Saturday, April 30, 2011

Photo of the Old Cathedral at Night

Basilica of Saint Louis, King of France (Old Cathedral) in downtown Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - tower at night

Tower of the Basilica of Saint Louis, King of France, the Old Cathedral, consecrated in 1834. This is located in downtown Saint Louis, near the Gateway Arch.

Newsletter from the Oratory


SAINT FRANCIS DE SALES ORATORY
EMAIL NEWSLETTER

2653 Ohio Avenue
Saint Louis, Missouri 63118
www.institute-christ-king.org
www.TraditionForTomorrow.com
314-771-3100
April 29, 2011


DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY - EASTER VIGIL – PALM SUNDAY GABON 
ORATORY GARDEN



MAY CROWNING ON SUNDAY OF DIVINE MERCY

The night before His death for our salvation, Our Lord Jesus Christ instituted the Sacrament of Holy Eucharist, and at that very moment also instituted the priesthood of the New Testament by which the Sacrament of His Body and Blood would be consecrated and given to men. The Sunday which closes the octave of Easter, traditionally known as Low Sunday, Quasimodo Sunday or Dominica in albis, commemorates the institution of the Sacrament of Penance, that Sacrament by which those separated from our Eucharistic Lord by sin may be brought back to the state of grace. No wonder, then, that, in these dark days of ours, Divine Providence should have chosen this Sunday as the day on which the mercy of God should receive special praise from men, a mercy which was made known in the fullness of time by the Incarnation of His Divine Son. It is the very message of mercy first received by Our Lady of the Annunciation, then by the shepherds in Bethlehem, and countless times throughout history, especially in the apparitions of the Sacred Heart to St. Margaret Mary.


Those who go to Confession (within a week’s time) and receive Holy Communion on Divine Mercy Sunday receive a plenary indulgence, the remission of all sin and punishment. It is a day on which we should implore the grace of perfect contrition for our sins and desire to be enflamed with charity toward all poor sinners, confiding them all to the infinite mercy of our Savior Jesus Christ, who reigns from the sweet wood on which He hung for our redemption.
This Sunday, May 1, we will witness again the crowning of the statue of the Blessed Virgin in our church. During the 10 AM High Mass, the crown, emblem of the reign of the Mother of God over all saints and angels in heaven, will become again the visible sign of Mary’s queenship. She who was elevated over all creatures to become the mother of our savior, is now also the Ianua Caeli, the Gate of Heaven: The Chaplet of Divine Mercy allows us to ask for God’s forgiveness through the “sorrowful passion” of Jesus (‘For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and the whole world’.), the Rosary of the Blessed Mother lets us ask for the intercession of the heavenly queen: “… pray for us now and in the hour of our death. Amen.”
In his 1954 encyclical proclaiming the Queenship of Mary, Ad caeli reginam, Pope Pius XII summed up numerous historical references to this Marian title from ancient tradition, and from the sacred liturgy, which serves as a faithful reflection of the truths taught by the Church. The Holy Father wrote:
… she is a Queen, since she bore a son who, at the very moment of His conception, because of the hypostatic union of the human nature with the Word, was also as man King and Lord of all things. So with complete justice St. John Damascene could write: "When she became Mother of the Creator, she truly became Queen of every creature.” But the Blessed Virgin Mary should be called Queen, not only because of her Divine Motherhood, but also because God has willed her to have an exceptional role in the work of our eternal salvation.
In this holy season of Easter, we especially recall that, by His words to the Apostle John from the Cross, “Behold thy Mother,” Our Saviour gave to us His mother Mary to be our own. Mary’s divine motherhood and her glorious queenship are inexorably entwined. By instituting the liturgical celebration of the Queenship of Mary, Pope Pius XII wished “to exhort Our children in Christ to a strong and tender love, as becomes children, for Our most gracious and exalted Mother.”

