So asks this article from Time Magazine (of all sources).

He may not have been thinking about it at the time, but Pope Benedict, in the course of his recent U.S. visit may have dealt a knockout blow to the liberal American Catholicism that has challenged Rome since the early 1960s. He did so by speaking frankly and forcefully of his “deep shame” during his meeting with victims of the Church’s sex-abuse scandal. By demonstrating that he “gets” this most visceral of issues, the pontiff may have successfully mollified a good many alienated believers — and in the process, neutralized the last great rallying point for what was once a feisty and optimistic style of progressivism.

The liberal rebellion in American Catholicism has dogged Benedict and his predecessors since the Second Vatican Council of 1962-65. “Vatican II,” which overhauled much of Catholic teaching and ritual, had a revolutionary impact on the Church as a whole. It enabled people to hear the Mass in their own languages; embraced the principle of religious freedom; rejected anti-Semitism; and permitted Catholic scholars to grapple with modernity.

But Vatican II meant even more to a generation of devout but restless young people in the U.S. Rather than a course correction, Terrence Tilley, now head of the Fordham University’s theology department, wrote recently, his generation perceived “an interruption of history, a divine typhoon that left only the keel and structure of the church unchanged.” They discerned in the Council a call to greater church democracy, and an assertion of individual conscience that could stand up to the authority of even the Pope. So, they battled the Vatican’s birth-control ban, its rejection of female priests and insistence on celibacy, and its authoritarianism.

Personally, I don’t agree with some of the analysis provided but there does seem to have been a sea change in the struggles between orthodoxy and progressivism in the Catholic Church and Benedict does seem to be the catalyst. It is interesting that most of the people interviewed in the article seem to be progressives themselves.

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From the Catholic News Agency:

Yonkers, NY, Apr 26, 2008 / 03:45 am (CNA).- St. Joseph Seminary in Yonkers, New York, has received dozens of applications following Pope Benedict’s visit, the New York Daily News reports.

“It’s been like a tsunami, a good tsunami of interest,” said Father Luke Sweeney, the Archdiocese of New York’s vocations director. “I’ve been meeting people all week and have a lot of e-mails I haven’t had the chance yet to respond to. It has been incredible.”

For the first time in 108 years, the seminary had been preparing for a year with no students. Only 23 seminarians are expected to be ordained for New York City over the next four years. A study carried out by Catholic World Report claims the archdiocese’s ratio of priests to congregation members is among the worst in the country.

Currently there are only 648 diocesan priests for the Archdiocese of New York, which has 2.5 million Catholics.

“We are facing a severe shortage,” Father Sweeney said. The vocations director recently launched a recruitment campaign that uses the slogans “The World Needs Heroes” and “You Have To Be a Real Man If You Want to Become a Priest.”

“We were hoping the Pope would convince many who were considering the priesthood to make the next step. It looks like he did,” he said.

The Pope spoke to a rally of 25,000 young people on the seminary’s grounds last Saturday, April 19.

Father Sweeney described how the Pope’s words affected one new applicant.

“One said he came, saw the crowd, heard what the Pope said and then called us,” the priest said. “He said his questions and concerns were answered when he heard him speak.”

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Last Sunday, I attended a neighboring parish for a Sunday evening Mass. I have attended this Mass perhaps a 10 times over the past year. This week, we were treated to a youth choir who performed a beautiful Latin hymn during Communion. After mass, we were invited to stay while they performed for 10-15 minutes of additional hymns, mostly in Latin and a capella. We really enjoyed it.

Today, I found an interesting article by Lucille A. Flynn (a former member of the American Guild of Organists and the current organist at the St. Benedict Center in Harvard) in the New Oxford Review that talks about the history of church music and asks the question whether the resurgence of orthodoxy under Pope Benedict if Catholic churches are going to see a comeback of this style of music.

The Renaissance period reached its apex during the middle of the 17th century. For all its accomplishments, a period of unrest ensued, culminating in the French Revolution in 1789. The sad legacy of this cruel upheaval resulted in the “Age of Enlightenment” — man’s new orientation toward science and reason cut adrift from Faith.

Pope St. Pius X foresaw the results of this so-called Age of Enlightenment, and warned of the errors and effects on society of this new way of thinking in his encyclical Pascendi Dominus Gregis (“On the Doctrines of the Modernists,” 1907). We know all too well the results of this man-centered philosophy. For Catholics, it has been the degradation of the Traditional Mass, a new interpretation of the written word, and the loss of our universal Church language. Two generations of Catholics have been subjected on a weekly basis to love-your-neighbor and in-praise-of-nature tunes accompanied by guitars, xylophones, drums, piano, trumpets, body-swaying, and hand-clapping.

