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Sacred Beauty Volume 14 | June 2015

Sacra Liturgia NYC Regina Magazine


Editorial Editor

Beverly De Soto

Webmaster Jim Bryant


Donna Sue Berry Meghan Ferrara Michael Durnan Ed Masters Beverly De Soto Joseph Shaw Matthew Reid Martinho Correia Peter De Trolio III

Special Thanks


Sacra Liturgia USA Latin Mass Society of England & Wales Sacred Art School, Florence Angel Academy, Florence The Bethlehem Priory of St. Joseph The Monks of Norcia

Harry Stevens Beverly De Soto Arrys Ortanez Stuart Chessman Amy Proctor Chris Zaointz Studios Christa Taylor Lety Jaramillo Joseph Shaw Sequoia Sierra Robb Manary Hannah Gustin

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Designer Helen Stead

Volume 14 | Sacred Beauty REGINA MAGAZINE is published six times a year at Our Blog can be found at REGINA draws together extraordinary Catholic writers, photographers, videographers and artists with a vibrant faith. We’re interested in everything under the Catholic sun — from work and family to religious and eternal life. We seek the Good, the Beautiful and the True – in our Tradition and with our God-given Reason. We believe in one, holy, Catholic and apostolic Church. We are joyfully loyal to the Magisterium. We proudly celebrate our literary and artistic heritage and seek to live and teach the authentic Faith. We are grateful for this treasure laid up for us for two thousand years by the Church — in her liturgy, her clergy, her great gift of Christendom and the Catholic culture that we are the primary bearers of. REGINA MAGAZINE is under the patronage of Our Lady, Mary Most Holy. We pray that she lays our humble work at the feet of her Son, and that His Will be done. 2

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Contents 46

Gregorian Chant

Sacra Liturgia........................................................................ 04 How Catholics Got Their Chant Back.................................46 Isn’t Chant Too Hard?...........................................................60

Catholic Bride


God’s Creation Through Amy’s Lens..................................72 A Catholic Bride..................................................................104 Modern Millennial Medievalists........................................130 Who Needs Men in Church...............................................152 NYPD Catholic.....................................................................160


10 Years in Training.............................................................170 The Heart of a Catholic Artist............................................200 Beauty That Can Save the World......................................210 The New Avant Garde........................................................224

Saint Rocco

Art in the Service of the Church........................................240 Fontgombault Abbey.........................................................256


God Through Amy’s Lens

Behind Convent Walls........................................................266 Sacramental Sensibility......................................................278 Eyewitness: Pilgrimage in York, England.........................292 Corpus Christi in Germany................................................310 Saint Rocco..........................................................................326

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Splendor in the City Sacra Liturgia USA in New York City Photo Credits: Arrys Ortanez & Stuart Chessman

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“THE PURPOSE OF SACRA LITURGIA IS TO PROMOTE IN AN ACTIVE WAY THE LITURGICAL REFORM THAT IS SO SORELY NEEDED IN THE CHURCH, through intellect -- the papers presented at the Conference -- and through the beauty of holiness as reflected in the liturgical celebrations.” Fr Richard Cipolla, St Mary’s Parish, Norwalk CT (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman)


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“ALL OF THE SOLEMN HIGH MASSES WERE SUPERB thanks to the musical direction of David Hughes. The polyphony during the Corpus Christi High Mass brought tears to my eyes.” Joanne O’Beirne, NYC (Here with the Schola Dominicana of the Church of St. Catherine of Siena and the Schola Cantorum of St. Mary Church, Norwalk, CT. in a photo by Stuart Chessman)

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RAYMOND CARDINAL BURKE IN THE CAPPA MAGNA (Latin for "great cape"), an ecclesiastical vestment worn by cardinals of the Church. It is worn only outside of Rome, in circumstances of very special solemnity. (ยง 12 1969 Instruction on the Dress, Titles and Coats-ofarms of Cardinals, Bishops and Lesser Prelates) Photo credit: Stuart Chessman


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THE VESPERS ON THE FIRST EVENING, AND EACH OF THE MASSES were powerful examples of what good liturgy should look like.” Fr Richard Cipolla (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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“THE ATTENDANCE WAS VERY GOOD INDEED. I was very happy about the number of priests and seminarians who came to the Conference, some from as far away as England. “ Fr Richard Cipolla (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman)

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MOST REVEREND JOSEPH PERRY, Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago, was the celebrant at the splendid Corpus Christi Solemn Pontifical High Mass. (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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“AUXILIARY BISHOP JOHN O’HARA’S (Staten Island, NY) sermon was the best preaching I have heard in many years.” Matt Menendez , Founder, Juventutem Boston (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)

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“ IT WAS QUITE HUMBLING FOR ME TO BE ABLE TO OFFER REFLECTIONS ON BEAUTY IN THE MASS TO THOSE ON WHOM I RELY FOR THE MASS. Writing this paper was very different from any other paper that I have written, in that, as I was writing it, I thought of it as a gift that I might offer to those who offer themselves as Personae Christi. It was a great joy and honor to be able to do so.” Dr Margaret Hughes (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman) 16

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“IT WAS HEARTENING TO SEE SO MANY LAY PEOPLE THERE OF ALL AGES. The papers presented were varied in content and tone, but all were of fine quality and showed a strong ecclesial sense. “ Fr Richard Cipolla (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman)

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"I BELIEVE THAT IT IS PRECISELY A PROPER UNDERSTANDING OF LITURGY THAT CAN OFFER HEALING to the schizophrenia in our culture." – From ‘Liturgical Leadership in a Secular Society: A Bishop’s Perspective’ lecture by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, San Francisco (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman)


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“I ADDRESSED THE TOPIC OF YOUTH AND THE LITURGY. I was amazed at the reception. As a young man with no ecclesiastical appointment, I was, Praise God!, able to frankly address today’s crisis in the liturgy. I believe so many people are used to having to pretend that everything is just fine, a topic Fr. Cipolla discussed in his talk on positivism. They were refreshed to hear another view. I saw so many old friends, and met plenty of new ones.” Matt Menendez (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman)


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“FOR HIS LISTENERS, HE PUT A GALE FORCE WIND INTO OUR TRADITIONALIST SAILS: I was riveted by the talk given by Matt Menendez, founder of Juventutem Boston. His talk, ‘Youth and the Liturgy’ was lively and sprinkled with humorous commentary, interrupted by several rounds of applause. Juventutem represents the most exciting youth movement in the Church today and it’s sprouting up all over the country. They really do represent the New Evangelization. To hear such an engaging, intelligent (Harvard graduate) young man promote his faith in an articulate and clear fashion was most heartening.” Daniel Marengo, NYC (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman) 22

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“IT WAS A HIGH PRIVILEGE TO OFFER ONE OF THE CONFERENCE MASSES AT SACRA LITURGIA--NEW YORK. . I was ordained for only a little over a week and was humbled to be able to offer Holy Mass for all the participants of the conference--bishops, abbots, priests and such devoted lay faithful. I thought my being trusted with such a Mass was a beautiful testament to the youthfulness of the burgeoning traditional movement as well to the understanding we Catholics have of the priesthood--whether young or old, experienced or not, at the altar the priest is Christ offering for all present His Sacrifice to the Father.” – Fr Sean Connolly

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“WHEN THE HOLY FATHER, POPE FRANCIS, ASKED ME TO ACCEPT the ministry of Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, I asked: ‘Your Holiness, how do you want me to exercise this ministry?’ The Holy Father’s reply was clear. ‘I want you to continue to implement the liturgical reform of the Second Vatican Council,’ he said ‘and I want you to continue the good work in the liturgy begun by Pope Benedict XVI.’ - From the Letter to Sacra Liturgia, by Cardinal Sarah (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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“IT WAS INCREDIBLY WELL ATTENDED. I had been at the original Sacra Liturgia in 2013 in Rome and the crowd here was especially lively since there were so many more Americans, whereas the previous conference was in English, Spanish, Italian, French, and German.” – Matt Menendez


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“I HAVE LIVED IN NYC ALL MY LIFE and never participated in such an outward Eucharistic procession of this kind. All of NYC, including the police, pedestrians and the stunned commercial and residential onlookers from the buildings along the way, watched in awe and silent wondering as the canopied Blessed Sacrament meandered its way through the cavernous streets, touching the lives of countless secular and hard bitten New Yorkers.� Daniel Marengo, NYC

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“THERE WERE SEVERAL THINGS THAT STRUCK ME: the first is the silence of those in the procession - we were all united in adoration of Christ, so that there was almost no talking and everyone was intent on following the Blessed Sacrament; the second is the stillness of those on the sidewalks - while New Yorkers almost never stop, people stood still on the sidewalks and watched the procession. I did not see anyone try to push through the procession to cross the street, as they might have a parade. It seemed that everyone recognized that there was something special here, even if they did not know exactly what it was; the third, is the kindness of the participants in the procession towards each other.� Dr Margaret Hughes (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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“HEARING THOSE HUNDREDS OF VOICES SING “JESUS, MY LORD, MY GOD, MY ALL,” WHILE COMING UP 66TH STREET was other-worldly as it bounced off the concrete walls of the canyon. But the kicker was an NYPD officer that was part of the traffic detail. He said to me, “Do you realize the peace you’ve brought here?” He pointed to the way people were stopped and taking it all in. He was impressed and genuinely moved.” – Bill Riccio, Jr. (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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“ANOTHER SURPRISE WAS HOW DIVERSE THE PARTICIPANTS in the conference were. As is to be expected, many of the participants were young seminarians and priests. But the attendance was by no means limited to them. I met so many people - younger and older, men and women, laymen and in orders or religious life - all bound together by a love of Christ, especially as expressed in the Liturgy. “ Dr Margaret Hughes (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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“THE PROCESSION WAS MAGICAL. WE CLEARLY NEED MORE OF THOSE. Stopping traffic on 1st, 2nd, 3rd Ave — amazing! It almost felt like this “new evangelization” one hears about from time to time. Everyone stopped still to watch the procession with smiles on their faces. Most people took photos and one woman took a video of us. Doormen came outside of their buildings to watch. The police blocked the traffic and no one even honked their horns. The NYPD were very supportive and told us to "stay safe". There was a feeling of peace and serenity. We transformed the streets of Manhattan to holy ground as we sang ‘Jesus, my Lord, my God, my All’ in a candlelight procession.” Joanne O’Beirne (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)


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Sacra Liturgia

“I WAS PRESENT FOR THE PROCESSION, AND IT WAS INCREDIBLY SPIRITUALLY FULFILLING. The New Yorkers were very respectful. No one interrupted or taunted us, and many prayed in silence. The beauty was overwhelming, and it echoed a story Cardinal Burke told earlier in the week about offering a Solemn Pontifical High Mass in the more ancient rite for homeless people in Spain, and how well received it was. The poor, whether spiritually or materially, can become rich through their participation in the traditional liturgy of Holy Mother Church.” -- Matt Melendez (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)

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“NO MATTER HOW TALENTED THE PHOTOGRAPHERS, IT’S IMPOSSIBLE FOR STILL IMAGES to convey the breadth and importance of this event. Every New York bystander we encountered was either intently watching or photographing or recording the Corpus Christi Procession. The Lord of Lord and King of Kings still commands reverence when he is taken to the streets. St John Neumann ora pro nobis.” Society of St Dominic, Winnepeg, Canada “IMAGINE SEEING DOZENS UPON DOZENS OF YOUNG MEN AND PRIESTS, IN SURPLICES AND BIRETTAS, WOMEN WITH VEILS, BABIES AND YOUNG CHILDREN, all singing and chanting Latin and English hymns, marching through the canyons of NYC. It was a spectacular and priceless experience.” Daniel Marengo, NYC (PHOTO CREDIT: Arrys Ortanez)

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“PEOPLE IN THE STREETS JUST STOPPED IN WONDERMENT as a Rome-like procession made its way through the city blocks. As the procession entered St. Vincent's, tears literally starting to form --just in awe of everything. I have no other words to say about that night and I have no doubt that Christ did touch the heart of at least one wayward soul." -- Arrys Ortanez REGINA: As ​the international coordinator of Sacra Liturgia and the person responsible for all the liturgical celebrations in NYC, what is your assessment of the New York conference? DOM ALCUIN REID: It was, I think, a singular moment of grace, as it brought together in Catholic unity and in communion with the Holy Father and the local bishop many prelates, scholars, clergy, religious and lay men and women for whom a deeper appreciation of the Sacred Liturgy, academically and in practice, is fundamental to all of the Christian life and our mission in the world. That the participants were noticeably young and enthusiastic is a great sign of hope, a true ‘sign of the times’. REGINA: Did the enthusiasm of the participants surprise you? Hearten you? DOM ALCUIN REID: There was a similar, if more international, enthusiasm present at Sacra Liturgia 2013 in Rome. But yes, it was most heartening. So too was the beautiful message sent


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Sacra Liturgia

by His Eminence, Robert Cardinal Sarah, Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and Discipline of the Sacraments, in which he most humbly asked our help in his own liturgical mission. That message is worth reading and rereading. REGINA:What was going through your mind as you were processing through the Upper East Side in that Corpus Christi procession?  DOM ALCUIN REID: I’m afraid I was unashamedly very, very happy. So many people gave so much to ensure that the preparation and organisation of the practical, academic and liturgical elements of the conference were first class, but in the Corpus Christi procession there we all were, walking, singing, adoring and witnessing in the streets of New York City. The Sacred Liturgy, indeed He Who is at work in the Sacred Liturgy, was celebrated as beautifully and as reverently as possible. That procession touched many hearts that Thursday evening – those of us who worked to bring it about, the conference participants, local parishioners, as well as bystanders and people in the apartments above. That will bring its fruit. It was also moment of profound liturgical formation for the many young priests and seminarians who participated. We could not have asked for a more moving or a more fitting end to the conference. REGINA: What do you think most participants took away from their experience of the conference? DOM ALCUIN REID: Much hope, please God. Hope and confidence – that beautiful, God-centred liturgy, liturgy that is truly sacred, truly beautiful, is very much alive and at the heart of our Catholic life. Confidence also that at the academic level sound work continues to address the larger questions, particularly those of elements of liturgical reforms in the twentieth century that went somewhat off-track. I have to say that it was rather disappointing that one new media outlet who reported on the conference does not seem to have grasped the inner meaning, spiritually or academically, of what we are about, or indeed the importance of getting the worship of God right, externally and internally, for Christian life. Sadly their report seemed to obsess over dress and externals – which concerns seem very dated and superficial!

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“MY BEST MEMORY OF THE CONFERENCE IS CERTAINLY THE MASSES THEMSELVES. The care and love which with they were celebrated made manifest the reality that the Mass is “the source and summit of the Christian life.” After all the talking about Liturgy during the day, it was a relief, in the best possible sense, to do what we had been talking about. At the end of the day, what matters is not what we say about the Mass, but that we pray the Mass as well as possible.” - Dr. Margaret Hughes (PHOTO CREDIT: Stuart Chessman) 40

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“MY BEST MEMORY, WHICH I INCLUDED IN MY PARISH HOMILY ON SUNDAY, was the remarkable procession on Corpus Christ through the streets of the upper east side of Manhattan. I have talked to many participants about this, and they all agree that it was a truly spiritual event that amazed and silenced the normally frenetic and prolix denizens of this part of Manhattan. It was a true witness to the Truth and Beauty of the person of Christ and the Catholic faith.” – Father Richard Cipolla


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Falling in love with REGINA is like falling in love with Catholic Traditi Click HERE to subscribe FREE. 44

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How Catholics Got Their Chant Back Article By:

Peter De Trolio III

Photo Credit:

Harry Stevens, Beverly De Soto & Michael Durnan


nce upon a time as a very young man, I heard Plain Chant. It was during the 1980s, that period of guitars and pop music erroneously and enthusiastically interjected into the liturgy. My revelation came due to the work of a Monk of St. Anselm´s Abbey in Washington, D.C. Dom Urban Schnauz sang the Novus Ordo Mass in Latin on Sundays at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. I had the privilege of being one of his altar boys while studying at Catholic University. Dom Urban had also organized a Schola at the Abbey; my friends and I would often join the Monks for Mass and Vespers just to listen to them chant.

What a magnificent sound, we thought. We’d assumed that Chant had fallen into complete disuse, but miraculously there were some, like the dear, holy Dom Urban, who kept it alive. He taught us the basics of square notes and how to sing the responses appropriate to altar boys.

