In spite of all the Church Scandal, life goes on. How was your week? Here are a few highlights from mine.
I was spoiled rotten on Thanksgiving Day. I barely had to make anything – just frog-eye salad. And we feasted like kings and drank good wine. God is very good to us. And I have the best in-laws ever.
The other day The Eldest was dancing around with Little Sister when, SMACK! Little Sister’s eye met a chair. Grandma added purple eye shadow to the other eye to balance things out. And then we took a picture of her because she’s still so cute. Can you guess which eye is injured and which is fake?
3. The 2019 Calendars from Tan Publishing are out. Last year they had a calendar featuring monks brewing beer and drinking wine. For example, here’s this month’s picture from 2018:
Can you read the quotation in the bottom righthand corner? It’s a Medieval German saying. “Drink wine, and you will sleep well. Sleep, and you will not sin. Avoid sin, and you will be saved. Ergo, drink wine and be saved.” Hilarious.
Anyway, this year I’ve noticed that Tan has a 2019 calendar titled, Defending Christendom. You bet I’m going to order it. Click HERE to see it at Tan.
4. As yesterday was Black Friday, I will offer a gift idea for lego-loving children. A friend of mine sent me a link to this. It’s the Last Supper built with legos. We don’t own it, but we do own this one, which is Fr. Leopold’s Mass, and it’s great.
If any of you do own the Last Supper lego kit, drop a line below in the comments. I’d like to hear if it’s a good set.
5. And finally, do you live anywhere near the Bismarck/Mandan metropolitan area? If so, come experience the Mass of the Ages, otherwise known at the Traditional Latin Mass, this Sunday at Christ the King Catholic Church in Mandan, ND, at 11:30am. I’d love to meet you!
The other day, well, I mean the other month, my husband made a few drinks. I meant to share them with you then, but I forgot because I was busy. So, I’ll share them today because they’re good, and we’re celebrating the end of a successful Hunting Season.
Now I’d like to share a photo of my husband’s dead deer too, but there isn’t one. You see, he had a Doe Tag and according to him, “Does are hardly worth taking photos of.” So not only will there be no photo of him with his deer, but there will of course be no antlers to mount on the garage walls. The boys were seriously disappointed. One can never have too many antlers on one’s walls apparently.
Brandy Alexander & a Sidecar
On to drinks. As I said, we’re celebrating a swift end to the Hunting Season, and I’d like to highlight two of our favorites: a Brandy Alexander and a Sidecar.
The drink on the left is a Brandy Alexander. My husband and I began drinking these after reading Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited, in honor of Anthony Blanche. Those of you who have read the book or watched the (good) version of the movie (with Jeremy Irons) know what we’re talking about. There’s a scene wherein Anthony Blanche downs three of them in a row, which is a bit reckless, no?
Normally a Brandy Alexander is made with cream, but as we never have any on hand, my husband makes them with whole milk, which of course is not as creamy, but still good.
Equal parts Brandy, Creme de Cocoa, and Cream
Sidecars are way too strong for me, but my husband insists that they’re classic and tasteful. I’d probably be rather drunk if I attempted one. Nevertheless, here’s how they’re made.
3 parts brandy, 1 part lemon, 1 part triple sec
The Traditional Latin Mass
A good friend of mine sent me an article written by Jake Neu and published in Crisis Magazine this morning. It’s excellent. (Click HERE for it.) It’s also interesting that more and more people are choosing to attend the TLM.
A big Thank You to Jake Neu. Your sentiments are mine as well.
This last week my family and I moved to a new home. Deo gratias.
As you can imagine, I am busy unpacking.
So today I offer 3 articles that you should read. They all come from New Liturgical Movement. And if you have a spare minute, do yourself a favor and read one of them right now.
Here they are:
I’m sick of ugly buildings. Are you? David Clayton spells it out for us HERE. And I’ve added two photos for your contemplation.
2. Do you have sons? If they are discerning a vocation to the priesthood, what kind of seminary would you have them attend? Dr. Kwasniewski writes about this by showing different vocational videos. One is demanding and requires sacrifice; the other is wishy-washy and features happy-go-lucky seminarians and cardinals. Click HERE for it.
3. Why, oh why, can’t we get this right at Mass? Music matters. Music becomes a part of us, and if we continually fill ourselves with emotional schmaltzy jingles, then that’s what we’ll become.
