Monthly Archives: May 2018

St. Joan of Arc, my Heroine

Today is the Feast of my heroine, St. Joan of Arc. Her story and life can be found here:

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08409c.htm

I strive to follow her courageous and heroic example in doing my small part to fight the spiritual foes of our time, the Modernists who have infiltrated our Holy Church to destroy Her.

A Book Analysis I wrote on the “Personal Recollections of St. Joan of Arc” by Mark Twain:

In the story Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc, by Mark Twain, St. Joan, the heroine of the story, is granted the God-given mission of restoring the king of her country, France, to his rightful throne and saving France from the English.  St. Joan of Arc, great military leader of the French, was a simple, peasant girl who was called and guided by the Saints of God to lead the armies of France against the English during the Hundred Years War.  Easily obtaining the acclaim of all of France as a military heroine, she succeeded in victory, but it cost her martyrdom by being burned at the stake as a heretic.  Throughout the story, she never ceases to be a brave, courageous, religious and militant girl with the strength of a true soldier of extraordinary strength and fearlessness.  Throughout the story, St. Joan of Arc demonstrates the traits of simplicity, courage and piety.

As a peasant girl growing up in Domremy, Joan’s life was one of simplicity.  For example, her parents were simple laborers.  She helped them like any normal girl of her time, tending to her father’s animals.  In her childhood, she was light-hearted and even believed in fairies.  She was a bashful girl and was so easily embarrassed in the presence of strangers that she was nicknamed Bashful.  Compare this to her combat in war and one sees the simplicity of Joan of Arc before her transformation into a soldier.  She, who was not able to read, understood the complex arts of war, only through the grace and help of God.   She was simple in modesty of voice and manners. The simplicity of St. Joan of Arc proves that even the simplest peasant girl can confound the proud and do great things.

In addition to her simplicity, St. Joan of Arc was given extraordinary courage which was required of her to be victorious over the enemies of France.  First and foremost, her courage was seen in accepting the call of the Saints to lead the armies of France.  St. Joan knew that God was calling her and did not hesitate to obey Him, despite her simplicity, littleness and  ignorance of the ways of war.  Throughout the story, her courage proves that she is forgetful of herself and was only concerned about the preservation of her people, the king and her country. Once, she led an assault and made the Duke stand out of the way when cannon-balls were flying to save his life.  This proves that she was courageous because she did not fear for her own life, but instead put her own life at risk to save another.  Every battle of St. Joan required much courage.  Finally, her courage was shown most admirably when she was condemned, tortured and shamed at her trial.  She who was the heroine of France was humiliated to the level of a heretic and traitor.  Her courage won her the martyr’s crown.  Truly, courage was her greatest trait that saved her country and won her reward, martyrdom.

St. Joan’s simplicity and courage was joined with her Catholic piety which was demonstrated throughout her short life as a peasant and leader of the armies of France.  For example, her respect for the priesthood was shown when she stood with a reverent attitude, with her head down in reverence before great church dignitaries.  They stood before her as no friends, but wanted to hear the message that she had for the King alone.  Secondly, she obeyed the will of God for her, to lead the armies of France to victory.  She exhibited a submission to the will of God.  Her army was guided by God to victory.  Once, she rode to the cathedral to give thanks to God with the people following her example.  All throughout her life, she was nurtured in her Catholic faith and it alone gave her strength to accomplish the difficult tasks that God handed her.  Her Catholic piety was demonstrated in the banner that she carried into battle, depicting an image of Jesus and Mary.  Catholic piety or love of God and the Church was her primary strength, especially in her mission of saving France.

In conclusion, St. Joan is proven to be consistently courageous, simple and pious.  The extraordinary work required of her to save France and the Dauphin required extraordinary courage which God so generously endowed her with.  St. Joan’s simplicity kept her humble so as not to glory in her mission, which was extraordinary as it was great.  Most of all, her Catholic piety shown throughout the story proves her great love of God and the Church, which gave her the strength to fight to the death.  St. Joan of Arc is a witness of what a true, militant Catholic should be, for she displayed the Church Militant in action.

