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Tuesday, January 28, 2020

BUT FATHER, WHEN THE PRIEST FACES ME, I FEEL LIKE HE’S TALKING TO ME AND I AM WITH JESUS AT THE LAST SUPPER—WHAT’S WRONG WITH THAT? PLENTY!



Why does the priest have his back to us? Here’s why:

Ad orientem are the Latin words for, “toward the East.” In Catholic usage it can mean either the geographical east or the east of any Catholic Church building regardless of the actual geographical orientation of the building. Thus, when entering any Catholic Church, the area where the altar is located is the “eastern” side of the Church.

From the earliest centuries of the Church until about 1966, Catholic Mass was celebrated with all, bishop or priest facing the altar in the same direction as the laity, facing the east, facing Jerusalem, facing the rising sun, facing the direction from whence Jesus will return at the end of time and also at the altar at the consecration.  It is a mistake to say that the priest has his back to the people, as true as this might look, but it is more accurate to say the priest is facing the same direction as the laity and in a leadership stance or marching forward to the Kingdom of God as on a pilgrimage.

Ad orientem makes clear what is spoken by the priest is directed toward God when facing the same direction as the laity. And it makes clear too, what is spoken to the laity by the priest, when he turns toward them for greetings, etc.
It also takes the emphasis off the priest’s looks, piety and personality. The priest “stands in” for Christ at the altar, especially at the consecration. Facing the same direction as the laity, the priest could be anyone, the pope or the lowliest priest. It doesn’t matter.

Ad orientem also emphasizes the Sacrificial aspect of the Eucharistic Prayer. It is not a reenactment of Holy Thursday’s Last Supper. It is a prayer to God recalling how Jesus memorialized His Good Friday Sacrifice on the night before He died. The words, “take eat” and “take drink” are not meant for the congregation in the Eucharistic Prayer. It is directed to God recalling Jesus’s words. The Bread and Wine become the Risen Lord and His one Sacrifice is offered to the Father though the priest representing Christ during the consecration and afterwards. At the Sacrificial Banquet following the Canon of the Mass is when God gives back to us His Crucified and Risen Son.

The Eucharistic Sacrificial Banquet or “meal” occurs after the Lord’s Prayer when the priest turns to the Congregation and says, “Behold the Lamb of God…, blessed are those called to the Supper of the Lamb". The Rite of Holy Communion is the “Sacrificial Meal” aspect of the Mass, not the Eucharistic Prayer. This is confused when the priest faces the congregation during the entire Eucharistic Prayer and makes it appear to be words directed to the Congregation, which of course it isn’t.This is especially true if the celebrant motions to the people with the bread and chalice as though the words are directed to them as apostles at the Last Supper. Of course, the Mass is not a memorial of the Last Supper, the Mass, established at the Last Supper is the Memorial of Good Friday and Christ's One Sacrifice on the Cross, but in a glorified way, due to the Resurrection of our Lord on Easter Sunday. 



THIS WILL PUSH THE UNSCRUPULOUS ABOUT CONTAGIONS AT MASS OFF THE DEEP END!

As coronavirus spreads, churches outside China take preventive measures

Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand are the worst affected outside the mainland, and the Diocese of Hong Kong issued guidelines that included all priests and Eucharistic ministers wearing surgical masks while distributing Communion.


In a Jan. 23 statement, the diocese noted the epidemic was only considered “serious.” “In the event that the epidemic is raised to the ’emergency’ category, our pastoral guidelines will be revised accordingly,” the statement said.
The diocese noted that hospitals had suspended day-to-day visits and said Eucharistic ministers and visitors should abstain from visiting or giving Communion to sick people in hospitals. If a priest is needed for the sacrament of the sick, “he should comply with the directions of the hospital, consult the matron of the ward concerned, and wear a surgical mask. Before leaving the ward, he must wash his hands.”
Diocesan guidelines included cleaning directions - including microphones used by lectors - and instructed people to bow their heads instead of shaking hands during the sign of peace.

DO CHILDREN'S MASSES HAVE TO BE CHILDISH? IN A WORD, NO!

We have a monthly "children's Mass" at our Sunday 10:30 AM High Mass. By High Mass in the Ordinary Form, I mean, everything is chanted including the priest's prayers. We also chant the propers. Incense is used.

At our children's Mass, we have young people as lectors, ushers and our excellent children's choir sings. We have a child cantor who is one of the best cantors we have in the parish with a well trained voice. She's excellent and often cantors at our normal Sunday Mass.

The homily is children friendly, to the point and also meaningful and challenging for the adults. They actually listen, both the children and adults!

This past Sunday was also the first ever Sunday of the Word of God. I invited parishioners to bring their Bibles to Mass. These were blessed at the conclusion of the Universal Prayer.









