray with and for those who are currently undergoing persecution for their fidelity to the Catholic Credo, those Christians martyred in Egypt, in Syria, in Iraq, in Nigeria, in Pakistan, in Thailand, in Indonesia, in the Philippines…

The General Chapter of the Society of St. Pius X made a point of recalling in its concluding statement of July 14, 2012: “We unite ourselves with the other Christians undergoing persecution in countries throughout the world who are suffering for the Catholic Faith, frequently to the death. Their blood, shed in union with that of the Victim on our altars, is the sign of the renewal of the Church in capite et membris, in accordance with the old saying, ‘sanguis martyrum semen christianorum’.” (See DICI no. 259, 10/08/12)

To ask God for peace, without any ecumenical equivocation or interreligious ambiguity, the Society of St. Pius X adopts the words of the Collect of the Feast of Christ the King, instituted by Pius XI: “Almighty and everlasting God, who in Thy beloved Son, the King of the whole world, hast willed to restore all things, mercifully grant that all the kindreds of the nations that are divided by the wound of sin, may be brought under the sweet yoke of His rule

Fr. Alain Lorans

More excellent commentary from DICI can be found here:

http://www.dici.org/en/news/commentary-the-missionary-spirit-the-spirit-of-assisi/

May we all thus reject strongly this great novelty and pray instead with those who are fighting for the true Faith, even to the point of martyrdom! Anathema to Assisi V. May St. Francis intercede for our Pope, to remove the scales of Modernism from his eyes so that the Faith can be restored and souls convert to the only means of salvation, the Catholic Church.

-Damsel of the Faith & Knight of Tradition

 

 

Our Sorrowful Mother

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Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. Below is a beautiful meditation on Our Sorrowful Mother. Our Lady of Sorrows is also the Patronal Feast Day of my SSPX chapel, Our Lady of Sorrows in Baton Rouge, La. Let us make reparation to Our Lady of Sorrows for the outrages and sacrileges committed against Her Immaculate and Sorrowful Heart.

Our Lady of Sorrows, ora pro nobis!

 

Reflection on Our Sorrowful Mother

by Rev. Frederick A. Reuter

Darkness had come down over the hills of Judea, and, in the gloom, hills and valley were one. It was the last day of the unredeemed world; the morrow would be the dawn of the first day of the world redeemed by the Death of Christ Our Lord.

Upon one of those hills stood a sorrowing Mother. It was the evening of her sorrow, near its end. The morning began in the long ago, when in the Temple the prophet had told that Mother of a coming sorrow that would pierce her heart as a sword. It grew in intensity in the hurried, anxious flight into Egypt, when fear broke into that stainless heart lest ruffian hands should steal away the Life that had just begun.

hat sorrow changed its tone to grief again, in the weary, aching search of the three days’ loss in Jerusalem; and again the parting of the Son from His Mother, and her meeting Him cross-laden, seemed to her more than she could bear. But this was not all. It surpasses human words to tell all that Mother suffered. One cannot hope to tell the whole story. But one can always look upon the sweet, sorrowful face of the Mother, think of who she was, think of her Son, gaze upon His dead body, all covered with His precious blood, and then answer what it teaches one’s heart of her sorrow. One begins to look upon the face of that Mother, to mourn with her and for one’s sins; to ask the grace to know the depth of the bitterness that welled up in Mary’s heart.

The very meaning of the name of Mary is “sea of bitterness.” How truly this word tells the story of that Mother’s life. The bitterness of the Passion of Christ, ” great as the sea,” was in the heart of Mary from that first dread prophecy. The shadow of the Cross hung its gloom over that bright life, which one would say should have been free from sorrow’s lightest touch. She had a mother’s heart in all its yearning’s for the joy of her Son, and its finest fibers were wrung in response to the beating pulses of His pain. The first pang came with the Circumcision, and increased till the spear opened His side at the crucifixion, till it could increase no more, for the measure of its woe was full; and in that fullness there was no kind of bitterness that she had not tasted. The neglect and the insults at Bethlehem, the inconvenience and fear of the flight were there; and before this, the grief after the Annunciation, when Joseph was “minded to put her away,” a sorrow that she bore in silence alone, and such an intensely painful sorrow to her immaculate Heart; the parting and the Agony and the Passion and the scenes of Calvary –all these tell us of that “sea of bitterness” in Mary’s name.