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How Catholics Got Their Chant Back

UNBEKNOWNST TO US, Plain Chant - also known as ‘Gregorian’ Chant – was and is nothing les the 1400-year old ancient voice of the Church. Dating from the 6th century, it takes its name from St. Gregory the Great, who instituted it into the liturgy. Over the centuries, Chant – like everythin Church -- has seen corruption and reform, but through the millennia it remained Catholics’ princ praying in music in the Church. This, until the Second Vatican Council, when other music began chant within the liturgy -- despite the Council’s express statement that ‘The Church acknowledge rian chant as specially suited to the Roman ... All other things being equal, Gregorian chant holds place because it is proper to the Roman Liturgy. 1


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ss than m Pope ng in the cipal way of to replace es Gregos pride of

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IMBUED WITH AN ENTHUSIASM KNOWN AS THE ‘SPIRIT’ OF VATICAN II, in the decades following the Council, liturgists and prelates all but banished chant, until in 1994 something shocking happened. The monks of Silos, a monastery near Burgos, Spain, became internationally famous with their album Chant. Astonishingly, Chant peaked at #3 on the Billboard 200, and was certified as triple platinum, becoming the best-selling album of Gregorian chant ever released. Suddenly, the monks’ chant reached a huge global audience, and by the mid1990s a few in the Church had begun to question the status quo. Even more interest was aroused in 2000, when the documents of the Second Vatican Council became globally available on the Vatican website. To the question, ‘Why had this ethereal treasure of the Church been banished?’ there came no official answer. Only the Council Fathers’ own statement resonated through the years, clear as a bell.


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AS IN SILOS, Catholic Chant survived to the extent that it was preserved in monasteries and convents throughout the west -- out of which it comes back to us today. It is a numerically-based type of music represented by square notes of specific time value but chant does not need any musical instruments to sustain it, so it can be sung with or without accompaniment. It is all done through the voice. 52

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FAST FORWARD THREE DECADES AND DESPITE EVERY ATTEMPT TO KILL IT, Chant today is making an unmistakable global comeback. Scholas are being organized in universities and parishes throughout the West. Conferences such as those organized in America by the Church Music Association are drawing ever-more participants. And while most Catholics will have some experience of chant tonality in the haunting music of the Salve Regina or the Tantum Ergo, most have no idea that the entire body of chant is their birthright – an inestimable treasure handed down for centuries from those who came before us. 54

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To better understand this growing phenomenon, REGINA Magazine traveled to England, where thanks to the hard work of the Latin Mass Society and others, chant in Catholic churches is once again beginning to be heard. One Englishman who is experienced and leads chant and is involved in Priest Training is Michael Forbester. Our other interviewee is a beginner, Michael Durnan.


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How Catholics Got Their Chant Back

REGINA: How long have you been involved and what has generally been your role? Mike Forbester: I've been involved with the priest training since the first Conference at Ushaw College in 2009. I principally serve as Chant Director, but before we even get to that stage, the work has to be done in preparation for all the scheduled public services, indeed which services (mainly from the Divine office in addition to daily Mass) that we're going to have. Copies are then prepared for all singers, our Organist and also a spare copy for whoever is Celebrant/Officiant, so we all know what's going on! I've also prepared the Orders of Service for all the participants. Michael Durnan: At the end of September 2014, the Institute of Christ The Sovereign King took over the pastoral care of St. Walburge’s Catholic Parish Church in Preston at the invitation of the Bishop of Lancaster. St. Walburge’s was merged with parish church of Sacred Heart a few years ago but I had attended mass frequently at St. Walburge’s, as both churches are quite near to where I live. I had never sung Gregorian chant or any other Latin liturgical chant before and had not sung in a choir since I was a pupil at school. I enjoy singing and being a former Primary School teacher, I had done singing with the children in music lessons. REGINA: What changes have you seen over the years? Mike Forbester: As more and more priests have been attending (I think it’s well over 100 now) the emphasis has changed, certainly over the last three years from not just training clergy, but also beginning to train servers at the same time. This has usually been done in separate classes, but occasionally can take place simultaneously with the priest training. REGINA: What brought you to Chant in the first place? Michael Durnan: I had heard of Gregorian chant and I already owned some CDs of church choirs singing

chant. I also had some CDs of The Byzantine Rite Liturgy sung by the Russian Orthodox choir of the Cathedral in London. In my younger days as an undergraduate at University of Bristol, I had come across Taize chants such as Adoremus te Domine, Veni Sancte Spiritus and Ubi Caritias et Amore whilst attending The University Catholic Chaplaincy. I had also comes across the use of Taize chants in some Ordinary Form parish masses after leaving university and one friend in a Catholic Social group I’m involved with, used to organise a prayer group which featured the use of Taize chants. REGINA: How did you come to find Chant near where you live? Michael Durnan: The Rector of The Shrine, Canon Altiere, had put up posters and made leaflets available at the back of church inviting people to become involved in the liturgical and social life of The Shrine. They were looking for volunteers for a polyphonic plain chant choir and so I put my name forward. When I started in the choir at St. Walburge’s, I found I was the only complete novice as most of the others had experience of singing chant at the TLM. Many of the choir members had been singing together at the Lancaster Diocese Cathedral – St. Walburge’s in the in the diocese. Many of the more experienced choir members already had their own copies of The Parish Book of Chant and some had their own copies of Libera Usualis. REGINA: What kinds of questions and concerns do priests new to the TLM generally have? Mike Forbester: Oh Lord, I’m not sure I’m the right person to answer this! One thing though that can definitely be emphasised to dissuade any apprehension is that priests do NOT have to know and understand the Latin language, they just have to be reasonably proficient in saying it. Tuition in this, is of course offered, so if any clergy reading this who would love to learn the Traditional Mass but thought they couldn’t because of lack of knowledge of the language, please don’t let that put you off attending!

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“One of the things I often found very disappointing and discouraging at times when attending The Ordinary Form Mass, was the choice of the music at mass. Generally, the Mass itself isn’t sung, but instead four hymns from the entrance to the recessional hymn with an offertory hymn and communion hymn in between. The hymns themselves I often found uninspiring, banal and even cringe-worthy. “Singing chant has certainly enhanced my experience of The Mass and its significance. Chant adds great beauty and depth to The Mass and makes it an even more profound spiritual experience. Singing the Traditional Latin Mass using chant makes it longer in duration, but I don’t begrudge spending 90 minutes in church each Sunday because the whole experience has such as great beauty and depth. “ -- Michael Durnan


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How Catholics Got Their Chant Back

“It's lovely to hear from people, both clergy and laity, that our efforts have been appreciated, particularly as some of them may never have experienced chant & polyphony as it was meant to be performed until attending one of the Training Conferences.”

REGINA: What have been your main joys and challenges? Mike Forbester: My first & biggest challenge, was certainly preparing services from the Divine Office, that I’d never even been to, never mind having to actually prepare editions for both singers and congregation! At the time of the first Ushaw Conference, I only had in my possession, a Liber Usualis, which of course is fine for most Masses & occasional services from the Divine Office, but it doesn’t give you everything, particularly Lauds, so I had to learn very quickly. I would go so far as to say the learning curve was so steep that it felt like I was bending over backwards! These days, I’m in possession, thanks to various online sources, of virtually everything I could wish for, so preparation for all the public services is nothing like as stressful! The reward for all this hard work though, is to bring to fruition, a week’s services that had their origin on my humble desktop PC (although the original liturgical books are much older than that!) and to be able to take my own part in striving to ensure they are the best we can offer in the worship of almighty God. It’s the reason my schola and choir exists. There are several who record CD’s and perform concerts, but very few of these actually attempt to put such music back where it belongs, in the heart of the Sacred Liturgy. Michael Durnan: For myself, it’s been a steep learning curve as I have to come Latin chant as a complete novice, but having more experienced and proficient choir members around me and with the leadership of Abbe Chaptal, I have gradually become more confident with, and competent at, my singing. Whilst I can sing in tune and have a reasonably powerful voice, there have been many challenges along the way. I have found singing chant to be very rewarding and spiritually uplifting. The singing of chant enhances the liturgy and adds to its beauty.

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FATHER BASIL NIXEN IS THE CHOIRMASTER of the Benedictines at Norcia, Italy. Their chant CD is now #1 Best-seller at Barnes &Noble in the US as well as debut #1 Classical Traditional on this week’s Billboard Chart, #1 Classical Amazon US and #1 Classical iTunes US. Nevertheless, Fr Nixen demonstrated great patience and answered some pretty elementary questions from REGINA Magazine this week – all about chant. 60 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty Photo Credits: Christopher McLallen


Chant too hard?” And Other Outlandish Questions For the Monks of Norcia Interview By:

REGINA Magazine

REGINA: The Monks of Norcia chant sounds very otherworldly and beautiful. Is it a prayer? Fr. Basil Nixen: The chant is without a doubt a prayer! The fathers would say bis orat qui bene cantat, that is, he who sings well prays twice. REGINA: What kind of prayer? Fr. Basil Nixen: One of the preferred means of monastic prayer is lectio divina, the careful and meditative reading of the Scriptures. This kind of prayer is a sort of dialogue: we read the sacred text but then after reflecting on what it says we turn to God and pray. St. Jerome says that when we read, God speaks to us, when we pray, we speak to Him. REGINA: So is chant an ancient prayer? Fr. Basil Nixen: yes, I think that Gregorian Chant is inspired precisely because it was written in this climate of Lectio Divina. The sacred chants are the response of someone meditating on the Word of God. They are the result of this prayerful dialogue in which the Scriptures penetrate the heart. This is why these melodies have an otherworldly character. Singing them or listening to them transports us to the climate of prayer in which they were inspired and composed.

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REGINA: Do you have to be an accomplished singer to sing chant? Fr. Basil Nixen: One does not have to be an accomplished singer to sing chant. Certainly it helps to have a pleasant voice and some basic knowledge about singing. But no expertise is required...what is required, and what must come across in singing it, is a deep reverence for the chant borne of religious conviction, this makes the chant come alive and makes it something totally beyond a museum piece or simply an aesthetically pleasing piece of music. Photo Credits: Christopher Owens

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“We rise early for the same reason, to praise God in the midst of the night, not only because it is fitting that He be praised at all hours of the day and night, but in a special way to ask mercy for the world and to pray for all those who suffer during the night.” – Fr. Basil Nixen REGINA: Do you find it confining to only have to sing chant? Fr. Basil Nixen: I must admit that years ago when I first entered the monastery I did find it confining to sing exclusively chant. At times I yearned for the rich harmony of polyphony or Eastern chant and even looked at Gregorian Chant as lacking something due to its monophonic character. And I can see how somebody might feel like this. But now I certainly do not feel like this. Now, after ten years or so of a diet of liturgical prayer consisting exclusively of it, I’ve come to experience the richness and depth inherent in Gregorian Chant and I see its monophonic character as a jewel-- certainly not as a defect. It just takes time for it to sink in. Our musical palate has to become accustomed to it. I think that as with all fine things in life, and above all with prayer itself, Gregorian Chant is an acquired taste.


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Photo Credits: Charles Kinnane

REGINA: Is it true you get up in the middle of the night to chant? Why? Fr. Basil Nixen: The ancient monks used to get up in the middle of the night to sing the Psalms. They did this because in the Psalms themselves the prophet says to God media nocte surgebam ad confitendum tibi, that is, I rose at midnight to praise you. So they got up in the night to praise God in imitation of the psalmist, but after their prayer was finished they went back to sleep. St. Benedict modified things a bit and required his monks to get up very early, towards the end of the night so to speak, but to stay awake afterwards, not to go back to bed. As Benedictines we follow this latter practice and thus rise at 3:40 a.m. for our first prayer at 4:00 which is chanted in the Church (on Sundays and feast days we rise 20 minutes earlier). REGINA: Are your monks Italian? Did your monks know Latin before they entered? Fr. Basil Nixen: Most of the monks in our community are not Italian. We come from all parts of the world, about half of us from the United States. Most of us knew some Latin before we entered but there are a few who have had to learn it here. But this does not pose too great a problem because the language is easier to learn due to the fact that we pray in it and thus use it very frequently.

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Founding prior, Father Cassian Folsom, O.S.B. Photo Credits: Charles Kinnane 66

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REGINA: Really? So you are praying for people who are suffering in the night? Fr. Basil Nixen: It is during the night that some of the most terrible things happen--people are killed, lives are damaged through violence or drug abuse or other addictions, and many people despair amidst so many sufferings. At that moment we try to bring some balance to the world and thus counter this suffering through the praise of God, asking Him to pour out His peace on the world.

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“IT IS NOT EXCESSIVELY DIFFICULT TO LEARN THE AMOUNT OF LATIN OR CHANT NECESSARY IN ORDER TO PRAY AS A MONK IN OUR COMMUNITY. Certainly they both require discipline and study, and as with anything, mastery of these subjects requires much dedication and labor. For Latin this means continually learning new vocabulary or delving deeper into the complexities of the grammar. For chant this means studying the pieces from a theoretical point of view to see the richness they contain. It means getting to know the chants like familiar friends, knowing their complexity and beauty. I remember as a novice applying myself to this kind of study of the chants for hours on end. I am grateful for that study because now I feel that I know the musical language of the chant almost as well as the languages I speak. “ -- Fr. Basil Nixen Photo Credits: Charles Kinnane


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God’s Creation Through Amy’s Lens By Donna Sue Berry Photos by


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Amy Proctor is a Catholic who loves the traditions of the Faith. And what a life she leads -- not only a wife and mother, but a world traveler, writer and photographer. 74

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As a photojournalist, Amy weaves her stories together with her beautiful photos. Her work has been featured on CNN and National Geographic online, and she contributes to newspapers around America.


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“I was born and raised Catholic. My father is an artist. From him I learned the art of watercolors and photography. I've been married for 27 years; we have four wonderful children. My work has been to photograph God's amazing creation in America, New Zealand and Asia.�

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“God’s creation speaks to His greatness and His existence, and I would love to be able to convert everyone I come in contact with by pointing this out.” 80

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“When the breeze rushes across the aqua waters of Havasu Falls in the Grand Canyon, I feel God speaking to me, assuring me of His love and care. For ME! Undeserving me.� 82

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“I definitely see Him as an artist and Creator and I am so emotionally moved to see the sun rise over the buttes at Monument Valley, with their dramatic colors and formations that could only have been created

by God and His great flood.�

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“I feel like a privileged child with the blessing of her royal Father, being allowed to show the outside world the splendors that rest inside the hallowed walls of His kingdom, and I want to share it with everyone.� 86

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“And yet I get to know HIM myself, even though the sun rises for everyone who sees it through my photographs.� 88

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“We've always been active in the Catholic community but in 2011 a rather sacrilegious priest led us to say ‘No more!’”

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“We started traveling an hour each way every Sunday to a Latin Mass at the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Savannah, Georgia. That’s where I began to take images of the cathedral and to document the Latin Mass there.”

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“Our whole family fell in love with the Latin Mass and it has changed our lives, especially the life of my 22 year old daughter who is now considering religious life.�

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“I see my vocation as twofold: informative and therapeutic. By showcasing God’s amazing handiwork I have been able to point young families in the right direction so they can create amazing memories together, while at the same time satisfying my own awe of God.” 96

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“So it's not about nature; it's about a Creator who shows Himself. It’s about the parallel between the beauty of the way He loves to be worshipped in Tradition by His people and the way the earth itself worships Him through the turning of the leaves and the crashing of the waves.”

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“When a storm comes, scary as it may be, we are reminded of His sovereignty and might. Then as the rainbow shines in the aftermath, we are reminded of His forgiveness and mercy.�

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Find Amy Proctor online!

Blog: Website:

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A Catholic Bride Six Beautiful Brides On Why A Catholic Marriage is Different Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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SISTERS SUSAN AND ELIZABETH TOFFLER prepare for their double wedding in Portland, Oregon. “We believe Catholic marriage is a way to unite the human with the Divine; we are cooperating with God's Will for our lives.” Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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“A CATHOLIC MARRIAGE IS DIFFERENT BECAUSE IT IS A SACRAMENT. It is an ‘outward sign, instituted by Christ, to give Grace’ as long as we are willing and able to receive and cooperate with that Grace. We like how Scott Hahn points out that, unlike a contract, a covenant is not an exchange of goods, but rather an exchange of persons--body and soul.” -- Susan Willis Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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Angela & John Married May, 24, 2014 Feast of Our Lady Help of Christians

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“WE REALLY WANTED OUR FAITH TO BE EVIDENT. We made a conscious effort to incorporate symbols of our Faith and practices into our wedding ceremony and preparations, not just for the Mass portion. During the Mass, we each carried special rosaries with our flower bouquets, and Elizabeth carried a small crucifix that belonged to our mom.� Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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A Catholic Bride

“BEFORE THE MASS, THE BRIDESMAIDS, GROOMSMEN AND OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS GATHERED WITH US to pray for and with us in our upcoming Sacrament--to give us the courage to live it out, and in thanksgiving for all our blessings.” Elizabeth Tarries Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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ARRIVING FOR THEIR NUPTIALS: The evening before, both brides spent time after the rehearsal dinner with family and friends in an hour of praise and worship before the Blessed Sacrament at one of their Parish churches.

