Saturday, May 26, 2018

Random thoughts on a Saturday night



  • One of my earliest memories from childhood is of being taken by my godmother to St. Mary Mother of God church in DC and being awed by a pieta similar to this one.










  • Rocky and I came home from church this evening and he noticed that birds all seemed disturbed. I didn't see any hawks but something had them agitated. A few minutes later when we inside the sky became very dark and there was heavy rain. The birds sensed what was coming. God's creation is simply amazing.


  • Prince Harry of England went through a parody of a wedding to a woman who is already married and some Catholic bloggers went completely gooey.  That was disappointing.



  • It's hiring season at my job and at many law firms around the country. I've seen bright and shiny young men and women come in and I've heard  parts of the evaluations afterwards. Here's one tip that is often overlooked: Don't be satisfied in just glancing at the firm website. Read everything you can about the firm you're applying to. Do a a litigation history check on Westlaw and see what the majority of the firm's cases are. Pay close attention to the partner bios because they'll tell you what they are most proud of in their career and often times what activities outside the firm that he or she is devoted to. If it's a huge firm you should at least read a selection of bios from each practice group. Be ready to explain what it is about this particular firm that you love and why you want to be a part of it.  These are simple things but ignoring them has caused more than one candidate to be cut from the second round of interviews.


  • Working in Washington DC means that you never know what Catholic personality you might run into.  It's a small city and the Catholic areas are concentrated. I've met Cardinal McCarrick on the street, sat in the same pew with Raymond Arroyo, noticed George Wiegel heading to Mass and observed Charles Coulombe after Mass.




Saturday, May 19, 2018

St. Paul VI? Are you kidding me?

The Vatican announced that Pope VI will be canonized in October. How can this be? Read both these books and be sure to have a bottle of Pepto-Bismol right by your side when you do.

   

Friday, May 18, 2018

Friday, May 11, 2018

Saint Bonaventure has something to tell you.

If you learn everything except Christ, you learn nothing. If you learn nothing except Christ, you learn everything.
~ St. Bonaventure

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Cardinal Dolan never misses a chance to disappoint

When I saw the photos from the Met Gala I thought that the one good thing was that Cardinal Dolan wasn't there. Well he was.  I don't expect much from Cardinal Dolan. He loves the spotlight. He loves glitter and glam and he wants to be with the cool kids but this......damn.  Our Lord's Sacred Heart was mocked. Our Lady's Sorrowing and Immaculate heart was mocked. The Bride of Christ, His Church that He suffered the Passion for and died for was mocked.  




Please don't give me the mealey mouthed excuse of  "Oh well Jesus ate with sinners." When Our Lord ate with tax collectors and prostitutes those poor sinners were so moved by Him that they changed their lives forever.  Where in the Gospels does it say that Our Lord partied with sinners and then sent them on their ways to continue living the same sinful life?  Our Lord did not tell Mary Magdalene to tone it down a bit. He cast devils out of her and she became a great saint. Matthew, the tax collector left his wealth and followed Christ. He accepted hardship, danger, discomfort and martyrdom for love of Jesus. Cardinal Dolan had a fun time with blasphemers and  claims to have been honored to have been invited. After the gala he cheerfully said that  he didn't see anything sacrilegious and " I may have seen some things in poor taste - but I didn't detect anybody out to offend the Church."   Really? Your Eminence, you are not blind and neither are the laity who you are supposed to be teaching.  Even though the Vatican approved of this event and lent items (sacramentals?)  for the displays you didn't have to be there having a wonderful time. 




Tuesday, May 08, 2018

In reparation for insults to the Blessed Mother

When I saw (warning sacrilegious photo)  this I was not surprised but I was disgusted.  The cool, pretty people in New York decided to turn the Met Gala into an abomination  instead of the usual celebration of vulgarity and ugliness and Fr. Martin S.J.was there to show how hip he is.



In reparation for this filth I pray :

 Lord, forgive all reviling of Mary's name! 