Will Catholics again seek the serenity, solace, and unity of body and soul found in the celebration of the Tridentine Mass and the peaceful tonality of Gregorian chant?

The end of our 40-year liturgical wilderness wandering appears to be in sight. In July 2007 Pope Benedict XVI issued a motu proprio, titled Summorum Pontificum, restoring the “Mass of All Ages,” and along with it the unique, priceless patrimony of the Roman Catholic Church — the melodic, uplifting, soul-stirringly beautiful Gregorian chant.

I can tell you that if the music we heard last week is an example, it definitely enhances the Mass.

Hat-tip to Michael Brown of Spirit Daily on this article.

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I haven’t seen it yet, but I have heard some interviews with Ben Stein on this movie and am happy to see it doing so well (as reported by the Christian Post). Once again, the media elitists in this country have underestimated religion in this country, assuming that their control over the education system had relegated creationism to the “fringes.” WRONG!

“Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” the pro-intelligent design documentary featuring actor Ben Stein, made history this weekend as it propelled full speed into the top 10 box office. It opened as the widest and one of the most commercially successful releases for any documentary film.

In an impressive opening weekend, the film debuted at No. 9 at the box office, earning a respectable $3.2 million while only appearing on 1,052 screens.

“Leatherheads,” the story of a struggling football team based in Duluth, Minnesota, and written and directed by George Clooney, trailed the new documentary film, placing at only No. 10 its third week at the box office, despite showing at over twice as many screens.

Although the new pro-intelligent design documentary had struggled with a reported marketing and production budget that ranged only in the single digit millions – a miniscule figure compared to the standard $117 million regularly burned by Hollywood productions – the film proved to defy expectations and panning by critics.

From the beginning of its conception, the film had been heavily criticized by scientists who dismissed the film as inaccurate, misleading, and dishonest in its portrayal of the shortcomings of evolution.

Reviewers were also among the film’s vocal critics, and in an article written for the Orlando Sentinel, Roger Moore was among those who believed the film would fail commercially, describing the film as a “mockery.”

“’Expelled’ is a full-on, amply budgeted Michael Moore-styled mockery of evolution, a film that dresses creationist crackpottery in an ‘intelligent design’ leisure suit and tries to make the fact that it’s not given credence in schools a matter of ‘academic freedom,’” Moore wrote in his description of the film.

Producers of the film, however, had hoped that while disadvantaged and outmanned in the realm of Hollywood, active marketing and outreach with Christian groups and homeschoolers could help propel the movie, in the manner of David versus Goliath, into a box office hit – a strategy that appears to have worked.

In one such campaign, the producers of the film offered to award as much as $1,000 in a contest among church groups to bring the largest crowds to see the film.

Christian groups in general proved to be receptive to the film’s message.

Anthony Horvath, executive director of the Athanatos Christian Ministry, an online apologetics academy dedicated to the defense of the Christian faith, praised the film.

“The outrage expressed by the atheistic community at Ben Stein’s movie, ‘Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed’ has been so palpable you could bottle it up and sell it as an energy drink. They are practically foaming at the mouth,” he said in a statement.

“The blogosphere reveals the utter disdain that the hard core atheists have for anyone who merely suggests that it might be possible to scientifically detect design. If all Stein’s movie accomplishes is revealing more publicly what many in the scientific community have been saying quietly all along, that is a major accomplishment,” he added.

Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, gave the film a thumbs up, commenting, “I think it should be required viewing for anyone who wants to understand what is going on and what is at stake in the debate over worldviews in this society,” according to Baptist Press. “This is one of these times when you can vote with your pocketbook. You can vote with your economic franchise, and Hollywood will listen when they see the dollar signs.”

“Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed,” is a feature-length documentary film about researchers, professors, and academics who claim to have been marginalized, silenced, or threatened with academic expulsion because of their challenges to some or all parts of Darwin’s theory of evolution. Makers of the documentary said the movie doesn’t seek to champion intelligent design as the sole truth but calls for more academic freedom, where challenges to any scientific theory including Darwinism would be fairly considered.

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This article by former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum, from the Philadelphia Inquirer is a few week’s old, but give a view on Catholic higher education that I find important.

