It was a great run!

We're sorry to let the visitors to this blog know that we must bring it to an end. The blog has been a worthwhile effort to document the transition of the Our Lady of Sorrows Latin Mass community to Old St. Patrick Oratory and the $1.5 million dollar renovation of the historic church. This blog contains pictures, stories and tidbits from throughout the years of work. We have so much to be thankful for...mostly to Bishop Robert Finn for believing in our community and his commitment to the continuation of the traditional Mass of the ages in this diocese. God bless him!

Our intention is to leave the blog up for those who are interested in reviewing this documentation of the history of the Old St. Patrick Oratory community. Thanks to the thousands of people who have visited here. God bless you!

You can still comment if you wish and we'll publish appropriate comments as they appear.

Here are how some of the traditionalist-leaning Catholic websites and Blogs do traffic-wise - Some very interesting statistics

Alexa Internet, Inc. is a subsidiary company of which provides commercial web traffic data. Founded as an independent company in 1996, Alexa was acquired by Amazon in 1999. Its toolbar collects data on browsing behavior and transmits it to the Alexa website, where it is stored and analyzed, forming the basis for the company's web traffic reporting. As of 2013, Alexa provides traffic data, global rankings and other information on 30 million websites, and its website is visited by over 10 million people monthly

(The number shows the global ranking of the sites compared to others - "1" is the highest - that's Google, naturally!)

Those listed are well-known websites and blogs familiar for their content and discussion of traditionalist Catholic matters. OK. Here goes...the ranking out of 30 million.

  • Knights of the Holy Sepulchre (Vatican) - 11,899
  • Father Z's Blog - 33,811
  • - 105,050
  • Rorate-Caeli - 114,041
  • New Liturgical Movement - 211,682
  • Sancta Missa - 1,554,714
  • - 2,678,067
  • Institute of Christ the King - 3,661,932
  • St. Louis Catholic Blog - 7,067,827
  • Catholic Key Blog (Kansas City) - 10,802,604
  • Benedictines of Mary (traditionalist nuns in northwest Missouri) - 11,806,152
  • Old Saint Patrick Oratory Blog (Kansas City) - 12,983,397. Not so hot, but at least we're listed!
  • Wholly Roman Catholic Blog - 16,444,749

Did you notice the bird on the Sistine Chapel smokestack?

Was the appearance of this seagull on the roof of the Sistine Chapel an hour or so prior to the appearance of the new pope, a precursor of the pope's selection of the name, Francis I? Perhaps St. Francis of Assisi might have been sending a subtle hint to the faithful of what's coming.

God Bless our new Holy Father...Francis I

Let us pray for Francis, our Pope. May the Lord preserve him, and give him life, and make him blessed upon the earth, and deliver him not up to the will of his enemies. 

 O God, Shepherd and Ruler of all Thy faithful people, look mercifully upon Thy servant, Francis, whom Thou hast chosen as shepherd to preside over Thy Church. Grant him, we beseech Thee, that by his word and example, he may edify those over whom he hath charge, so that together with the flock committed to him, may he attain everlasting life. Through Christ our Lord. Amen

