Apparently no one would accept the "Laetare Medal". Instead, a speech will be given by a former recipient

Read about it here in announcement from Notre Dame University.

First 300,000 "No Obama" Petition Signer names delivered to Notre Dame

According to the Cardinal Newman Society, more are on the way.

If you want to get in on this and sign the petition, joining over 347,000 signers thus far, click here.

The cost for printing and shipping 80 huge binders containing more than 64,000 sheets of paper, across the country and overseas, is more than $13,000. If you can assist the Cardinal Newman Society with a tax-deductible donation to defray these expenses, please click here.

The photo shows a couple of the binders full of signatures. Thanks to a reader (Ed K) for keeping us up to date on this valiant effort. 

European and North American demographics spell destruction of Christianity in 30 years

From Patrick Madrid, a very scary 7-Minutes. In this presentation he posits that birth control and abortion are assuring the total domination of Anglo-Saxon/Christian culture by Muslims...within just a little more than one generation. We are doing it to ourselves. If it continues as it has for the last 40 years, we are guaranteeing that our children and grandchildren will be living in Muslim-dominated countries. It will happen in Europe first. Then, not too many years later, we're next. No shots fired. A bloodless coup.   والله يعين! (God help us!).

Funny, funny, funny

The liberals are hard at work trying to cover for Fr. Jenkins and have apparently convinced CraigsList to remove the satirical post about Notre Dame's search for someone (anyone) to agree to take the "Laetare" Award. Here's the content of the ad...

Laetare Recipient Wanted (Notre Dame, IN)

Reply to:
Date: 2009-04-28, 9:24AM EDT

URGENT!!! Laetare Award recipient needed ASAP!!! Christian preferred, agnostic case-by-case. If interested call Fr. John at 574-631-5000 by May 17th.

Location: Notre Dame, IN
Compensation: no pay
PostingID: 1143896969
We tried replying to the post with a "huzzaah!", but got this message: "Sorry, but the craigslist user address you recently mailed ( does not seem to be valid. It could be you're trying to respond to a very old posting, or that the user has not requested anonymous email forwarding. Please check the address and try again."
Glad we were able to preserve a copy of this excruciatingly to-the-point satire.

Wierd News

A Vero Beach, FL priest is stabbed twice as he is finishing hearing confessions. A 57 year old woman is accused. She claims that the priest is the "anti-Christ". The priest, after hospital treatment for two wounds in the side is recovering. You can find the full report on this bizarre occurrence here. 

Well-Known Canon Law Expert, Dr. Edward Peters on the Notre Shame

"Mary Ann Glendon brings good out of evil.

"I see Dr. Mary Ann Glendon's refusal to provide cover for Notre Dame's inexcusable conferral of honors on a prominent pro-abortion politician as an application of Canon 209.1
'The Christian faithful, even in their own manner of acting, are always obliged to maintain communion with the Church", or of Canon 225.2 "According to each one's own condition, [laity] are also bound by a particular duty to imbue and perfect the order of temporal affairs with the spirit of the gospel and thus to give witness to Christ, especially in carrying out these same affairs and in exercising secular functions.'
"The evil that ND President Jenkins and his Board of Trustees committed has, Deus laudetur, occasioned one of the most striking displays of episcopal fortitude I can remember, mobilized hundreds of thousands of American Catholics against another quiet surrender to the Culture of Death, and effected notice to several once great Catholic institutions that it's time, finally, to decide where they stand.

I say, God bless Ambassador Glendon."

The Bishop's Annual Appeal - YOUR GENEROSITY helps many

In the diocese's update on the progress of the Bishop's Annual Appeal released recently, the news was very good. The giving of over $1.8 million dollars for this year is a 9% increase over last year's total. 

There are 99 parishes in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph. 46 of those parishes exceed their 2009 goal for giving. Old St. Patrick was one of the 46!

Once again, our small parish has shown how it rises to every challenge and never fails to demonstrate its caring for the broader community, individually and as an entirety. You should be proud of yourselves!

Notre Dame replies to Glendon's refusal of award - The hole gets deeper

The following statement from Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, is in response to the decision by Mary Ann Glendon to decline acceptance of the University's Laetare Medal (see earlier post today):
"We are, of course, disappointed that Professor Glendon has made this decision. It is our intention to award the Laetare Medal to another deserving recipient, and we will make that announcement as soon as possible."
We wonder who would accept the award under this's a couple of possibilities: Katherine Sebelius or Nancy Pelosi. Both prominent nominal Catholics who are totally in tune with the abortion-president, Obama. 

