7th Day of Christmas

 On the Seventh Day of Christmas:

Seven Swans A-Swimming

Traditional Catechetical Remembrance: The seven gifts of the Holy Spirit and/or the seven sacraments

Today is December 31st - New Year's Eve - And the Feast of the Holy Family

Today we remember the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony and pray for our families and the unity of our families. Say a prayer to the Holy Family and ask them to pray for and with you for a blessed new year.

O Emmanuel

O Emmanuel -  (O Emmanuel) - O Antiphon for December 23


O Emmanuel, king and lawgiver,

desire of the nations, Savior of all people: Come and set us free, Lord our God.

(December 23)


O Emmanuel,

Rex et legifer noster, expectatio gentium, et Salvator earum:veni ad salvandum nos, Domine, Deus noster.

The Acrostic

The first letters of the titles, from last to first, appear to form a Latin acrostic, 'Ero cras', meaning 'Tomorrow, I will be [there]', mirroring the theme of the antiphons. This is formed from the first letter of each title – Emmanuel, Rex, Oriens, Clavis, Radix, Adonai, Sapientia.

And the Song You All Know!

The song, O Come, O Come Emmanuel is also based in the O Antiphons!

OK, one more version:

Pope Francis Resigning

Will Pope Francis follow in the footsteps of Pope Benedict XVI?

Photo credit: Vatican News

He has stated that he would. He has already picked a retirement house in Buenos Aires for where he would like to live and plans to work as a priest. He said this is what he was planning on doing before he became pope and wishes to return to that plan as pope emeritus (Akin, 2014). Some speculate this could be as early as after Christmas of 2020 (FR News, 2020). An article from Keep the Faith in February 2020, states that there is "no doubt he will resign in 2020" (Hoare, 2020). Another, who cites a comment from Pope Francis, more clearly states - "the question is not if Francis will resign, but more likely when will he actually do so" (Mickens, 2019).

The bottom line is, Pope Francis has not definitively declared he will resign after Christmas, 2020. What we have here is speculation from news agencies and others who are basing their speculation on implied statements that Pope Francis has made. Could it be after Christmas and still within 2020? Well, as of the writing of this article, we have a little over a week to find out! Based upon what is out there, it is the opinion of this writer that he likely will follow in the footsteps of Pope Benedict XVI. Whether that will happen in 2020, or at some future date, this writer cannot and will not say.


Akin, J. (2014). Pope Francis announces he may renounce the papacy one day: 6 things to know and share [blog]. National Catholic Registerhttps://www.ncregister.com/blog/pope-francis-announces-he-may-renounce-the-papacy-one-day-6-things-to-know-and-share

FR24 News (2020). Pope: "Without a doubt" the Pope will resign after Christmas when Francis has pledged to "follow Benedict". FR24 Newshttps://www.fr24news.com/a/2020/12/pope-without-a-doubt-the-pope-will-resign-after-christmas-when-francis-has-pledged-to-follow-benedict-world-new.html 

Hoare, C. (2020). Pope Francis: 'No doubt will resign in 2020' claim revealed amid slap video row. Keep the Faith. https://www.keepthefaith.co.uk/2020/01/18/pope-francis-no-doubt-he-will-resign-in-2020-claim-revealed-amid-slap-video-row/ 

Mickens, R. (2019). The resignation of Pope Francis. LaCroix Internationalhttps://international.la-croix.com/news/letter-from-rome/the-resignation-of-pope-francis/9416 

O Rex Gentium

 O Rex Gentium - O King of Nations - O Antiphon for December 22


O King of all the nations, the only joy of every human heart;

O Keystone of the mighty arch of man:Come and save the creature you fashioned from the dust.


O Rex Gentium,

et desideratus earum, lapisque angularis, qui facis utraque unum: veni, et salva hominem, quem de limo formasti.

And the sixth "O" ornament on our Jesse Tree:

O Oriens

 O Oriens - O Radiant Dawn - O Antiphon for December 21


O Radiant Dawn, splendor of eternal light, sun of justice:

Come, shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death.


O Oriens,

splendor lucis aeternae, et sol justitiae: veni, et illuminasedentes in tenebris, et umbra mortis.

And our fifth "O" ornament on the Jesse Tree:

Fourth Sunday in Advent

 It is the FOURTH and LAST Sunday in Advent!

The start of the Christ Mass Season is right around the corner! 

Prepare ye the way of the Lord!

