24 Hour Adoration/Assumption Mass

Assumption_of_the_Blessed_Virgin_Mary_001This coming weekend we, the Gippsland Ordinariate are celebrating the Assumption of Mary.

We are holding vigil and adoration for twenty four hours ending with the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

For ALL Catholics, this is a Holy Day of Obligation.  As such, the Catechism states,”

On Sundays and other holy days of obligation, the faithful are to refrain from engaging in work or activities that hinder the worship owed to God.” CCC 2185
  • 14th August: Sunday: 24 hour adoration: Cowwarr
    • Starts: 11.00am:
    • Finishes: 11.00am:
  • 15th August: Mass: Assumption of Mary: 11am Cowwarr
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Musings from the Ordinary

Musings 22                                                                                                                        August 2016


Those of us who have come from an Anglican background are likely to have a sense of déjà-vu about some of the factional arguments going on in the Catholic Church at this time. Fr Longnecker, a former Anglican priest, now a diocesan Catholic priest in South Carolina, has recently written about why Catholics are disturbed, annoyed, restless and angry at this time (Patheos July 26th). He believes it is because we are passing through another time of Catholic realignment.

Since the Reformation the Anglican Communion has accommodated both the Protestant and Catholic understandings of Christianity, and in more recent times a Liberal protestant interpretation of the Faith has been added to the mix. In the present Church of England there is a ‘Church within a Church’ in the sense that those who support the ordination of women and those who don’t, claim to be Anglican, but they are not in communion with each other.

In the Catholic Church since Vatican II there has been the conservative and liberal ‘churches’, each with their own publishing houses, colleges, religious orders and members of the hierarchy. In the Anglican and Catholic Churches, liberals believe Christianity to be a human construct, which must adapt and change to the culture of the current age in order to be relevant and survive.

Conservatives or Traditionalists believe that the Christian Faith is revealed by God, has a continuity of development and is unfolded in a particular way in each generation. This means that the Faith cannot be changed, and if necessary, the Church must challenge the world when there is a clash between the secular and Christian cultures.

This explains why liberal Catholics believe that abortion, euthanasia, same sex marriage and the ordination of female and openly gay candidates are issues that the Church should embrace. Their traditionalist critics describe this as ‘Catholic-lite’ or pick and choose ‘cafeteria’ Catholicism that undermines the foundations of Catholicism and will lead to the collapse of the very Church to which the liberals claim to belong.

Fr Longnecker believes that the current turmoil is due to the fact that the messy truce between liberal and conservative Catholics has broken down. He says that the deliberations of Vatican II have been misinterpreted by the liberals and the ‘breath of fresh air’ that was hoped for by the Synod Fathers has become toxic. Put plainly, the ways of being Catholic since Vatican II don’t work anymore. The parish system has broken down, some Catholic institutions are hardly Catholic and so the ‘die-hards’ from both camps have retreated into the bunkers of factional fundamentalism as they die out.

The younger generation of lay, seminarian, ordained, Religious Catholics are not liberal because they have seen what the liberal embrace of secular values has done to the Church’s worship and social teaching. They want no part of it. They are looking for a balanced Catholic faith with worship through which they can experience God as transcendent as well as imminent, and which offers care and leadership to the faithful in social and justice issues. In Longnecker’s words, “they are, for the most part, simple, by the book, faithful Catholics.”

The realignment within the Catholic Church is going on, and while this is exciting it is also daunting because to journey into the unknown is an act of faith known to our forebears in their own age as God led them forward. Think of the patriarchs, prophets and saints of the Church who said ‘Yes’ to God, and allowed God to lead them into the unknown. Would we be people of faith today if they had not done so?

In Vive radio broadcasts in 1969, the then Professor Ratzinger, later Pope Benedict XVI, described his vision for the future of humanity and the Church. He compared the present age as being worse than the 18th century when the Church was fighting against the French republic that was intent on destroying the Catholic Church and confiscating its properties.

We too are living in a Western secularist culture that is intent on driving the Church out of having any influence in society and stripping it of all privileges in society. Given this onslaught, some priests are tempted to become social workers and reduce the work of the Church to one of community welfare.

