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Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Hell-the right position and the wrong position

Originally posted on December 9th. See updates.  Wrong!

 Above Video--Right!  And which man is in charge of one of the most prestigious seminaries in America?

UPDATE ON MONDAY: the vast majority of comments on the original article are against the modernist position. Good thing, too. But, people, when talking about hell, do not resort to private revelations, but the doctrines of the Church. Just look at the Creed and the CCC.

UPDATE ON TUESDAY:  I am putting links in the commentary box for more follow-up on other sites on this. Take a look.

The girly generation...oops sorry, so sorry

Can't say woof to a dog? A bill will be discussed tomorrow in the House of Lords on public speech, which includes the word "insulting". If this section (5) from the Public Order Act of 1986 is not amended by Parliament, all of us are in trouble, not because we go around insulting people, but because of the subjectivity of the terms of the law.

Here is a section of the article from The Telegraph. We are becoming a sick, silly people. Opps, sorry. I am being insulting. My possibly insulting highlights...

The late Lord Monson, a champion of personal liberties, agreed. Speaking in the House of Lords in the same year, he observed that “the word 'abusive’ can be judged objectively, but 'insulting’ is totally subjective. What one person finds offensive, the next person may be indifferent to… It did not matter very much at first, because I think that the public 20-odd years ago were less thin-skinned than they are now… People are positively encouraged to be touchy, both by the media – whether deliberately or not – and pressure groups.”
The comedian and a fellow campaigner for reform, Rowan Atkinson, recently summed up the difficulties posed by the inclusion of the term “insulting” in the Act. He warned that, under Section 5, criticism, unfavourable comparison or “merely stating an alternative point of view” can be interpreted as an insult and lead to arrest.
The law, in its current form, has been used to arrest gay activists, Christian preachers and a student who called a police horse “gay”. A critic of Scientology was summoned under Section 5. And a young man who said “woof” to a dog was actually convicted, although a court later cleared him. There must be something wrong with a law that can be used by police, prosecutors and the courts in such an excessively broad way.

Catholics, just in case you think the UN is neutral....

I hope all my readers know how to use the tags at the bottom of my posts. You will get, depending on the subject 5-30 connected articles by clicking on the tags, or using main words or ideas in the search bar.

How interesting that a paper would be published on Gramsci by UNESCO. How did I miss this?

And a section from the end of this pro-Marxist paper: my boldface.............and I hope you pick up the Marxist vocabulary. "Ideologies" here would include religion.

Education is a field where theory and practice, culture and politics inevitably merge together,
and where intellectual research and achievement combine with social and political action. However, a distinction, if not an opposition, between these two aspects of education is not uncommon and the
ideological use of culture and science often pushes toward both the ‘neutralization’ of the educational and political effects of cultural development and the ‘justification’ of the political power by domesticated theories, which, therefore, can be defined as ‘ideologies’. It is difficult, within the traditional division and separation of disciplines and fields of cultural research, to define all of that ‘education’, since education is consistently related to the growth of children and the schooling of pupils, no matter whether from nursery school or university.

A profile of Gramsci as an ‘educator’, however, is not based on the few pages which can be
found within his writings on school and education in a traditional sense, but rather on the assumption that the core of Gramsci’s message and even the purpose of his writings is profoundly and largely ‘educational’

As far as Gramsci’s general theory of education is concerned, we believe that the new type of
intellectual in modern society can be more easily found within the administrators and managers of industry and services, within the upper echelons of State administration and in central and local bureaucracy, as well as within the teaching profession and the growing sector of vocational and occupational training, rather than among the traditional ‘academic’ intellectual who still, however, seems to be an opinion leader. The latter is, more or less consciously, becoming rather an ideological shade for political and cultural operations, decided and implemented not by him, but through him.