As you light the fourth and last candle of the Advent wreath, pray these prayers:

INTROIT Drop down dew, ye heavens, from above, and let the clouds rain the just (Is. 45). Let the earth be opened, and bud forth a Savior. The heavens show forth the glory of God, and the firmament declareth the work of his hands (Ps. 18:2). Glory be to the Father.

COLLECT Raise up, O Lord, we pray Thee, Thy power, and come, and with great might succor us: that, by the help of Thy grace, that which our sins impede may be hastened by Thy merciful forgiveness. Through our Lord.

(Readings from the Extraordinary Rite)

Remember, the BEST way to keep Christ in Christmas is to keep the Mass in Christmas.

O Clavis David

 O Clavis David - O Key of David - O Antiphon - December 20


O Key of David, O royal Power of Israel,

controlling at your will the gate of heaven: Come, break down the prison walls of death for those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death; and lead your captive people into freedom.


O Clavis David,

et sceptrum domus Israël, qui aperis, et nemo claudit, claudis, et nemo aperuit: veni, et educ vinctumde domo carceris, sedentem in tenebris, et umbra mortis.

And the fourth "O" ornament is added to our Jesse Tree:

O Radix Jesse

 O Radix Jesse - O Root of Jesse - December 19th Antiphon


O Root of Jesse,

you have been raised up as a sign for all peoples; kings stand silent in your presence; the nations bow down in worship before you. Come, let nothing keep you from coming to our aid.


O Radix Jesse,

qui stas in signum populorum, super quem continebunt reges os suum, quem gentes deprecabuntur: veni ad liberandum nos, jam noli tardare.

And today, the third "O" ornament on our Jesse Tree:

O Adonai

 December 18 - O Adonai - O Lord

Veni, Veni, Adonai, qui populo in Sinai
legem dedisti vertice in maiestate gloriae.

O Come, O Come, Thou Lord of might,
who to thy tribes on Sinai's height
in ancient times didst give the law,
in cloud, and majesty, and awe.

And so today, December 18, we add the second "O" ornament to our Jesse Tree:

O Sapientia

 December 17 - The first day of the O Antiphons!

O Sapientia - or O Wisdom marks today.

In our house we setup a "Jesse Tree" and hang an "O" ornament each night.

With the hanging of each ornament - we recite or sing the related verse from "O Come, O Come Emanuel" 

From Wikipedia:

The first letters of the titles, from last to first, appear to form a Latin acrostic which translates to "Tomorrow, I will be [there]", mirroring the theme of the antiphons. Father Saunders wrote, "According to Professor Robert Greenberg of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, the Benedictine monks arranged these antiphons with a definite purpose. If one starts with the last title and takes the first letter of each one - Emmanuel, Rex, Oriens, Clavis, Radix, Adonai, Sapientia - the Latin words ero cras are formed, meaning, "Tomorrow, I will come". Therefore, the Lord Jesus, whose coming we have prepared for in Advent and whom we have addressed in these seven Messianic titles, now speaks to us, Tomorrow, I will come. So the O Antiphons not only bring intensity to our Advent preparation, but bring it to a joyful conclusion.

Sing with your family:
O come, o come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel!

O come, O Wisdom from on high,
who orders all things mightily,
to us the path of knowledge show,
and teach us in her ways to go.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel!

Time vs Eternity


Time vs Infinity

Time Vs Eternity


Arthur C. Custance and

Robin A. Dionne

Does time have a beginning? What was God doing before He created the universe? St.Thomas Aquinas answered: Since time did not exist, God did not have time to do anything.

St. Thomas believed that time began when the universe was made into existence. There are those who believe that there is such a thing as an absolute time where there is no point where time began, where time is infinitely long (where there is no beginning and no end).

I respectfully disagree. Time as we know it can only be found in our universe because it can only be experienced in a specific manner in this universe. Although we, as individuals, feel time pass in the same manner, its speed can be perceived differently. If you’re preoccupied with something, time may pass more quickly than if you were bored. This effect of the stretching or compression of time is manifested in the psychological world (in your mind). Another, more counter-intuitive, phenomenon of stretching, and compression of time can be actually seen and measured in relativistic effects. These time fluctuations occur in the physical world. But what happens in the spiritual world? How does God perceive time? Or is He outside of time as we know it?

Whether we look at how time is relative in our perceptions as well as our measurements, we are still dealing with time, and not with eternity. To use a more familiar idea would be to talk about any number and infinity. The basic mistake that most people do is to conceptualize infinity to a very large number. If you take away 1 from a very large number (no matter how large it is), you end up with a very large number less one. But if you take away one from infinity, you still get infinity. As far as a large number is from infinity, so is time from eternity. These 2, time and eternity, are two different realms of experience. What we need to remember here is that when we step out of time, we step into eternity, and we cannot be in them both at once. But God can.