All this brings her inexpressibly near to us in sympathy. In our trials, and desolation and darkness, we do not realize how near to us she is until we have meditated upon this meaning of her name. In Mary the faculty of sympathy is developed to such a degree that she cannot but feel for each one of our woes. Sympathy would come from the very perfection of that heart, formed with such care and quickened by the greatest graces of God. Mary’s heart is the heart of a Mother ever inclining to comfort her little ones in their distress. For, as among the Greeks, that mercy might temper justice, no one was allowed to be a judge, who was not also a father; so in a much greater degree, will a mother’s justice be tempered by mercy. Besides being a mother, her Son’s sorrows developed still more that character of her soul; and as His sorrows were born for us, even apart from her special relation to us, our sorrows must make a deeper impression on her. When we remember, moreover, that we have been entrusted to her as to our Mother, we understand more fully the meaning of the words of the Salve Regina, that she is a “Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope,” and in our sorrow we send up to her a cry of mourning from this vale of tears, that she who was immersed in bitterness may turn her eyes of mercy upon our needs.

Sorrows come home to every human heart; sorrows that are sweet and merciful; sorrows that set the heart against the pitiless world, or seek to make it rebellious against God’s providence; or, again, sorrows that paralyze the heart’s energies, and deaden it to all that is joyful in, life. But, over all these sorrows comes the calm, peaceful glance of the Mother of Sorrows, helping us to sanctify every pang, and to bear all in patience through love for our dear Saviour, her Son.

When the morning of her sorrow had grown into noon, and the evening came, the fullest weight of grief was upon her. The Cross is laid upon Him, and He is brought to Calvary. His Mother meets Him on the way. Their eyes meet. Dimly, through the tears and blood that obscure His sight, Our Lord discerns His Mother’s face, and His glance carried strength to her soul. He summons her, His well- beloved, to ratify the oblation made at Nazareth in the hour of the Incarnation, when she consented to become the Mother of the Man of Sorrows; the oblation made solemnly in the Temple on the day of His Presentation, and renewed again and again as the time of the Passion drew near: “Behold the handmaid of the Lord.” At every stage of His Redemption she is His handmaid, waiting upon Him always, His fellow-worker on whose sympathy and absolute fidelity He can rely. No cry of pain escapes her. To bring Him the only comfort in her power–the assurance that she accepts with Him every jot and tittle of the Father’s will; that she does not grudge one pang; that she is ready for more, for the consummation of the Sacrifice, for Calvary–this is her one thought. She cannot speak. Her heart would break with a word to Him. But her eyes, her quivering lips, her clasped hands speak for her. It is but for a moment that the Son and the Mother meet.

“When they have come to the place where they are to crucify Him, she, in her love, is near; as they stretch Him upon the Cross, she hears the dull thud of the hammer as it falls upon the nail that is to pierce His right hand, and the cruel sound it makes as it forces the nail through His sacred Flesh.

Did not that nail drive its way through her own heart? And then comes the nailing of the left hand, and another wound in her heart, and then the strokes that fasten the feet of her Son to the wood of the Cross. The Cross is lifted up, and sinks into the place prepared for it. She hears the sound, and knows that it is increasing the pains in His hands and feet. ”Oh, all you that pass by the way, attend and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow.”

As Mary stands there at the foot of the Cross and looks up to that face–that beautiful face of her Infant of Bethlehem–there comes to her heart the contrast of the joy of that first Christmas and the sorrow of this Good Friday. That little one had grown up beside her, had called her lovingly by the name of mother; and from the gloom of Calvary her heart goes back to the home at Nazareth, and the crib of Bethlehem, and it seems as if her heart is broken. This is the realization of Simeon’s prophecy; the sword has pierced her heart, indeed.

But when a mother sees her son grow up, and when his life is full of the promise of manhood, in all the glory of his youth he is suddenly taken away from her, who will measure the desolation and the darkness and the sadness that sweep over her life? Her hopes are broken, her dreams scattered, her soul crushed. In the night of her grief, it seems to her that there is nothing in life worth living for. She is alone, and the great sorrowing love welling up in her heart has not whereon to put itself. If this be true of a mother’s love for her child, where was there a mother with such a child as Jesus? Where a mother with such great, strong, tender love as the Blessed Virgin Mary had for her Son? And unless we know who Jesus was, unless we understand His infinite holiness His tenderness, His goodness, His divine amiability and His own love for that Mother; unless we can penetrate into the mysteries of that beautiful heart of Mary, we can never fully understand the sorrow of that afternoon on Calvary. As she stood gazing upward there, she heard Him speak. But, oh, how, changed that voice from long ago; She heard Him speak the word “Mother.” And after those other words were spoken, as she was looking up, she saw those eyes close, and heard that last word, and Jesus, her Son, was dead.

