Friday, October 29, 2010

My Jesus crucified,

One particular devotion that I've been trying to cultivate is a devotion to our lord in his passion.I think that it's indispensable for any christian to have a devotion to Christ crucified, especially a (God willing) soon-to-be religious. Christ crucified is the image of the Christian life, especially of the religious life. Death to self, self-sacrifice for the benefit of others,self-emptying, and patience, these are the virtues which are our standard. And so it is that it is true what he says, that he is set before us to be a sign of contradiction. Christ crucified is our standard of holiness, and it is before this standard that we can all see the great failures of our own attempts at sanctity. Christ is the sign, and we are the contradiction to it.

So it is that, as St. Alphonsus says, that we must know our lord in his passion. Not only as one who does so out of thanksgiving and gratitude, though we must do this (Hence, the mass, the memorial sacrifice of Christ's death) but also out of a real desire to be conformed to the same image. I think it's true that if we could learn the science of the Crucified, we would find the Christian life therein. Becuas the Passion of Christ is humility, self-abandonment,resignation, and obedience.

It's not an easy devotion to learn though. I know, because I tried it starting lent. It's so easy to let the outward practices become the devotion, rather than them being only and outward sign of an inner devotion.It's so easy for it to become simply reading some chapters from a book, saying some prayers and kissing the crucifix now and then, without remembering that the heart of the devotion is contemplation of the mysteries of Christ's passion and death.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


You know, it's amazing what people put on deviantART. It seems like the majority of the stuff has to do with 'pairings' (And those who are into anime/manga know Exactly what I'm talking about there) It's kinda sad, a bit disgusting, but it's probably representative of deviant art.It seems that the way to become popular there is to sell your characters, and we all know what sells. Those who don't give in to the principle are forced to live a life of mediocrity. I am consigned to this fate.

I was browsing the galleries of the people whose works I've favourited, and a lot of the stuff has inappropriate themes.Nothing graphic or explicit of course, because deviantART is strict and would'nt allow such things.But they are things that sit on the line of what's PG13 and what is'nt. I never really bothered to look in people galleries before,but now that I have, I'm a bit disappointed. I used to recommend my friends to visit these people's profiles for good art, and now I see what I sent them to.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Brought to a Happy End.

Mt.Calvary Joins the Ordinariate.

I'm a bit jealous. It's blindingly obvious that no parish here in Philly would ever dream of joining the ordinariate, save the now defunct St.James the less. (With whom my sympathy has always been.) My dreams of being able to go back to the worship I'm most comfortable with will just have to be unfulfilled for now.

Mary, Our holy foundress.

I have nothing against carmelites, but I think the promises that come with our scapular are a lot more clearer, and thus in my opinion, better.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

And now,

A musical interlude.


And on a more cheerful note,


Faith, Hope, and Charity.

I've been slowly reading the classic spiritual book This Tremendous Lover.
-Yeah I know, interesting title.

But it's wonderful.I haven't gotten very far, because honestly, I don't seem to have as much time for spiritual reading and reflection as I used to. But I'm slowly getting through it. Besides helping to show me how little I've gone down the path to spiritual perfection and showing me how terrible a sinner I am, the book has given me a lot of help that would do me some good if I could just put it into practice.

One thing that I've been trying is to simply, all day, try to keep in my mind those three words: Faith, Hope, and Charity. The three theological virtues. I'm hoping that if I do this, I can change my conduct between God and myself, and between myself and others more quickly. I'm hoping that I can use them to give myself an instant, unthinking evaluation of all my words, actions, and thoughts before I say,do, or think them. I need to know how such or such an action will show or fail to show faith and hope in God, and charity toward God and neighbor. It's a little practice, but I'll see how it goes.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Tomorrow night,

I start my annual novena for the holy souls, this year with a particular focus on my dad's soul. I'll try to post the novena meditations and prayers daily. And also, there will be a mass celebrated for the repose of my father's soul on October 31 at 7:30 AM. I would greatly appreciate it if anyone would'nt mind praying or joining themselves spiritually to the sacrifice of the mass on that day.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Mom apparently got rid of Ginger, my cat, while I've been away. She says that there's always the two kittens, so I really don't have anything to get worked up over. But she's never been a pet person, so I wouldn't expect here to understand. I got Ginger when I was 12,and she was a young cat back then (Only two) She started showing signs of age this year, so I expected that she would get to live out last four or five years in the comfort of a familiar house and familiar people.

