Saturday, March 21, 2009

Lampooning Liberals

I have to give a heads up to this post by Diogenes of CWN fame. It made my morning and might make yours as well.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Rossini and Pius IX

One of my fav composers is Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868) as seen above. Its amazing apart from Vivaldi how much of his music is now "hold Music". I stumbled upon a cantata he wrote in praise of Pope Pius IX as you can see below.

I found this really interesting because I always thought that Rossini was what we would call now a "liberal" whilst Pius was ultra-conservative. His primary works that he is remembered for was Vatican I which defined Papal Infallability and his "Syllabus of Errors" where he condemned just about everything that was going on in modern Europe at the time. In fact British commentators at the time said that the Italians called him "Pio nono" because everything was a "NO-NO".

Putting that all aside, I'm more interested in Pius' personal habits. For instance he was the last pope that we know of who was a chain smoker, and an Italian perfume maker recently reconstructed his personal deoderant. (The Papacy is so interesting!!).

Anyway I hope our readership enjoys the cantata, with visuals from the Pius IX museum and very mid-19th century type of music, with lots of ornamentation.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

San Trinita in Rome

There is a good television report on San Trinita dei Pellegrini, the FSSP parish in Rome. I went to Sunday Mass at their former location at San Gregorio de Muratorio a few months before they made the move to San Trinita.

Happily (and the reason for the note) is that they have strong Australian links, with Fr Joseph Kramer from Melbourne being the parish priest and Australian priests and seminarians (and a certain Cardinal) helping out from time to time.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Santa Maria in Domnica

For those of you who follow the round of Stational Churches during Lent you will notice that the stational church for the Second Sunday of Lent is the Stational Church of Santa Maria in Domnica.

(Photo:Nina Aldin Thune)

I visited this charming little church on an Autumn morning in Rome, after walking up the Clivus Scauri, past where Pope Gregory the Great lived. The term "Dominca" it is suggested comes from the term dominica sotto praedia namely, that the church was sited in an area of Imperial dependence. Archaeologists have found that this church, founded upon an earlier one, was connected to a diaconal hall. These halls were set up after the collapse of the Roman Empire after the church took over the distribution of the corn "dole". This task was managed by the deacons.

At the end of the papal struggle against the Iconoclasts, Pope Pascal II (pontificate 817-824AD)built this church, which features for the first time Our Lady holding the child Jesus as a central icon in the apse.

You can see Pope Pascal II, as the small figure (about the same size as Jesus) kneeling at the foot of Mary touching her foot in homage. Note the square halo around the Pope, indicating that the mosaic was undertaken in his lifetime.

For those of you with an interest in how churches are oriented. This one is oriented in the same way as St John Lateran and St Peters, with the apse at the western end and the doors at the East. The celebrant would therefore celebrate facing the congregation. Presumably the Altar originally had a ciborium, but it looks about 18th century to me. Cardinal de Medici (later Pope Leo X) arranged a major makeover in the early 1500s (Medici lions all over the place on the outside) and the sanctuary had a makeover in the 1950s.
This church is the titular church of H.E. Cardinal William Levada, Prefect of the Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith. I hope that he gets a chance often to celebrate Mass here.

Pontifical Vespers with Bp Elliott

Subsequent to Bishop Elliott's talk we processed to St Aloysius Church for Pontifical Vespers at the Faldstool. You can see pictures of that event here

Bp Peter Elliott Address

In January 2008, Bishop Peter Elliott gave a lecture at the Guild of St Lawrence conference. I have now worked out how to post this up on this blog so that you can all enjoy and be informed. Not that it takes me this long but it was originally to be hosted on another site.

Fr Glen Tattersall of the Extraordinary Form Mass community hosted the conference and he introduces His Lordship.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

An apology for the lack of apologia...

Lest anyone was concerned about why I haven't posted on Justin Martyr yet, I'm currently without a phoneline or internet at home due to a snapped telegraph line. I promise the post as soon as I get access again, and in the meantime will be sending prayers to our patron saint of telecommunications, the Archangel Gabriel, that Telstra will come and fix things up soon!

Monday, March 02, 2009

On Holy Communion

Here is a liturgical question that has been perplexing me:

N 162 of the Australian edition of the General Instruction on the Roman Missal states:

162. The priest may be assisted in the distribution of Communion by other priests who happen to be present. If such priests are not present and there is a very large number of communicants, the priest may call upon extraordinary ministers to assist him, i.e., duly instituted acolytes or even other faithful who have been deputed for this purpose.97 In case of necessity, the priest may depute suitable faithful for this single occasion.98 These ministers should not approach the altar before the priest has received Communion, and they are always to receive from the hands of the priest celebrant the vessel containing either species of the Most Holy Eucharist for distribution to the faithful.

Of course we do not see this in our churches. What we actually see refers more to a diocesan instruction: Special Ministers of Communion Archdiocese of Brisbane 1982, revised 1993:

The ministers come to the altar after the sign of peace. After the Lamb of God, the priest gives communion to the ministers —first the bread and then the cup. The priest and the communion ministers then take the eucharist to the people according to the local custom. (Alternatively, ministers may receive communion after they have ministered to the assembly — a stronger sign of their service.)

Note that the current diocesan instruction predates Redemptionis Sacramentum and therefore has the incorrect terminology to start with.

Considering that the GIRM was promulgated in May 2007, how come it is taking so long for the legislated practices to come into line? Or did the bishops sign up to something that they were not going to follow anyway? Just a thought as I hate seeing the lay people in their ordinary clothes looking like concelebrants, when the communion liturgy has still a long way to go.