God exists in these two realms. I can say this because since time only began after the universe was brought forth we know God was there before time existed. How can God be bound by something He created out of nothing? And since we experience God through miracles and through Jesus, we know that God exists inside of time. Therefore God exists inside and outside of time. In the New Testament, the Lord Jesus testified to this capacity. The most striking example showing that God lives outside of time is the following statement from John 8:58: “Before Abraham was, I am.” Let’s look at this statement closely.

What we might have expected to find would have been the words, “Before Abraham was, I was” – which would have satisfied our normal sense of time. But this is not what the Lord said. What He did say is much more significant and is evidence of His living outside of time. The subject of the conversation was Abraham. The Lord took Abraham’s time as the point of reference and spoke of the ages that preceded Abraham, and all that followed (including the present). Jesus referred to the distant period before Abraham in the present tense even though it was centuries ago. To Christ, it was “now”. Why? Because Jesus is God, and to God, there is no passage of time, but all is “present”.

Another illustration of this apparent inversion of time is found in Isaiah 65:24, “Before they call, I will answer.” Most people have taken this to mean simply that God knows ahead of time what we are going to pray for and then can anticipate our needs. But this is not really what it says in Isaiah. What God says is that the fulfillment of the request will have been completed before the request is made, which would seem to render prayer unnecessary in the first place because if God has already answered, why pray? – From God’s point of view the prayer is already answered because from God’s point of view it is already prayed. Therefore, prayer is still useful and necessary in our timeframe.

Still another example comes from Revelation 13:8, “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Again, the ordinary way to interpret this verse is to think of it as God’s foreknowledge. But it doesn’t say that the Lamb was foreordained to be slain. But in the text it is the Lord who is slain, from the foundation of the world – slain in fact, out of time. This was the sacrifice of God, an event that was timeless in and of itself. This is a truth that is by no means essential that a man should understand in order to be saved, but it is a wonderful thing to enter into God’s revelation and think His thoughts after Him. The Lord Jesus Christ continually lived in time for our sakes, and in eternity by His very nature. It is in this sense that He could speak of Himself while on earth as “the Son of man which is in heaven” (John 3:13).

This next section needs some careful attention. It's here that we’ll apply what we just learned about the two categories of experience, time and eternity. This way of thinking will clear up quite a few mysteries in a wonderful way. When a Christian dies, he passes from this realm of time and space into another realm of pure spirit, that is to say, out of time as we experience it into a state of timelessness, the ever-present of God. As he makes this passage, every event in God’s scheduled program for the future which, as revealed in Scripture must come to pass before the Lord’s return, must crowd instantly upon him. He does not “wait” for the Lord’s return: it is immediate. But the Lord’s return is an event, which, in the framework of historical time, cannot take place until the church is complete and the end of the age has come. It must happen for him, therefore, that these events are completed instantaneously, though the living who survive him await these events in the future.

Yet, for him, those who survive him must in his consciousness also have completed their journey home, and therefore he will not even experience any departing from them, but they with him rise to meet the Lord on His way for His second triumph with all the saints. Within the framework of time, this general resurrection is future, but to the “dying” Christian, it is a present event. This is the meaning of the Lord’s words “The hour is coming – and now is…” (John 5:25).

Now, this can be carried a little further. The experience of each saint is shared by all other saints, by those who have preceded and those who are to follow. For them all, all history, all intervening time between death and the Lord's return, is suddenly annihilated so that each one finds to his amazement that Adam, too, is just dying and joining him on his way to meet the Lord: and Abraham and David, Isaiah and the Beloved John, Paul and Augustine, and you and all in one wonderful experience meeting the Lord in a single instant together, without precedence and without the slightest consciousness of delay, none being late and none too early (this could be the meaning of I Thessalonians 4:13-17.

For us who remain, this event is still future, an event greatly longed for: for those who have gone on, it has already happened but not without us.It is in this sense that Scripture twice affirms, observing events from our point of view, that no man hath yet ascended into heaven (John 3:13), not even David (Acts 2:34). David is not there yet, nor any others, because we are not there! As we have said, in one body, in one single experience, all pass together to be with the Lord and all intervening time being eclipsed, the Lord is at that moment on His way back.

[I welcome any doctrinal questions or corrections]


Gaudete - Third Sunday in Advent

Gaudete Sunday - Rejoice in the Lord always!

Gaudete, or Joyful, Sunday is upon us! Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say Rejoice! 