Monday, January 27, 2020

USHERS GREETING PARISHIONERS FOR SUNDAY MASS IN CHINA AND ELSEWHERE


WHEREIN I FIND A WONDERFUL TESTIMONY FROM A YOUNG PERSON WHO LOVES THE EF MASS AND THERE ARE A SLEW OF THEM WHO DO LOVE IT AND FIND STRENGHT FOR THEIR LIVES THROUGH IT

As I was looking for Mass photos on the internet, I saw a photo of an EF Mass at St. Joseph Church I celebrated several years ago. I clicked the link and the blogger, a young person who goes to the EF Mass, described what it meant to him. By the way, he uses many photos taken by my friend and parishioner Dr. Buck Melton who charted my life in photos at St. Joseph Church in Macon.

About Those Young, “Rigid”, Traditional Catholics

More and more, Millennial Catholics are flocking en masse to traditional practices and devotions, to the horror of many. But is such fear necessary?



You can read the entire testimony here but below is a soundbite: 

With the exception of a handful of wackos on the Internet, most of us who attend the Latin Mass are actually pretty decent people, if only by God’s grace. We are not liturgical idolaters, nor are we blind to the needs of our marginalized brothers and sisters. We do not hate community — we actually embrace it. After every Latin Mass I have been to in the past 6 months, there has been a coffee hour & social following. One parish I know of cooks meals every week for the homeless and economically disadvantaged. Another parish has mission trips to Appalachia, one of the poorest areas in the United States. Is this the work of individualistic, narcissistic haters of the marginalized? I don’t think so.

Then this morning I received this email from Dr. Felix Maher who is the MC for the Cathedral's EF Mass (which I celebrated yesterday):

Fr Allan,
I was at a neighbors dinner party tonight: the discussion in kitchen about the Latin Mass and how much it strengthens their faith and their life.  They are all under 30. 


My Comment: Maybe the EF Mass is the wave of the future! They say if you hear babies crying at Mass, your parish has a future. That's certainly true of the Cathedral's EF Mass!

Finally, after yesterday's EF Mass, a young man of about 22 years old came up to me and asked for a personal blessing. He is being prepared to become a Catholic. He was Baptist. A friend of his would invite him to an EF Mass at an FSSP parish in Ocala, Florida. He fell in love with the Mass which enhanced his already personal relationship with the Lord he cultivated at a Southern Baptist from northern Mississippi where there are few Catholics. He's a college student interning at Savannah's Gulf Stream Jet plant. He is an impressive young want-to-be Catholic who loves the EF Mass.

NOTHING IN A PARISH, ESPECIALLY THE MASS AND OTHER SACRAMENTS, IS ABOUT THE PRIEST BUT THAT IS WHAT HAS HAPPENED SINCE VATICAN II AND NOT ONLY THAT IT IS ALSO ALL ABOUT THE CONGREGATION TOO





As well, the fact that Archbishop Nelson Perez is a priest of Philadelphia made him an odd candidate to become the city's archbishop. No diocese has a more pronounced reputation for clericalism, and his task is to continue to dismantle that clerical culture. Perhaps it is easier for someone to do it from the inside. During his installation sermon in Cleveland, he recalled what he had told the people at the church when he first became a pastor: "Do not make the mistake of making this about me." That kind of humility is a good antidote to clericalism. He went on to say, "Fifty years from now, I will just be a picture on a wall."

I copy the above quote from the nastiest commentator at the National Chismatic Reporter (NCR), Michael Sean Winters. You can read the complete nasty commentary HERE. He hates Archbishop Chaput because he teaches the Catholic Faith and is a culture warrior like so many saints of old (in the pre-Vatican II Church, many martyred for their Faith for be such, by the way).

Michael Sean Winters, though, seems to lament, the hypocrite that he is, that Archbishop Perez isn't a culture warrior in the "leftist" sense of the word, promoting a post Catholic Church that acquiesces to the culture rather than challenges the prevailing culture. That says much for Archbishop Perez, though.

However, I agree with what the new Archbishop of Philadelphia had to say about priests and bishops.

Certainly there were celebrity priests prior to Vatican II, but they didn't make their celebrity with the Mass, although they may have preached with a flair. Why wasn't the Mass all about who they are?

1. The Mass was/is ad orientem.

2. The Mass was in Latin

3. And if the priest sat down during Mass, it wasn't at a throne dead center and at the highest point of the church, it was off to the side and never facing the people!

The Ordinary Form of the Mass can learn a lot from the Extraordinary Form of the Mass about humbling priests and getting rid of clericalism during the Mass.