Personal Recollections of St. Joan of Arc, by Mark Twain, presents the theme that Christian warfare, driven by prayer and courage, is a duty for any good Catholic.  The main character, Joan, is a young peasant girl with a deep devotion to Christ and the Church who was called upon by God for a mission that required extraordinary courage.  Through internal conspiracies and fierce battles, she proved herself to be a courageous leader, endowed by God with wisdom and piety beyond her years.   She fought like any true soldier and her life is symbolic of the Church Militant.  Whether it was the victory at Patay or her final trial, her perseverance and courage was her crowning glory throughout the book.  Fueled by prayer as she was wont to do before every battle, God gave her the victory, just as He will a faithful Catholic with a similar devotion to God and prayer that she had.  She stood by her country and Faith, even at the cost of her life.   The matter of Christian warfare applies to a Catholic’s everyday life, for Christian warfare is to fight sin that comes from the world, the flesh and the devil with courage, grace and utmost devotion, just as Joan fought literal battles with the same.  Her example and virtues can be imitated by all.  For a young girl, she proves that the small do confound the proud, for humility is preferable over pride.  The last proof of her courage was in her martyrdom at the hands of her enemies.  This story encourages the practice of the virtues of prayer and courage, especially pertaining to the spiritual life and the dangers one has to face as a member of the Church Militant.


Let us ask the intercession of St. Joan of Arc that she would help us in the Church Militant to fight against sin, the principalities of this world, evil in the Church, innovation and error, the Modernists, and finally the deadly synthesis of all heresies itself, Modernism.

St. Joan of Arc, ora pro nobis!

~Damsel of the Faith

http://gloria.tv/media/ooyGqzULFNQ

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Communion in the hand denied at the Vatican?

 

I stumbled upon this video, which shows Commmunion in the hand being denied to communicants at the Vatican on Pentecost Sunday. Does anyone know when this practice started? In the Vatican as a whole or just these individual priests? Regardless of the agenda here, kudos to the Vatican for appearing to actually defend the Blessed Sacrament, doing something Catholic, for once.

https://gloria.tv/article/pc1crqtNuZYE3FNmxnUatSTAc

However, the weakness in the clergy is apparent when the choir member demands to receive in the hand. Nowhere is found respect & reverence & worship for the Holy Eucharist. I have to wonder why the priests & bishops & Pope were ordained & consecrated, for the primary purpose of their entire life is the defense of the Blessed Sacrament, the Sacraments of the Church & christian morality, yet we see that no one is more brazen in destroying them than they.  Lord have mercy.

“Unfortunately, in many places Communion is distributed in the hand. To what extent is this supposed to be a renewal and a deepening of the reception of Holy Communion? Is the trembling reverence with which we receive this incomprehensible gift perhaps increased by receiving it in our unconscentrated hands, rather than from the consecrated hands of the priest? It is not difficult to see that the danger of parts of the consecrated Host falling to the ground is incomparably increased, and the danger of desecrating it or indeed of horrible blasphemy is very great. And what in the world is to be gained from all this?”  ~Dietrich von Hildebrand, “The Devastated Vineyard” p. 67-68, 1973

 

Feast of the Triune God

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The Feast of the Holy Trinity honors this most illustrious mystery, the freatest mystery of the Church, namely that God is in three persons – Father, Son & Holy Ghost.

http://sspx.org/en/news-events/news/liturgy-trinity-sunday-praise-triune-godhead-37607

“The fundamental truth on which everything in the Christian religion rests, is the dogma of the Holy Trinity from whom all comes, and to whom all baptized in His name must return.

 

In the course of the cycle, having called to our minds in order, God the Father, Author of creation, God the Son, Author of redemption, and God the Holy Ghost, Author of our sanctification, the Church today, before all else, recapitulates the great mystery by which we acknowledge and adore the Unity of Nature and Trinity of Persons in almighty God (Collect).

The dogma of the Holy Trinity is affirmed, in the liturgy, on every hand. It is in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost that we begin and end the Mass and Divine Office, and that we confer the Sacraments. All the Psalms end with the Gloria, the Hymns with the Doxology, and the Prayers by a conclusion in honor of the three Divine Persons. Twice during the Mass we are reminded that it is to the Holy Trinity that the Mass is being offered.

A votive Mass in honor of the Holy Trinity was composed in the seventh century, and in the eleventh century the Abbey of Cluny established the custom of using it for a feast of the Holy Trinity on this Sunday. Bishop Stephen of Liege composed its office in the tenth century. The feast was officially adopted by the Roman liturgy in 1334 at Avignon by Pope John XXII and was later promoted in rank by St. Pius X.

That we may ever be armed against all adversity, let us to-day, with the liturgy, make our solemn profession of faith in the Holy and Eternal Trinity and His indivisible Unity.”