INTROIT (And EPISTLE) Philippians 4:4-6
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I say, rejoice! Let your moderation be known to all men. The Lord is near. Have no anxiety; but in every prayer let your petitions be made known to God.

Ps. 84:2. O Lord, You have blessed Your land; You have restored Jacob from captivity.

V. Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

The vestments color today is rose to symbolize the joyfulness of the coming soon of our Lord, similar to Laetare Sunday in Lent. During our days of penance - which is a main theme of the Advent season - we take time to be mindful and joyful of the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, not only the celebration of His birth on the day of the Christ Mass (Christmas) but also in joyful eagerness for His Second Coming.

Also, a reminder - THIS IS NOT THE CHRISTMAS SEASON! Christmas starts with the first Mass of Christmas - or the Christ Mass. Traditionally that is "Midnight Mass" on Christmas morning. Wish your friends and fellow parishioners a Blessed Advent during this season - then celebrate the Christ Mass from December 25th through January 2nd, which is Candlemas - and the last time of the liturgical year that the nativity is directly referenced. 

This coming Thursday begins the traditional practice of reciting the O Antiphons:

The “O Antiphons” are prayed as part of the prayer of the Church from December 17 until the 23rd. Each of the O Antiphons is a name for Christ, and expresses the longing for the Messiah.

The names of Jesus in the O Antiphons are:

O Wisdom of our God Most High

O Adonai, ruler of the house of Israel

O Root of Jesse’s stem

O Key of David

O Radiant Dawn

O King of all nations

O Emmanuel

As these days progress - here at Qui Locutus we will post the traditional prayers, readings and invite your comments. Do you have a tradition you practice for the O Antiphons? 

Second Sunday of Advent

On this Second Sunday of Advent we are reminded to "stir up our hearts." What does this mean to you? How are you "stirring up your heart" for the Lord this Advent season?


Happy New Year!

Yes! It is a NEW YEAR! Today marks the First Sunday in Advent and liturgically speaking, this marks the liturgical new year!

Advent - is a penitential season, similar to Lent but not as severe. Still, we are called to look to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ - not only to celebrate His birth at the Christ Mass but also to prepare ourselves for His Second Coming! 

Spiritual Protection

 Spiritual Warfare - A video by Fr. Ripperger

A discussion of exorcism and how to defend yourself from attacks from evil. The importance of remaining in the state of grace and to participate frequently in the Sacrament of Confession.
Share your thoughts and comments!

The Season After Pentecost

 ...is drawing to a close! Well, we still have nearly 2 months to go - but it's already October! Advent, the start of the liturgical year, is right around the corner. I know - it's a bit early, but it is this time of year I do start thinking and prepping for Advent (the season BEFORE Christmas) and then the Christmas season, which begins on December 25th and runs through at least Candlemas (Feb. 2nd). 

Still in school here - but will try to post more as I can. Some of my papers I think will also make good articles for Qui Locutus - so maybe school work will have some double-duty in the near future!

Also - Yahoogroups, where we have hosted our email forums, is shutting down completely in December. I know it hasn't been very busy in the forums - but that is something I do not want to let go of - and when school is finished, I want to put more effort into rejuvenating them. If you have any suggestions for good solid forum discussions - post a comment and let me know.


Scott (CathApol) Windsor<<<

PS - I have restarted the forums, and they are getting quite a few visitors (stats at the bottom of the home page) but not many posts from guests. Please check out the new host of the Catholic Debate Forum:


Preach the Gospel at all times, if necessary, use words

So goes the statement very commonly attributed to St. Francis of Assisi. Now, did he actually say:
Preach the Gospel at all times, if necessary, use words?
Well, probably not those exact words, but he DID say these, very similar, words:
Nevertheless, let all the brothers preach by their works. And let no minister or preacher appropriate to himself the ministry of brothers or the office of preaching, but let him give up his office without any contradiction at whatever hour it may be enjoined him. (St. Francis, 2019).