We beseech Thee, hear us! 
 Lord, forgive all contempt of her Immaculate Conception! 
We beseech Thee, hear us! 
Lord, forgive all coldness in the honoring of Mary! 
We beseech Thee, hear us! 
Lord, forgive all contempt of Mary's pictures! 
We beseech Thee, hear us! 
Lord, forgive all neglect of the Holy Rosary! 
We beseech Thee, hear us! 
Lord, forgive all indifference to Mary's Motherly love! 

Sunday, May 06, 2018

Art from Christians in the Holy Land

If you'd like to buy one of the gorgeous olive wood and Mother of Pearl carvings or other items made by the struggling Christians in the Holy Land check these links out.  I particularly like the sterling Jerusalem Cross necklaces at the Franciscan monastery.


 Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land in America gift shop

Holy Land Treasures


Bethlehem Wood Carving 


Bethlehem Christian Families




Saturday, May 05, 2018

A prayer for the redemption of bad priests

Divine Savior Jesus Christ, Thou are the Good Shepherd who gives His life for His sheep. Oh, be in a very special way the Good Shepherd of those poor lost priests who are also appointed by Thee to be leaders of Thy people, but who have broken the oath of their holy ordination and have become unfaithful to their exalted calling. Bestow upon these poorest of the poor the very fullness of that pastoral solicitude with which Thou dost so faithfully seek the sheep that are lost! Touch their hearts with the irresistible ray of grace which emanates from Thine all-merciful love! Enlighten their minds and strengthen their wills, that they may turn away from all sin and error and come back to Thy holy altar and to Thy people. O most compassionate Savior! Remember that Thou didst once redeem the souls of Thine erring priests with Thy Precious Blood and in infinite preferential love didst impress upon them the indelible character of the priesthood. Put wholly to shame those miserable helpers of Satan who lay snares for the virtue of priests and endanger the holy ideal of the priesthood. Most graciously accept our prayers and sacrifices for poor priests who have gone astray and hear our earnest petition.
 Amen 
Imprimatur - Bishop John F. Noll (April 18, 1948)

St. Anthony of Padua, defender of the Holy Eucharist, obtain for us holy priests
St. John-Mary Vianney, model of sacerdotal holiness, obtain for us holy priests

St. Francis Xavier, patron of missionary priests, obtain for us holy priests
St. Therese of the Child-Jesus and of the Holy Face, victim offered for the sanctification of priests, obtain for us holy priests

Saints and Servants of God, obtain for us holy priests.

Well that was depressing

A few days ago I read a post in a news forum that is supposedly Christian, by a Catholic living in Jerusalem. He said that things are very hard and that frankly the ultra Orthodox Israelis are pretty vocal and sometimes physical about their hatred of Christians. The comments were depressing. There was not one word of support for the Catholics. It was obvious that most of the people who commented believe in the Scofield Bible and were of the John Hagee persuasion. They accused the Catholics of lying or of being anti-Semitic or of not being helpful.  I've noticed that many American Christians are either ignorant of the plight of Christians in the Middle East or find the Christians to be inconvenient and embarrassing because the Christians of the Middle East don't fit into their political world view.
I've said it before and I'll say it again now. It's shameful that with  the exceptions of the Franciscans, (the Knights of the Holy Sepulcher--I originally forgot about them)  and the Knights of Columbus,  most of the concern and assistance to Christians in the Middle East seems to be coming from the Eastern Orthodox.  I rarely see Western Catholics say a word about their suffering brethren.




Wednesday, May 02, 2018

random thoughts on a Wednesday night


  • Rest in peace, Fr. Cooper. Several years ago I watched his catechism class that a parishioner posted on YouTube. It was excellent. I remember thinking how incredible it would be if priests in parishes all around the country spoke like he did.






  • Every now and then some dear soul will ask why Black people overwhelmingly vote Democrat. Well, if you were going to lose your friends, your family's affection and have your life and or livelihood threatened unless you vote a certain way what would you do? 

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Eternal rest....

