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Monday, June 30, 2014

The good old times of England!

Ere in her evil day,

From their Holy Faith and their ancient rites her people fell away;

When her gentlemen had lands to give, and her yeomen hearts to feel;

And they raised full many a bead-house, but never a bastille;

And the poor they honoured, for they knew that He, Who for us bled.

Had seldom, when He came on earth, whereon to lay His Head;

And by the poor man’s dying bed the Holy Pastor stood,

To fortify the parting soul with that celestial Food;

And in the mortal agony the Priest ye might behold,

Commending to his Father's hands a sheep of His own fold;

And when the soul was fled from earth, the Church could do yet more;

For the Chaunting Priests came slow in front, and the Cross went on before;

And o'er the poor man’s pall they bade the sacred banner wave,

To teach her sons that Holy Church hath victory o’er the grave.

But times and things are altered now:

and Englishmen begin to class the beggar with the knave, and poverty with sin :

We shut them up from tree and flower, and from the blessed sun:

We tear in twain the hearts that God in wedlock had made one,

The hearts that beat so faithfully, reposing side by side;

For fifty years of weal and woe from eve till morning tide;

No gentle Nun with her comfort sweet, no friar standeth nigh, With ghostly strength and holy love to close the poor man’s eye:

But the corpse is thrown into the ground, when the prayers are hurried o’er,

To rest in peace a little while, and then make way for more !

We mourn not for our abbey-lands ; e’en pass they as they may !

But we mourn because the tyrant found a richer spoil than they:

He cast away, as a thing defiled, the remembrance of the just;

And the relics of our martyrs he scattered to the dust:

Yet two at least, in their holy shrines, escaped the spoiler's hand,

And S. Cuthbert and S. Kdward might alone redeem a land.

And still our Litanies ascend like incense, as before;

And still we hold the one full faith Nicea taught of yore;

And still our children, duly plunged in the baptismal flood,

“Of water and the Holy Ghost, are born the sons of God ”;

And still our solemn festivals from age to age endure;

And wedded troth remains as firm, and wedded love as pure;

And many an earnest prayer ascends from many a hidden spot:

And England's Church is Catholic, though England’s self be not!

England of Saints! the hour is nigh far nigher may it

Than yet I deem, albeit that day I may not live to see,— When all thy commerce, all thy arts, and wealth, and power, and fame,

Shall melt away—at thy most need—like wax before the flame;

Then shalt thou find thy truest strength thy martyrs’ prayers always;

Then shalt thou find thy truest wealth their holy deeds of love;

And thy Church, awaking from Her sleep, come glorious forth at length,

And in sight of angels and of men display her hidden strength:

Again shall long processions sweep through Lincoln’s minster pile;

Again shall banner, cross, and cope gleam thro’ the incensed aisle :

And the faithful dead shall claim their part in the Church’s thoughtful prayer,

And the daily sacrifice to God be duly offered there;

And tierce, and nones, and matins, shall have each their holy lay ; And the Angelus at compline shall sweetly close the dav.

England of Saints! the peace will dawn- but not without the fight;

So, come the contest when it may,- and God defend thy right!

From Hierologus, or The Church Tourists, by the Rev J M Neale, DD London, James Burns, 1843.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Venerable ROBERT SOUTHWELL, Jesuit



IT is a small relief
To say I was thy child,
If, as an ill-deserving foe,
From grace I am exiled.

I was, I had, I could—
All words importing want;
They are but dust of dead supplies,
Where needful helps are scant.

Once to have been in bliss
That hardly can return,
Doth but bewray from whence I fell,
And wherefore now I mourn.

All thoughts of passed hopes
Increase my present cross ;
Like ruins of decayed joys,
They still upbraid my loss.

O mild and mighty Lord !
Amend that is amiss ;
My sin, my sore, Thy love my salve,
Thy cure my comfort is.

Confirm Thy former deed,
Reform that is defiled ;
I was, I am, I will remain-
Thy charge, Thy choice, Thy child.

Life and works of Robert Southwell SJ

Feast of Saints Peter and Paul

Dowry of Mary at the Heart of the Nation :

On this feast in 1893, "the bishops of England and Wales, in response to the wishes of the Pope, consecrated England to the Mother of God and St Peter in the Oratory Church
The incumbent Archbishop of Westminster in the same place

in London. The action was a direct result of an audience with Pope Leo XIII in which he recalled that this country had long been known as Our Lady's Dowry, thereby giving papal approval to what had been a hallowed tradition and instigating an act not without significance for our own time."

Saints Peter and Paul in the Marmertine Prison.

The Mamertine Prison consists of two gloomy underground cells where Rome's vanquished enemies were imprisoned and usually died, of either starvation or strangulation. Famous prisoners here include the Goth Jugurtha, the indomitable Gaul Vercingetorix and, according to legend, St. Peter. There is no archaeological evidence or early written account that Peter was here, but the legend had taken root by the 5th century and the prison attracted early pilgrims. It remains a pilgrimage site today and a church, San Giuseppe dei Falegnami, now stands over the prison.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

+ Saint JOHN RIGBY, Layman, 1600



At the next assizes he again refused to go to church, and the judge ordered his feet to be put in irons. A strong pair of shackles, which the confessor kissed and blessed with the sign of the cross, were then riveted on his legs. The next day as he stood at the Sessions house the irons fell off his legs on to the ground, at which he smiled and begged the keeper to rivet them on faster. The keeper did so with all care, but again they fell. Then he called again to the keeper to make them secure : " For I esteem them," he said, "jewels too precious to be lost." But the keeper's man, being much amazed, refused to put them on again, so another was ordered to do so. Then Mr. Rigby, remembering that a Catholic maid called Mercy had that morning told him that in the night she saw in her dream his irons fall off his legs, said to his keeper, " Now the maid's dream is found to be true." He added he hoped it was a token that the bands of his mortality would shortly be loosed, and so it proved. He won his crown, June 21, 1600, St. Thomas' Waterings, London. "
Chaucer's pilgrims at this place

"Thou hast broken my bonds : I will sacrifice to Thee a sacrifice of praise."—Ps. cxv. 16.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Death of Mother Marie de St Pierre, 1924

in the world, Adele Garnier, foundress of the Tyburn Convent.

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