Pope Benedict XVI’s Musical Legacy

Benedict XVI
By Jeffery Tucker 
Reprinted courtesy of  Crisis Magazine

One of the many lasting legacies of the papacy of Benedict XVI will be liturgical music. Enormous progress has been made in his papacy. Incredibly this progress has happened without new legislation, new restrictions, new mandates, or firm-handed attempts to impose discipline on musicians and artists. The change has happened through the means that Benedict XVI has always preferred: he has led through example and through the inspiration provided by his homilies and writings.
You can observe the difference by watching any Papal liturgy, whether live or on television or through webcast. Gregorian chant is back but not just as a style preferred to the pop music that still dominates parish liturgy. More importantly, chant is back in its rightful place as the sung prayer of the liturgy. Viewers can now depend on hearing the chanted introit from the liturgical books at every Mass. The communion chant is sung. The offertory chant has made a return in many Masses. Incredibly, even the ancient version of the Psalm between the readings has more recently been employed as a deeply contemplative alternative to the responsorial version most people hear at Mass.
The musical legacy turns the tide and foreshadows a future of beauty in Catholic art.
The musical issue in the Catholic Church has been fraught with controversy for many centuries. This is nothing new. Nor is the postconciliar crisis in music something particularly new in Church history. We tend to think it is just because we experience it so intensely. And this feature is precisely what makes liturgical music such a dicey issue. It affects everyone in the pew in the most profound way. Everyone has an opinion, and it is rarely positive.
Truly, you have to put yourself in the frame of mind of someone who doesn’t entirely understand what happened to liturgical music after 1965 to fully appreciate the shock that comes when one first encounters the parish reality. You step into the church with a hope for a profound religious experience, something like what you might have seen in a movie or heard about from popular chant CDs. Instead of solemn music, you are hit by an upbeat song about gathering as a community or a tune that seems to belong on an evangelical radio station. It can be deeply alarming for anyone who is not yet acculturated to the reality.
The question everyone asks is: how did this happen? The second question everyone asks is: why doesn’t someone stop it?
The answers to both questions are complex.
The musical agenda of the Second Vatican Council, as Benedict XVI well understood because he was there, was to more closely link the music with the liturgy, and to realize the hope of the Liturgical Movement that people would be actively involved in hearing and singing this music. The hope was to turn the tide away from “Low Mass” with four English hymns—which had become standard practice in many parts of the world—toward the liturgical ideal in which the core music of the rite was an extension of the liturgical text itself.
Gregorian chant is that ideal because it grew up alongside the Roman Rite ritual. It uses the text of that ritual. Its musical structure is a reflection of the liturgical purpose of the music. That’s why the chant between the readings is long and contemplative whereas the music of the entrance is more syllabic, thematically evocative, and forward feeling.
These features of chant have long been understood by competent experts in the field. It is an “inestimable treasure,” as the Council said. The Council even made a clear declaration, for the first time in Church history, that Gregorian chant should have the first place at Mass, and that people should sing the parts of the Mass that belong to them.
That agenda seems clear enough but there was a wrinkle. The Council also authorized a change in the language from all-Latin to some English, leaving the apportionment to the national conferences. Well, it didn’t take long before English was everywhere. Latin chant vanished over the course of only a few years. The common preconciliar practice of English hymns went on hyperdrive. By the late sixties, even before the introduction of the new Missal, pop music at Mass had become the norm. Gregorian chant was a distant memory. This was a case study in a plan that had gone very wrong.
And so it remained for forty years, which raises the question: why didn’t someone do something to stop this? I think often of the average parish situation. The pastor is not typically a trained musician. He doesn’t usually have money to hire trained musicians. He has to depend on the resources he has at his disposal. The last thing he can do is alienate the musicians in his parish, who are doing what they think is best. It does no good to march up to them and say: sing Gregorian chant. They can’t. They can’t read the notes. They can’t understand the language. The singers lack experience and the guitar players have no understanding whatsoever. Plus, the shift might be too much for the congregation. Lacking any clear way out, the pastor grits his teeth and learns to adapt. The same is true for the laity.
Popes since Vatican II have attempted to turn the tide. Paul VI saw what was happening and regretted it all greatly. His solution appeared in 1974. It was a book of Latin music that he sent to all Bishops in the world, giving them permission to freely copy and use it. It was a proposal for a new core music for liturgy. He wrote: please “decide on the best ways of teaching the faithful the Latin chants of Jubilate Deo and of having them sing them…. You will thus be performing a new service for the Church in the domain of liturgical renewal.”
This fell on deaf ears. The music ended up in the waste can. His successor John Paul II issued several very important statements that similarly urged a change. They were beautifully written and inspiring. But again, it had no effect. In the intervening years, a large industry of private publishers had already arisen to provide music to parishes on a subscription basis. Everyone was already hooked on this pop material. All the urges from Rome to embrace the musical ideals of the Second Vatican Council amounted to nothing.
Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was different. He had written an entire book on the music issue. He had written another book on the liturgical question. He had spoken about the subject on many occasions. He never feared the subject and this is for two reasons: 1) he understood the goals of Vatican II and saw that they had been seriously distorted, and 2) he was a trained music of the highest calibre who understood the role of music in the Roman Rite.
When he became Pope, the changes began and they were relentless. We started hearing chant in Papal liturgy, just a bit at first and then more as time went on. With Summorum Pontificum (2007) he took away the stigma that had been attached to traditional chant by granting full permission to the liturgical structure that had originally given rise to chant. This was deeply encouraging for a generation that was ready to move forward. We started seeing chant workshops fill up. Groups began to form at the parish level. New resources started to be published by independent publishers. A real fire had been lit in the Catholic music world. And it all happened without any impositions or legislation.
The musical program of St. Peter’s Basilica began to attract the attention of serious musicians. A new standard came to be applied to visiting choirs: you must know the basics of Gregorian chant or you cannot sing at St. Peter’s. This was a gigantic decision that fundamentally upset the dynamic that had long developed between Rome and traveling choirs. Now choirs had to learn and discover chant if they hoped to take that long-sought pilgrimage to Rome.
Meanwhile, Joseph Ratzinger’s writings on music were selling more than ever, and having an ever larger influence. Benedict XVI spoke about the topic often in homilies and spontaneous remarks following concerts. He worked to elevate high art to a new status on his travels. His team worked hard to encourage groups that sang for liturgy for his trips to embrace chant and polyphonic music of the Renaissance. It didn’t always work but the progress was obvious.
Today we look at the situation and marvel. It is a beautiful thing to see and hear. The chant is back and not just in Latin. Some of the biggest-selling books in the English world are pushing English chant—forty years late but it is still a triumph. And we should not forget the huge importance of the new English Missal that came out in 2011. It has more music embedded in it than any Missal ever published, and it is entirely chanted. This was a bold move, pushed hard by Rome under the leadership of Benedict XVI.
The legacy is much larger and much long-lasting than that. A priest friend wrote the following:
I am a priest of the Benedict XVI Generation.
The way that I approach theology, liturgy, preaching, pastoral life, everything, has been profoundly influenced by this amazing man.  I will always thank God for his constant presence in my life, and in the lives of those I touch because of his example to me.  I have enough sentiment in me to want to write the Holy Father personally to tell him all this, but I know that he will never receive it.  But even in that he continues to teach me.
We are not out of the woods yet but the progress is very much in evidence. The future is clear. Chant will again be the universal music of the Roman Rite. New compositions will be inspired by it. It will have first place in the liturgy. Music appropriate to the liturgy will follow its inspiration.
What I find most impressive is the method that the pope used to achieve this. It was through inspiration and not imposition. For this reason, this change is fundamental and lasting. Mark my words: chant will come to a parish near you. We can thank Benedict XVI for his wisdom and foresight in achieving what most people thought was impossible.
As he has understood, the musical question is only superficially about style. The real substance of the question concerns what elevates the text and reflects the liturgical purpose of glorifying God. In the long run, there can be no separation between the Roman Rite and the music that is native to it. If that point seems obvious now, it is only because the papacy of Benedict XVI made it so.
Jeffrey Tucker is managing editor of Sacred Music and publications editor of the Church Music Association of America. He also runs the Chant Cafe Blog.