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WITH 100-YEAR OLD DOMINICAN FATHER DUFFNER: “Some good friends of ours had prayer cards made to put at each place setting at the reception as favors for our guests-we hope it is not only a pretty card (has a beautiful image of the Betrothal of Mary and Joseph on the front), but is also a reminder to our friends and family to keep us (Susan & Aidan and Elizabeth & Dave) and our marriages in their prayers.� Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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“I AM FROM NAIROBI, KENYA AND MY HUSBAND IS FROM ST. LOUIS PARK, MINNESOTA. I AM SO GRATEFUL THAT I WAITED FOR HIM and hope that this is the beginning of great things for both of us, spiritually, physically and emotionally. I am so happy to be married to my best friend and every day is a learning process. “—Catherine Daoust Photo Credits: Robb Manary

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“The difference about how i view marriage as opposed to how many people in my generation do is that i consider it eternal. Other people -- I have friends who are almost turning to divorce -- consider it temporal and think it only works if they are happy, otherwise they can just walk out and move on.” “A Catholic marriage is a path through which I and my husband will grow into full maturity on both a human and spiritual level. It is also a way of holiness and it gives grace. It is an indissoluble covenant between two baptized people and God. It is meant to last forever. “ - Catherine & Andrew Daoust

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“A Catholic marriage is so much more than a contract. It’s a means for grace and a path to holiness. When we take our vows in September, we’re not only vowing ‘to have and to hold’ etc, etc, until ‘death do us part,’ we’re vowing to do what it takes to keep the other person on a path toward to heaven.” “How is our idea of marriage different from our peers? For starters... we want kids. And by kids, I mean get out the old bench seat in the back of the station wagon kind of marriage. So we both have an openness to babies - either biological or adopted. I know so many newlywed couples who want to wait and wait and wait and wait to have kids.” – Lucy Mc Vicker

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“My parents taught us to not settle for whichever ‘Mr. who we think may be right’ and to keep praying for who it is we were supposed to marry, should that be our vocation. My dad once told me, ‘You're my princess. A man needs to treat you like it or he's not worth it.’ He wasn't referring to treating me like I was the Queen of Sheba, to be waited on and worshipped but to be held in the dignity that I deserved as a child of God. It resonated and it's been a beautiful witness to see my dad treat my mom as such.” – Lucy Mc Vicker

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“Many wait and are on hormonal contraceptives for so long that it makes it difficult to conceive once they're ‘ready.’ That's not to say that the only purpose of marriage is to beget children but there's a very real perversion with how marriage is viewed.” Photo Credits: Christa Taylor

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A Catholic Bride

“OUR HIGH NUPTIAL MASS was celebrated at St. Jude Thaddeus Church in Pharr, Texas, in deep South Texas, only ten miles from the Mexican border. Our parish nun, Sister Estela, was very excited and during marriage preparation classes told couples about the beauty and reverence of the Latin Mass. “ Dorothy Mc Fall Photo Credits: Leta Jaramillo

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“WE DID HAVE SOME GUESTS WHO REFUSED TO WEAR THEIR VEILS and simply did not place it on their heads, nor those of their daughters. In addition, I was asked ‘why only women’ and ‘what do the men wear’ or ‘why don’t men cover their heads.’”

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“I WANTED VEILS FOR ALL FEMALE GUESTS but since we couldn’t afford to purchase 200 veils, I made them myself. The majority of our guests were very respectful, possibly because it was prefaced by several months of explaining to the female guests, or their spouses, that the tradition of modesty and head covering was important to us.”

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Photo Credits: Lety Jaramillo

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“OUR MASS SPARKED A LARGE INTEREST IN THE EXTRAORDINARY FORM; my Catholic colleagues had never been to a Latin Mass and asked questions about the veiling, music, language and had interest in the Mass times. We donated the extra veils to the parish, so visitors on Sundays can wear veils. I still see many of our guests wearing their veils at Mass!” “Most often we heard ‘it was such a beautiful Mass’ while others simply said they ‘had never seen anything like it.’– Theodore & Dorothy Mc Fall 124 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

Photo Credits: Lety Jaramillo

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A Catholic Bride

“AS CATHOLICS WE APPROACH MARRIAGE AS AN EXTREMELY SERIOUS MATTER - death do us part, then the responsibility that comes from every action we do to and for each other. Our choice to practice the Faith as a base and Natural Family Planning to support it is countercultural to everything society is today.” – Samantha Brenneman Photo Credits: Hannah Gustin/Hannah Rae Photography

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“WITH THE SACRAMENT, WE HAVE THE SAME GOAL OF HEAVEN and helping each other reach it. We understand that we are witnesses of Catholicism and Christ’s love. That is the center of our marriage.” Samantha Brenneman

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“I WAS TAUGHT TO DATE FOR MARRIAGE - always considering if I could see myself marrying the person. That made dating quite easy. My parents decided to surround themselves with people who would lead us to heaven, and that’s exactly what my husband and I have decided to do.” Travis & Samantha Brenneman Photo Credits: Hannah Gustin/Hannah Rae Photography

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Modern Mille


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He’s not even thirty years old, but James Griffin already has quite a bit of life experience – a conversion from Seventh Day Adventism, a baby born out of wedlock, a wedding celebrated in the usus antiquor in traditional Indonesian dress. He also has a distinct point of view, which the author of the popular blog ‘Modern Medievalism’ shares here with REGINA’s Ed Masters.

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REGINA: James, tell us about yourself. JAMES: I was born in Corpus Christi, Texas in 1987, while my parents were on vacation, and have lived in the state most of my life. As with many other so-called “millennials” who convert to the Catholic faith, I was a seeker of the true, good, and beautiful in a world sorely wanting for all three. REGINA: Why do you think this is? JAMES: My parents divorced when I was three years old. When so many of your formative years are spent alone while your mother works outside, you have a lot of time to think about the big questions: the existence of God, what happens to us after death, why so much injustice prevails in the world, and so on. You also have plenty of opportunity to get into trouble; it shouldn’t surprise anyone that most of my peers growing up strictly chose the latter option. REGINA: You have personal experience of this? JAMES: I’ve had my own share of stumbling and falling on the way, even (or perhaps especially) after I was baptized and received into the Catholic faith. Every time that happens, though, I take a little solace from G.K. Chesterton’s What’s Wrong With the World: “The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.” Chestertoniacs may quote that line to death, but for very good reason. 132 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

Like me, Lauren has a very strong sense of how the Catholic faith ought to be expressed in liturgy, sacred art, and music. I’m no artist myself, but I enjoyed her discussions on traditional art and iconography, and she must have found something redeeming in my snarky armchair pontifications on liturgical matters.

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Observe an image of the Blessed Virgin in a Book of Hours. She is almost certainly clad in a cloak of blue, an exceedingly difficult and expensive shade to paint in the centuries before industrial-era pigments. That image would have required the artist to crush a blue gemstone such as lapis lazuli into a fine dust. Now imagine undergoing the same process to dye an entire priest’s chasuble‌ or a wedding garment. How precious it must have been! (Traditional images and icons of Christ are more apt to show Him in red, blue, or gold, while Protestant or modern depictions prefer a simpler white raiment.) 134 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

It was a bonus that the people there took congregational singing quite seriously, and that the pastor was a convert from Protestantism himself (a former Episcopal minister). After a short conversation with one of the deacons at the church, he determined that I knew my catechism well enough to not have to attend any classes at all. I was baptized and confirmed by the pastor just a couple of weeks later, on Christmas Eve of 2005.

REGINA: So, what made you convert to Catholicism? JAMES: I imagine that whenever you ask a convert that ques-

tion, your interview runs the risk of turning into a novel! I’ll try to keep it brief: my religious upbringing was mostly informed by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, where my mother remains a very active member and lay leader. REGINA: They are an American sect, founded in the 19th century, which now has spread to other countries. JAMES: Yes. To outsiders, this Protestant sect is distinguished

mainly by going to church on Saturday and following a few of the Old Testament dietary laws. (I will still never eat a pepperoni pizza or a bacon cheeseburger in my mother’s presence.) For devout Adventists, though, these are just two outward signs of a whole belief system based on a “remnant church” identity and an unusual doctrine called the investigative judgment, whereby Christ entered the Holy of Holies in the heavenly temple in the year 1844 and is now in the final stage of judging the world.

REGINA: Like many of the sects founded in upstate New York in the 1840s, they emphasize the end of the world. JAMES: Yes, to even begin to understand what that means,

Adventist religious education classes teach heavy doses of the Old Testament, with special emphasis on the rites of the Mosaic covenant: the burnt offerings, the priesthood, the Temple

of Jerusalem, and Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement).

REGINA: Sounds like you had a great deal of this as a child. JAMES: I have two things to say about my time studying Scripture with the Adventists: first, what passes for religious education at your typical Catholic parish today is a joke, by comparison. Second, I came to genuinely appreciate the seriousness with which the ancient Israelites took their worship of the One God.

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Let me put it this way: for most of us young folk who are coming to embrace the Church’s treasury of traditions, when we see a priest in a cassock on the street, we don’t see “a man in a dress”, as so many non-Catholics or even Catholics who grew up after Vatican II do. We see a man outwardly witnessing his dedication as a servant of God, making himself plainly known to anyone who might need his guidance or the sacraments in a time of emergency.

REGINA: What do you mean? JAMES: The Adventists are quite fond of taking

their kids to tour these traveling replicas of the Tabernacle; the great tent which the Israelites used during their wanderings in the desert, before the construction of Solomon’s Temple. There, we got to tangibly experience the feeling of dread that the ancients must have had when verbally confessing their sins before a priest, with hands laid over an animal to be slain for their transgressions, at the brazen altar. We learned the significance of each of the high priest’s vestments, from the hoshen (the breastplate with twelve 136 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

“We learned the significance of each of the high priest’s vestments from the hoshen (the breastplate with twelve colored gemstones each signifying one of the twelve tribes of Israel)”

colored gemstones each signifying one of the twelve tribes of Israel) to the mitre (the headpiece with a golden plate inscribed with the words, “holiness unto YHWH�). We imagined the aura of mystery as the high priest stepped beyond the veil but once a year into the Holy of Holies to offer blood and incense on the Day of Atonement. And we beheld with our own eyes that God commanded the use of images in worship, above all to house His presence within the Ark of the Covenant.

REGINA: Wow, very visceral! JAMES: If this all sounds like a prefigurement of the sacraments and rites used in Catholic worship, you would be right (and I highly recommend Catholics tour one of these traveling exhibits if they ever happen to come by your area). By the time I was sixteen, I had put aside flirtations with atheism and was ready to accept Christ as the son of the living God, but I could no longer reconcile the religion of the Old Testament with the radically opposite worship style that Adventists have inherited from other evangelical Protestant traditions: stubbornly iconoclastic, wholly anti-liturgical, and completely devoid of the sacramental spirituality that infused the Israelite faith.

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REGINA: Right, iconoclasm is very big in certain Protestant sects and regrettably today in parts of Catholic Church as well. JAMES: I’ll spare your readers the details of all the other religions I looked into, but you might find it amusing that I learned quite a lot about Catholicism via the Adventist Church. You see, Adventist apologetics haven’t changed much since their 19th century founding. There’s surprisingly little interest in meeting the great challenges of our age, such as secularism and Islam. Instead, they dedicate the bulk of their energies to refuting the “errors” of the church of Rome. REGINA: Not surprising. Sects are known for their insularity. JAMES: This might be because the Adventists believe that the papacy is the Antichrist and that, at the end of days, the pope will achieve world domination and lead a great persecution against all true Christians. I must’ve read more excerpts from pre-conciliar Catholic catechisms and journals (with the purpose of refuting them) than most newly ordained priests read during their entire stay in seminary. Some Adventist apologists would be surprised if they ever found out that most Catholics are actually ignorant of what transubstantiation means, not to mention that Jesuits are more apt to wear Tommy Bahamas to Mass than carry a silenced pistol underneath a cassock! 138 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

As Catholics, though, we know that the Lord restored marriage to its first dignity, as it was “in the time of man’s innocency� in the Garden, and elevated it to a sacrament. I wished for our wedding liturgy to be celebrated with all the solemnity that the Church once accorded this sacrament, long ago.

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I THEN DISCOVERED THAT MY DIOCESE HAD SOMETHING CALLED AN “ANGLICAN USE” PARISH: a church erected specially to accommodate converts from the Episcopal Church. I soon found out that this church, called Our Lady of the Atonement, routinely accepted converts from many Protestant churches year round, and since it was designated a “personal parish”, you didn’t have to live within a certain boundary to be a member. It was a bit of a drive, but from the first Sunday Mass I attended there, I found a liturgy that was offered with reverence and a real sense of continuity with the preconciliar Roman Rite. REGINA: Wow, this is amazing. JAMES: But yes, through Adventist apologetics classes, I already knew that Catholics believed that their Mass was a sacrifice, that they believed Jesus was truly present in the Eucharist, and many other smaller points of doctrine that the average cradle Catholic might not have ever given much thought to. My great obstacle as a convert wasn’t so much learning new things as it was sorting truth from falsehood; for instance, understanding that the Mass wasn’t “re-crucifying Christ over and over again” or that a priest wasn’t assuming divinity for himself by “turning wafers into God”.

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Modern Millennial Medievalists

REGINA: It would be laughable if it wasn’t so sad, actually. JAMES: I was still a minor when I had a meeting with the pastor of my neighborhood Catholic parish. It was a setback for two reasons: first, he wouldn’t allow me to enter the parish’s RCIA program without parental consent. Second, the Masses celebrated there didn’t seem to reflect much of the Catholic faith as I had learned it, either through the Adventist perspective or my own self-study of Catholic books at the public library. REGINA: You must have been mightily confused. JAMES: If I was going to make any progress, I knew I had to seek out a traditional Latin Mass community. Even this was a blunder at first. I still remember that one of the first things I did when I got my first job and car was to try to find the local diocesan Latin Mass at the address listed on a very primitive web page. I completely drove by it the first time, and had to try again the next Sunday. It was based in a tiny chapel behind a nursing home. This was a couple years shy of Summorum Pontificum, so the conditions for this fledgling community were still quite poor. REGINA: Yes, we have seen this sort of thing all around the world. JAMES: If it weren’t for the splendor and truth of the traditional low Mass alone, I’m not sure I would’ve ever gone back. Imagine about 15 worshippers gathered in a chapel built for 20, sweating like hogs under the Texan summer sun, deprived of God’s gift of air conditioning. The priest’s Latin is obscured by the hum of a fan that never seems to blow in your direction, and nothing charitable can be said about either the choice of hymns or the manner in which they’re sung. At last, when Mass is over and you want to ask someone about how to become Catholic, everyone rushes to their cars and splits with nary a nod in your direction. REGINA: Not a very promising prospect. JAMES: Since I had studied Latin in high school and was already an avid student of church history, the all-Latin liturgy wasn’t much of a shock at all compared to the congregation. I had come from a place where robust congregational singing and a real sense of family between all church members were normal, so it was for love of the Mass alone that I came back the next Sunday. REGINA: So, you persisted? JAMES: Yes. After a few weeks, I got a sense that many of the older attendees had been ostracized by their

Catholic peers for years, or even decades, for continuing to prefer the traditional rite after the Council reforms. I got over the lack of hospitality and I asked if I could be baptized there, but since the chapel wasn’t a parish, the priests who celebrated Mass there didn’t have any authority to baptize new Catholics. I had to join a parish, but I dreaded returning to the one in my neighborhood.

