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Pentecost XI

✠ The Bishop’s Corner ✠
August began Wednesday, a heavy dark day made lighter by a beautiful Mass to mark the feast of St. Peter’s Chains. The Epistle tells it all. If you would like to understand the why and the how of this long vacancy of the Apostolic See, why the Church, why our churches are kept in chains, read over Acts 12:1-11. Meditate it.

Someone told me recently of a friend who was angry with God for this terrible crisis in the Church, the so long vacancy. Wrong reaction! God sends or permits this chastisement. You should be able to figure out the reason why as you consider the slow infiltration of modernism into the Church during the last century, and how Catholics took their Mass for granted. And there will always be Herods, too, seeking to please the enemy. Never mind. God’s Will. Be at peace.

Thus St. Peter sleeps, and sleeps soundly in prison, surrounded by soldiers. The angel fills the cell with light, but the apostle snores on. He finally strikes Peter to awaken him. The Apostle obediently follows the angel out, past all of the guards. He thinks he is dreaming. But he is free, when and how God determines to hear the prayer of the church, made “without intermission.”

God will solve the crisis in the Church when He wills. Ours it is to resign ourselves peacefully to His holy will, and carry on praying. No anger. No despair. No need to “help” God with outlandish new-fangled theories which only make things worse. In an instant the prison will flood with light, and the chains fall off the Chair of Peter. Persevere.

Anent the subject of not taking things for granted, we have been blessed with Exposition and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament for four days in a row. How wonderful it would be if some came for the Transfiguration Mass (8 AM and 5 PM) tomorrow, just in a spirit of thanks and adoration. Remember this feast is one of gratitude for a Christian victory over the Moslems, as well as one of just “it is good for us to be here.”

Fr. Oscar Saavedra of Detroit has decamped to Australia for the duration, until young Fr. Eldracher gets his visa. Fr. Eldracher is enjoying a time at his “home chapel,” Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, and near to his family too. Fr. Saavedra’s mother is very ill, which must be a preoccupation for her priest son. Keep them both in your prayers. Fr. Palma will have returned now from his pleasant stay in Australia.

Fr. McGuire is enjoying a refreshing vacation in hot, humid but sunny Florida, near the seminary. Fr. McKenna is back for a few days this evening from his latest mission visits, but leaves Thursday for a wedding in Spokane. Fr. Cekada has been completing his latest project (he always has at least two or three going) of an audiobook version of his apodictic Work of Human Hands, on the Novus Ordo. He has a little recording studio in the basement (“Cekadawood,” we call it) to which he retreats when I leave the house. The house is pretty noisy for a rectory it seems, and absolute silence is required for recording. The air goes off as well.

Fr. Arnoldo Villegas, with a group of young people from his Tijuana church, will be coming for a visit Tuesday evening. I hope they can get to know at least some of our families. These kinds of connections are very important, especially for our youth. We Gertrudians have a lot to offer, come to think of it, for we have received so much. Our best way to give thanks is to share.

Don’t forget St. Philomena this Saturday. And do mark your calendar for Mary next week: the Rosary Procession on Monday evening, and the great Holy Day, Assumption, on Wednesday, August 15.
I place you all in the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

– Bishop Dolan