Saturday, November 26, 2011

Photos of Saint Mary's Church, in Glasgow, Missouri

HERE ARE PHOTOS of Saint Mary's Church, located in Glasgow, Missouri. Built on the highest hill in that Missouri River town, this church is a part of the Diocese of Jefferson City, and is located about 164 road miles west-by-northwest of downtown Saint Louis.

Saint Mary Roman Catholic Church, in Glasgow, Missouri, USA - exterior at night

The town is named after one of the original settlers, James Glasgow. According to a history:
When Glasgow was established in 1836, there probably were no Catholics here. Beginning about 1860, German and Irish immigrants began to settle in and around Glasgow, lured by reports of the prosperity of the area and the similarity of the terrain to that of their homeland. With them they brought Catholicism. Irish settlers tended to live in town, engaging in various businesses; Germans took up agriculture. The wheat they produced bolstered the economy of the area. In 1866 a permanent parish was founded in Glasgow. Father Henry Meurs was named first pastor. The first church was completed in 1869. By 1909 about 300 of Glasgow's 1800 inhabitants were Catholic. The first church building badly needed repair. The people decided to build a new church rather than renovate the old one. On May 30, 1912, Monsignor O.J.S. Hoog laid the cornerstone. By July of that year newspapers reported railroad cars with brick, stone, sand and lime needed for construction were arriving daily. Some stained glass windows were imported from Germany.

On May 11, 1913, 700 people arrended the dedication of St. Mary's. The American Gothic edifice had cost almost $49,000, a sum equal to one-third of the total capital of the Gaslow Savings Bank at the time. The church measures 96 feet from vestibule to sanctuary. The vaulted ceiling made it possible to construct a nave unobstructed by pillars or other supports. Religious paintings, statues and a rainbow of colors streaming through the windows remind worshippers of religion's ultimate goal. The golden cross on the steeple can be seen for miles.
When the parish was erected it was part of the Archdiocese of Saint Louis. Msgr. Hoog was a missionary priest in central Missouri, and Vicar General of the Archdiocese.

The parish's elementary school was founded in 1869 and has about 114 students.

The town of Glasgow is scenic, and has a pleasant downtown area good for tourists.

Saint Mary Roman Catholic Church, in Glasgow, Missouri, USA - interior by candlelight

I arrived just after sunset — which occurs quite early this time of year — and the interior was mainly lit by candlelight.

421 Third Street
Glasgow, Missouri 65254

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Orange Sky

A LIGHT MIST hung low in the sky yesterday evening; this made for interesting photography. Here are some photos taken in Forest Park, in Saint Louis, Missouri; orange street lighting gave these scenes an unusual color.

Forest Park, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - suspension bridge at night in fog

Forest Park, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - river at night in fog

Forest Park, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - waterfall at night in fog

Forest Park, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - river at night in fog 2

This stream reconstructs the middle section of the River des Peres, which used to flow through (and now flows under) Forest Park.

Exposure time for these images ranged from two to four minutes, causing the flowing water to become a blur.

Saint Joseph Church, in Clayton, Missouri

Saint Joseph Roman Catholic Church, in Clayton, Missouri, USA - exterior view at night

Located on the highest hill of Clayton, Missouri, this church offers a daily confession and a noontime Mass. Photo taken yesterday evening.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Saint Albert the Great

TODAY IS THE feast of Saint Albert the Great, priest of the Order of Preachers, Bishop of Regensburg, the “Universal Doctor”; known for his great breadth of knowledge of the natural sciences, philosophy, and theology. Saint Albert influenced the development of Gothic architecture, was the master of Saint Thomas Aquinas, and laid the foundation for the scientific method. But he is called Saint Albert because of his faith and virtue, his holiness of life which won for him the eternal crown of glory in Heaven: for although wisdom is of incalculable value, it is of little value compared to being united with God.

From Saint Albert’s book On Union with God:
Whosoever thou art who longest to enter upon this happy state or seekest to direct thither thy steps, thus it behoveth thee to act.

First, close, as it were, thine eyes, and bar the doors of thy senses. Suffer not anything to entangle thy soul, nor permit any care or trouble to penetrate within it.

Shake off all earthly things, counting them useless, noxious, and hurtful to thee.

When thou hast done this, enter wholly within thyself, and fix thy gaze upon thy wounded Jesus, and upon Him alone. Strive with all thy powers, unwearyingly, to reach God through Himself, that is, through God made Man, that thou mayest attain to the knowledge of His Divinity through the wounds of His Sacred Humanity.

