Saturday, January 31, 2009
"There are many passions. The most fundamental passion is love, aroused by the attraction of the good. Love causes a desire for the absent good and the hope of obtaining it; this movement finds completion in the pleasure and joy of the good possessed. The apprehension of evil causes hatred, aversion, and fear of the impending evil; this movement ends in sadness at some present evil, or in the anger that resists it." (CCC 1765)
Meeting Christ in the Liturgy offers a reflection for Dominica IV Post Epiphaniam.
Deus, qui nos in tantis periculis constitutos, pro humana scis fragilitate non posse subsistere: da nobis salutem mentis et corporis; ut ea, quae pro peccatis nostris patimur, te adjuvante, vincamus.
Per Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum Filium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.
(Art: BRUEGHEL I, Jan, Christ in the Storm on the Sea of Galilee, 1596. Oil on copper 26,6 x 35 cm Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid.)
Thursday, January 29, 2009
In the homily pronounced on the occasion of the solemn inauguration of my Pontificate, I said that it is the "explicit" duty of the Pastor "the call to unity", and, commenting upon the Gospel words regarding the miraculous catch of fish, I said, "although there were so many, the net was not torn"; I continued after these Gospel words, "Alas, beloved Lord, with sorrow we must now acknowledge that it has been torn!". And I continued, "But no – we must not be sad! Let us rejoice because of your promise, which does not disappoint, and let us do all we can to pursue the path towards the unity you have promised. Let us remember it in our prayer to the Lord, as we plead with him: yes, Lord, remember your promise. Grant that we may be one flock and one shepherd! Do not allow your net to be torn, help us to be servants of unity!"
Precisely in the accomplishment of this service of unity, which qualifies, in a specific way, my ministry as Successor of Peter, I decided, a few days ago, to grant the remission of the excommunication in which the four bishops ordained by Archbishop Lefebvre in 1988, without pontifical mandate, had incurred. I fulfilled this act of fatherly mercy because those prelates repeatedly manifested to me their deep suffering for the situation in which they found themselves. I hope that this gesture of mine will be followed by the solicitous effort by them to accomplish the ulterior steps necessary to accomplish full communion with the Church, thus testifying true fidelity and true recognition of the Magisterium and of the authority of the Pope and of the Second Vatican Council.
It should be noted well that, as our Holy Father's comments make clear, the lifting of an excommunication is not at the same time a recognition of full communion with the Church: he enumerates the necessary steps that these bishops must take before they enjoy once again full fraternity within the communion of Holy Mother Church.
Monday, January 26, 2009
And how many of these, who judge stridently the struggles of others with the pastoral teachings of Vatican II and the magnificent gesture of our Holy Father to advance Church unity, are themselves in dissent over the dogmatic pronouncement of His Holiness Pope Paul VI in Humanae Vitae that "every use of artificial contraception is a moral evil"?
Saturday, January 24, 2009
ut intres sub tectum meum,
sed tantum dic verbum,
et sanabitur anima mea."
"The Lord addresses an invitation to us, urging us to receive him in the sacrament of the Eucharist: 'Truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.' (Jn 6: 53)" (CCC 1384)
"To respond to this invitation we must prepare ourselves for so great and so holy a moment. St. Paul urges us to examine our conscience: 'Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself.' (1 Cor 11: 27-29) Anyone conscious of a grave sin must receive the sacrament of Reconciliation before coming to Communion." (CCC 1385)Meeting Christ in the Liturgy offers a reflection for Dominica III post Epiphaniam.
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Saturday, January 17, 2009
In the public life of Jesus Mary appears prominently; at the very beginning when at the marriage feast of Cana, moved with pity, she brought about by her intercession the beginning of the miracles of Jesus the Messiah (cf. John 2: 1-11). In the course of her Son's preaching she received the words whereby, in extolling a kingdom beyond the concerns and ties of flesh and blood, he declared blessed those who heard and kept the word of God (cf. Mk 3:35; Lk 11:27-28) as she was faithfully doing (cf. Lk 2:19; 51). Thus the Blessed Virgin advanced in her pilgrimage of faith, and faithfully preserved in her union with her Son unto the cross, where she stood (cf. Jn 19:25), in line with the divine plan, enduring with her only begotten Son the intensity of his passion, with his sacrifice, associating herself in her mother's heart, and lovingly consenting to the immolation of this victim which was born of her. Finally, she was given by the same Christ Jesus dying on the cross as a mother to his disciple, with these words: 'Woman, behold thy son' (Jn 19: 26-27)" (Second Vatican Council, Lumen gentium, 58).
