Saturday, 3 February 2007

It Did Exactly What It Said On The Tin !

Wow! What an amazing day...

I felt a little awkward opening up my mobile phone every few minutes, but as Fr Tim had forgotten to hand over his snazzy camera (possibly a strategic decision on his part... I am a little clumsy with delicate electronic items), I had to make do...

(THAT, my blogging chums, is a cue for you to make lots of entries in the combox saying what wonderful photos they are...)

First of all, we have a cape and veil for the statue of Our Lady which had its first outing today... just so you can see the statue in situ, here is the Lady Altar with the statue in the new cape and veil.

The Day With Mary started with an entrance procession, and the crowning of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima. can't be easy climbing a stepladder in cassock and cope...

There was a procession round the block, praying the Rosary and singing hymns. I stayed to pray in the church as my ankle is playing up. Here you can see the return of the statue...

The Mass was Novus Ordo, but ad orientem and in Latin (which gave me a chance to practice a few of the prayers I've been learning!) Fr Tim preached on the options facing us after we die... Heaven (via Purgatory) or Hell. Something of a no-brainer, but most people act as if there is nothing more than the here and now. We were given a teensy reminder that we are not absolutely sure of our eternal salvation. Hell is still a possibility. Cheerful chap, our PP !

At the end of Mass, it being the Feast of St Blaise, we had the blessing of throats. Here you can see Father blessing the candles. There were three priests doing the blessings as there were rather a lot of people at Mass!

Lunchtime was the much-anticipated opportunity for the TAN-fest. Two shots of some of the books on display:

I was in an ecstatic quandary... so many books, so little money (I deliberately left cheque-book and bank card at home so that I wouldn't be tempted to nip out for further resources...) Unfortunately, the book I really wanted ("The Spiritual Combat" by Dom Lorenzo Scupoli) was out of stock. However, in order to compensate for the devastating disappointment, I treated myself to a few acceptable substitutes...

"The Wonder of Guadalupe" and "Fatima: The Great Sign" (both by Francis Johnston)
"Guidance to Heaven" (Cardinal Giovanni Bona)
"Purgatory" and "Spiritual Conferences" (both by Father Frederick William Faber... chap who wrote some splendid hymns)
"Jesus Our Eucharistic Love" (Fr. Stefano Manelli - founder of the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate... at least, I think so!)
And finally, "The Incorruptibles" (Joan Carroll Cruz)

So that should keep me out of mischief for a while... Ok, back to the Day With Mary...

We had Exposition and then the Blessed Sacrament procession (round the block again) and then the Rosary and a sermon on Our Lady by Fr George Roth (one of the Fransiscan Friars of the Immaculate) He's great, though his broad American accent takes a bit of getting used to!

After a break for tea, we had Stations of the Cross (done as a meditation and prayers... there were too many people to have a procession round the stations) another sermon on Our Lady (delivered by Fr Tim... very moving, I hope he posts it on his blog!) a final Rosary, and Benediction.

And a treat for the Traddies:

Finally, the statue was carried out of the church, and we all waved goodbye with white hankies (a tradition started in Fatima) while singing a farewell hymn.

The day was really wonderful. With the large number of people going to Confession I'm sure that several Holy Souls were sprung from Purgatory.

And My Patron Saint For 2007 is...

...St Ambrose!

His feast is December 7th. I was delighted to see that he is the patron of candle-makers (I adore candles, and get quite peeved when I realise how they have become associated with dodgy liturgy!) The association with candles is because he was known as the honey-tongued Doctor, for his eloquence, and pictures often show bees... (bees = beeswax, wax = candles... come on, people, keep up!)

Ambrose was also a writer of liturgical hymns. Given his stance against the Arians, he would probably approve of my position on dodgy and heretical hymns, which must be why he picked me!