In all simplicity and confidence abandon thyself and whatever concerns thee without reserve to God's unfailing Providence, according to the teaching of St. Peter: “Casting all your care upon Him,” Who can do all things. And again it is written: “Be nothing solicitous”; “Cast thy care upon the Lord and He shall sustain thee”; “It is good for me to adhere to my God”; “I set the Lord always in my sight”; “I found Him Whom my soul loveth”; and “Now all good things came to me” together with Him. This is the hidden and heavenly treasure, the precious pearl, which is to be preferred before all. This it is that we must seek with humble confidence and untiring effort, yet in silence and peace.

It must be sought with a brave heart, even though its price be the loss of bodily comfort, of esteem, and of honour.

Lacking this, what doth it profit a religious if he “gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his own soul?” Of what value are the religious state, the holiness of our profession, the shaven head, the outward signs of a life of abnegation, if we lack the spirit of humility and truth, in which Christ dwells by faith and love? St. Luke says: “The kingdom of God,” that is, Christ, “is within you,”

In proportion as the mind is absorbed in the thought and care of the things of this world do we lose the fervour of our devotion, and drift away from the things of Heaven.

The greater, on the other hand, our diligence in withdrawing our powers from the memory, love and thought of that which is inferior in order to fix them upon that which is above, the more perfect will be our prayer, the purer our contemplation. The soul cannot give itself perfectly at the same time to two objects as contrary one to another as light to darkness; for he who lives united to God dwells in the light, he who clings to this world lives in darkness.

The highest perfection, therefore, of man in this life lies in this: that he is so united to God that his soul with all its powers and faculties becomes recollected in Him and is one spirit with Him. Then it remembers naught save God, nor does it relish or understand anything but Him. Then all its affections, united in the delights of love, repose sweetly in the enjoyment of their Creator.

The image of God which is imprinted upon the soul is found in the three powers of the reason, memory, and will. But since these do not perfectly bear the Divine likeness, they have not the same resemblance to God as in the first days of man's creation.

God is the “form” of the soul upon which He must impress His own image, as the seal on the wax or the stamp on the object it marks.

This can only be fully accomplished when the reason is wholly illuminated according to its capacity, by the knowledge of God, the Sovereign Truth; the will entirely devoted to the love of the Supreme Good; the memory absorbed in the contemplation and enjoyment of eternal felicity, and in the sweet repose of so great a happiness.

As the perfect possession of this state constitutes the glory of the Blessed in Heaven, it is clear that in its commencement consists the perfection of this life.
 Scientific knowledge is not the same thing as wisdom.  Scientific endeavors, for which Saint Albert is justly famous, have no value if they aren’t based ultimately in charity: the love for God and the love for our fellow men. This lack of true charity is common in our skeptical, egotistical age, which so often uses the fruits of the scientific method with evil intent.

I wrote earlier about Saint Albert and science here.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Busy. Can’t talk.

I HAVEN’T POSTED here much lately, because I’ve been working on some new picture books for Reedy Press.

Clifton Heights Park

The new books ought to be published next year.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

The Poor Souls

Calvary Cemetery, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - statue face detail - monument of Maysie Walker Pittman - right side of face

A detail of a statue, from the grave of Maysie Walker Pittman, at Calvary Cemetery in Saint Louis. Photo taken on this All Souls Day, November 2nd. More than a century old, the statue has some residual coal dust on it from the early 20th century as well as weathering. It is a touching memorial of a woman who died young.

Calvary Cemetery, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - statue face detail - monument of Maysie Walker Pittman - front view of face

She was born on August 10th, 1867 in Saint Louis County, with the given name Rose Marion Walker, and died on March 28th, 1896, at the age of 28. Her husband, Asa Pittman, died in 1899 at the age of 33. Her monument has Our Lord’s beatitude “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God,” which is from the Gospel reading for All Saints Day, November 1st, (Matt. 5:8).

A fine statue, but no one living knew this young woman. She has a fine monument, but very many of the departed do not; some cemeteries hereabout are even unmarked: we may pass by the remains of the departed in ignorance. As November is the month of the poor souls, we are reminded that we need to pray for them, and so instead, we can offer up a prayer for her, and for others known and unknown to us. As Saint Paul tells us, we are to “pray without ceasing” and so it is hardly an inconvenience.