Mary Ann Glendon refuses to accept Notre Dame's highest honor

Mary Ann Glendon, the recent United States Ambassador to the Vatican, has said that she will not accept Notre Dame's highest honor, the "Laetare" Medal at the upcoming commencement ceremonies. 

In her letter to Notre Dame's President, Fr. John Jenkins, Glendon expressed dismay that Notre Dame chose to honor President Barack Obama despite his clear public stand against Catholic principles on key moral issues. She also voiced her discomfort with the university's suggestion that her own speech at the commencement exercises might counterbalance the Obama appearance. A commencement celebration, she said, "is not the right place, nor is a brief acceptance speech the right vehicle, for engagement with the very serious problems raised" by Notre Dame's decision to invite Obama in defiance of clear guidance from the US bishops.

Intrinsic Evil

This from...The Most Reverend Timothy A. Dolan, Archbishop of New York, explained during a recent interview that his opposition to Notre Dame’s slated honor for President Obama on May 17 is due to the President’s support for the “intrinsic evil” of abortion. He also contrasted abortion to other serious concerns, like the Iraq war and the death penalty, which “are open to some discussion and are not intrinsically evil.”

Intrinsicbelonging to a thing by its very nature. Evil: having or exerting a malignant influence 

Volunteers needed for church cleaning duties

Today's bulletin requested "ladies" to volunteer for cleaning duties periodically at the church.

Well, we are sure that the notice was not intended to express any sense of superiority of one gender over another regarding the ability to mop, sweep, dust and vacuum.

So, we are confident that "gentlemen" would also be welcomed on the cleaning team. To volunteer or for more information contact Canon Avis at his email address. Or you can call him at 816-931-5612.

Good Shepherd Sunday - With special emphasis on support of priestly vocations

"The Good Shepherd," says St. Gregory, "gave His life for His sheep, that in our sacrament He might change His Body and Blood into food with which to fill all whom He had ransomed. He has shown us the way we must follow to despise death, and set before our eyes the example which we must conform."

Today, Canon Avis emphasized the duties our shepherds, the priests of the Church to their flocks, and also our duty to support them with our worldly goods...for without the support of the laity there would be no good priests and there would be no Church.

Thus, a second collection this morning was dedicated to be used for the education and formation of the priests of The Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest at its seminary in Gricigliano, Italy.

The first photo below shows Villa Martelli at Gricigliano decorated with colors of the Holy See on the occasion of the granting of status of Apostolic Right on the Institute.
The following two photos show His Most Reverend Eminence Cardinal Franc Rodé, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life who ordained six new deacons in the beautiful chapel at Gricigliano Seminary in March of this year.

These photos above are from the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest international web site.

50 Years as a priest. Fr. Frank Kriski is featured in this week's Catholic Key

Father Frank Kriski, CSsR, is remembered certainly as one of the most respected and admired of the priests that served the Latin Mass Community at Our Lady of Sorrows. He was our chaplain from 2002 until 2005. He has recently observed his 50th anniversary as a priest and is recovering from prostate cancer for which he underwent surgery a couple of weeks ago.

John Heuertz, a member of Old St. Patrick, wrote this fine article published today in the Catholic Key.
"He’s one of the most gentle, humble and devoted priests I have had the pleasure to know." Kansas City area businessman Joe Farris speaks for many who know Fr. Francis Kriski, pastor since Advent of 2005 of Our Lady of Peace church on Kansas City's northeast side.

Francis Kriski was born in 1936 into a farming family in Elba, Nebraska, northwest of Grand Island. He's the only priest from his home town so far. A middle child, he grew up with four older sisters, three younger brothers and one younger sister. But he was threatened with a serious ear infection at once, and a kind of omen attended his Baptism.

"Our pastor was away for some reason, and the bishop himself was substituting in this little country parish," Fr. Kriski says. "But he was a Polish bishop." Francis' Baptism was quickly arranged, and Bishop Stanislaus Bona baptized him personally. Then he said to Francis' uncle and godfather, "Now it's up to you to make him a priest."