Why are Mary's prayers so effective with God? The prayers of the saints are prayers of servants, whereas Mary's are a Mother's prayer, whence flows their efficacy and their authority; and since Jesus has immense love for his Mother, she cannot pray without being listened to...To understand Mary's great goodness, let us remember what the Gospel says...There was a shortage of wine, which naturally worried the married couple. No one asks the Blessed Virgin to intervene and request her Son to come to the rescue of the couple...; it stirs her to act as intercessor and ask her Son for the miracle, even though no one asks her to...If our Lady acted like this without being asked, what would she not have done if they actually asked her to intervene?" (St. Alphonsus Mary Ligouri, Sunday Sermons, 48).
Meeting Christ in the Liturgy offers a reflection for the Second Sunday after Epiphany.
(Art: Veronese, Paolo, Wedding Feast at Cana, 2nd third of 16th century, Musée du Louvre.)
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
Porta manes, et stella maris, succurre cadenti,
Surgere qui curat, populo: tu quae genuisti,
Natura mirante, tuum sanctum Genitorem,
Virgo prius ac posterius, Gabrielis ab ore
Sumens illud Ave, peccatorum miserere.
V. Post partum, Virgo, inviolata permansisti.
R. Dei Genitrix, intercede pro nobis.
Deus, qui salutis aeternae, beatae Mariae virginitate fecunda, humano generi praemia praestitisti: tribue, quaesumus; ut ipsam pro nobis intercedere sentiamus, per quam meruimus auctorem vitae suscipere,
Per Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum, Filium tuum. Amen.
- Antiphona finale B. Mariae Virginis usque ad diem 1 februarii inclusive, Breviarium Romanum.
(Art: Madonna by Raphael. )
Monday, January 12, 2009
Quoniam Dominus excelsus, terribilis: Rex magnus super omnem terram.
Subiecit populos nobis: et Gentes sub pedibus nostris.
Elegit nobis hereditatem suam: speciem Iacob, quam dilexit.
Ascendit Deus in iubilo: et Dominus in voce tubae.
Psallite Deo nostro, psallite: psallite Regi nostro, psallite.
Quoniam rex omnis terrae Deus: psallite sapienter.
Regnavit Deus super Gentes: Deus sedet super sedem sanctam suam.
Principes populorum congregati sunt cum Deo Abraham: quoniam dii fortes terrae vehementer elevati sunt.
-- Psalmus 46, Feria II Ad Laudes, Breviarium Romanum
(Photo: The Holy Father offers the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass ad orientem in the Sixtine Chapel, the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord, 2009. Thanks to Rorate Caeli.)
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Laetatus sum in his, quae dicta sunt mihi:
In domum Domini ibimus.
Stantes erant pedes nostri, in atriis tuis, Ierusalem.
Ierusalem, quae aedificatur ut civitas: cuius participatio eius in idipsum.
Illuc enim ascenderunt tribus, tribus Domini: testimonium Israel ad confitendum nomini Domini.
Quia illic sederunt sedes in iudicio, sedes super domum David.
Rogate quae ad pacem sunt Ierusalem: et abundantia diligentibus te:
Fiat pax in virtute tua: et abundantia in turribus tuis.
Propter fratres meos, et proximos meos, loquebar pacem de te:
Propter domum Domini Dei nostri, quaesivi bona tibi.
-- Psalmus 121, Feria secunda ad Vesperas, Breviarium Romanum.
Friday, January 9, 2009
Confusi sunt, et erubuerunt omnes: simul abierunt in confusione fabricatores errorum.
"Israel salvatus est in Domino salute aeterna: non confundemini, et non erubescetis usque in saeculum saeculi.
Quia haec dicit Dominus creans caelos, ipse Deus formans terram, et faciens eam, ipse plastes eius:
Non in vanum creavit eam, ut habitaretur, formavit eam: Ego Dominus, et non est alius.
Non in abscondito locutus sum, in loco terrae tenebroso:
Non dixi semini Iacob frustra: Quaerite me: ego Dominus loquens iustitiam, annuntians recta.
Congregamini, et venite, et accedite simul qui salvati estis ex Gentibus:
Nescierunt qui levant lignum sculpturae suae, et rogant deum non salvantem.
Annuntiate, et venite, et consiliamini simul: Quis auditum fecit hoc ab initio, ex tunc praedixit illud?
Numquid non ego Dominus, et non est ultra Deus absque me? Deus iustus et salvans non est praeter me.
Convertimini ad me, et salvi eritis, omnes fines terrae: quia ego Deus, et non est alius.
In memetipso iuravi, egredietur de ore meo iustitiae verbum, et non revertetur:
"Quia mihi curvabunt omnia genu,
"et iurabit omnis lingua.
Ergo in Domino, dicet, meae sunt iustitiae et imperium: ad eum venient, et confundentur omnes qui repugnant ei.
