"Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune"

Claude Debussy

de Brantigny

Some things that really make me mad about TV

OK I am going to vent. Sorry. but it is therapeutic...

This is disgusting.

A new TV program is on cable called HURL. This is a contestant type program where the entrants eat as much as they can and then do thing to make them regurgitate. The last one to do so wins. What! This is called gluttony, and it is one of the 7 deadly sins. Is is just another indication of how low we have sunk in the west.

America Next Top Model (CW network) has decided to feature a transvestite model, this program is aired during prime time.

OK I'm done now and I feel better.

Mind what your kids watch on the television (I used to call it the boob tube, but it ain't funny any more).

Nope, no links take my word for it. It is scandle enough just writing it up.

God save us,
de Brantigny

Proper dispositions for Holy Communion

Father Tim in Blackfen reminds us of our obligations, and proper dispostion for Communion.

...At this time of the feast of Corpus Christi, we should remember that to receive Holy Communion, the following are required by the Church:
To be a Catholic in communion with the Church and to believe in the real presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist.

To be living in accord with the teaching of the Church and, if married, to be married according to the law of the Church.

To be in a state of grace, free from any deliberate grave sin that has not been forgiven through the sacrament of Confession.

To have fasted for at least one hour before Communion.

To have prepared prayerfully to receive Our Lord in the Holy Eucharist.

Nowadays, some Catholics only come to Mass every few weeks. In such a case, it would be necessary to go to confession and form a firm resolution to attend Mass every week before receiving Holy Communion again.

A person who is unable to receive Holy Communion may still receive many graces by participating devoutly at Mass and making a “spiritual communion” at the time that others go up to receive Holy Communion. The following is one prayer that you could use when making a spiritual communion...

Spiritual Communion
My Jesus,
I believe that You are present
in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things,
and I desire to receive You into my soul.

Since I cannot at this moment
receive You sacramentally,
come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You as if You were already there
and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You.

Thank you Father Tim at Rosary News

de Brantigny

Send 12 Swiss Guards to arrest them all!

Sometimes people demand action, like the person asking the last question in this final edition of the Q&A series with Cardinal Arinze. Enjoy!

de Brantigny

The Affair of the Necklace, revisited

Popular opinion created among the uninformed can be a terrible thing. The French people led to believe the worst about Marie-Antoinette were only too glad to read of any scandal falsely placed on her. It was not bad enough that advantage was taken of her by a prelate of the church, but that the actual thief escaped any actual punishment. How man is driven down by his base instincts. Elena-Maria has another insight to the "Affair of the Necklace" which may be found here...

That Hollywood would make a movie that makes Marie-Antoinette out to be a flagrantly extravagant and greedy Queen is another indication of how they will change history to suit their needs. I think what offends me the most is that somewhere, someone thinks that is history.

Thanks for the article Elena-Maria.

Just a note, Marie-Antoinette is rarely seen in contemporary portraits with an over abundance of jewelry, and especially not gaudy jewelry. She was refined, and subtle in her choice of adornment. La Reine-Martyr was a natural beauty, she needed no assistance by diamonds.

Dieu sauve la Reine!
de Brantigny

Sister Faustina's Confessor to Be Beatified

ROME, AUG. 20, 2008 (Zenit.org).- Sister Faustina's confessor and St. Thérèse's parents are among the six who will be beatified in the next two months. Polish Father Michal Sopocko, Sister Faustina Kowalska's confessor and spiritual director, and principal promoter of the revelations the nun received on Divine Mercy, will be beatified Sept. 28 in Poland. Father Sopocko (1888-1975) also founded the Congregation of Sisters of Merciful Jesus.

de Brantigny

New Blog

While doing research for an article on the Russian Imperial Martyrs, I came across this blog, which with the owners permission I have added to my list of blogs. I may seem incongruous that I should at this point choose to add a blog which is Russian in nature. My reasons are first, the blog has a lot of excellent information that I am looking for, second I have not yet formed an opinion about the Russian intervention in Georgia.

A word about history, sometimes it comes back to you in ways you wouldn't expect. Here is a short story from the opening days of the American Civil War, The Trent Affair. Two commissioners, were sent by the Confederate Government to treat with France and England. On the high seas they were captured and placed in Fort Monroe Virginia. The Confederate government as well as France and England, complained to the world that the commissioners were taken. in the end the commissioners were released, but not with out a final irony, in the letter to the British Government the Secretary of State added "...this error the British government has the right to expect the same reparation that we as an independent state should expect from Great Britain or from any other friendly nation on a similar case..." Thus recalling the impressment of American citizens by the British prior to the war of 1812.