From a homily of Saint John Chrysostom (ca. 347-407):
“But I know not whither he has gone,” say you. Wherefore do you not know, tell me? For according as he lived well or otherwise, it is evident whither he will go. “Nay, on this very account I lament,” say you, “because he departed being a sinner.” This is a mere pretext and excuse. For if this were the reason of your mourning for the departed, you ought to have formed and corrected him, when he was alive. The fact is thou dost every where look to what concerns yourself, not him.

But grant that he departed with sin upon him, even on this account one ought to rejoice, that he was stopped short in his sins and added not to his iniquity; and help him as far as possible, not by tears, but by prayers and supplications and alms and offerings. For not unmeaningly have these things been devised, nor do we in vain make mention of the departed in the course of the divine mysteries, and approach God in their behalf, beseeching the Lamb Who is before us, Who takes away the sin of the world—not in vain, but that some refreshment may thereby ensue to them. Not in vain does he that stands by the altar cry out when the tremendous mysteries are celebrated, “For all that have fallen asleep in Christ, and for those who perform commemorations in their behalf.” For if there were no commemorations for them, these things would not have been spoken: since our service is not a mere stage show, God forbid! Yea, it is by the ordinance of the Spirit that these things are done.

Let us then give them aid and perform commemoration for them. For if the children of Job were purged by the sacrifice of their father, why do you doubt that when we too offer for the departed, some consolation arises to them? Since God is wont to grant the petitions of those who ask for others.
Homily 41 on 1 Corinthians

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Newsletter from the Oratory



2653 Ohio Avenue
Saint Louis, Missouri 63118
November 03, 2011



Second to Christ the King, our Sovereign High Priest, the attention of the entire Oratory was turned to the Seminary of the Institute this past Sunday. What love could be spared from Our Lord was focused on the young men who are answering the call of our Master, the King of kings, the Prince of peace, and the Lamb of God.

Holy Mass was celebrated with great solemnity, with the children’s choir, the men’s and the ladies’ schola singing pieces from Louis Vierne and Lassus, and a wonderful cadre of servers in Institute blue. Not only did we pay homage to Our Blessed Lord on this regal feast day, we also celebrated the patronal feast of our beloved Institute. Grace radiated from the Altar, engulfed us, and motivated our hearts.

Following both Masses, over 350 of the faithful met in the Oratory hall for our Second Annual Seminary Society Breakfast. The breakfast has helped raise awareness of the Institute’s St. Phillip Neri International Seminary and also assists in providing material support. True to the best Midwestern hospitality, a warm, hearty breakfast was provided at a very family-friendly price to the gathering of Oratory families and friends. It was edifying for all, particularly our youths and children, to be able to hear the Rector describe the Seminary and its thoroughly human formation, to watch a video of Canon Huberfeld, and to see many images of Seminary life in a slide show which played throughout the breakfast. Many faithful took the opportunity to sign up to pray for a seminarian in this coming year. In addition, the Rector’s Raffle, the 50/50-Raffle, and door prizes for ticket holders all contributed to the great success of this event. One of the candidates in St. Louis donated a beautiful oil painting of Gricigliano, and Mark Abeln’s altar photo, available for only $100.00 as a half-size copy, found much interest.

For this superb breakfast event, we are deeply grateful to the organizers, particularly Mrs. Mary Hayworth, and to Two Mikes Catering who provided the breakfast at cost so that more funds could be donated to support the Seminary. In all, the Seminary Society Breakfasted netted well over $3,000 for the benefit of the Seminary! Together with the second collection for the Seminary and funds that were collected by the Seminary Society earlier this year, we will be able to send $9,556.78 to the Seminary in Gricigliano. Thank you very much for your outstanding generosity!


In the name of the superiors of the Institute, and all the canons, oblates, seminarians and sisters, we wish to thank you very much for your prayers and for your material support of the Seminary. The seminarians of the Institute remember all of you, their benefactors, in their daily prayers; your generosity and friendship are the means with which Our Sovereign Priest and King provides us with His future priests. Thank you very much!

We are pleased to announce that the renovation of the restrooms in the Oratory hall are completed! For logistical reasons and for the comfort of our Oratory families in the cold winter months, it was decide to renovate the women’s restroom although we had not yet collected enough funds. Thanks to all of you, the funds are slowly growing. We are now 17,635.00 short of our collection goal. Your help is deeply appreciated!



In the spirit of Gaudete Sunday – “Rejoice in the Lord Always” – an evening of excellent food, drink, and music awaits us on Saturday, December 17th, 2011 at 6:30pm. On this date, we and the Oratory Choirs and Orchestra cordially invite you to the first annual Gaudete Benefit Gala, showcasing our music program. Music is an important part of the liturgy and an important way that the faithful of the Church participate in her liturgy. It is also a beautiful way in which we can share the majestic traditions of the Church with everyone, particularly during Advent.