Cardinal Sarah gets it. You should just read what he writes HERE about Gregorian Chant. My husband has been reading this article out loud to the children (well, and me too) at supper.
You might also consider buying both of Sarah’s books.
And one more thing. An invite.
If you happen to be in the Bismarck/Mandan area, and would like to experience the Mass of the Ages, come to Christ the King Catholic Church this Sunday, October 28, at 11:30am.
Fr. Nick Schneider will offer the Extraordinary Form the Mass. You know, the Mass that St. Maximillian Kolbe celebrated. The Mass that St. Thomas Aquinas wrote about. The Mass that St. Therese the Little Flower loved.
And there’s a potluck afterwards, if you want to stay and visit. I’d love to meet you.
How was your week? Here are a few highlights from mine:
We’re back into another academic year. Two of our children are attending a Catholic Montessori School, three are being homeschooled, and the remaining toddler and baby are just. plain. busy. How do I get it all done?
With a lot of grace and a Good Schedule. I haven’t quite finished tweaking my new schedule, but when I do, I’ll put it out there for you glance at. Sometimes it helpful to see what other mothers are doing.
I saw my first weasel the other day. It was running across our backyard and made for a group of pine trees. The thing that really stood out was it’s black-tipped tail. I wish I could have snapped a picture of it.
4. My twin boys love serving the Traditional Latin Mass. Last Sunday I snapped a shot of them holding the torches during the Eucharistic Prayer. (I know, I know, I should have been praying and not grabbing my phone. But this just isn’t something one gets to see every day. In fact, most people never get to see a TLM around here.)
5. Our house finally sold! If everything goes well – inspection, etc. – we’ll be moving in October. We’re very excited about this, as we found a beautiful place to move to that will fit our large family and our large van. Miracle.
There’s some crazy stuff in the Old Calendar that is just interesting to learn about. My husband is forever telling me this. (By Old Calendar I mean those things connected to the Traditional Latin Mass.)
For example, this coming Sunday is called Passion Sunday. It always falls on the Sunday immediately before Palm Sunday and serves to move our thoughts toward the Passion and death of Christ. (In the New Calendar, this Sunday is called the Fifth Sunday of Lent.)
Passion Sunday is also Judica Sunday
Now I know that the prayers of the Mass are supposed to reflect the liturgical season the Church is observing, but there’s some real beauty and depth to be found in the prayers of the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) that I’ve never noticed before. I’ll give you one example.
On Passion Sunday, Psalm 42 is highlighted in the Introit and pleadingly states,
“Judge me, O God, and distinguish my cause from the nation that is not holy: deliver me from the unjust and deceitful man: for Thou art God my strength.”
If you’ll remember in the TLM, Psalm 42 is also prayed every Sunday during the Prayers at the Foot of the Altar, but on Passion Sunday it’s omitted and will be until Easter Sunday. This is something like the Gloria. Both are omitted because they are associated with the Paschal joy of the Risen Christ.
In other words, we have this stripping away of Pascal references in order to sharpen our awareness of Christ’s Passion, which is why we refer to these final two weeks of Lent as Passiontide.
Sometimes this Sunday is also called “Judica Sunday.” Judica being Latin for the opening word of Psalm 42, “Judge.”
It’s amazing how it all comes together. I’ve got a lot to learn.
In any case, my children always look forward to Passion Sunday, for my family likes to observe a unique tradition that all churches used to do, and many still do. We veil our images with purple cloth.
This tradition began sometime in the ninth century to reflect the readings of the TLM. For example, the Gospel for Passion Sunday is always John 8 wherein the Jews take up stones to cast at Jesus, but he mysteriously passes through the crowd unseen and then hides. Therefore, the veiling of images reminds us that Christ’s Divinity was hidden at the time of His Passion and death.
Think about that for a minute. Again, it’s astounding how all these things come together. Of course His Divinity was hidden! Otherwise everyone would have believed, not just that centurion at the foot of the cross.
Secondly, veiling also strips us of visual stimuli. Throughout the year we may become accustomed to looking at and praying with our crucifixes and icons, and so taking them away for a time helps us paradoxically to become more aware of them.
So if you’ve never done it before, try veiling a couple of your images. It’s pretty easy to do. I just bought a yard of purple cloth at Hobby Lobby and cut it into squares. I’ve also heard of families using purple tissue paper though.
In the Bismarck diocese, a Traditional Latin Mass will be celebrated this weekend, March 18th, at 11:30am at Christ the King Catholic Church in Mandan. Come experience Passion Sunday as it was through the ages!