One could disagree with Gramsci’s analysis and educational strategy. But it cannot be denied
that a study on the history of intellectuals, on the history of the organization of culture, has never been attempted. Intellectuals of a traditional type seem to be expert and specialists on all subjects other than themselves. This is rather meaningful and it can be explained by the arrogance (and the illusion) of believing to be the ‘subject’ rather than the ‘object’ of knowledge.  However, for the intellectual function in general, and for intellectuals of a new type, the lack of awareness of their real role in society could engender a greater risk for democracy: it could mean that the real decision-making processes, namely those which are related with the cultural and political hegemony within society, are displaced from their ‘natural’, i.e. institutional and constitutional, ground, where popular control could be easily exercised, and are assumed by hidden powers, beyond any democratic control. 

Finally, as far as the visible education system is concerned, Gramsci’s approach does not mean that school and university education are irrelevant within the strategy of educating for critical thought.

It suggests rather innovations in methods, contents and organization of study which should be
consistent with the following main points: tighter links between school and work, and between theory and practice; a growing attention to the history of the organization of work and of the organization of culture, and therefore more interest toward the study of the ‘fortune’, i.e. the different interpretations, of classics and theories; and last, but not least, an open debate on the aims of education and the value on which educational action is based in a given society.
Moreover, this new educational strategy and method affects the professional status of teachers,
as far as teachers do not perceive themselves as traditional intellectuals, and therefore independent from both social and political pressures. Education as a process of conformity and hegemony could disturb most teachers, particularly those who work toward helping their pupils or students to achieve more freedom and personal independence. However, the teacher’s awareness of political hegemony as an educational process, for good or bad, could be the starting point for a new professionalism of teachers and educators.

So, the Marxist is the subject of this paper rather than the Catholic Church, which is the only real enemy of ideology.

Scary, as this was written and published in 2000. Catholics have asleep at the wheel. Read the entire paper and my posts on these points.

Ah, the French; Remember, Hollande declared "I don't like the rich"

I would do the same thing, M. Depardieu. Socialism steals. Some interesting links....

Here is a list recommended from a friend of mine...

Anyone who examines the ideology of socialism will see the contrast between the socialist doctrine and the doctrine of the Church.

All the same, it is not out of place to review the condemnation of the popes starting with Pius IX and ending with Benedict XVI. Thus, we present what the popes have to say about socialism as they condemn the socialist doctrine thoroughly and entirely. This is not a comprehensive compilation, but just some samples.

PIUS IX (1846-1878):
“Overthrow [of] the entire order of human affairs”
You are aware indeed, that the goal of this most iniquitous plot is to drive people to overthrow the entire order of human affairs and to draw them over to the wicked theories of this Socialism and Communism, by confusing them with perverted teachings.” (Encyclical Nostis et Nobiscum, December 8, 1849)
LEO XIII (1878-1903):
Hideous monster
“...communism, socialism, nihilism, hideous deformities of the civil society of men and almost its ruin.” (Encyclical Diuturnum, June 29, 1881)

Ruin of all institutions
“... For, the fear of God and reverence for divine laws being taken away, the authority of rulers despised, sedition permitted and approved, and the popular passions urged on to lawlessness, with no restraint save that of punishment, a change and overthrow of all things will necessarily follow. Yea, this change and overthrow is deliberately planned and put forward by many associations of communists and socialists” (Encyclical Humanum Genus, April 20, 1884, n. 27).

A sect “that threatens civil society with destruction”
Leo XIII (1877-1903): Socialists assail the right of property sanctioned by natural law.
“…We speak of that sect of men who, under various and almost barbarous names, are called socialists, communists, or nihilists, and who, spread over all the world, and bound together by the closest ties in a wicked confederacy, no longer seek the shelter of secret meetings, but, openly and boldly marching forth in the light of day, strive to bring to a head what they have long been planning - the overthrow of all civil society whatsoever. Surely, these are they who, as the sacred Scriptures testify, ‘Defile the flesh, despise dominion and blaspheme majesty.’(Jud. 8).” (Encyclical Quod Apostolici Muneris,December 28, 1878, n. 1)

