Recent Posts

Saturday 1 February 2014

Hollywood Awards Child Molester

Pro-Family Marches Tomorrow in Europe But Not in Dublin


Mrs Ratzinger paulawyd2013
. is organizing huge marches in various European cities, Paris, Rome, London and Madrid.God knows why Dublin not included.

BBB in Great Britain-Nanny State Gone Wild!

Just up the road apiece from here.....

Highlighting A Monk at Norcia, Three


My name is Br. John McKenzie, O.S.B. I was born and raised in Detroit, MI; however, I also lived in St. Louis, MO with my grandparents.  I have one brother (29 years old) and one sister (13 years old).  My mother lives in Detroit, while my father passed away in May of 2007.  Despite not having been raised a Catholic, I was educated by a group of Catholic nuns in elementary school. It had a profound impact on my future vocation.

I spent time at the Casa Balthasar in Rome from 2003-2005, which is when I heard about the monastic community in Norcia.  After visiting the monastery in 2004 and 2005, I petitioned to join in September 2005.  I made simple profession on December 27, 2006, the feast day of my holy patron, and made solemn vows on October 6, 2009, which providentially was the day I entered the novitiate just three years previously.  Since 2008, I have been studying philosophy at Conception Abbey Seminary College in Missouri. I am expecting to graduate in May of 2012 with a B.A. in philosophy.

Fr. Prior chose the name “John” (which is Hebrew for “God’s grace”) for me, which, incidentally, was my first choice.  St. John the Apostle (or “the Theologian”) shows us how important love of God and love of neighbor are.   In loving God, I am able to fall more deeply in love with Christ Jesus the savior of the entire human race.  In loving neighbor, I learn how to overcome differences with my brother monks and, as St. Paul says, “bear one another’s burdens” (cf. Gal 6:2).  Community life, therefore, enables the monk to root out vices and acquire virtues—both necessary in loving God and neighbor.
While in the monastery, I’ve been the guestmaster, assistant cook, basilica coordinator, librarian, and most recently, gift shop manager.  Although, I suppose my first and primary job in the monastery is to be a good and faithful monk!

Some of my favorite saints are St. Gregory the Great, St. Monica, St. Gregory of Nazianzus, St. Ignatius of Antioch, and Moses the Ethiopian.  Finally, I think the seven following points guide my life as a monk:

  1. Live in holy obedience to God, by means of the Abbot, in our case, the Prior;
  2. Be humble and honest all in one (it’s difficult, but it’s a must);
  3. Pray the Divine Office and Holy Mass daily;
  4. Pray Lectio Divina;
  5. Pray the Jesus Prayer constantly, even when I don’t feel like it;
  6. Remain ever attached to the Holy Theotokos (i.e. The Blessed Virgin Mary); and
  7. Examine my conscience at least twice daily.

And many thanks to the Norcia website, as all these are found here....

Highlighting A Monk at Norcia, Two


Ifirst met a monk when I was six years old. At the time, all I knew was that a monk was someone who, like a parish priest, served the King of Heaven, except that instead of residing at a parish by himself, he lived in a large castle called an Abbey together with many other brothers who were just like him. It made me think of the knights of King Arthur and the brotherhood of the Round Table. Throughout my younger years this ideal of perpetual brotherhood grew within me and drew me on. Growing up in a large family of nine, with two older sisters and six younger brothers, I was no stranger to brotherhood on a large scale, but I wanted that same brotherhood on a deeper more spiritual level, with not only younger brothers, but older brothers as well, serving under the most loving Father and noblest King of all, Christ the Lord.

So it was that as soon as I had completed my four years of liberal arts at Thomas Aquinas College in California, I left friends, family and fatherland of Butte, Montana and became a monk of Norcia.

Once I had entered into the tranquility and rhythm of the monastic life, however I soon came to realize that the exterior quiet of the monastery was there to allow the monk to focus his energies on the deeper and far more intense battlefield of the thoughts. I came to see that my boyish image of monks as warriors was very accurate. Being still young and inexperienced, I knew that I needed help and guidance in this spiritual combat, so when I found the writings of my patron, St. Evagrius Ponticus, written precisely for the monk as a warrior of the interior life, I became a devoted disciple. However, as I read on, I found that my image was incomplete; not only must the monk be a vigilant warrior, but also a loving shepherd, caring for those around him as a good shepherd would love his sheep and gaurding the inner world of his imagination with all gentleness and humility, striving with all his might to pray as he ought. Thus, when I made my simple vows, I asked for the name Br. Mary Evagrius,commemorating my two great models of the spiritual life.

