Saturday, 30 March 2013

He hath Died.

Sorry I am a little late, but ......

Consummatum est. Et inclinato capite tradidit spiritum.

Friday, 29 March 2013

The Rad Trads Just Cannot be Silent: Travesty at Rorate Caeli, Even During the Triduum

Hello Everyone.

Man I am really getting sick to my stomach with regards to what I'm witnessing on the blogosphere, especially with regard to Pope Francis and the criticism with regard to his Holy Thursday Mass, and his papacy in general.

When you read something like this at Rorate Caeli with regard to Pope Francis, it really makes you want to hate Traditional Catholicism of the Catholic Church. That kind of sentiment is flat out wrong. But it's posts like that one, which really test your devotion to the Catholic Church and the Faith.

The gist of the posting was to cover the Holy Thursday Mass he did at that prison for the youth. When I heard that he was going to do the optional foot washing rite, or the Mandatum, with 10 boys and 2 girls, and one or both who was a Muslim according to some accounts, I knew right away, and even told my best friend in faith to watch the blogosphere/web as I was sure the Rad Trads would come out swinging. And boy they can be cruel and heartless, not willing to listen to reason.

Personally, I don't think that it is right for our Holy Father, to violate the liturgy and its laws governing it, for the sake of humility and to "set an example", even if you are the Vicar of Christ on Earth. I am not the only one to comment and that is probably the only valid statement in that whole post. Fr Zuhlsdorf of WDTPRS once again breaks down what the black and red is with regards to doing it properly here (as well as that he doesn't support the actions he did in the liturgy). In addition, popular online Canon Lawyer, Ed Peters, also disagrees with the Pope's actions and even gives us the Canon Law on the issue in one of his archived posts here. However, supposedly, according to Canon Law, 85-93, as one poster on Fr. Z commented, he does have the power to do this, and Ed Peters has not explored those laws in connection to Pope Francis' actions.

Back to that Rorate Caeli post, I saw horrible things mostly, with a little common sense thrown in, but mostly vitriol and doom and gloom prophecies. My "favourite" was that Pope Francis is here to intentionally cause a schism in the Catholic Church. Uh, really? Last time I checked, the Matt 16:18 rule was in place. No way Jesus would allow someone to purposely cause a schism or big tear in the wedding dress of his Holy Bride. Further, you see, the Church is like those famous Russian word-reversal jokes (in faux-Russian accent): "Pope cause schism to people. In Catholic Church, people cause schism to Pope." What do I mean? It is never the Holy Father or the institutional Catholic Church itself that causes schisms from within. No matter how hard any bad Pope tried through their foolishness or intentionally (if they ever had bad human intentions), the Church has withstood even the "worst" of Popes for 2000+ years and counting. EVERY TIME in history, it's always the people who cause their own schismatic breaks and form groups/sects/"fraternities" not in communion with the Church. So logically and by history, it is a stupid claim. The Anti-Christ will NOT be a Pope. Get over it.

Any traditional Catholic should know that despair is also a sin, and a deadly one too, though not of the traditional 7. The way it was explained to me, back at the ol' SMCS in my Gr. 12 Moral Theology Class, is that despair is a sister sin to Sloth. Where sloth is spiritual apathy, despair is abandoning all hope in God and those things supernatural (which includes his Catholic Church and the Catholic Faith), which plummets us to deeper sin, and even depression. So what these "traditional Catholics" don't realize is they are driving people like myself to despair and flee the Church for "facsimiles" not in Communion with empty sacraments, like the SSPX, or to believe the lies of the world and not even enter the Church at all, or to stay "fallen away" or "ex-Catholic." Not that I will do that. Not when I've come so far. Linkin Park's In The End will NOT be the  song of my life.

More so, it's quite shameful that during the most important time of the year liturgically, the pinnacle of the Faith life for us Catholics, the Holy Triduum, they cannot shut their mouths, and be humble and contemplate the Lord's Passion, Death, and Resurrection.

I think what is best is that we should take the best out of the situation, and try to understand the why's behind it all, instead of spewing hot-lava vitriol. Fr. Z actually does this best, here:

Better yet, if you are so inclined to read the blog of a Novus Ordo, Benedictine tertiary who`s a woman, the ever lovely Anchoress, Elizabeth Scalia, you`ll love her anaysis on Pope Francis`message, particularly there`s a grey-box quote near the bottom. You`ll love that. Here:

So this Triduum, focus not on what the Pope is not doing, reflect on his homilies, and divert the rest of your prayers and attention to the real number one in your life: Christ, who was crucified, died, buried, descended from the dead, and on the third day he rose again, in fulfillment of the Scriptures.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin.

P.S. As a nice ending note, even in the Novus Ordo liturgy, parishes can ``Say the Black and Do the Red.`` My Novus Ordo parish did the following, awesome, "traditional Catholic" practices tonight with regard to the Liturgy:

  • Had a full complement of servers as if it was a High/Solemn Mass: A thurifer and a boat bearer, crucifer, two acolytes, one other server (don't know his role), and two senior servers (over 18+) who are equivalent by age and experience to parish "Masters of Ceremonies"
  • Had the bells ringing throughout the Gloria. This was the last time it was rung, and will be, until Easter
  • Had our parish deacon, read the Gospel, as they do in the EF. 
  • Did the Mandatum Properly! It involved 12 males only, of varying ages in the parish (even two young children), and it was done by the celebrant, washing their actual feet.
  • During the transfer to the altar of repose, the choir sang the whole Pange Lingua in LATIN in the traditional music! Unlike my former parish who just did the English version, not even ".... tantum ergo sacramentum ... "
  • This one really knocked me for a whirly ...... THEY USED A CROTALUS IN PLACE OF THE BELLS DURING THE LITURGY OF THE EUCHARIST!!!! I COULD NOT BELIEVE IT! Wow .... More and more I am loving my new spiritual home for the Novus Ordo (1 year and going on!)
I'll probably post something small tomorrow without analysis or commentary, and won't post until after Easter. 

Thursday, 28 March 2013

What? Gaia Mass in Archdiocese of Toronto??? We Need to Help our Archdiocesan Office.

Hello Everyone,

Look, there's a lot of stuff going out in the blogosphere these days. We can look at it and really wonder who these people are that write these things, or why things happen in archdioceses. The expression is though, that even "a broken clock chimes correctly twice a day." Unfortunately, something did chime in this morning about something in my own archdiocese.

I woke up to find this in my blogger feed. Here the blogger talks about some "Gaia Mass" happening in the diocese at Holy Name Parish staffed by a Fr. Morrasse. Normally this is not the kind of blog I like to give attention to on S.U.D, but this issue, deserved some reflection and attention and I had to think about this one. Is this an over-reaction to the event? What could have happened? What is the parish and Archdiocese saying/doing with regards to this?

Yeah .... it was happening ....  

Unfortunately, the claim that the blogger makes that this was featured on the Archdiocesan website under their News and Events page, is true.

I'll reveal something to all of you. A week ago, I did find this entry on their website, while looking for an entry for the St. Joseph's Feast Day Solemn Latin Mass at SLTM (which I found out later, was just that the organizer had not called/e-mailed the archdiocese. No ill will here between both parties, despite others perceptions of the diocesan office with regard to the EF). I took a snapshot of the page:
Found March 17, 2013 on the News and Events Page of the Archdiocesan Website. 

Why would I do this? Well, see, I was planning to write one crazy post on the matter. I really went away at it, but I just really felt uncomfortable writing what I had. Now before you go and demand like the crowd in the Passion for me to be crucified for being a failure to the Traditional Catholic community, listen to why I did not.

Something just didn't sit right with me releasing it in a manner like other blogs. I also have a mandate on this blog to be a positive example of the EF community, and not to misrepresent it as a EF-serving/participating Catholic. So before I wanted to do something so "radical," I sought out the council of trusted allies and friends (including a holy and noble priest of the Church) in the Catholic Faith, both of the EF and who are devout but attend the OF. While they too were shocked, I was counseled by them that there are more prudent means than this to go about slogging such a post of that nature. I listened to them and did not release the post. I have it archived on my computer as a personal testament, but also to keep what I found in my research.