It was a close, religious family and Francis enjoyed pretending to say Mass for his brothers and sisters, using a colorful old rug as a chasuble. A great-uncle was a prominent Franciscan friar, and in 1950 Francis left home for a Franciscan minor seminary in Chicago. But he was 13 years old, and soon he was homesick. He came home that Christmas to stay until 1954, when he began formation as a Redemptorist after high school. "My uncle had talked for years about how much he liked the Redemptorists in Omaha, and my father wanted me to be a priest," he says. "I got a lot of support from my family."

He became a professed Redemptorist in 1958 - "It turned out the Redemptorists didn't go home for Christmas!" - and was ordained a priest six years later, taking parish assignments in Chicago, St. Louis, Denver, Kansas City and Indiana. He also served as an Army chaplain and a hospital chaplain. "Denver's General Hospital a big place with a big emergency room. You get calls at midnight, calls at 3 a.m. You do what you can do for people in ten minutes. The good thing is, if you make a mistake you can start over with the next person. In parish work, you have to live with your goof-ups."

Our Lady of Peace is in a diverse neighborhood with diverse issues, and pastoring a bilingual parish has a set of challenges all its own. "I learned Spanish in the seminary and I try to do as much in Spanish as I can, but I'm not really that fluent," he says. "Usually if I ask enough questions I can find out what someone is saying."

A less experienced priest might find fertile goof-up ground everywhere in this parish and neighborhood. But "Father Kriski's done a good job of balancing the needs of the two communities," says Deacon Don McCandless. "He did it by listening to people and soliciting ideas.

"He has a pastoral approach to people. I would describe him as being a very humble man."

"Our parish has always been Polish, Mexican, German, a real melting pot," says lifelong parishioner Mrs. Bernadine Ohmes. "But Fr. Kriski didn't come in like gangbusters wanting to change everything. He is so kind, and very easy to work with."

A truly green thumb is a gift, but a modest man might not mention it. "When he came to the parish he converted a small area in the back into a grotto," Mrs. Ohmes says. "He planted tulips and hostas and a rosebush for a statue of the Blessed Mother he put in. "He really takes pride in the grounds and we were happy to see that."

"I once brought him the Epistle and Gospel texts for that week's Latin Mass, and found him tending a small flower garden at Redemptorist church," says Michall Holmes of Lee's Summit. "He explained with great joy that tending the flowers was one of his responsibilities at Redemptorist.

"I've often thought his love for tending flowers was like his love for tending souls."

Fr. Kriski was ordained for the Tridentine (Latin) Mass, and over the years would sometimes say a private Tridentine Mass for friends - or even perform a small wedding in the old liturgy.
Thus he didn't start completely from scratch when he began serving Kansas City's Latin Mass community as chaplain and de facto pastor in Advent 2002.

"Vatican II has certainly had an impact on my life as a priest and it was positive, but I still hanker for the old days," he says. "Something important from the pre-Vatican II church seems to be missing. It's hard to put your finger on. Perhaps a kind of conviction is missing."

"There's something kind of missing from the English Mass too," he says. "It seems so plain. "There's no soul in it. The Latin Mass has soul. I enjoyed saying it."

He served the Latin Mass community for exactly three years, inheriting the community from Fr. Ambrose Karels and passing it on to priests of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest.

"Father Kriski was one of the finest priests to serve our community and we owe him much. Many thanks, Father," says community member John Quastler.

Perhaps many changes inside the Church since the 1960s were hardest on priests of all. "The priesthood was looked up to then, but I'd say it's different now," Father Kriski says. Yet the Catholic Church cannot function without priests.

Then where do vocations come from, especially in a changed environment? Prayer, meditation and family and community support are indispensable. “Altar boy service is probably one of the most important experiences in the formation of a young boy who feels he might have a vocation,” he says.

"Appreciation is a great thing. If you're doing something and people care, it adds a lot." Father Francis Kriski fought a recent, successful bout with cancer and might retire someday, to the extent that any dedicated priest retires. He looks forward to the Church's future with optimism.

"Sometimes it seems like nobody listens to anything the Church says," he says. "But if there's something beautiful, people are attracted to that and maybe that will help some people to stay with the Church.

"So my advice is to look to the future," he says. "As long as there's a future, there's hope."

Just discovered another local blogger...

Nice blog. To give it a try, click here.

