Wishing you all a happy and holy Easter.
Christ is risen! He is risen indeed! Alleluia! Alleluia!
|Girls are perfectly capable of active participation in the Mass without special treatment|
Is my ability to pray somehow hampered by not being singled out, and told how special I am? (Oooooh, look, I've put you wimmin ahead of the 'brothers', how right on is that? Bet you feel special now."). The former Oxbridge English tutor in me rankles at the sub-1960's hippy-doodle-dandy sound of "sisters and brothers". Is there a woman, anywhere, who feels that her dignity is somehow compromised by being included in the brotherhood of man signalled by "pray brethren"? Do those celebrants who butcher the liturgy in the name of inclusivity truly believe that women are incapable of meaningful communication with Our Lord unless they're condescended to?
So, dear priests and bishops - Do the red, say the black. Please. But if you do choose to vandalise the sacred liturgy, please have the respect not to do it in my name.
There has been a flurry of traffic to my blog from google searches about Pope Francis in the few hours since his election was announced. I thought it interesting that two dominant patterns emerge:
I think the truth is that as Pope Francis is unknown to most of us, many people are apprehensive about what the future may bring. The anxiety appears to be most acute among those who feel that their celebration of the liturgy may be under threat. The most sensible thing to do is to ignore the hysteria in the blogosphere and pray for our new Pope, for Holy Mother Church, for our priests and our bishops and for ourselves. I should take my own advice: I've been driving my husband mad with incessant pacing around the house, punctuated by web searches followed by more pacing throughout the evening and into the small hours.
Really, this anxiety is misplaced. The reform of the reform has gained its own momentum: think about the growth in traditional masses, communities and clergy in the last eight years. There is no reason to assume that anything will change with regard to Summorum pontificum, and so equally there is no reason to assume that the brick by brick reform will not continue to gain momentum. On the other hand, the former Cardinal Bergoglio has a track record as a staunch defender of natural law, having opposed homosexual "marriage", adoption of children by same sex couples, and abortion. He has shown that he is not afraid to confront secular authorities where moral issues are at stake. With homosexual "marriage" being promoted across the planet, and abortion being redefined as a human "right" by NGOs whist at the same time German Bishops approve the morning after pill, it could be that Pope Francis is a truly inspired choice, and that his own choice of name reflects his understanding of the enormity of the task ahead.
UPDATE: according to Holy Souls Hermitage, as Cardinal Bergoglio, Pope Francis promoted the Traditional Latin Mass immediately the Publication of Summorum Pontificum. Here's a link to a map showing locations of parishes with Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman rite in Argentina.
We love you Holy Father!
I feel incredibly grateful for improvements in technology nd new media which have allowed me to follow events today despite being away from home running errands. I'm writing this from my van in a shopping center car park. Last time I had to rely on BBC radio which was galling as the coverage was so hostile.
I know little about former Cardinal Bergoglio, now our Holy Father Pope Francis I, other than the headlines that he's Argentinian and that he's a Jesuit. I'm assuming thst he's an old-style Jesuit rsther than the modern sort, and that he won't be requesting that Britain hand the Falklands over to Argentina.
More to the point, I was moved by his humility in asking the crowds to pray for him and with him before he gave his urbi et orbi blessing: "Before I bless you all as the new Pope... I ask that you pray to The Lord to bless me". Didn't Pope Emeritis Benedict XVI do this as well? I also loved the fact that he gave the Apostolic blessing with plenary indulgence to anyone following through media as well as to those physically there: a genuine spiritual benefit of technological advance! It was wonderful to pray along with our new Holy Father and the crowds in St Peter's Square.
Oh - and when I phoned home to tell the children the news, I could barely hear a thing over the ringing of the ship's bell outside our back door. I'm reliably informed that the flag was hoisted and suitably pro-Papa songs and hymns sung a haute voix outside. Several marches around the garden to Full in the Panting Heart of Rome ("God Bless Our Pope!") and Faith of Our Fathers. Anyone within a mile or so's radius will have been made aware of the good news.
Habemus Papam! It feels like we waited ages to hear those words: God bless Pope Francis!
The ever-moving smokestack found itself under Our Lady's watchful eye this evening, and yes, it's white!
...yes there will eventually be white smoke. Although conclaves have lasted several years in the past, I'm rather hoping that we'll have a Holy Father to guide us within a matter of days, if not hours. I'm sure that I'm not alone in this.
...as for the children, well, they've planned a procession involving much joyful noise - bell ringing and singing. They've decided on a "running order" for songs and hymns for their celebration, that we mere grown ups are not permitted to be privy to until the actual event.
I don't have the slightest idea who our next Holy Father will be, but I'd place a handsome wager on "Full In The Panting Heart of Rome" with a rousing chorus of "God Bless Our Pope" being on the children's celebration programme. And thinking about it, that is very much the way things ought to be.
... with a backdrop of the Palais des Papes in Avignon.
It's never too late to pray the novena prayers for the election of a Good and Holy Pope...
We're rather hoping that we're granted our new Pope tomorrow because it's our eldest son's 11th birthday and, in his words, how cool would that be?
Keep praying... not for the Pope that we deserve, and but for the Pope that Holy Mother Church needs.
... no Pope today (but the children did have fun making the chimney!)
Check back here after each conclave session for the most reliable unofficial Sistine-style smokestack made and maintained by four trainee Papal Ninjas aged 10and under outside Rome. Now that's saying something!
Also not to be missed: grand plans to hoist the Papal flag with a ceremonial ringing of the (large, loud ship's) bell when we eventually have white smoke. We're sure that the neighbours will love it.
|Our Lady's crown|
|Crowning Our Lady's statue|
|Oh Fatima, farewell...|