Goodbye. God Bless. Thank you for your shepherding.

There will be tears. And, sadly there will also be cheers.

Benedict XVI has announced his resignation effective at the end of the month.

"Dear Brothers,

I have convoked you to this Consistory, not only for the three canonizations, but also to communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church. After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry. I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering. However, in today’s world, subject to so many rapid changes and shaken by questions of deep relevance for the life of faith, in order to govern the bark of Saint Peter and proclaim the Gospel, both strength of mind and body are necessary, strength which in the last few months, has deteriorated in me to the extent that I have had to recognize my incapacity to adequately fulfill the ministry entrusted to me. For this reason, and well aware of the seriousness of this act, with full freedom I declare that I renounce the ministry of Bishop of Rome, Successor of Saint Peter, entrusted to me by the Cardinals on 19 April 2005, in such a way, that as from 28 February 2013, at 20:00 hours, the See of Rome, the See of Saint Peter, will be vacant and a Conclave to elect the new Supreme Pontiff will have to be convoked by those whose competence it is.

Dear Brothers, I thank you most sincerely for all the love and work with which you have supported me in my ministry and I ask pardon for all my defects. And now, let us entrust the Holy Church to the care of Our Supreme Pastor, Our Lord Jesus Christ, and implore his holy Mother Mary, so that she may assist the Cardinal Fathers with her maternal solicitude, in electing a new Supreme Pontiff. With regard to myself, I wish to also devotedly serve the Holy Church of God in the future through a life dedicated to prayer."

From the Vatican,

10 February 2013

Update: Now experts in Canon Law are discussing all the legal ramifications of the Pope's announcement. Without expressing any opinion of the data in this link, here's is a Canon Law authority quoted in a Wall Street Journal legal blog.

Father Z. also has some very interesting information about the formation and execution of the impending Conclave under these most unusual circumstances.

How to annoy a liberal...


Spooky Coincidence!

Have a history teacher explain this----- if they can?

Abraham Lincoln was elected to Congress in 1846. 
John F. Kennedy was elected to Congress in 1946.

Abraham Lincoln was elected President in 1860.
John F. Kennedy was elected President in 1960.

Both were particularly concerned with civil rights.
Both wives lost their children while living in the White House.

Both Presidents were shot on a Friday.
Both Presidents were shot in the head.

Now it gets really weird.

Lincoln's secretary was named Kennedy.
Kennedy's Secretary was named Lincoln.

Both were assassinated by Southerners.
Both were succeeded by Southerners named Johnson.

Andrew Johnson, who succeeded Lincoln, Was born in 1808.
Lyndon Johnson, who succeeded Kennedy, was born in 1908.

John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated Lincoln, Was born in 1839.
Lee Harvey Oswald, who assassinated Kennedy, was born in 1939.

Both assassins were known by their three names.
Both names are composed of fifteen letters.

Now hang on to your seat.

Lincoln was shot at the theater named 'Ford.'
Kennedy was shot in a car called 'Lincoln' made by 'Ford.'

Lincoln was shot in a theater and his assassin ran and hid in a warehouse.
Kennedy was shot from a warehouse and his assassin ran and hid in a theater.

Booth and Oswald were both assassinated before their trials.

Be Proud You're A Catholic!

Excerpts of an article written by non-Catholic Sam Miller - a prominent Cleveland Jewish businessman:
"Why would newspapers carry on a vendetta on one of the most important institutions that we have today in the United States, namely the Catholic Church?

Do you know - the Catholic Church educates 2.6 million students everyday at the cost to that Church of 10 billion dollars, and a savings on the other hand to the American taxpayer of 18 billion dollars. The graduates go on to graduate studies at the rate of 92%.

The Church has 230 colleges and universities in the U.S. with an enrollment of 700,000 students.

The Catholic Church has a non-profit hospital system of 637 hospitals, which account for hospital treatment of 1 out of every 5 people - not just Catholics - in the United States today

But the press is vindictive and trying to totally denigrate in every way the Catholic Church in this country. They have blamed the disease of pedophilia on the Catholic Church, which is as irresponsible as blaming adultery on the institution of marriage.

Let me give you some figures that Catholics should know and remember. For example,

12% of the 300 Protestant clergy surveyed admitted to sexual intercourse with a parishioner.

38% acknowledged other inappropriate sexual contact in a study by the United Methodist Church.

41.8% of clergy women reported unwanted sexual behavior.

17% of laywomen have been sexually harassed.

Meanwhile, 1.7% of the Catholic clergy has been found guilty of pedophilia.

10% of the Protestant ministers have been found guilty of pedophilia. This is not a Catholic Problem.

A study of American priests showed that most are happy in the priesthood and find it even better than they had expected, and that most, if given the choice, would choose to be priests again in face of all this obnoxious PR the church has been receiving.

The Catholic Church is bleeding from self-inflicted wounds. The agony that Catholics have felt and suffered is not necessarily the fault of the Church. You have been hurt by a small number of wayward priests that have probably been totally weeded out by now.

Walk with your shoulders high and you head higher. Be a proud member of the most important non-governmental agency in the United States .

Then remember what Jeremiah said: 'Stand by the roads, and look and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is and walk in it, and find rest for your souls'. Be proud to speak up for your faith with pride and reverence and learn what your Church does for all other religions.
Be proud that you're a Catholic.