However, in light of the revelation, and seeing as I knew about this earlier, I want to give my take on this matter. If you want to know more about the Church's stance on New Age Spirituality, please see this:
The Pontifical Council For Culture & Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue: "JESUS CHRIST THE BEARER OF THE WATER OF LIFE, A Christian reflection on the “New Age.” Please especially view 1.4, 2.1, 2.3.1, as well as the Catechism of the Catholic Church sections 2112-2113, 2120:

My two biggest concerns about this are as follows:
1) By Conducting Such a Mass, if they are still on, it is highly possible that the Masses with be ILLICIT (Not conducted according to Church Law and the Liturgy as set out in the Missal) AND INVALID (NO SACRAMENT WILL TAKE PLACE!)

Plain and simple. If the Mass includes all these elements NOT APPROPRIATE to the liturgy, won`t be conducted according to the proper liturgical norms in the GIRM and the Roman Missal, AND Christ is Not the focus of the Masses, but ``Gaia/Mother" Earth is, then this will violate the three things necessary for a Mass to be valid: 
  • Proper Form (Liturgy), 
  • Matter (the instuments used AND the correct physical substances of a host with enough gluten to be wheat matter + wine from fermented grapes), 
  • and INTENT. The intent will be violated on the basis of Christ not being worshipped and focused on in the Mass. The "Sacrifice" if anything, will be focused on the Earth, a finite/real object. Not our Lord. 

More importantly:
2) Possible, Irreparable spiritual damage and harm will be done or started to the faithful, ESPECIALLY the young children involved in the Masses/performances. This can be beginning of damage to their spiritual, psychological, and mental development, or make worse what is already evident in their lives. 

Yes, There are likely young children involved in the Mass/orchestra/dancing, etc. This is tied to the Holy Name school and parish, and therefore, some of its parishioners who are children, and/or attend the school, might be part of this production or will see it. Unlike adults, who whether they were poorly catechized by "the system" or not have the faculties to truly reject the Catholic faith if they so will it, young children are impressionable and over- trusting in adults, so much they hinge of most or every word adults tell them as `truth` or knowledge. 

Young children usually do not develop self-awareness or self-reasoning abilities until they start to enter puberty and carry out (poorly or not), self-independence. Which is why I am highly concerned if these Masses, or hopefully concerts only, take place next Wednesday and Friday. It is SO essential, between parents, clergy, teachers, etc. To give them the firmest foundation possible in their youths, so that they can be ready to delve deeper into their faith as adults and when challenges come their way, it is like a rock, and not like something built on sand that collapses along with them. What this Mass will do is build up an apathy/resistance in their young impressionable minds to the Catholic faith, including anything even Jesus-y related. 

I'll also give one more interesting tidbit about kids: Once they get into their tweens (EDGE ages, which is Grades 6-8 or 10-14), they "wake up" so to speak in a certain sense, and those self-reasoning and self-awareness abilities kick in. That includes knowing straight up when adults are lying to them or being honest in their actions and their selves. THEY WILL NOT BE STUPID. They might be smiley and happy about what they do, but most will know you are serving them processed baloney when they really want the "organic, healthy and nutritious" meat of the Truth of the Catholic Faith. If they see Fr. is not serious about his role as an alter Christus, their parents don`t care about the faith, and their teachers don`t either, in actions like this `Mass`, they will think that Mass is a joke, It`s not obligatory or even that it is the re-presentation of the Passion, Death, and Resurrection of our Lord, and worse, they`ll leave the Catholic Faith faster than I can type a corny yoga joke on my keyboard. Really though, I`m being serious here. 

And worse, the spiritual damage that New Age Practices can do can really wreak havoc on one`s life, and those around you:

E.g. of Spiritual and Psychological Damage in the Form of an MTV Celebrity: Spencer Pratt (and his wife, Heidi Montag)
Take the example of former MTV celebrity, Spencer Pratt, from the self-absorbed and materialistic MTV production, ``The Hills`` (as in Beverly Hills, California). The ``reality`` show followed the lives of four main protagonists/antagonists/frenemies ... four privileged women living out "dream jobs" and posh lifestyles in Beverly Hills, with a cast of supporting characters (and enemies).

One supporting "character"/actor was Spencer Pratt, a blond young guy in his twenties, who ended up being the boyfriend and now legal husband of the main character, Heidi Montag. He was entertaining as a ``bad guy``, but unfortunately, as he delved further into being famous, he succumbed to New Age Spiritual practices, particularly in the form of "healing crystals". This aspect of the show was NOT scripted. As he got further into the practice and his fame, he became quite outrageous in behaviour (`famously emphasized in his `I want Heidi to myself!`` quote) and even his appearance. Seriously, here's some pictures back of him in 2010 during the height of his crystal worship:

Spencer Pratt: Poster Child for New Age Spirituality, complete with healing crystals, other deity or physical object worship stance, Tye Dye Shirt, and "Enlightened" Facial Expressions. You can be just like him! Be in tune with the harmonizing energies of crystals ...."

His life fell apart and he did irreparable harm to those important to him in his life. He pushed his own sister (Stephanie Pratt) out of his life and only acknowledges her as a blood relative, seen in the famous "un-friending" scene. With only the empty values of society and his crystals by his side, he was unsupportive to Heidi and allowed her to undergo multiple plastic surgeries when Heidi was clearly a physically, beautiful woman, even before all that. He essentially forced his wife to end, unjustly, the strong friendship that Heidi shared with the show's main protagonist, Lauren Conrad. Further, he spent a ridiculous amount of money on those crystals, over $500,000 on them! Combined with ludicrous spending that the celebrity society encourages, he and Heidi were in serious financial troubles post-Hills! 

While he did try to sell off the crystals, and/or got rid of them, one can clearly see that this "poster boy" for the New Age Spirituality clearly went off his rocker with the whole thing. To this day, he and Heidi still try to engage in whatever the reality TV world offers them, having no other bearing to guide their life other than the principles of the secular world and left behind tatters of New Age Spirituality. 

Had Spencer's life been deeply centered in the Catholic Faith under Christ, he would have likely not gone off the deep end. Further, he would have valued the friendship his wife had with Lauren, he would have valued his wife more and tried to help her see that she is not just a token physical object, but in union with her a reflection of the Trinity and a reflection of Christ and his Bride, the Church. Why, he might have even chosen a more noble path in life, had he been deeply rooted in his Faith, having been led by our Lord to his true vocation and lifelong dedication. Being part of the celebrity culture is bad enough, but New Age Spirituality make him go off the deep end, and clearly this individual is in dire need of prayers, as well as those whom are in his life.

How does Spencer connect to all this? This is what can happen to the children, should they experience and be exposed to this. Sadly, most people don't understand the harm it can do to your Faith, yourself, and those around you. 

However, one question remains, Why?

My Take on the Archdiocese's Role in all This ... And an interesting revelation.

This is kind of a hard one to say who's right and wrong in this. I'll get to the critical point first. 

Like all workplaces, institutions, etc. There will always be a few bad eggs in the mix. There are all kinds of examples out there of people who in office truly have liberal or self-absorbed agendas, or are negative Nancies who seek the job for power/money purposes/pride and love to take down others with them. Furthermore, yes, the media is indicating the "wrongs" rather than the "rights" of clergy in action, and yes, some of them have committed liturgical and even sexual crimes worthy of excomunnication. 

While it is possible there might be someone in an office, institution, etc. like this, the majority of the time, the general body of workers in a workplace, including management, is NOT so. I, Julian Barkin, of Servimus Unum Deum, have never known or met an Archdiocesan Official who I can clearly say with a big fat finger, is of this nefarious type, so portrayed in right-wing Catholic blogs (e.g. Rorate Caeli) and intentionally posted this event to cause direct spiritual harm to the flock of the Archdiocese under ++Collins' pastoral care. 

Unless hard evidence is submitted about the clergy and/or the liturgical team of the parish that proves/disproves culpability of their administration or actions in all this, I will state for now, that it is unclear who was responsible for this and why. I have no affiliation with the parish or the clergy/community there and therefore it cannot be determined whom is responsible for this. 