Notre Dame's President, Rev. John Jenkins, travels in style

Did you know that Notre Dame has a private jet? We posted yesterday that Fr. Jenkins was having an unannounced meeting at the White House...for what purpose isn't clear yet. But he went "first class" in his own private airplane, a Cessna 560 Citation V (sample of which shown above). Also, we discovered that you can track the flights of any private plane. Here's Notre Dame's recent flight schedule - showing a flight from South Bend to Washington Dulles yesterday morning. We're still waiting to see if anything is announced concerning the content of whatever meeting Fr. Jenkins was having there. Well, with 42 Bishops already on record decrying the Notre Dame Shame, Father Jenkins may not be traveling so elegantly in the coming months.

Notre Dame President is visiting the White House for an unannounced meeting

It's just a rumor. But according to Catholic World News, it is from a reliable source.

One can easily speculate...and earnestly pray...that Father Jenkins has come to his senses and journeyed to Washington to withdraw his invitation to Barak Obama to speak at the university's commencement and receive an honorary doctorate.

Bishop Finn fervently requested that outcome in his thoughts posted on this blog yesterday afternoon.

If this meeting is for this purpose, we'll probably hear about it soon. Stay tuned.

Archbishop of St. Louis Appointment

Robert Carlson is the new Archbishop St. Louis
Bishop Robert J. Hermann, Archdiocesan Administrator for St. Louis, called Archbishop-elect Carlson “a very energetic, articulate, warm and gifted pastor and administrator. He thinks and works with the Church he loves, and will continue to build upon the legacy of his predecessors here in St. Louis.”

Archbishop–elect Carlson was installed as the fifth bishop of the Diocese of Saginaw on February 24, 2005 at the direction of Pope John Paul II. A native of Minneapolis, MN, he was ordained to the priesthood on May 23, 1970 for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis. He was later ordained as an auxiliary bishop for his home archdiocese on January 11, 1984 and went on to serve as Bishop of Sioux Falls, SD, from 1994 to 2005.

There will be a press conference at 10:30 this morning.

Update: From the Catholic Key Blog are remarks from Bishop Finn. “In the name of the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph I sent a message of Congratulations and prayerful best wishes to the Archbishop-Elect early this morning. He is a wonderful and holy bishop who has served the Church in so many significant ways. He is very well suited to this new assignment from the Holy Father. As I extend to him my sentiments of welcome to Missouri, I look forward to working closely with him.” You may also read Bishop Finn's column regarding the appointment in the upcoming issue of the Catholic Key newspaper.

Another Update: St. Louis Catholic blog publishes a very informational and readable letter from a priest who knows Archbishop Carlson quite well. 

Our beloved Bishop Finn speaks about the Notre Dame debacle

(Excerpt from the Catholic Key Blog). "In my first U.S. Bishops’ Conference meeting – June of 2004 – the bishops passed what seemed to me to be a compromise statement as a result of our lengthy debate on politicians and Communion. There we stated that pro-choice leaders (and specifically, Catholic leaders were mentioned) should not be given public platforms or honors. As we all know the eminent American Catholic University, Notre Dame, is poised to bestow such an opportunity and honor on President Obama, who is, of course, not Catholic. But it doesn’t take another Bishops’ Conference statement to know this is wrong: scandalous, discouraging and confusing to many Catholics.

"God knows what all motivates such a decision. I suspect that, since Notre Dame will need a scapegoat for this debacle, and Fr. Jenkins will probably lose his job, at this point perhaps he ought to determine to lose it for doing something right instead of something wrong. He ought to disinvite the President, who I believe would graciously accept the decision. Notre Dame, instead, ought to give the honorary degree to Bishop John D’Arcy of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, who has supported and tried to guide the University, despite their too frequent waywardness, faithfully for 25 years." (Photo from blog's file of Bishop Finn's Pontifical Low Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception).

Related Story:  Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando will offer a Mass of Reparation in response to the University of Notre Dame’s decision to award President Barack Obama an honorary degree. “As Catholics we are aware of the many shortcomings and transgressions committed against the dignity and sacredness of human life in our world,” according to a diocesan notice.

"That is why it is inconceivable that Notre Dame University, a Catholic institution of higher learning, should receive and honor anyone who promotes policies that are contradictory to who we are as a people of faith. As our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI stated in his visit to the U.S. last year in reference to Catholic university presidents, to justify positions that contradict the faith and teaching of the church would obstruct or even betray the university's identity and mission.” 

