Last evening-- paid this very little attention, supposing it was simply the heat of the day giving way to the relative coolness of the night, as always happens. Good heavens, I had to turn the fan off at Matins, it having become too chilly for it still to be on. It is the feast of Saint Paulinus, Bishop and Confessor (Introibo, CE, Wiki), who was educated by Ausonius. From the Martyrology for yesterday.
Apud Nolam, Campániæ urbem, natális beáti Paulíni, Epíscopi et Confessóris, qui ex nobilíssimo et opulentíssimo factus est pro Christo pauper et húmilis, et, quod superérat, seípsum pro rediméndo víduæ fílio, quem Wándali, Campánia devastáta, captívum in Africam abdúxerant, in servitútem dedit. Cláruit autem non solum eruditióne et copiósa vitæ sanctitáte, sed étiam poténtia advérsus dǽmones; ejúsque præcláras laudes sancti Ambrósius, Hierónymus, Augustínus et Gregórius Papa scriptis suis celebrárunt. Ipsíus corpus, póstea Benevéntum et inde Romam translátum, tandem, Summi Pontíficis Pii Décimi jussu, Nolæ restitútum fuit.
At Nola, a city of Campania, the blessed Confessor Paulinus, Bishop of that city. He was a very noble and wealthy person who became for Christ's sake poor and lowly, and then in addition gave himself up for a slave in order to redeem a widow's son whom the Vandals had carried off as a prisoner to Africa when they wasted Campania. He was illustrious, not only on account of his learning and of the abounding holiness of his life, but also on account of his power against evil spirits. His praises have been set forth in their writings with great force by Saints Ambrose, Jerome, Augustine, and Gregory the Great. His body was brought from Beneventum to Rome [and lay with honour along with the body of the holy Apostle Bartholomew in the church of that Apostle on the island in the Tiber] until by decree of Pope Saint Pius X it was restored to the city of Nola.
Few indeed of the Fathers were eulogised by the four great Doctors, Saints Ambrose, Augustine, Jerome, and Gregory the Great (am being rhetorical of course: haven't made a study of which saints can count the most encomia from the greatest number of the Fathers). Am wondering at Divinum Officium this morning, as Introibo points out that this feast before John XXIII's nonsense had the rank of duplex with nine lessons, those of the 3rd nocturn being from a homily of Saint Paulinus. Tsk, tsk; my nonsense in fact: I said the Tridentine Office from 1570, which gives the feast the rank of simplex, meaning three lessons, without checking the 1910 Office and the Divino afflatu Office-- and without checking my Ordo, which is as always clearly marked: duplex. Tsk. I will read the lessons later on.
From an allocution of Pope Benedict XVI in 2007.
... St Paulinus did not write theological treatises, but his poems and ample correspondence are rich in a lived theology, woven from God's Word, constantly examined as a light for life. The sense of the Church as a mystery of unity emerges in particular from them. Paulinus lived communion above all through a pronounced practice of spiritual friendship. He was truly a master in this, making his life a crossroads of elect spirits: from Martin of Tours to Jerome, from Ambrose to Augustine, from Delphinus of Bordeaux to Nicetas of Remesiana, from Victricius of Rouen to Rufinus of Aquileia, from Pammachius to Sulpicius Severus and many others, more or less well known. It was in this atmosphere that the intense pages written to Augustine came into being. Over and above the content of the individual letters, one is impressed by the warmth with which the Saint of Nola sings of friendship itself as a manifestation of the one Body of Christ, enlivened by the Holy Spirit. Here is an important passage that comes at the beginning of the correspondence between the two friends: "It is not surprising if, despite being far apart, we are present to each other and, without being acquainted, know each other, because we are members of one body, we have one head, we are steeped in one grace, we live on one loaf, we walk on one road and we dwell in the same house" (Ep. VI, 2). As can be seen, this is a very beautiful description of what it means to be Christian, to be the Body of Christ, to live within the Church's communion. The theology of our time has found the key to approaching the mystery of the Church precisely in the concept of communion. The witness of St Paulinus of Nola helps us to perceive the Church, as she is presented to us by the Second Vatican Council, as a sacrament of intimate union with God, hence, of unity among all of us and, lastly, among the whole human race (cf. Lumen Gentium, n. 1)....
Time for Prime. Today is the day of the monthly visit to the pharmacy i.e. am having to go out much later than normal, it not opening until 0900.
Post Tertiam. An essay by Dr Kwasniewski on devotion to Saint John the Baptist, the Vigil of whose Nativity is celebrated tomorrow.
... How sad it is to reflect on the fact that nowadays, at nearly all celebrations of the Novus Ordo, the name of St. John the Baptist, the greatest man born of woman, will not be mentioned even once. (The only time he’d be mentioned at all is if the Roman Canon were chosen ad libitum.) This is the kind of thing traditionalists have in mind when they speak of the different spiritualities of the old and new “forms” of the Mass. The devotional worldview of those brought up on the novel production of Paul VI is not the same as that of our predecessors in the Faith and of those who retain the traditional form of worship. Thank God, more and more Catholics are coming to see the immense value in reconnecting with their birthright: the lex orandi and lex credendi of the Roman Church of the ages.