 

A meditation from Dom Prosper Gueranger:

“The very essence of the Christian Faith consists in the knowledge and adoration of One God in Three Persons. This is the Mystery whence all others flow. Our Faith centers in this as in the master-truth of all it knows in this life, and as the infinite object whose vision is to form our eternal happiness; and yet, we only know it, because it has pleased God to reveal Himself thus to our lowly intelligence, which, after all, can never fathom the infinite perfections of that God, who necessarily inhabiteth light inaccessible (1 Tim. vi. 16). Human reason may, of itself, come to the knowledge of the existence of God as Creator of all beings; it may, by its own innate power, form to itself an idea of His perfections by the study of His works; but the knowledge of God’s intimate being can only come to us by means of His own gracious revelation.”

2018 Chartres Pilgrimage

Fr. Patrick Mackin’s (SSPX) account of the grueling three days of intense walking for these young crusades’ who have taken up this heroic endeavor to witness to prayer, penance & the Faith. Some day, I hope to join them!

Day 9. Saturday, May 19: Day 1 of the Pilgrimage from Chartres to Paris

Today is Saturday, May 19 and marks the first day of the Chartres Pilgrimage. This 3-day pilgrimage has a rich tradition dating back centuries, where students at the end of the academic year would make their way from Paris to Chartres to thank the Blessed Mother at her Cathedral for all the graces of the year. Since the days of the Episcopal Consecrations in 1988, the SSPX has organized a walk in the opposite direction. This year’s theme is “For the honor of Our Lord Jesus Christ.” This first day will be dedicated to Our Lord’s mission as Priest.

After attending an outdoor High Mass, we began walking around 10:00 am with strong feet and fresh muscles. As the day advanced and the miles accumulated, the smiles remained and were accompanied by so many good songs ranging from sacred polyphony and chant to American folk music and even cadences. One thing we knew is that to sing is to lighten the load of all who walk.

When we pulled into camp around 8:30 pm, After 27 miles, we were exhausted. For some, they knew the days ahead would mean the greatest physical challenge in their life so far as their feet were covered in blisters. For the others who were in better shape, they realized that the challenge would be more mental with the enduring of countless hours of walking with periods of silence and continued mental strain. However, for all of us, we knew this was a spiritual challenge more than an anything else. With several rosaries each day, constant meditations, outdoor Masses… the fight at hand was for the sanctification of our souls.

On this first day, the goal was not to lose our morale. We recalled during the walk the sufferings of the knights of Christendom during the first Crusades, when they took Antioch and while so close to Jerusalem, the men were too exhausted to fight from their wounds and fatigue. When they heard that another Muslim army was advancing on them, many of the men nearly despaired. However, that night God revealed to them that the Holy Lance which pierced the Heart of Christ was buried under the altar of a church. When they men found it, they revived their lost morale and began to surge with courage and emotion for Christ. The rest is history, as the Crusaders would advance on to victory. The outcome for us will be determined in a few days. However, what is obvious is that we will not make it to the end as individuals, but in the company of our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Day 10. Sunday, May 20: Day 2 of the Pilgrimage from Chartres to Paris

Today is May 20th, Pentecost Sunday. We endured the chilly night temperature in our sleeping bags. This was one of the hardest aspects of the pilgrimage, waking up in the freezing cold, at 5:30 am to speakers blaring music. Suddenly, the pain from your blisters on your feet are renewed as you put your shoes on and size up what kind of day it’s going to be. Nevertheless, even with all of this, our pilgrims were amazed to see the smiles and laughs filling the camp as people rushed along dropping off their luggage at the designated truck sites. We grabbed some bread and coffee and began the day’s 25 miles at 6:15 am. Today’s theme is Christ the Prophet. The organization that goes into this pilgrimage is a feat in itself. With over 4,000 people each with their luggage and food being transported to the next camping site; with numerous amounts of French scouts blocking intersections and controlling the route, and with an impressive number of first responders to give medical treatment, hand out water, etc. Also, on hand were the religious, mainly the good Sisters of the Society of Saint Pius X who so humbly tended to the injured feet of pilgrims and gave them much needed relief and comfort. We felt like we were truly the guests of honor in a foreign country as the pilgrimage’s Interpreters befriended our group and even rallied us on with chants of USA…USA…USA…

We arrived at the campsite by 5:30 pm and Holy Mass began at 6:00 pm. Exhausted, thirsty and in need of rest, the pilgrims knelt in an open field, as Bishop Bernard Fellay offered a sung Mass for the great feast of Pentecost.

