Sunday, August 30, 2009


my first granddaughter, baptized today, this is what life is all about

The Egyptian

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Small town, Small farm America

A local young farmer, Brad , 22 , Skip to his friends, was killed in a farm accident at home when a forklift removing a disabled skid loader off a truck tipped and pinned him, he was a classmate of my eldest daughter . His father Paul lost his wife to cancer 4 years ago and just 3 weeks ago remarried another farm widow of 8 years, the poor man is despondent, the whole family is in my prayers. After the funeral mass at Precious Blood Catholic Church, (held there because his home church could not hold the crowd), the procession to the cemetery at St Sebastian Parish was greeted by a show of support by the local young farmers association, they have been doing this every time one of their own is claimed by an accident, I drove through shortly before Mass left out, and took these pictures. The combine has his football jersey in the window. I cried my eyes out as I left. Only in small town, small farm America

The Egyptian


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Legend in his own mind

I believe it says it all, don't you, my apologies to Norman Rockwell

The Egyptian

Friday, August 21, 2009

TLM ‘Horizontal Proof’

(giggle-snort) dang, spilled coffee on my key board again, too funny but so true

The Egyptian

The Death of ‘Me-Church’ by Steve Skojec

This past Sunday, as I attempted to get my wriggling, squeaking, squirming children settled in our pew for what usually amounts to a liturgical rodeo — see if you can keep them on their best behavior for eight seconds without getting thrown out of the church — I noticed the arrival of two women in their sixties who clearly looked like they did not belong. Processing up the aisle in search of a seat, they were dressed very casually, with the short-cropped, boyish, almost intentionally unattractive hairstyles that seem to be de rigeur for the aging members of America’s post-feminism movement. They stood out in a sea of suits, ties, dresses, and chapel veils.

Far be it from me to judge based solely on appearances, of course: I may be a Trad, but when I know I’m going to be wrestling with toddlers for the duration of an hour-and-a-quarter-long Mass in the heat of the summer, I’m the first to arrive in a polo shirt instead of an oxford. Even so, sometimes it’s just true: “By their fashions you will know them.”

This daring duo of anti-patriarchalism might have been guests in from out of town and staying in the hotel across the street, unaware that the 9 a.m. Mass at this particular parish is, in fact, a throwback to the glory days of Catholicism, before the option existed to replace all the masculine pronouns for God in the liturgy with gender-inclusive ones. Might have been, I say, but for the fact that they gave themselves away with their refusal to kneel during such unimportant moments of the Mass as, say, the consecration. They stood like Amazon warrior priestesses at attention, forming a phalanx to defend the rear guard of fruit-loopy Catholicism’s last hoorah.

As I looked at them (they were partially blocking my view of the altar, so I couldn’t help it), I felt not my usual twinge of irritation at the guardians of “Me-Church,” but instead a kind of amused pity. They couldn’t perform their non-conformist schtick, mad-libbing their way through responses that, in Latin, they couldn’t understand. Hindered by the liturgical language barrier and unfamiliar with the posture of the priest, they were also unable to determine when to hold hands inappropriately during the “Our Father” and were ritually deprived of the showy displays of human affection afforded them by the Sign of Peace.

In other words, the liturgical experience in which they found themselves was horizontal-proof. It resists by its very essence all efforts to make it conform to Man. Instead, within its confines, man (or womyn, if you prefer) must conform to God.

As I watched the priest, his attention turned to the altar and, incidentally, away from their awkward and ineffectual protest, I felt certain that I was at last seeing the death of an ideology that had long outlived its time. The parish was full — not just with gray-haired hangers-on, but with young families teeming with small children, all of whom demonstrated a deep fondness for tradition, ritual, and respectful worship. The visitors’ triumphalistic “We Are Church” mentality was made irrelevant by a more humble, less self-conscious Catholicism. The people around them were far less concerned with having the attention focused on them, and far more concerned with keeping children quiet and well-behaved, and making it through the confession line before Communion time.

This reality is not restricted to the extraordinary form of the Mass, though it finds much substance there. As the Church turns with a view to the past, not just the future, and admits more of its once-abandoned orthodoxy back into its liturgies, the revolutionaries who sought to remake Catholicism are growing old and fading away. The Church is timeless and seems now, at last, to be maturing out of its bi-millennial identity crisis. It is a Catholicism that remembers what it was and where it is going — to Our Father’s house — where the choirs of angels sing not their own praises but His, forever and ever.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

from the New York Times, letter to the editors

first paragraph is a good comparison, and last two help explain, forgot how I received this but to good to delete.

