Sunday, December 31, 2006

A Happy New Year filled with blessings to our readers

The Seminarians would like to wish all their readers here on Orthfully Catholic a very holy and blessed New Year 2007.
We hope that it will be a year of growing closer to Christ and His Most Blessed Mother.
With prayers,
The Seminarians

Monday, December 25, 2006


A parish near me decided to have adoration everyday during Advent. What a wonderful way to prepare for the great feast of Christmas! There are many new communities who have regular if not perpetual adoration. Praise God. I have noticed, however, that most of them are female orders. I'm not complaining, least of all for "sexist" reasons. But wouldn't it be great if there were more orders of men/priests?

Let us pray for the founding of new orders dedicated to the Eucharist, Our Lady and Holy Mother Church. Maybe God might raise up new communities even in pagan old Britain! Let us pray to the New Born King of the Harvest for this intention.
God bless.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas

Orthfully Catholic would like to wish their readers a very Happy and Holy Christmas.
May the new born Christ bless you all and His Holy Mother guide and protect you this Christmas and always.
God Bless
The Seminarians

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

The Trouble with Atheists

Did anyone see this programme on Channel 4 the other evening. I only caught the last 15/20 minutes of it but was able to see Richard Dawkins talk about the religious meme. Apparently our fear of death causes us to have a meme which helps us to cope by telling us we live on after death. The best bit though was when the presenter asked if there was a connection between atheism and serial killing giving the examples of Stalin, Hitler and Chairman Mao. One 'Professor' said Stalin wasn't an atheist because he was Confucian (sp?) and Dawkins said it was pure coincidence. How do these people get their chairs? The trouble with atheists is they don't have one brain cell between them!

Monday, December 18, 2006

Christianity lives on!

Yesterday something quite beautiful happened that I would like to share with you. During the holidays I go to one of two parish bases 40-50 miles away from eachother and just before the evening Mass the priest called me saying there was a lady in the church who had been waiting to see me for two hours. I went in to the church and there was a lady from the other parish who had promised me a copy of St Faustina's Diary the last time I saw her. She had come to visit her sister in a nearby parish and realising I must be on holiday brought the book, she came to the church to see what time the next Mass was, waited at the convent across the road and then came over to give the book to me! How lovely is that?

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Don't use the 'V' word

A primary school in Lancashire is in the tabloids today (I don't read the tabloids it was brought to my attention by a parishioner) because the Head banned the use of the phrase 'Virgin Mary' in the nativity play as it will offend the Muslims.
This is the final proof that all this 'don't offend the Muslims' stuff is the work of atheistic political correctness because the Muslims can't be offended by the word 'Virgin' due to the fact that Islam is just as dependent on the Virgin birth as Christianity is!
One Catholic MP said, 'Apparently they are afraid of offending Muslims but have offended Christians.' I'm sure you can guess who this is, she is our hero at any time Catholicism and Christianity are publicly slandered!
What with this and the distinct lack of any religious imagery in public this Christmas (The 12 Days of Chav-mas, the shepherds getting high on dope and seeing the angels as a result and 1 in 100 cards having a religious theme to it) the world is going down the pan! My Grandmother's right we should have two days, Christ-Mass on 25th December and Winterval somewhere else!


As I'm sure all readers of Orthfully Catholic know, after the Council parishes all over England and Wales suffered a re-ordering of one kind or another. Well now I think the same is happening again but this time they are being re-ordered to the way they once were! I have just been speaking to a priest who has plans for his parish.
He is going to put up an Adoration Chapel, this is becoming more and more popular in parishes and is doing them a lot of good! People are coming in and spending hours on their knees adoring Our Lord exposed in the Blessed Sacrament and their families and their parishes are feeling the effects of it, the lapsed are coming back and vocations are booming.
He has just put up a sanctuary crucifix which was taken down by the last Parish Priest. He wants to move the Tabernacle from the 'fashionable' Blessed Sacrament Chapel to the sanctuary. He is unsure where to put the Font, I suggested the entrance where Canon Law says it should be but he says he is aware of people not being able to see the baptisms from that position comfortably so he would rather put it between the sanctuary and first pew.
A lot more has to be done but he is making a start!


I am one of the founding members of Orthfully Catholic and as yet haven't posted anything because, unlike some of my brothers, I have been extremely busy this term. I am on holiday now so can share some insights with you!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

I'm going into the desert today to prepare for the coming of the Lord. Alas I can't tell you where I'm going as that would remove my anonymity, but it is a very special place, and I will pray especially for all blog readers there. Please keep me also in your prayers, that it may be a fruitful retreat in which I welcome Christ ever more deeply into my heart. Obviously I won't be using computers, so won't be posting again until my return, which will be at Epiphany. In the meantime, the rest of the team will continue to keep the blog exciting!

Life giving family

There is a new link in our list. Lacrimarum Valle is the blog of a young Catholic couple who, I think, are truly remarkable. Despite all the pressures of being young they are about to have their first child soon. On the blog there is a wonderful testimony by father-to-be Matthew Doyle. It speaks of the wonderful conversion that he and his wife had to the Church's teaching on contraception. It just goes to show that young people CAN live according to the moral teachings of the Church. Their marriage will have its ups and downs like any other. BUT they are being generous enough with God and have decided that their love will be open to life as God sees fit.
There are many marriages which can learn alot from them. Please do visit their blog if you have any questions.