Throughout the ages of the Church, her children have looked upon the Blessed Mother and Queen of Heaven for help when we are in times of crisis. And in the Spring time, when we are surrounded with the fragrance and beauty of a blossoming creation, it is fitting that we look to our royal mother with love and tenderness, as we crown her Queen of Heaven, with the simple devotion of children.


BLESSING OF THE EASTER CANDLE


At the beginning of the celebrations of this year’s Easter Vigil, the Easter candle was inscribed with a cross and the Greek letters “alpha” and “omega”, as well as with the numbers of our current year. Five grains of incense were inserted into the candle's cross, symbolizing the Five Wounds of Christ. Then, after the candle is lit in the new fire, it is carried into the Church, symbolizing the risen Christ, the true source of all light and hope. It will remain in the sanctuary on the gospel side throughout the days of Easter, until Ascension Thursday.


  
PHOTOS by Mr. Abeln - Rome of the West
 
O blessed night! This is the night of which it was written, and the night shall be lightened as the day, and night shall be the light of my delights!
Thus sings the deacon as he fulfils his most solemn duty of the entire year: the chanting of the Exsultet by which the lingering clouds of Passiontide are cast away and the first light is seen from the Sun of Justice who is about to rise. On Holy Saturday in St. Louis, 2011, the rains let up outside St. Francis de Sales Oratory at the moment the procession left the sacristy to make for the entrance of the church. Of all gifts which God has given to man in the created world, none is more excellent than the gift of fire. And on this holiest of nights, fire, too, must be blessed and consecrated to Divine worship. For tonight the fire will be used to light the Paschal candle, glorious symbol of the presence of our risen Lord among us during the forty days of unbounded joy which follow the forty days of penance.


 
PALM SUNDAY GABON

The sacred liturgy is a means and a sign of the unity of the Church. This is clearly evident as we peruse the recently published photos of Palm Sunday from Africa.
The Solemn Palm Sunday liturgy at the Institute parish Notre-Dame de Lourdes in Gabon was celebrated by Monsignor Gilles Wach, Founder and Prior General of the Institute, who just visited us a month ago. Also present was Monsignor Michael Schmitz, Vicar General in the Institute. The palm procession, led by the clergy, and servers in the distinctive Institute blue cassocks, included over five hundred adults and children as it wound through the streets of Libreville.


  
(RIGHT PHOTO) His Grace, the Most Reverend Basile Mvé Engone, S.D.B., Archbishop of Libreville (center), Msgr. Wach and Msgr. Schmitz at our parish Notre-Dame de Lourdes, Libreville/Gabon
As Canon Michael Stein recently described to us, this Institute parish, founded less than four years ago in Libreville, capital city of Gabon, has quickly swelled to nearly one thousand families. Yet, in spite of the differences in distance, language and culture, the Palm Sunday liturgy in Gabon is as familiar to us as our own in St. Louis.


A LUSCIOUS COURTYARD GARDEN


Few architectural complements can add the same beauty and vitality to a gray, man-made edifice as a well-tended garden. Thanks to the design and implementation by Oratory member families, the Oratory’s little renovated garden, between rectory and convent, is growing and thriving.

With the statues of St. Joseph and the Blessed Virgin looking on, the paved brick walk guides the way around the perennials planted last summer. Against this backdrop, the delicate leaves of the newly planted trees and the nodding Lily of the Valley blossoms are flourishing in our lovely Spring weather. As this little garden continues to grow, may Our Lord bless our work in the vineyard as He has blessed our well-tended garden!

                            



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

Friday, April 29, 2011

Old Rome and the Rome of the West

IMPERIAL ROME once spread across a continent, but we must remember that it was once a village. Here is a map of central Rome:

Map of central Rome, Italy

This map shows the approximate locations of the famed Seven Hills, shown here by red markers. The area includes tourist attractions such as the Coliseum and Forum, as well as the palaces of government — from the Roman period, through the Papal States, to present-day Italy. Wars were fought over these hills, which are located within short walking distance from each other. The original Google map is here.

