Archive for October, 2005


October 30, 2005

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Click on the above link for an excellent site explaining and illustrating Mexico’s colourful traditions during this time in the religious calendar.


All Souls’ Day

October 30, 2005

Catholic Encyclopedia

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The commemoration of all the faithful departed is celebrated by the Church on 2 November, or, if this be a Sunday or a solemnity, on 3 November. The Office of the Dead must be recited by the clergy and all the Masses are to be of Requiem, except one of the current feast, where this is of obligation. The theological basis for the feast is the doctrine that the souls which, on departing from the body, are not perfectly cleansed from venial sins, or have not fully atoned for past transgressions, are debarred from the Beatific Vision, and that the faithful on earth can help them by prayers, almsdeeds and especially by the sacrifice of the Mass. (See PURGATORY.) In the early days of Christianity the names of the departed brethren were entered in the diptychs. Later, in the sixth century, it was customary in Benedictine monasteries to hold a commemoration of the deceased members at Whitsuntide. In Spain there was such a day on Saturday before Sexagesima or before Pentecost, at the time of St. Isidore (d. 636). In Germany there existed (according to the testimony of Widukind, Abbot of Corvey, c. 980) a time-honoured ceremony of praying to the dead on 1 October. This was accepted and sanctified by the Church. St. Odilo of Cluny (d. 1048) ordered the commemoration of all the faithful departed to he held annually in the monasteries of his congregation. Thence it spread among the other congregations of the Benedictines and among the Carthusians. Of the dioceses, Liège was the first to adopt it under Bishop Notger (d. 1008). It is then found in the martyrology of St. Protadius of Besançon (1053-66). Bishop Otricus (1120-25) introduced it into Milan for the 15 October. In Spain, Portugal, and Latin America, priests on this day say three Masses. A similar concession for the entire world was asked of Pope Leo XIII. He would not grant the favour but ordered a special Requiem on Sunday, 30 September, 1888. In the Greek Rite this commemoration is held on the eve of Sexagesima Sunday, or on the eve of Pentecost. The Armenians celebrate the passover of the dead on the day after Easter.

All Saints’ Day

October 30, 2005

Catholic Encyclopedia

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(The vigil of this feast is popularly called “Hallowe’en” or “Halloween”.)Solemnity celebrated on the first of November. It is instituted to honour all the saints, known and unknown, and, according to Urban IV, to supply any deficiencies in the faithful’s celebration of saints’ feasts during the year. In the early days the Christians were accustomed to solemnize the anniversary of a martyr’s death for Christ at the place of martyrdom. In the fourth century, neighbouring dioceses began to interchange feasts, to transfer relics, to divide them, and to join in a common feast; as is shown by the invitation of St. Basil of Caesarea (397) to the bishops of the province of Pontus. Frequently groups of martyrs suffered on the same day, which naturally led to a joint commemoration. In the persecution of Diocletian the number of martyrs became so great that a separate day could not be assigned to each. But the Church, feeling that every martyr should be venerated, appointed a common day for all. The first trace of this we find in Antioch on the Sunday after Pentecost. We also find mention of a common day in a sermon of St. Ephrem the Syrian (373), and in the 74th homily of St. John Chrysostom (407). At first only martyrs and St. John the Baptist were honoured by a special day. Other saints were added gradually, and increased in number when a regular process of canonization was established; still, as early as 411 there is in the Chaldean Calendar a “Commemoratio Confessorum” for the Friday after Easter. In the West Boniface IV, 13 May, 609, or 610, consecrated the Pantheon in Rome to the Blessed Virgin and all the martyrs, ordering an anniversary. Gregory III (731-741) consecrated a chapel in the Basilica of St. Peter to all the saints and fixed the anniversary for 1 November. A basilica of the Apostles already existed in Rome, and its dedication was annually remembered on 1 May. Gregory IV (827-844) extended the celebration on 1 November to the entire Church. The vigil seems to have been held as early as the feast itself. The octave was added by Sixtus IV (1471-84).

Mass Readings

October 30, 2005


Sunday, October 30, 2005
Thirty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time

First Reading: Malachi 1:14 — 2:2, 8-10
Psalm: Psalm 131:1-3
Second Reading: 1 Thessalonians 2:7-9, 13
Gospel: Matthew 23:1-12

Our Lord warns us not to fear because there are three false fears that keep us from God: We want to be saved, but not from our sins; we want to be saved, but not at too great a cost; we want to be saved in our way not His.Bishop Fulton Sheen


October 26, 2005

Pope faced claims of obstructing justice

26 October 2005
By Dan Buckley

BARELY a week after Cardinal Ratzinger became Pope Benedict XVI, he faced claims of obstructing justice after it emerged he issued an order ensuring the Church’s own investigations into child sex abuse claims be carried out in secret.