My husband is a bit of a nerd when it comes to reading things about the old Mass. You know what I’m talking about, right? The Traditional Latin Mass, the Extraordinary Form, the Usus Antiquior, the Tridentine Mass, the Mass of Pius V…it’s got so many names, I can’t keep it straight.
He’s always yakking about people I don’t know too, like Dr. Peter Kwasniewski. Except that no one can pronounce this guy’s last name, so Peter is affectionately referred to as “Peter K” in our household, which is confusing to others, because then most people think we mean Peter Kreeft.
As an aside, I actually had the nerve to ask Dr. Kwasniewski how to pronounce his last name, and he graciously, phonically spelled it out for me as follows: “Kwash-nee-ev-ski.”
In any case, since I can’t help but to eventually be interested in things that my husband chatters on about, I decided to read Kwasniewski’s book, Noble Beauty, Transcendent Holiness. After all, I had come across this man many times, as he writes for the New Liturgical Movement, a blog that I enjoy perusing, even if I don’t understand half of what I read. (New Liturgical Movement is linked on my sidebar, if you’re curious.)
Well, let me tell you, I just finished reading this book, and it’s a gem. A breath of fresh air. Chock-full of stuff I never thought about before. For example, have you ever thought of having a Marian receptivity to the Mass? I haven’t, and there’s a whole chapter on this, and it’s excellent.
So, if you’d like a challenge and are interested in things that our culture considers backwards and foolish, I recommend this book. It’s really worth it. And furthermore, to give you a sample of just what’s in this book, I’ll mention a few things that I learned below.
What did I Learn From Noble Beauty, Transcendent Holiness?
So, the name thing. What to call this old Mass, that is foreign to most of us and has twenty different names? This is downright confusing to us amateurs, just trying to figure things out. Well, Kwasniewski advises us not to get caught up in terminology wars. He states, “The official documents of the Church use multiple names…each name conveys something important that the other names do not convey.”
In my words, maybe all these names for the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) are like all the names we have for the Holy Spirit: Paraclete, Advocate, Counselor, Holy Ghost. They are all important and serve to reveal something about the third Person of the Trinity. We use different names for different occasions. It must be the same for the TLM too, and I’m relieved that I don’t have to worry about it anymore.
The second thing I learned from reading Kwasniewski’s book is that I’m really not as backwards and foolish as I thought for preferring the TLM over the New Mass. Kwasniewski states, “Pope Benedict XVI established equal canonical rights for the two “forms” of the Roman Rite.” It’s perfectly legitimate to have a preference.
When I read that, I was reminded of Pope Benedict’s somewhat well known quotation about the TLM, which Kwasniewski explains in his book, and states as follows:
“What earlier generations held as sacred, remains sacred and great for us too, and it cannot be all of a sudden entirely forbidden or even considered harmful. It behooves all of us to preserve the riches which have developed in the Church’s faith and prayer, and to give them their proper place.” Pope Benedict XVI.
In other words, it’s a good thing to want to know what it was like for the vast majority of people in the history of the Church the pray the Mass. Just how did St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Francis of Assisi, and my favorite, St. Therese the Little Flower, experience the Mass? It was the TLM that formed these great saints after all.
But in the end, however, it has not easy for me to learn about the TLM, as I’m fairly new to it and this stuff takes time–indeed a lifetime–to learn about, especially if one lives in area where the TLM is not readily available. I was comforted, in fact, when Kwasniewski compares it all to the call of Abram out of Ur to Canaan. “It prompts the development of new faculties of seeing and hearing; it requires an exodus from our surroundings of pop culture and intellectual fashion; it calls us to a strange land, like Abram being summoned from Ur to Canaan.”
Yes, I can understand that. It’s unsettling to walk into a strange land–the strange land of the Traditional Latin Mass. But for me, anyway, it’s been worth it. And Noble Beauty, Transcendent Holiness has been a great blessing and a help.
Would you like to experience this Mass of Ages? Come and see.
In the Bismarck area, Fr. Nick Schneider offers the TLM once a month at Christ the King Catholic Church in Mandan at 11:30am. The next one will be Sunday, February 25th.
There is also a Facebook page for the Latin Mass community. Click HERE for that.
And in the meantime, pick up Dr. Kwasniewski’s book, Noble Beauty, Transcendent Holiness.