America's Bishops say "NO!"

In the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Archbishop of Philadelphia, Charles Chaput, succinctly expresses the essence of the Church's stance on the Obama attack on religious organizations, the belief's and faith.

The headline is: HHS Mandate is Insulting and Dangerous
Here's an excerpt from the article:
"The current administration prides itself on being measured and deliberate.

The current HHS mandate needs to be understood as exactly that. Commentators are using words like “gaffe,” “ill conceived,” and “mistake” to describe the mandate. They’re wrong.

It’s impossible to see this regulation as some happenstance policy. It has been too long in the making.

Despite all of its public apprehension about “culture warriors” on the political right in the past, the current administration has created an HHS mandate that is the embodiment of culture war. At its heart is a seemingly deep distrust of the formative role religious faith has on personal and social conduct, and a deep distaste for religion’s moral influence on public affairs. To say that this view is contrary to the Founders’ thinking and the record of American history would be an understatement.

Critics may characterize my words here as partisan or political. These are my personal views, and of course people are free to disagree. But it is this administration – not Catholic ministries, or institutions, or bishops – that chose the timing and nature of the fight. The onus is entirely on the White House, which also has the power to remove the issue from public conflict.

Catholics should not be misled into accepting feeble compromises on issues of principle. The HHS mandate is bad law; and not merely bad, but dangerous and insulting. It needs to be withdrawn – now."

Ave Maria University says..."NO!"

Kansas City STAR calls for Bishop Finn's resignation...what a bunch of nonsense!

There is not a single shred of doubt in this writer's mind that Bishop Finn has done everything possible to punish past evil actions perpetrated by some priest's in the Kansas City-St. Joseph diocese. There is also not a single shred of doubt that he has done everything humanly possible to institute safeguards to protect children in the diocese now and for the future.

This morning the Kansas City STAR editorial board published a scurrilous and transparently biased opinion that called for our beloved Bishop Finn to resign. (Click here to ruin your day).

Our Bishop has proven himself time after time, instance after instance as the finest leader of our diocese in living memory. If you have time, please write the STAR regarding this cheap shot at Robert Finn.

The Kansas City STAR is nearly bankrupt financially...and not too far from closing the doors. Publishing nonsense such as this won't help its survival in a dying industry.

UPDATE: Here are some reactions by the faithful this far...

FYI - Holy Week Schedule

Holy Thursday - April 21st
High Mass at 7:00 p.m. followed by Adoration until midnight

Good Friday - April 22nd
Stations of the Cross at 12:00 Noon
Good Friday Liturgy at 6:30 p.m.

Holy Saturday - April 23rd
Easter Vigil at 8:30 p.m.

Easter Sunday - April 24th
Low Mass at 8:00 a.m.
High Mass at 10:15 a.m.

Old St. Patrick Oratory's Canon William Avis to be interviewed on Catholic Radio

A parishioner sends this info about radio interview.

Canon Avis will be on Catholic radio (1090 AM) this Wednesday, April 13th from 3:00 to 4:00 pm CDT. You can also pick it up at

He will be talking about Old St. Patrick Oratory's life, himself and the Catholic Church with the KEXS host.


Benedictine Barn Raising!

You are cordially invited to assist the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles in a barn raising on Saturday April 16th beginning at 9 am. We will be erecting a cow shed and enclosing a pasture for a milk cow. We hope to complete both projects in one day, so bring your family and friends!

All are invited.

  • Those that have carpentry skills should bring saws, hammers, tin snips and battery powered drills to erect the cow shed. Limited electrical power will be available via a portable generator.
  • Fence builders are also needed. Bring post hole diggers, metal stake drivers, wire cutters and heavy pliers to assist in building a barbless fence with electric wire.
  • Plenty of “go fers” (as in go fer this and go fer that”) are also needed. So, if you don’t have much experience in building, we need plenty of people to move fence supplies into position so other can drive them into the ground and shuttle barn pieces to those erecting the barn. This is perfect for those with older children.
Location - The Sisters are located approximately 45 minutes north of Kansas City, and 10 minutes north of Gower, Mo. Click here for a map.

Priory or Our Lady of Ephesus
8005 NW 316th Street
Gower, MO. 64454

Questions and RSVP – Please contact Paul Villotti with questions. In order to know how many to expect for lunch, please let Paul know how many will be in your party. Feel free to leave a message.
Home – 816-862-6368
Cell - 816-872-6120

Those wishing to help offset the cost of this work may send donations to Mother Cecilia at the Priory. Please make a note that the donation is for the barn project. The Sisters thank you for all your help and prayers for the successful completion of this project.

P.S. Those wishing to assist with prep work this Saturday, April 2nd at 9 am. should contact Paul so we can have enough for lunch. Thanks in advance for all your help!

Christmas at Gower!

The Benedictine Sisters have moved into their new home and it is beautiful. Here are a couple of photos. The first is of their new chapel. The second is a White Christmas at the new convent. For more photos and information, click here.

Parishoner Alan Troyer played a generous part in a story of leukemia defeated

Alan, who has been a parishioner at Old Saint Patrick and at the Our Lady of Sorrows Latin Mass Community has been a regular donor of blood at the Community Blood Bank. Over the years, he has donated over 20 gallons.

But, donors and recipients very seldom have the opportunity to meet. That changed recently as this story broadcast on various TV stations in Kansas City reported last night and this morning.

It is a very moving story...about usually anonymous donors helping others defeat serious surgery or diseases. Just click on the video to play.