By Rick Santorum
Is Pope Benedict XVI coming to America to drop the hammer on the president for the Iraq war? You might think so if your gospel comes courtesy of the mainstream media.

It’s more likely that the pope will speak about the war at the United Nations as he has in the past – as a church leader addressing the challenges of finding a pathway for dialogue between two faiths in conflict.

The pope’s only official church meeting is with all 213 presidents of Catholic undergraduate colleges and universities. Given the traditional and orthodox educational philosophy of this former university professor, as well as the sad recent history of Catholic higher education in America, one might well expect fireworks.

Since Vatican II, most Catholic colleges have sought to reduce their relationship with Catholicism and the church to a one-word marketing pitch – Catholic. On most Catholic campuses across the country, you might be surprised to learn that most professors are not Catholic and that the Catholics are often nonpracticing. These Catholic colleges routinely host speakers and artistic productions that oppose core Catholic teaching when they’re not blatantly anti-Catholic, and I’m not just talking about Barack Obama’s appearance at Mercyhurst or Hillary Clinton’s at King’s College. Even the gold standard of Catholic colleges, the University of Notre Dame, will soon drop below 50 percent Catholics on its faculty and have on-campus performances of The Vagina Monologues.

Most core curricula, if that exists, provide little exposure to the Catholic intellectual tradition. Even in the theology departments, which are supposed to be certified as authentically Catholic by the local diocese, students have to search long and hard to find a professor who will provide faithful Catholic teaching.

As for campus life, most Catholic colleges have abandoned their mission and duty to help shape the moral and spiritual formation of its students. In loco parentis has been reduced to facilitating loco behavior. It is nearly impossible to distinguish a list of authorized student organizations at Georgetown from those at Penn.

Yes, there are some orthodox Catholic universities. The Cardinal Newman Society recently surveyed all Catholic colleges for its recent book Choosing a Catholic College and recommended only colleges that provided a quality education and “gave priority to their Catholic identity in most, if not all, aspects of campus life.”

How many made the list? Only 20, including just one in Pennsylvania, DeSales University in Allentown.

The pope recognizes the importance of Catholic education in forming the next generation spiritually, morally and intellectually. He no doubt understands that Catholic universities in America have been at the intellectual center of dissent from the teaching of the magisterium. It is one thing for college professors from a secular university to offer moral arguments supporting abortion, embryonic stem-cell research, cloning, and same-sex marriage. It is another when these arguments are coming from theology professors at Notre Dame, St. Joseph’s, Marquette and, until a few years ago, Catholic University.

The sad fact is that, during the last 40 years, Catholic higher education has not only failed to counter the forces of cultural decay across America, but has added to the rot as well.

Pope Benedict’s speech is unlikely to break new ground next Thursday. His predecessor, Pope John Paul II, in his 1990 encyclical Ex Corde Ecclesiae, gave the bishops the mandate and the tools to bring colleges back into the intellectual fold with Rome. Since then, of course, other crises have made calls on their attention and, alas, cut into their credibility. Pope Benedict will remind them of the work that remains.

He’s also unlikely to break any china. As he did in his seminal speech on faith and reason at the University of Regensburg, he’ll elevate, not scold.

I am no stranger to sounding the warning sirens of cultural decay in America. Catholic higher education as well as primary and secondary education over the last 40 years could have been a healthy antidote to this trend. They were not. And at times, they contributed to it.

The Catholic Church has struggled and triumphed for more than 2,000 years. In good seasons and bad, however, it has made a rich and distinctive contribution to the intellectual foundations of Western civilization. That reality, the deep wisdom of scholars from Saints Jerome and Augustine to Aquinas and Catherine of Siena, who’ve brought intellectual, spiritual and moral guidance to generations upon generations, is being lost. America and the West are poorer from it.

Academic freedom and diversity have taken center stage on American campuses today. I believe Pope Benedict will encourage the 90 percent of the four-year colleges in this country to give students the ultimate in academic freedom, the pursuit of truth by providing something truly diverse in American higher education – an authentic Catholic education.

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Here is an interesting article from today’s USA Today with several perspectives on the Pontiff’s visit to the US.  It shares the impressions of several people who attended the Yankee Stadium Mass.

NEW YORK — Benedict XVI celebrated Mass before a loud, jubilant crowd at Yankee Stadium on Sunday, capping a U.S. visit marked by the pope’s focus on clergy sexual abuse and by his emergence as someone more than an enforcer of doctrine — a pastor.

