Saturday, 11 October 2008

Worth A Try...

Ok, ok... I know I haven't actually got a snowball's chance in hell of getting into the top 3, but, at 80 votes, I guess things aren't too shabby for a blog mostly about hair, nails, cats and chocolate.  Somehow or other I managed to include enough religion to be nominated for the Best Religion Blog (Kat must have been on serious medication!) and I'm currently on page 2.

How about a vote (out of pity if nothing else)?  Pretty please...

My site was nominated for Best Religion Blog!

Belated Thanks...

I had a very nice surprise this morning.  I was asking Hilda, our Sacristan, something before Mass, and Fr. Tim came in.  "Sorry," he said, "I forgot to give this to you before!  And that just arrived..."

"This" turned out to be a holy card of Our Lady - showing her Immaculate Heart, and an enamelled medal of St. Benedict in a pouch with a prayer.  It's a bit difficult to see, but it looks as if Our Lady's heart is crowned with roses... I've never spotted that detail before.  Anyway, they were apparently sent with the cross given to Fr. Tim at the London blognic, from Andrew at Unam Sanctam.  Belated thanks, Andrew, it was really sweet of you to think of me (and now you know why I didn't say anything earlier!!)

"That" was a postcard, all the way from Nagasaki.  I was slightly confused, as it was addressed to me using my Christian name (a closely guarded secret, as it's one I loathe, on account of there being a surfeit of us born in the same year!) but was obviously sent care of the church...  I then spotted that it was from Brendan Allen, of Guard Me With Your Glory fame (though he's gone a little quiet since the announcement of his engagement!)  Reading the card, I discovered that it made Brendan think of me.  Looking more closely at the picture, I think I can see why: the Cathedral is positively stuffed with ladies wearing mantillas (or should that be mantillae?)  So, many thanks to you too, Brendan.

The prayer to St. Benedict is worth reproducing, I think:

O Holy Father, blessed by God both in grace and in name, who, whilst standing in prayer with thy hands raised to heaven, didst most happily yield thy angelic spirit into the hands of thy Creator, and hast promised zealously to defend against all the snares of the enemy, in the last struggle of death, those who shall remind thee of thy glorious departure and the heavenly joys, protect me, I beseech thee, O glorious Father, this day and every day, by the holy blessing, that I may never be separated from our Blessed Lord, from the society of thyself, and of all the blessed.  Through the same Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Solemn High Mass...

I'm still trying to catch up with a backlog of bloggable items!

Tuesday was the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, our parish's patronal feast.  The statue of Our Lady was duly dressed and her altar adorned with flowers, and there was a special Mass celebrated in the evening.  I was delighted that the set of books I had to mark before leaving work was for a small class of only 20 or so students, so I was able to escape early at 5:00pm... just as well, as I had been asked to organise a few bottles of wine and some nibbles for after the Mass.

Dr. Lawrence Hemming was deacon, and Fr. Charles Briggs was sub-deacon, and we had a cohort of our regular servers, as well as the schola which visits us on the first Saturday of the month for our regular Missa Cantata. I bagsied my favourite pew, and took a few photos.  I was aware that I'd gone slightly overboard on the previous Saturday (well, ok, 17 minutes' worth of footage, with a photo duration of 2 seconds, suggests that maybe I had gone more than slightly overboard...) so I was rather more restrained.  I did, however, manage to get some of my favourite points:

Blessing of the sub-deacon before the Gospel:

Incensing the gifts:

The Consecration - first genuflection:

The Consecration - Elevation of the Host:

The Consecration - second genuflection:

It was a magnificent occasion, and well worth making the effort to attend: Solemn High Masses, unfortunately, do not happen every day...

It Only Took Me A Week...

...I also had to cut the beginning (where the versus populum altar was being transformed into a beautiful ad orientem one) and the end (from the Ecce agnus Dei - at least I think that's where it ends) due to the file being way too big for You Tube otherwise... I also had to compress it a bit, and I haven't done that before...

Friday, 10 October 2008

A Bishop Who Takes His Role Seriously...

