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Showing posts from December, 2006

A former Swedish Lutheran tells his story

From the December 2006 issue of "The Angelus"

In October 2006, The Angelus covered the conversion of a Lutheran pastor (Sten Sandmark) and his associate (Joacim Svensson) in Sweden. Joacim is now studying at St. Mary's College in St. Mary's, Kansas, ... in preparation to enter the seminary. We asked him some questions about his conversion and his thoughts and impressions about the Faith.

Joacim, the story of a conversion in our days of crisis is so extraordinary, I hardly know where to begin. Tell us about your family background and religious upbringing.
I had no religion in my upbringing whatsoever. I was confirmed in the Lutheran Church when I was 14, and that was a path to belief in Christ.

What led you to getting "confirmed"?
I just felt it was the right thing to do–and it was almost a calling. There were about 200 of us that were confirmed that year. And I was the only one of 200 who remained…Lutheran.

How does Sweden fare in religious practice?
Among the 9 m…

Cardinal Castrillón's response to Una Voce

This is not exactly breaking news, but we publish it here also for the record.

Following the very public statements of the bishops of eastern France in October and the comments of certain German bishops after their ad limina visits to Rome in November it appeared imperative that the FIUV made its voice heard in Rome to speak on behalf of the laity and those many faithful parish priests who wished to celebrate the traditional Mass with greater freedom.

On November 24th, the President, Jack Oostveen, Secretary Leo Darroch, and Treasurer Mrs Monika Rheinschmitt visited Rome and had meetings in the Congregation for the Clergy, The Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei, the Congregation for Divine Worship, and the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. In order to restore the balance of the inaccurate picture presented in Rome by various prelates, the FIUV delegates presented a dossier of the reality of life in many countries under the restrictions on the celebration of the traditional Mas…

Polish intellectuals sign "Tridentine" manifesto

Read the Polish original, also undersigned by several important Polish politicians, including the Speaker of the Lower House of the National Parliament, here (or here).
We are with you, Holy Father!

Declaration on the use of the Traditional Liturgy

In light of ever more frequent statements of close associates of the Holy Father, who confirm his intention of restoring the right and freedom of use of the traditional liturgy in the Latin rite, as faithful laymen of the Roman Catholic Church we wish to express our hope and gratitude.

We would also like to affirm our solidarity with the Pope, mindful that for many years prior to taking up his seat as the Apostolic Successor of Saint Peter, he took up efforts to ensure that reverent liturgical forms passed on in a long tradition and confirmed officially by Saint Pius [V] "according to the rites and customs of the Roman Church" (Apostolic Constitution Quo Primum, Pope St. Pius V, July 14th 1570) were preserved so as to "hand on th…

Not exactly urgent...

...but we will mention it, anyway, just for the record, which we like to keep here.

It was mentioned by some in early October that the Secretary of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei", Monsignor Camille Perl, had said that a measure "favoring" the Traditional Latin Mass would be taken by the Pope. This was finally confirmed in the recently-released periodical newsletter of the Abbey of Sainte-Madeleine du Barroux, where Perl spent a few days in October and where he "confirm[ed]the will of the Holy Father to make something soon to ease the access to the ancient form of the Roman Rite" (p. 3).

Ex ore infantium, Deus, et lactentium
perfecisti laudem propter inimicos tuos.

Merry Christmas!
Christmastide Recess
Urgent news may be posted at any time

The liturgy under Benedict
One year of Rorate Cæli

This blog was started in December 2005, on Rorate Sunday (the Fourth Sunday of Advent, after whose Introit, Rorate cæli desuper, the blog was named). Since we follow the liturgical year of the Roman Rite as our own calendar, today, the Fourth Sunday of Advent (which will not be commemorated this year, since it falls on December 24, the Vigil of the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ), marks our first anniversary.

We would like to thank our many visitors for their kindness to this work, which we try to accomplish purely out of love for Holy Mother Church, with no wish for any material benefit whatsoever. We apologize for any inconvenience it may have caused to any reader.