The Egyptian

As far as the Church is concerned, I think that there was a period of collective drunkenness, starting with the excesses of good wine with V II itself and continuing with the ocean of vodka of “the spirit of V II”. The top (the Vatican) has sobered down relatively fast and in 1978 sobriety was firmly in charge within the conclave, but there was no courage to eradicate bad habits among the generation of guitar-strumming alcoholics who in the meantime had spread all over Catholicism, starting from the bishops.
What I think is happening is that from above (the Vatican) Chianti Classico is slowly being introduced again, but that it will never establish itself as a habit among those who have spent a life amidst bloody marys and alcopops.
Whilst I think that a bigger effort should be done to kick out some of the worst offenders (the South of England being a point in case), I do understand that there is no great desire at the top to start fights when, as a famous drug addict once said, “time is on our side”.
What the NYT readers might be helped to understand by this article is that as JP II was an improvement on Paul VI and BXVI is a big improvement over JP II, Benedict’s successor will be an improvement on him and will feel free to continue his work of sobering down the trendy masses with greater energy, and his successor more than him. This is what the future will bring and they’ll better get accustomed to the idea now.
I see far brighter days ahead, and the Holy Ghost silently and slowly, but steadily working on the necessary repairs of Peter’s Barque: vocations clearly come from the conservative side and the hippies are utterly despised among the younger faithful, whilst the Anglicans disintegrate worldwide and show once again the destiny of every man made “church”.
In an age of “freedoms”, more and more people discover that what they want is guidance; the Catholic church has never been so well regarded even in the protestant world and nowadays a Protestant President of the United States dares to be present at a Pope’s funeral, his brother a Catholic convert! In time, the Catholic Church will be seen by more and more people as the only alternative, whilst many Protestants drown in an ocean of political correctness making them less and less recognisable as Christians.
If you ask me, the future belongs to conservative Protestants and Catholics. All the others will end like the dinosaurs.

Verrrrrwwy Busy

No Postings for a while I know, with kids in 4-H and county fairs just plain been busy, finally some to post today.


The Egyptian

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Return to Tradition or the Hippies are pushing up Daisies

New Nuns and Priests Seen Opting for Tradition

A new study of Roman Catholic nuns and priests in the United States shows that an aging, predominantly white generation is being succeeded by a smaller group of more racially and ethnically diverse recruits who are attracted to the religious orders that practice traditional prayer rituals and wear habits.

The study found that the graying of American nuns and priests was even more pronounced than many Catholics had realized. Ninety-one percent of nuns and 75 percent of priests are 60 or older, and most of the rest are at least 50.

They are the generation defined by the Second Vatican Council, of the 1960s, which modernized the church and many of its religious orders. Many nuns gave up their habits, moved out of convents, earned higher educational degrees and went to work in the professions and in community service. The study confirms what has long been suspected: that these more modern religious orders are attracting the fewest new members.

The study was already well under way when the Vatican announced this year that it was conducting two investigations of American nuns. One, taking up many of the same questions as the new report, is an “apostolic visitation” of all women’s religious orders in the United States. The other is a doctrinal investigation of the umbrella group that represents a majority of American nuns, the Leadership Conference of Women Religious.

The new study, being released on Tuesday, was conducted by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University, for the National Religious Vocation Conference, which is looking for ways for the church to attract and retain new nuns and priests. It was financed by an anonymous donor.

“We’ve heard anecdotally that the youngest people coming to religious life are distinctive, and they really are,” said Sister Mary Bendyna, executive director of the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate. “They’re more attracted to a traditional style of religious life, where there is community living, common prayer, having Mass together, praying the Liturgy of the Hours together. They are much more likely to say fidelity to the church is important to them. And they really are looking for communities where members wear habits.”

Of the new priests and nuns who recently joined religious orders, two-thirds chose orders that wear a habit all the time or regularly during prayer or ministry, the study found.

The study also showed that whites account for 94 percent of current nuns and priests but only 58 percent of those in the process of joining orders.