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REGINA: So this was ten years ago, then? JAMES: After Pope Benedict XVI issued Summorum Pontificum, the diocesan traditional Latin Mass community was given a new home at the parish of Saint Pius X. By this time, I was assisting there as well as at Our Lady of the Atonement. Since I was a chanter at Atonement’s Gregorian chant schola, I was invited to help the TLM community build up their choral program for their first-ever sung Masses. Although I’ve moved out and back into the city a few times over the years, I’ve been an enthusiastic chanter (and resident eccentric) at both churches whenever I’m in town! Where liturgies are concerned, the traditional Latin Mass will always be my first love, but I’m also very grateful for the role that

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the Anglican Use played in bringing me into the Catholic faith, and so I remain a member of Our Lady of the Atonement, even though I also regularly sing the sacred chant and occasionally serve the altar at the diocesan TLM as well. REGINA: So how did you meet your wife? JAMES: I’m afraid this story may not be as edifying as one would hope, but since you asked, Mrs. Griffin and I met originally on the Internet about four years ago, through a forum dedicated to Catholics interested in the traditional Latin Mass. REGINA: Very common these days. JAMES: Lauren’s picture is next to the definition of

Modern Millennial Medievalists

the word “seeker” in Merriam-Webster’s. Though a cradle Catholic, we had a lot of shared experiences growing up. Her parents divorced before she was even a year old, much of her childhood was spent alone, and she, too, came to discover the traditional Latin Mass on her own. In her case, it was offered at a parish near a small art school for traditional drawing and portraiture that she was attending at the time.

REGINA: Sounds like a match made in heaven. JAMES: The first two years were quite difficult

because Lauren lived in Pennsylvania. Long distance relationships are tough for anyone, and in most cases, I wouldn’t recommend it. It’s expensive to fly out to meet your significant other every few months in order to maintain personal interaction, and even more challenging to be chaste when you do

meet. And yet, since finding like-spirited Catholics these days can be a textbook needle-in-a-haystack scenario, a long distance relationship is sometimes a “necessary evil”. Eventually, after enough waffling about over the question of marriage and encouraged by a holy religious priest who celebrates the old Mass here, we promised ourselves to each other in a traditional rite of betrothal after Mass on the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Now, for most couples, engagement is a joyous affair followed by the excitement of planning a wedding. Two families come together to help, and while they may not necessarily like each other, they’ll cover most of the costs and arrange the details. Parents indulge the bride’s aesthetic whims, and the groom just shows up.

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REGINA: That’s not what happened to you? JAMES: For us, the following year was just the opposite; to the contrary, they saw some of the most harrowing and trying months of our lives. Our betrothal was the day after I returned from Houston for my older half-brother’s funeral. After a long struggle with depression (which had also played a part in my father’s premature death), he had committed suicide, leaving behind two young children, my niece and nephew. REGINA: How terrible! JAMES: Even with the grace of the sacraments, it’s easy to succumb to the soullessness of this post-industrial, post-Christian age; I’d be lying if I denied falling into despair and isolation multiple times after becoming Catholic. The next few months would be the ultimate test of faith: about three weeks after the betrothal, while Lauren was away in Pennsylvania, she called me late one night to tell me that she was pregnant. I wasn’t financially in a good place at the time, and Lauren would soon have to withdraw from college. Fears ran amok, we weren’t sure about having any future stability, and any further plans for 144 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

marriage were tabled. There was little talk of God in those days, and I even apostasized for about a week. With our baby, we were on the verge of betraying everything we had believed in. REGINA: Sounds like a bad time for you. JAMES: Looking back now, I can only see the petty fearmongering of two materialists who suddenly regressed into adolescence at the thought that a cushy, middle-class existence with their own two-story house might not be in their cards for the immediate future. I didn’t think about it at the time, but that scared phone call late in the night was made on the feast of the Holy Innocents, commemorating the babes who were slaughtered at the command of a petty king who feared that a child would someday take everything he had. It’s not always heroic virtue to do the right thing, but the wrong choice can easily make us no better than Herod REGINA: Yes, this is true. JAMES: Eventually, we turned to God and finished the initial pre-marital counseling shortly before our baby was born. Our daughter was christened with the

name Katharine, after Saint Katharine Drexel (also a native of Lauren’s home of Philadelphia) and Queen Katharine of Aragon, the headstrong wife of Henry VIII who upheld the indissolubility of her marriage to her last breath. God has provided, and I’ve joyfully adopted the new role of father, dressing and carrying her wherever I go. REGINA: And the wedding…? JAMES: Lauren is not the sort of woman to pay much mind to wedding arrangements even in the best circumstances, and with a baby in tow, it all but ensured her total apathy to the secular trappings around the nuptials. None of her friends or family would come to Texas to attend, except for her mother. Our reception was a low-budget affair with all homemade food served; having it on a Monday cut even more costs.

red, and green, depending on the region. The bride and groom wear matching colors and designs; the more ornate in needlework, the better, because even the poorest of farmers from the rice paddies are a king and queen on the day of their wedding. Ours still featured white, which has become the traditional color for weddings in the west since the age of Queen Victoria; but the dominant color is blue, the most desired of all shades by the artists of medieval Christendom. REGINA: This is the same perspective as the Church has had for centuries, of course.

JAMES: I’m not going to leap from there to conclude that a man sins when he goes to Sunday Mass without a suit coat and necktie. That is, in my opinion, arbitrary and adding to the gospel we’ve received with unnecessary obstacles to salvation. Folding a pocket square isn’t an indulgenced act. REGINA: Okay, but the liturgy…? But the value of distinctive dress extends well beyond our clergy. From princes to peasants, the lay Catholic JAMES: The marriage liturgy, on the other hand, is anointed at confirmation to represent the Savior is about more than just two people. The Mass and of mankind to the outside world as a type of priest, sacraments are given to us to glorify God and inprophet, and king. We are subjects and citizens of a crease our relationship with Him. The modern world kingdom greater than any nation-state on earth. devalues the marriage bond to a mere contract that So I don’t encourage priests (and deacons, too!) to take can be entered and broken between anyone who can to the public square in an “outmoded” form of dress sign a piece of paper issued by the state. like the cassock without making my own efforts. So, as in my grandfathers’ youth (both in Georgia and rural REGINA: Okay, I have to ask about those wedding Java), I’ll sometimes put on a vested suit and hat when garments. going out and about town for very “special” occasions like leaving the house, driving around aimlessly, JAMES: I was born and raised in the United States, grocery shopping, or visiting friends’ houses. Mrs. but I was always fascinated with the diverse wedding Griffin will do the same in a pencil skirt, blouse, hose, garments worn throughout the islands of Indonesia, and cloche. She says I’m the only person on earth who where my mother was born. A distinctive wedding habitually wears a baby wrap over a suit. We occasioncostume outwardly affirms the dignity of marriage, ally get more eccentric by celebrating the even richer but Lauren didn’t want to wear a conventional white styles from past centuries of Christian civilization at dress, and besides, the monochromatism of the typical Renaissance festivals and similar events. When the white wedding is a bit bland for the riot of colors of the torturous summer sun burns with full fervor here in church and its rich vestments. So, I wrote to a dressTexas, I shed these in favor of light, yet splendid batik maker in Jakarta to order a made-to-measure set of print shirts imported from Indonesia. dding. garments for us both. It took six months and we didn’t Ours still featured white, which has become the trareceive them until just days before the wedding, but ditional color for weddings in the west since the age they were as comfortable as pajamas and cheaper than of Queen Victoria; but the dominant color is blue, the custom garments from any western clothier. most desired of all shades by the artists of medieval In Indonesia, the wedding garments can be made in Christendom. any colors, though the mainstays are black and gold,

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REGINA: So, what is life like for modern medievalists? family, and are not the slightest bit ashamed to bring our baby to a pub or a nice restaurant. I don’t know JAMES: If Josef Pieper was on to something in his if this naturally changes for married couples over book, Leisure: The Basis of Culture, then Mrs. Griffin the years, but that’s how we go about life right now: is one of the most cultured women alive. This isn’t together everywhere. to say that being a domestic mother is easy! Rather, no matter how little sleep she gets or how crazy little REGINA: You have a popular blog, ‘Modern MedieKatharine acts through the course of the day, Lauren valism.’ is somehow always contemplating the “big questions”; the reflections which are necessary to build JAMES: At Lauren’s suggestion, I created Modern lasting civilization. She permeates nursing and playMedievalism so I could relate our present world to time at home with audiobooks and podcasts on anideas rooted in the Middle Ages. The first “modern ything from the old Icelandic sagas to lectures from medievalists” were those who spearheaded the Goththe Rev. John Hunwicke (an eminent Ordinariate ic revival in art, architecture, music, and literature priest and gentleman-scholar, if there ever was one) in the 19th century, after the disasters of the French on the liturgy. Last weekend, she went to the public Revolution and the Napoleonic wars. Some obvilibrary and checked out books on parenting methods ous examples in the secular world are the romantics in other countries and old world European cooking. like Walter Scott and Lord Tennyson who inspired a Before she became pregnant, Lauren was also studrevival of Arthurian literature, and the pre-Raphaelying the Renaissance lute. We’re currently trying to ite painters such as Dante Gabriel Rossetti. But their figure out how to get her back to her lessons. influence was felt in the Church as well. These were the same decades that saw the medieval maid of LorIf she’s a Mary, I’m more of a Martha. I always have to raine, Joan of Arc, put on the track to canonization. be “doing” something. I started chanting and servWhere sacred music was littered with chamber pieces ing the altar at Mass very soon after I converted, and and saccharine hymns, Dom Gueranger and the even after marriage, I still regularly chant in choir abbey of Solesmes led the revival of Gregorian chant and serve low Mass once every month or so. If I want from the brink of extinction. to learn about some heretofore unknown facet of history, I read everything I can find on the subject REGINA: Lots of stuff on Pugin on your blog, too. and write an essay to post online. When I got into genealogical studies last year, I started work on a book My blog has a very special focus on the king of modof my family history and joined a hereditary society, ern medievalists: Augustus Welby Pugin. An archithe Sons of the American Revolution. Even if I play tect by profession, Pugin converted to the Catholic a video game, I’m apt to write a full-fledged review faith in 1834 at just twenty-two years of age, well of the experience and analyze its narrative themes before Blessed John Newman and the other, more afterward. Lauren is sometimes annoyed that I can’t famous British converts of the century. Soon after his just sit still and contemplate the mysteries of God conversion, he started changing the face of the newly and eternity without turning it into a paper. emancipated Catholic Church in England, raising up one new parish after another in the Gothic revival What’s most important to us both is that we share style. His book Contrasts illustrated the banality and our experiences together. If she reads a book, I’m even the dishonesty of architecture in his own day, probably going to read at least part of it, too, even if and called for a return to the principles that raised up I’m not actually interested in the subject. If I play a the great cathedrals, abbeys, poor houses, and civic video game, we take turns on the controller or keycenters of the later Middle Ages. board. We almost always go out to meet friends as a

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I began this interview by describing my search for the good, true, and beautiful. More than one person has reacted to the images of our solemn high nuptial Mass with an inspiration to have solemn Mass celebrated with their future weddings, too. There are other seekers out there who know intuitively that beauty matters in our worship. If even one soul comes to a newfound appreciation for the heritage built by our Catholic forefathers in faith, I think Modern Medievalism will have been worth the effort. Vivat Jesus!

The “true principles of Christian architecture” didn’t stop at buildings; Pugin designed everything from vestments to chalices, jewelry, household furniture, dinner plates, and his third wife’s wedding dress. He died, exhausted and overworked at forty, but not before building the first Catholic cathedral in England since the Reformation, meeting Pope Pius IX, holding a professorship in antiquities at Saint Mary’s seminary (despite never having attended a day of college in his life), and most famously, impressing his ideals forever in the British imagination by designing the interior of the Houses of Parliament and the “Big Ben” clock tower at Westminster. REGINA: What lesson are you drawing from Pugin’s legacy? JAMES: Just as Pugin had no problem boarding a train to the site of his next church project and incorporating new technologies into the design of his locks, I’m hardly a Luddite, nor even the sort to advocate a return to agrarian living; but I believe we have much to learn from our forefathers in the ages of faith, when the 148 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

Church shaped culture to a way that’s never been seen since. REGINA: What’s your favorite Blog post to date? JAMES: One of my favorite blog articles was a call to revive the Divine Office as a publicly offered liturgy in the churches. Today, the vast majority of Catholics don’t even know what the Office is because priests treat the hours as a devotion to be prayed in the privacy of the office or rectory. The hours are unknown even in our cathedrals. Yet, in England before the Reformation, a typical Sunday involved attending not only Mass, but Matins and Lauds before, and Evensong (Vespers and Compline) at the close of the day. I still recall reading an old record of a congregation that sued their pastor before the local bishop because he wasn’t singing his Matins in church. Now, we bolt to the door before the end of Communion and can’t be bothered to go to church at all if a major holy day falls on a Monday. No one has time for God anymore. And so, I’ve proposed the Office as a solution for the restlessness of our age, for they sanctify time, and force us to make time for Him.

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Free HERE 150 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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Men in

Church By Joseph Shaw


ardinal Burke recently gave a rather controversial interview on the crisis of men in the Church. The lack of men in most Catholic churches in the West is there for all to see; looking at those most involved in parish life—readers, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, Altar servers—the lack of menfolk is even more striking. The general problem of lapsation and apathy has clearly hit men hard— or, even harder—than it has hit women. This phenomenon, though undeniable, has attracted very little official attention from Church authorities. Part of the preparation for the 2015 Synod was an embarrassingly amateurish video put out by the Pontifical Council for the Laity seeking input for the Synod’s deliberations. From men? No, from women. Even as men become an endangered species in our congregations, the focus remains on the experiences of women and how the Church can reach out to them.

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hile the Catholic Church may seem to need make up some lost ground on the female front because the clergy is all male, those denominations with female clergy don’t appear to have any more interest in men’s concerns. On the contrary, for liberal Episcopalians/Anglicans the ministerial calling could soon be a female occupation, like nursing or secretarial work once was, and the feminisation of church structures will be complete and irreversible. So what makes men uncomfortable with the Church? Does it matter? And can anything be done about it? A good rule of thumb is that the more liberal a congregation or denomination, 154 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

the fewer men are interested. Men are perfectly comfortable with Islam, which actually attracts more men than women. Hinduism, Orthodox Judaism, and Eastern Orthodoxy also seem to have no problem attracting and retaining men. It isn’t religion per se which men don’t like; when surveys in Europe and American show that women are ‘more religious’ than men this reflects the failure of mainstream Christianity to engage men -- not an unavoidable male distrust of religion. Within Catholicism, anyone wanting to see a congregation with a roughly balanced gender ratio needs to get themselves to a Traditional Mass.

Like or it not, men respond more readily to a religion which is demanding, which presents them with the objective and transcendent, and to a liturgy which ordered and reverent. They find it easier to relate to a religion which is serious, and grown up. This contrasts with emotional, spontaneous, wordy, and community-focused liturgy, catechesis, and churchmanship in general. These may seem rather vague concepts, but it isn’t hard to see them in real life. Is Islam a demanding religion, or a soft option? Is Orthodox Judaism all about the worship of a transcendent God, or all about expressing one’s emotions? Is the liturgy of the Eastern Orthodox characterised by reverence and awe, or spontaneity?

We know the answers. We should not be surprised when the Traditional Catholic liturgy, with its emphasis on order and reverence, or Traditional Catholic spirituality, with its emphasis on self-discipline and penance, and its external and physical acts of devotion like pilgrimages, seems attractive to men, who have been told as young Catholics that being a good person is about holding hands, and joining in emotional spontaneous prayers. A lot of men would rather gash themselves with knives (perhaps in honour of Shiva the Destroyer?) than tell a group of strangers about their deepest hopes and fears. That doesn’t make men irreligious, and it shouldn’t make them bad Catholics.

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It isn’t hard to see what can be done about the situation: there are obvious ways to make the liturgy -- and the way that the Church manifests itself to Catholics in general -- less uncomfortable to men. This can be done without making it any less comfortable to women. The Traditional Mass offers a familiar model. But at this point a common response one encounters is that, if men don’t like what progressive theologians and liturgists have done to the Church -- often with the specific goal of undermining notions of objective truth, the transcendent, and anything smacking of ‘patriarchy’ -- then it is men who are to blame. According this view, men—and women too—who lapse because the liturgy is unbearable, and the teaching devoid of substance, should get a grip, because after all the Church is the Ark of Salvation and lapsing is a sin.

Why Aren’t Men ‘Included’? The strange thing is that the same people who say this will go on to say that the Church should make itself more acceptable to feminists by removing ‘non-inclusive’ language from the Bible. Similarly, the Church should make itself more ‘acceptable’ to native Australian shamans by permitting their smoke-ceremony at a Papal Mass. (Editor’s Note: This occurred during Pope Benedict’s visit to Australia in 2008.) The Church is evangelising by nature, and we should remove whatever barriers there might be to people accepting and living the Faith fruitfully, if doing so does not endanger the integrity of the Gospel -- and if it actually works. Men are not an exception to Christ’s command to make disciples of all nations. Serving them up a feminised liturgy is no less blameworthy than the Anglican imposition of the English Book of Common Prayer on Welsh-speaking communities at the time of the Reformation. It’s just a stupid thing to do, if you want to win them over. •

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Who Needs Men in Church

“The Church is evangelising by nature, and we should remove whatever barriers there might be to people accepting and living the Faith fruitfully�.