So, one can see that the "rule" was the brothers (friars) were to "preach by their works." That does pretty much say what is commonly attributed to him!
These words are rooted in Scripture too. John 13:35-
By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one for another. (DRB, 1899).
In other words, Jesus was not saying that they will know the Apostles are His Disciples by what they preach, but by them showing the love they have for one another.
One of my instructors relates his experiences and meditations as he walks from Tui to Santiago de Compostela along the Camino Portugues, which is the way of St. James, the Apostle through Spain. He relates how much you can see how the people who live along the Camino Portugues live their faith, day in and day out. You can also see how other pilgrims on the trail have left their own marks of meditation and adoration. The point is, we should all live our faith - all the time - so that those who observe us, like our co-workers, family, and other associates, can see that our faith is not just a Sunday-only thing, but is part of our lives.
One of my purposes for writing this blog entry is related to a request from my instructor, "Pilgrim Paul," (Pilgrim, 2014), but the other reason I have for this is to counter several other writers out there who downplay the St. Francis paraphrase - 1) because he didn't use those words and 2) the Gospel MUST be preached, WITH words.
To the latter point, St. Francis clearly did not say "do not use words," for he himself used MANY words - including the First Rule of the Friars Minor, (Francis, 1209) which I quoted from earlier. The point is - live the Gospel, for that too is preaching - and when necessary, use words. Often we find that using words does not lead to conversion, but leaves one with an emotional response, either entrenched in their position or you are preaching to the choir (those who are already convinced) (Adler, Iacobelli, & Gutstien, 2016).

Adler, R. F., Iacobelli, F., & Gutstein, Y. (2016). Are you convinced? A Wizard of Oz study to test emotional vs. rational persuasion strategies in dialogues. Computers in Human Behavior, 75. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0747563215302867?via%3Dihub

DRB (1899). John 13:35. Douay Rheims Bible, American Edition. https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+13%3A35&version=DRA

Pilgrim, P. (2014). Following in the footsteps on the Camino [blog post]. Following in the Footstepshttp://followinginthefootsteps.org/following-in-the-footsteps-on-the-camino/

St. Francis of Assisi (2019). 17: Of preachers. First Rule of the Friars Minor. https://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/assisi-the-writings-of-saint-francis-of-assisi

Those Nefarious Catholics and the Letter J

One of my sons asked me to look into this alleged controversy. I say "alleged" because the controversy itself is an invention of those who do not understand linguistics and how the letter "J" came into the English alphabet.

The claim is that the letter "J" is only 400-500 years old and that the Catholic Church invented the letter to get the world to worship their false god "Jesus" as opposed to the real God, Yeshua. The fact is there is some truth to the inclusion of "J" into the English alphabet! What is false is that the Catholic Church somehow used this to undermine "true" Christianity. The reality is that the origin is in the letter "I". Therefore the name Jesus would have originally been written "Iesus." If we want to get picky, it would actually have been written: "IESVS" as there was no "U" prior to the 14th century either! One of the most famous Roman Ceasars is Julius Ceasar, which was written IVLIVS CÆSAR (originally there were no lowercase letters either!).

Source: Cody, (n.d.)
Hebrew: שׁוּעַ  or YeshuaGreek: IésousLatin: IESVSModern English: Jesus
You can see the evolution of the name Jesus from the Hebrew, where a "Y" or "yod" becomes an "I" in Greek and Latin, and later to the "J" in modern English. (Reminder, when you read in Hebrew it is right to left).

The fact is the ancient letter "I" has long had the pronunciation of the modern letter "J." Have you ever noticed that "J" can also sound like a consonant "Y" as well as to a vowel "Y"?  For example, the Roman word IVVNIS, the Latin word for "young." The first "I" makes the Y/J sound, like we use in the English word "young," while the second "I" has the sound of the vowel "E"!  To help make the distinction between the two sounds of "I," in the Middle Ages writers started adding a little "tail" below the line to the letter "I" - that below-the-line tail is still seen in the lowercase "j" and moves above the line for the uppercase "J." Thus the letter "J" is born! (NativLang, 2016).

So, when did "J" get officially recognized? In 1524, an Italian man named Gian Giorgio Trissino made the distinction between the soft "J" like in "jam" and the "I" sound - and he did this to clarify the phoneme for Jesus - so yes, it does come down to that name! 

U and J are not alone! G, W, and Y are also on the list of the English alphabet of letters which were not there in the original Latin alphabet! This brings us back to the earlier statement of the ignorance of modern antagonists who are unaware of how alphabets evolve linguistically - and not for some nefarious motives of the Catholic Church.

Speaking of nefarious - even the Nazis got into the act! First, in German, the name "Jesus" is "Jesus!" There is no transliteration! That said, the Nazis felt they had to remove all Jewishness from Jesus - and for some, the claim was (is?) that Jesus Himself was German (or Aryan) and was persecuted and crucified by the Jews, and therefore was not one of them (Heschel, 2008).

The sign the Romans posted on Jesus' Cross, often artistically rendered by the initials in Latin, was IESVS NAZARENVS REX IVDÆORVM, Jesus (of) Nazareth, King (of the) Jews - or INRI. It is also recorded in John 19:19-20 that the sign was written in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin.