Wow ! Bishop O'Donoghue has really gone and done it again! Not only did he publish Fit For Mission? Schools, (for which he was hauled before a none-too-friendly and definitely disrespectful Parliamentary Committeeand, far from backing off, follow it up with Fit For Mission? Church, but he has also decided to tell his diocesan Social Care Agency exactly where they stand if they continue to disregard Catholic moral teaching.

And he hasn't tried to fudge the issue.

It rather puts the bishops down-South to shame, especially after they have caved in on the Adoption Agencies thing.  On a side note, it also makes the Southwark Diocese's Towards a Vision consultation exercise look pretty wishy-washy too!

Twitch of the mantilla to the South Ashford Priest.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Fighting Against Evil...

I mentioned before that the government's Human Fertilisation & Embryology (HFE) Bill was nothing short of diabolical.  The creation of human-animal hybrids, the allowing of embryo experimentation and the proposals to make abortion more freely and easily available are all vicious attacks on the sanctity of human life, and, dress it up as you will, those attacks stem ultimately from one source.

It has its report stage, and third reading on October 22nd.

We have a duty to fight against evil, we cannot just passively hope it will go away.  So, if you are in the UK, write, email or telephone your MP.  This site will help you figure out who your MP is if you don't know already.

Try and get to the Rosary Crusade of Reparation on Saturday, October 11th, starting at 1:45pm outside Westminster Cathedral and finishing at the Brompton Oratory at about 5pm.

Alternatively, attend the 1000 Crosses for Life event on Saturday, 18th October.  Starting at 1pm from Westminster Cathedral, the procession will be walking across Lambeth bridge, re-crossing the river at Westminster bridge and ending with a mourning ceremony at Westminster Abbey.

And, whether you are in the UK or not, pray for the defeat of this monstrous legislation.

More details about action which you can take can be found HERE.

Holy Michael the Archangel, defend us in the day of battle,
be our safeguard against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray,
and do thou, O prince of the heavenly host,
by the power of God,
thrust down to hell Satan, and all wicked spirits
who wander through the world
for the ruin of souls.  Amen.

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Last One... I Promise...

I am working on a YouTube video of last Saturday's Missa Cantata.  I was a little overenthusiastic - I took over 500 photos - and it all needs sorting out a little, so it's taking longer than anticipated! (I also took some photos of tonights stunning Solemn High Mass for the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, but they really will have to wait until I have some spare time!)

Monday, 6 October 2008

Busy, Busy, Busy...

As I said in a previous post, this is looking like the week from Hell, blogwise... (it's pretty good otherwise!)  So that you don't think I've died, or anything, I thought I'd put up a cat post.


...but isn't this little mite adorable?

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Worldwide Rosary For The Unborn

On Saturday, 18th October, between 9am and 10am, everyone is being asked to pray a rosary for the intention of an end to the surgical and non-surgical killing of unborn babies.

This is being co-ordinated by the St. Michael the Archangel Organisation: the idea is that, if everyone prays at this time, then there will be rosaries said somewhere in the world throughout the 24 hour period... "circling the Earth with multiple waves of rosaries."

Advertise it.  And pray it.

For Those Who Have Mastered Giving Their Cat A Pill...

I read this over at The Ironic Catholic, and she must be slightly off the wall on some sort of medication: giving the cat a bath is not something to be undertaken lightly (I have given Sylvester a bath, but that was because his digestive tract reacted very badly to travel on the Woolwich Ferry... and I held him down while my sister wielded the shower attachment...)

This is only part of the story...

"Some people say cats never have to be blessed. They say cats are spiritual goners from their first swat. Others, mostly calendar makers, find them akin to angels on earth, needing nothing in their inherent perfection. Others say if you can bless a plastic religious article bought at favorite Shrine X but made in China, you can certainly have a living, breathing cat blessed.

I've spent most of my life moving from one opinion to the other. But since my parish doesn't have a blessing of the animals on the Feast of St. Francis, I am reduced to covering my kitty's spiritual bases by blessing him informally, in my home, using water, prayer, and song. So on the eve of the Feast of St. Francis, I have some advice you might consider as you place your feline friend under your arm and head for the bathtub."
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