In 1962 the then President John F Kennedy reminded Nickita Kruschev about the Monroe Doctrine. After a tense few days the Russian government removed missiles from Cuba. The United States rightly regarded the emplacement of missiles on our "doorstep" as a provocation to the safety of the United States.

Now what I may or may not think of Vladimir Putin does not in any way diminish my thinking that maybe the administration should have completely thought the action of close relations with Georgia through. It is the Monroe doctrine in reverse. It is not a matter of thinking "what is fair for one is fair for all". Right is right and wrong is wrong(1). If we make a decision to do things which we ourselves would not permit, we can not take the moral high ground and not have any creditability.

It is not as though this couldn't have been foreseen. We in America woke up one morning and as we shook the grogginess out of our heads, said "I thought the cold war was over". The relations between the US and Russia, the only two superpowers have deteriorated since the end of the cold war, mistakes have been on both sides, and Russia is not the only one at fault. I pray for peace, and I pray for closer ties between our two nations.

The blog, "Voices from Russia, sources from the Homeland and Diaspora", will be added to my blog roll. Welcome to the author and owner Vara Drezhlo.

de Brantigny

(1). Quote from Sgt Maj Max Swartzenbach, USMC, my former Sgt Major, who had a unique way of getting to the core of a problem.


Louis and Marie Zelie Guerin Martin

By Cindy Wooden
Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Pope Benedict XVI has approved the beatification of Louis and Marie Zelie Guerin Martin, the parents of St. Therese of Lisieux.

The couple will be beatified Oct. 19, World Mission Sunday, during a Mass in the Basilica of St. Therese in Lisieux, France, the Vatican announced Aug. 19.

St. Therese and St. Francis Xavier are the patron saints of the missions.

The Vatican did not say who would preside at the Martins' beatification Mass.

With beatification, the diocese where the candidate lived or the religious order to which the person belonged is authorized to hold public commemorations on the person's feast day. With the declaration of sainthood, public liturgical celebrations are allowed around the world.

The Martins were declared venerable, one of the first steps in the sainthood process, in 1994. But despite the active encouragement of Pope John Paul II to move the cause forward, the miracle needed for their beatification was not approved by the Vatican until early July.

Louis lived 1823-1894 and his wife lived 1831-1877. They had nine children, five of whom joined religious orders.

de Brantigny

Fête de la Saint Louis, l'Information

24 août 2008
Saint Louis

Dimanche 24 août 08 : Fête de la Saint Louis en Bretagne à Sainte Anne d'Auray. Basilique et monument du Comte de Chambord Kerléano : Mausolée Cadoudal - Champs des Martyrs - Chapelle Sainte Barbe.

Lundi 25 août : Dinan et ses environs : messe. Visite et déjeuner au Château du Guiller chez le Colonel de Longeaux.


Merci, Royaliste.org

de Brantigny


by Fr. Dick Cremins, S.J.

Fr. Stanislas de Lestapis, a French Jesuit, died in 1999 at the age of 94. He had been a member of the Papal Commission on Birth Control and was one of the signatories of its minority report. He had published a book, Birth Control, of which the third edition appeared in 1962, before Humanae Vitae (1968).

In chapter 7, “The Contraceptive Civilization”, he made the following bold prophecies:

• “We do not hesitate to say that the acceptance of contraception will produce profound changes in our civilization, these changes are already taking place in countries that have officially endorsed contraception for one or two generations.”

• “Voluntary numerous families will progressively disappear, and the large family will tend to appear as a monstrosity.”

• “Populations and families which have deliberately become less creative will experience spiritual ageing and premature sclerosis.”

• “The idea and the ideal of family happiness will be downgraded in terms of a so-called right to happiness and of what people think are the ‘techniques’ of achieving it.”

• Morality among the young will deteriorate. The unmarried will be more licentious. The sexuality of women will lose its connection with marriage.”

• “There will be a grave change in the bond of love, due to the reversal of sexual function. It will remain fixed at an ‘adolescent’ stage. Society as a whole will slip into this ‘transitory’ stage.”

• “The maternal instinct will become sterile, due to the repression of the desire for children which is innate in women. There will be a silent hostility toward life and its first manifestations: pregnancy, childbirth and even sometimes towards dolls and babies.”

• “A new concept of sex, now essentially defined as ‘the capacity for erotic play for the sake of the couple,’ all reference to procreation now being only accidental.”