The desolation and the sorrow, and the grief and the resignation of the Mother of Jesus! He was dead! “The most beautiful of the sons of men.” Now there was no comeliness in Him. He was despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrows, one wound from the crown of His head to the soles of His feet. He was wounded for our iniquities, and by His bruises we are healed. When they lift that Body from the Cross, and place it in the arms of His heart-broken Mother; when in her grief she clasps her arms about Him to forget all the world and be alone with Him in spirit, truly we ask: “Was there ever a sorrow like that sorrow?” Can we enter deeper into that mystery of sorrow?

There is indeed a deeper depth: but it is enough With these pictures and memories before us, we should let the thought of them sink deep into our hearts. We naturally feel disposed to sympathy with that Mother, and sorrow for the sufferings of Jesu Christ; sorrow and love and sympathy in union with the hearts of Jesus and Mary. There is no better means of offering the reparation in which, as Associates in the Apostleship of Prayer, we are all engaged. The very day of the Feast of Mary’s Sorrows, which is kept in September, is our own day for Communions of Reparation. Although a day commemorative of mourning, it still goes by the name of Feast. Feast of the Seven Sorrows, the Church terms it, and so dear is that Feast that the Calendar offers it to our celebration twice a year. It is rightly dear to the Church, and justly named Feast. Mary’s Sorrows were a cause of our joy.

St. Louis’ Letter to his Son, Phillip

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The following is King Louis IX’s beautiful letter to his son, who would later become Phillip III, exhorting him to to be a good and just King and Ruler by practicing holiness and avoiding sin, while admonishing him to love the Holy Catholic Church, which it is his duty to defend.

http://sourcebooks.fordham.edu/halsall/source/stlouis1.html

 

1. To his dear first-born son, Philip, greeting, and his father’s love.

2. Dear son, since I desire with all my heart that you be well “instructed in all things, it is in my thought to give you some advice in this writing. For I have heard you say, several times, that you remember my words better than those of any one else.

3. Therefore, dear son, the first thing I advise is that you fix your whole heart upon God, and love Him with all your strength, for without this no one can be saved or be of any worth.

4. You should, with all your strength, shun everything which you believe to be displeasing to Him. And you ought especially to be resolved not to commit mortal sin, no matter what may happen and should permit all your limbs to be hewn off, and suffer every manner of torment, rather than fall knowingly into mortal sin.

5. If our Lord send you any adversity, whether illness or other in good patience, you should receive it in good patience and be thankful for it, for you ought to believe that He will cause everything to turn out for your good; and likewise you should think that you have well merited it, and more also, should He will it, because you have loved Him but little, and served Him but little, and have done many things contrary to His will.

6. If our Lord send you any prosperity, either health of body or other thing you ought to thank Him humbly for it, and you ought to be careful that you are not the worse for it, either through pride or anything else, for it is a very great sin to fight against our Lord with His gifts.

7. Dear son, I advise you that you accustom yourself to frequent confession, and that you choose always, as your confessors, men who are upright and sufficiently learned, and who can teach you what you should do and what you should avoid. You should so carry yourself that your confessors and other friends may dare confidently to reprove you and show you your faults.

8. Dear son, I advise you that you listen willingly and devoutly the services of Holy Church, and, when you are in church, avoid to frivolity and trifling, and do not look here and there; but pray to God with lips and heart alike, while entertaining sweet thoughts about Him, and especially at the mass, when the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ are consecrated, and for a little time before.

9. Dear son, have a tender pitiful heart for the poor, and for all those whom you believe to be in misery of heart or body, and, according to your ability, comfort and aid them with some alms.

10. Maintain the good customs of your realm, and put down the bad ones. Do not oppress your people and do not burden them with tolls or tailles, except under very great necessity.

11. If you have any unrest of heart, of such a nature that it may be told, tell it to your confessor, or to some upright man who can keep your secret; you will be able to carry more easily the thought of your heart.

12. See to it that those of your household are upright and loyal, and remember the Scripture, which says: “Elige viros timentes Deum in quibus sit justicia et qui oderint avariciam”; that is to say, “Love those who serve God and who render strict justice and hate covetousness”; and you will profit, and will govern your kingdom well.

13. Dear son, see to it that all your associates are upright, whether clerics or laymen, and have frequent good converse with them; and flee the society of the bad. And listen willingly to the word of God, both in open and in secret; and purchase freely prayers and pardons.

14. Love all good, and hate all evil, in whomsoever it may be.

15. Let no one be so bold as to say, in your presence, words which attract and lead to sin, and do not permit words of detraction to be spoken of another behind his back.