“For years, I’ve been telling people about Benedict’s depth, warmth, humor and humility. Now I can say, ‘See!’ ” exulted Scott Hahn, professor of theology at Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio.

The pope’s final public appearance of his six-day U.S. trip brought exuberance from 57,100 in the stadium and thousands more outside.

“Oh, my God, I feel so blessed to be here!” said Capri Christianson, 10, who with her mother, Maribel, won a ticket lottery at St. Lucy’s parish in the Bronx. “So far this is the best day of my life.”

Applause, unusual during a Roman Catholic sermon, twice interrupted the pope’s homily: when he called for respect for “the most defenseless of all human beings, the unborn child in the mother’s womb” and when he appealed for more religious vocations in a church running low on priests and nuns.

Otherwise, except for the rumble of passing trains on elevated tracks outside, the stadium was quiet during the sermon.

Benedict’s visit raised two big questions: How would he address the clergy sex-abuse scandal that has rocked the U.S. church, and how would this famous champion of orthodox church teaching relate to American Catholics, equally famous for going their own way?

Benedict lamented the scandal on each of the first three days of his visit and met with a group of sex-abuse victims from the Boston area. He accepted a hand-bound book bearing the names of almost 1,500 people who say they were abused by priests.

“It was a clear signal to the bishops, not all of whom have a strong record of meeting with victims, this is how you deal,” said Amy Welborn of Fort Wayne, Ind., a Catholic writer.

As for his personal style, Benedict’s affable, grandfatherly persona won over Catholics — and non-Catholics — of all kinds. Instead of the strict scholar Benedict was often portrayed as before becoming pope, Americans saw an avuncular priest who bestowed his blessing at every stop, arms wide open and brown eyes sparkling.

“I think it’s a tribute to our church that an 81-year-old pope has the vibrancy and message to connect and communicate with so many people,” said Tom Strahle of Ridgewood, N.J.

This is the Benedict that packed the famed baseball stadium.

“Size-wise, it’s like a Yankee crowd, but it’s a whole different atmosphere,” said Louie Dituri, owner of the Yankee Eatery across from the stadium. “Yankee fans are excited about the game. These people are excited about more important things.”

They included not only those with tickets, most of whom arrived on special buses, but also the unticketed, who pushed against metal police barricades outside the stadium, hoping to see the pope.

Benedict arrived in the Bronx after a morning stop to pray at the site of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

People came to the Mass for many reasons — to worship God, to cheer the pope, to see the spectacle. Sisters Lydia and Hilda Estrada came to be healed. Lydia Estrada’s spine is fused; Hilda suffers from arthritis. Both said they were in pain. But Lydia Estrada was confident she would not hurt much longer: “I know that being in his presence will be healing.”

Benedict also was changed by his visit, suggested George Donnelly, 56, a retired Catholic school administrator from Brooklyn. “I think he, too, is on a journey,” Donnelly said. “I think he’s evolved as a leader and come to understand that he has the opportunity to do some healing. I’m especially proud of how he’s reached out to so many other communities … the disabled, the 9/11 victims, the Jewish community.”

Benedict’s addresses and homilies shared several characteristics — praise for American faith, energy, charity and interreligious cooperation, and blunt attacks on secularism and people who want to evade eternal truths to base their spirituality on “feelings.”

Rather than lecturing, however, Benedict was the pope of the “perhaps,” as when he told U.S. bishops that “perhaps” they’d be more effective if they improved their preaching and teaching.

“Nearly flawless!” R. Scott Appleby, Notre Dame University professor of Catholic history, said of the visit. “Given the context — what was expected of him, what John Paul II did before him, Benedict outperformed all expectations.”

The impact of the visit “will be seismic,” Hahn said. “You’ll see it five or 10 years from now when there’s a rise in the number of seminarians and young priests and young adult men and women looking for something bigger than themselves to believe in.”

“Any spiritual aspect of Benedict’s visit will wear off fairly quickly,” said William D’Antonio, a fellow in sociology at Catholic University of America in Washington. “The important question is whether anything will change structurally” on issues such as clergy sex abuse, support for Catholic inner-city schools and immigration. “It’s like the president announcing his agenda for his first year in office. Wait to see if there are real changes.”

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian, who represented 350 of the 1,500 documented cases of clergy sex abuse in the Boston Archdiocese at the height of the crisis, said the pope’s meeting with victims and his “powerful and sympathetic words” were valuable, but “the pope gave absolutely no indication that there would be any actions taken against the people … who were negligent and under whose supervision priests molested scores of children.”