Socialists debase the natural union of man and woman and assail the right of property
“They [socialists, communists, or nihilists] debase the natural union of man and woman, which is held sacred even among barbarous peoples; and its bond, by which the family is chiefly held together, they weaken, or even deliver up to lust. Lured, in fine, by the greed of present goods, which is ‘the root of all evils, which some coveting have erred from the faith’ (1 Tim. 6:10.3), they assail the right of property sanctioned by natural law; and by a scheme of horrible wickedness, while they seem desirous of caring for the needs and satisfying the desires of all men, they strive to seize and hold in common whatever has been acquired either by title of lawful inheritance, or by labor of brain and hands, or by thrift in one's mode of life.” (Encyclical Quod Apostolici Muneris, December 28, 1878, n. 1)

Destructive sect
“...socialists and members of other seditious societies, who labor unceasingly to destroy the State even to its foundations.” (Encyclical Libertas Praestantissimum, June 20, 1888)

Enemy of society and of Religion
“...there is need for a union of brave minds with all the resources they can command. The harvest of misery is before our eyes, and the dreadful projects of the most disastrous national upheavals are threatening us from the growing power of the socialistic movement. They have insidiously worked their way into the very heart of the community, and in the darkness of their secret gatherings, and in the open light of day, in their writings and their harangues, they are urging the masses onward to sedition; they fling aside religious discipline; they scorn duties; they clamor only for rights; they are working incessantly on the multitudes of the needy which daily grow greater, and which, because of their poverty are easily deluded and led into error. It is equally the concern of the State and of religion, and all good men
Saint Pius X (1903-1914)
should deem it a sacred duty to preserve and guard both in the honor which is their due.” (Encyclical Graves de Communi Re, January 18, 1901, n. 21)

SAINT PIUS X (1903-1914):
The dream of re-shaping society will bring socialism“But stranger still, alarming and saddening at the same time, are the audacity and frivolity of men who call themselves Catholics and dream of re-shaping society under such conditions, and of establishing on earth, over and beyond the pale of the Catholic Church, ‘the reign of love and justice’ ... What are they going to produce? ... A mere verbal and chimerical construction in which we shall see, glowing in a jumble, and in seductive confusion, the words Liberty, Justice, Fraternity, Love, Equality, and human exultation, all resting upon an ill-understood human dignity. It will be a tumultuous agitation, sterile for the end proposed, but which will benefit the less Utopian exploiters of the people. Yes, we can truly say that theSillon, its eyes fixed on a chimera, brings Socialism in its train.” (Apostolic LetterNotre Charge Apostolique ["Our Apostolic Mandate"] to the French Bishops, August 25, 1910, condemning the movement Le Sillon)

Benedict XV
The condemnation of socialism should never be forgotten
“It is not our intention here to repeat the arguments which clearly expose the errors of Socialism and of similar doctrines. Our predecessor, Leo XIII, most wisely did so in truly memorable Encyclicals; and you, Venerable Brethren, will take the greatest care that those grave precepts are never forgotten, but that whenever circumstances call for it, they should be clearly expounded and inculcated in Catholic associations and congresses, in sermons and in the Catholic press.” (Encyclical Ad Beatissimi Apostolorum, November 1, 1914, n. 13)