Asians and Pacific Islanders are disproportionately represented among the newcomers, accounting for 14 percent, far above their 3 percent share of the Catholic population in the United States, Sister Bendyna said.

Hispanics are 21 percent of the newcomers, compared with only 3 percent of the current priests and nuns.

Of women who recently entered religious orders, the average age is 32; for men, it is 30. But retaining new recruits is a challenge. About half of those who have entered religious orders since 1990 have not stayed, and almost all who left did so before making their final vows.

“People come to religious life because they feel they’re being called,” said Brother Paul Bednarczyk, executive director of the National Religious Vocation Conference, adding that the purpose of the church’s training process “is to discern that call before a commitment is made.” So “it’s not surprising,” he said, “that you would have people that would leave.”

Monday, August 10, 2009

Funnies, or Not

Kind a sad but really when available by appointment only, what is next? I don't know how many times I would have liked to go to confession but was not about to call for an appointment, at both traditional parishes I have attended, the priest heard confession both before and after mass and the lines were long, I believe if that were the case even if only once or twice a month the results might surprise some priests especially if combined with some real good sermons to point out sin instead of trying to make us feel good

The Egyptian

Saturday, August 8, 2009

What a Creep

Fr Z does it best,
this "man" is creepy

The Egyptian

Obama advisor John Holdren: newborns are not fully human

CATEGORY: SESSIUNCULA — Fr. John Zuhlsdorf @ 11:11 am

Who is in the White House? Who are President Obama’s choice advisers?

This from LifeSite with my emphases and comments.

Obama Science Advisor John Holdren Also Said Newborn Baby Not Fully Human

by Steven Ertelt Editor
July 29, 2009

Washington, DC (— John Holdren, the Science Czar chosen by pro-abortion President Barack Obama, has already come under criticism for backing population control and forced abortions. [Get that? Forced abortions.] Now, new information is appearing showing Holdren didn’t believe that newborn infants are fully human.

Holdren co-wrote a 1973 book ,“Human Ecology: Problems and Solutions," with infamous population control advocate Paul Ehrlich in which his view supporting forced abortion appears.

Holdren’s office later denied he held those views. [But… scriptum manet is, I think, the principle here. Mr. Holdren could publicly clarify his views, of course. I think a microphone could be found for him and people might pay attention.]

In another manuscript, Holdren also says a newborn child “will ultimately develop into a human being” if properly fed and socialized. [So, for Holdren, how a person thinks and acts determines the level of "human"?]

“The fetus, given the opportunity to develop properly before birth, and given the essential early socializing experiences and sufficient nourishing food [ummm… does this mean that the under-nourished are not fully human? Are the over nourished, then, super-human? Or do they lose humaness due to lack of what some expert defines as "ideal weight"?] during the crucial early years after birth, will ultimately develop into a human being,” Holdren wrote.

Obama chose Holdren to become the director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

According to a report in CNS News, the controversial passage is found on page 235 in the 1973 book in chapter 8, titled “Population Limitation.” The news service indicates the book, written before the Roe v. Wade decision, argued in favor of legalized abortion.

"To a biologist the question of when life begins for a human child is almost meaningless," Holdren argues. [What a monstrous position.] "To most biologists, an embryo (unborn child during the first two or three months of development) or a fetus is no more a complete human being than a blueprint is a building."

Holdren continues, "The fetus, given the opportunity to develop properly before birth, and given the essential early socializing experiences and sufficient nourishing food during the crucial early years after birth, will ultimately develop into a human being. Where any of these essential elements is lacking, the resultant individual will be deficient in some respect.”

Holdren also notes that legal scholars don’t view unborn children as human under the U.S. Constitution until “it is born.

“From this point of view, a fetus is only a potential human being" with potential italicized in Holdren’s book. “Historically, [So… he is a kind of originalist… what an ironic twist…] the law has dated most rights and privileges from the moment of birth, and legal scholars generally agree that a fetus is not a ‘person’ within the meaning of the United States Constitution until it is born and living independent of its mother’s body.”

CNS news indicates Holdren argues for abortion, saying it spares “unwanted children” from “undesirable consequences.” [Such as being born.]


I wonder if he presently holds these views.

People can, after all, eventually grow up and develop into a human being.