Couldn't resist placing the newest "Kansas Catholic" in this setting

In a post this morning the Kansas Catholic blog announced the birth of their newest child yesterday afternoon. This blogger, with probably more time on our hands than is healthy, took the newborn's picture to a fanciful extreme. Couldn't help it. All our blessings go out to the new baby girl and the entire family.

Vatican Library re-opens after a three-year renovation

Members of OSP know well about long renovation projects. According to the Associated Press, this beautiful photograph, is a view of the Sistine Hall, part of the Vatican Apostolic Library, Vatican City, Monday, Sept. 13, 2010. The Vatican's Apostolic Library is reopening to scholars following a three-year renovation to improve its cataloging and security measures.The library, which houses one of the world's best collections of illuminated manuscripts, opens its doors Sept. 20. Details will be announced Monday at a press conference. The library was started by Pope Nicholas V in the 1450s with an initial 350 Latin manuscripts. By the time Nicholas died in 1455, the collection had swelled to about 1,500 codices and was the largest in Europe.

On the way to Florida

As many of you know, Robin and I are moving to Florida. Robin has had the wonderful fortune to be offered the position of teaching 1st grade at Ave Maria University's preparatory school, Donahue Academy. It is her "dream job". And as much as we love Kansas City and Old St. Patrick, it was an offer that we couldn't refuse.

It happened very quickly and unexpectedly. She has now been 'on the job' for three weeks and I will be joining her this coming week...after getting many things settled in Kansas City. Robin loves it! After years teaching in a public school atmosphere, this assignment is a blessing for her and for us. The school is ideal in philosophy and reality. The children and the families are as good as you could possibly imagine. And the beautiful new town of Ave Maria, Florida is a blessing in all respects. Plus, the Gulf of Mexico is just a half-hour drive! No oil on Naples, FL pristine beaches.

Here are a few pictures: 1) the first is a photo of the school; 2) the second is a photo of the condominium building in which we will be living; and 3) the third is our view from the apartment at night toward the magnificent Ave Maria Oratory just across the street from where we live.

We hope to continue blogging from time to time about Old St. Patrick Oratory doings. But we must rely on folks sending us the news. We will return from time to time to Kansas City and will spend next summer here in our home.

This is a standing invitation to any who might visit S.W. Florida and would like a tour of Ave Maria Town and University. As soon as we get some furniture, we may have a spare room available too. God bless all OSP members and those who read this weblog. A.M.D.G.

P.S. We want to express greetings from Virginia and Patrick Hanley who are neighbors at Ave Maria. The Hanley's were members of the Latin Mass Community at Our Lady of Sorrows in Kansas City for a number of years, leaving to move to Delaware and eventually to Ave Maria. They have been very kind and helpful to us in getting settled.

A reminder that laughter is the best medicine...

With a mother who is 93 and a with a Father who just died this year at age 96, and as a senior citizen myself, I was moved to emotion and to "rolling-in-the-aisles" laughter at this prayer given by a senior citizen at a banquet of senior care professionals. Hope you enjoy it.

5th Anniversary of Bishop Finn's announcement of our move to Old St. Patrick is celebrated

A small group of Old St. Patrick parishioners gathered Saturday evening, August 14th to commemorate Bishop Finn's visit to Our Lady of Sorrows and our 9:15 a.m. Mass five years ago on August 14, 2005 to tell us that he was giving us the use of Old St. Patrick Oratory for the exclusive celebration of the traditional Latin Mass.

Bishop Finn honored the gathering with his presence. In an emotional and extremely well-spoken presentation, parishioner Paul Villotti presented Bishop Finn with a remembrance of the evening -- a beautiful crucifix, the corpus of which was carved by his son Jacob Villotti and then cast in plaster. The cross-pieces of wood of the crucifix were constructed of salvaged pine flooring from the renovation of the Oratory. It was strikingly done.

Bishop Finn thanked all for the celebration and the gift. He also thanked Canon Avis and the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest for agreeing to assume the service of the Old St. Patrick Oratory community. Bishop Finn's comments were clearly heartfelt and, as always, full of humor that caused laughter, cheers and and great satisfaction.

The evening also celebrated the birth date of Don Deister R.I.P, who would have been 75 years old that date. Don's widow, Bernie Deister and his son Craig Deister were on hand to celebrate with us.

The celebration was sponsored by Paul and Felicia Villotti, Joe and Jo Ann Farris and by John and Robin Quastler. Photos of a few of those in attendance follow...

Very Happy Families...Old St. Patrick's Jack Potts marries in California

Parishioner Jack Potts and Anne Marie Sauder of Ponce, Puerto Rico were joined in Holy Matrimony July 24th in Ventura, California. Jack is the son of John and Jennifer Potts of Kansas City. The bride is the daughter of Carl and Kathy Sauder of Puerto Rico. Anne Marie's parents were both graduates of Thomas Aquinas College as are the newly-weds. The couple plans to return to Kansas City to form their new home as Jack will continue his education by studying for a nursing degree. Our very best wishes to Jack and Anne Marie!!!
(Shown in the photo are (left to right): John Potts, Jenny Potts, Jack Potts and Anne Marie Sauder Potts.)

Garden of our God!

In Colorado, just an hour and eight minutes by air...there are naturally astonishing vistas that native Americans thought were the work of many deities. But of course, we know differently. This view was taken in the 1,500+ acre Garden of the Gods park looking toward Pike's Peak in the center shrouded that morning with low clouds. This park is a "don't miss" attraction if you're in the Colorado Springs area.

Latin Mass in the Denver Diocese - Strong and Thriving

Yesterday morning when we left to return to Kansas City after a week in the mountains it was 59 degrees. Quite a difference in temperature when we stepped off the plane. The thermostat in our car at KCI airport parking lot read 112 degrees.