It was a papal visit to remember, for the visitor as well as the visited. The pope seemed in no hurry to leave Yankee Stadium. As the recessional hymn, Beethoven’s Ode to Joy, reverberated, he stopped to shake hands, taking it all in before starting the journey to Rome.

Vice President Cheney hosted a farewell ceremony for the pope at John F. Kennedy Airport. “May God bless America!” Benedict said before departing New York.

I strikes me that many people were surprised by the compassion and love of Benedict, whom many had tagged with the moniker of “hardliner.” I think it is great that he can embody the orthodoxy of the Catholic faith with great fortitude, personality and warmth.

Personally, I was quite pleased with the visit. I hope an pray that it’s impact and significance will be lasting.

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An excellent article in American Spectator Magazine on the Pope’s visit to the US.

“They say, ‘His letters are weighty and strong, but his bodily presence is weak, and his speech of no account.'”

So wrote the Apostle Paul describing the scuttlebutt about himself in one of his periodic gusts of annoyance with the Church at Corinth. The Corinthians had definite ideas about what an apostle should look and sound like and Paul did not measure up in their eyes. Part of the problem was that there seemed to be a disconnect in the minds of the Corinthians between how Paul sounded in print and the way he came off in person.

Communication wasn’t especially helped by the fact that the Corinthians were pretty confident they were All That and that Paul would really be improved if he would just listen to their up-to-date theories. Throughout the correspondence that constitutes 1 and 2 Corinthians, you can see Paul patiently (and sometimes not-so-patiently) attempting to shepherd a group of people who are blissfully confident that they had it together.

The Corinthians brag about their tolerance of sexual immorality, revel in class inequalities, pull their chins thoughtfully while the latest philosopher tells them there is no resurrection from the dead, resent Paul’s authority, are all excited about some new moral theory that “Grace” = “Go Nuts and Do Whatever you Want!”, as well as various other alarums and discursions that force the apostle to put out a bunch of fires.

Plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose. The Corinthians sound remarkably American. And as you survey the Mainstream Media (MSM) coverage about Pope Benedict, who is visiting America this week, what comes through again and again is that much of the MSM is already weary of hearing what it has never yet heard.

The comparison of the US to the Corinthians in this article are very interesting.

Nonetheless, this Pope who believes so strongly in the transformative power of the Holy Spirit appears to think that even a Paris Hilton people can be granted the sight to see beyond the tips of their own cosmetically-enhanced noses.

He comes to us in one of the darker hours of our history when we are at war, the economy is in a shambles, the election is a choice between Larry (D), Curly (D), and Moe (R), Solomonic judgments are about to be made in the field of bioethics by the best court prophets money can buy, the Church is wracked by scandal, and we are preparing ourselves to cope with it all by watching That Pregnant Guy on Oprah and dosing up on a cocktail of Viagra and Ambien.

Will Benedict succeed in his mission to America? I suppose it depends on what you mean by “succeed” and “mission.” Will he succeed in making the world not be the world? No. Even Jesus couldn’t do that. But then, that’s not the mission for either Jesus or Benedict.

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Here is an interesting article from the Washington Post.

During an era when two-thirds of young Catholics say they can be good Catholics without going to Mass and many believe in a woman’s right to choose abortion and view premarital sex as morally acceptable, Karen and David Hickey might be considered renegades — because they are so devout.

The lives of the Fairfax County couple and their five young children revolve around the Catholic Church, and they stand out as devoted because so many others do not follow the teachings of their church to the letter.

For the Hickeys and a community of young, conservative Washington area Catholics who piously follow the teachings of the church, Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Washington next week carries a special meaning.

They appreciate Benedict for his unwavering advocacy of what they hold to be “Catholic”: ancient liturgical practices such as the traditional Latin Mass, the supremacy of the Catholic Church, Gregorian chants in worship and theologians who concur with the pope’s teachings. As the Vatican’s orthodoxy watchdog for 24 years before becoming pope, Benedict earned this group’s devotion.

“I love Pope Benedict,” said Karen Hickey, 35, who keeps a bust of him on her piano. “He’s done so much good in the little time that he’s been there.”

Young, orthodox Catholics are more enthusiastic about Benedict than are many in the older generation, said Colleen Carroll Campbell, author of “The New Faithful,” a book about the youthful set. “They like his countercultural stance on a lot of things. . . . They also like his emphasis on Catholic identity and fidelity to Catholic doctrine.”