I  haven't been to Rome in ages, but I recall it being quite walkable. Sometimes it is hard getting a sense of distance, so I got a map of my hometown of Saint Louis, at the same scale.  It turns out that central Rome, with its seven hills, is approximately the same size as downtown Saint Louis, which also happens to be quite walkable.

Map of downtown Saint Louis, Missouri, USA

The original map is here. Native Saint Louisians ought to surprised at the small size of this part of Rome. Because of its fame, ought it be bigger? It is rather on a human scale.

For fun, I did a little exercise in comparative geography. I took these two maps, which are at the same scale, and placed the Colosseum directly upon the location of the old Busch Stadium. [The old Busch design was inspired by the Coliseum. The current Busch has a more American form and is a bit south of the original location.] Assuming this juxtaposition:
Not very far apart by my standards. These hills are of minor geographic significance, but you can hardly study Rome without knowing them, due to their great historical and cultural significance.

Of the four major basilicas, two of them are found here, and the others are not far away:
Combining these two maps together produces this headache-inducing image:

Rome and Saint Louis - superimposed

The Tiber is rather small compared to the Mississippi, and is much easier to swim across.

Rome was founded on the Palatine Hill, and Saint Louis had its origins where the Gateway Arch now stands, which is the green area labeled the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. Sadly, little remains from the founding of the City nearly 250 years ago.

The burden of history is too much for some people to bear, and so Modernists want to bulldoze history and flatten the hills for the impossible ideal of creating a new world uninfluenced by the past. Romantics on the other hand like to look at vine-covered ruins, as this helps them get into an aesthetically depressed mood. But why not incorporate the past into the present? Why destroy something only because it is out of style, and why should old monuments become sterile archaeological museums, as we see now in the Roman Forum?

Catholic culture, traditionally, has a more organic connection with the past, which we find in Rome. Layer upon layer of buildings can be found, with newer buildings incorporating scraps of older ones, and older buildings finding new uses. Even place names layer upon each other, like the Basilica of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, which as its name hints, is a Catholic church built over the ruins of a pagan temple. Buildings can even have multiple names: the presidential palace can also rightfully be called the royal palace and the Papal palace. The Pantheon is also Saint Mary of the Martyrs and Santa Maria Rotonda.

The time between Rome's founding until it became a republic is about the same amount of time since the founding of Saint Louis in 1764 to now. Saint Louis was founded as a colony of an empire even greater than Imperial Rome, and so what it lacked in sovereignty, it gained in trade. But men of business and government tend to look forward, and have little respect for the past. We have very little knowledge of the people who lived here before the French — for it was not recorded — and nearly all of the prehistoric Indian mounds in the city have been destroyed by progress.

There are at least five layers of history in old downtown Saint Louis: the native population, the French and Spanish village, the first wave of warehouses (destroyed by fire), a second wave of warehouses, and now the Gateway Arch. Modern bulldozers and digging equipment go deep to uncover virgin soil, and so relics of the past may be hard to come by, although clever searchers can sometimes find old items if they know where to look. Examining the riverfront during times of extremely low water can turn up the remains of many old sunken steamboats, as well as the mouths of springs which drain undiscovered caves beneath the city.

Rome's history is ten times that of Saint Louis, but even the history of the newer city can be quite hazy. The official history of Saint Louis very often is just the history of downtown. Relatively little is known about the history of other settlements that were absorbed by the growing municipality: this knowledge is often found in obscure archives or by local amateur historians of neighborhoods, and is often passed on through word of mouth.

In my opinion, the past is not a burden but rather is a great, unearned, Providential gift. It is a largely undiscovered storehouse of wisdom and guidance. It has been revealed to us that God even considers the fall of a sparrow, and so history — ever-present to Him — is of no insignificance.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Saint Francis de Sales Oratory, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - Easter fire

Easter fire, at Saint Francis de Sales Oratory.