And a big THANK YOU to Matt and Wendy Doyle for their witness to life and Holy Mother Church's teachings. And remember that if you have any boys we need more priests! There's plenty of room for them here in the Seminary!
All the best with the new arrival.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Good news from France

The BBC has a story on the erection of a new 29ft statue of Pope John Paul the Great that has been put up in the town of Ploermel. This is an initiative of the mayor of Ploermel which has rather delightfully hacked off various secularists, particularly as the official opening was originally due on the hundredth anniversary of the French separation of Church and State.

I'm quite stuck by the exciting things that are being done by French mayors. I think this is in part because of the stronger Catholic culture, and partly because of the greater executive power that they hold.

The mayor of Paray-le-Monial, for example, recently used a large chunk of public funds to completely renovate the Basilica and the Eucharistic Museum (the Eucharistic Museum incidentally is truly fabulous, and had been closed for a number of years - well worth a visit if you go to Paray). All this gets done in the name of safeguarding cultural heritage, thus not technically violating the separation of church and state.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Heretical hymns

I was talking to one of the other Orthfully Catholic contributors today about the dilemma of heretical hymns and what to do about singing them. He said that if he spots the heresy in time and can think of an alternative, he changes the wording, and if not, he simply doesn't sing it. I think that's quite sensible really. Of course the ideal would really be if someone were to issue a hymn book with an imprimatur...

Saturday, December 09, 2006

The joy of Contemplation

I've just been watching Into Great Silence again, which has made me think about the particular quality of joy found among contemplatives.

I have the great privilege of spending time with an eremitical community. We meet to share a meal at which we speak three Sundays a month. I'm always struck by the way the conversation has a great profundity, but at the same time a tremendous joy and lightness, with much laughter.

The shared silence draws us into a much deeper communion than if we had spoken to each other all week. Every word that is spoken matters: it is weighed carefully before being spoken and listened to with the attentiveness of people who spend most of their time listening to God.

One of the books that has profoundly influenced me is Max Picard's The World of Silence. He talks extensively of the difference between the silence of man and the silence of God. It is in prayer that the two come into contact. He writes:

"Elsewhere, outside prayer, the silence of man is fulfilled and receives its meaning in speech. But in prayer it receives its meaning and fulfilment in the meeting with the silence of God.

Elsewhere, outside prayer, the silence in man serves the word in man. But now, in prayer, the word serves the silence in man: the word leads the human silence to the silence of God."

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Letting God impact!

I am reading a book on St. John of the Cross called Impact of God by Iain Matthew. It is absolutely brilliant and I heartily recommend it to anyone who wishes to learn about St. John of the Cross' teachings on prayer. It has made me realise that what we need in the Church is contemplatives. Not just in the monasteries (which, of course, is crucial) but in the world. Basically put Impact of God tells us that St. John of the Cross teaches that mystical prayer is for all. God wishes to give that freely given gift. We just have to open our nothingness up (nada) and God will fill it. Let God have an impact in His Holy Temples, our sinful souls!
God bless

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Legion of Mary

Someone left a comment on a previous post about the Legion of Mary, which has inspired me to write a bit about them. I had the great privilege of being acting spiritual director to a praesidium for a year. This really helped me to see two things; firstly the amazing fruitfulness of legionary work, and secondly to enter deeply into the spirituality which generates this fruitfulness. The legion does tremendous work for evangelisation - I am convinced that they are key to the New Evangelisation in this country. I want to write more about the legion spirituality, but am a bit too sleepy to do it justice tonight so will keep it for another post...

Please pray for the Canonisation of Frank Duff:

God our Father, You inspired your servant Frank Duff with a profound insight into the mystery of Your Church, the Body of Christ, and of the place of Mary the Mother of Jesus in this mystery.
In his immense desire to share this insight with others and in filial dependence on Mary he formed her Legion to be a sign of her maternal love for the world and a means of enlisting all her children in the Church's evangelising work.
We thank you Father for the graces conferred on him and for the benefits accruing to the Church from his courageous and shining faith. With confidence we beg You that through his intercession you grant the petition we lay before You . ............... We ask too that if it be in accordance with Your will, the holiness of his life may be acknowledged by the Church for the glory of your Name, through Christ Our Lord,

Monday, December 04, 2006

Orthfully Catholic Exclusive

Some exciting news: readers of Orthfully Catholic can have an exclusive preview of the new biography of one of the most inspiring figures in the Church in the twentieth century. We can let you have (for free!) a couple of chapters of this book, written by the postulator for their cause. If you're interested, email us at and we'll send you the chapters by email.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

First Sunday of Advent

The Virgin, weighed
With the Word of God,
Comes down the road:
If only you'll shelter her.

- St John of the Cross

For the benefit of a reader who's not originally from the UK:

Del verbo divino
La Virgen preñada
Viene de camino
Si le dais posada.

- San Juan de la Cruz

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Catholic-Mormon dialogue

I was approached by a Mormon in the street who asked if I had a couple of minutes. I said yes, so we had the following conversation:

Mormon: Tell me, do you have any religious beliefs at all?

Gildas: Well, yes, actually; I'm training to be a Roman Catholic Priest.

Mormon (having taken a step backwards): Oh...that's interesting. Have you ever wondered why there are so many different denominations in Christianity?

Gildas: Yes, I find it so sad that they've all broken away from the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church founded by Jesus Christ and continued in the unbroken Apostolic Succession to our current Pope.

Mormon rather feebly counters by querying the succession from Peter to Linas. Gildas quotes Irenaeus. Interesting discussion ensues on the authority of scripture and tradition, infant baptism and Mormon beliefs on the Holy Spirit. Mormon eventually gives up on attempt to convert Gildas.