Of course, the most famous tale told about St. Ambrose is that he was Governor of Milan when two opposing factions were fighting over who should be their next Bishop. The legend tells how a young child cried out "Ambrose bishop!" and this was enthusiastically taken up by the surrounding crowds... Ambrose wasn't too keen, and promptly did a runner. On being persuaded to return, he pointed out that he wasn't even baptised, being only a catechumen. So he was baptised, ordained priest and consecrated Bishop within the space of a week.

And, last but not least, as Bishop of Milan, St. Ambrose helped to convert St. Augustine...

You can read more HERE and check out some of his writings.

Many, many thanks to Moneybags for doing this - there are an awful lot of Bloggers who want to be picked by their own personal saint, so the work involved is phenomenal!!

If you didn't spot my previous post on being picked by a Patron Saint, then pop on over to A Catholic Life and post a comment asking to have a saint allocated.

Friday, 2 February 2007

Eager Anticipation

The Day With Mary crowd visit the parish tomorrow. As well as it being a fantastic day, (Marian and Blessed Sacrament processions round the area, Mass (lots of Latin), Confession, Adoration, Crowning of the statue of Our Lady, some sermons about Our Lady, the Rosary, traditional Marian hymns and other devotions, and a packed church full of lots of people just wanting to worship God), there is also a bookstall with a selection of books published by TAN (so no touchy-feely nonsense to be filtered out, and no danger of picking up anything which is in open dissent with the Magisterium...) There's also a statue, medal, scapular and prayer-card section...

Oooh, I'm salivating in anticipation...

To top it all off, our own statue of Mary at the Lady Altar will be clothed in the new cape which has just been made. I've got a shot of me in front of the statue at the top of my blog... now all I need is someone with a camera tomorrow for a before-and-after photo-shoot...

Fr Tim, that is a hint...

Sequence For Candlemas

Especially for Fr Tim at the Hermeneutic of Continuity: the Sequence for Candlemas, which is (according to Fr Jim Tucker of Dappled Things) now preserved only in the Dominican Rite. Yes, well, the Carthusians probably have a version too, but they don't appear to blog!

The Sinner's Guide?

(Apologies to Venerable Louis of Grenada for shamelessly stealing his book title... it's such an excellent book too!) H/T to the Ironic Catholic

Mystery Visitor Speaks Out

Aha! I knew that it would be too much to resist... my 10,000th visitor has identified herself as none other than Autumn Rose.

She asked if there was a prize for being number 10,000. Given that she also pointed out that she's close to reaching 10,000 herself, and I note that she has only had her blog since last September, the answer is no... and I'm going off to sulk...

The Mind Boggles...

It just had to happen sooner or later... This is just soooo bizarre! It certainly provides a smidgeon of light entertainment on the SOR front...

Gay tourist hotels fear equality law

Hoteliers chasing the pink tourist pound have joined criticism of a law outlawing discrimination against homosexuals.

The hotels, which cater for the thriving “exclusively gay” tourism market, say that they should be exempt from the Sexual Orientation Regulations as they will be forced to accept heterosexual guests.

Some say that a ban on “gay only” advertising could put them out of business.
There were also concerns that some heterosexual couples might be unhappy if they unwittingly booked into a gay hotel.

John Bellamy, who runs Hamilton Hall, in Bournemouth, described the new laws as “discrimination against gays”. He said: “We are a unique venue and we only admit gay and bisexual men. Under this law, we would go out of business. This so-called anti-discrimination law is actually discriminatory as it discriminates against gays.”

H/T to the Dúnadan for highlighting this one! You can read the full article HERE.

Ha! I Am a Genius!

I was somewhat worried when, after my little flirtation with Haloscan, my comboxes came up with error messages. And then, having noticed that nearly everyone else had the same problem, I relaxed. this morning, when the problems on other blogs appeared to have been sorted but mine was still showing errors, I started to worry again.

I did the obvious... I re-uploaded the template. Nothing. I refreshed the page. Nada. And then I had a flash of pure inspiration: I changed my settings for the comments not to appear in a pop-up window... and then I changed the settings back again...