PIUS XI (1922-1939):
Pius XI (1922-1939): "No one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist."
Socialism, fundamentally contrary to Christian truth
“... For Socialism, which could then be termed almost a single system and which maintained definite teachings reduced into one body of doctrine, has since then split chiefly into two sections, often opposing each other and even bitterly hostile, without either one however abandoning a position fundamentally contrary to Christian truth that was characteristic of Socialism.” (Encyclical Quadragesimo Anno, May 15, 1931, n. 111)
Socialism cannot be reconciled with Catholic Doctrine
But what if Socialism has really been so tempered and modified as to the class struggle and private ownership that there is in it no longer anything to be censured on these points? Has it thereby renounced its contradictory nature to the Christian religion? This is the question that holds many minds in suspense. And numerous are the Catholics who, although they clearly understand that Christian principles can never be abandoned or diminished seem to turn their eyes to the Holy See and earnestly beseech Us to decide whether this form of Socialism has so far recovered from false doctrines that it can be accepted without the sacrifice of any Christian principle and in a certain sense be baptized. That We, in keeping with Our fatherly solicitude, may answer their petitions, We make this pronouncement: Whether considered as a doctrine, or an historical fact, or a movement, Socialism, if it remains truly Socialism, even after it has yielded to truth and justice on the points which we have mentioned, cannot be reconciled with the teachings of the Catholic Church because its concept of society itself is utterly foreign to Christian truth.” (Ibid. n. 117)
Catholic Socialism, a contradiction
“[Socialism] is based nevertheless on a theory of human society peculiar to itself and irreconcilable with true Christianity. Religious socialism, Christian socialism, are contradictory terms; no one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist.” (Ibid. n. 120)
Pius XII
PIUS XII (1939-1958):
The Church will fight to the end, in defense of supreme values threatened by socialism 
“[The Church undertook] the protection of the individual and the family against a current threatening to bring about a total socialization which in the end would make the specter of the 'Leviathan' become a shocking reality. The Church will fight this battle to the end, for it is a question of supreme values: the dignity of man and the salvation of souls." (“Radio message to the Katholikentag of Vienna,” September 14, 1952 in Discorsi e Radiomessaggi, vol. XIV, p. 314)

The state can not be regarded as being above all
"To consider the State as something ultimate to which everything else should be subordinated and directed, cannot fail to harm the true and lasting prosperity of nations." (Encyclical Summi Pontificatus, October 20, 1939, n. 60)
“No Catholic could subscribe even to moderate socialism”
“Pope Pius XI further emphasized the fundamental opposition between Communism and Christianity, and made it clear that no Catholic could subscribe even to moderate Socialism. The reason is that Socialism is founded on a doctrine of human society which is bounded by time and takes no account of any objective other than that of material well-being. Since, therefore, it proposes a form of social organization which aims solely at production, it places too severe a restraint on human liberty, at the same time flouting the true notion of social authority.” (Encyclical Mater et Magistra, May 15, 1961, n. 34)
Paul VI

PAUL VI (1963-1978):
Too often Christians tend to idealize socialism
“Too often Christians attracted by socialism tend to idealize it in terms which, apart from anything else, are very general: a will for justice, solidarity and equality. They refuse to recognize the limitations of the historical socialist movements, which remain conditioned by the ideologies from which they originated.”(Apostolic Letter Octogesima AdveniensMay 14, 1971, n. 31)
John Paul II (1978-2005)
JOHN PAUL II (1978-2005):
Socialism: Danger of a “simple and radical solution”
“It may seem surprising that ‘socialism’ appeared at the beginning of the Pope's critique of solutions to the ‘question of the working class’ at a time when ‘socialism’ was not yet in the form of a strong and powerful State, with all the resources which that implies, as was later to happen. However, he correctly judged the danger posed to the masses by the attractive presentation of this simple and radical solution to the ‘question of the working class.’" (Encyclical Centesimus Annus − On the 100th anniversary of Pope Leo XIII's Rerum Novarum, May 1, 1991, n. 12)

Fundamental error of socialism: A mistaken conception of the person
“Continuing our reflections, ... we have to add that the fundamental error of socialism is anthropological in nature. Socialism considers the individual person simply as an element, a molecule within the social organism, so that the good of the individual is completely subordinated to the functioning of the socio-economic mechanism. Socialism likewise maintains that the good of the individual can be realized without reference to his free choice, to the unique and exclusive responsibility which he exercises in the face of good or evil. Man is thus reduced to a series of social relationships, and the concept of the person as the autonomous subject of moral decision disappears, the very subject whose decisions build the social order. From this mistaken conception of the person there arise both a distortion of law, which defines the sphere of the exercise of freedom, and an opposition to private property.” (Ibid, n. 13)
BENEDICT XVI (2005 - present):
“We do not need a State which regulates and controls everything”
Benedict XVI
“The State which would provide everything, absorbing everything into itself, would ultimately become a mere bureaucracy incapable of guaranteeing the very thing which the suffering person − every person − needs: namely, loving personal concern. We do not need a State which regulates and controls everything, but a State which, in accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, generously acknowledges and supports initiatives arising from the different social forces and combines spontaneity with closeness to those in need. … In the end, the claim that just social structures would make works of charity superfluous masks a materialist conception of man: the mistaken notion that man can live ‘by bread alone’ (Mt 4:4; cf. Dt 8:3) − a conviction that demeans man and ultimately disregards all that is specifically human.” (Encyclical Deus Caritas Est,December 25, 2005, n. 28)

