Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Ad Multos Annos Cardinal Burke

To His Eminence, Raymond Leo, Cardinal Burke, Cardinal Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, Cardinal Deacon of S. Agata dei Goti and son of Cork, we wish our most heartfelt good wishes for his birthday and many more of them.

Sunday, 14 September 2014

'The Exaltation of Dear Christ's Cross'

September 14 is the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, which the 12th-century calendarist, Marianus O'Gorman, describes as 'the Exaltation of dear Christ's Cross, the great, pure, diademed standard'. Father John Ryan, in his classic work on Irish monasticism, has written of the use of the sign of the cross by the Irish monastic saints:

To invoke the divine aid against these evil powers the sign of the cross was in constant use. St. Columban, during his meditations in the woods near Luxeuil put that holy sign on his forehead frequently as a form of armour. His monks did the same whenever they left the monastery. Columban's successor at Luxeuil, the abbot Athala, had a cross erected outside his cell, so that when going out or returning he could lay his hand upon it before putting the sign of salvation upon his brow. A torch when lighted by a junior monk had to be handed to a senior to be thus blessed, and spoons when used at table had to be treated similarly by the brethern. In Iona the same custom prevailed; for it is recorded that St Columcille was displeased when the holy sign was not placed on a milk vessel (Adamnan ii, 16). The 'signum salutare' might be placed on tools and used for various pious purposes. When his uncle Ernan died suddenly on the way from the harbour to the monastery, a cross was raised on the spot where life failed him and another on the spot where Columcille stood awaiting his approach. Another cross, fixed securely in a large millstone, was erected in the place where the old white horse wept for the saint's approaching end just before his death. Caesarius of Arles shows that the practice of signing oneself with the sign of the cross was very common in Gaul. St. Patrick made the sign of the cross upon himself a hundred times during the day and night, and never passed a cross upon the wayside without alighting from his chariot and spending a while beside it in prayer. St. Jerome said it could not be made too frequently. The hermits in the Egyptian desert were wont to make the holy sign over their food and drink, before they took their repast, and one of them is credited with the statement that "where the cross passes the evil in anything is powerless."

Rev. John Ryan, S.J., Irish Monasticism - Origins and Early Development (2nd edn. 1972, reprinted Irish Academic Press, 1986), 234-235.

Note: This post has also been published at my own blog Omnium Sanctorum Hiberniae which is dedicated to the saints of Ireland. 

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Back on the Rails Part V - Back Again

Gentle reader, I have undertaken several journeys of moment in the past few years: to the Bar, to the Altar, down the pleasant waters of the River Lee and along the Railways of Cork.  The last proved just too ambitious for me in the midst of the hurly-burly of the first two.  However, by some popular demand, I'm back on the rails again at last and looking forward (dare I even mention it?) to exploring the passage of the River Blackwater at some not too distant date.

Let me remind you, gentle reader, of my fundamental theory.  As I have said before, it is my own but, as with so many of the best ideas, not mine alone or even first.  It is found throughout the writings of Hilaire Belloc.  There is something about a river that delineates a landscape and forms the people and their history.  Follow the river and you will find the people and their history and what formed them both.

In his The Historic Thames Belloc says "Upon all these accounts a river, during the natural centuries which precede and follow the epochs of high civilisation, is as much more important than the road or the path as, let us say, a railway to-day is more important than a turnpike." He also addresses the significance of rivers to human civilization in The Path to Rome and Warfare in England, particularly the first chapter on strategic topography.

Let us return to the Railways.  At the outset of this series, I suggested that Railways, by respecting the topography and maintaining, albeit with increasing alacrity and greater mobility, traditional societies,  reflected and supported the traditional life of old Cork in a way that Motorways and National Road Networks just don't.

In the second part of this series, I looked at the nexus of the network - a greater network that you find today even in Dublin - the beautiful City of Cork.  In the third part, I moved out of the City to the South West and in the fourth part I passed Innishannon along the Bandon line.  You can see the stately pace of history in this Railway journey.  The doors close, the whistle sounds, the green flag waves and we're off again...

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Mass in St. Agnes' Crumlin

St. Agnes' Church, Crumlin, was one of the first great era of suburban Churches in Dublin built under Archbishop Byrne (1921-1940).  The firm of Ashlin and Coleman designed the Church, along with St. Teresa's, Donore Avenue (1922), St. Anne's, Shankill (1931), St. Columba's, Iona Road (1933), and Our Lady of Good Counsel (begun in 1933, blessed in 1942).

Archbishop Byrne also oversaw the building of the Church of St. MacCullin, Lusk (1922), St. Brigid, Killester (1925), St. Vincent de Paul, Marino (1926), Garrison Church, Arbour Hill, 1927, Church of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, Foxrock (1935), and Our Lady of the Rosary, Harold's Cross (begun in 1938, blessed 1940).  In contrast to the Churches that were built under his successors, these were generally stone-built Churches in a very traditional style but temporary Churches were also needed until a new Church could be built.  As part of this great extension, Archbishop Byrne also blessed a tin Church at Portmarnock and a wooden Church at Kiltiernan.

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Latin Mass in Emo 2014

Reports of previous Masses in Borris, Co. Carlow, are here (2013), here (2012), here (2011), here (2010), an account of the Church itself here, and an account of the nearby Emo Court here.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

St. Pius X - Part XIV

On this day in 1914, Our Most Holy Father, Pope (later Saint) Pius X died in the odour of sanctity.

Sancte Pie Decime, Gloriose Patrone, ora pro nobis!

Saturday, 2 August 2014

St. Pius X - Part XIII

On this day in 1914, Our Most Holy Father, Pope (later Saint) Pius X issued his exhortation Dum Europa to the Christian peoples of Europe appealing to them to hold back from the war that was about to engulf them.

Sancte Pie Decime, Gloriose Patrone, ora pro nobis!

Monday, 28 July 2014

Mass for Grandparents in Borris

Reports of previous Masses in Borris, Co. Carlow, are here (2013) and here (2012) and a feature on the Church of the Sacred Heart here.

Monday, 30 June 2014

Latin Mass in Monasterevin

Reports of previous Masses in Monasterevin are available here (2013), here (2012), and here (2011).

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Centenary of the deaths of HRIH the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and HH the Duchess of Hohenberg

Pray for the repose of the souls of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his wife the Duchess of Hohenberg who were killed at the hand of an atheist anarchist terrorist at about this hour 100 years ago.

Requiem aeternam dona eis domine et lux perpetua luceat eis