Furthermore, I found an interesting revelation on all this. The "school" mentioned in the News page may not likely be Holy Name elementary school. In fact this is what the Church's website's bulletin says for the concert :

"Concert-April 3 & 5 Cardinal Carter Academy for the Arts Music Department will present Missa Gaia at Holy Name Church Wednesday April 3 and Friday April 5  at 7 p.m. This concert will feature the combined choirs and select band/string performers of CCAA in an eclectic mix of traditional, contemporary and nature sounds all directed to praise Jesus Christ as Lord of all creation.  General Admission $15" Interestingly enough, they do not list ``new age`` here at all. However, if one will look in that document above from the Vatican, Gaia Worship IS in fact specifically addressed in the document. Also, thanks to another blog, So Con or Bust, I found the poster for this ``Earth Mass``

Missa Gaia (1-5) WEB.jpg
[ So um, like , God/Gaia is like, a huge whale man, and like, heaven is, like, one big ocean of choice waves man ...]

So I guess the bigger question, is then, is this really a Mass then, or is this an actual concert with a poorly done, New Age, Gaia-worshipping composition? Because if it is a concert and not a Mass, it`s still a really poor decision to expose the young students who are Catholic of Cardinal Carter, the parishioners both old and especially young, to New Age Spirituality, even through this concert. If CC, like the Masses of the Baroque and Classical eras of Music, is the orchestra accompanying the organ to provide music for the Masses, with the dancers acting in "liturgical dance," and real Masses will take place alongside CC's orchestra, then clearly it was absolutely right to alert the diocese. Furthermore, who submitted the advertisement for the Mass, and worded it in that manner, differently from the Archdiocesan page? Was it someone on behalf of Holy Name? From Cardinal Carter academy? Was it someone in the Archdiocese? Clearly someone twisted this advertisement from its listed form on the Church bulletin/webpage to the form that was on the Archdiocesan events page

When these events happen, unintentionally, or good-minded people, usually do not have the knowledge or skills necessary to handle an issue or protocols in place. In addition, there will be slip-ups and things not foreseen or passed by/ignored in these places. That or somewhere along the process from idea to completion, something is overlooked, or ignored, assumed to be fine, and so, it could become that one piece of the Jenga(TM) puzzle that results in the tower toppling over. 

Furthermore, the people working in this office are human, and do we know what happened that day in the office of Communications, or the Web office? Maybe the hypothetical, combined 2-person team of the Auxillary bishop in charge and the communications/web person who is a young graduate student doing his/her doctorate in Divinity at St. Augustine's, were overloaded with work in the Conclave absence of ++Collins, and on top of clerical duties and the young graduate's school stresses, the website work had to get done. 

That, or maybe one, or both the team members, didn't even know what New Age Spirituality/Liberal Theology is and just saw it as a Mass with kids/a concert, not knowing better. And thus it was passed. I would not be surprised if they did not with the crisis of catechesis in our institutional Church today, combined with the fact that general society loves doing things like Yoga, and that even certain retreats in Catholic spaces/retreat centers use New Age practices like Reiki and Ennagrams. They likely don't know it's not OK in the life of the Church, and just assume it is, without the proper knowledge from the CCC and the Vatican document mentioned earlier. 

Clearly, some investigation should be done or something said, as to why this was passed under the noses of the Archdiocesan Office, and better protocols for the News and Events page should be established to the mistake never happens again. That's what Hospitals, businesses, etc. do. I believe the term for that in institutional lingo is "Quality Assessment and Improvement."

Regardless, I state, in my honest opinion, that it is highly likely this was an unintentional mistake, not caught until likely the faithful of the diocese alerted the office on the matter. The Archdiocese
has at least started the proper process of rectifying the issue by removing it from their webpage, and I do not sense that there was any malicious attempt to harm the spiritual constitution of the faithful in this diocese. 

And this, everyone, shows just how vital your role in the life of the Church is! Even Bishop Fulton Sheen said once in a famous quote that it is the lay people who will help to govern the institutional Church's affairs and keep it in order. Because of your actions, you helped bring this to the attention of the diocese. At least on line, they have listened. 

I must ask of you, to assist the Archdiocese of Toronto under the governance of ++Collins, in their efforts to pastorally care for you, to HELP THEM. They are a human institutional body interwoven into the life of the Church, of whom Cardinal Collins is in charge of, to care for your spiritual and pastoral needs. However, our archdiocese is big, with over 250 parishes operating in it! That means many priests, seminarians, and laypeople! Can an office of maybe under 100 people working for it, ensure the spiritual integrity of your personal salvation and the pastoral life of the archdiocese all on its own? NO! Which is why you should do your best to spiritually co-operate with the office on affairs like this. When there is something spiritually detrimental in the archdiocese needing attention, please help the staff there and communicate with them in an effective, Catholic, charitable manner! They need your help, and they need to know what's going on. If you choose to concentrate on bashing them and not communicate with them, how will they know when there's a crisis or spiritual decay going on? Which is also why it must be more than a few people. It must be you, me, your friends, family. We have to Evangelize, Catechise, and then help those tools, institutions, etc. in the Church already in place. 

And that is my take on this matter. Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin of Servimus Unum Deum. 

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Progress Note and a Highlight of Pope Francis

Hello Everyone, just two short notes, one being a highlight:

1) I have the Cross Bearer and the Boat Bearer altar serving post, as well as part 5 of the step-by-step Mass Q & A post in progress. I'll release the altar serving one first, since I haven't released one since January. However, I need some time. I'm having difficulty finding the relevance of the roles (as in what do they mean? symbolism, etc.). I will need to call a couple of EF allies since my books have yielded zero ... the rest is easy to do since their roles are at selective points in the liturgy, in very small quantities overall.

2) HIGHLIGHT OF OUR HOLY FATHER ON LIFESITENEWS!!!!! He sees something really true in homosexuality .... and is not afraid to refer to Satan in what he does to wreck us spiritually! See here:

Pax, Julian.

Monday, 25 March 2013

Any Easter Extraordinary Form Masses in the Latin Rite???

Hello Everyone.

When it comes to the Extraordinary Form in the Roman Rite, the Archdiocese of Toronto, unfortunately does not have options for attending the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite for the Holy Triduum in the areas of densest population.

The only "church" in the core that does this for the Triduum, is one NOT IN COMMUNION with the Catholic Church, under the SSPX. I will NOT recommend you attend their "services" as that can lead you to becoming schismatic and therefore endangering your soul and separating you from the Holy Mother Church. I covered this here in this posting after their leader came to Canada for the "Hamburg speech" this past  Octave of Christmas.

Being as I do my best to cover the EF Masses that are occurring in the core of the archdiocese, I tried to see if anyone was doing anything, either Latin Novus Ordo, or EF, for the Triduum.  Because of the scarcity of Latin Novus Ordo OR EF Masses that are licit AND VALID in the archdiocese for the Triduum, I will be doing my best super-sleuthing and going outside of the GTA (which I call "core" in my postings) to see what Masses are available in Latin.

Greater Toronto Area (Formerly the Six Municipalities)

In the core of the diocese, the Oratorians at Holy Family and St. Vincent De Paul, St. Lawrence the Martyr, and the lay-organized choirs, are NOT holding any Latin Triduum services. Regular EF Masses will resume for Easter Sunday at those locations.

Suffragan/Outskirts of the Archdiocese (e.g. Kinkora, Schomberg ...)
I was able via the Internet and some phone calling to find the following:

St. Patrick's, Schomberg, Ontario  

  • Good Friday: 10:00 AM Latin Mass. EF. Level of Mass is Unknown.
  • Easter Sunday: Usual 9:00 AM Missa Lecta

Carmel of the Infant Jesus, Zephyr (Covent of Dislaced Carmelite Nuns)
WEBSITE: On the nuns themsleves:
Their assocation that covers 20 convents including Zephyr:
Pictures of the Convent and a mailing address:

In past this convent has had a priest and some servers go up to the convent to conduct the EF Mass. It is unknown if the Masses are made public to the community. Please contact the convent using the number at the links listed to inquire.