Look over the pictures above and tell me which one is about the priest and which one isn't.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

POSED PHOTOS IN THE CATHEDRAL’S SACRED HEART/BLESSED SACRAMENT CHAPEL WHICH LOOK LIKE SOME FAMOUS DRAWINGS OF THE TRADITIONAL MASS

And look ma, electric lamps! And check out how the first two photos resemble the last two photos! Cool, no?





DISCUSS!

Two altars, two ways of celebrating Mass. When "new and improved" is an epic lie foisted on the Church by unscrupulous room decorators and unscrupulous liturgical theologians.


ETERNAL REST GRANT UNTO HIM, HIS DAUGHTER AND THE OTHERS AND LET PERPETUAL LIGHT SHINE UPON THEM

Remembering Kobe Bryant: Formed and saved by his Catholic faith

SAN ANTONIO,TX - FEBRUARY 6: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers watches tribute at AT&T Center on February 6, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that , by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)


Ronald Cortes/Getty Image

How a priest changed Kobe Bryant’s life

This article was originally published in April of 2016. Sadly, Kobe Bryant, along with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and the three others, passed away in a helicopter crash on January 26, 2020. May they rest in eternal peace. 
On Wednesday, April 13, 2016, Kobe Bryant, one of the greatest athletes of all time, ended his 20-year basketball career with a bang, scoring 60 points in his last game.
While Bryant’s stats can be recited by many — five-time NBA champion, two-time Olympic champion, 18-time All-Star and the third leading scorer in NBA history — few know about the role his Catholic faith played in helping him through one of his darkest hours.
Born in Philadelphia, Kobe Bryant was raised in a Catholic household and even spent some of his youth in Italy. Drafted into the NBA at the age of 17, he eventually married Vanessa Laine at St. Edward Roman Catholic Church in Dana Point, California. Two years later they had their first child. Bryant was at the top of his game and everything seemed to be heading in the direction of his dreams.
Then he made a big mistake.
In 2003, Kobe Bryant was accused of raping a woman in his hotel room, while he was in Colorado for knee surgery. He admitted having sex with the woman but denied rape. A judge eventually dropped the charges, but the woman went on to file a civil lawsuit against Bryant that was settled outside of court. In the midst of it all, he issued a public apology, stating that he was sincerely ashamed of what he had done.
The incident had major consequences as numerous sponsors abandoned him and his reputation was tarnished. In 2011, his wife filed for divorce.
Yet during one of the darkest moments of his life, Kobe Bryant turned to his Catholic faith. In an interview with GQ in 2015 he explained:
“The one thing that really helped me during that process — I’m Catholic, I grew up Catholic, my kids are Catholic — was talking to a priest. It was actually kind of funny: He looks at me and says, ‘Did you do it?’ And I say, ‘Of course not.’ Then he asks, ‘Do you have a good lawyer?’ And I’m like, ‘Uh, yeah, he’s phenomenal.’ So then he just said, ‘Let it go. Move on. God’s not going to give you anything you can’t handle, and it’s in his hands now. This is something you can’t control. So let it go.’ And that was the turning point.”
After some rough years, Kobe Bryant reconciled with his wife, and they remain married to this day. Together they have founded the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation (KVBFF), which is dedicated to, among other things, helping young people in need, encouraging the development of physical and social skills through sports and assisting the homeless. Asked about this commitment in 2013, Bryant’s answer would likely have made Pope Francis very happy:
My career is winding down. At the end of my career, I don’t want to look back and just say, “Well, I had a successful career because I won so many championships and scored so many points.” There’s something else that you have to do with that.
[The homelessness] issue is one that kind of gets pushed on the back burner because it’s easy to point the blame at those who are homeless and say, “Well, you made that bad decision. This is where you are. It’s your fault.” In life, we all make mistakes and to stand back and allow someone to live that way and kind of wash your hands of it … that’s not right.
Throughout all of his trials, and perhaps even in response to them, Bryant has realized that fame and fortune were nothing compared to the importance of faith and family. When everyone else in the world abandoned him, the Catholic Church was always there.
He may be an All-Star and NBA legend, but even superstars can use the foundational support of faith-formation, and a good priest to turn to.

THOSE DANG PROGRESSIVE JESUITS EVEN IN 1922!!!!

I just had a comment on a post I had about Masses at St. Ignatius Church in Chicago in 1922! The commenter asked if I noticed the electric lamps on the altar with lampshades no less.

And no I did not notice these two lambshaded lamps which indeed are electric lamps.

I widened the photos and sure enough.

Keep in mind this is 1922 and maybe the lighting in the Church was very poor. I have seen light bulbs  affixed upon the six altar candlesticks in Rome and of course electrified, But I have never seen this before. If you look at these photos on an ipad or iPhone, you can widen it to see it along with the electric cord!