Now she's been shipped off to the SPCA where who knows what'll happen to her.

Yes, animals don't have immortal souls and all that, but you do get attached to pets. Especially when you've had them for years, and they've grown on you.



You know, sometimes I wonder if there's any real point in trying to be a tolerant conservative. Liberal Catholics will hate you for subscribing to everything in the catechism, the councils,and the fathers, and Conservatives will hate you for trying to present this acceptance of tradition in a tolerant, non-inflammatory, conciliatory manner.

But it really is true that you convince people more easily with sweetness and being an example than all the logical,philosophical and scriptural arguments in the world ever could.

Maybe some day I'll actually learn this and not just know it.

[If you can't tell, I've not had a good day today.]

I need glasses.

Just in case anyone had got the idea that I'm a mature and responsible guy, my glasses, which I do occasionally need (I'm near-sighted, but can usually manage without them) have been broken for almost nine months now. I broke them during the winter when I sat on them by accident. If I hold them up to face, I can still use them,because they are'nt broken in half, they just have no arms.

It was'nt till school that I really need them. I can't read the boards now, because in most of the clasrooms, even the front row of seats is too far from the board for me to read what the teacher writes. It's not as bad when they use Powerpoint presentations and such, where the text is large and on a bright background. But even then, things are bit blurry.

I'll just have to man up and go around looking like a nerd. *Sigh*



Those are the first and second declension endings. In other words, my Latin midterm is tomorrow.

Oh yes, and I've lost all my confidence in passing now, having found that of the pages of study material I went over and copied, the practice quizzes I did and re-did, and the chapters I read, none of that information was on the test.

Monday, October 18, 2010



They do not contribute to my happiness.

That is all.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

I'm a bad Catholic.

Because, I don't see anything wrong with receiving communion only twice a week but going to mass every day. Yes, that means going to mass without receiving communion.
That's not the only reason though: I'm also a bad Catholic because I like to receive communion in both kinds.

But don't worry: I make up for it because I think it is a good and holy thing to prepare for one's communion the night before, or even a day before. I used to make my communion four times weekly, and I began my preparation the day before. (Except for Sundays, where, because I received communion on Saturday, I made my preparation starting the night before, after compline.)
Now I'm up to five times weekly. I expect to get reprimanded and told to stop going to mass without communion someday, once the word gets out that I only do it for pious devotional purpouses.
But, for me at least, it seems that my communions are a lot more fruitful and more reverently received when I make them a little less often and with a lot more preparation.

When attending the Holy Mass,

" As it would not be sufficient for thee if thou hadst all things except Me, even so whatsoever thou shalt give Me, if thou give Me not thyself, it cannot please Me. Offer thyself to Me, and give thyself altogether for God, so shall thy offering be accepted. Behold I offered Myself altogether to the Father for thee, I give also My whole body and blood for food, that thou mightest remain altogether Mine and I thine. But if thou stand in thyself, and offer not thyself freely to My will, thy oflering is not perfect, neither shall the union betwixt us be complete. Therefore ought the freewill offering of thyself into the hands of God to go before all thy works, if thou wilt attain liberty and grace. For this is the cause that so few are inwardly enlightened and made free, that they know not how to deny themselves entirely. My word standeth sure, Except a man forsake all, he cannot be My disciple. ' Thou therefore, if thou wilt be My disciple, offer thyself to Me with all thy affections."

-Imitation of Christ, book four, chapter eight.

And now,

A musical interlude.



I want to go to this.

Unfortunately,the person I hoped to give me a ride is'nt going to be able to go anymore, so I'm stuck. *Sigh* I was looking forward to it.
But even if I'm not going, anyone who's nearby, GO. Go to this. I'm hoping that maybe some day in the future, there would be an Ordinariate parish in Philadelphia. And if, God willing, there is one some day, I'd do my best to help them. I don't usually say it, because it scandalises people, but even though I'm here in Rome, a big part of me is still on the other side of the Thames.
(Hence it is that more website show up on my computer when you type in "Anglo" in the address bar than with any other terms. Even more than "Goog"

Oh Shoot.