But even Benedict in person isn’t enough to draw some traditional Catholics to the papal Mass next week at Nationals Park. They feel it will be too informal for their taste, and many dislike the idea of receiving Communion standing up instead of kneeling at an altar rail.

Chris Paulitz, a Senate aide, says he won’t go, but he will show his support for Benedict by going to see him pass in the popemobile.

Such young Catholics’ strict obedience to the tenets of their faith makes them an anomaly in their generation. Only 14 percent of Catholics ages 20 to 40 attend Mass at least weekly, according to research by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University, and just one in five goes to confession once a year or more.

For conservative Catholics, that’s unthinkable.

“You have to live your faith and practice, not just learn the doctrine,” said Anne Francoise Guelcher, 40, the mother of six children — ages 15 months to 14 years — who lives with husband James in Montclair, Va.

Guelcher home-schools her children. “That way, I can really teach them about the faith,” she says.

I offer heartfelt applause to these young families committed to their faith and also to the magisterium of the Catholic Church.

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Last weekend, we made a trip as a family to a retreat given by Michael Brown of Spirit Daily in Natick, MA and to Stockbridge, MA to the National Shrine of Divine Mercy for Divine Mercy Sunday. I had planned to blog about it throughout the weekend. Unfortunately, I forgot to pack the power supply for my laptop and tonight is my first opportunity since I returned home.

The weekend was really a special one for the family. The retreat was an interesting event. Looking back at it, I wouldn’t actually call it a “retreat” in that it wasn’t the soul searching, faith enriching experience which I have come to associate with retreats. It was however a very interesting presentation of the kind of material Brown writes about on Spirit Daily. The theme of the event was Spiritual Warfare. Its focus was largely on analysis of near death experiences and how they consistently relate to Catholic teaching on purgatory, heaven and hell and prophecy. The material was impressive and Brown is an engaging presenter and a deeply faithful man.

The irony of our weekend is that the Spirit Daily retreat took us to Massachusetts and it was largely because we were already in the state that brought us to Stockbridge and the Divine Mercy Shrine, and yet it was our Divine Mercy Celebration that was one of the most deeply spiritual events I have ever experienced.

My wife has developed a very special devotion to the Divine Mercy of Jesus over the past year. Despite the fact that the Michael Brown retreat included a celebration of Mass, she was trying to figure out where we would go to Mass on Sunday when it occurred to her that the National Shrine is in Massachusetts.  Though it was two hours away, we decided to make the journey, and was it ever worth it.

We were among 12,000 pilgrims to the shrine that day.  The principal celebrant of the Mass was Theodore Cardinal McCarrick of Washington, DC and concelebrated by Bishop McDonnell of Springfield, MA and many priests from the resident order of the shrine, the Marians of the Immaculate Conception and other clergy.  It was the largest assembly of priests I have seen since I had the honor of attending an outdoor Mass in downtown Philadelphia said by Pope John Paul II in 1979.

It was an amazing spiritual event to be joined by so many faithful and the Mass itself was truly beautiful.  The Cardinal’s homily was really wonderful (We recorded it on EWTN and I’m trying to figure out how to get it onto the computer so I can post it) and the music was beautiful.  After mass was an exposition of the Blessed Sacrament which completed right about 3PM (the hour of Divine Mercy) and we all  (all 12,000 of us) prayed the divine mercy chaplet.  The music that accompanied the chaplet was so incredible that none of us have been able to get through an hour without singing it in our head all week.

After we left the shrine and checked into our hotel we drove through Stockbridge to get some dinner.  As we approached the town, there was a rainbow right over the shrine.  The rainbow was almost entirely a band of red and a band of yellow and clearly represented to us God’s pleasure with the day.

This will be a day all five of us are likely to remember for the rest of our lives.  More to come when I get the homily available to share.

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From my family to yours – May the blessings of the resurrection of our Lord be with you and your Family, now and forever!

When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary, the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go and anoint him. Very early when the sun had risen, on the first day of the week, they came to the tomb. They were saying to one another, “Who will roll back the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” When they looked up, they saw that the stone had been rolled back; it was very large. On entering the tomb they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a white robe, and they were utterly amazed. He said to them, “Do not be amazed! You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Behold the place where they laid him. But go and tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him, as he told you.'” Then they went out and fled from the tomb, seized with trembling and bewilderment. They said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.

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