But, back to the point! We had the opportunity during our visit to attend Mass at the FSSP apostolate in Littleton, Colorado (Denver diocese). Father James Jackson, FSSP is the pastor. Many of you may know Father as he's from the midwest and a product of the KU Humanities program. The photo above was taken at the High Mass this last Sunday.

This parish, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel is extremely healthy with near capacity attendance at three Masses on Sundays. The parish, which is dedicated solely to the Extraordinary Form of the Mass as is Old St. Patrick, is in the midst of a capital campaign to build a new church and social facilities. Here's an architect's rendering of the new building design. Looks beautiful doesn't it? Our prayers for their successful fund-raising goes to them.

360 Degree Viewing of the Sistine Chapel.

Follow this link for a spectacular view of the Sistine Chapel. Just move your mouse over the image when the picture fully loads. It allows you to move around, up and down and also allows you to enlarge or reduce any segment of the video. The only thing better would be to actually visit the chapel in person. A reader sent this link for our enjoyment.

Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles showing great progress on their first building

The sisters are moving ahead with the initial building on their property near St. Joseph, MO. For more pictures, click here. To help the sisters financially, click here.

The Holy Father...prepared to avoid the hot sun

The photo is for real. The logo of the local heros is just part of the blogger's fanciful imagination.

Blessing of herbs, flowers and fruits on the Feast of the Assumption

We hate to admit to this ignorance, but we'd never heard of this pious practice before Canon Avis announced it in Sunday's bulletin. In doing a little further research we discovered Father Mark Daniel Kirby's blog with a wealth of information about its history and symbolism. Father Kirby is the Prior of the Diocesan Benedictine Monastery of Our Lady of the Cenacle in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Here's a part of the post. You can read the entire article here.
"Christians of both East and West have, from very early times, blessed herbs and fruit on the Feast of the Assumption. Thus blessed, these creatures become sacramentals of the Church and portents of divine protection from dangers to soul and body. In some places the herbs were placed on the altar, and even beneath the altar linens, so that from this proximity to the Most Holy Eucharist they might receive a special hallowing, beyond that conferred by the blessing prayers of the Church."
We are looking forward to experiencing this blessing prior to the Masses at Old St. Patrick Oratory on August 15th.

Development News in our neighborhood

The previously announced development in the East Village area adjoining Old St. Patrick has been pretty dormant over the last couple of years other than the construction of the J.E. Dunn headquarters. About all that has happened is some demolition of deteriorated structures.

Now there are good reports in the news. If they come to fruition, they will eventually result in new quality development in the vicinity of the church.

According to the Kansas City Business Journal, ground will be broken in August for the construction of a 50 unit apartment project just to the south and east of us at 9th and Holmes.

According to the article, this project could be an ice-breaker now that the recession seems to be recessing a little. News of more development should be forthcoming. The Fed's Government Services Administration is still considering building a 600,000 square foot building at 12th and Charlotte. If the GSA deal goes, another likely project is a large motel nearby. Also in the works is a renovation to commercial space of the old Blackstone Hotel just across the street from the church parking lot at 817 Cherry.

The East Village developer says that its long range plan includes between 500 and 1,000 new rental units that could ultimately be converted to condominiums.

In addition, the FAA has apparently received some federal funds to help build a parking structure on the site of the demolished Cherry Street Motel just up the street from the church. This parking will be for FAA building only, just south of OSP, but that will help the overall parking situation in the area.

This all sounds pretty good! Let's keep our fingers crossed and quality investment in our neighborhood in our prayers.

Another spiritual destination in St. Louis - The Cathedral Basilica

Should you visit St. Louis for the Vatican Splendors exhibit (see the previous post below), DO NOT miss attending Mass at the Cathedral Basilica just down the street from the Missouri History Museum. This photo of the nave of the basilica was taken last fall at the conclusion of the investiture of new knights and ladies into the Order of Knights of the Holy Sepulcher of Jerusalem. This is stunning architecture!

Here's splendid destination for a week-end motor trip this summer

"Vatican Splendors: A Journey through Faith and Art: will be showing at the Missouri History Museum in Forest Park - St. Louis, Missouri through Sept. 12.

The exhibit is a fantastic walk through 10,000 square feet of Vatican treasures of art and history... from Michelangelo to the relics of St. Peter. The exhibit explores the close relationship among the papacy, art and culture through historical maps, drawings of architecture commissioned by the Vatican, paintings, sculpture and objects of faith from around the world.

This is the largest collection of Vatican artifacts ever to tour the U.S., and the exhibition is organized into 11 galleries that illustrate the evolution of the Church and its papacy beginning with Saint Peter through the papacy of Pope Benedict XVI, with thematic areas highlighting important developments, moments, people and events tied to the history of the Catholic Church and the Vatican, reflected in both important historical objects and artistic expression from different eras. The objects are presented in recreated environments that enhance the visitor's understanding of their historical and artistic significance. For more detail check out the exhibit website here.

The Missouri History Museum is at Lindell and Debaliviere in Forest Park (5700 Lindell Blvd.)

Cost: (...a modest...) $19.50 for adults; $17 for seniors and students; $13 for children ages six through 12; Children 5 and under are admitted free.

After the exhibit closes in middle September it continues its tour next at the Heinz History Museum in Pittsburgh, PA. opening October 2, 2010.