!6. Suffer it not that any ill be spoken of God or His saints in your presence, without taking prompt vengeance. But if the offender be a clerk or so great a person that you ought not to try him, report the matter to him who is entitled to judge it.

17. Dear son, give thanks to God often for all the good things He has done for you, so that you may be worthy to receive more, in such a manner that if it please the Lord that you come to the burden and honor of governing the kingdom, you may be worthy to receive the sacred unction wherewith the kings of France are consecrated.

18. Dear son, if you come to the throne, strive to have that which befits a king, that is to say, that in justice and rectitude you hold yourself steadfast and loyal toward your subjects and your vassals, without turning either to the right or to the left, but always straight, whatever may happen. And if a poor man have a quarrel with a rich man, sustain the poor rather than the rich, until the truth is made clear, and when you know the truth, do justice to them.

19. If any one have entered into a suit against you (for any injury or wrong which he may believe that you have done to him), be always for him and against yourself in the presence of your council, without showing that you think much of your case (until the truth be made known concerning it); for those of your council might be backward in speaking against you, and this you should not wish; and command your judges that you be not in any way upheld more than any others, for thus will your councillors judge more boldly according to right and truth.

20. If you have anything belonging to another, either of yourself or through your predecessors, if the matter is certain, give it up without delay, however great it may be, either in land or money or otherwise. If the matter is doubtful, have it inquired into by wise men, promptly and diligently. And if the affair is so obscure that you cannot know the truth, make such a settlement, by the counsel of upright men, that your soul, and the soul your predecessors, may be wholly freed from the affair. And even if you hear some one say that your predecessors made restitution, make diligent inquiry to learn if anything remains to be restored; and if you find that such is the case, cause it to be delivered over at once, for the liberation of your soul and the souls of your predecessors.

21. You should seek earnestly how your vassals and your subjects may live in peace and rectitude beneath your sway; likewise, the good towns and the good cities of your kingdom. And preserve them in the estate and the liberty in which your predecessors kept them, redress it, and if there be anything to amend, amend and preserve their favor and their love. For it is by the strength and the riches of your good cities and your good towns that the native and the foreigner, especially your peers and your barons, are deterred from doing ill to you. I will remember that Paris and the good towns of my kingdom aided me against the barons, when I was newly crowned.

22. Honor and love all the people of Holy Church, and be careful that no violence be done to them, and that their gifts and alms, which your predecessors have bestowed upon them, be not taken away or diminished. And I wish here to tell you what is related concerning King Philip, my ancestor, as one of his council, who said he heard it, told it to me. The king, one day, was with his privy council, and he was there who told me these words. And one of the king’s councillors said to him how much wrong and loss he suffered from those of Holy Church, in that they took away his rights and lessened the jurisdiction of his court; and they marveled greatly how he endured it. And the good king answered: “I am quite certain that they do me much wrong, but when I consider the goodnesses and kindnesses which God has done me, I had rather that my rights should go, than have a contention or awaken a quarrel with Holy Church.” And this I tell to you that you may not lightly believe anything against the people of Holy Church; so love them and honor them and watch over them that they may in peace do the service of our Lord.

23. Moreover, I advise you to love dearly the clergy, and, so far as you are able, do good to them in their necessities, and likewise love those by whom God is most honored and served, and by whom the Faith is preached and exalted.

24. Dear son, I advise that you love and reverence your father and your mother, willingly remember and keep their commandments, and be inclined to believe their good counsels.

25. Love your brothers, and always wish their well-being and their good advancement, and also be to them in the place of a father, to instruct them in all good. But be watchful lest, for the love which you bear to one, you turn aside from right doing, and do to the others that which is not meet.

26. Dear son, I advise you to bestow the benefices of Holy Church which you have to give, upon good persons, of good and clean life, and that you bestow them with the high counsel of upright men. And I am of the opinion that it is preferable to give them to those who hold nothing of Holy Church, rather than to others. For, if you inquire diligently, you will find enough of those who have nothing who will use wisely that entrusted to them.

27. Dear son, I advise you that you try with all your strength to avoid warring against any Christian man, unless he have done you too much ill. And if wrong be done you, try several ways to see if you can find how you can secure your rights, before you make war; and act thus in order to avoid the sins which are committed in warfare.