Just remember… President Obama is committed to reducing the number of abortions. Keep saying that to yourself over and over again.

beautiful evening

Posting some poor pictures from my cell phone at the Fatima Evening at the Spiritual Center of Maria Stein last night. First mass then the Rosary, then a procession with the Virgin in the lead through the woods just the glow of the candles was inspiring, especially on the winding path through the woods. Also got to meet fellow blogger Fr. Fox ( Bonfire of the Vanities ), nice to meet you Father and don't worry the Latin will come, we up here are waiting.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

follow the Popes orders, PLEASE

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Vatican tells bishops to implement Motu Proprio

Guido Pozzo, the new secretary of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei "

The Pope asks bishops throughout the world to follow his instructions about the so-called old rite of the Mass. "The local bishop must adhere to the directives "which concern the extraordinary rite of the Mass, writes the new secretary of the Pontifical Commission "Ecclesia Dei", Guido Pozzo, in a letter that the Internet portal "" has published. "If in a diocese, there are a significant number of believers who wish for the older rite, they need no special permission from local bishop" writes Pozzo, according to the website. The bishop should instead "examine" how this desire is to be "effectively implemented". He should not specify the number of believers who are asking for the rite which are to be "significant", which depends very much on "local circumstances"

proper norm for receiving Communion

see my rant on this subject
the Egyptian

By Fr LW Gonzales On August 2nd, 2009

Pope Benedict to Catholics: Kneel and Receive on the Tongue Only

Pope Benedict XVI does not want the faithful receiving Communion in their hand nor does he want them standing to receive Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. According to Vatican liturgist, Monsignor Guido Marini, the pope is trying to set the stage for the whole church as to the proper norm for receiving Communion for which reason communicants at his papal Masses are now asked to kneel and receive on the tongue.

The Holy Father’s reasoning is simple: “We Christians kneel before the Blessed Sacrament because, therein, we know and believe to be the presence of the One True God.” (May 22, 2008)

According to the pope the entire Church should kneel in adoration before God in the Eucharist. “Kneeling in adoration before the Eucharist is the most valid and radical remedy against the idolatries of yesterday and today” (May 22, 2008)

The pope’s action is in accord with the Church’s 2000 year tradition and is being done in order to foster a renewed love and respect for the Eucharist which presently is being mocked and treated with contempt. The various trends and innovations of our time (guitar liturgy, altar girls, lay ministers, Communion in the hand) have worked together to destroy our regard for the Eucharist, thus advancing the spiritual death of the church. After all, the Eucharist is the very life and heartbeat of the Mystical Body around which the entire Church must revolve.

Kneeling also coincides with the Church’s centuries old ordinance that only the consecrated hands of a priest touch the Body of Christ in Holy Communion. “To priests alone has been given power to consecrate and administer to the faithful, the Holy Eucharist.” (Council of Trent) This teaching is beautifully expressed by St. Thomas Aquinas in his Summa Theologica: “Because out of reverence towards this sacrament, nothing touches it, but what is consecrated; hence the corporal and the chalice are consecrated, and likewise the priest’s hands, for touching this sacrament.”

It is for reason that Pope Paul VI in his May 1969 pastoral letter to the world’s bishops reaffirmed the Church’s teaching on the reception of Communion, stating that: “This method on the tongue must be retained.” (Memoriale Domini) This came in response to the bishops of Holland who started Communion in the hand in defiance of the centuries old decree from the Council of Rouen (650 A.D.) where this practice was condemned as sacrilegious. “Do not put the Eucharist in the hands of any layperson, but only in their mouths.” To date this prohibition has never been overturned legally.

Today Communion in the hand is carried on illegally and has become a major tool of the enemy to destroy the Faith throughout the world. For this practice serves no other purpose than to warp our conception of Jesus Christ and nourish a contempt for the sacred mysteries. It’s no wonder St. Basil referred to Communion in the hand as “a grave fault.”

That is to say, Communion in the hand is not tied with Catholic tradition. This practice was first introduced to the Church by the heretical Arians of the 4th century as a means of expressing their belief that Christ was not divine. Unfortunately, it has served to express the same in our time and has been at the very heart of the present heresy and desecration that is rampant throughout the universal Church. If we have ‘abuse’ problems today it is because we’re abusing the Sacrament - it’s backfiring on us!