Out of this crisis, Pope Emeritus Benedict predicted that a Church would emerge that has lost a great deal.

It will be small and will start all over again. The reduction in the number of the faithful will lead to its losing an important part in its social privileges. It will start off with small groups and movements and a ministry that will make the faith central to their life experience. It will be a more spiritual Church and will not claim a political mandate flirting with the Right one minute and the Left the next. It will be poor and will become the Church of the destitute. Faith and the Future (Ignatius Press)

The Ordinariates have been erected during the early period of this realignment in the Catholic Church, and its first members have come into full communion out of a similar realignment within the Anglican Communion. The Ordinariates are the consequence of another of Pope Emeritus Benedict’s visions for the Church. This time it is a vision for the Church’ unity. Is it too bold to pose the question whether in God’s inVinite wisdom, there is a link between the Church’s realignment and the erection of the Ordinariate? We have already witnessed the emergence of new Evangelistic Movements within the Church and new Religious communities and groups. Is the Ordinariate being called to show how it is possible to be faithful to the ‘faith once delivered to the saints’ defended by the Holy Father and the Magisterium, through our liturgy, prayerfulness, preaching and pastoral care, during this period of realignment?

These may be outrageous thoughts, but then, they may not be?

Jesus’ Church teaches everything that He taught with no omissions or alternations to suit the moods of differing times and places. No cafeteria picking and choosing. (P.18 Deep Conversion, Deep Faith)

In Christ

Monsignor Harry

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Newman – Liberalism the great error

In his speech, called now the Biglietto Speech, formalizing his appointment as Cardinal, Cardinal Henry Newman spoke about liberalism:

For thirty, forty, fifty years I have resisted to the best of my powers the spirit of liberalism in religion. Never did Holy Church need champions against it more sorely than now, when, alas! it is an error overspreading, as a snare, the whole earth;…

Cardinal Newman goes on to say:

Liberalism in religion is the doctrine that there is no positive truth in religion, but that one creed is as good as another, and this is the teaching which is gaining substance and force daily. It is inconsistent with any recognition of any religion, as true. It teaches that all are to be tolerated, for all are matters of opinion.Revealed religion is not a truth, but a sentiment and a taste; not an objective fact, not miraculous; and it is the right of each individual to make it say just what strikes his fancy. Devotion is not necessarily founded on faith. Men may go to Protestant Churches and to Catholic, may get good from both and belong to neither. They may fraternise together in spiritual thoughts and feelings, without having any views at all of doctrine in common, or seeing the need of them. Since, then, religion is so personal a peculiarity and so private a possession, we must of necessity ignore it in the intercourse of man with man. If a man puts on a new religion every morning, what is that to you? It is as impertinent to think about a man’s religion as about his sources of income or his management of his family. Religion is in no sense the bond of society.

And so what has changed since 1879.  Liberalism has grown and is now rampant, not only in society but in the church as well.  When Cardinal Newman spoke he spoke as if the Church. would not be infected, “I lament it deeply, because I foresee that it may be the ruin of many souls; but I have no fear at all that it really can do aught of serious harm to the Word of God, to Holy Church, to our Almighty King, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, Faithful and True, or to His Vicar on earth. ” And yet, we know that there are elements within the church that would see no objective truths in the statements of the church as codified in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.

What is occurring today is a form of ‘subjective relativism’ where there is not ‘One’ truth, but many.  Where there is not one God (but variations in belief), not one Church (but variations of Church), not one baptism (but variations of baptism), and if they preach ‘love, tolerance, and acceptance’ they are deemed right.  People have forgotten, in their urge to be nice and accommodating, that there is an objective reality which is TRUTH:

  • there is only one God;
  • there is only one way to holiness, through Christ “who is the way, the truth, and the life”;
  • that Christ died for love, so that my/your sin would not keep us from being eternally with the Father
  • that we need to repent, and be converted, each and every day
  • there is one Church instituted by Christ
  • there is one baptism – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit
  • there is one faith – expressed in the Creeds, and codfied in the Catechism of the Catholic Church in terms of faith and morals.