Saint Francis de Sales Oratory, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - Easter fire 2

Exsultet



Exsultet iam angelica turba caelorum exsultent divina mysteria et pro tanti Regis victoria, tuba insonet salutaris.

Exult, let them exult, the hosts of heaven,
exult, let Angel ministers of God exult,
let the trumpet of salvation sound aloud our mighty King’s triumph!

Be glad, let earth be glad, as glory floods her,
ablaze with light from her eternal King,
let all corners of the earth be glad,
knowing an end to gloom and darkness.

Rejoice, let Mother Church also rejoice,
arrayed with the lighting of his glory,
let this holy building shake with joy,
filled with the mighty voices of the peoples.

It is truly right and just,
with ardent love of mind and heart,
and with devoted service of our voice,
to acclaim our God invisible, the almighty Father,
and Jesus Christ, our Lord, his Son, his Only Begotten....

And here is Victimae Paschali Laudes:

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Major Tornado Hits Saint Louis Area

Click here for article.
2700 buildings seriously damaged.
Steeple blown off Holy Spirit Catholic Church.

Holy Saturday

“I SAID: In the midst of my days I shall go to the gates of hell: I sought for the residue of my years. I said: I shall not see the Lord God in the land of the living. I shall behold man no more, nor the inhabitant of rest. My generation is at an end, and it is rolled away from me, as a shepherd's tent. My life is cut off, as by a weaver: whilst I was yet but beginning, he cut me off: from morning even to night you will make an end of me. I hoped till morning, as a lion so has he broken all my bones: from morning even to night you will make an end of me. I will cry like a young swallow, I will meditate like a dove: my eyes are weakened looking upward: Lord, I suffer violence; answer for me. What shall I say, or what shall he answer for me, whereas he himself has done it? I will recount to you all my years in the bitterness of my soul.” (Canticle of Hezekias, Isa. 38:10)

From an ancient homily for Holy Saturday:
Something strange is happening – there is a great silence on earth today, a great silence and stillness. The whole earth keeps silence because the King is asleep. The earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and he has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. God has died in the flesh and hell trembles with fear.
PICT0005
Christ's harrowing of hell; the holy icon Agios Anastasios, at Assumption Greek Orthodox Church, in Town and Country, Missouri.
He has gone to search for our first parent, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, he has gone to free from sorrow the captives Adam and Eve, he who is both God and the son of Eve. The Lord approached them bearing the cross, the weapon that had won him the victory. At the sight of him Adam, the first man he had created, struck his breast in terror and cried out to everyone: “My Lord be with you all.” Christ answered him: “and with your spirit.” He took him by the hand and raised him up, saying : “Awake, O sleeper, and rise from the dead, and Christ will give you light.”

Friday, April 22, 2011

Darkness

DARKNESS covered everything when they crucified Jesus: and at the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice: My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?

Saint Francis Xavier Roman Catholic Church, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - detail of stained glass window with the Scourging of Christ
Stained glass window of the Scourging of Christ, at Saint Francis Xavier Church in Saint Louis.

Saint Francis de Sales Oratory, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - Arma Christi
Arma Christi.  Some of the instrument's of Christ's passion. At Saint Francis de Sales Oratory.

Saint Alphonsus Ligouri ("Rock") Roman Catholic Church, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - Crucifixion
Crucifixion, at Saint Alphonsus Ligouri Church, in Saint Louis.

Saint Alphonsus Ligouri ("Rock") Roman Catholic Church, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - pieta
Christ is taken from the Cross; Mary holds her dead son. Also at Saint Alphonsus.

Good Friday

GOOD FRIDAY IS the nadir of the liturgical year, the commemoration of the agony, betrayal, and unjust execution of Christ. Mass is not held this day.