In Domino iustificabitur et laudabitur omne semen Israel."
-- Canticum Isaiae 45:15-26, Feria sexta ad laudes I, Breviarium Romanum
Monday, January 5, 2009
"I just wanted to comment that one of my most dearly loved hymns is the Palestrina setting of 'Jesu, Rex Admirabilis'! It was sung at my first solemn Mass. Unfortunately, on the ship we can't open audio/video files from the internet (as you no doubt remember)--at least it takes a geological era for them to download. So, if you have the time--I know you have the know-how--could you send me an email with an audio recording (WMP type file) of 'Jesu, Rex Admirabilis'? Please? By the way, I was unable to get pictures of the Sunday sung Mass.
God bless, keep up the good work of your blog!
Do any of our BrevRom readers know how to make the wmp file Father Johnson is requesting? Yours truly remains in many ways technologically challenged and would be grateful for the assist. Also, check again for more Sunday liturgy photos coming soon,we hope, from USS TR once certain technological impediments, such as dying camera batteries, are removed.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
...quod est super omne nomen, Venite adoremus.
Palestrina - "Jesu, rex admirabilis" - Gardiner
Psalmus 8 
8:1 (in finem pro torcularibus psalmus David)
8:2 Domine Dominus noster quam admirabile est nomen tuum in universa terra quoniam elevata est magnificentia tua super caelos
8:3 Ex ore infantium et lactantium perfecisti laudem propter inimicos tuos ut destruas inimicum et ultorem
8:4 Quoniam videbo caelos tuos; opera digitorum tuorum lunam et stellas quae tu fundasti
8:5 Quid est homo quod memor es eius aut filius hominis quoniam visitas eum
8:6 Minuisti eum paulo minus ab angelis gloria et honore coronasti eum
8:7 Et constituisti eum super opera manuum tuarum
8:8 Omnia subiecisti sub pedibus eius oves et boves universas insuper et pecora campi
8:9 Volucres caeli et pisces maris qui perambulant semitas maris
8:10 Domine Dominus noster quam admirabile est nomen tuum in universa terra
Deus, qui unigenitum Filium tuum constituisti humani generis Salvatorem, et Jesum vocari jussisti: concede propitius; ut cujus sanctum nomen veneramur in terris, ejus quoque aspectu perfruamur in coelis.
Per eumdem Dominum nostrum Iesum Christum Filium tuum, qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum. Amen.
Heinrich Schutz - "O Jesu, Nomen Dulce" - Andreas Scholl
Meeting Christ in the Liturgy offers a reflection for the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus.
(Art: Saint Bernardino of Siena, Vincenzo Foppa about 1495/1500. Oil on panel, 148.9 x 57 cm. Washington, National Gallery of Art. Saint Berdardino promoted devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus.)
Saturday, January 3, 2009
The Roman style chasuble is a Gammarelli creation, obtained in vintage condition from a vendor in California. The fabric is called mille fiori, or "a thousand flowers". Another liturgical detail he shares, passed on to him through the kindness of Don Massimo Moroncelli, a Roman friend, is the custom of using only white vestments for the Christmas season with the exception of Epiphany, for which gold is used as for for Easter and Ascension. He informs that if one were to observe photos of Pius XII and others at Christmas, one will find them always garbed in white vestments.
Grazie mille, Fr. Johnson. We pray for fair winds and following seas for you and all our military at sea.
The Reverend Charles Johnson, Navy chaplain, celebrates the liturgy of the Feast of Saint John the Apostle aboard the aircraft carrier USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN 71). Note the Gesu Bambino placed near the altar crucifix.
A statue of Our Lady is placed to the left of the altar for the celebration of Holy Mass. A US Navy Sailor serves as acolyte.
Information about the provenance and make of Father Johnson's Roman vestments is available here.
Larger Navy ships such as aircraft carriers usually have a dedicated chapel space which must be maintained as a "neutral", or non-denominational, space when not in use by a particular religious group in order to better facilitate the beliefs of all. The materials necessary for the celebration of the liturgy are stored away to be set up for each Holy Mass and then taken down again afterward.
Thursday, January 1, 2009
-- Antiphona 2, Ad Laudes, Octava Nativitatis Domini
Deus, qui salutis aeternae, beatae Mariae virginitate foecunda, humano generi praemia praestitisti: tribue quaesumus; ut ipsam pro nobis intercedere sentiamus, per quam meriumus auctorem vitae suscipere, Dominum nostrum Jesum Christum Filium tuum:
Qui tecum vivit et regnat in unitate Spiritus Sancti, Deus, per omnia saecula saeculorum.
(Art: Bartolome Estaban Murillo, Virgin and Child)