Our thanks to those who have visited this blog

We began this blog in late September of last year. Although it doesn't compare to some of the powerhouse Catholic blogs that really get big readership, still we have had readers review posts over 25,000 times in five and a half months. To us, that's amazing! Plus, the pace of readership is growing all the time. According to the recent level of readership, we may hit 100,000 page views by the end of our first year. Not bad for a little community of about 100 or so households.

We pray in the end that all these people reading about Old St. Patrick will help result in steady growth in attendance and membership.

Bake sale a success!

It was announced this morning that the parish bake sale was quite successful. It raised almost $1,000 for the fund to purchase new cassock and surplices for the altar servers.

This is just another demonstration of the generosity of time and treasure by Old St. Patrick people. Whether it's for this purpose,  for special requests from Bishop Finn to support diocesan projects, help for the poor and needy and other worthy causes, our parishioners know how to "dig deep". It never ceases to amaze how such a modest size community can get so much done.

Next week, Good Shepherd Sunday, the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest will be asking for special generosity for the purpose of helping the education of priests at the seminary in Italy.

The Sunday of many names...

The Sunday after Easter has many titles: Low Sunday, The Octave of Easter, Quasimodo Sunday, White Sunday and most recently it has become known as Divine Mercy Sunday.

Observing the spirit of Divine Mercy Sunday, after 8:00 a.m. Mass, Canon Avis led the Chaplet of Divine Mercy and a short Novena to the Infant King. The Gospel of today's Mass showed us how Christ, appearing twice in the Cenacle, overcame the unbelief of St. Thomas (as dramatically shown in the beautiful painting above), praising those who, not having seen, should yet believe.

Good grief!!

Over the last couple of days some comments on a couple of posts on this blog got a little out of hand. Some commentators wrote some things that probably shouldn't have been written and other commentators wrote responses that probably shouldn't have been written either. This blog was even accused of encouraging some of these comments. This was an incorrect assertion.

The com-boxes of these two posts have been closed and all the comments removed permanently.

This blog's mission is the encouragement of the growth of Old St. Patrick Oratory, and its members, its friends and also people who attend occasionally. We've learned a lesson here. We allowed comments to be posted on both sides of a contentious strand of opinion in a spirit of "freedom of speech". This, perhaps, was a mistake.

No chocolate cake in Heaven

This little sound clip from Patrick Madrid's radio show will be a nice way to start your Saturday. If you're a little grumpy, this smart little 11-year old's questions will charm you into a very good mood. Click here.

OK. OK. We know this doesn't have anything to do with Old St. Patrick

...but we really love beautiful photography. And this is a stunner! Can anyone identify this skyline...that is, the city.

Question about communion rail cloth

We had an email this morning questioning what the correct posture should be in using the new communion rail cloth. Since this is a practice that is not followed in very many Catholic churches and only recently introduced at ours, we thought that others might have this or similar questions too. So we did a little research. The following is a quote from the Catholic Encyclopedia.
"The "Rituale Romanum" (tit. iv, cap. ii, n. I) prescribes that a clean white cloth be extended before those who receive Holy Communion. This cloth is to be of fine linen, as it is solely intended as a sort of corporal to receive the particles which may by chance fall from the hands of the priest. It is usually fastened on the sanctuary side and when in use is drawn over the top of the rail. It should extend the full length of the rail, and be about two feet wide, so that the communicant, taking it in both hands, may hold it under his chin. Its very purpose suggests that it is not to be made of lace or netting, although there is nothing to forbid its having a border of fine lace or embroidery."
We hope this bit of information is helpful to anyone who might have been unsure what to do when approaching the communion rail. And we especially thank the reader who asked the question. 

Update: (04/19/2009) Although we didn't hear it, some readers have informed us that Canon Avis made it clear in pulpit announcements that hands should be placed under the linen so as to catch a dropped host if it occurred, but not as far as the chin. 

(We thank St. John Cantius church in Chicago, IL for the use of the picture of the communion rail linen).

Dr. Thomas Dillon, President of Thomas Aquinas College is dead

We were devastated to learn this afternoon that Tom Dillon was killed in an automobile accident while in Ireland this morning. His wife Terri, who was also injured, is expected to recover swiftly.

