Sunday, July 31, 2011


I read another blog, Praytell, that is about the liturgy. It is a bit more like the National Catholic Reporter in that there is crafted into many of its posts and comments a negativity about the Church and any and everything about her current condition.

Vatican II is proclaimed, its theology, its vision, its understanding of the Church, its reform; its this, that and the other which so many of that blog's commenters believe bad old Pope Benedict and so many bishops and priests are trying to undo today.

Living in the Evangelical south and enamored by Evangelical Catholicism, I want to puke. Ever since Vatican II, those who made an idol out of a Church Council have been promoting Vatican II as though this Council should be worshiped and obeyed as God Almighty.

Time and time again, a clinical approach to the Church, her Liturgy and her life leaves one thinking, where is Jesus Christ. Idolatry abounds when Liturgy is an "end unto itself" rather than the means whereby God Almighty connects us to Himself in the most personal and also the most communal way possible. We're not to see the Mass as us connecting to it, but the Mass as God's means to bring us into communion with the Most Holy Trinity. That is a big difference.

Obviously Vatican II was meant to be a great blessing for the Church and to unleash Catholicism's evangelicalism, that would enable Catholics who are nourished and sustained by the Church's liturgy to go into the world and lead others to Christ by the example of their lives and their joyful hope. Catholic "lite" as George Weigel calls is, has failed miserably.

I like George Weigel's article on the new Archbishop of Philadelphia, Charles Chaput and the Archbishop's emphasis on evangelical Catholicism.

Saturday, July 30, 2011


Restored and Renovated St. Joseph Cathedral, Sioux Falls

This is a photo BEFORE the renovation (restoration would be a better word). This style of renovation was very popular immediately following Vatican II and the unwarranted iconoclasm of traditional churches of this nature. Please note that the altar is to one side and the ambo to another so that it would not appear that the altar was more important than the ambo and that both had the same importance, meaning the presence of Christ in the Word proclaimed and the presence of Christ in the Eucharist celebrated. Never mind that in the 1962 missal, the Word was proclaimed from the altar thus giving it a dignity that is required but the post Vatican II design diminishes the dignity of both the word and the Eucharist in this photo. Savannah's cathedral was almost renovated like this in the 1970's. It was the wave of the future back then. How tiresome!

Back to the Future or photos of the renovation or restoration--this is what we call the reform of the reform but within the continuity of the Pre-Vatican II Church:

Friday, July 29, 2011


Pope Benedict and the Catholic Church are under attack from the secular and religious media, from within the Church and outside of the Church and now from governments. In some cases it revolves around a Puritanical understanding of what the Catholic Church should be and of course she has never been or will be. In other ways it revolves around another form of "Puritanism" that doesn't understand the nature of sin, evil and the devil and the influence of all three upon those called and chosen by God to lead the Church not to mention the person in the pew.

While there is room for valid criticism of the institutions and people who run the Church and who are called to holiness; there is a destructive way that seeks revenge and strives toward annihilation.

I think the Catholic Church is facing a "Reformation" period and that there may well be a major schism. But this schism will not be to form another Church or denomination, but rather a secular, agnostic perhaps even atheistic way of living. When this occurs, the state will triumph for a time, like Hitler's state, Stalin's state and all the other despotic regimes that have tried to manipulate the Church to diminish her true influence.

Yes we need a counter-reformation and I think Pope Benedict is the one who is leading it and preparing others to step in when he will not be able to do so. Time will tell. But the Church has been through much worse; but not reported as quickly and as widely as today.

At any rate, pray for the Holy Father, the bishops in union with him and for all who are Catholic.




When it comes to receiving Holy Communion, it is not either standing or kneeling, on the tongue or in the hand, but both. Both are options for the communicant and both have guidelines directing the communicant on how to receive properly.

Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster, London tells it like it is.



First a disclaimer; I was trained prior to entering the seminary in 1976 that standing for Holy Communion was "more adult" "more ancient" and "a resurrection stance" that was much better than kneeling in a subservient way before the priest which was also described as being "juvenile." This was taught to St.Joseph parishioners in Augusta, Georgia at that time. We were probably one of the last parishes, apart from Tybee Island, who continued to kneel for Holy Communion until about 1975.

I have taught religiously that standing for Holy Communion was more ancient than kneeling and more importantly it was a sign of "being raised up with Christ in His resurrection." I truly like that imagery.

However I am old enough to remember kneeling at the altar railing (in 1975 I was 21 years old) and remembering how nice it was to be waiting for the priest to come to me and having the ability to wait a moment after receiving before getting up and returning to the pew. It was nice kneeling with others around the "table," I mean, altar and it really seemed to me that we were participating in a meal at the altar, with the railing as an extension of the the altar-table.