The order was made in a confidential letter which was sent to every Catholic bishop in May 2001.

It asserted the Church’s right to hold inquiries behind closed doors and keep the evidence confidential for up to 10 years after the victims reached adulthood.

The letter, ‘concerning very grave sins’, was sent from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the Vatican office that was overseen by Ratzinger.

It spelt out to bishops the Church’s position on a number of matters including sexual abuse by a cleric ‘with a minor below the age of 18 years’.

Ratzinger’s letter stated that the Church can claim jurisdiction in cases where abuse has been ‘perpetrated with a minor by a cleric’.

The letter states that the Church’s jurisdiction ‘begins to run from the day when the minor has completed the 18th year of age’ and lasts for 10 years.

It ordered that ‘preliminary investigations’ into any claims of abuse should be sent to Ratzinger’s office, which had the option of referring them back to private tribunals in which the ‘functions of judge, promoter of justice, notary and legal representative can validly be performed for these cases only by priests’.

“Cases of this kind are subject to the pontifical secret,” Ratzinger’s letter concluded.

Breaching the pontifical secret at any time while the 10-year jurisdiction order is operating still carries penalties, including excommunication.

The letter is referred to in documents relating to a lawsuit filed earlier this year against a church in Texas on behalf of two alleged abuse victims.

By sending the letter, lawyers acting for the alleged victims claim the Pope, as cardinal, conspired to obstruct justice.

Ratzinger was originally named as a defendant in the case but, when he became Pope Benedict he succeeded, as Vatican head of state, in being granted immunity from being sued in the US.

Jesus and Mary background image

October 23, 2005

Today on this site I found a beautiful background image which those of you with religious sites might like. I could not make it work here, but I do like it. Here is the thumbnail:

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Click for full view and to get links for different uses.

This site has some very nice thumbnails and small views of lots and lots of Catholic images, but they charge you to download the full photo, so they are in the business of making money. This background image must have escaped their attention ;-)

How this site started…

October 23, 2005

I told St. Jude if he would help me, I would tell everyone. This seemed like the best way to me, as everyone around the world can read it. This picture I chose because the face reminds me of a dear friend, and I feel comfortable with it. St. Jude is the patron saint of lost and hopeless causes, which fits me just perfectly. I will include a little page I just found about him, but there will be more to follow. Click on the link below:

St Jude


October 23, 2005

Catholic Online

St. Jude of Thaddaeus

Feastday: October 28Patron of Desperate Cases
St. Jude, known as Thaddaeus, was a brother of St. James the Less, and a relative of Our Saviour. St. Jude was one of the 12 Apostles of Jesus.

Ancient writers tell us that he preached the Gospel in Judea, Samaria, Idumaea, Syria, Mesopotamia, and Lybia. According to Eusebius, he returned to Jerusalem in the year 62, and assisted at the election of his brother, St. Simeon, as Bishop of Jerusalem.

He is an author of an epistle (letter) to the Churches of the East, particularly the Jewish converts, directed against the heresies of the Simonians, Nicolaites, and Gnostics. This Apostle is said to have suffered martyrdom in Armenia, which was then subject to Persia. The final conversion of the Armenian nation to Christianity did not take place until the third century of our era.

Jude was the one who asked Jesus at the Last Supper why He would not manifest Himself to the whole world after His resurrection. Little else is known of his life. Legend claims that he visited Beirut and Edessa; possibly martyred with St. Simon in Persia.

Jude is invoked in desperate situations because his New Testament letter stresses that the faithful should persevere in the environment of harsh, difficult circumstances, just as their forefathers had done before them. Therefore, he is the patron saint of desperate cases and his feast day is October 28. Saint Jude is not the same person as Judas Iscariot who betrayed Our Lord and despaired because of his great sin and lack of trust in God’s mercy.