Pray for us, little Alfie Evans. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Hungry

Little Alfie Evans has gone 36 hours without being fed. Think how you would feel if you skipped two meals and imagine what this is doing to him. In England they'll arrest you for harsh language towards certain groups or for having a pocket knife but the government will starve a sick baby to death. People are calling on Queen Elizabeth to say something but there's no point in that. It's widely rumored that her father was euthanized  and so was one of her uncles who was a child at the time. England is said to be the mother country of the euthanasia movement and committing suicide in some circumstances has long been looked upon with approval. It's part of the upper class culture. One of he saddest things about this whole tragedy is that the archbishop of Liverpool where the Evans family is from has not offered even a weak word of comfort to them. There is an Italian priest with the family but apparently no  priest from their own diocese dares come say a prayer in front of the hospital much less attempt to visit the sick.  Archbishop McMahon may not realize but I suspect that he's scandalized many people both Catholic and those who might have become Catholic.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Rude questions

Is it really necessary for the pope to have Q&A sessions? Is there something in Church law that says when the pope visits a parish it has to be filmed? Doesn't anybody find these stage managed manipulative shows to be distasteful? Did anyone in the Vatican blush with shame or anger at seeing this child being used like this? 


Sunday, April 15, 2018

Eternal Rest grant unto him

Today is the anniversary of my father's death. He was 42 years old. Mama was 40. I was 13.  There is nothing on earth like the moment when you realize that you have nowhere to run, nothing to distract you from the pain and you can't go back because it's the end of your world. All you can do is press on and cling to God. 


Réquiem ætérnam dona eis, Dómine,

et lux perpétua lúceat eis.
Requiéscant in pace. Amen.








Sunday, April 08, 2018

random thoughts on a Sunday afternoon


  • The death of Brother Anthony Freeman made me quite sad. He was born in the same year as my marriage and was young enough to be my son. Some people are saying that since he died in Rome and was a Legionnaire of Christ his death must be suspicious. I would say the non violent, non obviously accidental unattended death of a 29 year old must be checked out, period. Considering that there are evil men in the Vatican and the fact that many a seminarian has come back home with tales of sexual advances* being made to them by rectors, bishops and cardinals it's legitimate to raise an eyebrow about this death but be careful. Brother Anthony was presumably not an orphan and his parents are in great pain right now. If you are going to write certain things about him at least have the decency to offer some circumstantial evidence to back it up please.
  • The asinine claim that Latin American Catholics are going to save the Church in America because they are so much more devout that we are has pretty much died. Too many people have seen abominations like this to be fooled anymore. 


  • Here is a palate cleanser. This homily from a solid priest asks why it is that the media always comes up with crap during Holy Week or before Christmas?



*A childhood friend of mine left the seminary because he couldn't take the sexual shenanigans he was witness too and it broke his heart to see that nobody in the order was doing anything about it. 

Sunday, April 01, 2018

How was your Triduum?


Rocky and I discovered something new this year: naps. Taking one before Mass on Holy Thursday and before going to the Easter Vigil was a huge help. On Holy Thursday Rocky ushered at our parish. It went pretty well.

On Good Friday we went to the Franciscan Monastery for the Burial of Christ and saw two people from our parish. We saw Dominicans, Franciscans of course, Sister Servants of the Virgin, Missionaries of Charity and a couple of orders we couldn't identify as well as worshipers from all over the world. We went to a parish in DC  for the Easter Vigil because they have the earliest one on the area and we couldn't make it to St. Alphonsus in Baltimore.  I won't name the parish because they have a kind priest and really nice people. The Exultet and the Litany of the Saints  were done in a funky blues style. Yes. You did read that correctly. I've looked on Youtube and can't find anything remotely like what we heard.  Rocky looked stunned and gave me the fish eye a couple of times. The Communion Hymn was Nothing But the Blood of Jesus. The recessional hymn was Celebrate Jesus.





He is risen


Friday, March 30, 2018

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Thursday

The Protestations of St. Peter


Can Ye Not Watch With Me One Hour?