Advent Meditations

Do not be surprised if God often sends you occasions to suffer. The more he sends, the more he
shows that he loves you, and the happier you should be, because it is by suffering that he purifies you so that you may be more pleasing in his eyes. These trials make it easy for you to preserve yourselves from sin and to receive the graces of God in abundance. Act so that you may derive this fruit from the trials you experience. Father Alban Butler

Psalm 94:12 Blessed is the man you discipline, O LORD, 
the man you teach from your law;

Proverbs 3:12 For whom the Lord loveth, he chastiseth: and as a father in the son he pleaseth himself
Revelation 3:19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent.

Hebrews 12:6 because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son.

from the excellent staff at LIFESITENEWS-the debate heats up and Britain is mission territory

The ‘disciple of Nero’: UK bishop castigates David Cameron over gay ‘marriage’ plans

Hilary WhiteMon Dec 10 17:10 ESTHomosexuality
LONDON, December 10, 2012 ( – In a two-page letter to Prime Minister David Cameron, Joseph Devine, the Catholic bishop of Motherwell in Scotland, has compared Cameron to Nero, the Roman emperor who persecuted Christians, for his determination to bring forward “gay marriage.” 
Cameron and his government are “devoid of moral competence,” wrote Bishop Devine, adding that that no one believes their promises that the churches will be immune from legal action by homosexualist activists if gay “marriage” is legalized.
Cameron is “out of his depth” and is speaking out of both sides of his mouth when giving assurances to British Christians, the bishop said.
Cameron told media this weekend that he is in favour of churches being “allowed” to conduct “gay weddings.”
The bishop also brought Cameron to task over his government’s pursuit of a legal case at the European Court of Human Rights against Christians being allowed to wear crosses at work. Such contradictions between Cameron’s words and actions, Bishop Devine wrote, “only serve to compound our perplexity about the imperfect fit between your statements and actions. You appear to be creating a political culture in which words mean nothing.”
“You vacillate, ambivalent about the role you wish to perform – the disciple of David or Nero,” the bishop wrote. “With such a contradiction between your statements and actions, on what basis can you expect anyone – Christians in particular – to trust or respect you?”
Click “like” if you want to defend true marriage.
Bishop Devine also had a sharp response to Cameron’s quip that the Church of England should “get with the program” after they voted against ordaining female bishops, calling the comment “indelicate to the point of being offensive.”
“And this from a Prime Minister belittling the nation’s established church. Hardly an example to set for society in general and especially for the youth of this country.”
Bishop Devine concluded, “While I cannot speak for other creeds, let me be quite frank with you. So far as the Roman Catholic Church…is concerned, you are out of your depth. We will take no finger-prodding lectures from anyone or any group devoid of moral competence.”
Leaders of the Catholic and Anglican churches have responded to an announcement by the coalition government that it will bring forward a bill to introduce same-sex “marriage” next week.
“I’m a massive supporter of marriage,” Cameron told the BBC, “and I don’t want gay people to be excluded from a great institution.
“But let me be absolutely 100 per cent clear, if there is any church or any synagogue or any mosque that doesn’t want to have a gay marriage it will not, absolutely must not, be forced to hold it.
“That is absolutely clear in the legislation.”
In a statement to be read out in all Catholic churches in his diocese, Bishop Philip Egan of Portsmouth, responded directly, saying Cameron “is luring the people of England away from their common Christian values and Christian patrimony, and forcing upon us a brave new world, artificially engineered.”
“By attempting to change the natural meaning of marriage, [Cameron] seems utterly determined to undermine one of the key foundations of our society.”
The plan to create gay “marriage,” Bishop Egan said, will “pervert authentic family values, with catastrophic consequences for the well-being and behaviour of future generations.” In the process, Cameron will “smother the traditional Christian ethos of our society and strangle the religious freedom of the Catholic Church in Britain.”
Egan asked Cameron, “Will you exempt the Church, its preachers, resources and premises, from having to support your harmful ideology?” Egan asked whether Catholic schools will be legally protected “to teach the full truth of Christ and the real meaning of life and love.”
A statement from the Church of England issued a statement on Friday saying that their “insistence on the traditional understanding of marriage is not knee-jerk resistance to change but is based on a conviction that the consequences of change will not be beneficial for society as a whole.”
“Our concern is for the way the meaning of marriage will change for everyone, gay or straight.” The Anglican statement, however, followed with the disclaimer, “The proposition that same-sex relationships can embody crucial social virtues is not in dispute. To that extent, the Prime Minister’s claim that he supports same-sex marriage from conservative principles is readily understandable.”
“We believe that redefining marriage to include same-sex relationships will entail a dilution in the meaning of marriage for everyone by excluding the fundamental complementarity of men and women from the social and legal definition of marriage,” the statement said.t