• “A growing tolerance of homosexual behavior, as erotic play that succeeds in expressing personal intimacy between friends or lovers.”

• “Finally, contraception will raise hopes which it cannot fulfill, and will give rise to frustrations and deep dissatisfactions, which will contribute to:

- The crisis of divorce and instability of modern marriages.

- The deterioration of mental health, and lack of sexual desire in women.

- The abdication of parents confronted by their task as educators.

- The ennui secreted by a civilization that is entirely centered on a comfortable way of life and sexual satisfaction.”

• “We may be accused of drawing a rather somber picture. No one will reproach us for not being frank. It only remains to justify these predictions.”

Fr. Lestapis goes on for twenty pages to justify separately each of his predictions, some very clearly, others less so, given the intangible nature of his subject.

However, a simple observation of our contemporary world will tell us that many, if not all of them, have come to pass. Is this just coincidence or is it because “the acceptance of contraception” actually has “produced profound changes in our civilization”?

If that is so, we can hardly treat the assertion of Humanae Vitae that “every use of marriage should be open to the transmission of life” as an open question.

Thanks to Joseph at Good Jesuit, Bad Jesuit

de Brantigny

Thoughts from Alexandr Solzhenitsyn

I once had the pleasure of hearing Alexandr Solzhenitsyn's son Ignat perform as a conductor and pianist. It was a moment I will never forget. Today as a first article upon my return I publish a letter I received from the Reverend Joseph Johnson. His letter was a forward to me, I can not trace down the original owner of the letter, but I did find a transcript of the original address, here. He is profound and possibly his death will foster a renewed interest in his works...

August 13, 2008

The faculty of Harvard University admired Alexandr Solzhenitsyn for his literary achievements, so they were thrilled that he agreed to deliver the university’s 1978 commencement address. But almost as soon as he began to speak, the professors changed their minds: too late. As I (1) wrote this month in CHRISTIANITY TODAY, they realized that Solzhenitsyn was charging them with complicity in the West’s surrender to liberal secularism, the abandonment of its Christian heritage, and of all the moral horrors that followed.

For example, describing the Western worldview as “rationalistic humanism,” Solzhenitsyn decried the loss of “our concept of a Supreme Complete Entity which used to restrain our passions and our irresponsibility.” Man has become “the master of this world . . . who bears no evil within himself,” he announced. “So all the defects of life” are attributed to “wrong social systems.”

Solzhenitsyn argued that this moral impoverishment had led to a debased definition of freedom, which makes no distinction between “freedoms for good” or “freedoms for evil.” Our founders, he reminded us, would scarcely have countenanced “all this freedom with no purpose” but for the “satisfaction of one’s whims;” they demanded freedom be granted conditionally upon the individual’s constant exercise of his religious responsibilities.

Solzhenitsyn could hardly have imagined that, just 14 years later, the U.S. Supreme Court would enshrine this radical definition of freedom: “At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning of the universe, and of the mystery of human life.”

Solzhenitsyn also foresaw the rise of political correctness. “Fashionable trends of thoughts and ideas,” he said, “are fastidiously separated from those that are not fashionable.” He predicted this would lead to “strong mass prejudices” with people being “hemmed in by the idols of the prevailing fad.”

Could even Solzhenitsyn have imagined that sexual rights would in 30 years triumph over free expression, that academia would impose rigid speech codes, or that churches would be threatened with the loss of their tax-exempt status for opposing the homosexual agenda?

On that June day, 30 years ago, Solzhenistsyn predicted that, in time, we would become more concerned with the civil rights of terrorists than with our own national security. Could he have imagined that 30 years later to the week, the Supreme Court, in the case of BOUMEDIENE v. BUSH, would uphold the civil rights of enemy combatants held at Guantanamo Bay?

Solzhenitsyn also charged the West with losing its “civic courage . . . particularly noticeable among the ruling and intellectual elites.” After all, he said, with “unlimited freedom on the choice of pleasures,” why should one risk one’s precious life in defense of the common good?

Three decades after Solzhenitsyn’s speech, Americans find themselves in the grip of violent and pornographic “entertainment,” growing censorship of unfashionable ideas, a new wave of isolationism, and a spiritually exhausted citizenry.

The solution Solzhenitsyn offered at the Harvard commencement was for a “spiritual blaze.” The question is, have we listened? Do we see signs of awakening? And is there still time to renew ourselves out of our “spiritual exhaustion”?

de Brantigny

(1) I could not find the original article. The web site I was provided gave me an error for the URL.