Although the interior life of prayer is of essential importance for the monk, yet the exterior life is very important as well, the life of fraternal relations and manual labor. Since I arrived, I have had many different jobs, from floor cleaner and laundry-man to guest-master and store-manager. Right now I work in the monastery brewery, trying my best to praise God with the work of my hands. The good that I accomplish is completely His, To Him be the honor and the glory.

Highlighting A Monk at Norcia, one


I was born in Algonac, Michigan, the third child in a family of ten. I studied at Thomas Aquinas College in California, and then at the International Theological Institute in Austria, earning an S.T.L. there in 2000. I spent some time in another community, the Society of St. John, before joining the monastery in the summer of 2004, due to a desire for a fuller liturgical life and for the fuller commitment of religious vows.
Since joining the monastery, I was the sacristan for several years, then the accountant, and most recently I was appointed Subprior in 2009, while retaining my accounting duties. Additionally, as time permits, I have been working on a doctorate for the University of the Holy Cross in Rome. I was ordained a priest on October 31st, 2009. The opportunity to celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass has been truly wonderful and has deepened my monastic life as well.
One of the most memorable events since I entered the monastery was my pilgrimage to the Holy Land, which I made in January 2010 – each monk makes such a pilgrimage once at some point after solemn vows. It was an incredible experience and has increased my faith, making it much more concrete and distinct in meaning.
My special patrons are St. Thomas Aquinas (thus my monastic name) and St. Thérèse of Lisieux. While neither saint is Benedictine, this is relatively unimportant to me, since as St. Benedict says, we all serve under the same King.

On Illness, The Dark Night and Death Two

Some readers have asked me to write about the isolation of the elderly and disabled. I see this in tweets and in my comment box, as well as in my e-mail.

The ideals of community which I have shared on this blog in the past week must include a real reaching out of the sick and elderly, as well as the disabled. In times of trial, these people are the most vulnerable along with children.

I sincerely believe that each Catholic married family should "adopt" a disabled person or an elderly person. When I lived in a place near an old lady years ago, my son and I adopted her, as her children did not live close by her flat. We made sure she was ok with food and company. We sat in her living room, and talked with her about her family far away.

She is gone now, but we remember her.

Our little family adopted another older woman in the neighborhood years ago. She had not been able to have children in her life, and after her husband died, she needed community.

So many people do not even realize the isolation of those in their neighborhoods. The deceit of socialism tells people that "there is always a government program" to care for the elderly. There are no government programs for sharing the Scriptures, or prayer, or taking people to Church on Sunday.

Some older people have told me that they are in the Dark Night of the Soul. They recognize the purification which is happening in their lives.

They welcome this. But, even though people are in the Dark Night, this does not mean that they should be completely isolated.

To share in the suffering of another person is not only a duty for the Catholic, but a grace.

We are all too busy to notice the little old lady in the store who takes a long time to shop, or the man who sits in the back of church at daily Mass who is a widower.

Each one of these persons is Christ among us. As Catholics, let us not forget or overlook those, who are the journey to eternal life, are approaching God. They may need us to encourage them on the way.

I sincerely hope that no old person ends up alone in a hospice or hospital, despairing of God, because no one noticed them in their church.

We are our brother's and sister's keepers.

On Illness, The Dark Night and Death

Many saints endured long illnesses. Some endured short illnesses. SS. Francis of Assisi, Teresa of Avila, Therese of Lisieux, Gemma Galgani, Pier Georgio Frassati, Karl of Austria, Margaret of Castello, John Paul II, and many, many others endured months and weeks, if not years, of serious illness.

Coming in and out of asthma attacks and reactions to meds since January 3rd, my birthday, I have had time to contemplate the effect of illness in the Dark Night of the Soul.

I want to share with you that none of this is romantic or easy. To romanticize illness and to pretend that the purification of the body and soul is not painful cannot be helpful exercises.

Remember also, that the great hardship of illness is isolation. One must stay inside, sometimes be bed-ridden, suffer long hours without someone noticing, and keep up one's prayer life as much as possible.

Sometimes, all the sick person has is will-power.

And, most frequently, one is thrown back on the grace of the moment, without the sacraments, without group prayer.

St. Therese the Little Flower could not receive Communion most of the time in the last 18 months of her life.

I have had to give up daily Mass and weekly Confession, as well as Adoration.

The very spiritual strengths a person needs when ill are the very things taken away. But, God allows this to happen.

He allows these trials for several reasons-punishment for our sins, purification and intercessory prayer.

However, here is the rub.

When one is ill, it is easier for the evil one to tempt one, as one's defenses are down. Satan stands at the bedside and accuses, condemns, lies.  (Sorry Chrome crashed in the middle of this.)

The ill person needs the prayers of the Church as well as focusing on their own time with God.

