Saturday, October 15, 2005

From Parochial and Plain Sermons
by Venerable John Henry Newman

I am quite sure that none of us, even the best, have resisted the world as we ought to have done. Our faces have not been like flints; we have been afraid of men's words, and dismayed at their looks, and we have yielded to them at times against our better judgment. We have fancied, forsooth, the world could do us some harm while we kept to the commandments of God. Let us search our consciences; let us look back on our past lives. Let us try to purify and cleanse our hearts in God's sight. Let us try to live more like Christians, more like children of God. Let us earnestly beg of God to teach us more simply and clearly what our duty is. Let us beg of Him to give us the heart to love Him, and true repentance for what is past. Let us beg Him to teach us how to confess Him before men; lest if we deny Him now, He may deny us before the Angels of God hereafter.
The Feast of St. Teresa of Avila, O.C.D., Virgin and Doctor of the Church
is today. There is information on her here.
May God bless all the Carmelites out there, including the nuns at the Carmel in Loretto, PA, and this blogger !

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The Catholic Carnival
is up.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Due to Real Life...
blogging will be sparse this week.
The Feast of St. Francis Borgia, S.J., Priest
is today. There is information on him here.

When people think of bad popes, the first name that comes into their heads is Pope Alexander the Sixth. Do you remember what his surname was ? Borgia. And if you look up your Missal you will find that today?s feast is the feast of St. Francis - Borgia. Same family, you see, but a different type. St. Francis Borgia, even before he entered the Society of Jesus, used to make a five hours meditation first thing every morning, and that takes some doing. So far from administering poison to other people, St. Francis's efforts seem to have been largely directed to making his own food taste nasty. When he had to take a pill he always sucked it; not because he couldn't make it go down, but because he thought it would be a good punishment for his sins; he was very strong on his sins, though nobody else could quite make out what they were. The cook put wormwood in the soup one day, by mistake, and St. Francis didn't rush down the passage shouting, "Where's that cook ? "-he thanked the cook and said, "God bless you, you are the only person who seems to understand the kind of food that really suits me".

Msgr. Ronald Knox, The Creed in Slow Motion

Sunday, October 09, 2005

On this date, 160 years ago....
Venerable John Henry Newman was received into the Catholic Church by Blessed Dominic Barberi, C.P., Priest .

One of my friends at Littlemore had been received into the Church on Michaelmas Day, at the Passionist House, at Aston, near Stone, by Father Dominic, the Superior. At the beginning of October the latter was passing through London to Belgium, and, as I was in some perplexity what steps to take for being received myself, I assented to the proposition made to me, that the good priest should take Littlemore in his way, with a view to his doing for me the same charitable service as he had done to my friend.

On October the 8th I wrote to a number of friends the following letter:—

"Littlemore, October 8th, 1845. I am this night expecting Father Dominic, the Passionist, who, from his youth, has been led to have distinct and direct thoughts, first of the countries of the North, then of England. After thirty years' (almost) waiting, he was, without his own act, sent here. But he has had little to do with conversions. I saw him here for a few minutes on St. John Baptist's day last year.

"He is a simple, holy man; and withal gifted with remarkable powers. He does not know of my intention; but I mean to ask of him admission into the one Fold of Christ … "

For a while after my reception, I proposed to betake myself to some secular calling ... [But] soon, Dr. Wiseman, in whose Vicariate Oxford lay, called me to Oscott; and I went there with others; afterwards he sent me to Rome, and finally placed me in Birmingham ... I left Oxford for good on Monday, February 23, 1846. On the Saturday and Sunday before I was in my House at Littlemore, simply by myself, as I had been for the first day or two when I had originally taken possession of it. I slept on Sunday night at my dear friend's, Mr. Johnson's, at the Observatory. Various friends came to see the last of me; Mr. Copeland, Mr. Church, Mr. Buckle, Mr. Pattison, and Mr. Lewis. Dr. Pusey, too, came up to take leave of me; and I called on Dr. Ogle, one of my very oldest friends, for he was my private Tutor, when I was an Undergraduate. In him I took leave of my first College, Trinity, which was so dear to me, and which held on its foundation so many who had been kind to me, both when I was a boy, and all through my Oxford life. Trinity had never been unkind to me. There used to be much snapdragon growing on the walls opposite my freshman's rooms there, and I had for years taken it as the emblem of my own perpetual residence even unto death in my University. On the morning of the 23rd I left the Observatory. I have never seen Oxford since, excepting its spires, as they are seen from the railway.

Venerable John Henry Newman, C.O. Apologia Pro Vita Sua

Lane Core has some fine posts on this event...(BTW, Lane, happy annivesary !)
If it were not Sunday...
today would be the feast of St. Denis, one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers.
It would also be the feast of the Martyrs of Turón , who were killed in the persecutions of the Spanish Civil War.