My friend Andrew from St. Luke’s Gallery sent me something really awesome today.
It turns out that Philadelphia really loves their St. Rita…
I have never been inside this particular church in the City of Brotherly Love. However, I have seen the inside of this church many times. You may have as well. The interior was used in the 1999 movie The Sixth Sense.
Saintly shout-outs aside, I hope you all had a blessed Passion Sunday. It is most definitely NOT too late to ratchet up your Lenten disciplines. Two weeks left, friends. With April 3rd now just a week away, we need to do all the fasting we can. Let’s get at it.
Saturday March 25, 2023 is the First Class Feast of the Annunciation (Solemnity for those of you still following along with the 1983 home edition). This is the day when we commemorate the moment when the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity took on our flesh and truly “dwelt among us”, as St. John’s Gospel tells us. In the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Fairest of our Race – He Who IS Truth became man by becoming her little boy.
Think about that incredible, indescribable beauty! I think about it at least three times a day when I pray the Angelus. Side note: if you aren’t praying the Angelus, you need to commit to this beautiful prayer. Fr. Ripperger tells us that demonic attack seems to almost disappear when a person commits to commemorating the Incarnation at 6, noon and 6 every day through this prayer.
As I was thumbing through pictures on my phone looking for an appropriate shot for this post, I came across something most interesting. Take a look…
A few years ago I stopped in to the shrine church that had been built under the direction of the saintly Mother Angelica, the foundress of EWTN. Full disclosure, there was a sign nearby strictly forbidding photography. Whoops, huh? “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned…” It’s just that I had a feeling I’d need to use this image one day.
What I did not even catch until now was her full name. She who had been known to the world as – wait for it – RITA Rizzo had taken the name Mary Angelica of the Annunciation! So not only does my favorite saint and patroness, St. Rita, make another appearance but also Mother’s name was in honor of the feast we celebrate today.
And speaking of Mother, I wonder what she would think of the state of the world and of the Church today. I will never forget her “I’m tired” monologue from 1993. I’m embedding it below.
Introduced by a much younger future-Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Mother unleashes on everything wrong at that time. She missed a mark here and there especially when she refers to “those beautiful documents of Vatican II” but I think we can all admit to having been suckered on that front. The documents – presumably the four constitutions – are loaded to the gills with ambiguity at best. Nonetheless, her assessment of the nonsense and her own no-nonsense approach in righteously letting them have it inspire me daily.
Yes, Mother, I’m tired too. But that one event in history, that one instant when light eternal became flesh and blood, when the Most Pure Virgin uttered the words of ultimate humility and thus perfect sanctity – “Ecce, ancilla Domini, FIAT mihi secundum tuum”, “Behold, the handmaid of the Lord, Be it done unto me according to thy word” – reassure me that Truth is knowable and that there is always hope.
Let it be done to me, O Lord, according to Thy Will!
O Mary conceived without sun, pray for us who have recourse to thee!
On the most recent Barnhardt Podcast, Ann made mention of a fact that sometimes strikes me. We – as in the trad Catholic movement who are not Trad Inc. – are indeed a very minuscule group in number. There simply aren’t that many of us. This is humbling on one hand because we recognize we don’t really have much “power”. On the other hand, it’s amazing that the powers that be are hellbent on destroying us. As Miss B. points out, that is because it is Satan who is in the driver’s seat on that plan of destruction.
Even outside the smaller circle of traditional Catholicism, we fall into the wider net of people who are simply not sheep. We do not and have not fallen to the zeitgeist. We never bought into the Coof culture and we sure as hell didn’t take the jab. There are others outside of our small circle who also fall into that wider circle.
Tonight I bumped into one. I happened to be out with a sister who is in town and we stumbled across a gentleman playing poker with a friend of his. And his shirt said it all…
We struck up a conversation as only two like minded people can. “We have to tell the world that shit is poison. How can they be so dumb?” he said to me. “I’m never getting it and I hope even one person sees this and learns something,” he said.
No jab for me. Amen.
St Dymphna, patroness of the mentally I’ll, pray for us!
The novena is simply a series of prayers already familiar to most readers of these pages – a Hail Holy Queen, Memorare, Hail Mary, etc., with a petition prayer inserted in the middle. It is simple to pray and easy to remember. This is good because the novena is prayed every day for nine months between the Annunciation and Christmas. In other words, the focus of this novena is to keep watch the Blessed Mother during her expectancy. Anyone who has ever awaited the joyful arrival of his or her own child knows that these nine months are among the most joyful, anticipatory, impatient, and prayerful. The petitioner is to pray for three specific intentions. When I first heard of this novena, I was told by the priest who mentioned it that 1) I should not be surprised if God grants to me my intentions even before the novena is prayed and 2) that this novena is very efficacious. I prayed at that time for my first job in school administration. I began on March 25th, got a lead on a job on the 26th, interviewed on the 29th, and was hired as a vice principal by mid-April. Ultimately, I discovered that this was not the job for me but I did learn many valuable lessons from that experience. My point is that this novena is no joke.
I spent the day traveling back to Texas from Northern Virginia. Kept my prayers up all day. While transiting through Memphis (which apparently exists as an airport for FedEx with a few gates left over for poor schlubs like me trying to get home, I remembered that the Incarnation Novena will begin this upcoming Saturday.
I will dig up the best translation of those prayers with an explanation to post hence. This one is a great devotion that requires a lot of patience as it is prayed daily over nine months.
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