"Quo vadis, Domine?"

Annibale Carracci's "Domine, Quo Vadis" and thanks, Wiki

If you go to Rome, to the Catacombs of St. Callistus (one must see all the catacombs which are open), one is shown the supposed footprints of Christ in stone where St. Peter had his vision of Christ. This is a copy, as the "original" is in  the church of Saint Sebastian outside the walls

St. Peter was leaving Rome. He was on the road when Christ appeared to him. Peter asked, "Where are you going, Lord?" Christ replied that He was going to Rome to be crucified again.

This story is interesting to me for two reasons. One, Peter was fleeing the persecutions of Nero-a good idea to get away! One does not have to put one's self in the position to be martyred.

But, second, Christ has another plan. His Will was that Peter would die a martyr in Rome. Peter had to face martyrdom as this was part of his own salvation. We do not understand the mystery of evil-why God allowed Peter to be martyred. We can speculate, as Peter was not at the foot of the Cross, and the only apostle not martyred, John, experienced Christ's passion and death, joining himself with Christ.

But, it was God's Will for Peter that he would return to Rome.

Have you ever been avoiding pain and suffering only to discover that the inevitability of such were part of God's Will for you?

All we can do in the face of anxiety, suffering, pain, illnesses, etc., is to ask, "Where are you going, Lord?"
And, then, when He tells us, we must follow. That is all we can do.

I am not the most meek and humble of the followers of Christ. When I got cancer, I sat in a basilica and complained to God, in the Autumn of 2009, that He did not experience what I was experiencing. He drew my eyes up to the huge cross in front of the sanctuary. I was stunned. The artist had placed the scar of the piercing of His side exactly where my scar was. I was humbled. Christ has experienced even female pain and suffering and grief. Christ had joined me in my suffering. He had gone before me in all my trials.

I was staring at it-the physical reality of His passion. He bears those scars in heaven and if you look closely at the painting, you will see the marks. His Glorified Body is a testimony for me and for you.

Peter must have thought of Christ's passion and death as he walked back to Rome, slowly, maybe. It was now clear, he knew, that he would be martyred. But, Peter also knew that Someone had gone before Him in suffering and pain and loss.

When we allow God's plan for our life to unfold, we become one with Him. Is there anything else worth while? Peter went back to Rome because he loved the Lord. Love is the answer to all pain and suffering. All.

Sometimes, we do not know where we are going, either literally or metaphorically. But, I believe, no, I know, that Christ has gone before me into all the unknown, in the darkness and in the grief. And, if that is the case, can I not help but follow?

"Quo vadis, Domine?"

Song for St. Lucy and Look at the Ad before the Song

On the sea glitters the silver star
Gentle the waves, favorable the winds.
On the sea glitters the silver star
Gentle the waves, favorable the winds.
Come into my nimble little boat,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!
Come into my nimble little boat,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!