Peter Went Out and Wept Bitterly

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Spy Wednesday

Judas goes to the Chief Priests
The painter, James Tissot does something really clever here. The man in the foreground, should  probably a temple priest or pharisee and presumably agrees with what is happening but he can't help but look disgusted and has found some reason to the leave the room. Tissot uses this unknown man to show the horror of what Judas is doing....selling out the Lord for such a paltry amount, the price of a slave at a time in the world where the supply of slaves was constant and they were very cheap.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Tuesday

Gentiles Ask To See Jesus by James Tissot
The Cornerstone

Woe Unto You Scribes and  Pharisees


Monday, March 26, 2018

Monday

The Chief Priests Take Counsel Together by James Tissot 

The Accursed Fig Tree
Driving Out Them That Sold In the Temple
The Healing of the Lame in the Temple
Jesus Goes Out To Bethany In The Evening

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Benedict Does NOT Equal Francis

Palm Sunday

  • All this week I've been reading that Benedict was never the orthodox prelate whom we thought he was and that he's really just Francis with class. That is hyperbole. Joseph Ratzinger was never mean, he was never crude and not a single person has come forward to tell a story about how Fr. Ratzinger used to swear and scream when he was unhappy or that he mocked them for being pious. 

     Maybe Pope Benedict was just a nice conservative, okay I'll accept that. Church and a social conservatives haven't won a single battle in 50 years but they've tossed off some cute witticisms and I  think deep down the leaders are content with that and many of them dislike the embarrassing Trads more than the out right heretics. Pope Benedict may not have had the courage or ammunition to fight the St. Gallen mafia and it probably would have been better for him if he had refused the papacy to begin with, but I don't think he's sipping on a beer in his apartment thinking, " Francis and I sure fooled those suckers. Hah!" 

Saturday, March 24, 2018

A PRAYER FOR THE REDEMPTION OF BAD PRIESTS

Divine Savior Jesus Christ, Thou are the Good Shepherd who gives His life for His sheep. Oh, be in a very special way the Good Shepherd of those poor lost priests who are also appointed by Thee to be leaders of Thy people, but who have broken the oath of their holy ordination and have become unfaithful to their exalted calling. Bestow upon these poorest of the poor the very fullness of that pastoral solicitude with which Thou dost so faithfully seek the sheep that are lost! Touch their hearts with the irresistible ray of grace which emanates from Thine all-merciful love! Enlighten their minds and strengthen their wills, that they may turn away from all sin and error and come back to Thy holy altar and to Thy people. O most compassionate Savior! Remember that Thou didst once redeem the souls of Thine erring priests with Thy Precious Blood and in infinite preferential love didst impress upon them the indelible character of the priesthood. Put wholly to shame those miserable helpers of Satan who lay snares for the virtue of priests and endanger the holy ideal of the priesthood. Most graciously accept our prayers and sacrifices for poor priests who have gone astray and hear our earnest petition.
 Amen 
Imprimatur - Bishop John F. Noll (April 18, 1948)

St. Anthony of Padua, defender of the Holy Eucharist, obtain for us holy priests
St. John-Mary Vianney, model of sacerdotal holiness, obtain for us holy priests

St. Francis Xavier, patron of missionary priests, obtain for us holy priests
St. Therese of the Child-Jesus and of the Holy Face, victim offered for the sanctification of priests, obtain for us holy priests

Saints and Servants of God, obtain for us holy priests.

Friday, March 16, 2018

The Letter

What are we to make of Pope Benedict's letter defending Pope Francis as a theologian? Some people say that the letter doesn't sound like Benedict at all and must be fake or he was forced to write it. The fact that the Vatican chose to crudely blur the last two lines of the letter raises alarms.  Hilary White and Steven Skojec  on the other hand, say that Benedict was never what we thought he was and yes, he either wrote the  letter or at least was content to sign what the ghost writer gave him and he is probably just fine with Francis.

 Both Hilary and Steve got gruff to the point of stinging insult with anyone who disagreed with them on Twitter. Who's right? What the Hell is going on? I don't know. All I can say is that Benedict is very old and practically helpless. He's said to be partially blind and prone to falling and he's suffered a dramatic and obvious physical decline. Perhaps if one decent person could go to his chambers with a cell phone, press record and implore, "Speak Papa! Why did you abandon us?," we might learn something but that's not going to happen. Even if someone was bold enough to do it I doubt that the cell phone would make it beyond the Vatican walls or even as far as an elevator.
I am sure of one thing: if you are expecting Benedict to come to the rescue then you will die a disappointed man or woman.  He's too frail now and if it's true, as some whisper that he abdicated as part of a separate peace to protect himself and/or his brother then he's definitely out of the fight.  Lord have mercy.