DIOCESE OF LONDON *Note: While I do not cover the diocese of London normally, I make an exception due to the scarcity of EF masses at this time in the liturgical calendar . Also, some EF participants in Toronto do have connections/ties/go out, to the Latin Mass community of London. 

St. Patrick's, Kinkora

  • Holy Thursday - 7:30pm EF at St. Vincent De Paul, Mitchell (29 Park Lane Mitchell, phone 1-519-354-2972)
  • Good Friday - 3:00pm EF at St. Vincent De Paul, Mitchell
  • Easter Sunday - Usual 12pm Solemn Latin Mass at St. Patrick`s Kinkora.

Toronto Traditional Mass Society has updated listings here:

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Latin Mass Report: Solemnity of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary, Organized by St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir

Hello Everyone.

The St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir, headed by Surinder S. Mundra, began its 2013 run of organizing Latin Masses throughout the archdiocese of Toronto. Its first Solemn Latin Mass for 2013, was held Tuesday evening at St. Lawrence the Martyr Catholic Church, Scarborough, Ontario. Considering the weather conditions, simple online/blog promotion of the Mass, and it was a workday/weekday evening, the Mass had a congregation of approximately 100 attendees! Given all that, it's clear that the Latin Mass is growing in our diocese and people do care about it!

The Roster for this Mass was: Fr. Steven Szakaczki, the resident Latin Mass Chaplain of SLTM, as our celebrant; Fr. Russell Asch, a fairly recent 2011 Ordinani for the Archdiocese of Toronto (see brief but highly interesting biography feature in the Catholic Register from 2 years ago here;) as Deacon; a young and vivacious seminarian, Dryden Buote, currently in formation at the Seminary of St. Augustine`s in Toronto as our sub-deacon; the Master of Ceremonies was co-organizer for the Choir and head trainer for altar serving, Mr. Paul Mundra. Including myself, there was a total of five young men, dedicated to serving the extraordinary form of the Roman Rite, for last night`s Mass, in varying roles. I was 2nd Acolyte.

Prior to the actual Mass, fruitful and positive activity was going on in the sacristy and in setting up the altar. Prompt and proper setting up of the altar took place, and pleasantries and brief conversation took place getting to know our new friends and clergy/servers assisting the St. Patrick's Choir. I was particularly pleased to meet Dryden, having only seen him on friends`/group lists on Facebook. It's great to see another young man like myself with a positive disposition with an interest in this form of the Roman Rite, and gives me hope in the next generation of clergy for our archdiocese. It's these men, soon to be Reverend Father(s), like Dryden, who will bring out the full effects of ++Collins' archdiocesan pastoral plan and bear fruit to the New Evangelization.

Glad to say we eventually started our Mass at the proper time. While I was not permitted to take pictures of the actual liturgy (It`s the Holy Mass, not an entertainment spectacle), I was able to take a few shots of the altar setup prior to Mass.
Main Altar with New Framed Altar Cards for the Choir

Right Side of Altar showing the Sedilia

 Credence Table for Mass, Including Humeral Veil

The Mass began, and proceeded with beautiful, soul enriching music sung by our choir. I swear, they must be jumping by leaps and bounds every time, even their soloists. Because whomever sung the solo just before the reading of the Gospel had a voice so pure and so pristine singing the Gregorian Chant, that I swear I was in Heaven, even for just a few dear seconds.

Once we were seated post-Gospel, and the readings were read in English, announcements were made. An interesting point of note, is that today's liturgy involved three collect prayers to be spoken. The first was for the feast day of St. Joseph, as a Saint's feast day gets a collect devoted to them. The second was a collect for the Commemoration of the Coronation of new Holy Father, Pope Francis I. The final collect was specific for the season of Lent, being the Tuesday in Passion Week. One could say this was a triple blessing! A Feast Day, a Papal Coronation, and a Latin Mass! After, Fr. Steven proceeded to give one of the most awesome, superhero-powered homilies to date at St. Lawrence! And indeed it involved super heroes besides Fr. Steven himself!

Here`s the main points of his homily that I was able to remember:

  • Superhero movies are all the rage these Days. We`ve seen ones for Spiderman, Batman, and soon, Superman.
  • Super heroes are well adored because they have qualities, besides their powers, we admire: energetic  heroic, courageous, they fight evil, but most of all, they are self-sacrificing. In doing so, they are willing to take on many pains and sufferings in their heroism.
  • When we think of superheroes, our Catholic faith has many: The Saints. Many were courageous, self-sacrificing, truly good and loving, and even shared in some of Christ`s powers, particularly, miracles
  • Some saints are highly more valued than others. In our faith, of the most highest saints to be valued, the highest is the Blessed Virgin Mary. 
  • Mary`s sainthood encompasses the annunciation from the Angel Gabriel, where she accepting God`s Will to become the theotokos, the God-bearer, of Jesus Christ. Even after the birth of her son, Jesus, she borne many pains and sufferings of her Son to the end in carrying out God`s will. 
  • Even the Devil fears Mary so highly [besides God warning the devil that women will crush his head back with the Fall]. He is so prideful, so stubborn, he is sick of her, especially because he detests her humility, something he could never want to do.
  • Next to Mary, we should also consider that one of the biggest (and sadly, under appreciated  saints, is her Husband, St. Joseph.
  • St. Joseph is known for being the patron saints of carpentry, of vocations, those seeking marriage, even a happy death. 
  • Father then proceeded to tell the story of a beggar in a cabin somewhere, who prayed so earnestly to St. Joseph for his intercession before Death. A priest in the local village was summoned be an old man with a lantern to give last rites to a friend he knew. The old man guided the priest through a forest, to a clearing, and once there, the old disappeared and dropped his lantern, right in front of the priest's eyes. The priest came to the clearing to the resting shack for field/forest workers, where the beggar was on his last breaths. The priest gave last rites and confession to the beggar before his death, thanks to St. Joseph's intercession.
  • St. Joseph himself should also be considered like Mary in his sainthood, for doing the will of God, particularly when it wasn't his child and could have easily cast of Mary in his Jewish society. regardless he stood by her.
  • [My favourite point] St Joseph is a REAL MAN, a role model to look up to. Today's men are the "macho" type who give into a certain way of dress, action, and culture. However, most men are cowards, who flee when the going gets tough, or worse, act un-superhero-like and commit evil actions such as mis-treating women. St. Joseph was the complete opposite of today's "standard" of what a man should be.
  • St. Joseph could have easily disposed of his wife for "adultery" under Jewish Law, and yet he stood by her side [thanks to some encouragement from the angel in his dream] and did not abandon his wife for conceiving Christ. [Even after that, it could be easily assumed that he raised Christ under the Jewish Law, gave Christ circumcision, and raised him as his own, even teaching Christ the family trade of carpentry, and being the father figure in his life who gave him paternal love].
  • When we think of both Mary and Joseph, they were "superheroes" in the Saintly sense, in that they both chose the will of God, especially with regard to Christ, and like the ultimate superhero, Christ, fought against the devil's temptation and did not give in.
  • Going back to the superhero theme at the beginning of the talk, likewise, we should exemplify these real "superheroes," the saints of Mary, and especially Joseph given its his feast day, and like them, be those "superheroes" and emulate them in their Sainthood, but in addition pray to them and have them be our intercessors (the greatest possible intercessors) in doing the will of the Lord.

Save some minor errors on my part (oops.), the rest of the Mass proceeded smoothly, and accordingly with action.

After the Mass, a reception was held downstairs with some late night treats and coffee, graciously provided by the parish and the hard work of St. Lawrence Martyr's parishoners (with a little help making coffee from frequently mentioned veteran server, Robin Cheung.) Before everyone left the parish, we each were handed a beautiful prayer Card with the "Ite Ad Josef" prayer to the Holy Saint, blessed by Fr. Steven. This is a beautiful card with heavenly angels on the cover surrounding St. Joseph.