As we begin this new liturgical year, approaching Christmastide, it seems appropriate to remember what the year has brought, recalling the first text published here in 2006: "Will the Liturgical Mess go on in 2006?". In that text, we made some references to scandalous liturgical practices in a Brazilian Jesu…

Traditional Christmas Schedule in Rome

At Santa Maria della Pace (Via della Pace, near Piazza Navona)

Christmas Midnight Mass
In the Roman Rite ("Tridentine")
Celebrated by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter
Polyphonic Choir FESTINA LENTE (Directed by Michele Gasbarro)
Mass for eight voices (Victoria)

At San Gregorio dei Muratori

From December 21, 2006, to January 7, 2007, there will be no 0700 (a.m.) Mass at S. Gregorio. There will be no 1830 Mass on December 24 or 25, 2006.

There will be exposition of the Blessed Sacrament on December 31, 2006 (Evening), followed by Mass at midnight and Te Deum.

On January 1 and 6 (Epiphany) there will be 0900, (Solemn) 1030 (a.m.), and 1830 Masses.
Posted on request. More information: 06-68192286 (or here; or in Italian).

Aperiatur Terra

Ego Dominus, et non est alter; formans lucem, et creans tenebras; faciens pacem, et creans malum: ego Dominus faciens omnia hæc. Rorate, cæli, desuper, et nubes pluant iustum: aperiatur terra, et germinet Salvatorem: et iustitia oriatur simul: ego Dominus creavi eum.(From the fourth Lesson for the Ember Saturday in Advent, Isaias xi, 6-8: "I am the Lord, and there is none else: I form the light, and create darkness, I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord that do all these things. Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the just: let the earth be opened, and bud forth a savior: and let justice spring up together: I the Lord have created him.")

...Mary is in very truth full of the riches of a good life. Of this plenitude we can truly say: "The earth is the Lord's." By the earth is signified Mary, of whom we read in Isaias: "Let the earth be opened, and bud forth a savior!"

What more lowly than the earth? What more useful? We all …

Ecce Dominus veniet

Hæc dicit Dominus Deus: Egredietur virga de radice Iesse, et flos de radice ejus ascendet. Et requiescet super eum spiritus Domini: spiritus sapientiæ et intellectus, spiritus consilii et fortitudinis, spiritus scientiæ et pietatis: et replebit eum spiritus timoris Domini.(From the Propers for the Ember Friday in Advent, Isaias xi, 1-3: " Thus saith the Lord God: And there shall come forth a rod out of the root of Jesse, and a flower shall rise up out of his root. And the spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him: the spirit of wisdom, and of understanding, the spirit of counsel, and of fortitude, the spirit of knowledge, and of godliness. And he shall be filled with the spirit of the fear of the Lord.")

Orthodoxos —Then let us pass on to another prophetic testimony and let us hear the same prophet saying, "There shall come forth a rod out of the root of Jesse, and a flower shall rise up out of his root."

Eranistes —I think this prophecy was delivered about Zerubbabel.


Fellay in Argentina: "already signed"

From the lecture given by Bishop Bernard Fellay, Superior-General of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (FSSPX/SSPX) in Martínez, in the Province of Buenos Aires, on December 16, 2006 (WAV file in the website of the South American District of the FSSPX).

We present the main snippet below, as we gather some more information. The Bishop's somewhat broken Spanish (the main words should read, "el documento ya ESTÁ firmado") is kept as faithfully as possible in the following translation:

"What is interesting is that Cardinal Ricard told the Assembly of French Bishops, that was in early November, that 'the motu proprio is not signed', and that now is the time to make notes, to define what is thought, what should be corrected.