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The Latin Mass Society of England and Wales

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Join the Pilgrimage to Walsingham August 2015 Click HERE

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NYPD Catholic The Story of the Patrolman’s Fraternity of St. Michael Article By:

Matthew Reid, New York Police Department

Photo Credit:

Arrys Ortanez

Catholic Cops


he police profession, harking back to the very first days of American policing in the 1840’s, has always been a heavily Irish Catholic profession. That being said, later on the Italians began to bring significant numbers into the profession, as well as the Germans, Polish and during the last half of the twentieth century Puerto Ricans and other Hispanics. One thing that all of these ethnicities have in common is that they are heavily, and in most cases, entirely Catholic. Because of this, the Catholic faith has always played a very large role in the vocation of law enforcement to many generations of young men, and later women who hail from these ethnic groups. The vast majority of officers serving the public were products of Catholic schools. The strong desire to do what has always been referred to as “God’s work” has become a way a life for many families over the generations. During my fifteen years as a New York City Police Officer, I have witnessed the almost complete disintegration of Catholic adherence and piety on this once-devout job. It was not in good shape when I came on the job, but it has gotten steadily worse over the years.

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Talking to Cops About The Faith As I became more and more frustrated with the lack of a true Catholic culture and identity on my job, I began to speak to many people about why there wasn't a serious Catholic identity on a job that is 35,000 strong -- 75 percent of whom are baptized Catholics. To think that out of a pool that large that you are hard-pressed to find a Catholic who does the minimum by going every Sunday and Holy Day is a truly sobering experience. I spoke with individuals who were part of the Catholic fraternal group of the NYPD, but it appeared to be by many accounts in disarray with a rapidly dwindling membership. After much prayer, I found myself being almost effortlessly pushed to start an organization that would be passionately and unapologetically Catholic in a job that had gotten so politically correct and relativistic with regards to issues of faith. I was encouraged by many with this venture, but no one encouraged me like my former co-worker and office mate Kathleen Kenny. She, being a member of the NYPD and in law enforcement for much longer than I, understood more than most how very needed this was. She is the one who handled the arrangements with the priests and churches at first and for that I owe her my sincere gratitude. She is a wonderful and faithful friend. I decided to dedicate this new group to our patron saint as police officers, St. Michael the Archangel. We named it "The Patrolman's Fraternity of St. Michael". We held our first meeting in March of 2014 and have had a meeting approximately every two months since then. We first began having our meetings at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in East Harlem with Father Christopher Salvatori, who was incredibly

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NYPD Catholic

accommodating, but the location was an issue for many and I found that for first-time attendees, the Low Mass seemed to confuse them. For almost the past year we have been meeting at the Church of Holy Innocents in midtown Manhattan, which is convenient for many. We also meet on Wednesday evenings for the Missa Cantata. The High Mass with choir and all the “smells and bells” really resonates. I remember my first TLM with the choir and chant and it was truly other-worldly; I see that in people the first time they go as well. What a blessing it is to have the TLM that we do today, compared to the dark days of the 1970’s and 80’s.

Losing Your Soul In the Job There have always been temptations on this job and I have told many that it is very easy to lose your soul on this job, as sadly many have. I myself was fallen away from the faith of my youth for many years. I fell into some of the traps that so many of my law enforcement brethren find themselves in. As I got married and had children I realized how important my Catholic faith really was to me. The problem was, and I'm embarrassed to admit this, I realized that I didn't know the Faith well enough to properly defend it against the inevitable questions that my children would ask later in life. I decided to delve into the faith of my ancestors, not knowing where it would lead me. It led me to praying the Rosary steadily for the first time in my life, to six months later the Traditional Latin Mass (TLM) at St. Agnes in New York City. As I sat there with my wife, still at the time a cradle Lutheran who had no interest in converting to Catholicism, I honestly have to admit that I had tears in my eyes. It had all finally clicked and made sense to me.

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I simply could not get enough of this Mass; the beauty, the splendor, the other-worldly nature of it that seemed to make the world outside completely disappear. 164 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

NYPD Catholic

The Most Beautiful Thing I Had Ever Seen This Mass was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen. ‘Awe’ is the best word to describe it. I had always wondered about why my grandparents’ faith was so different from later generations and how seriously they took it. This Mass was why -- and I was hooked, immediately. My wife was quite taken with it as well. During our conversations about our faith, and there were many, I would ask her about converting to Catholicism and she would often say, “why should I convert to Catholicism? The Catholic Mass is just like the Lutheran service, but the Lutherans do it better”. Sadly, I could not argue with her. I had been to Lutheran services and there was more reverence, more traditional sacred music and ALTAR RAILS. I had never seen an altar rail in my youth and made my First Communion receiving our Lord standing and in the hand, as we were all instructed to do so. My Lutheran convert wife however, made it kneeling at the altar rail where there isn’t even the belief in the real physical presence of Christ in the Eucharist. We continued to go to the TLM regularly and I prayed the Rosary fervently for her conversion. One night as we were getting for bed, she said to me “I’m ready. I’m ready to convert”. The Rosary led me to this Mass and the intercession of our Blessed Mother and the power of the traditional Mass are what led to my wife’s conversion. I have seen first-hand the power of the TLM. I began to read exhaustively about the Faith and couldn’t get enough. I read the voluminous stories of converts who did so as a result of experiencing the TLM.

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Our Mission: The Beauty of the Faith As I became more and more frustrated with the lack of a true Catholic culture and identity on Our mission is truly very simple: to introduce our law enforcement brethren to the beauty that is the Catholic Faith -- unjustly withheld from so many. The easiest way to introduce them to this beauty is to introduce them to the beauty and reverence in the traditional Mass, the Mass of the saints and what built western civilization into the greatest civilization in the history of mankind. The men in the Fraternity are from all five NYC boroughs, with some already attending the TLM with their families. Most however had never been to one and are in awe when they see the Mass of the Ages. It has such a power that I tell people that our job is really quite easy. All we have to do is to get guys to show up and the Holy Spirit, with the power of the Mass, will do the rest. Guys will come up to me and ask “how come I have never seen anything like that before? It was amazing! Where can I go on a Sunday and experience that?� Some guys come because they hear about it from the other Catholic fraternal organization on the job, the Holy Name Society, others through word of mouth, still others in response to my emails and flyers. Some I just bug and drag there sometimes, even though they would in most cases probably not go. I know that once they are there it will be worth their while and hopefully they will start to regularly receive the sacraments again. It has been such a tremendous blessing to meet so many fine men of faith that I would otherwise not have met had it not been for the creation of this fraternity.

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Men and Challenge Men want to be challenged. Men like a challenge. If you don’t feel challenged by the TLM, then you must have been asleep with narcolepsy. The priest on the altar is like the general and you are following him to Calvary. It truly speaks to men, and I have seen the results and the power of the Mass in my NYPD brethren time and time again. Father Villa, since he has become administrator of Holy Innocents, has been very supportive of our fraternity. He understands very well the problems faced within the police department, as he was chaplain to the Yonkers, New York Police Department for many years. He has seen firsthand the evisceration of true Catholic piety and practice amongst police officers and has generously offered his services for whatever it is that we need to re-evangelize our fallen-away brethren.

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t truly is a daunting task when you think about how many souls have fallen away, but it is a necessary venture. He is always open to new ideas in the pursuit of getting more men on our job into the pews, and most importantly, keeping them there. We have much work to do, but it is truly enjoyable work. I cannot think of a more rewarding thing than showing my law enforcement brethren what has been denied to us. This is our Catholic birthright. As I said to my lovely, now-Catholic wife after our first TLM together, “I feel like my Catholic birthright has been denied for 35 years, but more importantly, I feel that Jesus Christ himself has been shortchanged and been denied the reverence and due worship owed to Him for the last 45 years.” We are now raising our children in a Traditional Latin Mass Community where they will receive the sacraments in the traditional rite and have the Catholic formation that most of my generation did not. My four year old son already tells me that he wants to be an altar boy!

Where To Find the Fraternity:

The Patrolman’s Fraternity of St. Michael meets at the Church of the Holy Innocents once a month on Wednesday’s at the 6PM Traditional Latin Sung Mass. The dates of the meetings change so if anyone is interested in attending, they can visit us on our Facebook page at “The Patrolman’s Fraternity of St. Michael”. We are engaged in the much-needed endeavor of bringing hard identity Catholicism back to the New York City Police Department. I cannot even begin to tell you what a need there is for this. 168 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

A child of the Sixties, she hiked the Way of St James alone.


Click Here

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Article By: Beverly De Soto Photos by| Ed Masters & Joseph Shaw Regina Magazine Sacred Beauty

10 Years in Training A Visit to Bath, England for the 11th Annual Training Conference organized by the Latin Mass Society of England and Wales.

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10 Years in Training

Prior Park College is a stately home in Bath, now a Catholic boarding school for secondary students.

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Prior Park College’s school chapel also has ideal acoustics for polyphonic singing.

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Their classical style chapel is very beautiful, and has not suffered from any significant reordering or misguided ‘renovation.’

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10 Years in Training

It also has plenty of side altars, which are useful both for tuition purposes and for the priests to offer their private Masses

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The conference was attended by priests, transitional and permanent deacons, a seminarian and a group of laymen. There were five priestly and lay tutors, and a schola and polyphonic choir.

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The clergy came from England, Scotland, Poland and St Lucia in the Caribbean. On each of the three days, the majority of the time was given over to tuition.

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A SOLEMN MASS WAS CELEBRATED EACH DAY, and the programme also included Lauds, Vespers, Benediction and Compline when they could be fitted in. For the first time, one of the priests attending the conference was there at the request of his bishop. This is a pleasing development. 180 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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THE LATIN MASS SOCIETY conference also serves a useful purpose in training servers.

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SEVERAL OF THE RECENTLY APPOINTED BISHOPS in England and Wales are much more sympathetic to the traditional Mass than were their predecessors.

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In many parts of England and Wales it is harder to find servers than celebrants for the old Mass. Servers are not only given training in Low Mass, but many come to perfect their skills at serving Solemn Mass. Some of the priests were new to the usus antiquior, and studied the celebration of Low Mass. Others had attended earlier conferences and returned to study the roles of the ministers at Solemn Mass. All of them made good progress in all they came to learn.

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“I thoroughly enjoyed the Latin Mass society training course for priests, especially the opportunity to meet priests who are of the same spirit and spirituality.’

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“As always with first experiences, one only realizes afterwards how much more one could have done.�

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“However, having had this experience under my belt, I should like to do another training session next year, if at all possible. I am tempted to do the Low Mass, if only to absorb more of the theology of the Rubrics.�

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“Thanks to all involved in organising the Conference, especially Fr Francis Wadsworth who patiently watched me getting nowhere fast while struggling with the Fractio. The Libera Nos Domine has taken on a whole new meaning for me.�

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THE CONFERENCE HAS BENEFITS THAT GO FAR BEYOND MERE TUITION. Many of the priests regard the occasion as a form of retreat or pilgrimage, the quality liturgies being an uplifting experience.

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10 Years in Training

Also, it is a great social occasion for the traditionally minded priests. Many of them are quite isolated, and they enjoy the company of the other priests that attend the conferences.

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It was particularly pleasing that two seminarians attended the conference.

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“It is encouraging to see that the new generation of priests are very keen to learn the older Mass.� said Paul Waddington, longtime organizer of the Conference. 194 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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Priests, seminarians, deacons and laymen interested in attending future conferences should contact Paul Waddington via the Latin Mass Society: HERE 196 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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Free HERE 198 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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The Heart of a Catholic Artist By Martinho Correia 200 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty



or as long as I remember, I have drawn. My mother still has drawings of mine from kindergarten. Like many others of my generation, I copied comics in order to learn how to draw. Growing up I really wanted to be a comic book artist and in high school my friends and I created our own comic book featuring Canadian superheroes of our own creation. However, my father was a Portuguese immigrant to Canada with a grade three education and so, as a first generation Canadian, it was very important that my siblings and I be well educated. This meant studying at University, ideally law or medicine. I enrolled and completed a couple of years of premed sciences but my heart was never in it. The margins of my notebooks were filled with sketches of professors, classmates and superheroes. One day, my mother noticed this and said, “Why don’t you take an art course?” I soon after enrolled full-time in the Fine Art Faculty at the University of Calgary. I graduated in 1990 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Painting. The thing is, like most contemporary art schools, training was limited and instead the focus was on one’s originality and expressing oneself. I had some excellent teachers including John Hall, a noted Canadian still-life painter, as well as art educator Dr. Larry Cromwell. My Path To Florence In 1992 I happened to be in Toronto visiting relatives on the same weekend that Michael John Angel was giving a series of lectures on the art and practice of representational painting. Angel’s life work was to resurrect the practices of the great 19th Century academies. He himself studied with the great Italian portrait painter Pietro Annigoni. Angel ran a school in Toronto which I attended that summer. Later I visited him at his Florence studio and committed to studying in Florence at some point. Meanwhile I had returned to school in 1993 to complete a Bachelor of Education in Art Education at the University of British Colombia. The next several years I taught junior high school

art for the Calgary Catholic School Board. In 2000 I took a leave of absence from teaching in order to study at the Angel Academy of Art in Florence. After two years I decided to resign my teaching position continue to study in Florence. After I completed my training I was given a teaching position and continue to teach workshops there. In 2010 I completed a Masters in Architecture, Sacred Art and Liturgy at The European University/Pontifical Athenaeum, ‘Regina Apostolorum’ in Rome. Architects, priests and theologians put the program together to train artists and architects to take part in the New Evangelization. I continue to seek out new training, workshops and teachers. Most recently I studied with Odd Nerdrum at his studio in Norway and David Kassan in Dublin. Finding the Richness of Catholic Tradition As a child growing up post Vatican II my catechesis was disastrous. Despite attending church regularly, studying in Catholic schools and receiving all the sacraments, I had no idea of the depth of the Catholic faith. This ‘Regina Apostolorum program opened me up to the richness of the Catholic tradition and laid out a path in which I could take my painting. I am interested in continuing the Catholic and Western traditions of painting, philosophy and theology and passing them on to students and other artists. I would hope to take part in a new Renaissance in which we rediscover these traditions so shamelessly ignored since the advent of Modernism. I had always been more interested in Caravaggio than Jackson Pollock. I find abstraction generally rather boring and self expression as practiced by many “artists” rather banal. My love of representational art began with the comic book artists I admired as a youth and continued as I discovered their roots in mid 20th century illustration and its direct connection to the great masters of the past.

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Today’s Cult of the Boring Artist Representational art is not dead. In fact there are hundreds, if not thousands of artists working in the tradition producing fantastic and beautiful work from countries across the globe. In order to understand the suppression of representational art in the West, we need to look at the broader political and ideological forces at work. I believe the lack of widespread promotion of the art form is part of a larger ideological battle that promotes a very specific anti-Western and, more specifically, anti-Christian worldview. This is not as crazy as it seems. It is pretty common knowledge that the CIA funded the Abstract art movement in the USA. World Wars I and II quite handily removed the old world order and their traditions. In terms of art, traditional western artists expressed the subject matter of the piece. Today, artists express ‘themselves.’ In such a paradigm, since the vast majority of people are quite boring, the only interesting artwork is that which pushes every possible boundary and challenges any tradition that is left.

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As a result the focus becomes as much about personality of the artists as the about the art work. Often the artist is promoted with the work being secondary. Where Have All the Artists Gone? Though they have been few, there have been realist artists active throughout the 20th century. In Italy, it was Pietro Annigoni in Florence who accepted students who worked with him in the traditional studio method. In America R.H. Ives Gammil continued the academic tradition. Since the 1990’s with the founding of several schools in Florence a large group of international students have found a place to study these traditional methods. The Florence Academy, Charles Cecil Studios and The Angel Academy have all produced students who have then taken this training to their home countries around the world. These art students tend to be either younger, 15 – 25, or older, 50 plus. Most people in between are busy working on careers. The exception is in the short workshops which we teach where we tend to see all ages.

“IT COMES DOWN TO FAITH AND MONEY. While we live in a time of great wealth and prosperity our faith has dwindled. Our “advanced culture” is unable to match anything done in the Renaissance or Baroque.”