Well, I found the managas that I want to read. (They're on mangafox) only, I do not remember what chapter I last read. I mean, I remember everything that happenned in those chapters,but I don't know what pages numbers of chapter numbers they were. Maybe I should go on Crunchyroll and ask in one of the groups I'm in.

Speaking of which, I loooove Crunchyroll. :heart: It's like a website version of Attack of the Show.* Anyway, I have midterms this week, and I have a lot to study. I have to go over first and second declension in Latin, the first three chapters of the history book, everything in the first nine sections of the catechism, and luckily, that's it. The algebra teacher sets the year up so that there are no midterms or final,but a cumulative test at the end of every quarter. And you can't really have a test for English composition. (Or at least that's what the teacher says.)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Work in Progress.

Just something I've been working on. I can't seem to get the face or crown of Mary right. *Sigh* Maybe in the future.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


A few months ago, when I still had my old, old computer, I saved in draft posts a whole bunch of stock sites, stock pages/searches on deviantArt, and some individual photos that I liked.

Or so I thought.

I need them again, and I went looking through my saved drafts on blogger to find them, and tey are not to be found. Actually, I found some of them, just not the ones I'm looking for. There are some quite nice poses that I hoped to use for a picture of the Assumption, and some pictures in profile that I hoped to used for a version of the Mass of S.Gregory. But none of those can be found.
So yeah, I'm lost. I don't even know where on Deviant Art I found the photos.

Cool Beans.

That we (as in the choir at Lourdes) are doing the Victoria requiem this year for All Souls Day. I did like the Cristobal Morales one, but oh well, Victoria is a more famous composer.

Oh yeah, if that didn't count as the announcement, there's a high mass on the evening of November 2 at Our Lady of Lourdes for All Souls day. The music, as you can see, will be good. (Victoria's requiem with chanted propers.)

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I like how it is that...

...I froze for a week because I did'nt have any fall or winter clothes here, and as soon as they get here, we're having a full week where the temperature does'nt go below 70 degrees. =/

Last night.

There was a thunderstorm. Usually I don't mind them, though they always scared Ginger. Only,last night at 3:24 AM exactly*, there was a clap of thunder so loud that I felt the floor vibrate,and As I was half asleep, I was so startled that my heart was must have been doing it's equivalent of donuts in the driveway.

That is all.

I know this because I looked at the clock immediately afterward so that I would know for future reference.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Oh Dear.

Well, I think I just lowered my I.Q. by half and lost about 10 Tolerance Points today.

Without telling where it was that I found it, I laboured through an article attacking 'religion'* in a local newspaper. I don't like to come to these sort of things with precognitions, since they prevent honest understandings, but the article was everything I feared it might be: It was full of non-sequiturs,contradictory arguments, false generalisations and facts that anyone with a Wikipedia article could disprove. Things like the idea that religion kills, while scientists never kill over science. Of course, most of us know that quite a few things done in the name of religion were mainly done of ulterior motives, with religions used as an excuse (e.g., the crusades, the Hundred Year's War, Manifest Destiny, etc.) And I need not mention the whole eugenics debacle and the Cold Spring Harbor lab as proof that scientists do kill over science.

There were non-sequiturs like the idea that we know that religions are false because we can't prove their claims. (Despite the fact that any right-thinking man knows that it's wrong to argue from silence) Further to that, the author used that line of logic as evidence that souls don't exist.(Which doesn't follow because if you're working within the framework of a theology that says that souls are invisible, intangible, and unprovable, stating that souls are invisible, intangible, and unprovable doesn't do anything to help your case. )

There was the whole "Religion X did wrong thing 'A', therefore, religion Y is bad!" thing. Failing to note distinctions among theologies and equating them with one another to the point that one attributes the actions of one to another is an illogical generalisation. It's as if one stated that all systems of government are exactly the same, therefore, the fact that fascist and communistic governments killed, tortured, and otherwise maltreated their citizens proves that a minarchist or anarchist system is evil!

Sometimes it seem that the best way to strengthen the theological virtue of faith is to read an introduction to logic and then browse through books and articles from the other viewpoint.

(Now, before someone gets their knickers in a knot, I know full well that not all scientists, agnostics, or atheists are like this, and I wouldn't dare argue something like that. I say only that it sometimes appears that most vocal supporters of atheism are often the least logical, and therefore, most ineffective people for the job.)

*That ought to have been a sign that this was going to be a Fallacy Fest.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Good news/Bad news.