We knew Dr. Dillon personally, having spent a week-end as a guest in the Dillon's home on the campus of Thomas Aquinas College. Dr. Dillon was the spark-plug of the success of TAC. He was president of the college for nearly 20 years and directed it into one of the most formidable, TRULY CATHOLIC colleges in America. There are numerous persons, current or former members of Old St. Patrick,  the Latin Mass Community at Our Lady of Sorrows, Blessed Sacrament in Kansas City, Kansas, Good Counsel in Kansas City, MO and others, who are graduates of the school. 

His influence will be felt for many, many decades to come. God bless his soul and our prayers for him will be many. May he rest in peace.

Old St. Patrick showing excellent growth

It has been evident that attendance at Old St. Patrick has been growing steadily since the the end of October of last year.

Although we don't have access to the parish membership records, we can do a simple analysis of the donations that are received weekly to make some reasonable assumptions. We simply added the contributions of envelope and cash donations figures that are published in the weekly bulletin. During the past seven weeks of Lent, contributions in 2009 vs. contributions in 2008 for the same period was up 184.67%. By observation we see somewhat the same in the attendance.

Speculating as to the reasons for this growth, we postulate that:
1) Just being in our own church and being our own self-contained parish has been very attractive to many of the new attendees and new registrants, and

2) Canon Avis has truly been the spark-plug that our membership had needed. Since he arrived in September of last year he has shown just the right level of friendliness and personality in addition to his formidable gifts as a priest. Also he has shown great expertise in managing the community so everyone feels fully part of it.
It looks very bright for the future. As an example, here is reprint of a comment previously posted on this blog by a new member. We think that the sentiments expressed are pretty universal. 
"Since I made my move to OSP, I can not tell you how often I thank God for leading me to this community. Events such as the bake sale, and the St. Joseph table are truly moments when we know God has blessed us all. Love abounds in our little community. Deo Gratias."

After Mass Bake Sale was well received

The purpose of the Easter Morning Bake Sale was to raise some money for purchasing new cassocks and surplices in the new Institute of Christ the King style for our altar servers. Judging from the two glass containers on the bake sale tables that seemed packed with cash, the sale was effective. It was also a lot of fun.

The items on the sale tables appeared to be mostly home baked and some were especially creative including this tray of cookies which were baked in the shape of crosses and decorated with Easter-color icings of little flowers. Purchased by this member, we can attest to the taste also. They were delicious. We're eating a few and are taking the remainder to our elderly parents who are house-bound. They'll love them. Our special thanks to the person who baked these cookies. They are a very special Easter treat!!! And thanks to all of those who participated in this fund-raiser...bakers and buyers both!

Our Beautiful Altar dressed for the celebration of the Masses of the Risen Christ!

The dramatic and beautifully designed candle holder was prepared last night during the Easter Vigil as the Paschal Candle was symbolically decorated with the five blessed grains of incense in the form of a cross and then blessed to the chanting of the Exsultet. 

"Let the angelic choirs of heaven now rejoice: let the divine mysteries be celebrated with joy: and let the trumpet of salvation resound for the victory of so great a King."

The altar was stunningly embellished with Easter Flowers.

Holy Thursday at the Oratory

The pews were mostly full. And a beautiful High Mass was sung by a small but disciplined choir. The choir did a particularly fine job singing Psalm 21 during the distribution at Communion. The Holy Thursday liturgy was concluded with a solemn procession transferring the Holy Eucharist from the main altar to the altar of repose to spend the night and through today's "Mass of the Presanctified".
After the procession, the Holy Eucharist was reposed in the tabernacle at the Epistle side altar.

The ceremony of stripping the main altar and the south side altar was conducted with great dignity by the servers, and as this work was being done, the singing of Psalm 21 was repeated in a "recto tono" form. It was very moving. The altar of repose was beautifully decorated with stair-stepped candles, flowers and gold fabric filling the spaces.
The church was to be open for adoration until Midnight. Those who had to get home, found themselves running through a small downpour. 

Stations of the Cross will be today (Friday) at 12:00 Noon. And Mass of the Presanctified will be at 6:30 p.m. this evening.