Saturday, March 10, 2018

Things that make you go eww.





  • Taylor Marshall, whom I do not care for, says he had a vision of a good looking but sick woman with engorged breasts. Her babies were too afraid to nurse because the mother is poisoned. In the vision Taylor heard a voice tell him that yes Mother is sick but go ahead and eat because the milk is pure.  I watched Mr. Marshall's video twice and I don't know what to make of it. My first reaction was to be repulsed. Taylor you went full Christoper West. Never go full Christopher West.  My second reaction was exasperation. Yes, Holy Mother Church is in a bad, bad way but if  you follow, not trends or heresies but the holy teaching of the Church you won't go wrong. You don't need a vision that sounds like Japanese anime porn to see that. Heck all you have to do is open your eyes and read. 


  • After reading this  about the Vatican Easter stamp and how the image of Our Lord makes the heart of "women" flutter, one can only come the conclusion that much of the German hierarchy and their slimy underlings need to be forced to sit down in a locked room and have St. Peter Damian's book read to them ----and what is this disgusting fetish some people seem to have about Archbishop Gänswein’s appearance?

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

God loves us so much




That He sent His only Son  
to bear this passion for us
and Jesus loves each one of  us so much that 
that He would go this again to save us


What wondrous love. I am struck with awe. May you have a truly blessed Lent.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

random thoughts on a Saturday

  • I guess I'll be the skunk at the garden party but somebody has to say it, the Reverend Billy Graham was not Catholic. Some of the Catholic prelates and writers who are doing a folk canonization of him should mention that.



  • I was reading a Catholic discussion page and saw disapproving comments about the woman who reads the news on the SSPX videos. The poster and one other seemed to find her too sexy. I looked at the video and all I can say is that if this well dressed, dignified young woman strikes you as a scantily clad temptress then dude, you need to take a trip to Saudi Arabia and don't come back until you get whatever's eating you purged out of your system.



  • It looks like Paul VI is going to be made a saint. This is weird to me because I vaguely remember that when he died  none of the adults seemed unhappy.  Granted, no sensible adult was going to go into a weeping jag in front of little kids but there didn't seem to be any feeling about the man at all. There does not appear to be a genuine cultus around him. Although there is a Paul VI High School in my diocese I've never met anyone whose prayer group or knight's council is named after Paul VI.  Except for the smoke of Satan quote I've never heard anyone quote him either from the pulpit or in a parish hall lecture. I've never had a nun in elementary or high school say, "Remember what Pope Paul VI said about ...". Even the people who bang on about Humanae Vitae seem to be oddly apologetic and frame it as the one good thing Paul did.  I've come across groups that are working for the cause of canonization of Fr. Augustus Tolton, Mother Mary Lange, Mother Henriette Delille, Archbishop Sheen and Cora Evans but I've never seen online or met anyone who was wildly passionate about promoting the cause of Pope Paul VI.


  • When I saw this tweet from Cardinal Tobin I wondered if he wasn't attempting humor. He says  "baby" is one of his eight younger sisters. Judging from the comment section in all the news sites I've come across that are covering the tweet, nobody really believes him.  I suspect the cardinal will be more careful in his communications with his intimates in the future.




Friday, February 23, 2018

God bless Cardinal Zen

“Yesterday not a few individuals came to see me or telephoned me to offer me some comfort, following the accusation made against me by the spokesman for the Vatican. But they have misunderstood, because I do not need to be comforted. It would have been better for them to have gone to comfort that spokesman. He is the one who is a caged bird, forced to perform such an embarrassing rôle.”  
                                                                                              Cardinal Zen of China


The cardinal is an old man who has seen much tragedy in his life. Seeing him and the Chinese Catholics being sold out is intensely shameful.