Here's a good bargain for the trip: Amtrak has a package deal that includes:
  • Round-Trip Amtrak Rail Service in Coach Seating
  • 2 Nights Accommodations at Sheraton City Center (Other Hotels Available)
  • VIP Admission to Vatican Splendors at the Missouri History Museum
  • Admission to the Gateway Arch Tram
  • All Taxes
For pricing from various Amtrack cities click here.

A charming and unique rendition of "DO-RE-MI" from the "Sound of Music"

You'll love this semi-staged, but yet spontaneous video.

Institute posts photos of ordinations

If you can read French you will appreciate a little better what is going on in the photographs on the Institute's international website.

On July 1st, Archbishop Raymond Burke officiated at the ordination of new priests of the order, at the church of San Michele e Gaetano in Florence, Italy.

Ordained were: Aaron Huberfeld (American), Michael Stein (American), and Antoine Bucheron (French).

The photographs of the ceremonies are excellent.

Pithy Health Advice

Children lead the procession

In a wonderful stop-motion photo of the beginning of the bi-diocesan Corpus Christi procession on June 6th, the photographer, Elaina Cochran shooting for The Leaven newspaper caught the lead children leaving the doors of Old St. Patrick Oratory by beginning to spread flower petals over the path of the Holy Eucharist to follow.

According to "The Catechism Explained" authored by Rev. Francis Spirago, © 1921, children take the lead in solemn processions because their greater innocence renders them more pleasing to God.

Holiday Celebrations Get An Early Start

From our den window, we were entertained last night with a lovely fireworks celebration from what we believe was the Kansas City Country Club a mile or so west of us. Also, this photo shows a bright Venus clearly in the western sky.

Bishop Finn's recent homily on the occasion of the feast of St. Josemaria Escriva founder of Opus Dei

Homily for Mass of St. Josemaria Escriva
June 26, 2010 – Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish
Most Reverend Robert W. Finn
Bishop of Kansas City-St. Joseph

Wonderful story...Unbelieveable Photograph

Please read before viewing the following picture -
it's worth it!

Although the event described in the post below took place over 10 years ago, only recently did we become aware of it. It should be 'The Picture of the Year,' or perhaps, 'Picture of the Decade.' It won't be. In fact, unless you obtained a copy of the US paper which published it, you probably would never have seen it.

The picture is that of a 21-week-old unborn baby named Samuel Alexander Armas , who is being operated on by surgeon named Joseph Bruner.

The baby was diagnosed with spina bifida and would not survive if removed from his mother's womb. Little Samuel's mother, Julie Armas, is an obstetrics nurse in Atlanta . She knew of Dr. Bruner's remarkable surgical procedure. Practicing at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, he performs these special operations while the baby is still in the womb.

During the procedure, the doctor removes the uterus via C-section and makes a small incision to operate on the baby. As Dr.Bruner completed the surgery on Samuel, the little guy reached his tiny, but fully developed hand through the incision and firmly grasped the surgeon's finger. DrBruner was reported as saying that when his finger was grasped, it was the most emotional moment of his life, and that for an instant during the procedure he was just frozen, totally immobile.

The photograph captures this amazing event with perfect clarity. The editors titled the picture, 'Hand of Hope.' The text explaining the picture begins, 'The tiny hand of 21-week-old fetus Samuel Alexander Armas emerges from the mother's uterus to grasp the finger of Dr. Joseph Bruner as if thanking the doctor for the gift of life.'

Little Samuel's mother said they 'wept for days' when they saw the picture. She said, 'The photo reminds us pregnancy isn't about disability or an illness, it's about a little person.'Samuel was born in perfect health, the operation 100 percent successful.

Now see the actual picture, and it is awesome....incredible.....
Please pass the link to this post on. Everyone should see it!

György Kristóf Csanaky

Son of Ivan and Cecelia Csanaky, good friends of Old St. Patrick Oratory who have helped us on numerous occasions in the choir loft with their beautiful and professional singing talent. Born on June 16, 2010 weighing 9 lbs and 6.8 oz. He will be baptized as a parishioner of the St. Rose Philippine Duchesne Latin Mass Community this next Saturday at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in Kansas City, KS. Oratorians extend their best wishes to the Csanaky family.

New roof overhead at Old St. Patrick

You may not have noticed, but there is a new roof on the Oratory. Our understanding is that there was some storm/hail damage to the roof about a year and a half ago and that the insurance settlement agreement was recently completed. The damage was on one side of the roof only so that was covered by the insurance, however Canon Avis and the Institute decided to go ahead and re-roof the other side at the same time to save some expense.

To do this work now, in order to prevent water leakage onto our new (and very expensive) interior paint job was considered essential.

A little nostalgia this afternoon

Don't get me wrong! We have absolutely no regrets about our move to the beautifully re-done Old St. Patrick. But, we ran across this special artfully composed photo of Our Lady of Sorrows and couldn't help be a little nostalgic about our former home for Latin Mass for about 15 years. Our Lady of Sorrows is a stunningly beautiful church home that was perfect for the celebration of the Mass of the Ages. We've certainly been very fortunate to have had two of the nicest church homes in the entire diocese. This photo was taken by Neal60 (sorry, we don't have the name of the photographer, but you can see more examples of his work by clicking here.)

Angels get their pedestals at last

Unfortunately, we forgot our camera this morning and don't have a new photo of the beautiful pair of angels guarding either side of the sanctuary that are now mounted on their new pedestals. This photo to the left was taken during the October, 2008 consecration ceremonies. The angels were donated by Bob and Alice Umphress and since the completion of the renovation have sat at the base of pillars. Now they have their long-planned places of honor on concrete pedestals also donated by the Umphresses and painted by Joe Farris.

