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Epiphany II

Bishop’s Corner
Christmas reached its high point with Epiphany on January 6, a feast of devotion which we observed as the holiest of holy days, and a true holiday. Our school children sweetly chanted the First and Second Vespers which begin and end the liturgical day. Other children joined us and helped for the Solemn High Mass in the morning. The Epiphany sacramentals were blessed. Mr. Lotarski prepared a beautiful brunch for everyone after Mass. Fr. McGuire and some servers went everywhere with burning frankincense and Holy Water and blessed chalk to bring the Epiphany exorcism and blessing throughout church and school and houses. I organized the little children for a nice Epiphany story, and then we met in church for the closing Epiphany Vespers and Benediction. It was a perfect day.

The next day turned snowy for Fr. Fliess’ Solemn High Mass and our Appreciation Dinner, and we were sad to miss some who could not come. Others spent hours on the road but made it here and home safely. I was impressed with the eighty plus who came, and rejoiced with the Sacred Heart to see so many for the first First Friday of the year. Thanks to all who came and helped, especially the Lotarskis, who gave two wonderful parties in as many days. This was the “double up” Christmas, everything being done in twos, as the holy days were followed by the Sundays, and even Epiphany was doubled; but then again so was our joy.

It was wonderful to see so many get in on the Solemn Adoration, making devout visits during the evening hours. And how edifying that many of our men of the Guard of Honor came early and stayed late for their adoration. Truly, God’s Providence turns into blessings our snowy trials.

On Saturday morning we had the joy of a wedding, Mr. Vili Lehtoranta assisting his fellow Finn, Kent Maki, as he wed Linda Elswick. There was a nice reception afterwards in Helfta Hall.

Saturday afternoon we received the sad news of the death of Ernie Nellenbach. Ernie had been sick for over a year, and died peacefully surrounded by his family, out East. His Church family will miss him very much. We will give him a Funeral on Wednesday, a Rosary for one who always prayed many, and a Solemn Requiem Mass with three priests for a man who loved the Mass, and served the priests so loyally and humbly. I have the impression that his soul, transformed by the divine alchemy of prayer and suffering, is now in a position to help us even more than he did in life with his work and example; and that he will help us.

It was wonderful to have Fr. Fliess offer Mass for us and preach last weekend. He is now finishing his studies at the seminary, but will be helping a little on the mission circuit as well.

Fr. Ercoli kindly visited our Louisiana chapel for their monthly Mass last Sunday, but was stranded afterwards for a few days with that southern ice storm. Our Cajun Catholics took good care of him, however.

South of the border, Fr. Mardones is surviving in battle-torn Juarez, suffering only from the flu. Fr. Siordia on Cocoyoc, Morellos, was a little ill from exhaustion after the great feast of Our Lord of the Expiration at New Year’s. The crowds numbered some 1500! All went safely and peacefully.

Fr. Roger in France has invited Bishop Sanborn for a visit next month. Newly ordained Fr. Hecquard reports he is staying very busy, and that a lay brother formerly with Pius X, recently joined them and is a great assistance. Fr. Romero, another priest assistant to Fr. Roger, recently sent Fr. Cekada the French translation of his study “The Grain of Incense,” which is now being distributed. Let us pray that more eyes will be opened, both at home and abroad, to the dangers of sacrilegious Masses in which a false pope and a real antichrist is proclaimed as Vicar of Christ in the sacred Canon. God is not mocked.

The poor Fr. Abbot Leonard Giardina, a truly charitable father in Christ to so many, died on First Friday. He will be buried later after the weather clears. On Monday a simple low Mass during the ice storm served for a funeral. Let us continue to beg the little Heart of our Infant King to save the Abbey from falling into the hands of the one world church, the dark flame which seems so irresistible to many a moth, and not just monks. May the love and light of Christ outshine the darkness through you.

Stay with the Light of Christ! Join us at church or at home as we gather at St. Peter’s vacant seat on Tuesday to begin the Chair of Unity Octave devotions, a work of supernatural charity. God bless those of you who continue with your monthly Holy Hours. We have so much to pray for, both in the way of petition as well as gratitude. Pray with us.

May the blessings of prayer be yours.
-Bishop Dolan