Many people also felt that kneeling was a "more" reverent way to receive Holy Communion. Evidently they are in good company. Read on:

Spanish cardinal recommends that Catholics receive Communion on the tongue

Lima, Peru, Jul 28, 2011 / 01:56 pm (CNA).- Spanish Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera recently recommended that Catholics receive Communion on the tongue, while kneeling.

“It is to simply know that we are before God himself and that He came to us and that we are undeserving,” the prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments said in an interview with CNA during his visit to Lima, Peru.

The cardinal’s remarks came in response to a question on whether Catholics should receive Communion in the hand or on the tongue.

He recommended that Catholics “receive Communion on the tongue and while kneeling.”

Receiving Communion in this way, the cardinal continued, “is the sign of adoration that needs to be recovered. I think the entire Church needs to receive Communion while kneeling.” [Get that? "entire Church". And he means the Latin Church, of course.]

“In fact,” he added, “if one receives while standing, a genuflection or profound bow should be made, and this is not happening.”

“If we trivialize Communion, we trivialize everything, and we cannot lose a moment as important as that of receiving Communion, of recognizing the real presence of Christ there, of the God who is the love above all loves, as we sing in a hymn in Spanish.”

In response to a question about the liturgical abuses that often occur, Cardinal Canizares said they must be “corrected, especially through proper formation: formation for seminarians, for priests, for catechists, for all the Christian faithful.”

Such a formation should ensure that liturgical celebrations take place “in accord with the demands and dignity of the celebration, in accord with the norms of the Church, which is the only way we can authentically celebrate the Eucharist,” he added.

“Bishops have a unique responsibility” in the task of liturgical formation and the correction of abuses, the cardinal said, “and we must not fail to fulfill it, because everything we do to ensure that the Eucharist is celebrated properly will ensure proper participation in the Eucharist.”

My final comments: As for receiving Holy Communion in the hand, I have seen many people do so in the most reverent way. But I have seen many unintended abuses: walking off with the host and consuming it on the "run"; children moving their small, almost cupped hands to quickly and receiving unthinkingly as though putting pop corn in their mouths, and people taking the host and leaving it in the pew, in their pockets or giving it away to others.

The good Cardinal is also a prefect for the Vatican's Congregation of Divine Worship. Floating statements of this type indicates to me that we will soon be seeing a "mandate" of some sort to return to this pious practice of distributing and receiving Holy Communion. How long has the Holy Father been doing it as a model for other bishops to help them to see how it is done and to prepare them for this change?

Thursday, July 28, 2011


So much has happened since I left for vacation on July 7th. The biggest news is that it took me leaving for vacation for our Holy Father to name a new bishop for the Diocese of Savannah! There are two big surprises here! the first is that he has ministered in the Archdiocese of Atlanta For the past 15 years as a pastor of my former parochial vicar's home parish, Saint Philip Benizi and he is a Franciscan priest. Who would have thought?

I'm posting two videos of note. Bishop elect Gregory J. Hartmayer's video upon arriving in the diocese for his announcement and Fr. Dawid Kwiatkowski's homily for the memorial Mass of the late Lauren Giddings. Fr. Dawid was just ordained in June and arrived int he parish four days before I departed for vacation and did a marvelous ministry in my absence. Oh to have the energy of youth and his faith!

WMAZ TV in Macon carried live on their internet page the memorial Mass for Lauren Giddings. This portion is Fr. Dawid Kwiatkowski preaching the homily. We're all very proud of Fr. Dawid who took care of the parish in such a wonderful way!


Sunday, July 3, 2011


I'm on vacation through July 28th! So I more than likely won't blog, but I can post comments on posts already posted! It's good to decompress from the internet, but if I break down and buy an IPAD or lap top, maybe I'll blog! God bless. Fr. Allan McDonald

Saturday, July 2, 2011


This Sunday, July 3rd at 2:00 PM, St. Joseph Church, Macon will celebrate the Latin Low Mass in the Extraordinary Form. (Our men's schola is away!) Below is an "unofficial" English translation of the Mass for the 3rd Sunday after Pentecost. The more and more I hear or read the official introit, offertory and communion antiphons either sung or spoken the more I realize what a shame it was not to mandate these for the Ordinary Form of the Mass. These still exist for every Sunday and every day in the Ordinary Form but fell out of use when liturgists said that if they weren't sung, these shouldn't be spoken and then preferred metrical hymns of a vast variety of theologies over the Scriptural texts of these antiphons that in many cases tie the entire liturgy of the day together as a unified gift to God and His people. Let's get back to the official texts of the Mass and sing devotional music only as filler!

Ps. 24:16, 18.
Look toward me, and have pity on me, O Lord, for I am alone and afflicted. Put an end to my affliction and my suffering, and take away all my sins, O my God.
Ps 24:1-2
To You, I lift up my soul, O Lord. In You, O my God, I trust; let me not be put to shame.
V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
Look toward me, and have pity on me, O Lord, for I am alone and afflicted. Put an end to my affliction and my suffering, and take away all my sins, O my God.