Be kind to those who are ill. Pray for them and do not think that illness is a time for prayer from the ill person.

It is not. And, in the Dark Night, when God is purging the senses and the soul, illness may be part of this purgation.

Here are two quotations from Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati

"All around the sick and all around the poor I see a special light which we do not have."

What wealth it is to be in good health, as we are! But we have the duty of putting our health at the service of those who do not have it. To act otherwise would be to betray that gift of God.

to be continued..........

Good news for the Church in Glasgow

On Lying

"Everyone lies.'

"All the people at work lie."

"Husbands and wives are not honest with each other."

"People in this town never really tell you what they think."

"You can't win; If you tell lies people will distrust you. If you tell the truth people will dislike you."

I am saddened by the cynicism of so many of my Catholic friends who are no longer able to believe in the truth. So many have fallen into a complete distrust in virtue, being surrounded by those who are steeped in evil.

This is why community is so important--as being around those who want to pursue virtue and live the life of Christ in the world is becoming more and more a necessity.

To be isolated in this world as a Christian could be deadly for those involved in tough times. 
The Father of Lies is the devil. And, if one is surrounded by lies, one may miss the real deception.

For there shall arise false Christs and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch as to deceive (if possible) even the elect. Matthew 24:24

If your job is draining your spiritual life because of the negative and deceptive environment, absolutely get a spiritual director and a good confessor.

If we are not honest in little things, we shall not be honest in big things. And, the first deception is self-deception.

Review of Thomas Aquinas Series and More on Sloth

These are reviews of repeats this past week and long ago, but someone mentioned sloth to me and I guess I wanted to encourage this person on the way to perfection

Most Americans are work-alcoholics. We have the problem of not being reflective enough. But, sloth is the great sin which is hidden in our society. It is "too ok" to have a lot of down time these days.


For my friend who is working to get rid of this predominant fault, God bless you.

Remember, a lukewarm Catholic is most likely suffering from the sin of sloth.

A Tragic Cultural Reality-Ignoring the Interior Life

I was in the doctor's office on Thursday and decided to look at two magazines, which catered to those who are retired.

These types of magazines have names like "Maturity Plus", or "The Best Years", or "Modern Retirement",

I was shocked at what I saw.

An entire world of retirement unfolded in the pages which dealt with one thing only-pleasure.

Articles on sex after retirement, romantic relationships, advertisements for cruises, holidays in every warm place in the world, diets for the retired and even clothing for the comfort of the retired. Housing is also advertised.

The extremely depressing articles in these magazines were the calendars of events for the local retirements condos and communities. Let me make a list. These were daily occurrences.

Bridge and other card games
Talks on Flowers or whatever
Craft sales of trivia
Special theme dinners
Field trips
Fashion shows
Parties to cover all the holidays
Health issues seminars
Insurance seminars
More holiday information
Aerobics and other exercises
Shopping trips (Why buy more?)

The elderly have been reduced to children in the playground. They are being led back to the sandbox when they should be concentrating on meeting God face to face. Now, these things may be good in themselves, but there comes a time when the interior life but take precedence over the exterior.

This is one reason why God lets us age and lose our outward beauty, so that we are faced with working on our inward beauty.

Where is there anything about the following?

Preparing for death
Examination of conscience
Developing a prayer life
Moving into the journey and final stages of purification
Meditations on the Last Four Things: Death, Judgement, Hell, Heaven
Outreach to charities
Counseling younger Christians
Going to Adoration
Praying outside the abortion clinics
Volunteering in churches, food banks, etc.
Spiritual direction
Bible studies

The other worrying thing I saw were services in some of these places in non-denominational chapels with non-denominational chaplains.

Mass? Confession? Adoration?

What have we done and why? God has blessed many of us with the declining years of our lives in order to come closer to him. These years should not be a mirror image of the active years of career or house making, child-bearing or making money.

These are the years left for the building of the interior life of the soul. But, if this generation of the elderly are being taught and encouraged only to think of the exterior and pleasure, as if they are getting their heaven on earth, their earthly reward, they are missing out on the possibility for true holiness, for perfection, which comes not from the pursuit of busyness or trivia, but from reflection, study, reading the Scriptures, intense prayer, quiet.

Not only have we created in the West a youthful generation of narcissists, we have allowed our elderly to fall under the spell of  "me-ism". How sad, that some, who thought they were on the way to heaven in their youth, may find the door shut to them at the end of a long life.

Matthew 25:11-13

11 But at last come also the other virgins, saying: Lord, Lord, open to us.
12 But he answering said: Amen I say to you, I know you not.
13 Watch ye therefore, because you know not the day nor the hour.