It is not about keeping oneself pure, it is about keeping oneself holy, and saving souls. We must be true to Christ, His Church, His Vicar, and the Magesterium s codified in the Catechism – if we are not then we spread error and untruth.   Watered down, liberal, subjective faith saves no one.  Faith that follows the saints, that is uncompromising in terms of faith and morals, and that actually believes in what has been given by Christ to the world is what is needed today.  I will leave the last word to Cardinal Newman;  “Commonly the Church has nothing more to do than to go on in her own proper duties, in confidence and peace; to stand still and to see the salvation of God. “The meek shall inherit the land and delight themselves in abundant peace” (Ps 37:11).

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Retreat day/s

If anyone is near Cowwarr and would like a Retreat day (silence from Mass till after Evening Prayer) then please join us.  It is a delightful day where we can be with God, in the company of other Catholics, and enjoy becoming closer to God.  If you cannot join us this time, there are two other days scheduled for this year the 17th September, and the 29th October.

Ordinariate Parish of the Most Holy Family
St Brigid’s Catholic Church, Cowwarr

Invites you to participate in

Retreat Day:  A Call to Holiness

Saturday: August 6th
9.30am – 4.00pm

Arrival in the Hall: 9.30am
Introduction: Fr Ken Clark OLSC 9.50am
Mass: 10am
1st Address: 10.30am
Quiet Time/reflection: 11.00am
Angelus: 12.00pm
Rosary after Angelus
Lunch (BYO): 1.00pm
2nd Address: 1.45pm
Quiet Time/confession: 2.15pm
Evening Prayer: 3.45pm
Close: 4.00pm

Retreat Conductor:Fred Hardy ThL (Honours) MA (Spirituality) MDiv

A Day of Stillness and Silence

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Catechism on the role of bishops

The role of bishops from the Catechism.  We need more that ‘teach us to unfailingly adhere to the faith’.

CCC 888Bishops, with priests as co-workers, have as their first task “to preach the Gospel of God to all men,” in keeping with the Lord’s command.415 They are “heralds of faith, who draw new disciples to Christ; they are authentic teachers” of the apostolic faith “endowed with the authority of Christ.”416

CCC 889 In order to preserve the Church in the purity of the faith handed on by the apostles, Christ who is the Truth willed to confer on her a share in his own infallibility. By a “supernatural sense of faith” the People of God, under the guidance of the Church’s living Magisterium, “unfailingly adheres to this faith.417

CCC 890 The mission of the Magisterium is linked to the definitive nature of the covenant established by God with his people in Christ. It is this Magisterium’s task to preserve God’s people from deviations and defections and to guarantee them the objective possibility of professing the true faith without error…

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What is offered in the Sacrifice, and our place

Fr. Hunwicke’s Blog:

“How many feel when they are assisting at Mass that they are kneeling at our Lord’s feet, beneath His Cross? That here is the offering which pleads for the whole world, for the sins of all, living and departed, the one offering of infinite worth we can make to “Our Father”, the one offering which enables us to say with a sure confidence: “Look on the Face of thy Son, and only look on us as found in Him”. Look on us who plead for the living and the dead that one Sacrifice offered by Him for all the sins of the world, past, present, and to come, that Offering by which Christ our Lord set Himself apart as the Victim for our salvation on the night of His Passion, that Offering completed on Calvary which is offered in all the plenitude of its power and efficacy wherever there is a priest to make the oblation of Christ’s Body and Blood, and which has constituted the one great and abiding  Sacrifice of the Christian Church since the Day of Pentecost. When this is not realized, no wonder that the altars of the Church are deserted. “I, if I am lifted up, will draw all men unto Me”. How, if there is no consciousness of that lifting up, no horror of the sins that necessitated so great an expiation, no sense of the need of the application of that expiation to ourselves, no perception that here and now the Lamb as it had been slain on Calvary is the one Offering that satisfies human needs and the cry of human souls? Surely, if there is any lack here, this is the point which most demands attention; surely here is the supreme object towards which all our efforts at improvement should be directed.”