With this breeze, so gentle,
Oh, how beautiful to be on the ship!
With this breeze, so gentle,
Oh, how beautiful to be on the ship!
Come aboard passengers, come on!
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!
Come aboard passengers, come on!
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!

Inside the tents, putting aside supper
On such a quiet evening,
Inside the tents, putting aside supper
On such a quiet evening,
Who wouldn't demand, who wouldn't desire?
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!
Who wouldn't demand, who wouldn't desire?
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!

Sea so calm, the wind so dear,
Forget what makes trouble for the sailor,
Sea so calm, the wind so dear,
Forget what makes trouble for the sailor,
And go shout with merriment,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!
And go shout with merriment,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!

O sweet Naples, O blessed soil,
Where to smile desired its creation,
O sweet Naples, upon blessed soil,
Where to smile desired its creation,
You are the kingdom of harmony,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!
You are the kingdom of harmony,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!

Now to linger? The evening is beautiful.
A little breeze blows fresh and light.
Now to linger? The evening is beautiful.
A little breeze blows fresh and light.
Come into my nimble little boat,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!
Come into my nimble little boat,
Saint Lucy! Saint Lucy!

St. Lucy Kats

Because I grew up in a family with long Catholic roots in Europe, I celebrated Advent in different ways than families where the customs had been interrupted by the Protestant Revolt. Now, thankfully, many of those customs have returned, including celebrating St. Nicholas Day and the Feast Day of St. Lucy. This feast day is celebrated on December 13th in these countries: Sweden, Norway,  DenmarkEstoniaItalyLatviaFinlandHungaryMaltaBosniaBavariaCroatiaSlovakiaSpain and St. Lucia, West Indies (Wiki has this list).

I first made St. Lucy "Kats" or St. Lucy Buns in the 1970s after I moved to Minneapolis. One needs saffron, which is really expensive now, but here is a recipe for "Lussekatter" .

St. Lucy Kats

Prep Time: 2 hours

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes


  • 1 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 tsp. saffron threads, finely crumbled (or 1 tsp. powdered saffron)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 pkg. dry active yeast (4 1/2 tsp)
  • 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, well-beaten, plus one egg white
  • raisins or currants to decorate


Crumble saffron threads into melted butter. Let sit 30 minutes to an hour (this intensifies the saffron flavor).
Heat milk to a light boil, turning off heat when it reaches the scalding point (with small bubbles across the top). Stir in melted butter, sugar, and salt. Pour mixture into mixing bowl and allow to cool until “finger-warm” (still quite warm, but just cool enough to touch). Stir in yeast and let sit for 10 minutes.
Mix 3 1/2 cups flour into liquid. Stir in two well-beaten eggs. Add enough of the remaining flour to form a soft dough (just until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. You don't want to add too much flour).
Transfer dough to a large greased bowl and turn to coat all sides. Cover with a clean towel and allow to rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Punch down risen dough. Lightly knead two or three times on a floured surface. Pinch off small handfuls of dough (about the size of a racquetball) and roll into "snakes." Shape snakes into "S"-shaped buns or other desired shapes (please see my photo gallery of Lucia buns for traditional examples). Place on a lightly greased baking sheet, cover with the towel again, and allow to rise until doubled (about an hour).
Decorate buns with raisins, brush with egg white, and bake in preheated 375º oven about 15 minutes, just until brown. Yield: 20 St. Lucia Buns 

We are more ignorant as a people than those in 1450

Notice the deep theology which was sung 500-700 years or more ago....people were listening and learning.
And to bring together the great heritage of David and Our Dear Lady, Mary, one more from Anonymous 4

