Sunday, March 28, 2010

At Palm Sunday Mass a beaming Fr. Frodo read the part of Christ and two lectors were Peter and the narration of St. Luke. The parishioners were the crowd. Mass was quiet except for a few angry toddlers and a baby who I think will one day be either a singer or a politician becasuse that kid had awesome lung power. I tried to weave my palms into a crown of thorns but just couldn't get it right so I just did a fan.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Vexila Regis

Stabat Mater

Remember four things:
The major media always tries to hurt Catholics during Lent and especially during Holy Week.

When the world approves of the Church and the pope, something is wrong. It means you have weak Protestantized/New Agey crap Church and a weak pope.

The pedophilia scandal is never going to be "over". If you think we can just put it behind us, think again. 20 years from now some poor suffering person is going announce that he was abused by a long dead priest. Long after the fire, the pain still burns.

Stand by the Holy Father. Toughen up. Become a warrior, like Our Lady.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Strange days indeed

"The world holds us to be fools. Let us hold it to be mad."
St. Francis De Sales.
The words of St. Francis are ringing in my ears today cause it seems like America has gone a little further down the road to mad. A lot of pundits say that the American people don't know what's in the new healthcare law and would be horrified. I'm not so sure. I don't think a lot of people care. Most of the people I've listened to this week were estatic. Now granted, I do live in Northern Virginia and work in DC so most of the folks here already owe their living to the government and are quite happy about it. They think they are going to have "free" healthcare and that's all that matters. If you remind them that the English have free health and slovenly nurses, foreign doctors including some female Muslims who refuse to wash their hands because someone might see their naked forearms and become overwhelmed with longing, dirty sheets, dirty floors and docs who legally decide that you are too old, too young or too sick to be treated... they shrugg their shoulders and say that those things won't happen here.
Sr. Carol sold out and got a pen. Bart Stupak apparently suckered a whole lot of people and got three airports and media exposure. A large chunk of the American people think they got free medical and as long as somebody else is paying for their abortions let the road go on forever and the party never end. Strange days indeed.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Pray for us, Holy Mother

My favorite St. Joseph painting

This is unsual but it's the best image of St. Joseph I've ever seen. He is shown as a working man, not a pink and white creation of sentimental women and Jesus looks like a boy, not a sickly little girl. The artist is John Collier. Most modern Chrisian art is dreck and isn't even pretty enough to be called kitsch but this guy is really, really good.

St. Ambrose and St. Michael

Rocky and I have a hobby of visiting parishes in our diocese. We stopped by St. Ambrose in Annandale, Virginia. It's a round church and I couldn't figure out where the front was. The priest sits on one side of the circle and the Blessed Sacrament is on the other side. The altar is in the middle. It's a beautifully decorated church with a painting of St. Ambrose stopping the emperor from entering church and a powerful statue of the saint that hints at what a vital man he must have been. I wish we had an Ambrosian bishop today. We prayed the rosary, admired the stained glass and left for the next church on our trip, St. Michael.

St. Michael was built in the early 60s and looks it. The building just seems worn out and tired. It's round and doesn't look like a church at all until you step inside. Once you cross the threshold it becomes a familiar sight. They have library and bookstore and an Adoration chapel. There were several adorers present kneeling or sitting with Jesus. The carpet was disturbingly dirty but I decided to focus on what was happening in that little room.

A greater miracle than the parting of the Red Sea was taking place. Right there in that little room with the dingy carpet Jesus had deemed to be physically present for our sakes. The Word who came down from heaven and was crucified, died and who rose again was right there. The One who gave His life to cure me of my wicked inclinations was right there. We were all as close to Christ as His disciples were on any given day walking from village to village. Adoration is a powerful thing and a profound gift of love from God.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Thank you, Sisters

Mother Mary Quentin points out that the nuns who signed the letter in favore of Obamcare are not speaking for her or any of her sisters.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

When nuns go bad.

Thanks for nothing, ladies. May your orders dry up and die out. May you never get another dime in donations. I do not know you. Should we meet at Mass, unlikely as that is, I will simply not see you.

Monday, March 15, 2010

St. Mary's of Hagerstown and the Sacred Made Real

This weekend Rocky took me for a weekend getaway to Hagerstown, Maryland. It's very close to the Pennsylvania state line and and Antitem battlefield. For Mass we went to St. Mary's. It's not the prettiest church but the minute we walked in I knew it was a good one. There was long line at the confessional and most of the people in it were young. They have rosaries in the pews for people who want to pray. The church was packed and communion was recieved kneeling at the communion rail. We met nice people and it looks like they take the worship of God seriously.