Monday, February 19, 2018

The Hours of the Passion, Lenten Reading

I just found a wonderful little book by Fr. Jude Mead called The Hours of the Passion




Fr. Sarda Y Salvany has a few things to say to you...

Many Catholics, by far too naive (even some engaged in Catholic journalism), are perpetually seeking to pose as impartial and are perpetually daubing themselves with a veneer of flattery. They lustily beat the bass drum and blow all the trumpets of their vocabulary in praise of no matter what work, literary or scientific, that comes from the Liberal camp. They are fearful of being considered narrow-minded and partial if they do not give the devil his due. In the fulsomeness of their flattery, they hope to show that it costs a Catholic nothing to recognize merit wherever it may be found; they imagine this to be a powerful means of attracting the enemy. Alas, the folly of the weaklings; they play a losing game; it is they who are insensibly attracted, not the enemy! They simply fly at the bait held out by the cunning fisher who satanically guides the destinies of Liberalism.
Let us illustrate. When Arnold's Light of Asia appeared, not a few Catholics joined in the chorus of fulsome praise which greeted it. How charming, how beautiful, how tender, how pathetic, how humane; what lofty morality, what exquisite sentiment! Now what was the real purport of the book and what was its essence? To lift up Guatama, the founder of Buddhism, at the expense of Jesus Christ, the Founder of Christianity! 

..... Here was a work of literary merit, although it has been greatly exaggerated in this respect, praised extravagantly by some Catholics who, in their excessive desire to appear impartial, failed or refused to see in Edwin Arnold's Light of Asia a most vicious, anti-Christian book! What difference does it make whether a book be excellent in a literary sense or not, if its effect be the loss of souls and not their salvation? What if the weapon in the hands of the assassin be bright or not, if it be fatal? Though spiritual assassination be brilliant, it is nonetheless deadly.....


Si quis non amat Dominum Nostrum Jesum Christum, Sit anathema ["If anyone does not love the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be anathema"], says St. Paul. Liberal literature is the written hatred of Our Lord and His Church. If its blasphemy were open and direct, no Catholic would tolerate it for an instant; is it any more tolerable because, like a courtesan, it seeks to disguise its sordid features by the artifice of paint and powder?

Excerpts from Chapter 18 of Liberalism is a Sin by Fr. Felix Sarda Y Salvany  
(Bolded emphasize is mine)

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Public High School is a Misery Factory

I know. I know. Somebody just read that and rolled their eyes so hard it gave them a headache but let's be honest about this. You have a thousand kids trapped in a prison-like building with kids who are mean and crazy and teachers who either frequently sadistic, useless, burned out or just trying to survive the day until their retirement--I have several teachers in my family and both my father and mother in law taught in suburban Virginia schools. They all had stories that would curl your hair. Why is there so much misery at school? Well, it's cruelly designed system. Education is not the main point of high school or even elementary school for that matter. Babysitting and molding children to whatever society says is cool right now is the point.

 Talk to ten people who object to home schooling, private school or the hiring of professional teachers to come to your home and teach your child and they will all huff and sputter about "socialization."  What's socialization? Mostly it seems to be about crushing kids until they are like everybody else. If  your kid is a square peg in a round hole he will be picked at  and drugged if need be until he fits in that square peg or at least sits there quietly and doesn't get on the teacher's nerves. If your kid doesn't spout propaganda about the goodness of abortion  and the superiority of homosexuals then he will be harassed until he complies. This has nothing to do with education.

Ask ten people what they remember fondly about school and they'll mention the prom, being on the sports team, watching the football or basketball game, the homecoming parade or band or drama class. None of that aforementioned stuff has anything to do with academics. Highly ritualized and controlled social life is also part of the  molding process  and it functions like that of a hyena pack. Once your child gets "assigned" his place in the hierarchy of the pack that's it. Forever. If your child is an alpha or one of the cool kids in the core of the pack or even the Lone Wolf-but-we-like-him kid then things will be okay. If the cool kids decide that your child is  the one who all members of the pack may vent their hostility on that's it. Forever. In Disney movies the cool kids learn to like the outcast but it doesn't happen like that in real life. You can go to school and beg the teachers to watch your child and the threat of expulsion can be used to force the other's to leave their victim in peace but that's the best you can do. As I said before, I've heard a lot of teacher's candid stories. This will shock you but it's not uncommon for teachers to look a child who has been rejected by the pack the same way a farmer does who finds a piglet or lamb that has been rejected by it's mother. The farmer must decide if it's worth it to intervene or let nature take it's course.