Visits from around the country and around the globe

Since we started this community blog last September, we have been surprised at the depth of interest in Old St. Patrick Oratory. Of course, most of the readers are from the Greater Kansas City area, but we get many readers from all over the place. For example: the list below is of some of the readers from outside our area during the last two days.
United Kingdom Edinburgh, Edinburgh, City of
Sunnyvale, California
United Kingdom Salisbury, Wiltshire
Pittsburg, Kansas
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Chicago, Illinois
Palos Verdes Peninsula, California
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Pawtucket, Rhode Island
Rolla, Missouri
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Fredericksburg, Virginia
Winter Park, Florida
Phoenix, Arizona
Canada Toronto, Ontario
Wilmington, Delaware
Conception, Missouri
Wheeler, Wisconsin
Waterford, Pennsylvania
Apex, North Carolina
Saint Louis, Missouri
Baltimore, Maryland
Toms River, New Jersey
Denver, Colorado
Mountain View, California
Germany Traunstein, Bayern
United Kingdom Abingdon, Oxfordshire
Philippines Manila
Miami, Florida
New Orleans, Louisiana
New Haven, Missouri
San Francisco, California
Brazil Marlia, Sao Paulo
Wichita, Kansas
West Palm Beach, Florida
Clarence, New York
Fort Collins, Colorado
North Bergen, New Jersey
Brooklyn, New York
Australia Melbourne, Victoria
United Kingdom Leicester

Photos shared by Christoper Murad

Parishioner Christopher Murad is an avid photographer with a splendid sense of artistic composition. He has kindly offered his collection of photos of OSP during various activities of the parish to all members and friends of the Oratory. Click here.

In just a decade, the Benedictines of Clear Creek have made great progress at their monestery in Clear Creek, OK

Our Lady of the Annunciation of Clear Creek is a monastic foundation of the French Abbey Notre Dame de Fontgombault, itself a foundation of Saint Pierre de Solesmes.

Over the years Solesmes started new monasteries, one of which was the Abbey of Fontgombault in France. Fontgombault in turn, after having sent monks to three monasteries in France, in 1999 started one in Oklahoma on a 1,000 acre chunk of Oklahoma countryside.

On March 20, 21 & 22 several Old St. Patrick parishioners, Paul Villotti and Joe Farris visited the monestary for a private retreat. Paul had been there before on several occasions along with members of his family to help clear brush and fabricate some out-buildings for the farm. It was a very peaceful and prayerful weekend. The monastery is so remote and isolated that there is no shortage of "quiet space." Assisting the monks at Holy Mass and attending the hours of the office with them is a very moving experience. The several photos below show the progress that has been made over the years. It is considerable.

The photo above is a shot of the Crypt - the lower level of the eventual church. This is where the monks now celebrate Holy Mass and chant the the office until the church is built which will be the next phase of the construction project. The crypt has enough altars to allow perhaps twelve monks to celebrate Holy Mass at the same time which is what they do during the Low Mass that is being celebrated at the main altar. 

The second picture is a shot of the walk-way along the court yard side of the monastery building. Eventually the court yard will be fully enclosed by four buildings including the church and three wings of the monastery. Note the ceiling above the walkway is beautiful cedar wood.

The third picture is of the courtyard itself. In the center is a well which is over 300 feet deep. This well supplies the water for the monastery and the farm operation.

The last picture shows a side view of the crypt. The tall brick tower to the left is on the end of the monastery wing and houses the water tower that stores the water from the well mentioned earlier. The wing on the right side of the picture is the Gate Keepers office. This is where the monk who is designated as "Porter" receives guest and visitors. It also is the location of the book store.

The 34 monks of Clear Creek, some of whom are from nearby states, raise sheep, cattle and have a milk herd. They also have a saw mill where they cut timber and cure it in one of three drying houses from one to three years depending on the thickness of the cut.

You are encouraged to visit their website or better yet make a trip to Clear Creek monastery. Be sure to call or email ahead of time for a reservation. You can get more information from the website about visits and accommodations.

Holy Week Schedule Reminder

Special Events for Easter:

April 9th - Holy Thursday
7:00 p.m. - High Mass, Procession and
Adoration until midnight
April 10th - Good Friday
Noon - Stations of the Cross
6:30 p.m. - Liturgy of the Lord's Passion
April 11th - Holy Saturday
8:30 p.m. - Easter Vigil
April 12th - Easter Sunday
8:00 a.m. - Low Mass
10:15 a.m. - High Mass

Naughty Boys

Reader David Remley sent in this story from OSP's colorful past. We know that no Old St. Patrick young fellow would be engaged in such rough activity these days. This article from the paper - Kansas City Journal from April 5, 1909 will no doubt tickle your funny bone and possibly cause you to keep closer tabs on your kids.