As an altar serving note, I met a young man who was interested in serving, whom I hope has ventured over here to Servimus. I do hope my posts will help you and give you a little "heads-up" before diving in. I created the "Starter Points" series for that purpose, to ease things for young boys/men interested in serving the Latin Mass so they are more comfortable.

All in all, another fine Mass was organized and carried out with much thanks to the St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir, the altar servers, and our three clergy. Special thanks is also given to Frs. Roy Farrell, Pastor, and Fr. Steven for allowing the St. Patrick`s Gregorian Choir to use St. Lawrence for the EF Mass.

On a final note, if any of you who attended the EF Mass, or know of anyone, and they, well, decided to sneak in some pictures of the liturgy, I would highly appreciate posting there here for the blog. Please send them to me as attachments to I will credit you by your real name or a pseudo-name.

The St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir is planning to have its next Mass, tentatively in June for the Feast of the Sacred Heart in the EF calendar, Friday June 7, 2013, at another parish in the GTA. When I have confirmed details as to where, when, and what time, I will of course highlight it on S.U.D. and add it to a listing of Spring-Early Summer listings for TLMs in the City.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin.

P.S. Just as a follow up to the altar rail post, while we did not get the pleasure of using them for this Mass, they are almost complete at St. Lawrence .....

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Recent Collection of Posts

Hello Everyone.

I've been a busy little bee these past few days, and released 4 posts that are likely off your blogger feeds. Here is my latest 4 posts of importance:

1) Solemn Latin Mass with St. Patrick's Gregorian Choir in Scarborough  and Novus Ordo Latin Mass in Richmond Hill for Today's Feast of St. Joseph -

2) Breaking News!!! Altar Rails are being installed at St. Lawrence the Martyr Parish

3) Reflection on Pope Francis using Novus Ordo Gospel for 5th Sunday OT as well as James Chapter 2, because I was sick of what was going around the blogospehere from some traditional Catholic Bloggers -

4) Reflection on an awesome retreat I went on with the Newman Center of U of T March 8-10. Please read this right after the Latin Mass post -

Oh, by the way, I have not forgotten about the Latin Mass Serving portion of this blog. Now with all this out of the way, I'll continue to work on the Cross and Boat Bearer posts and the 5th post for the part-by-part analysis of the EF Mass. That, and I'll try to get some pictures from the mass I'll be serving with St. Pat's choir tomorrow and think about writing a report in future about it.

Pax, Julian.

Reflection: March 8 -10 Retreat with the Newman Center at U of Toronto

Hello Everyone.

I guess you could say that this is a bit "Off the Beaten Path" as I usually call things that are only distantly or not at all related to what I usually post on S.U.D. However, I don't think this posts merits OTBP. It merits more.

Some of you who are frequent readers of this blog, or have been searching for the Newman Center at University of Toronto, might have remembered back in the new year I posted on the center in defense of my colleagues and friends with regard to them starting a Courage group. This post, will focus on a different aspect of their coverage: Their retreats for the young adults of the diocese of Toronto/University community.

This past weekend, March 8-10, I had the pleasure to get unpaid leave from work, and to attend a get-away retreat up in Port Colborne at Jericho House. This little retreat center, surrounded by wonderful Canadian forest trails and near Lake Erie, has been constructed fairly recently and combines a number of elements in its design of notice. You may examine it here at though as a warning, those of you who are on the far right side of traditional Catholicism, might end up ready to spear me for making you go there because some of the buzzwords you fear pop up. Just keep your thoughts to yourself, thank you.

In addition to being staffed by religious lay brothers and sisters, for one, at least my room, and likely others, had a shower in the bathroom that was wide with a bench in it, and not an enclosed cubicle with a step or barrier to get over. This is to accommodate senior or physically in-firmed retreatants (e.g. wheel-chair bound), a great extension of Catholic charity to the sick and in-firmed  In addition, there was a small office-cubicle size room that serves as the chapel. Inside of the chapel is the Blessed Sacrament on a table/pedestal in a modern designed, but small wooden, cube-shaped tabernacle with a candle and a Bible on a stand. When it comes to being up close and personal with our Lord, it does not get better than this (save Eucharistic Adoration and Benediction). And it's open 24-7! I must say I did take advantage of that chapel a couple of times, and it wasn't just me. On the Saturday morning, I even was able to squeeze in with a young couple who was saying the post-Vatican II Morning Office (not the Shorter Christian Prayer, we're talking 1 of the 4 full size books that clergy/religious read!). It was very warm to my heart to see myself and others, single or in a relationship, take full advantage of the chapel with Our Lord in the Tabernacle.

Now, I was quite excited to start off going on this retreat, because I was going to be with two of my closest Catholic friends from the Newman Center (who also run in similar circles with other friends). I'll say that, I got a lot more than I bargained for.

Friday Night March 8
The bus ride itself was somewhat interesting going up. Throughout the duration going up, there came about with me discussions with new students about their time at U of T/Newman, their experiences in the Christianity and Culture Program, and one particular young woman even engaged me when I mentioned my current job as a clerical clerk in labour and delivery at a downtown hospital (and my certification for laboratory testing). She asking me about the difficulty in carrying out my faith in a health care setting, along with some chiming in from another retreatant about what the drug Misoprostol is (dare I say it), with regard to abortions (short answer: contractions to expel the "contents/products of conception" out of the uterus). There was even a short 20 minute dinner stop along the way, where all the Lenten No-meat-on-Friday kids went crazy for meat and broke their sacrifices ... Just kidding ... well save one person .... :). At least now I know of her insatiable addiction for Wendy's(TM) Baconators and how to get her attention ...

When we arrived at the center, the main space was set up, ready to go. Half of the Newman team was already at the center, including the head of Student Chapliancy, Josh Canning, and the awesome priest governing the center through everything this year, Fr. Chris Cauchi. To get us in the mood for the retreat, the music ministry team started us off with praise and worship. Yes ... that music. Maybe I did one song to start off with but I wasn't really singing that stuff at this point, with my ``trad alert`` mode active in my mind.

Afterwards, the first talk was given by a well-known speaker acting in the archdiocese, Cale Clarke, who heads his own Catholic speaking initiative, He is also a pastoral associate at St. Justin Martyr, Unionville. Cale was invited to be the retreat's main speaker on the topic of Theology of the Body. This night's talk was more of a set up to the next day, giving background information on the inspiration behind John Paul II's phenomenal work on sex and relationships and vocations. Afterwards, it was social time. While hanging out in the games room (with two ping pong tables and a gettoni/foosball table), a number of us were engaging in conversations with each other on numerous topics, including the ongoing Conclave. As for me, I got the shocker of my night (and, well the retreat) when that intelligent young woman who picked my brain about my career(s), well, I can't remember how we initiated conversation, but eventually I got to the Latin Mass ... and to my surprise, I found a like minded soul. I couldn't believe this, but she clearly understands where I'm coming from spiritually and she even enjoys the Latin Mass! This blew me to bits. Someone, outside of my best male friend, and those of the Latin Mass communities, understands me and the Latin Mass ... (Big smile on my face on the inside...)

Saturday March 9
This was the biggest day of the Retreat. Much was planned outside of the main meals, including mid-day Mass, more of the talks, a scavenger hunt with  some recreation time, and a capstone in the evening. After breakfast was an ice-breaker game, and then the second of the two talks for the TOB, where the focus was on the meaning of ``vocation`` with marriage.

Talk 2 - Morning
After giving us some Scriptural Background about marriage in the Bible as well as the Creation Story (following along John Paul`s 3 key areas of the TOB), of the most important points of the talk that hit me were brought up with regard to pornography:

  • Pornography takes from the viewer and participants, willing the death of their soul. Women become mere objects. 
  • Elementary school kids now are becoming exposed to pornography (much thanks to the Internet). It`s not just finding dad or uncle Jimmy`s stash of magazines with the bunny on it anymore. Worse, they are even talking about their escapades and what they see with each other. 
  • Only Christ can set us free from the grips of Pornography. He is the new Adam that succeeded where he failed. 
Really? A retreat in a Novus Ordo culture with praise and worship, and we are getting smacked in the face with grim evils of pornography? Who would have thought that!