Let us pray
O God, protector of all who hope in You, without Whom nothing is strong, nothing is holy, increase Your mercy toward us, that, with Your guidance and direction we may so pass through the things of this temporal life as not to lose those of life eternal.
Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
R. Amen.

Lesson from the first letter of St Peter the Apostle
1 Pet 5:6-11.
Beloved: Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in the time of visitation; cast all your anxiety upon Him, because He cares for you. Be sober, be watchful! For your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, goes about seeking someone to devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same suffering befalls your brethren all over the world. But the God of all grace, Who has called us unto His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will Himself, after we have suffered a little while, perfect, strengthen and establish us. To Him is the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
R. Thanks be to God.

Ps. 54:23, 17, 19.
Cast your care upon the Lord, and He will support you.
V. When I called upon the Lord, He heard my voice from those who war against me. Alleluia, alleluia.
V. Ps. 7:12. A just judge is God, strong and patient; is He angry every day? Alleluia.

Cleanse my heart and my lips, O almighty God, who didst cleanse the lips of the prophet Isaias with a burning coal, and vouchsafe, through Thy gracious mercy, so to purify me, that I may worthily announce Thy holy Gospel. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Give me Thy blessing, O Lord. The Lord be in my heart and on my lips, that I may worthily and in a becoming manner, proclaim His holy Gospel. Amen.
P. The Lord be with you.
S. And with thy spirit.
Continuation of the Holy Gospel according to Luke
R. Glory be to Thee, O Lord.
Luke 15:1-10.
At that time, the publicans and sinners were drawing near to Him to listen to Him. And the Pharisees and the Scribes murmured, saying, This man welcomes sinners and eats with them. But He spoke to them this parable, saying, What man of you having a hundred sheep, and losing one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the desert, and go after that which is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it upon his shoulders rejoicing. And on coming home he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, because I have found my sheep that was lost.’ I say to you that, even so, there will be joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, more then over ninety-nine just who have no need of repentance. Or what woman, having ten drachmas, if she loses one drachma, does not light a lamp and sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? And when she has found it, she calls together her friends and neighbors, saying, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found the drachma that I had lost.’ Even so, I say to you, there will be joy among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.
R. Praise be to Thee, O Christ.
S. By the words of the Gospel may our sins be blotted out.

Offertory Antiphon
P. The Lord be with you.
S. And with thy spirit.
Let us pray.
Ps. 9:11-13.
They trust in You who cherish Your name, O Lord, for You forsake not those who seek You. Sing praise to the Lord enthroned in Sion, for He has not forgotten the cry of the afflicted.

Look favorably, O Lord, upon the offerings of Your prayerful Church and grant that those who believe may, in continual holiness, partake of the them for their salvation.
Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
R. Amen.

P. The Lord be with you.
S. And with thy spirit.
P. Lift up your hearts.
S. We have lifted them up to the Lord.
P. Let us give thanks to the Lord our God.
S. It is meet and just.

Holy Trinity
It it truly meet and just, right and for our salvation, that we should at all times, and in all places, give thanks unto Thee, O holy Lord, Father almighty, everlasting God; Who, together with Thine only-begotten Son, and the Holy Ghost, art one God, one Lord: not in the oneness of a single Person, but in the Trinity of one substance. For what we believe by Thy revelation of Thy glory, the same do we believe of Thy Son, the same of the Holy Ghost, without difference or separation. So that in confessing the true and everlasting Godhead, distinction in persons, unity in essence, and equality in majesty may be adored. Which the Angels and Archangels, the Cherubim also and Seraphim do praise: who cease not daily to cry out, with one voice saying:

Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of Sabaoth! Heaven and earth are full of Thy glory! Hosanna in the highest! Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!

Communion Antiphon
Luke 15:10.
I say to you: there is joy among the angels of God over one sinner who repents.

Post Communion
P. The Lord be with you.
S. And with thy spirit.
Let us pray
May the holy things of which we have partaken bring us to life and prepare for Your everlasting mercy those whom You have cleansed from sin.
Through Jesus Christ, thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end.
R. Amen.

Friday, July 1, 2011


Liturgical progressives are seeing red with this article. I link it to you; you decide if it is spot on or meant to provoke seeing red progressives.



Lauren Giddings had not been seen since this past Saturday. On Thursday a missing persons report was made. She is a Mercer Law School graduate, studying for her bar exam and about to move to Atlanta. She came to daily Mass at St.Joseph Church frequently.

Thursday noon a dismembered body of a female, yet to be identified because of its condition was found outside Lauren's downtown apartment.

God rest her soul and may her family be comforted.