Boys Who Gambled There Over Priest's Protest
Caught by Police.

Disregarding the admonitions of a priest, a crowd of boys between the ages of 12 and 18 years are congregating in the yard of St. Patrick's Catholic church, Eighth and Cherry streets, Sunday afternoons and shooting craps. Neighbors were disturbed by the riotous boys' loud talking to the dice.

While fourteen were indulging in a big game yesterday afternoon four policemen scaled the fence and suddenly dropped into the midst of the "gang." A wild scramble to escape followed by the "bluecoats" corralled all of them and the boys enjoyed a free ride to the police station where they were charged with gambling.

Parents of the youngsters began arriving a few minutes after the culprits had landed behind the bars. Each parent insisted that his boys were not "shooting craps" but the police demanded the $5 appearance bond nevertheless.

Photo: courtesy of the New York City museum (circa 1900). Not our boys, but no doubt it gives a clear concept of what the gathering might have looked like.

Recitation of the Rosary before Mass

Our great thanks to Craig Koppe who leads the Rosary before the first Sunday Mass of the day. It starts at 7:30 a.m. Our thanks also to Daniel Soukup who leads the Rosary at the 10:15 a.m. Sunday Mass.

Our First Palm Sunday at the Oratory

It was a cold, gray day in downtown Kansas City...and a light drizzle was falling, but that didn't phase the OSP faithful. They just bundled up and gave praise to the Lord in the traditional blessing of palms, distribution of palms and solemn outside processional ceremony to remember Our Lord's solemn entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. The palm branches borne by the Jews on Palm Sunday were symbols of victory - the victory that Christ was to gain over the devil by His death.
Canon Avis blessed the palms.
After distribution of the palms, all participants began the ceremonial procession out of the church which continued around the entire church property.
There was light rain and it was cold, but none were daunted.
The procession paused at the church entrance for the singing of the Gloria Laus, "Glory, praise and honor to Thee, O King Christ, the Redeemer, to who children poured their glad and sweet hosanna's song." Many parishioners were heard joining in on the repetitions of the response to the antiphon verses.
After the priest and the procession pause at the door to the church for the completion of the singing of the processional antiphons, the server knocks three times at the door of the church with the processional cross, then it is opened to show that only through trials and tribulation can we enter the gate of Heaven and be admitted to the realms of bliss.

New style cassock and surplice coming for altar servers

Servers will soon be dressing in cassock/surplice along the style that is being used in ICKSP apostolates in Europe. The server will wear the Institute blue cassock, white surplice and Institute blue capes. The bake sale next week is being dedicated to raising funds to purchase these new outfits for the boys.

A Picture is really worth a thousand words

You've no doubt been following the story of the outrageous invitation from Notre Dame (Our Lady) University to Obama to speak at Commencement. We can't add much more. But, this drawing from expresses the dishonor of this Catholic institution and its leadership in an instant.

For the cat lovers at Old St. Patrick

Don't you just love it when they climb on the sink?

Old Fashioned Bake Sale

Our thanks to a reader who informs us that some of the ladies of Old St. Patrick Oratory are planning to hold a bake sale after the Masses on Easter Sunday.
"Why? To help pay for new cassock/surplice for the servers.

"When? EASTER SUNDAY! Yes, you need to take something to someones house for Easter Dinner, you know a shut-in that misses the dinner, you have a sweet tooth yourself! In the narthex of the Church.

"Cost? Fair donation for baked goods. We also will take your monetary donation if you do not wish to purchase items. Nothing will have a set price."
So don't forget to stop by the tables on the vestibule after Mass on Easter Sunday, April 12th.

Father Frank Kriski update

Our Latin Mass chaplain at Our Lady of Sorrows for three years, Father Frank Kriski, CssR had prostate surgery yesterday. A spokesperson at his parish rectory at Our Lady of Peace tells us that he may be going home Thursday or Friday.

Please keep Father's recovery from surgery and from the effects of the cancer in your prayers. Father stands out in our memories as one of the best chaplains our little group had over the years. He is a very good man and a holy priest.

Update: (Thursday - 04/02/09) We hear through the grapevine that Father will be featured in the Catholic Key that publishes next week.

One of God's Creatures

Really ugly! Yet...truly beautiful. 
Mostly showing off for the camera, we think!
(Anyone want to contribute a caption for this pix?)