ST SIMON the Apostle

October 23, 2005

Catholic Forum

St. Simon the Apostle
Feast Day: October 28

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ST. SIMON is surnamed the Cananaean or Canaanite, and the Zealot, to distinguish him from St. Peter, and from St. Simeon, the brother of St. James the Less, and his successor in the see of Jerusalem. From the first of these surnames some have thought that St. Simon was bom at Cana, in Galilee. Certain modern Greeks pretend that it was at his marriage that our Lord turned the water into wine. It is not to be doubted but he was a Galilaean: Theodoret says, of the tribe either of Zabulon or Nepthali But as for the surname of Cananaean, it has in Syro- Chaldaic the same signification which the word Zelotes bears in Greek. St. Luke translated it, the other evangelists retained the original name; for Canath in Syro-Chaldaic, or modern Hebrew, signifies Zeal, as St. Jerome observes. Nicephorus Calixti, a modern Greek historian, tells us this name was given to St. Simon only from the time of his apostleship, wherein he expressed an ardent zeal and affection for his Master, was an exact observer of all the rules of his religion, and opposed with a pious warmth all those who swerved from it. As the evangelists take no notice of such a circumstance, Hammond and Grotius think that St. Simon was called the Zealot, before his coming to Christ, because he was one of that particular sect or party among the Jews called Zealots, from a singular zeal they professed for the honor of God, and the purity of religion. A party called Zealots were famous in the war of the Jews against the Romans. They were main instruments in instigating the people to shake off the yoke of subjection; they assassinated many of the nobility and others, in the streets, filled the temple itself with bloodshed and other horrible profanations, and were the chief cause of the ruin of their country. But no proof is offered by which it is made to appear that any such party existed in our Savior’s time, though some then maintained that it was not lawful for a Jew to pay taxes to the Romans. At least if any then took the name of Zealots, they certainly neither followed the impious conduct, nor adopted the false and inhuman maxims of those mentioned by Josephus in his history of the Jewish war against the Romans.

St. Simon, after his conversion, was zealous for the honor of his Master, and exact in all the duties of the Christian religion; and showed a pious indignation towards those who professed this holy faith with their mouths, but dishonored it by the irregularity of their fires. No further mention appears of him in the gospels, than that he was adopted by Christ into the college of the apostles. With the rest he received the miraculous gifts of the Holy Ghost, which he afterwards exercised with great zeal and fidelity. Nicephorus Calixti, and some other modern Greeks, pretend, that after preaching in Mauritania, and other parts of Africa, he sailed into Britain, and having enlightened the minds of many with the doctrine of the gospel, was crucified by the infidels. But of this there appears no shadow of probability, and the vouchers, by many inconsistencies, destroy the credit of their own assertion. If this apostle preached in Egypt, Cyrene, and Mauritania, he returned into the East; for the Martyrologies of St. Jerome, Bede, Ado, and Usuard place his martyrdom in Persia, at a city called Suanir, possibly in the country of the Suani, a people in Colchis, or a little higher in Sarmatia, then allied with the Parthians in Persia, which may agree with a passage in the Acts of St. Andrew, that in the Cimmerian Bosphorus there was a tomb in a grot, with an inscription, importing that Simon the Zealot was interred there. His death is said in these Martyrologies to have been procured by the idolatrous priests. Those who mention the manner of his death say he was crucified. St. Peter’s church on the Vatican a Rome, and the cathedral of Toulouse are said to possess the chief portions of the relics of SS. Simon and Jude.

Catholic Forum

SIMON the Apostle

Also known asSimon the Cananean; Simon the Zealot Memorial28 October (Roman Church); 10 May (Coptic Church) ProfileApostle. Evangelized in Egypt and Mesopotamia. Several places claim to have been the site of his martyrdom. Diedmartyred; Abbyssinians claim he was crucified in Samaria; Lipsius says he was sawn in half at Suanir, Persia; Moses of Chorene writes that he was martyred at Weriosphora in Iberia; many locations claim to have relics Patronagecurriers, sawmen, sawyers, tanners PrayersPrayer to… Representationboat; fish; man being sawn in two longitudenally; oar; saw; two fish; lance Additional InformationJames E. Kiefer
Catholic Encyclopedia ImagesGallery of images of Saint Simon

Mass Readings

October 23, 2005


Sunday, October 23, 2005
Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

First Reading: Exodus 22:20-26
Psalm: Psalm 18:2-4, 47, 51
Second Reading: 1 Thessalonians 1:5-10
Gospel: Matthew 22:34-40

O blessed penance which has earned for me such great glory!
~St Peter of Alcantara in a vision to St. Teresa~