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From the Ordinary – Musings 21

Mass as Sacrifice (My title)

We have just celebrated the Solemnity of Corpus Christi, the Body and Blood of Christ. In this celebration we tend to focus on the sacramental Body of Christ which the faithfad orientumul receive during the Mass. Yet the Church can only claim that the sacramental host is the Body of Christ because during the Last Supper, Jesus took bread, blessed, broke and shared it with his disciples saying, “This is my body which is given for you. Take and eat it in remembrance of me.” Unlike the Greeks who considered Flesh and spirit to be separate entities, the Jews consider them to be a unity. So in saying these words Jesus is saying, “This is me which is given for you.” It is the whole of Jesus, body and spirit, that we receive in the sacred host and precious blood. When he said these words, Jesus was foreshadowing his offering of himself as a sacrifice for the salvation of the world.

The offering of humans as a sacrifice to the gods has been part of the tradition of pagan cultures. Abram was asked to sacrifice Isaac as a test of his obedience to God, but as we know, he was forbidden to carry this out at the last minute and told to sacrifice an animal instead. This practice of substitutionary animal sacrifice continued in the life of God’s people at the time of Passover as an atonement for the sins of God’s people.

This offering of animals as a sacrifice was a pointer to the one, complete sacrifice in which Jesus the Son of God offered himself for the salvation of the whole world. In the Christian mass, the sacrifice of Christ’s incarnate body on the cross is remembered and brought into the present moment and we the faithful, who are the Body of Christ on earth, receive the benefits of that sacrifice to enable us to to continue the mission that Jesus shares with his Church.

So the incarnate body of Jesus, his Sacramental body in the sacred host, and his body the Church, are all connected. Jesus’ earthly body was blessed and broken on the Cross so that his love poured out there might draw people to himself. The eucharistic host is taken, blessed, broken and shared so that those who receive it, receive Jesus himself and the beneFits of salvation he won for us. We faithful of the Church, his body on earth, should respond to Jesus’ love and gifts by offering ourselves to be a living sacrifice, willing to be broken in his service in the world so that others may come to know and love him.

The sacrifice of Jesus is central to Christian worship, yet to many people the idea of sacrifice is repulsive. Even within the Church, some Catholics no longer see the mass as a sacrifice because they consider this to be barbaric and superstitious. Instead they see the mass as a fellowship meal, focussing on the sayings of Jesus during the Last Supper about the need for us to love one another. They sideline the truth that there is no greater love than to lay down one’s life in the service of others either literally or metaphorically.

It is much easier for people’s understanding of the mass to be shifted from the sacrifice of Jesus to that of a shared fellowship meal if the priest celebrates facing the people standing behind a small ‘table like’ altar in a ‘fan-shaped’ building. When the music at mass centres on fellowship, togetherness, love and praise, the focus shifts from the worship of God to the unity of the worshipping community and how the world can be made a better place.

The adoption of these liturgical and theological emphases has caused a loosening of the idea of sacrifice in the mass. When the priest faces the people when speaking to them about God, and facing with them towards the crucifix when addressing God, the understanding of the mass as a sacrifice is easier to grasp. When communion is received kneeling on the tongue, it is easier to appreciate that we are receiving Jesus himself than when we receive the sacrament standing in a queue.

Sacrifice lies in the centre of the mystery of God. It is the total offering of ourselves and this reveals to us who God is. God sacrifice himself for us, and our response must be to sacrifice ourselves in his service. This is the love Jesus told us to practice during the Last Supper.

The Ordinariates have been given our own distinctive liturgy with its emphasis on the sacrifice of Jesus in its words and action. One of the gifts we can offer to the wider Western Rite Catholic community is to be a witness to the true meaning of sacrifice and show how this enables us to worship God and enter into his mystery. Only then will a spiritual renewal in the Church be possible.

“We ought not to be weary of doing little things for the love of God, who regards not the greatness of the work, but the love with which it is performed.”
 Brother HYPERLINK  “https://www.goodreads.com/work/quotes/2133549”  Lawrence, The Practice of

It is a hard mission, but one we have been called to undertake.

Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten. Those who seek God shall never go wanting Nothing can trouble, nothing can frighten. God alone

”Taizé chant based on St Teresa of Avila’s prayer

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