Must prepare to go out, tsk. Just in time, probably, for the clouds to disappear and Phoebus to show forth his power. Have a new bee in my bonnet, caused by the evident inability of so many to distinguish between the law as it exists and custom or tradition ('tradition', not Tradition). One notices this most commonly because people fuss about whether it is still of obligation to fast/abstain (tomorrow, e.g., the Vigil of the Nativity of Saint John Baptist)-- it is not, because the general law now in force requires fast and abstinence on a very limited number of clearly prescribed days (Fridays in Lent, Good Friday). One may fast and abstain, in conformity with the custom of the Fathers and Tradition, but one is not canonically obliged to do so, just as one may question the wisdom of the present law. Not rocket science. Another instance of this is indulgences. No, the 'perpetual grant of six quarantines' for the recitation of prayer N. made by Gregory XII is no longer is in force, it not being included in Paul VI's 1968 Enchiridion indulgentiarum as revised by John Paul II. It may be that 'prayer N.' can gain a partial indulgence if it can be fitted into one of the four general grants, but that is a different matter. Pastoral practices, as distinct from matters of doctrine, no matter how many times perpetual may have been used by past pontiffs and prelates to emphasize their authority or the perceived importance of whatever they were perpetuating, are subject to the supreme judgment of the reigning Roman Pontiff. Must get ready to go out. There's the bright sunshine right on cue.
Post Sextam. My pessimism wasn't warranted, at any rate about the sweatiness of the return from the pharmacy. It has been alternately sunny and overcast, and breezy; it's possible that the mages' prediction of a high of 85 degrees will prove mistaken.
I have been reading at the Pillar since those fellows started at it. It is Mr Flynn who wrote this today:
... As you already know, the NY Times and CNN did not focus their recaps of the bishops’ meeting on the catechetical institute project. It came as no surprise that, immediately after voting totals were announced on Friday, there was wall-to-wall media coverage of the bishops’ conference meeting, most of it asserting that the U.S. bishops had made a historic move to censure Biden, and much of it framing that move as a USCCB repudiation of the pope. Readers of The Pillar know how fantastical those accounts really are....
He goes on to recall something Mr Condon wrote,
earlier this week 'over the weekend', I guess, about the Bishops' abdication of their teaching authority (which is certainly the reality I see; am using Condon's text to illustrate this whereas in fact his direct purpose is more circumscribed-- and he is more circumspect) in the last fifty years, this grievous crime happening more or less to coincide with the 'post-conciliar epoch', for some reason or reasons.
... Within the context of the conference’s discussion on Eucharistic coherence, the real problem, it seems, is not the number of pro-abortion politicians receiving Communion. It is the number of Catholics who don’t seem to acknowledge there’s actually such a thing as the state of grave sin, still less a terrible spiritual harm attached to it....
As so many others have pointed out, the Bishops, negligent in their duty to teach and proclaim the Catholic Faith, whole and entire, for decades, seem suddenly to have been prodded awake from a nap to discover that enormous numbers of nominal Catholics don't believe in the dogmas of the Faith-- about the purposes of the Incarnation of Our Lord, about sin, redemption, and death, about the holy Sacraments, about the great mystery of the Eucharistic Sacrifice and our own participation in the Lord's Body and Blood. My own guess is that they will very quickly nod off back to sleep but spes contra spem. And, in any case, it is never really a question of 'the Bishops' as if they were a single automaton: there have been, and are, individual prelates who take their responsibilities seriously etc etc. Et cetera.
Post Vesperas. From the 9th lesson at Matins, taken from a homily of Saint Paulinus-- alias Epistola 34 de Gazophylacio, not that I'm quite sure what that means. Gazophylacius is treasury or muniment room; perhaps he is going letter after letter about the spiritual treasury that is the communio sanctorum.
Adversárius enim noster non quiéscit, et in nostrum pérvigil hostis intéritum óbsidet omnes vias nostras. Multæ prætérea nobis in hoc sæculo cruces, innúmera discrímina, morbórum labes, fébrium ignes et dolórum tela grassántur in ánimas, cupiditátum faces accendúntur; ubíque præténti latent láquei, úndique stricti horrent gládii, inter insídias et pugnas vita transígitur, et per ignes dolóso cíneri suppósitos ambulámus. Igitur, priúsquam in áliquam tantárum ægritúdinum labem casu vel mérito actus incúrras, festína médico suscéptus et carus fíeri, ut in témpore necessitátis parátum hábeas remédium salútis. Aliud est, quando tu solus oras pro te; et áliud, quando multitúdo pro te apud Deum trépidat.
Our adversary doesn't sleep, and the always watchful enemy besets all our ways in order to bring us to ruin...
It is too late to continue with this; there is a translation at Divinumofficium.com.
It is the feast of Saint John Fisher (16th century), of Saint Flavius Clemens (1st century), and of Saint Everard of Salzburg (12th century).
V. Et álibi aliórum plurimórum sanctórum Mártyrum et Confessórum, atque sanctárum Vírginum. R. Deo grátias.