On Sunday we went to DC and saw the Sacred Made Real exhibit at the National Gallery of Art. It's a collection of the most magnificent Spanish religious sculpture and painting I've ever seen. It was very hard not to take out my rosary and pray. The above painting is the Immaculate Conception by Diego Valasquez and we got to study it up close. The photograph does not do it justice.

Friday, March 12, 2010

My king

My King left his blood on the dusty streets of Jerusalem. He carried a cross instead of a scepter. He wore a crown of pain and thorns instead of gold and diamonds. My King......My King.

Fascinating women bloggers

Hilary Margaret White at Orwell's Picnic. She's certainly not mealey mouthed and I don't think she'd like me but the hard nosed, old fashioned English way she puts things is interesting. I'm either horrified or amused when I visit her blog.

Elena at Tea at Triannon. What lovely, gentle blog. She reminds me of a Northern Melanie Wilkes.

The Anchoress. She gets on my nerves at times but Mrs. Scalia can really write and it's worth it to read her every day.

Cheeky Pink Girl. Honest, tough, never boring.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Monday, March 08, 2010

Ecce Homo

I have given my body to the strikers.... Isaiah 50, verse 6

Sculpture by Gregorio Fernandez.

The Dead Christ by Gregorio Fernandez

This statue is currently at the National Gallery of Art in DC. I'm going to go see it as soon as I can.

Saturday, March 06, 2010

the girl at the gas station

Years ago Rocky and I were on a road trip and stopped somewhere for gas. While Rocky was busy with the car I glanced at the map and outside. I saw two women talking to a man. He looked like a trucker. They came to some kind of agreement and the smiling man walked towards the back of the station with the younger woman who could've been anywhere between 15 and her early 20s. I got out and went in the gas station to get snacks and use the restroom because when Rocky stops the car you'd better go while you can. When Rocky and I met back at the car and got ready to go I noticed that the man and the younger woman were back. He was still smiling. She wasn't. He spoke again with the older woman and handed her something. About 20 miles down the road I realized what the heck I'd seen.

"I think I saw a lot lizzard at that gas station."
Rocky asked me why I thought that. I described the scene. "Yeah, that was a lot lizzard," he agreed. A lot lizzard, if you don't know is a prostitute who works the gas stations and truck stops. It's a pitiful, dangerous way to live and that young woman didn't look anything like Julia Roberts or Dolly Parton.

Today, I read about Transport for Christ, an Evangelical group has been going out to the truck stops since 1951, to bring the gospel and suddenly remembered the girl at the gas station. I hope she made it out of there.

St. Mary Magdalene, pray for us.

Rocky and I decided to take a drive in the country and went down Route 5 through Southern Maryland. We visited St. John Regis. The parish has been which has been around since 1640. The current building went up in 1898.

It's one of the prettiest little Southern Maryland churches I've ever seen. They haven't wreckovated and the Blesed Sacrament is right in front. They have two very handsome Marian shrines in the cemetary. Afterwards we drove to Leonardtown and ate at a superb French restaurant, After that we drove to Piney Point to see the lighthouse and park and then to St. George Island to watched birds.

St. George is a beautiful little spot and I've never had the experience of being on land but below the water before.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Something to ponder

St. Faustina once had a vision in which the Lord told her she was due one day in Purgatory. She was horrified and ashamed and offered to go immediately. The Lord asked her if she'd rather live a longer life and spread His message of mercy and accept whatever earthly suffering came for the sake of souls. She accepted.

It dawned on me after reading this section of her diary that if a pious little Polish farm girl who was worthy of visions still was going to Purgatory for one day then I, and the rest of us of are in a whole lot of trouble.

Big fish in a wee pond

Whenever the Catholic blogs wars get too nasty I remember that the big boys of Cathblogdom are big fish in a teeny tiny primordial dwarfish world. The average American Catholic has never heard of Amy Wellborn, Fr. Z.,the SSPX, the FSSP, Medjugorje, Mark Shea, Fr. Longnecker, or unless they are going through the misery of mariage prep, Christopher West. None of us is as important as we think we are.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

where do these people come from?

After Sunday vigil Mass I watched a little boy crawl on the floor. Later he amused himself by running laps around the church. The look on some of the faces of the adults who watched him would've curdled milk. His mother said not a word to him and appeared to be completely at peace with his behavior. She reminded me of a young father who once asked with apparent sincerity, how the people who couldn't stand his noisy kids at Mass would stand being in Purgatory. Where do these people come from?

What's going on at most Catholic Colleges?

According to a new study girls at Catholic colleges are more promiscuous than girls at secular schools. This is shameful.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

22 years ago

22 years ago on March 1, Rocky and I got married. It' been a heck of a ride. I couldn't have asked for more.