IMG_0129-r

After Tenebrae liturgy last night, the Cathedral Basilica was plunged into darkness. The single Paschal candle did not provide much light in the sanctuary.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Newsletter from the Oratory

From Saint Francis de Sales Oratory in Saint Louis, dated April 15th. I am a bit late in posting this:



SAINT FRANCIS DE SALES ORATORY
EMAIL NEWSLETTER

2653 Ohio Avenue
Saint Louis, Missouri 63118
www.institute-christ-king.org
www.TraditionForTomorrow.com
314-771-3100
April 15, 2010

MONSIGNOR CALKINS – SACRED MUSIC – BLUE CASSOCKS
CHOIR CAMP – HOLY WEEK 



Dear Faithful, and Friends of Saint Francis de Sales Oratory,
PRESENTATION BY MONSIGNOR ARTHUR B. CALKINS




Last Saturday, the Oratory heartily welcomed Monsignor Arthur B. Calkins, who gave an excellent introductory presentation on “Marian Coredemption and Mediation.” Clearly and methodically, Monsignor elucidated on some key points from various papal teachings from the last 150 years. From the 1854 papal bull of Pius IX, 'Ineffabilis Deus,' to the writings of the Venerable Pope John Paul II, the role of our Blessed Mother in the work of our salvation was brought into focus in Msgr. Calkins’ systematic treatment of this topic. For the past 15 years, Msgr. Calkins, a renowned scholar on Marian theology, has worked on this area of Our Lady’s mediatory role. We are very grateful that he came to share it with us.

For those who were unable to attend the presentation, as well as for those who would like to hear it again, an audio recording of last Saturday’s presentation is available on our web site. Please note that loading the talk may take a few minutes, depending on the speed of your Internet connection.
 
THE SACRED MUSIC OF HOLY WEEK AND EASTER

                     

For centuries the sacred texts of Holy Week and Easter have inspired composers to pen some of the most poignant and beautiful pieces in the entire choral repertoire. It is sometimes forgotten that these inspired words were first set to music at the dawn of the age of grace, with melodies so ancient and shrouded in mystery that they are often said to have been received from the angels themselves. We are speaking of the sacred chant of the Church, called plain chant or Gregorian chant after the pontiff who codified it in the liturgy
 
Crowning the great body of plain chant are the melodies of the sacred Triduum. The whole breadth of human emotion, substantially united to the divinity in the Sacred Heart of our Savior, is relentlessly examined throughout the Triduum, from the triumphant hymn “Vexilla Regis” to the prophetic lamentations of the Improperia to the divine warmth of the Christus factus est.

Right up to the most recent declarations of the Magisterium, the Church has vigorously reaffirmed the primacy of Gregorian chant in the worship which she offers to her Divine Spouse. “The Church acknowledges Gregorian chant as specially suited to the Roman liturgy: therefore, other things being equal, it should be given pride of place in liturgical services.” - N. 116, Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy Sacrosanctum Concilium of the II. Vatican Council.

Nevertheless, she has always encouraged and generously fostered other musical forms of later periods which, far from being in conflict with the sacred melodies, serve rather as a fitting framework for them.

A famous example of this legitimate musical development is the work of Gregorio Allegri (1582-1652) who composed his famous Miserere under the reign of Urban VIII in the 1630’s. Here sacred polyphony (music for several pitches of voices) finds its place as the handmaid of plain chant. The piece is sung antiphonally between choir and soloists, with an effect that nurtures devotion rather than distraction.

An another memorable example of the glory given to God by sacred polyphony is our Easter Mass for this year: the Missa Bel’ Amfitrit’ Altera by Orlande de Lassus, scored for two choirs and brass ensemble.

At this time of year, all creation seems to join in this joyful Mass in singing the triumph of our risen Lord.