The Gaudete Benefit Gala will feature the music talents of the Oratory: the Polyphonic Choir, Ladies’ Schola, Gentlemen’s Schola, Girls’ Choir, & Boys’ Choir, and the Saint Francis de Sales Oratory Orchestra. What will we hear at the Benefit? “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, “Coventry Carol” by Philip Stopford, “Brandenburg Concerto no.3” by Johann Sebastian Bach, and “Pueri Concinite” by Johann von Herbeck are just a few!

The tickets for this Benefit will go on sale next week, on November 10, and will range in price between $35 and $50 (Rector’s and Conductor’s Tables). Please mark your calendars, and plan to invite all your family and friends to share in this living tradition and priceless treasure of the Church!

The mission of Blest Art, Inc., based in Beloit, WI, is to support Catholic Christians in the Holy Land by selling art work they produce. The hand-carved olive wood pieces, from simple ornaments to elaborate crucifixes and Nativity scenes, will be exhibited and offered for sale today after both Masses in the hall. Please see the posters in our vestibules.

“Only with your help can we provide some stability and keep a continued Catholic Christian presence in the Holy Land. We cannot let them destroy the testimony that our Lord lived. We would like to invite every one of you to come and take a look at our beautiful artwork. If you like anything, please consider purchasing it because the people who chose to stay in the Holy Land to protect our holy sites deserve your help and support.”


It is hardly possible to pay too much attention to the Immaculate Conception. Our Lady under this title is the patroness of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest, and also the primary patroness of our country, the United States of America. In preparation for this important feast, we have invited many guest homilists to share their meditations with us. The following is the schedule for the Novena:

Wednesday, November 30, 6:30PM:
 Father Bede Price, OSB, Rector of the Oratory of SS Gregory and Augustine, St. Louis: “Mary – Queen of the Apostles”

Thursday, December 1, 6:30PM: Father Eric J. Kunz, Associate Pastor at Queen of All Saints, St. Louis: “Mary, Mother of Divine Hope”

Friday, December 2, 6:30PM: Father Gregory J. Lockwood, Administrative Director - Vocation Office, Diocese of Kansas-St. Joseph: “Woman, Behold your Son: Mary, the new Eve”

Saturday, December 3, 8:00AM: Canon William Avis, Rector Old St. Patrick’s Oratory, Kansas, Missouri: “Mary, One of Heart with Our Lord”

Sunday, December 4, 10:00AM: Father John Horn, S.J., Rector at Kenrick-Glennon Seminary: “Advent, Waiting and the Coming Glory of the Lord”

Monday, December 5, 6:30PM: Father Thomas Keller, Pastor of St. Angela Merici, St. Louis: “Mary, Throne of Eternal Wisdom”

Tuesday, December 6, 6:30PM: Bishop Edward M. Rice, Auxiliary Bishop, St. Louis: “The Purity of Mary”

Wednesday, December 7, 6:30PM: Father Brian Harrison, O.S.: “The Immaculate Conception in American History”

Thursday, December 8, 6:30PM: Monsignor Arthur Calkins: “Mary’s Presence in the Mystery of Christ ‘before the creation of the world’”.


Reminder: On Friday, November 4th, we will celebrate the votive Mass of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, at 6:30 PM.

The Oratory Choir of Men and Boys will assist again at the First Friday Solemn High Mass from the Sanctuary Choir Stalls. This Friday the choir will sing movements of Sir Richard Terry's Short Mass in C Major. Sir R. Terry was the founding director of the Westminster Cathedral Choir, London. Both the Boys' Choir and Girls' Choir took a special trip to the Cathedral Basilica on October 19th to hear the Westminster Cathedral Choir sing a concert of Sacred Choral Music.

Beautiful and interesting images abound in the Oratory to invite us to contemplate the mysteries of our Faith. If you’ve been to the Oratory, most likely you have seen this fellow. Or have you? To see the latest mystery photo, check our restoration website’s latest blog entry. You may take our Virtual Tour if you wish.

With the assurance of my prayers and deeply grateful for all your generosity,

Canon Michael K. Wiener
Rector, St. Francis de Sales Oratory

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

All Souls Day

Saint Peter and Paul Catholic Cemetery, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - moon

Requiem æternam dona eis Domine; et lux perpetua luceat eis.
Requiescant in pace.