28. And if it fall out that it is needful that you should make war (either because some one of your vassals has failed to plead his case in your court, or because he has done wrong to some church or to some poor person, or to any other person whatsoever, and is unwilling to make amends out of regard for you, or for any other reasonable cause), whatever the reason for which it is necessary for you to make war, give diligent command that the poor folk who have done no wrong or crime be protected from damage to their vines, either through fire or otherwise, for it were more fitting that you should constrain the wrongdoer by taking his own property (either towns or castles, by force of siege), than that you should devastate the property of poor people. And be careful not to start the war before you have good counsel that the cause is most reasonable, and before you have summoned the offender to make amends, and have waited as long as you should. And if he ask mercy, you ought to pardon him, and accept his amende, so that God may be pleased with you.

29. Dear son, I advise you to appease wars and contentions, whether they be yours or those of your subjects, just as quickly as may be, for it is a thing most pleasing to our Lord. And Monsignore Martin gave us a very great example of this. For, one time, when our Lord made it known to him that he was about to die, he set out to make peace between certain clerks of his archbishopric, and he was of the opinion that in so doing he was giving a good end to life.

30. Seek diligently, most sweet son, to have good baillis and good prevots in your land, and inquire frequently concerning their doings, and how they conduct themselves, and if they administer justice well, and do no wrong to any one, nor anything which they ought not do. Inquire more often concerning those of your household if they be too covetous or too arrogant; for it is natural that the members should seek to imitate their chief; that is, when the master is wise and well-behaved, all those of his household follow his example and prefer it. For however much you ought to hate evil in others, you shoud have more hatred for the evil which comes from those who derive their power from you, than you bear to the evil of others; and the more ought you to be on your guard and prevent this from happening.

3!. Dear son, I advise you always to be devoted to the Church of Rome, and to the sovereign pontiff, our father, and to bear him the the reverence and honor which you owe to your spiritual father.

32. Dear son, freely give power to persons of good character, who know how to use it well, and strive to have wickednesses expelled from your land, that is to say, nasty oaths, and everything said or done against God or our Lady or the saints. In a wise and proper manner put a stop, in your land, to bodily sins, dicing, taverns, and other sins. Put down heresy so far as you can, and hold in especial abhorrence Jews, and all sorts of people who are hostile to the Faith, so that your land may be well purged of them, in such manner as, by the sage counsel of good people, may appear to you advisable.

33. Further the right with all your strength. Moreover I admonish you you that you strive most earnestly to show your gratitude for the benefits which our Lord has bestowed upon you, and that you may know how to give Him thanks therefore

34. Dear son, take care that the expenses of your household are reasonable and moderate, and that its moneys are justly obtained. And there is one opinion that I deeply wish you to entertain, that is to say, that you keep yourself free from foolish expenses and evil exactions, and that your money should be well expended and well acquired. And this opinion, together with other opinions which are suitable and profitable, I pray that our Lord may teach you.

35. Finally, most sweet son, I conjure and require you that, if it please our Lord that I should die before you, you have my soul succored with masses and orisons, and that you send through the congregations of the kingdom of France, and demand their prayers for my soul, and that you grant me a special and full part in all the good deeds which you perform.

36. In conclusion, dear son, I give you all the blessings which a good and tender father can give to a son, and I pray our Lord Jesus Christ, by His mercy, by the prayers and merits of His blessed Mother, the Virgin Mary, and of angels and archangels and of all the saints, to guard and protect you from doing anything contrary to His will, and to give you grace to do it always, so that He may be honored and served by you. And this may He do to me as to you, by His great bounty, so that after this mortal life we may be able to be together with Him in the eternal life, and see Him, love Him, and praise Him without end. Amen. And glory, honor, and praise be to Him who is one God with the Father and the Holy Spirit; without beginning and without end. Amen.

From Saint Louis’ Advice to His Son, in Medieval Civilization, trans. and eds. Dana Munro and George Clarke Sellery (New York: The Century Company, 1910), pp. 366 -75.

Nativity of Our Lady

Happy Birthday to Our Lady, the pure, holy, spotless and Immaculate Mother of God!

Damsel of the Faith

Here is a meditation for the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, by Fr. Francis Xavier Weinger, 1876.  Happy Birthday to Our Lady, the pure, holy, spotless and Immaculate Mother of God!

“What an one, think ye, shall this child be?”–Luke i, 66.

When St. John, the precursor of our Lord, first saw the light of day, and when his father’s tongue was loosed, as he wrote the name of the child, people wondered and said: “What an one, think ye, shall this child be? For the hand of the Lord was with him.”

This child was to be the forerunner of our Lord, of Him who is to be the Saviour of the world, to prepare for Him a way by which to enter the hearts of the children of men. Had the neighbors, when they first saw the child, but known his high vocation, they…

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