Cody, D.J. (n.d.). Yeshua -vs- Jesus; The controversy; The debate; The answer. Encouraging Love Ministrieshttps://www.encouraginglove.com/yeshua-vs-jesus/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIvcSdjMzP6gIVyrzACh3mQw5mEAMYAiAAEgIrWvD_BwE

Dictionary.com (n.d.). Meet the man responsible for the letter "J". Dictionary.com.   https://www.dictionary.com/e/j/#:~:text=It%20wasn't%20until%201524,distinction%20between%20the%20two%20sounds.

Heschel, S. (2008). The Aryan Jesus; Christian theologians and the Bible in Nazi Germany. Princeton University Presshttps://www.manchester.edu/docs/default-source/academics/by-major/philosophy-and-religious-studies/journal/volume-3-issue-2-spring-2010/the-aryan-jesus.pdf?sfvrsn=a35d8962_2

NativLang, (2016). Modding the Latin alphabet: the odd history of G, J, U, W, Y [video]. NativLang.   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mC0wsuowbRA

Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus

Another of the "not-so-ordinary" days in Ordinal Time!

Remember too, when a solemnity falls on a Friday - there is no fasting or abstinence, so have that cheeseburger without guilt today! Just remember WHY you can have that cheeseburger today! If someone who knows you and knows you typically abstain from meat on Fridays asks you why you are having that cheeseburger, it gives you an opportunity to share just a little more of your faith with them.

Anything But Ordinary

We often hear this period after the Feast of Pentecost referred to as "Ordinary Time." I believe this label, though technically accurate, does the season - and the Church - a huge injustice. The term "ordinary" comes from the same root as "ordinal" which refers to "counting," in fact traditionally this period, as well as the weeks which follow the Feast of the Epiphany, is called an "Ordinal Time" because these are the "counting weeks" after Pentecost, before Advent (and Epiphany, before Lent). There are several very important feast days which take place during ordinal or counting time...
  • Trinity Sunday (June 7, this year - varies due to date of Easter)
  • June 24 - Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist
  • June 29 - Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul
  • August 15 - Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (a holy day of obligation!)
  • November 1 - All Saints Day (a holy day of obligation)
  • November 2 - The Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed (All Souls Day)
  • November 25 - Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe (Christ the King)
To call this period "Ordinary Time" makes it sound so "plain" or "boring" as the common use of "ordinary" implies. So will you join me in this movement to return to calling this "Ordinal Time?" If enough of us do so, perhaps the bishops will join us in seeing the wisdom of the more precise terminology. Feel free to use the image in this post and copy it to your blog and/or Facebook cover - or make your own! Please use one of the "share" buttons below this posting to share with others!
Use this link: http://quilocutus.blogspot.com/search/label/Ordinary to see previous postings on this subject.

Physical - Not Social Distancing

I stumbled across the Hour of Power broadcast last week and heard the Rev. Bobby Schuller (grandson of Robert H. Schuller, of the same Hour of Power). My father loved watching Robert Schuller and always wanted to go see the Crystal Cathedral, sadly - he never made it there. The Crystal Cathedral is now Christ Cathedral - an actual cathedral of the Catholic Church for the Diocese of Orange in California (Christ Cathedral, 2020). Ironically, when Bobby Schuller moved from the Crystal Cathedral to Shepherd's Grove, it is located in a former Catholic church called St. Callistus (CBN, 2020).

But I digress... I stumbled across Rev. Bobby Schuller's Easter sermon and was struck by him making the distinction between social distancing and physical distancing. The message is that we need to continue to be socially close to each other - while in this time of the COVID-19 outbreak, we need to practice physical distancing to help stop the spread of this virus.

Schuller Is Not Alone

Since hearing Schuller's sermon I did a little research, and he is not the only one making this distinction. Dr. Joe Kort made virtually the same claim stating "We have to stay socially connected through this (COVID-19 pandemic)." He continues:
We can stay in connection with each other on the phone, webcam, and many other online formats. Now is a time to be intentional and interactive and not to isolate. We are wired to be social and luckily can maintain that with technology. (Kort, 2020).
Anderson reports that even the Center for Disease Control (CDC) is changing its terminology to physical distancing instead of social distancing (Anderson, 2020). Continuing, "social distancing implies not socializing; physical distance mans not being physically close."

In another report it is stated that "social distancing is a misnomer." This article continues, "While we must be physically distant, it is crucial we maintain, or even increase, social contact with others during this unprecedented time" (Greenaway, Saeri, & Cruwys, 2020).