The evening passed so quickly as we took account of our blessings of these past two days. However, foremost, on our minds was the fact that tomorrow we shall be in Paris and tomorrow evening we will once again be in the comfort of a nice hotel. This is our Good Friday… may we persevere to see the finish line.

Day 11. Monday, May 21: Day 3 of the Pilgrimage from Chartres to Paris

Finally, we have come to our last day of this pilgrimage. Today is Pentecost Monday, May 21. We began our walk at 6:40 am and we knew that this would be the easiest of the days, with only 16 miles separating us from Paris. The day seemed to pass so quickly as our level of joy and excitement was at an all-time high. Today’s theme is Christ the King.

It seemed as though our memories of the whole trip were resurfacing. The beauty and history of Ireland, the fun evenings filled with song and laughter, and all the friendships formed by true Christian charity, seemed to be driving the group now like an invisible hand. My words from the megaphone were essential in the first couple of days to keep everyone in pace and good spirits; however, today, periods of silence could be heard among our troops. The purpose of this pilgrimage had been accomplished, by the grace of God; these youths of the United States and one Australian were walking more out of the motive of love of God now than for anything else. As one pilgrim said, “Father, it has never been easier to practice virtue than on this pilgrimage.” Perhaps this will be the greatest lesson learned or reminded of us for the years ahead, to surround ourselves with wholesome friends and to always walk with God in the innocence of truth and the purity of life.

When we arrived in Paris, it was a most triumphant procession. Joined by Bishop Fellay and at least 100 priests, we made our way by the Eiffel Tower to Place Vauban, located in front of the magnificent Cathedral of the Invalides, built by King Louis XIV for the soldiers of France as they returned from battle.

When we finally made it to our hotel around 7:00 pm, we could all take a deep breath of relief. We did it! We walked the Chartres Pilgrimage. For dinner, we had a fabulous plate of food. The starter was a salad of smoked salmon and shrimp. For the main course, we were served roasted duck with orange citrus chutney and roasted potatoes. Dessert was a fruit custard pie. During the meal, the chaplains ordered six fine bottles of champagne for a final toast to commemorate all that we had been through.

The flags that were carried all throughout the trip were cut off their poles and given to those most deserving. The American flag went to Bernadette Dvorak, for her great spirit of happiness, fullness of life, and perseverance, the same stuff that made our country so great. The Papal Colors were given to Gregory Brown, a young man from Minnesota who displayed a beautiful love of the Faith during these days and who intends to enter the seminary this fall. Finally, the Irish Flag was given to Jessica McAtarian, who among all the pilgrims displayed an eagerness to absorb all of the history and culture during the Ireland tour. May God bless all of these fine young men and women as they return to their normal life. May the memory of this pilgrimage push them on to new heights of devotion to the threefold love of our hearts: God, Family, and Country!!!

In Christ the King,
Fr. Patrick Mackin

 

Archbishop Lefebvre – Great Theologian

The following is a testimony from the private theologian of Archbishop Lefebvre, Fr. Victor-Alain Berto, demonstrating that Archbishop Lefebvre was a man of the Church, a great theologian & Doctor of the Church even. Perhaps the Modernists could take this into account before rashly judging his motives for disobeying the Counciliar Church.

I say this in the presence of God: I had the very great and undeserved honor of being his theologian. Sworn confidentiality prevents me from speaking about the work that I did under him, but I betray no secret by telling you that Archbishop Lefebvre is a theologian, and by far superior to his own theologian, and God grant that all the [Council] Fathers might be theologians to the same degree as he is! He has a perfectly sure and refined theological habitus, to which his very great devotion to the Holy See adds that connaturality that allows him, even before discursive thinking intervenes, to discern intuitively what is and what is not compatible with the prerogatives of the Rock of the Church.

He in no way resembles those [Council] Fathers who, as one of them had the gall to boast publicly, used to take from the hands of a peritus [expert], in the car that was bringing them to St. Peter’s, the ‘ready-made’ text of their intervention in aula [in the Council Hall]. Not once did I submit to him a memorandum, a note, or an outline, without him reviewing, recasting, rethinking and sometimes rewriting them from start to finish, by his own personal, diligent work. I did not ‘collaborate’ with him; if the word were English I would say that I really ‘sublaborated’ with him [i.e., worked under his supervision], in keeping with my status as a private theologian and his honor and dignity as a Father of an Ecumenical Council, a Judge and Doctor of the Faith together with the Roman Pontiff.” (January 3, 1964)

The Tongue of Fire rested upon the Church

A Blessed Feast of Pentecost to you all! Veni Creator Spiritus!