Prolis eterne genitor /
 Psallat mater gracie / [Pes] 
Prolis eterne genitor loquens de filio
et prophetis vario vaticinio
consummato temporum iam curriculo
misit unigenitum e celi solio
qui carnem assumeret absque contagio
in beate virginis sacrato utero
ut in carnis vinceret domicilio
hostem cuius vincerat carnis suggestion
et sic digna dieret reconpensation
hominis quam transtulit Ade transgressio
dum pro servo filius offertur domino
homo maior homine dus in filio
sic ablatum cumulat restitution
et offensam diluit amara passio.
Dum pro reis innocens fit immolation
que opertet fieri visitatio
ut relatum fieret satisfactio
incarnati filii iam patet seculo
quam transsumpsit pastorum pura devotio.
Psallat mater gracie gaudet ecclesia
per quam nova gaudet prole celi curia
in excelsis canitur deo gloria,
quo testatur resonans vox angelicapariente genitorem nati filia
vagit in presepio celorum gloria;
o beata que [assident] animalia
pastor petit Bethleem grandi fiducia,
ut cernant in stabulo regentem omnia.
O quam alta summi regis sunt palacia
cui cedunt ut recumbant animalia
ubi queso milites ubi familia
ubi thronus ubi capax aula regia
talia respondeat virgo paupercula
que diversorii parit angustia
cuius fetum enim locant cubicula
ergo regis glorie mater et filia
nos [de hac] ingloria transfer miseria.

When time had run it’s course, the father of the eternal offspring, speaking about the son and the
prophets through diverse prophecies, sent from the heavenly throne his only begotten son, who
was to become flesh without any contagion in the blessed virgin’s hallowed womb, that in this
fleshly abode he might vanquish the devil, whose temptation of the flesh had been victorious, and
that thus man’s fitting compensation might be accomplished, which Adam’s transgression had
postponed; since on behalf of the slave the son, a man greater than man – God in the son – is
offered to the Lord, the restitution thus augments what was once lost and the bitter passion
washes away the offence. Since for the benefit of the culprits the innocent sacrifice takes place,
which needs to bring about the visitation so that the report might be written, it is now manifest to
this age that the Son, having been made flesh, has accomplished the penance, because the
shepherd’s pure devotion has spread the news.

Let the gracious mother sing praises, the church rejoices; because of her the heavenly assembly
rejoices in the new offspring, and glory is sung to God in the highest, wherefore the angels’
voices resoundingly bear witness, while the son’s daughter gives birth to the father. The glory of
the heavens is crying in the manger; o blessed animals sitting there; the shepherd with abounding
trust proceeds to Bethlehem that there in the stable he might descry Him who rules over
everything. O how great are the palaces of the highest king, from whom the animals move away
that they might lie down; pray, where are the soldiers, where is the household, where the throne,
where the spacious royal hall? Let the poor virgin answer such questions, who gives birth in the
cramped spaces of the inn, whose bedchamber accommodates the babe; therefore, mother and
daughter of the glorious king, take us away from this inglorious misery

Adoration Before Communion

Some of us do this spontaneously, with grace, but the proper disposition before receiving Christ in the Host is adoration. Pope Benedict XVI quoted St. Augustine  (both ubiquitous on this blog in the past few days), from Ennarrationes in Psalmos 98, 9) "No one eats that flesh without first adoring it; we should sin were we not to adore it.""

Adoration would be encouraged if there were not songs being sung on the way to Communion, but only a choir selection of Gregorian Chant, or even an organ piece sans voices. The same is true after Communion, where I find celebrants and congregation cannot seem to maintain silence. Here, most of the NO priest do not allow enough time after Communion for adoration and contemplation. Thankfully, in the several parishes I have attended in Dublin, people do not talk in the Church after Mass, which is a great blessing. They do in other areas of Ireland, however.

In this Year of Faith, it seems to me that we could be reminding each other and even our local priests, if needed, that the centre of our Faith is the Eucharist and that we need quiet surrounding the reception of Christ into our bodies and souls.

By the way, a quotation from St. Thomas Aquinas seems fitting as well from the Summa Theologica III 82:31; that no one should touch the Host, "which has not been consecrated and so the corporal, the chalice,and even the hands of the priest are consecrated, so as to be able to touch this sacrament."

We have lost the ability to adore Christ as we do not understand, as a people, the sacredness of what we are receiving. The Vatican Website has provided these quotations from a section titled, Communion received on the tongue and while kneeling, which one can print off and put in the back of churches.