Around St. Blog's: November 2006 Archives

Making New Acquaintances

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I don't get out much.

Not even in the blog world.

Frankly, there are just too many blogs of interest and I often can't keep up with the very limited, but very worthy list of blogs in my side column.

So as a result, I am often last to the party, but I often arrive.

I just found a blog by a priest that really struck me. Bonfire of the Vanities has been around for a while, but as I am not particularly drawn to priestly or religious blogs (by sheer virtue of them being priestly or religious) and because I had not encountered Fr. Fox elsewhere, I missed this wonderful blog.

And what is most wonderful is the providence that brought me there during a very difficult time I am having over a number of issues, personal and faith-related.

What should I find there when I arrive, but this very consoling, very pastoral post:

So: there's a lot of ferment in matters of liturgy -- and yet, a great number of God's people are tired of it all. They've seen a lot of tinkering and monkeying around with liturgy, a lot of changes mandated from the bishops or Rome, and they would like to pray.

Well, there are a number of keyboard combatants out there who say that if a priest doesn't immediately start offering Mass, all in Latin, ad orientem, without extraordinary ministers, with only male servers, etc., etc., he "lacks courage" and seeks a "lowest common denominator" liturgy.

I will leave it to your imagination as to why they have so much time to lecture pastors via the Internet, as well as why their own pastors don't listen to them.

I have said before, I am not a traditionalist. It would be pretension on my part to claim to be so. I came into the Church during the reign of JPII. I came in with a lot of struggle and a lot of turmoil and it has taken me a long time to shed many of my protestant trapppings. And honestly, they aren't all gone yet. Nor do I think they will ever be. And that's all right because it is part of who I am. But I am not a traditionalist.

And I am turned off by the anger and bitterness of many traditionalists. (Not that I don't understand it, I do. And I even sympathize. But the rigidity that it often instills isn't particular attractive nor conducive to showing the wonders of the Catholic Faith. On the other hand, if in one fell swoop all that you loved and all the supported you and held you up through years of faith life were swept away and simultaneously the secular revolution entered a phase that brought faith-life to a stand-still. . . well, you get the point. It isn't that traditionalists are wrong or don't have good reason for how they feel, it's just that for some the bitterness of that feeling leaks into the conversations and interactions they have in general. For a long time I thought I was opposed to the Latin Mass and the return thereto; it took me a while to figure out that what I was opposed to was the personal offensiveness of a small number of people who ardently desired that return.)

And I have to admit to be numbed, aggravated, and confused by much of the trumpeting and crowing and partial announcements and indecisions--"We'll have a full indult." "No the French Bishops delayed it." "This is the right translation." "No, that is the literal translation, this is the actual meaning."

It tends to put my faith-life and my worship completely out of focus. I am so focused on the accidents that I miss entirely that God is present. I am so flustered and bothered by the noise in my head that I can't see God or engage in prayer in any fruitful way.

And so I happen upon this voice of calm and reason, this voice that says to me, at least in this passage and for this time, "There are many valid ways of being Catholic. Don't let precision destroy intimacy. God is present."

Thank you, Father Fox, even if it wasn't what you intended to say, God gave me a great consolation through your words.

(And if I have inadvertently offended any who call themselves traditionalists, please forgive me, I certainly was not trying to tar all with the same brush, and my anecdotal experiences may not be typical of an ordinary interaction.)

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Prayer for the Pope's Trip to Turkey


I had intended to post this prayer; however, Blog-by-the-Sea saved me the trouble.

Thank you.

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Fulton Sheen


I can't vouch for how good the site may or may not be, but here's a place where you can download Fulton Sheen talks.

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Must Read

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TSO's Spanning the Globe is an unusually good round-up in a column that is always top-notch. Go and see.

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Greeting in a Different Light

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From Evil Comes Evil


From, A Penitent Blogger, a useful reminder:

The scary truth is that evil actions always have evil results even when there was not evil intent or when there was an impeccable excuse.

It should therefore be no surprise that the world around us is piled high with the evil effects of innumerable evil deeds - ours and others. Both the deliberate and the well-intentioned evils of humanity have woven a web of evil consequences that a thousand years of altruism alone could not undo.

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Roman Catholic Search Engine

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Around St. Blog's category from November 2006.

Around St. Blog's: October 2006 is the previous archive.

Around St. Blog's: December 2006 is the next archive.

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