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February 20, 2019

Note from the Assistant Managing Editor:

"A mystic is one who is in love with God."  Our reflection this week is from the beautiful writings of Dorothy Day.

When I began spiritual direction, my director told me to read Transformation in Christ.  We reprint the introduction by the author, Dietrich von Hildebrand, below.

Then we have a great question and answer piece from Fr.  George Rutler on the sign of peace, appropriate confirmation gifts, playing with toy guns, and filial correction.  See "Dear Fr.  Rutler."

Every time I go Mass, I have been meditating upon a piece by Anthony Esolen we published a few weeks ago: "Why Traditional Hymns are Superior to Modern Ones."  He wrote, "Thomas Day, in Why Catholics Can't Sing, says that when the cantor has a microphone, and the volume is turned up, the sound will overwhelm everyone else.  All you hear is the soprano or tenor, and the people sense that they ought to keep clear of the performance.  That's if they can find their notes at all."

Along with Esolen, Peter Kwasniewski's piece on "What makes Gregorian chant uniquely itself" demonstrates why chant is so suited to the Mass.  "Gregorian chant arose exclusively for divine worship, and lends itself to no other (profane) use.  It is inherently sacred, that is, set apart for God alone."

When Pope Saint John Paul II was asked what was the purpose of suffering, he replied, "To unleash love."  In another piece from Anthony Esolen, we hear the story of Saint Josephine Bakhita, kidnapped into slavery, who said she would kiss the hands of her captors for without them "I would not be a Christian today."

This week, let us strive to unite our sufferings to Christ.  - Meaghen Gonzalez

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"To those who wish to see, God gives sufficient light; to those who do not wish to see, He gives sufficient darkness." - Blaise Pascal

New Resources

Receiving Jesus and the One Who Sent Him - Dorothy Day - from Dorothy Day Selected Writings

Always the glimpses of God came most when I was alone.

Author's Introduction: Transformation in Christ - Dietrich von Hildebrand  - Transformation in Christ.

God has called upon us to become new men in Christ.

Dear Father Rutler - Father George W. Rutler - Catholic Herald

I don't like giving the Sign of the Peace at Mass.  Is this uncharitable or disobedient? (Aand other questions for Father Rutler)

The Radical Error of Our Time - Anthony Esolen - The Catholic Thing

Egalitarianism is the radical error of our time.

The Victory of Life over Death - Pierre-Marie Dumont - Magnificat

Throughout the centuries, and especially during the Renaissance, this iconography was to inspire representations of the Resurrection.

What makes Gregorian chant uniquely itself — with recommended recordings - Peter Kwasniewski - LifeSite

Today, I will discuss what makes chant distinctive among musical forms, and then recommend my favorite chant recordings.

How the Church Has Changed the World: Blessed Are You - Anthony Esolen - Magnificat

"What is your name, miserable filth?" sneered her captors in the desert sun.

The Angel of Light - Father George W. Rutler - From the Pastor

Like the optimist who sees a glass of water half-full and the pessimist who sees it half-empty, people assess the times in which they live by their personality.

Editorials of Interest:

Editorials of Interest

Letter to an Aspiring Priest - First Things

For a Catholic young man who is fervent in his faith, it's a normal and reasonable thing to think seriously about being a priest, and rightly so.

Pope Francis to Canonize Bl. John Henry Newman - NC Register

The Vatican announces major advances in the causes of the famous 19th century English theologian and convert from Anglicanism, and the 20th century heroic Hungarian Cardinal Mindszenty who stood up to fascism and communism.

Pope signs decree recognizing second Newman miracle - Catholic Herald

Blessed John Henry Newman is headed for sainthood.

Lay Catholics: Stop waiting for bishops to do your job - Catholic Vote

In most cases, the lay faithful bring far more energy to excoriating the clergy than they do to defending the faith in the public square.

Baptism of Blood: Honoring the Coptic Martyrs - First Things

They had left home as poor migrant workers, and would never return, but had become saints and were now more present than ever, albeit in a different form. They now wore crowns.

Therapist, Exorcists Comment on Satanic Catholic Priest - NC Register

Priests need our prayers.

Matt Fradd helps you understand Aquinas - Pints With Aquinas

Every episode of Pints With Aquinas addresses a question St. Thomas answers in the Summa and other works.

President Trump's Assault on Legal Immigration - Public Discourse

To remain prosperous, America needs more immigrants.

Hungary waives income tax for mothers of 4 in bid to restore sustainable birthrate - Aleteia

The fertility rate is universally in danger across Europe, as currently every country in the EU is below the replacement rate.

21 Thoughts by Jerome Lejeune, Discoverer of Down Syndrome - Jerome Lejeune Foundation

Life has a very long history, but each of us has a very definite beginning — the moment of conception.

Infanticide Becomes Justifiable - First Things

How is it that infanticide has become justifiable when it was unthinkable in the years following World War II (German doctors were hanged at Nuremberg for killing disabled babies)?

Christianity's Masculinity Crisis - Crisis Magazine

It might seem odd to classify gender theory as a national security threat. But gender theorists want to make it a national issue.

Hotel Trans: Check In Any Time, But Never Leave - FRC

Putting kids on puberty blockers does not let them choose anything. It makes the choice for them.

Tech giants are banning true speech about biological sex - The Stream

Twitter's latest move against free thought came in the form of a ban on "misgendering" and "deadnaming."

Why Does the Catholic Church Keep Failing on Sexual Abuse? - The Atlantic

As the world's top bishops prepare to meet later this month for an unprecedented summit on sexual abuse at the Vatican, Cardinal Sean O'Malley has found himself frustrated, unable to push reforms through at the top.

Survivor on Pope's anti-abuse summit: 'He's gotta deliver' - Crux

One of the most outspoken survivors of clerical abuse says that he wants to see accountability for both the crime and cover-up of clerical abuse.

With Sex-Abuse Summit, Pope Francis Signals a 'Pastoral' Approach - National Catholic Register

The Feb. 21-24 meeting takes the view that bishops who think as the Pope wishes them to think about their role as shepherds will then do the right thing in tackling sex abuse.

Divorce and the need to help married couples - Catholic Digest

Author Leila Miller tells the stories of adult children with divorced parents.

Tall orders for husbands: Chrysostom spells out what loving your wife is all about - Aleteia

When St. Paul says husbands should love their wives, he adds an explainer: "as Christ loved the Church."

The Velatio Nuptialis: An Ancient (and Forgotten) Part of the Latin Marriage Rite - NLM

A custom that goes back to the first centuries of the Church: two high-ranking clerics or two witnesses held a large white veil over the kneeling couple during the nuptial blessing given by the priest between the Pater and the Kiss of Peace.

Broken heart? Pray this prayer to St. Dwynwen for healing - Aleteia

If you are suffering from a bad break up, St. Dwynwen is your saint.

Why Valentine's Day Is Named After a Saint - Crisis Magazine

With the bustle associated with Valentine's Day we often forget that February 14 is about love — true love.

Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman and
St. Justin Martyr, pray for us

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