Thanks to Communion in the hand, members of satanic cults are now given easy access to come into the Church and take the Host so that they bring it back to their covens where it is abused and brutalized in the ritualistic Black Mass to Satan. They crush the Host under their shoes as a mockery to the living God, and we assist it with our casual practice? Amongst themselves the satanists declare that Communion in the hand is the greatest thing that ever happened to them, and we do nothing to stop it?

Hence, the Holy Father is doing his part to try to purge the Church of abuse and we as members of Christ are called upon to assist him. For your encouragement we include the following quotation from Cardinal Llovera, the new prefect for the Vatican’s Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments speaking to Life Site News on July 22, 2009: “It is the mission of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Sacraments to work to promote Pope Benedict’s emphasis on the traditional practices of liturgy, such as reception of Communion on the tongue while kneeling.”

Also worth considering is the recent decree from Cardinal Caffarra, the Archbishop of Bologna Italy, forbidding the practice of Communion in the hand: “Many cases of profanation of the Eucharist have occurred, profiting by the possibility to receive the consecrated Bread on one’s palm of the hand… Considering the frequency in which cases of irreverent behavior in the act of receiving the Eucharist have been reported, we dispose that starting from today in the Metropolitan Church of St. Peter, in the Basilica of St. Petronius and in the Shrine of the Holy Virgin of St. Luke in Bologna the faithful are to receive the consecrated Bread only from the hands of the Minister directly on the tongue.” (from his decree on the reception of the Eucharist, issued April 27, 2009)

Technically all bishops and clergy are bound to follow the Holy Father’s directive on this issue, but in the meantime the faithful are not obliged to wait for the approval of their bishop in order to kneel for God. The directives of the Holy Father are not subject to the veto or scrutiny of the bishops and therefore all pastors and laity have a right and duty to put these directives into practice for the edification of their communities. - Our Lady’s Workers of Southern California | David Martin

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

great commentary by Fr Martin Fox

From Bonfire of the Vanities

Monday, August 03, 2009
St. Catherine of Siena, Great Falls Virginia
(I've been remiss in telling you about the sacred places I've visited on my vacation; I will, I hope, tell you about my visit to the shrine of St. John Newmann in Philadelphia before long; but here follows my experience of Sunday Mass in Northern Virginia.)

On the Lord's Day, I had the joy of concelebrating the Mass with Father Alexander Drummond, pastor of St. Catherine Parish in Great Falls, Virginia. I had heard good things, and also a friend of mine, who is not Catholic, asked about attending Mass with me, and then we'd visit afterward; I wanted him to have a good experience of the Holy Sacrifice.

Everything was praiseworthy, and I told Father Drummond I was envious of many of the things he had accomplished. His servers were very well trained and performed beautifully. He had so many for the first Sunday in August--he said, "they flock to this Mass." He had one very young fellow, Thomas, who was learning the ropes; apparently, Father has new fellows just show up, put on a cassock and surplice, and be guided by the older, more experienced servers--although he also has classes.

This suburban parish of 4,000 families has four Masses a weekend; I took part in the 10 am Mass, which was all in Latin, except for the readings, prayers of the faithful, and of course the homily. Everything else was in Latin, from the opening Sign of the Cross to the final "Ite, Missa Est." We did pray the prayer to St. Michael in English, but the closing hymn was the Salve Regina.

Father sang a few of the prayers of the Mass, but he was using the same, Missa in Cantu book I have, that provides all the prayers of the Mass, in Latin, set to chant; I use it at the 8 am Mass every first Wednesday of the Month at St. Mary, and his copy was well-thumbed; so I'm assuming he often chants the prayers. Those he chanted, he did so impeccably.

This Mass featured the assigned music for the opening, offertory and communion: it is very little known or understood that when we use hymns at this point--as the vast majority of Catholic parishes do--we are consistently avoiding what the Second Vatican Council, and the norms for the Mass, actually call for, which is Scripture-based texts set to chant. They can be sung in the original Latin, to Gregorian tones; or they can be chanted in English; at Masses with no music, you will hear the antiphon recited from time to time--this is the bare minimum.