"[01:38:30]Well, the document is already signed [emphatic] and the Cardinal who spoke to the French Bishops knows it. There are curious things. And, also, after the signing, the matter is once again discussed, on December 12. That is w…

A fructibus eorum cognoscetis eos

Exactly one year ago, the reigning Roman Pontiff made the most important (though not his most famous, after the "Regensburg affair"...) speech in his pontificate: his Christmas address to the Roman Curia.
We are quite glad that this blog was the very first English-language medium to report the speech, minutes after it was pronounced, an address which was at the time mostly ignored by the mainstream Catholic media for weeks. "Progressive" Catholic journalists and bloggers would ignore it for almost one month... Our first series of articles was dedicated to it, which we called the "Epoch-making Speech", a definition which we uphold.

Its main thrust: to establish the basis for a "hermeneutics of continuity", that is, of continuity between the bimillenial Tradition of the Church before 1962 and the complex content of the Vatican II documents themselves and their confusing aftermath. We still believe that a good foundation was laid with that speech, …

Fellay: "I am sure of a 'happy ending'"

From an interview with the Superior-General of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (FSSPX/SSPX), Bishop Bernard Fellay, published on December 11 by the French regional daily Nice-Matin (via Le Forum Catholique). Due to copyright limitations, the following relevant excerpts are translated:

Nice-Matin: Isn't this division among Catholics an offense against the love of Christ?

-Mgr Fellay: It is true, love is the authentic sign of the Church. But Saint Paul also says, "Opportet haereses esse," there shall always be divisions and oppositions. The Church has as its aim saving souls, and for that it should remove them from a situation of war against God, related to Original Sin.


What do you ask for?

-For that which is the principle: that the ancient Mass be truly allowed. For a practical application [of the principle]: that all act in good faith. That we do not see, beforehand, the arrival of the ancient rite as a problem.

It is said you are on the verge of asking, in writin…

Traditionalists of the world, unite! - Follow-up

Il Foglio published today ("Latinismi 2") the first small list of signatories of the Manifesto in favor of the Traditional Rites of the Latin Church, and I see several of our dearest readers among them. It is good to see such widespread international support for the Mass.

The paper also publishes, in a different column ("Latinismi 1") the information on the 1982 Ratzinger meeting (published last week by Le Figaro), and concludes: "The next weeks will be decisive to ascertain if this greater determination [of Benedict XVI, as compared to John Paul II] will be sufficient to [ensure] the publication of the expected motu proprio, ...".

"First list":

Camillo Langone; Thomas Scaramastra, Greensboro, Usa; Paola Manghi, Desenzano; Bart Crowell, Lakeland, Tennessee Usa; Pamela Dieter, Usa; Brad Nygaard, Madison, Wisconsin Usa; Javier Echanove, Madrid, Spagna; Daniela Borroni; Paul Waddington, Yorkshire England; Alessandro Madruzza, Perugia; Anna Caffi Fore…

The enemies

Ongoing series

Why is Modernism such a grave heresy, why has its influence been so profound? There are objective motives for that: it is the "synthesis of all heresies". Yet, its imprint in the history of the Church in the 20th century (and also in the present century...) is mostly related to the Modernists themselves and to their shameless use of the traditional ecclesiastical structures and offices to further their views and widen the number of their followers. As we prepare for the Centennial Year of the great Encyclical, let us recall the warnings of Pope Saint Pius:

... the partisans of error are to be sought not only among the Church's open enemies; they lie hid, a thing to be deeply deplored and feared, in her very bosom and heart, and are the more mischievous, the less conspicuously they appear.

We allude, Venerable Brethren, to many who belong to the Catholic laity, nay, and this is far more lamentable, to the ranks of the priesthood itself, who, feigning a love fo…

Expressio Veritatis

Benedixisti, Domine, terram tuam: avertisti captivitatem Iacob: remisisti iniquitatem plebis tuæ.(Offertory for the Third Sunday of Advent, Psalm lxxxiv, 2-3: "Lord, thou hast blessed thy land: thou hast turned away the captivity of Jacob: thou hast forgiven the iniquity of thy people."; cf. Introit for the same Sunday.)