Cool for 1922:



TAKING A LIBERTY ON THE DEBUT OF THE SUNDAY OF THE WORD OF GOD AND WHAT ABOUT CANDLEMAS NEXT SUNDAY FOR BOTH THE EF AND OF?



Did you experience the debut of the Sunday of the Word of God that Pope Francis promulgated for the 3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time each year? What's great about this, is that the 3rd Sunday after Epiphany are the same Sunday in both forms. I preached about it at the Cathedral's EF Mass today.

But this is what I did in my parish:

Last week I invited the congregation to bring their home and personal bibles to Mass today for a special blessing of these. At the time of the Universal Prayer, the last three petitions focused on the Bibles and God's word and the closing prayer was a prayer of blessing of the Bibles. Then I blessed them with Holy Water as the people held them aloft. Many brought their Bibles and many multiple Bibles.

But I got creative at the time of the Gospel, if you will forgive me!!!! It was a spontaneous gesture on my part. I don't normally chant the Gospel in the OF Mass, so I did so today.

But drumroll, please:  I know, I know it is illicit and reserved for bishops only in the Ordinary Form, but come on guys it is the Sunday of the word of God.  At the end of the Gospel, our custom at St. Anne is to sing the Alleuia again. And I thought to myself, "self, it is the first every Sunday of the Word of God" why not bless the people with the Book of the Gospel? Which I did. The Doctors of Liturgical Law: have at it!

Now let's turn to next Sunday's Candlemas which happily falls on a Sunday! This happens every six or seven years or so.

Did your priest tell you about it, first of all. And secondly did he invited you to bring home candles to church next Sundayfor the blessing?

Has your parish ordered enough vigil candles with wax catchers to be passed out next Sunday? In the OF Candlemas, the congregation holds lighted candles which are then blessed. At our 10:30 AM Mass, I will ask the congregation to go outside for this blessing and then procession into the church.

At the other Masses we will use the simple form of blessing.

Did you hear anything about any of these at your parish, the Sunday of the Word of God and Candlemas next Sunday?

IS IT GOOD TO BE A GERMAPHOBE OR GERM FREAK?


With the flu and worse yet, the coronavirus, shouldn’t parishes take more precautions to prevent an epidemic? Isn’t the most dangerous practice, totally unnecessary in the Mass the common chalice where communicants voluntarily places their entire mouth on the rim of the chalice leaving saliva that could include blood particles and other potential disease carrying germs? Isn't the simplest precaution to eliminate the unnecessary common chalice?

I wonder if an SSPX Mass is healthier as these congregations are more reserved; there isn’t a lot of hugging, hand shaking or other such things during the liturgy, like hand-holding and certainly no common chalice. More than likely a keener sense of mortal sin and the necessity to make a worthy Holy Communion prevents the entire congregation from going the the railing to receive Holy Communion unlike the hoards who do at an Ordinary Form Mass, not the railing of course, the Communion stations scattered about. Ordinary Form Catholics, for many, not all, think that going to Holy Communion is just something you do and get no matter what.

I happen to think a priest touches more hands accidentally when distributing Holy Communion to the communicant’s hands. I know I do. Not so with Communion on the tongue, although accidentally touching a communicant's lips or tongue occurs, but less frequently, if not at all, if the communicant kneels at a railing; thus the priest reaches down to the tongue not up to the tongue with a standing communicant.

And what about this? In an EF Mass no one would mind if only the priest received Holy Communion on behalf of the congregation. Technically communion to the laity isn’t in the EF Roman Missal! Did you know that?

Weekly Communion to the laity is a luxury and could easily be dispensed at an EF Mass packed with Catholics during an epidemic. And no one would complain. 

Not so in an Ordinary Form Mass. 

Interesting, no?

News channels are saying that we will soon see Americans wearing face masks as they do in Japan. Are Japanese germ freaks? Evidently. And for good reason.

In fact I heard on the news that face masks are in short supply in the USA as Americans are buying them up in anticipation of the Coronovirus becoming a worldwide pandemic!   Tigers, lions and bears, o my!!!!

Will we pass out face masks to parishioners entering our churches for Mass and forgo passing out Holy Communion?

What do you think?

NICK SANDMAN RETURNS TRIUMPHANTLY TO THE MARCH FOR LIFE!

This is a great post Vatican II teenager!

Nick Sandmann posts photos of his return to March for Life

'I will never pass on an opportunity to March for Life!' says the teen.


Featured Image

GOOD GRIEF, COVINGTON CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL IN THE NEWS AGAIN

Covington Catholic bus returning from Washington’s March for Life involved in fatal crash in Kentucky

  • Associated Press
    Jan 25, 2020
Covington Catholic bus involved in fatal crash in Kentucky