Mass occurred in the Novus Ordo form of the Roman rite with Fr. Cauchi being the celebrant. Two of the retreatants were picked as lectors, and one of the Newman students club members was the altar server. Interesting to note, she proceeded with her hands in the orans position in the entrance and exit procession and bowed with the priest upon arrival and exit to/from the altar. While I forget the duration of the homily, I do know that the Sacrament of Reconciliation was encouraged. Further, Fr. Cauchi talked about the powerful witness to the Catholic Faith of a male Saint in World War II, Fr. Maximillian Kolbe, This was an excellent example that tied well together with the retreat. Aside from being part of a sex-segregated talk for the male retreatants, it also reinforced the wholeness and sacrifice needed, both to the witness of the faith, but also from the perspective of the  prisoner, whose place Fr. Kolbe took in Auschwitz in a literal decimation of those in his cell block for punishment of three escapees from the camp. See, Fr. Kolbe purposely took the place of this prisoner, hearing his cries for his wife and family. This man was so devoted to his family, and scared of leaving them. That's how much he loved his family and was committed to them. Fr. Kolbe, hearing this, offered himself up, stating he was an old Polish Catholic priest. Even the ruthless and unmerciful commander Fritzch, took a moment of pause and actually relented and accepted the switch. What this meant was to show all of us about sacrifice for the faith, as well as total commitment to the vocations of both ordained and married life, and in general, Catholic life. Be ready and willing to sacrifice yourself for the faith.

Shortly afterward was our next meal, a scavenger hunt, and a couple hours free time, and then we were split into sex-segregated groups for discussion lead by the Newman Retreat teams. These talks were to focus on the saints of St. Maxmillian Kolbe and St. Kateri Katwaitha, their devotion to their faith, but most importantly, their martyrdom and sacrifice. Likewise, we will be called to do the same in our Catholic faith, both vocation-wise, and as witness to the Lord (possibly, even a white or "red" martyrdom with the way the world is going). We then had the next talk by Cale.

Talk 3: Vocations 1 - Theology of the Body
Of the major points I got out of this talk, 

  • One should treat their vocation with absolute love, like that of Christ. Christ's love for his bride is wholly faithful and truthful. His love for us is freely given. 
  • During the Mass, this ultimate love is exemplified in the consecration of the Eucharist and Blood. For the Eucharist, it is the pivotal moment, when the priest says, "This is MY Body" or in Latin "Hoc Est Meim Corpus". By the way, Cale used the Latin phrase in the talk. 
  • Vocations are where our happiness is found. A Vocation is a particular way to love in the image of God. The Vocation, be it marriage, priesthood, or consecrated singlehood/a single life devoted to Christ is how we carry this out. 
  • The vocation of the priesthood is viewed generally by people, even "catholics" as "not natural." It should be viewed as "supernatural". 
  • The Mass, regardless of rite or form, is HEAVEN ON EARTH!!!! It is such a Mortal Sin to Miss Mass (That's right, Cale said it was a Mortal Sin. No joke.) It is a foretaste of heaven, the eternal wedding banquet. An analogy is when a married couple go to the hall to sample the full menu for their reception. 
  • This is a big one: Both marriage and Holy Orders depend on each other. When we fail to have families and be fruitful and multiply in a loving, practicing Catholic home, we do not have young men who will fulfill the vocation to the Priesthood. Likewise, should our Holy Priests FAIL in their governance of us, not practice true teaching of the faith and spiritually nourish us, there will be no vocations generated out of their lack of spiritual rearing. In addition, the family is the "domestic Church" which teaches the child to learn how to love [editorial note: not to mention prepares them for wider service for the Institutional and True Catholic Church)

I'd tell you the rest, but it would spoil you in case you get the chance to hear Cale Talk on TOB in future. He's even got some cool apologetics from Scripture with regard to vocations. Dinner was served, followed by the final talk of the retreat.

Talk 4 - Vocations 2/Contraception's violation of the Vocation of marriage
The take home points (or stuff I liked):

  • People sadly misunderstand what marriage means as a Sacrament in the Church. They think that God guarantees the marital relationship in marriage. This is wrong. The Sacrament is what provides spiritual tools (graces) to achieve the relationship, but the couple must utilize these tools and be receptive to graces from the Sacrament. 
  • Contraception is not just the pill we are used to. It also includes many other types of products, chemical, barriers, even medical procedures like hystorectomies (for non-medical reasons) and vasectomies. 
  • The Sin of Onan is in Genesis 38:8-10. He was basically the oldest example of the ``withdraw`` method, that is, taking your member out before ejaculation and spewing the contents elsewhere [editorial note: God killed him. He takes offenses against life pretty seriously eh?]
  • Contraceptive chemicals are contained in the Bible. Revelations 21 initially has "sorcerers" who will go to Hell with others, including fornicators in the NRSV-CE translation of the Bible. The "magic arts" of sorcerers concerns potion making, and the Greek work for "magic" is pharmacia. Pharmacies take that as the root word. They made abortificients/sterility potions. 
  • Contraception doesn't abort the baby or kill it, it changes the hormonal balance (and thus uterine lining) to prevent implantation in the uterus or gamete conception. It does NOT 100% guarantee a birth will be prevented. Further, numerous side effects/complications can occur in women, such as noted increases in breast and cervical cancers, strokes, blood clots, embolisms (from clots), increased depression and weight gain, even permanent sterility, and in rare cases, death. 
  • Cale referenced the "dreaded" encyclical of Pope Paul VI, Humanae Vitae, which hammers at abortion and contraception, and the four consequences he warned about which would follow  widespread use. Go see the encyclical HERE!
  • Contraception is sexual bulimia. 

Wow. A couple of people in the audience knew about this already because they work with pro-life organizations, but this was mostly new to me, and likely everyone else.

After this talk, we had one of the most beautiful and solemn devotions of the Faith outside of the Mass: Eucharistic Adoration. Fr. Cauchi and a visiting priest came to administer the Sacrament of reconciliation, as well as give spiritual counselling when needed. I say when needed, because the combination of the actual adoration in front of our Lord, and the prior talks and events of the retreat, had stirred up emotions and spiritual issues in some of the participants. Some of them needed quite a bit of time with our reverend Fathers, which in my opinion, is a good sign of the Sacrament of Reconciliation combined with being present with our Lord. Some sins/issues are deeper than others.

Regardless it was truly a blessing to see us collectively taking deep stock of ourselves, whether it be on the issues of the retreat, or others in our lives/our sins, and pouring ourselves/our concerns  out to the Lord, be it tears, or our vocal and mental prayers. Overall, more lower key/tempo selections of the praise and worship music team were selected for this occasion, interspersed with silence, to accommodate everyone so they may maximally devote themselves to our Lord (e.g. some people are introspective, and thinkers, who value silence to pray with our Lord [like me, an ISTJ according to Meyers-Briggs,] others value emotional and extroverted actions and feelings and pray via the P&W songs to commune with the Lord [that would be E_F_'s in Myers-Briggs].) Regardless, this was something that could only be witnessed if you were there .... 48 young adults worshiping our Lord in front of the Blessed Sacrament. But before you launch the "trad" cannon of detraction at the choice of accompanying music, do not fret. The traditional worship hymns such as Tantum Ergo, O Salutaris Hostia, Holy God we Praise Thy Name, and the Divine Praises, were part of the Adoration & Benedictions, as traditionally sung and said.  

Sunday March 10
The rest of the day as followed:

  • Wake up, Breakfast
  • Reflections on our retreat with the Newman Center
  • Sunday Morning Obligation Mass, where I, and my friend (that young intellectual) were lectors for the Mass. Another thing to mention, a number of us, dressed up for it. Not necessarily a suit and tie, but we were not wearing our pajamas or casuals. Josh Canning even wore a tie :). I did, and so did my friend, and even my roommates.  
  • Lunch
  • Bus ride back to Toronto.

Clearly, this was an exceptional experience for myself as a retreatant. The Newman Center under the guise of Josh Canning and Fr. Cauchi is a much needed breath of fresh air in a hostile area (university) and culture, so anti-Catholic in form and in ideology. They put on an awesome retreat with their team, and clearly gave us much to think about. 