Not Just For COVID-19

The concepts of frequent hand-washing and physical distancing we have all been a party to for the past several weeks are and have long been the recommendations to help stop the spread of any virus or other infectious disease. Every year we encounter the seasonal flu, which mutates from year to year. We have figured out how to make vaccines for the flu, but since it mutates, each year we need a different vaccine. Thus far there is no vaccine for COVID-19, but it is expected we will see one later this year, or perhaps next year. The point though is during flu season and presumably, now we may see a COVID season, frequent hand hygiene and physical distancing should be and should have been the norm. Keep in mind, thus far the most recent seasonal flu (for which we have and widely distribute a vaccination) has killed more in the United States (and the world) than COVID-19 has and since it is a new virus there is no vaccine for it (Maragakis, 2020). So again, good hygiene and physical distancing is something we should constantly be practicing. Welcome to the new normal.


Anderson, J. (2020). Social distancing isn't the right language for what Covid-19 asks of us. Quartz. Retrieved from https://qz.com/1830347/social-distancing-isnt-the-right-language-for-what-covid-19-asks-of-us/

CBN, (2020). Bobby Schuller helps you find happiness through Jesus. The 700 Club. Retrieved from https://www1.cbn.com/bobby-schuller-helps-you-find-happiness-through-jesus

Christ Cathedral, (2020). About Christ Cathedral. Diocese of Orange. Retrieved from https://christcathedralcalifornia.org/explore/about-christ-cathedral/

Greenaway, K.H., Saeri, A., & Cruwys, T. (2020). Why are we calling it 'social distancing'? Right now, we need social connections more than ever. The Conversation. Retrieved from https://theconversation.com/why-are-we-calling-it-social-distancing-right-now-we-need-social-connections-more-than-ever-134249

Kort, J. (2020). Practice physical distancing, not social distancing; How to cope with the coronavirus quarantine. Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/understanding-the-erotic-code/202003/practice-physical-distancing-not-social-distancing

Maragakis, L. (2020). Coronavirus disease 2019 vs. the flu. Johns Hopkins Medicine. Retrieved from https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus/coronavirus-disease-2019-vs-the-flu

Jewish Festivals

I was just viewing a Bible study online with Fr. Bill Halbing which brought back memories of the Jewish Studies course my wife and I took several years ago with Rabbi Perlmutter. One thing which caught my eye, which I didn't quite get from the previous course we took, comes from the three main feasts in Judaism:

Pasach - or Passover - coincides with Good Friday.
Pentecost - In Christianity we use the same name - coincides with Christ going into Heaven.
Sukkoth - Feast of huts, or tents - the harvest - coincides with Christ's second coming.

Fr. Halbing then points out - these refer to "Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again." Something which is proclaimed in the Ordinary Rite just after the Mystery of Faith which is the Consecration of the Eucharist. It is good to remind everyone, the Mystery of Faith is NOT "Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again," for those are two statements of history and one of prophecy and there is no real mystery here. The Mystery of Faith, in the context of the Mass, is the Consecration of the Eucharist where mere bread and wine are substantially transformed into the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ - THAT is the Mystery of Faith! But, to reiterate Fr. Halbing's point - that which is professed during the Ordinary Rite of the Mass comes to us from our Jewish heritage.

I have not finished this online Bible study yet myself, but thus far I am finding it quite interesting. If you are interested, I am including the video (and a link) below.

Fr. Halbing also does live Zoom meetings on Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. You can find more information here:  http://www.godswordalivetoday.org/ 

Holy Thursday

The evening begins with a humble foot washing and before it is over, Jesus stands before Caiphus.

Why Is This Week Different From the Rest?

Ma Nishtana

Traditionally, during the Passover Seder, the youngest (capable) son asks, "Why is this day different from all the rest?"  Our tradition should be to ask, "Why is this week different from all the rest?"

In the Hebrew tradition, the reading of the Torah in preparation for Passover, the Ma Nishtana is one of 4 (or 3, depending on the tradition) questions asked by the youngest male child. It is a way of involving the children in the lessons/readings for this season - a great lesson we can all learn to help involve our children.

Four Questions

In light of the Hebrew Mishna tradition (Pesachim 10.4) we should have our youngest child ask four questions to reflect upon the events of Holy Thursday.
1) Why is this week different from all the rest?
2) Why does Jesus wash the feet of the Apostles?
3) What happens to the bread and wine?
4) Why is Jesus arrested on this night?