“I believe the lack of widespread promotion of the art form is part of a larger ideological battle that promotes a very specific anti-Western and, more specifically, anti-Christian worldview.”

Where to Find the Art An annual conference called TRAC (http://trac2015. org) gathers artists, teachers and others connected with the world of representational art. An excellent magazine which focuses on traditional and contemporary realist art is Fine Art Connoisseur. For those who wish to know more and find great art, the best place to look is the Art Renewal Center. It is the largest online museum for traditional art. It features hundreds of contemporary realists along side historical greats. Every year it holds an online salon in which thousands of artists apply for a number of prizes. In addition it hands out scholarships to promising young students in order they may continue their studies. Two galleries in the real world who carry artists I like are John Pence in San Francisco and Arcadia in New York.

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“Over the last 100 years our culture has turned its back on the great tradition of Western Painting and in the process almost lost 800 years of painting training and practice. As a result, none of our public institutions teach traditional painting.� Martinho Correia

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“Cardinal Ratzinger’s book, The Spirit of the Liturgy was the source for many of the ideas presented at the 2010 'Regina Apostolorum' in Rome and training was focused on the great Catholic traditions in art and theology.” (Painting: Anastasis by Martinho Correia, Collection of Cardinal Piacenza in the Vatican).

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“FROM WHAT I CAN SEE THE LARGER ART WORLD IS IGNORING US; that’s fine as we are building our own art world to directly challenge this old order. We are the new avant-garde.” Photo Credit: ​Lucio Parrillo

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“I DON’T THINK WE CAN UNDERESTIMATE THE RESOURCE OF THE INTERNET, which has allowed these new schools of representational art to become known and has helped spread traditional training to those who otherwise could not find a teacher or a school to help them.”

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ThatCan save the World

Interview By:

REGINA Magazine

Photo Credit:



is name is Giancarlo Polenghi and he is the Academic Director of the Sacred Art School in Florence, where he also teaches Theology and Aesthetics. The Sacred Art School was begun just three short years ago with the support of Florence’s Cardinal Giuseppe Betori, and today its students have come from Italy, USA, Spain, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, China, Sweden, England, and Argentina to study creating sacred art in this world culture capital. “I have lived in Florence since 1984 and from that moment on I have been talking with artists working here.” - Giancarlo Polenghi

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“I believe that all art is representative, because even abstract art or conceptual art re-presents something. I have been interested in figurative, realistic art ever since I was a student.� Regina Magazine


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“IF FIGURATIVE ART WAS ALSO PRESENT IN GREEK AND ROMAN TIMES, it is with the Humanism in the Western culture that a new understanding of the creation and the Creator, in the human body, happened. Therefore we can say that the Church influence on art was and still is very important. More than that, we could say the relation between art and religion was always strong. Art was and it is still a way to study and understand the Divine, the Sacred. To touch the untouchable. This is true for every form of art, from theatre to dance, from sculpture to painting.� Giancarlo Polenghi

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“SAINT JOHN PAUL II’S LETTER TO THE ARTIST (1999) was the catalyst in the personal artistic research of a group of artists living in Florence. In 2010 Dony McManus, Cody Swanson, Osamu Tanimoto decided to start the Sacred Art School - Firenze. I introduced them to Italian artisans and to Opera del Duomo, IUline (an Italian University), the ARTES association and the Chamber of Commerce.”

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Students at the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts don’t party...

Thomas More College of Liberal Arts A School for All Seasons

Fall Open House October 11-12, 2015

...they feast.

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“MORE PARTICULARLY IT WAS SAINT FRANCIS OF ASSISI having the stigmate in his body which provided a real example for a new, more realistic way to depict the God-man on the cross. Giotto was working under Franciscan influence, and with him we have the early Renaissance.” Giancarlo Polenghi

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“OUR SCHOOL WAS FOUNDED BECAUSE THERE WAS A NEED FOR AN ENVIRONMENT OPEN TO A BEAUTY THAT CAN SAVE THE WORLD. The Church’s role on the tradition of figurative and realistic art is determinant. In the Renaissance, it was the concept of the Incarnation which brought a renewed interest in representing the human body as the center of universe -- and a portrait of the image and likeness of God.” Giancarlo Polenghi

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��€œCONTEMPORARY WESTERN ART SEEMS TO BE DIFFERENT FROM THIS TRADITION, and less interested in sacred subject matter. But this is only a part of the story. From the Second Vatican Council on the Church manifested a strong will to dialogue with the artistic community. There are many official documents in this direction, and it is also true that many artists were interested in sacred themes or in a spiritual dimension of their work. In the Sacrosantum Concilium (the first document approved by the Second Vatican Council 1965) it is stated that promoting sacred art schools will be necessary for the Church.â€?

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Beauty That Can Save the World

“THE ARTISTIC ENVIRONMENT IN WESTERN SOCIETIES HAS DEVELOPED A SECULARIZED ATTITUDE, less open to sacred art. The idea of beauty as an end, a supreme one, can destroy beauty itself and its meaning. Such an attitude of absolute purity of art makes painting pure color, sculpture pure form and architecture pure space. We are missing the narrative role of art, its power of telling stories, and to be understood by people, normal people. The risk of contemporary art is to be self-centered and self-referential.�

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“THE CHURCH IS IMMERSED IN THE CULTURE SHE IS LIVING IN, so even from the liturgical point of view we have different attitude: some are invoking the tradition, others want to be contemporary and cut the figurative and narrative representation. I think both attitudes make sense (and can be useful), but the best option would be to go “forward in tradition”. This is a coherent approach with the Christian tradition; that is, we should study always to go deeper in knowledge, not forgetting the lessons from the past. But we should also be open to new way of thinking, new media and new ways of expressing the mystery.” “At the moment we are not selling through galleries or online sources; we work on commission. But we are open to new opportunities. We started only three years ago. And thank God, we have many commissions. Sacred Art School and our teachers have so far sold works in Italy, USA, Chile, Nigeria, Zaire, Spain, England and Sri Lanka.” Giancarlo Polenghi

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“IN OUR SCHOOL WE HAVE STUDENTS FROM MANY PLACES. This variety enables us to be aware of different styles, needs, tradition and tastes. I believe that the market has always been interested in figurative art, maybe now more people are working on that, offering quality products.”

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“The gap between the public and an incomprehensible art has reached a point of tiredness. We have seen so much that we now realize that Newness is less interesting than Originality -- and that comes from the word Origin.�

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The New

Avant Garde Article by: Beverly De Soto Photo Credit: Megan Byrne

Michael John Angel is an Englishman who’s been living in Florence for decades. He is also the founder of Angel Academy of Art, Florence, one of a few Florentine academies once again teaching the fine art of representation painting. Today, Angel Academy and its fellows are the new avant-garde in the art world – a wellkept secret in the big money world of art collectors and dealers specializing in ‘modern’ or ‘conceptual’ art. The truth is, however, that after a hiatus of almost a century, painters are once again being trained in the classical art tradition that most of us associate with the ‘Old Masters.’

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“Nowadays, an unsuccessful painting by Rembrandt (and he painted many bad paintings, along with his great ones) sells for millions on the strength of his name alone, whereas a great Rembrandt that has been removed from the oeuvre (such as the dynamite Man with the Golden Helmet) plummets in price. It is absurd. It’s the same painting.” – MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL (Artist’s Assistant by Anthony Velazquez)

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MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL: I studied representational painting in Florence, apprenticed to the great Pietro Annigoni for nearly four years in the late 1960s. At this time, Annigoni was painting a fresco, The Deposition and Resurrection of Christ, in the church at Ponte Buggianese, about 50 kilometres west of Florence. Also at this time, Annigoni was painting the portraits of the Shah and Fara Diba of Iran and his second portrait of Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain (commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery, London). REGINA: What prompted you to start the Angel Academy? MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL: As an art student, desperate to learn how to paint representational paintings, I was very much aware of the paucity of such training in the universities and art colleges. Realising that such training can be taught today, step by step, just as it was in the 19th century, Lynne Barton and I founded the Angel Academy of Art, Florence, in 1997. Before this, I was briefly co-director with Daniel Graves at the Florence Academy of Art. REGINA: It seems as if the suppression of the age-old artistic instinct of man to create representation art has been nearly complete in the intellectual West for over a hundred years. As an artist and a teacher, can you speculate on why this might be? MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL: There are many reasons. Initially, economically, the art dealers needed a more affordable painting to offer to larger markets than those who could afford established Academy paintings (Millais, for example, was receiving £35,000 a year, Sargent between 30,000 and 40,000; Meissonier was paid 50,000 francs per painting—this at a time when a police inspector or a shop clerk made £100 a year). The middle-middle and the lower-middle classes were a growing market. These less expensive paintings did not require such intensive training to produce, and over a few generations, the academic discipline fell away. The Art Establishment, no longer al corrente with the aspects of good representational painting, could only disparage it. REGINA: It seems that interest in representational art and in learning its techniques has been slowly gathering steam for the last two decades and is now in fact very much on the rise. MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL: This is definitely my experience. Since the beginning of time, people have drawn representational images on the cave walls—there is something basic in us that drives this. Naturally, as time progresses, one wants to get better and better at it, as one does with everything else. As more and more people see that this fine old art is being taught again, and taught effectively, they want to learn it. REGINA: Are there galleries or online sources where buyers can find this work? MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL: There are many galleries that specialise in representational art, but the artist must research his/her markets: what sells well in the southwestern states of the U.S. (The Working Cowboy, The Noble Indian) will not sell in New York; what sells in Germany (a little kinky) will not sell in Chicago. To find these galleries, one must look to magazines that specialise in representational painting—Fine Art Connoisseur, and American Art Collector, for example. The galleries advertise in these. There is also Google, of course.

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“FLORENCE WAS THE CRADLE OF THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE, the rebirth of realism, back in the 1400s, and it seemed fitting that we should have this new rebirth here too. Besides, I’ve lived here since 1989.” – Michael John Angel 228 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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“Now the art world has gone full circle, and it is the once affordable work that is touted as the best and is the most expensive.” MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL (Steve Bond by MJ Angel) 230 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

“ANOTHER FACTOR IS THE LACK OF PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE REPRESENTATIONAL ARTS; in the old days, it was a part of everybody’s normal schooling. Without an education in representational painting, one cannot know where the difficulties lie, nor talk about it intelligently.” - MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL (Capriccio ceiling by Michael John Angel) Photo Credit: Megan Byrne

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The New Avant Garde

“SINCE THE 19TH-CENTURY ROMANTIC MOVEMENT, the emphasis has been more and more on the importance of the artist, and less and less on the importance of the work of art itself until, in the 21st century, there is often no work of art at all, as with Conceptual Art.� -- MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL Photo Credit: M. John Angel

REGINA: Are churches buying sacred representational art? MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL: Several of our alumni have produced work for various churches: Losana Boyd and Llewellyn Matthews have just finished a joint commission and Martinho Correia painted an Anastasis a couple of years ago. Also, Jason Arkles, an American sculptor resident in Florence, has sculpted many figures for various churches. For further information please go to 232 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

REPRESENTATIONAL ART ENCOURAGES DISCUSSION: “How effective is the form-modelling, the proportions, the illusion of space? How are the counterpoints, the fugues, the field-colour harmonies, and how do these serve the narrative? Abstract art is meaningless, and therefore anybody can discuss it.” MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL (Mantodea by Cesar Santos)

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“The larger art world is still entrenched in the abstract and the fashionable. We are the avant-garde. Fortunately, the dinosaurs are dying out. Representational painting has come a long way in the last 30 years.” – Michael John Angel (Photo: Matthew Grabelsky with his painting of the Laocoon) Photo Credit: Nancy Fletcher 234 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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“By and large, the churches are not buying sacred art, although there are exceptions. I think a large part of the problem is that the churches and their parishioners do not know that such work is being done again.� - MICHAEL JOHN ANGEL (Altarpiece depicting St Francis by Mr Angel) Photo Credit: Mary Jo Zingale

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“The modern philosophers say that they do not like the idea of everlasting punishment in the other world. Let them rest content. They have created everlasting punishment in this world.” —G.K. CHESTERTON

Call toll-free 800-343-2425 or book online at Use coupon code REGINAFREE at checkout.


Join the American Chesterton Society today and receive a free copy of St. Thomas Aquinas. Membership entitles you to 20% off books and merchandise and 8 issues of GILBERT magazine.

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Free HERE 238 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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Ar In the Serv


Two American artists living in Florence, having re decided to work together to produce a master co roque masterpiece painted by Claudio Coello in 1 painting is to focus on art in service of the Church. this objective as ultimately the work is not about t give glory to God.  Sacred art of this kind has a lon transform lives.  While contemporary art has moved resurgence of interest in sacred a

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rt vice of the


ecently graduated from Angel Academy of Art, opy of the “The Triumph of St. Augustine,� a Ba1664.  As Catholic artists, their purpose for this Art produced in collaboration directly supports the individual artists but on the power of art to ng and rich historical tradition and the power to d away from this historical basis, today there is a art based on realist principles.

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In a daring voyage of self-discovery, two women leave their lives in NYC and Seattle to studying painting in breath-taking Florence, Italy. Here, they discover their ability to make beautiful Catholic art modeled on the Old Masters. On the way, one of them – fascinated by the life and work of St Francis of Assisi – becomes Catholic. In this intimate REGINA Interview, Losana Boyd (l) and Llewelyn Matthews explore this unexpected turn in their lives.

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REGINA: Tell us about yourselves and what drew you to begin studying art in Florence. LLEWELLYN: I was born of American parents in Venezuela and where I lived until I was eleven. Most recently I am from Washington State where I worked as an attorney for many years. LOSANA: I am American, born in New Jersey, brought up in Florida.  Previously, I was co-founder and owner of a boutique public relations company specializing in health care. LLEWELLYN: After studying drawing part-time with Juliette Aristides in Seattle WA for several years, I decided I wanted a change in my life and wanted to seriously study realistic art.  I had visited Italy a number of times to study art and was drawn to Florence in particular.  I also felt it was time to act on a long-held desire to convert to Catholicism. I had been very impressed with the story and message of St Francis after visiting Assisi. A turning point was a trip that included a visit to the tomb of St Francis and being moved that his disciples loved him so much, they wished to be buried with him. LOSANA: I had begun to study representational painting while living in New Jersey in the mid-1990s.  In 2002 I came back to the Church soon after my son, Dom Ambros, now an ordained priest, converted to the faith. In 2005, I moved to New York City, where I studied poetry in the Hunter College MFA program and worked for a time for a Catholic magazine. Then, in 2011, I made the decision to return to the full-time study of art by moving to Florence, Italy and beginning a three-year course in realist painting based on classical principles.

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ON CONVERTING TO CATHOLICISM: “I had gone to the basilica in Assisi for the art and realized the power of art to transform.  At that point religious art and Catholicism were inextricably linked for me. I wanted both.”

-- Llewellyn Matthews

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“My experience as an art student in Florence was both joyful and challenging.  It was the fruit of a long-held dream, but there were many moments of doubt about giving up a secure career and lifestyle in the US for an unknown.” -- LLEWELLYN MATTHEWS 

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“Especially in the modern age, we seem to have a deep need for classical beauty, probably because it is largely unmet by the culture we live in, and artists are particularly sensitive to this longing.�

-- Losana Boyd 248 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

“For spiritual sustenance, I relied heavily on the Mass and Rosary. I learned so much in those three years. The work seemed almost impossibly daunting at first, and yet, through persistence and effort and the watchful eyes of my instructors, I began to develop the skills I was seeking as an artist – Losana Boyd REGINA: Why do you think there are so many people seriously studying representational art now, after a century of modernism? LLEWELLYN: It is clear that interest in art and making art based on realistic principles is growing by leaps and bounds.  The Art Renewal Center (ARC) had only a handful of qualified schools listed a decade ago but now the organization lists almost 50 around the world.  LOSANA:  For too long the art world has been overly concerned with “self expression.” Serious painters know that significant time must first be spent cultivating solid skills. This means long hours studying models, drawing and correcting, making copies, working out underlying anatomical structures. LLEWELLYN:  This new interest may be driven by a desire to meet the challenge of understanding the almost lost methods to create realistic art.  At the same time, I think artists engaging in this journey recognize it is not about re-creating the Renaissance; rather, these concepts will be used to produce art that speaks to our times.