If you are interested here is some more information about the the history of these beautiful icons and how they came to the Umphresses' extensive collection of ecclesiastical art, click here for the previous post.

Meet David Wilson.

Yesterday afternoon the Blue Army organization held its Rosary Rally at Old St. Patrick. This regular monthly devotion of saying of the full Rosary has been continuously held around the two dioceses for over a quarter century. The Blue Army, a public association of the faithful, was formed in the late 1940's and early 50s to spread the message of Fatima.

When you attend in the Kansas City metro area, the man who leads the devotions, as he has for 15 years or so, is David Wilson. If you've been to a Rosary Rally you know that David's rich and pleasant baritone voice fills whatever church they have been invited to. But, you probably don't know that David and his wife Kathy make a 160 mile round-trip commute every time to do this from their home in Rossville, Kansas.

David and Kathy Wilson were previously members of the Latin Mass Community at Our Lady of Sorrows for a number of years before they relocated to rural central Kansas about 15 years ago. The Wilsons are also parents of Mother Gemma of Jesus of the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles sisters north of Kansas City.

All KC-SJ and Kansas diocese Catholics who attend Rosary Rallies have come to truly appreciate the Wilsons' leadership of the monthly event and their unselfish devotion to the Holy Rosary and bringing it to the faithful regularly.

Dreary Saturday

Last year when Canon Avis introduced the laudable practice of praying for good weather after Sunday Low Masses, we did a post on it here on the blog. Since we resumed occasional posting on this OSP community blog a month or so ago, we've received about 10 visits a week from people who are looking for a prayer to protect from bad weather and found our post on Google and other search engines. Looking out the window today into a steady downpour reminded us to be sure to pay particular and concentrated attention to tomorrow's prayer after 8:00 a.m. Mass.
Here's a portion of the prayer that we do at Old St. Patrick Oratory. "We beseech Thee, O Almighty God, through the intercession of Holy Mary, the Mother of God, of the holy angels, patriarchs, prophets, apostles, martyrs, confessors, virgins, widows, and of all Thy saints that Thou show us Thy continuing protection, permit tranquil winds, and also pour out to us, Thy unworthy servant, Thy safety from heaven above against lightning strikes and violent storms, and that Thou remain always protective of the human race and crush down the aerial powers by the right hand of Thy power. Through the same Christ the Lord....".

Two and a half minutes of Heavenly Music from the Catholic Music Assocation of America

To find out more about this organization of singers and musicians who love the traditional music of the Church, click here: Musica Sacra.

To listen: Click on the "go" arrow.

Have you ever heard of the heresy of "Immanentism"?

We recently ran across this term, were not familiar with it, and were curious about its derivation and anatomy. Unfortunately there's not much available in the typical sources. In 2001, Father Chad Rippinger, FSSP wrote a scholarly article in Latin Mass Magazine that touches on this philosophy and the deleterious effect that it had on the development and growth of the philosophy and belief in the wake of V.II of the rejection of ecclesiastical tradition. We thought you might like to read a little of this essay.
"(The) three sources of immanentism as they influenced the Church during the waning of an intellectual phase of Modernism in the 1950s and early 1960s provided the foundation for a psychological break from tradition as a norm. As Peter Bernardi observes, Blondel (Maurice Blondel, a French philosopher) was “working at a time when the Church was just beginning to become conscious of a certain break in its tradition.” The work of Blondel and the influx of the other modern philosophical points of view, which were antithetical to the ecclesiastical tradition, had a drastic impact on Vatican II. By the time Vatican II arrived, the intellectual foundation was in place for a systematic rejection of all aspects of ecclesiastical tradition.

Blondel and others, under the influence of modern philosophy, thought that modern man could not be satisfied with past ways of thinking. They provided an intellectual foundation upon which the Church, with a Council as a catalyst, could “update” itself or undergo an “aggiornamento.” With the foundations for the extrinsic tradition having been supplanted, the extrinsic tradition was lost. In other words, since the view of man had changed and since the view of the Deposit of Faith was subjected to a modern analysis, the extrinsic tradition, which rested upon these two, collapsed. We are currently living with the full-blown effects of that collapse. Catholics today have become fixated on the here and now, and in consequence the Church’s traditions have come to be treated not only as irrelevant but also as something to be distrusted and even, at times, demonized.

This has had several effects. The first is that those things that pertain to the extrinsic tradition and do not touch upon the intrinsic tradition are ignored. This manifests itself in the fact that some ecclesial documents today do not have any connection to the positions held by the Magisterium prior to the Second Vatican Council. For example, in the document of Vatican II on ecumenism, Unitatis Redintegratio, there is not a single mention of the two previous documents that deal with the ecumenical movement and other religions: Leo XIII’s Satis Cognitum and Pius XI’s Mortalium Animos. The approach to ecumenism and other religions in these documents is fundamentally different from the approach of the Vatican II document or Ut Unum Sint by Pope John Paul II. While the current Magisterium can change a teaching that falls under non-infallible ordinary magisterial teaching, nevertheless, when the Magisterium makes a judgment in these cases, it has an obligation due to the requirements of the moral virtue of prudence to show how the previous teaching was wrong or is now to be understood differently by discussing the two different teachings. However, this is not what has happened. The Magisterium since Vatican II often ignores previous documents which may appear to be in opposition to the current teaching, leaving the faithful to figure out how the two are compatible, such as in the cases of Mortalium Animos and Ut Unum Sint. This leads to confusion and infighting within the Church as well as the appearance of contradicting previous Church teaching without explanation or reasoned justification."