Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas, Mr Potter!

The yoke of his burden

For the yoke of his burden and the staff for his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, thou hast broken as on the day of Midian.

-Isaiah 9: 4 (From the First Reading for Midnight Mass, OF)

A priest friend emails his news. After months of being unable to celebrate the sacraments publically, he has been given a clean bill of health by his diocesan safeguarding committee after an investigation into (what turned out to be malicious) allegations about 'inappropriate behaviour' with a junior cleric.

When the allegation first came out, a friend who had been taught by said priest 30 years ago texted:

"If the allegation is the usual one levelled against the clergy, it is the most disgusting fabrication I have ever heard"

Thus it proved to be.

So he is cleared, but shunned by some former colleagues and facing an uncertain future in his 70s. Having travelled across Europe with him when I was a student, I could have told them he was a most unlikely candidate to lead young men astray. But such is the tenor of the times that such allegations are not merely taken seriously (when they are, as in this case, laughable) but that the presumption of innocence is turned upside down and an innocent (if naive) priest is cast out and tainted.

Why does the Church get it so hopelessly wrong at times? In the midst of the sexual chaos of the 60s/70s, known predatory paedophiles were shuffled around, allowing them to wreak havoc and molest children in pastures new. Now a ludicrous allegation is taken seriously and an investigation which could have taken minutes to sort out using common sense and a few deftly asked questions becomes dragged out over months by a bunch of curial bureaucrats.

My friend has borne his ordeal with admirable good humour, knowing the accusations to be untrue. But it has been mortifying to see his reputation and good name dragged through the mud.

Please pray for him.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Thy years shall not fail

Peter Hitchens explains what Christmas means for him as a Prayer Book- traditionalist Anglican:

So for me the season is one of darkness illuminated with carols sung by lamplight, the sun low in the sky, and a promise, never entirely fulfilled on the day itself, of something wonderful to come. That sticks, when all else falls away.

It is only more recently, when it has become (as it wasn’t in my childhood home , though we got plenty of religion at school) an occasion for churchgoing that I have been captivated by the extraordinary, disturbing beauty of the Collect, Epistle and Gospel for ‘the Birth-day of Christ, commonly called Christmas Day’ as prescribed in the Church of England’s 1662 Book of Common Prayer. If you are really fortunate, you may be able to find a church where these passages are read at midnight on Christmas Eve. Listen carefully, if you do. It may not be long before this lovely ceremony is entirely stamped out by modernising fanatics. You could be one of the last to hear it.

The Gospel is the soaring, fiery declaration from the opening of St John’s Gospel – ending with ‘and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of his father, full of grace and truth’.

But the Epistle, that of St Paul to the Hebrews, borrows from something much older, the 102nd Psalm, when it draws itself up at the end to declare this promise :’And Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of Thine hands. They shall perish: but Thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment: and as a vesture shalt Thou fold them up , and they shall be changed: but Thou art the same, and Thy years shall not fail’.

This is why the Holy Father has been so far-sighted, such a good shepherd, so open-hearted in wanting to welcome into the bosom of the Church those who hold fast to this patrimony.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Presumably Luke.. says "And with your spirit"

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Please, someone buy them...

...if only to burn them.

The usually reliable Luzar Vestments is selling them for 175 GBP.

Curiously they have maniples going with them.


[Medical warning: the ophrey may induce migraines/epilepsy]

Saturday, December 03, 2011


Listening to the commentariat imply that because one claims that one is part of a 99% majority, one should have one's way. surely implies that the BBC, The Guardian the LibDems etc will surely be putting all their efforts into stopping the proposals for 'gay marriage' (an oxymoron if ever there was one) in Scotland.

After all, gays comprise only 1% of the population, don't they?

Friday, December 02, 2011


Thursday, December 01, 2011

New Translation #2: Licit?

Some parishes are threatening not to use the New English Translation of the Missal, such as this fellow in Australia.

Is Mass celebrated using the old Missal licit?

[Heh, heh. It feels good calling it the Old Missal. Do the hippies feel like recusants now?]