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“My experience as an art student in Florence was both joyful and challenging.  It was the fruit of a long-held dream, but there were many moments of doubt about giving up a secure career and lifestyle in the US for an unknown.” -- LLEWELLYN MATTHEWS 

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CLAUDIO COELLO’S THE TRIUMPH OF ST. AUGUSTINE   “The saint is seen ascending over a beautiful landscape towards an intensely blue sky, accompanied in his ascent by Rubenesque angels carrying his bishops’ crozier. As he points to heaven with his right hand, the saint observes his now defeated enemies..upon which an archangel is bearing down with his sword of fire.” (from the Prado guide)   “The original was painted in 1664 for the Augustinian monastery in Acalá de Henares, and has been on display in Madrid’s Museo del Prado since 1836. With its exuberant color, sweeping curves and plentiful sacred geometry, Coello’s masterpiece vividly renders the victory of the great St. Augustine over the evils of both paganism and demonism.” – Losana Boyd 252 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

REGINA: What prompted you to work as a team on this painting? LOSANA: I had been looking for a St. Augustine image to copy. Our Maestro has encouraged us very much to make copies of great works of art to keep developing our skills, and to continue to do so throughout our careers. I found an image of this painting by Coello and decided this was the one. I chose a 70 by 50 cm canvas (the original is 271 by 203 cm) and had begun to get the drawing in, when my friend Llewellyn stopped by one evening and suggested that I should go bigger. She offered to help me paint the angels’ faces if I would start again on a larger canvas. I thought about it and decided she was right-- the painting really ought to be bigger.  Then I thought perhaps we could work on this together as a joint project, not just angel’s faces, but the whole process from selecting the canvas to choosing the frame, and Llewellyn agreed. REGINA: What has the experience been like for both of you? LOSANA: The process was great and we really worked well as a team. At first, we divided up the tasks; I worked everything from the figure of St. Augustine to the left and Llewellyn worked the architecture and everything to the right. It was an added benefit that I am left-handed and Llewellyn is right-handed! Toward the end, we both worked everywhere, helping each other where we saw things that needed doing, and striving to create unity. LLEWELLYN: The experience was amazing.  We were trying to understand Coello’s intent not only for the subject matter but how he intended the painting to look.  Paintings have a lifespan and change appearance over the centuries. Varnish can yellow and darken.  Did the artist take this into account or not?  Did he paint thinking it would always look the same or did he paint more vibrantly anticipating the inevitable aging?  If so are we trying to capture a more vibrant version of the painting when it was first finished or what it looks like now? How do we address that something that might look right in the large original but might not translate well to our smaller format?  Also Coello changed his mind about some elements of the painting and painted over earlier work.  As the paint thinned with age, these underlying corrections became visible.  Do we include the now visible corrections or not?   Perhaps obscure questions, but fascinating for us as artists. LOSANA: Consulting with each other throughout the process on all the elements of hue, value and chroma, architectural and anatomical integrity was immensely beneficial.  For example, at an early stage in the painting, Llewellyn researched pigments that were available during Coello’s lifetime and we modified our palette to incorporate these.

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REGINA: What is the painting's destination?   LOSANA: The painting has been presented to the Canonry of St. Leopold, a community of Augustinian Canons Regular of St Augustine, and an apostolate of Stift Klosterneuburg, Austria. LLEWELLYN: As it was a copy, there was not really room for personal ego; rather the challenge was to try to get into the mind of this great master. LOSANA: Years ago, teams of painters produced a great deal of the individual canvases we see in museums. As our Maestro explained, “when Rubens signed his name to a canvas, he was in fact approving all of the work that had been done on that painting in his studio, by a team of painters.” REGINA: What do you see as the future for representative art? LOSANA: The prospects are very good. Increasingly, people seem to be drawn to works of a more classical nature...and our Catholic churches in America are for the most part in need of quality sacred images. As Catholic artists, our work is to give Glory to God. Ideally, the artist should disappear and the work itself should help viewers contemplate the great glory of our faith. Artworks that make too much of the artist distract from this more profound purpose.  LLEWELLYN: Also for me, this project was an opportunity to try out a fledgling idea of trying to bring religious art based on traditional methods to portray realism to institutions in the US that lack such art.  Great art that has the power to move a person spiritually can be found all over Europe but rarely so in the US.  Ultimately I hope to form an organization to promote such art.

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“As it was a copy, there was not really room for personal ego; rather the challenge was to try to get into the mind of this great master.�

Regina Magazine



ocated in the heart of France on the banks of the Creuse River, the ancient walls of Fontgombault hark back to the peak of medieval Christendom, its breathtaking beauty and the simplicity of monastic life. The abbey has stood the test of time, and today is the site of frequent pilgrimages, including a forthcoming one lead by REGINA Magazine’s Nina Jurewicz. She recently spoke with staff writer Meghan Ferrara about the monastery and her approaching venture.

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Introducing a New Generation to

Fontgombault Abbey Article By: Meghan Ferrara Photo Credits: Robindch via Wikipedia Commons and Nina Jurewicz

Regina Magazine



ontgombault is like nothing and nowhere else on Earth,” says Nina Jurewicz, an American who now makes her home in Australia. “When you are there, you never want to leave. It is always with a heavy heart when the time comes to get into the car and drive off. When you walk into the Abbey’s massive stone church, you are transported to the monastic tradition in its purest Benedictine form. This

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is so truly ‘foreign’ from what 99% of Catholics in the Church Militant today have experienced, because we all have grown up with the faith in a parish. A traditional, contemplative religious community is not a parish - it’s a community of men (or women) who have taken vows and spend most of their days praying for the conversion of souls worldwide.” The inspiration for Nina’s upcoming trip to Fontgombault began the

FONTGOMBAULT IS TODAY THE MOST POPULOUS OF SOLESMES' FOUNDATIONS, with over a hundred monks. It has three foundations in France — Randol Abbey in 1971, Triors Abbey in 1984, and Gaussan Priory in 1994 — as well as Clear Creek Abbey in the United States in 1999.

Watkinsons’ dream to found a traditional, contemplative monastery in Australia. This tradition, which plays such an integral role in the life of the church, does not exist in Australia and the Watkinsons wanted to change that.“A monastery is greatly needed as a ‘prayer engine’ to ‘power’ and channel graces that are so desperately required for the conversion of souls,” Nina explains. “We just decided to do this by the grace of God as a

grassroots effort. So through local connections and the referrals of clergy and families, we have made plans with a small group of young men who are discerning their vocations to travel to several monasteries in the US and France, so that they may experience the life there. The monastic life can only be understood by visiting monasteries. It is just too abstract to read about it in a book - you have to GO!”

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Fontgombault Abbey

Nina has many hopes for what these men will gain from this trip. It will be an excellent opportunity for them to discern their vocations in life. The group will also pray that the establishment of a contemplative community in Australia comes to fruition. There are many conditions that must first be met and such an endeavor will require much time, effort and prayer before it is realized. For Nina, this pilgrimage also highlights the importance of monastic life. Fontgombault and other similar cloistered, monastic communities perform the essential work of hidden prayer.

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“This ‘work’ of prayer is not only as important as the active apostolic work in the Church but, in some respects, even more important for the success of the New Evangelization,” she says, pointing out that such prayerful vocations are vital for two key reasons. The first is that, “Prayer is the primary and most necessary means of converting sinners and bringing souls to Christ. It is the fruit of Divine grace acting directly in a soul. Without this grace from God, all our preaching, admonishing, and penance and ready forgiveness is useless.” The second, equally important reason

IT MUST BE SAID THAT TRADITIONAL MONASTERIES ARE THE LIFEBLOOD OF THE CHURCH. Not only do they preserve Catholic heritage but pilgrimages to places such as Fontgombault help strengthen the Body of Christ and Holy Mother Church through meditation and prayer.

is because, “Monastic life is the highest form of Christian life; and the cultural witness and personal holiness of monks and monastic sisters guide and animate the building of a Christian civilization.” • Before joining Regina Magazine, Nina Jurewicz graduated with an MBA from Harvard University and worked in enterprise technology sales and professional services for over twenty years. Nina has been working to help REGINA clients reach their audiences using the Magazine, Website and Facebook Page’s original content and organic audience growth. She can be reached here.

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Originally established in 1091 by Pierre de l'Étoile, the Benedictine monastery thrived in the 12th and 13th centuries, leading to the formation of twenty priories.

• In 1569, Calvinist Protestants demolished the church, which was not rebuilt until the end of seventeenth century by Dom Andrieu. • The Lazarist community replaced the Benedictines in 1741, establishing a seminary there. During the French Revolution, the property suffered destruction when it was nationalized and sold off. • The Trappists reinstituted the building as an abbey in 1849. • In 1905, they were expelled from France under the Association Laws and the monastery was secularized and sold a second time. • During World War I, the abbey was used as a military hospital by the Belgian army. • From 1919 to 1948, the structure was employed as a diocesan seminary after which members of Solesmes Abbey restored it to its original role as a Benedictine community.

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REGINA’s unique business model is to present our

advertisers with the highest quality Catholic audience in the world. Our articles are geared towards Catholics who care deeply about Catholic culture. If this is your target market, chances are they are now discovering REGINA. So click HERE to learn more about REGINA! 264 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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Behind Convent Walls Designing for the New California Norbertines

Interview By:

Photo Credit:

REGINA Magazine

Sequoia Sierra


ike many Orders that abandoned their charisms after Vatican II, the Norbertines in Western Europe are today largely a thing of the past. In sharp contrast, the rebirth in the traditional Catholic Orders continues to gather steam in the United States Among these is a new establishment of active Norbertine Sisters in Wilmington, California. Originally founded in 1902 in Svatý Kopeček, Czech Republic, they now minister to the poor, teach religious education and work in the book store and parish office of Saints Peter and Paul Church there. These California Norbertines’ young postulants are now wearing uniforms designed by REGINA Style & Fashion Editor, Los Angeles-based Sequoia Sierra. Here Sequoia discusses the challenges – and the joys – of this innovative design commission.

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THE ORDER OF CANONS REGULAR OF PRÉMONTRÉ, also known as the Premonstratensians, the Norbertines and, in Britain and Ireland, as the White Canons, were founded in Prémontré near Laon in 1120 by Saint Norbert. Abbey pictured here is La Lucerne Abbey (Manche). Photo from: Wikipedia Commons

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SAINT NORBERT WAS A FRIEND OF THE FAMOUS SAINT BERNARD OF CLAIRVAUX and was influenced by the Cistercian ideals on the manner of life and the government of his Order. Pictured here is Sainte-Marie-au-Bois Abbey (Meurthe-et-Moselle), one of dozens of Norbertine abbeys in France, now largely moribund or in the hands of the French state.

REGINA: Sequoia, this was not a typical design commission, right? What was it like? Sequoia: This was an incredible and profoundly moving experience to have been asked to design this particular uniform, as this is the first postulant's uniform for this branch/new establishment of active Norbertine Sisters in the United States. Having the honor of being a part of their history, at the very beginning of them establishing themselves here in the U.S. is an experience that will always be very special and dear to my heart. It was the experience of a lifetime! REGINA: Did the sisters have a clear idea of what they wanted? Sequoia: Somewhat, though typically it's easier to identify what one doesn't want in a design like this and then go from there, and that's basically what we did. REGINA: What were your inspirations for creating these? Sequoia: I drew inspiration from the traditions of the Norbertine order of having the postulants wear black, but then I did research on "vintage" postulant uniforms and habits to draw inspiration from them. 270 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

“The greatest challenge was creating a uniform that would be flattering to all body types and that would have a timeless style to it. That way in 30, 40, or even 50 years from now it would still be wearable as a postulant's uniform, and one that is in continuity with all the traditions of postulant's uniforms from the past.” – Sequoia Sierra

These uniforms also have simple black jackets that are worn for Mass and formal occasions that have five buttons on them, designed to remind the postulant of the five marks of the Norbertine Order:

• Solemn and Reverential Celebration of the Sacred Liturgy in Choir • Devotion to the Holy Eucharist • Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary • A Spirit of Penance • Zeal for Souls

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“THERE IS A LOT OF SYMBOLISM in religious and liturgical garments. For this design, the black color of the postulants’ uniform signifies the postulant's death to the world and to self. It is stark contrast to the white habit they will receive when they make their first profession. “ – Sequoia Sierra 272 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

Behind Convent Walls

REGINA: Was sourcing the materials a problem? Sequoia: Not really, sourcing the fabrics was only moderately difficult in that I wanted to make sure that multiple washes would not make the uniforms look too faded since they will undergo much wear. Unlike other more delicate liturgical items, it had to be washable, sturdy, and durable, but comfortable and sharp as well.

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CONTACT INFO: Norbertine Sisters 943 Lagoon Avenue Wilmington, California 907 44 Email: Telephone: +1 310 952 0144 Web: www.premonstratky.s Contact Sequoia Sierra here

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A child of the Sixties, she hiked the Way of St James alone.


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Photo Credits: Duncan G. Stroik, Architect, LLC

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Sensibility The Struggle To Bring Beauty Back To Catholic Churches By Beverly De Soto Duncan G. Stroik is an American architect, Professor of Architecture at the University of Notre Dame School of Architecture and founding editor of the Sacred Architecture Journal. He has dedicated his life and practice to bringing classical beauty back to Catholic places of worship, and has executed ground-breaking projects around America.

In this exclusive REGINA Magazine interview, this far-seeing architect and editor discusses what’s happening today, at the cultural nexus where Catholic culture and architecture meet.

REGINA: Do you think that Catholic Church architecture is at a turning point today? DUNCAN STROIK: The laity under 60 (and some over 60) are interested in an architecture rich in meaning, symbolism and history. They would like to reconnect with the great Catholic tradition and want churches to look like churches. The younger clergy even more so, and they tend to be somewhat knowledgeable about art and architecture, so their tastes are often more refined.

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Sacramental Sensibility “I am most happy that Sacred Architecture has spearheaded the discussion of many topics that were considered verboten in the 1980’s.” – Duncan Stroik (Photo: St. Mary Church in Norwalk, CT interior restoration and new retablo, 2014) REGINA: Where do you find the greatest support for this? DUNCAN STROIK: Two places: first, faithful Catholics who recognize that art and architecture, like theology and morals, are not created in a vacuum but are part of a long tradition. Secondly, most people with a visual sense, unless they have been brainwashed by studies in art history, prefer beauty and durability over ugliness and ephemerality. Unfortunately, we are all bombarded with transient images on our phones, computers and TVs, and many people don’t have the patience to notice Sacramental Sensibility The Struggle To Bring Beauty Back To Catholic Churches architecture. REGINA: From whence does the impetus for this movement arise? DUNCAN STROIK: The pontificates of John Paul II and Benedict XVI offered a positive appraisal of traditional piety, devotion and liturgy. As people embraced those things, including Eucharistic adoration, they saw the congruence with the arts. John Paul II’s Letter to Artists and Benedict XVI’s Spirit of the Liturgy (among others) are great examples of Papal documents which inspire new art and architecture which respects the tradition. Another factor is a natural tiredness for a dated architecture by the younger generations, and a desire for something with more depth, solemnity or mystery (which was generally missing). REGINA: Is this extending outside the US, to your knowledge? DUNCAN STROIK: The laity in other countries have a sacramental sensibility just like Catholics in the U.S. However, they do not see their role as having any say in art and architecture. That is left up to the elites, as it has been for centuries. REGINA: What is the roadblock, exactly? DUNCAN STROIK: The biggest roadblock in the U.S., as in other countries, is financial. Modernism taught us to focus on the lowest cost and the lowest common denominator. We are not used to giving sacrificially or paying for quality design, materials, and construction in the church. So, we would rather have an inexpensive bad copy than a new work of art that takes time and a lot of money. We will never produce a new Michelangelo, Bernini, or Fra Angelico for the Church if we only care about the bottom line. In a sense, it is the same in architecture, where people try to save 1 or 2 % on an architect’s fee. This doesn’t make sense when they are spending millions of dollars on a building which will be there for 50 to 100 years – it is better to spend a little more on a better architect than to sacrifice the quality of the building. We have become penny wise, and so have the bishops. REGINA: You founded a journal on church architecture, which you have been editing for 15 years. What do you think have been your primary accomplishments with Sacred Architecture? DUNCAN STROIK: I would like to think that the journal has shown that it is possible to build beautifully once again. Through essays on history and theology and critiques we have sought to offer a venue for the important discussion about what makes church art and architecture. Whether one agrees with the journal or not, and there are many views published there, I think it is hard to ignore it. I think of a letter I received many years ago from a prelate asking me to cancel his subscription because he did not agree with the Journal. The following week, his head of diocesan public relations sent in a subscription for two years.