The Prophet sings to Him of the future, and uses words as it were of past time: he speaks of things future as if already done, because with God that which is future has already taken place: "Lord, You have been favourable unto Thy land" (ver. 1); as if He had already done so; "You have turned away the captivity of Jacob"; His ancient people of Jacob, the people of Israel, born of Abraham's seed, in the promise to become one day the heir of God.

That was indeed a real people, to whom the Old Testament was given; but in the Old Testament the New was figured: that was the figure, this the truth expressed [hæc expressio veritatis]. In that …

Traditionalists of the world, unite!

In defense of Christian Civilization

If you wish to join the thousands who want to lend their support to the Socci Manifesto (click), write to:

Subject: Appello di Antonio Socci

“Esprimiamo il nostro plauso per la decisione di Benedetto XVI di cancellare la proibizione dell’antica messa in latino secondo il messale di san Pio V, grande patrimonio della nostra cultura da salvare e riscoprire”. [English: "We express our praise for the decision of Benedict XVI to cancel the prohibition of the ancient Mass in Latin according to the Missal of Saint Pius V, a great legacy of our culture, which must be saved and rediscovered."]

Sign: Name, Profession (optional), City (optional) and Country of Residence

Italian intellectuals sign "Tridentine Manifesto"

The Italian daily Il Foglio publishes today a manifesto signed by great Italian intellectuals, including Antonio Socci and Franco Zeffirelli (and also René Girard, of the Académie Française, who published with other French intellectuals a manifesto published today at Le Figaro), in defense of the liberation of the Traditional Roman Mass, the Missa Piana, and remembering the Petition of 1966 and the great British Petition of 1971, of venerable memory.

Our English version of the "Socci Manifesto" (from the Italian original):

I wish to launch an appeal to the world of culture.

In support of a decision of Benedict XVI.

The announcement was given by Cardinal Arturo Medina Estevez, a member of the Ecclesia Dei commission which met to discuss the liberalization of the Latin Mass. The prelate said, "The publication of the Motu Proprio by the Pope which will liberalize the celebration of the Latin Mass according to the Missal of Saint Pius V is close." It is an extraordinarily …

French intellectuals sign a "Tridentine Manifesto"

This morning, Le Figaro brings an open letter, signed by dozens of some the most influential French intellectuals, in support of the Holy Father's efforts to free the Traditional Mass.

Quoting Sacrosanctum Concilium, the letter reminds the French public opinion that Vatican II stated that "holy Mother Church holds all lawfully acknowledged rites to be of equal right and dignity; that she wishes to preserve them in the future and to foster them in every way."

The letter goes on to quote Cardinal Ratzinger, other Vatican II documents, and always making a vigorous and effective defense of the Mass. Just Beautiful.


Whole text of the Manifesto

A Manifesto in favor of the Tridentine Mass
Published: December 16, 2006 [Le Figaro]

René Girard, of the French Academy; Michel Déon, of the French Academy; Bertrand Collomb, of the Institute of France; Jean Piat, actor; Claude Rich, actor; Jean-Laurent Cochet, actor and producer; François Ceyrac, former president of the C…

Explaining the "Traditionalist Question" in France and in the world
Countering the wave of misinformation

Last November, our favorite guest, Professor Luc Perrin, a Church Historian in the University of Strasbourg II-Marc Bloch, was interviewed by the popular French website of the "Liberté Politique" political journal, published by the Fondation de Service Politique. A translation of the interview is provided below. We then added a few of our own follow-up questions, which professor Perrin was kind enough to answer.


LIBERTE POLITIQUE – The announcement of a project to free the Tridentine rite has sown trouble in the French Church. Some bishops feel they must support those groups of priests who are worried by the questioning of Vatican II. The perspective of the existence of two rites in the Latin Church is strongly challenged: bi-ritualism would be contrary to the very principle of communion. It is surprising for such strong arguments to escape the theologian Joseph Ratzinger. Where then does the difficulty come from?

LUC PERRIN – There is a form of ignorance t…