We are especially grateful to Mr. Nick Botkins, Director of Sacred Music and Master of the choirs, and all members of the Schola and Polyphonic Choirs at St. Francis de Sales Oratory.
The Institute of Christ the King offers extensive materials of carefully prepared Gregorian Chant resources for most Sundays and feast throughout the liturgical year on our US web site.
____________________________________


The complete program of sacred music during Holy Week at the Oratory is listed below:

Holy Thursday 
Mass in A Minor Cannicciari
Christus Factus Est Asola

Good Friday Popule Meus Victoria/ Gregorian Chant
Crux Fidelis Bartolucci/Gregorian Chant
Miserere Allegri
Caligaverunt Victoria
Crucifixus a 8 Lotti

Holy Saturday 
Mass I
Sicut Cervus Palestrina
Dum Transisset Taverner

Easter Sunday Missa “Bel Amfitrit” Lassus
Dum Transisset Taverner




BLUE CASSOCKS

2011


1917

The visit of our Prior General of the Institute, Msgr. Gilles Wach, and the presence of all confreres working in the American Province was a fitting occasion to inaugurate the special attire adopted by servers in the Institute’s apostolates around the world: the blue cassock and shoulder cape, together with the cross bearing the crest of the Institute. The blue color manifests the consecration of the Institute to Mary Immaculate. Such attire, which has been inspired by the choir habit of the members of the Institute, is very similar to the server attire traditionally worn by altar boys in many places, including St. Francis de Sales Oratory (see pictures of altar boys at St. Francis de Sales in 2011 and 1917 above). The Institute is happy to restore this long-established custom which contributes to its worldwide family spirit.

             


SECOND CHILDREN’S CHOIR CAMP
AUGUST 7 – 12, 2011
The Institute will offer its second Children’s Choir Camp this summer. The Camp has been scheduled for August 7 to August 12, 2011 in Maple Mount, Kentucky at Mount Saint Joseph Center of the Ursuline Sisters.
This year Canon Aaron Huberfeld will celebrate daily Mass at 10:00 AM for the children and participate in the teaching of Gregorian Chant and Choir practice.
Please contact us at 314-771-3100 or send an email to sfds@institute-christ-king.org if you are interested in registering your child.



HOLY WEEK 2011

PALM SUNDAY, APRIL 17

8:00am Low Mass; 9:30am
Blessing of Palms & Procession followed by Solemn High Mass

MONDAY, TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY
Masses and Confessions as usual

HOLY THURSDAY, APRIL 21

5:30pm Confessions
6:30pm Solemn High Mass
Procession to the Repository,
Adoration until Midnight.

GOOD FRIDAY, APRIL 22

8:00am Stations of the Cross
Confessions;
3:00pm Liturgy of the
Passion & Death of Our Lord,
(Confessions from 2:00pm until 6:30pm)

HOLY SATURDAY, APRIL 23

8:00pm Confessions; 9:00pm Easter Vigil and Solemn High Mass,
followed by Blessing of Easter Food (Bread, Eggs…)

EASTER SUNDAY, APRIL 24 
8:00am Low Mass
10:00am Solemn High Mass
(no public Vespers this evening)


With assurance of my prayers during this holiest time of the year,

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

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Shrouded Statues

Saint Francis de Sales Oratory, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - shrouded images with worshipper

At the end of Lent, the fast even extends to our senses. Shrouded statues at Saint Francis de Sales Oratory, in Saint Louis.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Palm Sunday at the Oratory

PALM SUNDAY procession, symbolizing Christ's entrance into Jerusalem, is seen here halted at the door of Saint Francis de Sales Oratory.

Saint Francis de Sales Oratory, in Saint Louis, Missouri, USA - Palm Sunday procession, halted at door of church

Shown here are the new blue server's cassocks. The color is in honor of the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest's consecration to Mary Immaculate.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Photos of Saint Nicholas Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois

HERE ARE PHOTOS of Saint Nicholas Church, in the village of Pocahontas, Illinois. The church is located about 42 highway miles east-by-northeast of downtown Saint Louis in Bond County, and is a part of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - exterior

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - statue of Saint Nicholas

Statue of Saint Nicholas of Myra (270–6 December 343), in the narthex. The Saint is identified iconographically by his episcopal vestments, and he is holding three balls or bags on a book; this symbolizes the three bags of gold that Nicholas used to prevent three girls from being sold into prostitution.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - nave

This church has approximately 183 parishioners in 91 families. I arrived at this church during the Agnus Dei, and it looked nearly filled. [I belatedly realize that my photos are mainly architectural, and that I ought to include photos of the faithful.]