As for everyone else, I would like to highlight an important point out of this account. Not all, but some people who are attracted to the Latin Mass, or attend, partake in the Latin Mass only, as well as limit themselves to conservative media of all types, and possibly even shun anything "Novus Ordo". 

I would like to state that while it is good in a sense to isolate yourself from all things spiritually damaging, just because much damage has been done post Vatican II in the institutional Church, does not mean that things are grim for the future of us. Despite what you read on numerous other blogs, there are still signs of hope for our generation, even within the "Novus Ordo" culture. 

Personally, I commit to my Novus Ordo home parish as a lector and a pastoral council member, and have started doing Grade 10 Social Justice (yeah that's right. That thing that Jesus did a lot.) retreats with the parish associated with my Latin Mass Choir. Just because there is much that needs to be realigned in the "Novus Ordo Culture," are we to shun our Catholic brothers and sisters who, like the tree in the Gospel for the Novus Ordo First Sunday of Lent (Year C), haven't "borne the fruit" we do spiritually? No. It`s not ``No salvation outside the Latin Mass.`` Likewise, there is much youth leadership lacking in the Catholic Church. That is why I participate in these activities, and even shed my trad-iness at times, because, via my leadership, I hope to encourage others to help themselves spiritually, and maybe even discover the Latin Mass (usually, when I mention my blog). They will have to make the choice themselves, but nonetheless, witnessing to others is still important, especially peer witness among the youth. That's what brought me to my reversion in a youth ministry at my former Novus Ordo parish. 

So when I have mentioned much about the accounts and signs I witnessed in this retreat, it is to show you that despite the "praise and worship" music used or the whole ``Novus Ordo`` thing more strict trads get hooked on, there are STILL signs of hope for the future of the Church, and my generation with the Faith. Just take this retreat for instance: The young couple, sharing a beautiful moment of their love for each other and for Christ in the chapel while praying the Modern FULL Breviary, the young intellectual I met with a passion for traditional Catholic worship, the bulk of us being exposed to critical messages with regard to serious sexual sins of pornography and contraception, the coming to critical junctures and reflection in our lives on our vocations, the 48 of us youth in front of the Blessed Sacrament in Adoration .... all this, really showed me, and hopefully yourselves in my recollection, that there is still much hope and holiness by the youth in the modern ``Novus Ordo Church,`` and I am glad to partake in some part of it, and not confine myself to pure Latin Mass/Traditional Catholicism. 

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin

P.S. To the young intellectual, (you know who you are), being a Latin Mass attendee of similar spirit, while  not an server, I am open to contributions to the blog considering it covers Latin Mass serving (main focus) and Latin Mass related issues in the archdiocese (secondary focus). You are more than welcome to contribute too, and of course, all contributions will be credited. 

Monday, 18 March 2013

Breaking News! Altar Rails at SLTM coming to Fruition ...

Hello Everyone.

Thanks to the pastoral dream team of Fr. Roy Farrell and Fr. Steven Szakaczki of St. Lawrence the Martyr, bit by bit, the physical parish is rising up with regards to following "Lex orandi, Lex credendi." Although this Church was never devastated internally/externally into the architectural eyesores devoid of sacredness and beauty post mis-application of Vatican II, it did lose a few items in the process. One of them was the altar rails that surrounded the sanctuary.

Here`s a colour Photo of the original Sanctuary with the Altar Rails.

Today, most of those original elements still stay intact. This includes the stone backing with the Crucific, the actual altar, the Pulpit, the left and right alcoves with the statues (in their original paint colours), etc.

However as of this week or the last, as planned and was announced in the bulletin, ......... the building of the new altar rails has COMMENCED!!!!!!! Hat tip to Robin Cheung, veteran server and frequently mentioned here on S.U.D. for the picture. Here`s what he had to say on Facebook (abridged by me for the important parts:

Robin L. M. Cheung
Follow · 6 hours ago
+amgD Call it Grace--Fr. S didn't lie when he said the.Communion Rail would be delayed until next week--... these Workmen-- ... showed up and announced they wee here to begin installation...

And so, without further ado, the first picture for the new altar rails! (Cue music, ``O Fortuna``)

Unfortunately, I do not think they will be ready tomorrow for the St. Patrick`s Gregorian Choir Solemn Latin Mass, for the Feast of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary. Maybe they will be ready for the Triduum?

Pax, Julian.

Reminder: Latin Masses in both Forms OF and EF in Diocese for St. Joseph the Husband of Mary

Hello Everyone,

I am reminding you that tomorrow is the Blessed Feast Day of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary in both the Ordinary Form and Extraordinary Form calendars. You should attend Mass for this feast day, especially given that there are two major liturgies happening in the Roman Rite to celebrate this day, aside from the normal times at the Latin Mass parishes.

West (North) End of the City: Richmond Hill

In the North End of the Diocese, there will be a Novus Ordo Sung Latin Mass at St. Mary Immaculate in Richmond Hill. Details are laid out in full here with a poster at the WITNESS blogsite:

Glad to say I have a friend who is attending this Mass as this is her home parish. She definitely will be enjoying this one, especially with the Choir from Our Lady Seat of Wisdom Academy, a private Catholic post-Secondary college in Barry`s Bay, Ontario.


As stated before, there is a Solemn Latin Mass occurring in the diocese on Tuesday, March 19, 2013 at 7pm. The Mass is at St. Lawrence the Martyr Catholic Church, 2210 Lawrence Avenue East, Scarborough, Ontario. 

The Mass is being organized by the St. Patrick`s Gregorian Choir, led by Choirmaster Surinder S. Mundra.

The Latin Mass Chaplain of the parish, Fr. Steven Szakaczki, will be the main celebrant, as I confirmed this with him. I will be serving in one of the acolyte roles, so I will be there in person.

For those of you with Facebook, the event page is here:!/events/378024458971281/. Please promote this event via your Facebook page, or by word of mouth.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian Barkin.

Reflection: For Pope Francis

Hello everyone,

It seems as if the criticism of out Holy Father is still on-going. While the left/liberal side of the Church may not be happy at out pro-life, doctrinally strong Pope, they haven't been launching as large a barrage of detracting posts and articles. They have started their own war march against the Pontificate and will likely increase over time, as mused by Fr. John Zulhsdorf here at WDTPRS.

Unfortunately, the assaults continue on the Internet from those who should be serving better example and character as Traditional Catholics. They might look like fraternal concern, but are truly stinging barbs aimed at our Papa disguised in passive-aggressive language. This "rad-trad" Catholicism only contributes to the Devil's works, corrupting others and yielding spiritual/psychological damage that wounds the Faithful during, or persisting into one's adult years, and also angers other "glad-trads"/Traditional Catholics in the process, because whether we are with you or not, we suffer the consequences of your actions. This is disturbing me quite much as a young adult EF server. Thus I would like to offer a reflection for my readers, and anyone else reading this blog not regularly.

Before I begin, a disclaimer: I am not a member with Holy Orders and not a wielder of the Magisterium. What I say is not to be construed as Magisterial teaching, not spiritual counsel to undertake. Rather it is a reflection using a Scriptural passage with regard to the current situation on then Internet, similar to what one does in Lectio Divina and/or scriptural self-study. Besides, God's Word is timeless and applies
to all generations, till the end of time.