Problem sorted. I was interested to note that my old comboxes (not working) came up as www.blogger whereas the new comboxes (fully functional) are www2.blogger, so I wonder if this is some sort of changeover problem... even though I've been beta for ages...

Anyway, I am a genius. It's obvious...

...go on, put in a comment... you know you want to...

Thursday, 1 February 2007

Plus Ça Change, Plus Ça Même

You've Changed 32% in 10 Years

Ah, the past! You may not remember it well - because you're still living in it.
While you've changed some, you may want to update your wardrobe, music collection and circle of friends.

H/T to Mark

Blog Milestone!

Yes! Checking my Sitemeter stats (again) I find that I have passed the 10,000 visitors mark...

Ok, rain on my parade, why don't you... I know that there are blogs for whom this is small beer, but, given that I nearly didn't start this blog because I didn't think anyone else would be interested in reading my mad ramblings, I'm feeling rather pleased with myself...

BTW, my 10,000th visitor was from the UK... He/she/it/they visited from Christ's Rose at 11:51 am today, and then decided to go and explore the patron saint for 2007 over at A Catholic Life...

Wednesday, 31 January 2007

How Not to Change Your Blog

I was playing around with my blog this evening, and decided to look into switching to Haloscan for my comments boxes.

It appeared to have fairly idiot-proof instructions: they even provided a video showing what to do for Blogger clients. I managed to follow the instructions, and everything looked really good. I was a very, very happy bunny, and felt very pleased with myself...

*sigh* ...pride cometh before a fall, and I was horrified to notice that Haloscan had reset all of my comments boxes...

...which meant that I would lose all of the comments previously made. Now some of those comments were actually better than the posts they appeared on! Luckily, one of the steps outlined was to save the previous version of the blog which could then be reinstalled...

...however, if anyone out there knows how to get haloscan to retrieve the previous comments, then please let me in on the secret...

New Cartoon

— "I died while waiting for a cure to be found by research on embryonic stem cells, and you?"

— "I was that embryo!"

H/T to the American Papist.

The Douay-Rheims Bible

In the Comments section of my post about my purchase of a Douay-Rheims Bible, Mark wanted to know how it read. I already said that the font was clear and a decent size, and each verse started on a new line. But, just in case anyone else was interested, I thought I'd supply the snippets Mark was interested in... I haven't started each verse on a new line, but I have kept the emphasis and punctuation.

First, 1 Corinthians 13:4-6

"Charity is patient, is kind: charity envieth not, dealeth not perversely; is not puffed up; is not ambitious, seeketh not her own, is not provoked to anger, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth with the truth;"

Next, Psalm 139:2-4

"Deliver me, O Lord, from the evil man: rescue me from the unjust man. Who have devised iniquities in their hearts: all the day long they designed battles. They have sharpened their tongues like a serpent: the venom of asps is under their lips."

The Song of Simeon, Luke 2:29-32

"Now thou dost dismiss thy servant, O Lord, according to thy word in peace; Because my eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples: a light to the revelation of the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel."

Given the current climate with regard to the "pro multis" phrase used at the Consecration, I spotted that Luke 2:34 had a footnote which shed rather more than a little light on it...

"And Simeon blessed them, and said to Mary his mother: Behold this child is set for the fall, and for the resurrection of many in Israel, and for a sign which shall be contradicted;"

And the footnote:

"Christ came for the salvation of all men; but here Simeon prophesies what would come to pass, that many through their own wilful blindness and obstinacy would not believe in Christ, nor receive his doctrine, which therefore would be ruin to them: but to others a resurrection, by their believing in him, and obeying his commandments."

Aha! Aha aha! I seeeeeee.....

Death of John Paul the Great

Andrew over at Unam Sanctam has been reading the new book by JPII's Secretary, and it reminded him of the death of the Holy Father and what he was doing when he heard about it.