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Photo credit: Harry Stevens

Photo credit: D Architect, LLC

“THE CULTURAL ELITES IN MOST COUNTRIES ARE THOROUGHLY COMMITTED TO ICONOCLASM and what Robert Hughes calls “The Shock of the New.” They continue to build industrial-looking sheds or contorted abstract sculptures while the people vote with their feet.” – Duncan Stroik (Photo: University of Paris by Harry Stevens, 2014)

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Duncan G. Stroik

“THE CHALLENGE IS THAT ARCHITECTURAL EDUCATION AND PRACTICE HAS NOT EDUCATED MOST ARCHITECTS in the tradition and in timeless principles, so even where well-meaning, the results are not in keeping with past quality. Architects have to become self-educated, and to do that they have to believe in what they are doing. If not, we are left with half-baked traditionalism which in the long run is not much better than mediocre modernism.” Duncan Stroik, here pictured with Bishop Paul Swain and the committee for the restoration of the Cathedral of Saint Joseph.

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“THERE’S A REDISCOVERY OF THE GREAT TRADITION, due to travel and museum visits – as people explore the world through the internet, books, and travel, they become aware of amazing buildings and cities that seemed distant and unattainable in the past. There are few modernist churches which are seen as tourist draws, while the great cathedrals of Europe receive thousands of visitors each year.” – Duncan Stroik (Photo of Basilica at Pompei, Italy 2015 by Beverly De Soto)

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“DIOCESES MAKE IT DIFFICULT FOR NORMAL PARISHES TO AFFORD A NICE CHURCH, in part because they require that it be paid off in five years. Imagine what kind of house you could afford if that is what the banks required.” – Duncan Stroik (PHOTO of New organ case at the Cathedral of Saint Paul, Minnesota - completed 2013) Photo credit: Cathedral of Saint Paul, Tim Schindler

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“THE CENTRALITY OF THE TABERNACLE, the generous use of iconography, the design in classical and medieval styles, the nave church, transcendence, beauty, durability, and of course our title “sacred architecture” have become popularized and are even employed by those who twenty years ago would have been embarPhoto Duncan G. Stroik Architect, LLC 288 credit: Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

rassed to use these terms. Much success has been accomplished and it is my view that we have been fortunate to participate in some of it, and promote it to a broad readership.” – Duncan Stroik (Photo: Saint Joseph Cathedral, Sioux Falls, SD - interior restoration under Bishop Swain, completed 2011)




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What Catholic Businesses Need Using Soci

Part I

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c Orders and to Know About ial Media

Part II

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Eyewitness: Pilgrimage in York, England In honour of the Martyr Saint Margaret Clitherow, Wife and Mother

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Essay by Michael Durnan Photo Credits: Michael Durnan Joseph Shaw

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IN RECENT YEARS, THE LATIN MASS SOCIETY OF ENGLAND AND WALES has held an annual national pilgrimage to the northern English city of York, the county town of Yorkshire. The pilgrimage is held in honour of the great English Catholic Martyr, St. Margaret Clitherow. I attended this pilgrimage for the first time in 2013.

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THE CHOICE OF DAY FOR THE PILGRIMAGE COULD HARDLY HAVE BEEN MORE SUITABLE as it was held on the 4th of May, the Feast of The English Catholic Martyrs.

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YORK IS ONE OF ENGLAND’S MOST HISTORIC AND PICTURESQUE CITIES. The Pilgrimage started with Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form at St. Wilfrid’s, which stands in the shadow of its more-famous, ancient and impressive neighbouring church, York Minster.

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AT THE T KNOWL LATIN M but I had St. Marg

TIME, MY EXPERIENCE AND LEDGE OF THE TRADITIONAL MASS WAS SKETCHY and limited, d a firm knowledge and grasp of garet Clitherow’s story.

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EVERYTHING ABOUT THE MASS WAS BEAUTIFUL, DIGNIFIED AND SPIRITUALLY UPLIFTING; from the accomplished singing of The Rudgate Singers, the vestments of the clergy to the perfumed fragrance of the incense liberally wafted and dispensed by the servers. TIME SEEMED TO GO QUICKLY, though the Mass was nearly ninety minutes in duration; I rarely found my attention span being fatigued. Even though at times I found following the order of the mass a mystifying and baffling experience -- because of my unfamiliarity with the Latin, the difference in structure from the Ordinary Form and it being a longer duration in time -- I was still entranced and moved by its beauty and depth. MY MIND RARELY WANDERED, nor did it become distracted by more humdrum thoughts or earthly cares.

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ONE LADY WHO WAS VISITING FROM PERTH, AUSTRALIA, happened to enter St Wilfrid’s Church just as the Gospel was about to be sung, was amazed at the sight of a Traditional Mass, saying that nothing like that ever took place in her home diocese.

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Eyewitness Pilgrimage in York, England

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THE SIGHT OF PILGRIMS PROCESSING THROUGH THE BUSY STREETS OF YORK past Saturday shoppers always draws people’s attention and is an important public witness to the Catholic Faith.

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Eyewitness Pilgrimage in York, England


its way through the historic streets of York to English Martyrs Church via one of its most ancient and picturesque thoroughfares, ‘The Shambles.’ The procession was headed by young men carrying a statue of St. Margaret Clitherow, and we stopped outside the Saint’s house which is preserved as a Shrine and place of prayer, though we did not enter as our numbers were too large to be accommodated comfortably.

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Eyewitness Pilgrimage in York, England

SO, WE PAUSED OUTSIDE AND PRAYED out loud amid the curious but respectful shoppers and tourists. I felt rather self-conscious, and not to say out of my comfort zone as a Catholic, to be engaging in such as public act of worship and devotion amidst the crowds on a busy Saturday in a major tourist destination but I suppose that is part of the reason for undertaking a public pilgrimage to bear witness for our Faith. ANY CONCERNS OR SELF-CONSCIOUS PRE-OCCUPATIONS WERE SOON DISPELLED when I thought of that last terrible journey that St. Margaret Clitherow undertook, barefoot through the streets of York that would end in a slow and painful martyrdom. My ordeal was nothing compared to hers and anyway, we met with no hostility or ridicule, just puzzled, but respectful, silent gazes and curiosity.

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OUR JOURNEY PRESSED ONWARDS ACROSS THE OUSE BRIDGE where a plaque has been placed by York Civic Trust to commemorate the spot where St. Margaret Clitherow was so cruelly martyred in 1586.

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WE ARRIVED THERE FOR BENEDICTION and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. The Rudgate Singers once again sang and this time it was Adoremus in Aeternum by Gregorio Allegri. The congregation recited the Prayer for England which opens with: O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our most gentle Queen and Mother, look down upon England, thy dowry, and upon us all who greatly hope and trust in thee‌ We concluded with the singing of the rousing martyrs’ hymn, Faith of Our Fathers, by Frederick William Faber.

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IT WAS A DAY OF FIRSTS FOR ME – attending a Solemn Sung High Mass of The Extraordinary Form and my first walking procession through the streets since I was a young boy. Unknown to me then, the priest who celebrated the mass that day was Canon Amaury Montjean of the Institute of Christ The King Sovereign Priest, who is based at The Dome of Home in New Brighton. When the ICRSP took over the pastoral care of St. Walburge’s Church in Preston in late September of 2014, my York pilgrimage would inspire me to attend their opening Solemn High Mass. I have since joined its choir and sing there every Sunday and on major Feast Days.

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CORPUS CHRISTI in a German Wine Village Article By:

Beverly De Soto

Photo Credit:

Harry Stevens

The Feast of Corpus Christi (Latin for Body of Christ), also known as corpus domini, celebrates Catholic tradition and belief in the body and blood of Jesus Christ and His Real Presence in the Eucharist. Here. the village band arrives for Mass under the festooned grape vines.

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BY TRADITION, CATHOLICS IN GERMANY’S FAMOUS RHINE VALLEY take part in a Corpus Christi procession through the cobblestone streets near their parish church following Mass. 312 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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Corpus Christi in a German Wine Village

EVEN THOSE UNACCUSTOMED TO CHURCH-GOING will make it a point to attend Mass on Corpus Christi. Like most Catholics, however, they are likely to have no idea what it is about.

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LOCAL FIFE & DRUM CORPS FORMS AN HONOR GUARD FOR THE BLESSED SACRAMENT: Juliana of Liège, a 13th-century Norbertine canoness, is said to be the originator. Orphaned at the age of five, Juliana was entrusted to the care of the Augustinian nuns at the convent and leprosarium of Mont-Cornillon, where she developed a special veneration for the Blessed Sacrament.

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IN 1208, JULIANA REPORTED HER FIRST VISION OF CHRIST in which she was instructed to plead for the institution of the feast of Corpus Christi. Juliana’s vision was repeated for the next 20 years but she kept it secret until she eventually told her confessor. He relayed it to the bishop, who instituted the feast in Belgium. More than 100 years later, in 1317, it became a universal feast of the Church.

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THE CORPUS CHRISTI HYMNS SUNG ALL OVER THE WORLD ARE THE WORK OF ST. THOMAS AQUINAS, the great Catholic theologian. Called the ‘Angelic’ Doctor of the Church, Aquinas was an Italian who lived, wrote and taught in the 1200s. 318 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

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‘JESUS MY LOVE’ ON A CATHOLIC FAMILY FRONT DOOR STEP: The last two verses of Pange Lingua are the Tantum Ergo, sung at the Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. 320 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

SADLY, MOST OF THE LAITY IN THE PROCESSION ARE QUITE OLD, as Germany’s Church labors under the deleterious effects of decades of progressivism: declining population, apostasy and indifference.

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‘HAPPINESS IN FAITH’ on the flower carpet traditional for Corpus Christi before the street altar where the procession halts.

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THE CANONS HAVE ADDED SOLEMNITY TO THE PROCESSION. One canon, or the honored celebrant (Father Scolaro), bears the relic in cope and birettum, assisted by servers, who hold the cope open, hoist the ombrellino or distribute medals and holy cards. 326 Regina Magazine | Sacred Beauty

Saint Rocco in the Streets of New York

Article By:

Photo Credit:

Beverly De Soto

Rocco Ieraci

In the 19th and 20th centuries, the Vatican learnt by experience to address the needs of Catholic emigrants flung far from their homelands by the winds of politics and war. In the New World, the conflicts which not infrequently arose between national groups of immigrants and the Church of Saint Rocco’s origins are a familiar story of misunderstanding between English-speaking Irish-American Catholics and other, later immigrants.


n Glen Cove, Long Island both the Polish and Italian immigrants found difficulties at Saint Patrick, the local territorial parish. This led both to build their own churches, St Hyacinth for the Poles and St Rocco for the Italians.

In the 21st century, things have changed. “While the parish has gradually become more American, it still retains its Italian character insofar as we have a Mass in Italian every Sunday,” says Dom Elias Carr, of the Canons Regular, pastor. The Canons Regular of Saint Augustine of Stift Klosterneuburg, Austria assumed pastoral care of Saint Rocco and Saint Patrick on June 22, 2011, giving them the care of these neighboring and formerly estranged parishes. “As a religious community we have cared for both parishes and since 2012 the regional Catholic school, All Saints, located on the campus of Saint Patrick.” Says Father Elias. The two parishes are a half-mile or so apart, sharing the same territory, Glen Cove and the neighboring villages.

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Canonically erected as an Italian national parish in 1937, St Rocco’s parishioners hailed from all over Italy, though the largest groups came from the towns of Belvedere di Spinello in Calabria and Sturno in Campagna – both agricultural locales far from Italy’s teeming cities. The former especially honored Saint Marina, who once also had a feast in Glen Cove, and the latter were devoted to Saint Rocco, the patron of Sturno. Today many, though certainly not all, of St Rocco’s parishioners descend from these towns.

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In 1975, the former missionary priest and pastor, Father Eligio della Rosa, brought St Rocco’s feast back after having fallen into desuetude.

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“From the start, we have sought to introduce in both parishes (and the school) a God-centered celebration of the Mass as well as to foster a serious life of prayer with a renewal in respect and reverence for the church and the appreciation of the value of silence.�

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“Glen Cove is a close knit community with numerous intergenerational families, setting it apart from the transient nature of most Long Island suburbs. ‘

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WITH A COMMON ARS CELEBRANDI the Canons move seamlessly between the parishes, celebrating Mass and the Sacraments, conducting religious education for all ages. We conduct a weekly adult Bible study, a monthly men’s group, a young adult’s group (Distilled Theology), a book discussion group (currently on Rene Girard’s I See Satan Fall Like Lightning), as well as extensive offerings for the Spanish speaking community (at St Patrick) and occasional catechesis in Italian.

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“Besides the opening Mass on the last Tuesday of July, we have, on the evening before, a special Requiem Mass for deceased feast workers. Forty years is a lot of time and many volunteers.�

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We also invite the Italian prayer groups, a different one each evening, to lead the Rosary or devotions in the church and, more recently, we have added concerts in sacred music.

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Saint Rocco

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The highlight is the Feast Mass – often with a special celebrant (last year this was the newly ordained diocesan priest, Father Joseph Scolaro) – that kicks off the procession. The statue of Saint Rocco is taken on a wagon through the neighborhood, the procession lasting up to three hours in the hot August sun.

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A large and diverse crowd walks all or part of the way, singing Italian hymns (including the Inno di San Rocco composed by Father della Rosa).

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Many people come out of their homes, waiting for the procession to pass by, to venerate the relic, pin money on the statue, ask for Saint Rocco’s intercession, and see their friends and neighbors.

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In a true sense, Saint Rocco comes out of the church to visit his brothers and sisters, showing them that they too can become saints, no matter the challenges and difficulties they face as long as they place their trust in God.

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A Canon makes himself available to anoint the homebound while other canons greet the people and join in the merry-making.

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People participate despite the heat and humidity as an expression of their faith and their pride in their Italian heritage.

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I believe processions including, of course, Corpus Christi processions, give people a chance to express their faith publicly and physically in the world, something that our increasingly small minded and bigoted society wants to deny us. - Fr Elias Carr

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“It is comforting to belong to the Church of Saint Rocco where the members are devout in their faith and their Italian heritage. When we participate in the procession together, it is a reminder that we are bonded by our Catholic faith. As we make our pilgrimage through our community, it calls to mind the reason for celebrating The Feast of Saint Rocco, which is to honor our Patron Saint as well as publicly profess our Catholic faith.� - Pamela Leone, High School Student

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Saint Rocco

“When we visit the homes of the elderly and sick parishioners and our Pastor, Father Elias blesses them with the Relic of St. Rocco, and they see the procession with many of the other parishioners, it gives them a sense of peace and joy knowing of the support in prayers and love from everyone.� - Michael Flynn, college student

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Saint Rocco

“It is a pleasure to be a part of the procession, as it enables the youth to be active in the Church community. We are reminded of the significance of the procession as we greet the elderly and homebound throughout the neighborhood. It is evident in their smiles that they are appreciative of the songs and prayers that have come their way.” - Melissa Leone, High School Student “Every procession has its own special character inasmuch as each people have traditions that have been gradually taken up into the Christian cultural patrimony. By participating in procession, we pay homage and render public recognition to Jesus, to the Blessed Virgin or to the saints, who are borne in the procession. The lights, that is, the candles which are carried in procession, show that we are walking toward the light that is Christ.” - Luigi Greco, Youth Minister “The much anticipated Feast of St Rocco is a true testament to time and tradition. Of course the food is great and the visitors number in the tens of thousands but what ties it all together and puts it into the true context of the meaning of faith is our closing procession. Many things change in our world but the Feast of St. Rocco continues to be a tradition that withstands the tests of time.” - Hon. Reggie Spinello, Mayor of Glen Cove “Our faith is embodied, public and visual as well as spiritual, private and invisible. We are Catholics – we want it all – because it is our right as human beings to express our faith without fear in a fully human manner. Processions give voice to this deep desire.” - Fr Elias Carr, Pastor

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Saint Rocco


ust as it has been done for the past 39 years, this year’s 40th annual feast will celebrate our patron Saint Rocco by processing the statue through the streets of our city as the woman sing and hundreds march behind our loving saint and the resident line the sidewalks to pay homage by offering gifts of money and jewelry which they pin onto the cape of St Rocco which is handmade and the relics reinforced each year by our faithful parishioners who care for the cape.

I have memories of Italy as a small child and how my home town celebrated the feast of Saint Rocco. The entire town would celebrated the feast, People would come from all over just to be a part of it and to enjoy the food, the people, the songs and the devotion to Saint Rocco. Our feast depicts all these things, it is a wonderful celebration. Join us, come see for yourself, spend time in our church. Share in the memories. Rocco Ieraci

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