I would like to start by offering up a part of Paul's letter to James. This is a highly recognizable passage from Paul's Epistles, on the need for faith and works to be absolutely joined at the hip in a Catholic`s life. I have emphasized certain passages here because I will be referring to them in my reflection when commentating on the slamfest on the Internet:

NRSV-CE, James 2:1-26

``1 My brethren, show no partiality as you hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. 
2 For if a man with gold rings and in fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, 
3 and you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, "Have a seat here, please," while you say to the poor man, "Stand there," or, "Sit at my feet," 
4 have you not made distinctions among yourselves, and become judges with evil thoughts? 
5 Listen, my beloved brethren. Has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which he has promised to those who love him? 
6 But you have dishonored the poor man. Is it not the rich who oppress you, is it not they who drag you into court? 
7 Is it not they who blaspheme that honorable name which was invoked over you? 
8 If you really fulfil the royal law, according to the scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself," you do well
9 But if you show partiality, you commit sin, and are convicted by the law as transgressors. 
10 For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it
11 For he who said, "Do not commit adultery," said also, "Do not kill." If you do not commit adultery but do kill, you have become a transgressor of the law. 
12 So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty. 
13 For judgment is without mercy to one who has shown no mercy; yet mercy triumphs over judgment. 
14 What does it profit, my brethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him? 
15 If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, 
16 and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? 
17 So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead. 
18 But some one will say, "You have faith and I have works." Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith. 
19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe -- and shudder. 
20 Do you want to be shown, you shallow man, that faith apart from works is barren? 
21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he offered his son Isaac upon the altar? 
22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by works
23 and the scripture was fulfilled which says, "Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness"; and he was called the friend of God. 
24 You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone
25 And in the same way was not also Rahab the harlot justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way? 
26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so faith apart from works is dead. ------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Furthermore, for those of us who attended the Novus Ordo Mass for our Sunday Obligation, the Gospel was from John 8:1-11, telling of the account of the woman accused of adultery, with the famous line about `He who does not sin, may cast the first stone.`

I particularly want to delve further on the well-known faith and works part of the first passage and connect it to the Gospel, as it regards what is being said of our Holy Father and the sad things being said about him on the Internet.

Briefly, Faith and Works Needed Together

As one can tell from the passage, faith without works is dead, and likewise vice versa. When we carry out our faith without works, our faith is simply shallow and skin-deep. It is a hypocrisy, which can easily be exemplified in the Catholic who goes to Mass every Sunday, but acts like a jerk to their family, friends, and co-workers the other 6 days, in addition to dissenting from central Catholic teachings. As ++Collins, two years ago told to me in his Lectio Divina, particularly for James 2:10-14: ``One cannot be selective in how we practice our Catholic Faith. We must live the lives of integrity, not double lives.`` Further, look at verse 8. We are ASKED to love our neighbour (not tolerate, that`s different from true love of our neighbour). Even Christ says this as the second most important commandment, when asked by someone about what the most important ones are. If you just have faith and do not carry out those acts of love, then clearly Paul says this is not true example of the faith.

Likewise, if we stick to works alone, these will also not suffice enough, though Paul seems to emphasize the works more than the faith in this passage. Think about it. People who aren`t religious or are secular, can do charitable works. But are they REALLY doing something worthwhile? So great, you make a kid feel good, or help someone out, and you get a high doing something. Thing is, without faith, what are those works amounting too besides warm fuzzy feelings? Is there even a purpose or reason to those works??? It is faith that is intertwined with works, because those works then have an ultimate purpose, our eternal salvation. And our lives have an eternal purpose and are means to an ultimate, eternally lasting end: The Summum Bonum, the Greatest Good, which is God. Paul expresses this well in the last sentence, comparing faith and works to the body and the soul.

Pope Francis and Trad Catholics Online

Now, let's explore the passage from James further with regard to Pope Francis I and the wonderful hoopla with himself thanks to the Traditional Catholic quarter of "rad-trads". Remember: Faith without works is dead.

When one thinks about our faith as a traditional Catholic, it is the most easiest part for those of the EF. We believe everything that Christ taught us, we don't contracept, we don't abort our pre-born children, we have large families, we go to confession and confess all our sins, etc. Now one might say, "Hey those are works, so we're covered!"   Well, those are spiritual works, and yes, you might pat yourself on the back like the Pharisee, but this is where the works part starts to lack. Works do not just entail what surrounds your prayer life and liturgical practices only, it also includes your online and personal decorum with those you interact with, your thoughts about those people, and your treatment of them. Further, it also includes physical works, such as working at homeless shelters, donating more than average to a Cathoilc charity that is doctrinally sound, or even just being friendly and courteous to that neighbour who hates that you go to Church.

Now, remember this line from scripture above: "10  For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it." Well, as of late, it seems even our Holy Father's demonstration of actually putting St. Paul's advice to James in practice, is being scoffed at as "false humility" on the internet, and are serving him "humble pie" by giving him better ways he can be "humble". In addition, much mud is being smeared at the Holy Father because he wasn't the biggest proponent of the Latin Mass back in Buenos Aires, or didn't govern those in charge well enough not to turn it into a Latin Novus Ordo. And the line of scripture: Well, A traditional Catholic can go to the EF Mass, say his/her prayers, go to confession, obey the doctrines and dogmas of Christ's Church, even volunteer at that soup kitchen/homeless shelter, and even talk to that neighbour. But see above how even one act is failure? That's right. Those traditional Catholics who decided to take to the Internet and slag mud, or provide that "humble pie", have not understood the concept of this Epistle in Scripture, nor our Holy Father's humility. Well I must defend our Holy Father. 

Pope Francis I is choosing to do exactly what the Lord had commanded, not to be attached to Mammon, or wealth. He chose to carry out in action, not to live in splendor, not to waste expensive gas and harm the environment by having no car/chauffeur, and took public transit with everyone else. One could also see the Holy Father's example, in comparison to how Christ ate with sinners, tax collectors, the sick, etc. He put himself to the people and didn't elevate himself, just because of his status in the Church. 

When you look around the world, what do you see? Rock stars and celebrities living in lavish "cribs" with granite and stone bathrooms, drinking and eating expensive foods, wearing the hottest "brand" labels, doing advertisements for money for those "brand" labels, and even doing the most radical things and behaviours, even when Christian (e.g. Miley Cyrus). When you see someone like that, isn't your natural inclination to scream, "hypocrite"? 

And what about certain priests and prelates? Throughout the Church's history, how many times (including scanning the internet) have we heard about priests and higher clergy living and dining like kings, living in nice "cribs", financially taking from parishes, and being a counter example to the Lord when he wants us to obey God and not Mammon? I believe there once was a priest from an order called SOLT, which traditional Catholics liked, particularly in Canada, because he came down hard on the Winnipeg Statement and was a fire and brimstone, old-school type preacher. And, did he not have a million dollar house and nice car and apparently, bodyguards? Where is he now? Was he truly an example of humility, as our holy Father was? 

Now, when we think of this, and when I see Trad Catholics slamming him for his (possible) lack of attention to the EF, or someone who suggests his humility is not being properly carried out, I cannot help but feel sorry for our Holy Father for this onslaught of insult, especially from the right, where we should truly be the Pope's most loyal guards and supporters in these troubled times. Were he living in his nice fancy quarters back in Buenos Aires with a bunch of servants, and travelling in his car in a developed country still experiencing a certain level of poverty where even fewer people have the standard of living he, what would we say then? Would we be saying "look, he's a hypocrite." or "Look, it's the anti-Christ in the Papacy" or "what a Liberal Pope!" Hypocrite? Hold on, did I not just say that with regard to the rock stars and celebrities? 

And so we return to our Novus Ordo Gospel, with the woman accused of adultery. Let he who has not sinned, cast the first stone. Clearly, we all must improve in our humility and even in our Holiness. I bet that many of us, barely even scrape the surface in action, faith, and deed to Pope Francis, when over his life he has done so much and led by example to carry out what is said in James 2. So how about that the onslaughts cease with regard to our Holy Father, we pray for the Holy Spirit to guide him in his Papacy, and for him never to lose that humble humility which he has shown by example, even if he isn't a devotee/fan of the EF? And may we all try to truly show the world, especially us youth, that we are "glad-trads", not "rad-trads," taking after His Holiness by example.

Finally, when you think of how he has humbled himself practically in Buenos Aires, and even at the Vatican, is it no surprise that he chose Francis, after St. Francis of Assisi, founder of the Franciscans? Of whom the Franciscans are supposed to wear mostly their brown simple robes, sandals, and to live humbly "in the world, but not of it?" Well I say, the Pope, based on the Order of St. Francis and how they process in this world, is true to his Papal namesake.

Pax Tibi Christi, Julian