We are taken from the height of praise, singing "Hosanna in the highest!" to the lowest of lows when our Lord is betrayed by one He Himself selected. He is beaten, scourged, forced to carry His Cross, crucified, died and was buried. Oh the grief! Oh the pain! Oh the suffering! Oh that the week would end here!  But while that week ends with Jesus in the grave - the next week brings the Resurrection!

On Holy or Maundy Thursday, we celebrate the First Mass as Jesus Christ celebrated it nearly 2000 years ago on this day. Traditionally, after the sermon the priest in alter christos, washes the feet of twelve men, representing the Twelve Apostles. Then comes the Lord's Supper - the first celebration of the Eucharist. It is that SAME Sacrifice we celebrate today and at EVERY Mass. It is not a repeat of the first - it is that SAME Sacrifice - re-presented for us, just as Christ presented to the Apostles on the same night in which He was betrayed.

Passion Sunday - Purple Veils

Today is Passion Sunday (in the Extraordinary Rite) - only two weeks remain of Lent. So why do we veil images and statues starting on Passion Sunday? You can find a few explanations, but the one I like is that Jesus hid Himself from the Jews who sought to stone Him, and left the Temple. This is the beginning of Passiontide - a season (sadly) no longer observed in the Ordinary Rite, but in the Extraordinary Rite, it still is. Pictures of Jesus, the Saints, etc. are hidden from us for these last two weeks which increases in us the hunger for Christ and holiness. The veils are a reminder of the fact that Jesus had to hide Himself and so His image is hidden from us too and remain hidden until during the Gloria, which has also been omitted during Lent, of the First Mass of Easter. During the Gloria, the veils are removed the bells ring (which were silenced after Holy Thursday) and we again can look upon Him and His holiness, as also revealed through the Saints (which again, were also veiled for Passiontide).

This excellent tradition of veiling holy items is not just for the Church, but also in the homes of the laity. What a wonderful visual and lesson for our children! If you have not participated in this before, I urge you to do so - now! If you do not have purple cloths, plan to get some - but go ahead and cover with whatever you do have now, change it to purple when you have it. When your children ask about it, you can share the reasoning. As the two weeks progress, they too may begin to miss seeing these images and statues and given another reason to be joyful on Easter Sunday - another reminder that He IS risen!

In the Ordinary Rite, Passion Sunday was moved to and combined with Palm Sunday, liturgically speaking. Again I urge you to keep the tradition of Passion Sunday (there is no rule against doing so!) and not detract from Palm Sunday - when Jesus was honored upon His entrance to Jerusalem which ultimately begins Holy Week, the holiest week in the liturgical year.

Laetare Sunday - 4th Sunday of Lent

Today the vestments are in rose (not pink) to celebrate the joy of seeing our Lord. We are twenty-one days from the glorious celebration of Easter Sunday.

The Gospel reading includes the healing of a man born blind - who sees for the first time and pronounces his belief in the Son of Man - Jesus Christ. Let us all be joyful in seeing the Lord and not be afraid to witness to others, as the man healed of blindness did not fear standing before the Pharisees, even after they had rebuked him.

COVID-19 Considerations
Today, due to mandates to observe social distancing we were encouraged to watch the Mass on TV or on the Internet. Which I did. I watched a couple Masses actually, and I will not name them here in public but was a bit disturbed to see that people were standing (and sitting) right next to each other and at the Kiss of Peace they shook hands with each other, the second Mass I watched did not show the congregation, but the priest and deacon shook hands and embraced. At both Masses the Eucharist was given as the host only, the Precious Blood was reserved for the priest and deacon alone.

A third Mass I watched, celebrated by a bishop, the Kiss of Peace was not physically done at all, "The peace of the Lord be with you always..." and then he moved on with the Agnus Dei. This one did not show the distribution of the Eucharist at all.

Many bishops have already temporarily lifted the Sunday obligation - so check with your local diocese to see if you are among them.

God be with us in these trying times.

Third Sunday of Lent

This Sunday is the 3rd Sunday of Lent. In the Extraordinary Rite we read about Jesus casting out the devil from the dumb man. Traditionally this was a day of testing of the catechumens in preparation for their baptism on Easter Vigil. The first effect of baptism is to free souls from the power of the devil.

One site I read this week encourages everyone to offer up as a Lenten sacrifice to only purchase that which is absolutely needed. In this week of media driven panic people are rushing to stores and hoarding things like toilet paper and hand sanitizer - leaving the shelves empty for others who still need these items while they now have an over-abundance.

Feast of the Assumption

 The Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary - another example of "not-so-ordinary" days! These are COUNTING days - and...