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - altar

Before the altar is a crown of thorns.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - stained glass window of baptismal shell

The windows in this church are simple, but each incorporates a symbol. Here is a seashell, both a symbol of baptism, and an instrument used during the sacrament.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - stained glass window with butterfly and phoenix

On the left is a butterfly, which is a symbol of the soul and of the resurrection. On the right is the phoenix, which is also a symbol of resurrection, and most specifically a symbol of Christ's resurrection.

Until recently, there seemed to be little hope in reviving the Church's rich treasury of symbolism. However, popular youth culture has lately revived this symbolism for us. See the article Can Man Read the Symbolic Book of Nature Today?

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - XIIIth Station of the Cross, Jesus is taken from the Cross

XIIIth Station of the Cross, Jesus is taken from the Cross.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - tabernacle

The tabernacle.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - cornerstone

The cornerstone of the church.

Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church, in Pocahontas, Illinois, USA - cemetery

Address:
401 East State Street
Pocahontas, Illinois 62275

150 Bloggers Go to Rome - and then some

THE PONTIFICAL COUNCIL for Social Communications has today announced a list of 150 Catholic bloggers who are invited to go to Rome for a meeting on May 2nd. The list is here. Some of these folks had no idea that they would be invited, and are now scrambling to get a passport and raise funds for the trip. This meeting is not likely to involve beer drinking, but another blogger conference, to be held in Rome the next day, most certainly will.

I'm not sure the Vatican knows what it is getting into with this. There are some rowdy and fun-loving folks on that list.

Two Photos of Saint Vincent's Church, in Dutzow, Missouri

Saint Vincent de Paul Roman Catholic Church, in Dutzow, Missouri, USA - exterior with cemetery

Saint Vincent de Paul Roman Catholic Church, in Dutzow, Missouri, USA - cemetery at sunset

Saint Vincent de Paul Church is located on a high bluff overlooking the floodplains of the Missouri River, in the small town of Dutzow.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Spring Wildflowers

SPRING WILDFLOWERS, found at Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois. Photos taken last Saturday.

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Claytonia virginica (white Spring Beauty) wildflower

Spring Beauty, Claytonia virginica

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Dutchman's Breeches wildflower

Dutchman's Breeches, Dicentra cucullaria

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Erythronium albidum (White Trout Lily) wildflower 2

White Trout Lily, Erythronium albidum

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Erythronium albidum (White Trout Lily) leaf

Many White Trout Lilies do not bloom, but just send up a single leaf.

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Viola pubescens (Common Yellow Violet) wildflower

Common Yellow Violet, Viola pubescens

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Trillium sessile (Wake Robin) wildflower

Wake Robin, Trillium sessile

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Viola sororia (Common Blue Violet) wildflower

Common Blue Violet, Viola sororia

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - pink Claytonia virginica (Spring Beauty) wildflower

Pink variety of Spring Beauty.  All the flowers show above are native to eastern North America.

Here are some more photos taken at Silver Lake:

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - Hawthorn

This being Passion Week, here I show the thorns of the Hawthorn tree (Crataegus punctata). Sharp and painful.

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - mushrooms

Some mushrooms. I met some people looking for Morel mushrooms, which are currently in season.

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - large bud

I don't remember what this is.

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - crawfish

This is a crawfish, a small freshwater variant of lobster. It is a delicacy, used in many recipes handed down from the early French settlers.

Silver Lake Park, in Highland, Illinois, USA - white Spring Beauty wildflower

Another Spring Beauty.