At this Mass, they were sung by a cantor in Latin, in Gregorian chant--and that was done beautifully. No doubt, some would react negatively: they couldn't themselves sing along (and in fact almost everyone listened); and they wouldn't immediately recognize the words. But a program was handed out that provided both the Latin text and an English translation. Of course, listening is participation; and it would be a terrible mistake to reduce music merely to its words; music, rather, marries a meaningful text to a well-chosen set of notes, something I lack the talent to do, but others possess: and the combination is the true, good and beautiful all in one. So the fact that folks did not sing it does not mean they weren't participating; sometimes something is so beautiful, you simply listen.

Because, in fact, people did sing the other prayers of the Mass, in Latin, rather well: the Gloria and the Credo in particular. There is something deeply meaningful to me about praying the Creed in it's original words: the Councils of Nicea and Constantinople, from which we derive this Creed, published this infallible statement of faith in Latin and Greek, and we recite it in the very same words (with the addition of the filioque of course, but let us not tarry on that point).

Another feature of the Mass was the use of ad orientem--that is, while at the altar for the liturgy of the Eucharist and the communion rite, the celebrant faced the same way as the people, and thus all faced the Lord together; some will refer to this as the priest "with his back to the people." Of course, I have no idea what the folks of the parish thought about it, and no doubt those who dislike it attend the other Masses where this is not done. But those present seemed cheerful and spiritually nourished as they left Mass. There were a lot of children, including young children, at the Mass; while there was a hermetically sealed "cry room," there were plenty of young ones outside of it, and I did not notice any significant increase in vocal meltdowns at this allegedly less-engaging Mass.

At this point, you may be confused--you may say, "oh, you mean you concelebrated the older form of the Mass, from before the Council." No, this is the Mass as reformed after the Council, according to all the proper norms and rubrics, as provided for the very same sacramentary, or book of Mass prayers, used at every Roman-Rite Catholic parish in the world.

"But wait, Father, how can that be? You said it was in Latin, and the priest was facing the same way as the people--wasn't all that done away with by the Council?"

While that is what a lot of people believe, and were told, the answer is no; on the contrary, many are shocked to discover that, far from abolishing these things, the Council presupposed both that Latin would continue to be used, to some degree, and the Council said not a single word about the priest moving to the other side of the altar--i.e., the Council never called for that latter change. And even the post-Counciliar implementation of the new Mass did not mandate the priest stand behind the altar and face the people. Like the use of the vernacular, it was allowed as an option, an option almost universally implemented, to the point some now insist it is mandatory. But not so.

My friend, over breakfast, said he found it beautiful and spiritually refreshing: "it was what I needed today." But he asked what many ask: "why is Latin important?"

I gave him the following reasons:

1) It connects us, in an experiential way, to our formative roots. The liturgy is not a re-creation of the Last Supper; but an experience, in mystery (i.e., via sacramental reality), of all the actions of Christ that save us: his life, death, resurrection and ascension into heaven. The Mass is all this rolled into one, and more. That's why we don't do it in Aramaic or Greek, but we do it in Latin, because the Roman form of the sacred liturgy was formed in Latin--that is the Mass's original language, and remains so this this very minute.

2) Keeping Latin just a little alive in our experience and consciousness opens us up to a vast treasury of our patrimony which orginated in Latin. Of course, the written word can be translated, but poetry and music, not so well. When was the last time someone at a wedding or funeral asked for the Ave Maria to be sung--but in English? Why do they always want it sung in Latin? Because it's beautiful; and translating it undoes the beauty of the singular expression. This is why so much of our music hasn't been translated from the Latin; it has simply been left behind.

3) There is a value to praying a kind of sacred language, based on something observable in the human mind. Alongside all the advantages of having the Mass and other sacramental rituals in our own language, there is a downside--of approaching the liturgy, and the mystery it makes present, primarily with our intellectual function. When we hear words we understand, our intellect is engaged, and we "digest" the words and the ideas they convey. This is good of course; but the danger is in thinking the mysteries made present in the Mass should be approached principally in this fashion. In fact, we do well to approach these mysteries on various levels, the level of intellectual understanding being only one level.

In short, the danger is to flatten and make mundane the mystery. Someone says, "I don't like praying words I don't understand." But who can say s/he understands what it means to call God "holy"? We are kidding ourselves if we understand the meaning of calling him "holy" better than we understand calling him "sanctus."