He's posted some pretty moving photos to help jog our memories, and has invited everyone to share their memories in the combox.

I loved the following cartoon:

Signs at Work

I found this while exploring the Blogosphere...

H/T to Father Joe (he's got more signs HERE.)

Pot-Luck Patron Saint

Moneybags over at A Catholic Life has a lovely post: pick a patron saint (or rather, let the saint pick you) for 2007. Saints are being allocated at random. St Faustina did this in her convent, so you'll be following in her footsteps.

I'll let you know who I get as soon as I find out... oooh, it's like Christmas all over again!

Tuesday, 30 January 2007

Interesting Marketing Ploy...

Having been seriously hacked off by the revelation that the various modern translations of the Bible haven't just updated the English but have severely mangled the meanings in the process, I decided to get myself a copy of the Douay-Rheims Bible. If you missed my anguished cries on the subject, you can read them again HERE.

I was informed that this was the original English translation of the Vulgate, and as such would give the meanings of the Scriptural texts as understood by my favourite Saints.

I looked up Douay Rheims on Amazon, but balked at paying over £40 for a Bible (yes, ok, I'm a skinflint... but it would cost less to download it from the Internet and print it myself!)

I decided to give Abe Books a go. Ignoramus that I am, I was slightly confused by the apparent variety of Douay-Rheims Bibles on offer, and had to check with my PP to ensure that one revised by Bishop Challoner was ok...

...well, I didn't know that Bishop Challoner did his revisions circa 1749! It could have been some dreadful modernist version... (I did say I was an ignoramus!)

I finally plumped for a Bible published by TAN (usually a safe bet on the orthodoxy front), encouraged by the fact that it was supplied by a bookseller in the UK... and once I decide I want a book, I really want that book, like yesterday... or sooner.

It arrived today (one of my neighbours kindly accepted it from the postman in my absence.) I am not really enamoured of the cover (shiny black card - standard paperback thickness) and I have doubts about the staying power of the binding, but the text is in a good size font, and each verse is on a new line, so it's great for checking references.

Most books have some sort of blurb by the publisher on the back cover. In this case, the blurb was actually on a separate piece of paper folded over the back cover (the cover itself was identical to the front.)

Just for once, the publisher's blurb made for entertaining reading: I include just a few points for your edification...

The Douay-Rheims Bible is the only traditional Catholic Bible in the English language.

The Douay-Rheims Bible was the only Catholic English translation of Scripture commonly in use for over 200 years.

We maintain this is the best, safest, and most accurate translation of the Bible in English.

The Douay-Rheims Bible is so packed with meaning that a single phrase can yield profound insight - because it was translated with great respect for every word.

And my personal favourites: (emphasis and punctuation as provided by the publishers!)

The footnotes in the Douay-Rheims Bible are totally Catholic and are definitely not the opinions of modern biblical scholars.

No inclusive language!


Sunday, 28 January 2007

Conquest of the Middle East

This was really fascinating! 5000 years of history in 90 seconds...

H/T to Idle Speculations

Catholic Blog Awards

The 2007 Catholic Blog Awards are coming around... Nominations will be taken from Sunday, February 4th to Friday, February 9th. Voting will be during the week of February 12th to 16th.

So that you can give the matter some thought, the categories are as follows:

1. Best Overall Catholic Blog
2. Best Designed Catholic Blog
3. Best Written Catholic Blog
4. Best New Catholic Blog
5. Best Individual Catholic Blog
6. Best Group Blog
7. Best Blog by Clergy/Religious/Seminarian
8. Funniest Catholic Blog
9. Smartest Catholic Blog
10. Most Informative & Insightful Catholic Blog
11. Best Apologetic Blog
12. Best Political/Social Commentary Catholic Blog
13. Best Insider News Catholic Blog
14. Most Spiritual Blog

H/T to Happy Catholic for the categories.
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