In order to get your kid out of a bad situation you have to leave the school district. Most parents either can't or won't pack up and move abruptly so the misery goes on and since it's a rite of passage  that most of us went through, and turned out just fine (?), many parents unconsciously feel that they survived and their child is going to be a misfit if they aren't tough enough to survive it too. Why do we do this and how did it get this inhuman?

Saturday, February 17, 2018

The Communicantes Saints


We pray in union with and honor the memory, especially of the glorious ever Virgin Mary, mother of our God and Lord Jesus Christ: as also of the blessed Joseph, her Spouse, and of the blessed Apostles and Martyrs Peter and Paul, Andrew, James, John, Thomas, James, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Simon, and Thaddeus; Linus, Cletus, Clement, Xystus, Cornelius, Cyprian, Lawrence, Chrysogonus, John and Paul, Cosmas and Damian, and of all Thy Saints, through whose merits and prayers, grant that we may in all things be defended by the help of Thy protection.  Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.


The Communicántes prayer is said during the Canon of the Mass shortly before the Consecration. 
We are familiar with Our Lady, St. Joseph and the Apostles but except for St. Lawrence,the second set of saints are less studied by today's Catholics. 



What must it have been like to be the second pope? Tradition tells us that Linus was a Roman who converted after hearing St. Peter preach and became a disciple. He is only pope who was chosen by his predecessor. He  witnessed Peter's crucifixion and helped to bury his body. Pope St. Linus was martyred by beheading in 76.


Cletus was the third pope. He was also converted by St. Peter. He wrote the first papal letters to the Faith and was martyred in 89.


Pope St. Clement was a high born Roman  and like Linus and Cletus, he met St. Peter was converted. According to tradition, Clement made a point of recording the details of the trials and martyrdom of Christians brought before the Roman persecutors. In 96 he  wrote a letter to the fractious congregation of Corinth. He was exiled during the Trajan persecution and eventually martyred by drowning.



Pope St. Sixtus must have known that his life would end in martyrdom but he did not shirk from becoming pope. He is credited with the decree that none but the priest should touch the sacred vessels.



 Cornelius was a Roman priest. He became pope at a time when the persecutions were so bad that the clergy and people of Rome could not get together to elect a pope for 14 months. When he was elected he had to deal with a heretic, an anti-pope and the serious question of how to deal with laity and clergy who had apostatized during the persecution oDecius. Emperor Gallus banished Cornelius to Cevita Vecchia where he kept up a correspondence with St. Cyprian and converted a large number of pagans before his martyrdom.



Cyprian was a bishop and a devoted friend of St. Cornelius. He came from a well to do family in Carthage and is said to have been highly educated man who gave it all up to become a Christian. He was put to the sword in the year 258.



Saint Lawrence is one the most famous and beloved of the early saints and he's the most familiar saint from the Roman Canon to most people. He was the archdeacon to Pope St. Sixtus II and when the holy pope was being dragged to his execution St. Lawrence asked to go with him. Pope Sixtus told him that he would come after him in three days. Lawrence was arrested and tortured horribly all night before finally being placed on the gridiron.




Not much is known about St. Chrysogonus. He was a Roman layman who converted many people by his example and he was the teacher of  St. Anastasia, who went through many trials when she decided to follow Christ. Chysogonus was martyred under Emperor Diocletian.




John and Paul were brothers. They had high places at court and devoted themselves and their wealth to helping the poor. Out of spite Julian the Apostate asked them to join his household and offer sacrifice to the old gods. They refused and received the crown of martyrdom.




Saints Cosmas and Damian were twins and physicians whose piety impressed many people who converted because of their example. They were martyred by beheading under Diocletian.