My point being that using Latin--even with a translation handy--provides a kind of circuit-breaker that enables us to separate the experience of mystery from the apprehension of the mystery with our intellects; so that we don't just make the distinction in an abstract way, but we experience it. Learning, after all, isn't just a matter of being told something, or getting it abstractly, but by doing: you don't learn to drive merely by having the concepts and methods explained to you; you have to get behind the wheel.

It truly saddens me that there is not more openness to this. I wish more people could experience the liturgy as I did on Sunday, as I have many times before elsewhere. The very fact that a more familiar path is closed--the path of hearing and responding in ones own language--is closed, opens up new avenues unconsidered; just as you find if, while awake, you silence yourself and your surroundings, and close your eyes, you will, after a few minutes, find you are hearing things you seemingly didn't hear a few minutes before; or when you look up into the night sky, with all the artificial light turned off: you see things you never knew were there. I am convinced that many people would have similarly surprising discoveries in the liturgy where it is celebrated to a significant degree in Latin, and with more silence and dignity, less constant pressure for everyone to be saying something and moving about; but the resistance is constant, and the steps are small.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Ben Stein, I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late ! !

This is ecumenicalism that is real and from the heart, not some dressed up crap put on by "Religious Leaders for show" Ben has always been a class act

The Egyptian

Remarks from CBS Sunday Morning - Ben Stein
I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late ! !

The following was written by Ben Stein and recited by him on CBS Sunday
Morning Commentary.

My confession:

I am a Jew, and every single one of my ancestors was Jewish. And it does
not bother me even a little bit when people
call those beautiful lit up, bejeweled trees, Christmas trees. I don't
feel threatened... I don't feel discriminated
against.. That's what they are, Christmas trees.

It doesn't bother me a bit when people say, 'Merry Christmas' to me. I
don't think they are slighting me or getting
ready to put me in a ghetto. In fact, I kind of like it.

It shows that we are all brothers and sisters celebrating this happy time
of year. It doesn't bother me at all that
there is a manger scene on display at a key intersection near my beach
house in Malibu . If people want a creche,
it's just as fine with me as is the Menorah a few hundred yards away.

I don't like getting pushed around for being a Jew, and I don't think
Christians like getting pushed around for being
Christians. I think people who believe in God are sick and tired of
getting pushed around, period. I have no idea
where the concept came from, that America is an explicitly atheist country.
I can't find it in the Constitution and I
don't like it being shoved down my throat.

Or maybe I can put it another way: where did the idea come from that we
should worship celebrities and we aren't
allowed to worship God as we understand Him? I guess that's a sign that
I'm getting old, too. But there are a lot of
us who are wondering where these celebrities came from and where the
America we knew went to.

In light of the many jokes we send to one another for a laugh, this is a
little different: This is not intended to be
a joke; it's not funny, it's intended to get you thinking.

Billy Graham's daughter was interviewed on the Early Show and Jane Clayson
asked her 'How could God let something like
this happen?' (regarding Hurricane Katrina). Anne Graham gave an extremely
profound and insightful response. She
said, 'I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for
years we've been telling God to get out of
our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And
being the gentleman He is, I believe He
has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and
His protection if we demand He leave us

In light of recent events... terrorists attack, school shootings, etc.. I
think it started when Madeleine Murray
O'Hare (she was murdered, her body found a few years ago) complained she
didn't want prayer in our schools, and we
said OK. Then someone said you better not read the Bible in school. The
Bible says thou shalt not kill; thou shalt
not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself... And we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn't spank our children when they
misbehave, because their little personalities
would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem (Dr. Spock's son
committed suicide). We said an expert should
know what he's talking about. And we said okay..

Now we're asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they
don't know right from wrong, and why it
doesn't bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out.
I think it has a great deal to do with 'WE

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the
world's going to hell. Funny how we believe
what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says. Funny how you
can send 'jokes' through e-mail and they
spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the
Lord, people think twice about sharing. Funny
how lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene articles pass freely through
cyberspace, but public discussion of God is
suppressed in the school and workplace.

Are you laughing yet?

Funny how when you forward this message, you will not send it to many on
your address list because you're not sure
what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it...

Funny how we can be more worried about what other people think of us than
what God thinks of us.

Pass it on if you think it has merit.

If not, then just discard it... no one will know you did. But, if you
discard this thought process, don't sit back
and complain about what bad shape the world is in.

My Best Regards, Honestly and respectfully,

Ben Stein