Good news: I found the amber beads I wanted. I also found two nice sets of 18 and 16mm silver beads, and to my surprise, some white coral rondelle beads that match the gauds of the Magdalene paternoster.

Bad news: The person I'm buying them from seems to be purpousely making it impossible for me to purchase them. =/

Friday, October 8, 2010

I'm not superstitious*,

But the tradition is that the Phills had consecutive bad seasons since 1 Liberty Place was built, thus being the tallest building in the city, thus being taller than Billy.And then, they built the Comcast Center, and put a statue of Billy at the top, and then the past three seasons happenned.

I'm just sayin'....

And now,

A musical interlude.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

This is why we don't have nice things.

No, not this.*

I'm finding it impossible to make a copy of that rosary in the painting of the Magdalene. Do you know why?

Apparently, ther is NO place, ANYWHERE in the U.S.** that sells round or oval, non-faceted, 15-20mm, amber, yellow glass or acrylic beads. I can buy amber, but they won't be round, or they'll be faceted. I can get round and non faceted, but they'll be 10mm tops. There are no yellow acrylic beads, and glass ones are all 5-10mm max. I can't even find round, yellow, plastic beads that are between 15-20mm.I've exhausted all the possibilities with this thing,but there's no solution.
And that particular rosary is the one that I'll need to complete my set. I have a coral set, a jet set,an agate set and that set made out of the material whose name I forget.
I still plan on making one like this, it'll just be far in he future.

*Have I mentioned that one of the cats at home, Brutus, looks just like the TIWWCHNT cat?
**I found some in the UK, and some in New Zealand, but I'm Not paying that shipping and handling.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I feel important.

One of the seminarians in my class has asked me to make him one of my reproduction rosaries. The one I just made with coral and crystal is based on the one in This picture. I want to try to make a chaplet of the five wounds, and two reproductions 0f the rosary held by S.Joseph in Van der Weyden's painting of the Magdalene reading.


More good news.

Of a domestic nature. I got a call last night from my mother that our long awaited quest to move to a new home in a new neighborhood has finally come to an end. The house that she and my brother (And I ) put an offer on was accepted, and she and my brother will be moving in by thanksgiving.

Sure, I know that I won't be living there, except for a few weeks a year, but I'm happy. No one who lives in West Philly wants to live there. It's a landing pad. A place where you live only for short time, with plans to go somewhere better.It's not really a bad section, and a lot of it can be quite expensive to live in. It had always been my family's dream to some day move to University City, near the hospital where my father worked, and the school where my mother worked. I'm a bit sad that the time has finally come for that happen, but only because of the circumstances: I'm here at the monastery, dad is gone, my brother will be in school next year. It is'nt ideal,but that's just the way things go.

The only thing now is that my new territorial parish for when I'm at home is now St. Francis De Sales.It's a nice church, with a wonderful organ, and the choir was astonishingly professional when I was there every now and then in 07' (When I was still shopping for a parish)
But I heard that their choral mass has now been combined with the contemporary music mass. I don't know if this is actually true,nor do I know if this affects the quality of the music, so I won't give much credence to the rumour.

Friday, October 1, 2010

I hate it when this happens.

When I stop reading a comic/manga series for a long time, and come back to it only to find that it's jumped far ahead of where I last left off with it. I'll jappily admit that I don't get to read comics as much as a like. You would think that I would, since they're much cheaper than manga, even cheaper than Shonen Jump. But the local stores are pretty far out of the way, and I don't have a car. Also, manga can be read for free online. Comics are involved in so many copyrights and licenses that that's totally impossible. Anyway, I really want to start reading Green Arrow. I've never really read his comic, I only looked him up when he showed up in other series I was reading. I have'nt the slightest idea where to start since, unlike manga, comics usually have multiple story arcs and hundreds of volumes, which can make it difficult to pick a starting issue.Pick too far ahead and you'll miss lots of backstory and information. Pick too far back, and the current arc will get too far ahead of you.

So I'll just ask Gaia or see if anyone will give me a reccomendation.

Also, I really love the covers that some of these recent volumes have. I haven't seen the insides, but the covers are wonderful. My post image was a toss up between that one and This. I only picked the one I used because that one is a little violent, what with the blood and wounds, and the arrow sticking out of the corpse's forehead. I think it's an awesome and very well done cover though.