Damsel of the Faith

“And when the days of the Pentecost were accomplished, they were all together in one place: And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a mighty wind coming, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them parted tongues as it were of fire, and it sat upon every one of them: And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they began to speak with divers tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak.” ~Acts 2:2-3

The Tongue of Fire appears in every Mass. Invisibly. When the priest calls down the Holy Ghost upon the bread and wine so that it may be changed into the Body and Blood of Christ, I have always imagined the Holy Ghost in both fiery spendor and light coming down to envelop the altar. It’s the invisible reality of the miracle that…

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Report about Fr. Daniel Cooper’s Funeral

Fr. Daniel Cooper, beloved priest of the Society for 31 years, was laid to rest on May 8th. The Solemn Requiem Mass was held at his beloved Queen of Angels and, per request, he was laid to rest in Dickinson, at Mt. Olivet Catholic Cemetary. Read the following report, from the SSPX website:

http://sspx.org/en/news-events/news/gallery-and-report-funeral-fr-daniel-cooper-may-8-2018-37686

Fr. Daniel Cooper, who reposed in the Lord on May 1, 2018 (Feast of St. Joseph the Worker), was laid to rest on Tuesday, May 8 at Mt. Olivet Catholic Cemetery in Dickinson, TX.

Prior to succumbing to cancer, Fr. Cooper faithfully served the U.S. District for many years. A man regarded for his kindness and dedication to the priesthood, it should come as little surprise that Fr. Cooper fought his cancer with patience, acceptance, and a joyful spirit.

A Solemn Day

Prior to Tuesday’s funeral Mass at Queen of Angels Catholic Church in Dickinson, a public Rosary was held for Fr. Cooper’s soul with the faithful filling the building. The Rosary was followed by all-night prayers.

When the time came to serve the solemn Requiem Mass for Fr. Cooper, over 20 priests were present in addition to the larger gathering of laity, all of whom could not fit into the church building. U.S. District Superior, Fr. Wegner, served the Mass with Fr. Kurtz acting as deacon and Fr. Haenny as subdeacon. Some of the priests in attendance sang in the schola while the rest joined the faithful in assisting at Mass and asking Our Lord to quickly usher Fr. Cooper’s soul to Heaven.

The choice to be buried at Mt. Olivet Cemetery was Fr. Cooper’s. Due to his many years of priestly service in Dickinson, he requested to be buried near the parish where he regularly said Mass, heard innumerable confessions, and served other sacraments according to the traditional Roman Rite for the salvation of souls.

Reflecting on the Life of Fr. Cooper

In his sermon that day, Fr. Wegner called attention to the fact that Fr. Cooper has been ordained, worked, suffered, and reposed all within the Society of Saint Pius X (SSPX). He had served the SSPX as a priest for 31 years. While at the time of his ordination, many held to the hope that the crisis in the Church would be over after a few years, it is now clear that crisis is bigger than the lives of the Society’s priests. How long will the crisis last? And, just as important, will the SSPX continue to have the spiritual and physical resources to combat it?

The SSPX, as Fr. Wegner went on to note, is no longer a “young fraternity.” In the half-a-century since its inception, the Society has experienced setbacks, buried its members, realized its limitations, but ultimately matured. A new generation of young, vibrant priests are now filling the SSPX’s ranks, though they are dependent on the example of veteran clergy like Fr. Cooper whose years of service brought with it invaluable lessons. It is to be hoped that once the older generation of Society priests has gone to their final reward, the next “wave” of Society clergy will have the tools to carry on the holy work started decades ago by Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.

In concluding his sermon, Fr. Wegner spoke of the need for the SSPX’s priests like Fr. Cooper. That is, the Society needs priests who love the priesthood itself and are faithful to their vocation while always remaining humble and meek. It is priests made in the mold of Fr. Cooper who will keep the SSPX healthy and vibrant in the coming decades, and, in God’s good time, see the faithful through the ongoing crisis in the Church.

In Conclusion

Following the funeral, burial, and reception, Fr. Cooper’s brother thanked Fr. Kurtz for the beautiful ceremony and for the care given to Fr. Cooper by the faithful in Dickinson. The clergy in attendance then made their way back to their priories, no doubt edified by the outpouring of love and prayer for Fr. Cooper they had just witnessed. And the faithful themselves, who also came from all over the United States to pray their respects, can now carry with them a solemn memory of just how important our priests are for the future of the Catholic Church and the cessation of the crisis.