Tuesday, 25 November 2008

German Trappists Return to Usus Antiquior

by Gregor Kollmorgen

From the website of the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei comes a very important announcement (NLM translation):

The Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei has, on November 21st, 2008, communicated to the Most Reverend Abbot Fr Josef Vollberg O.C.S.O. of the Abbey of Mariawald in Germany (diocese of Aachen) the privilege conceded by the Holy Father of a complete return to the Liturgy and the Observance in use in the Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance (Trappists) until 1963/64.

Fr Abbot Josef Vollberg himself had in fact presented to the Holy Father a plea to be allowed to return to the Liturgy and the Observance according to the "usus" of Monte Cistello (Rome 1964), approved by the Holy See.
This is quite momentous. As far as I am aware, this is the first such instance of a monastic community returning wholesale to the usus antiquior. Not only is this significant in and of itself - after all, they have 14 monks, almost as many as, for instance, the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer (the former Transalpine Redemptorists) , but also in terms of a possible inspiration for other monastic communities/orders to take this step, which is, it bears reminding, expressly foreseen in the Motu Proprio Summorum Pontificum (Art. 3). Lastly, it is excellent that they revive their own rite, which is, if I'm not mistaken, essentially the Cistercian Rite.

To the left you can see the abbey church of Mariawald, to the right Abbot Vollberg with the Holy Father in June this year. The Abbey of Mariawald is the only Trappist monastery in Germany.

(reproduced from The New Liturgical Movement)

[See Rorate Cæli for another report from kreuz.net.]

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Le Barroux Member of Benedictine Confederation

by Gregor Kollmorgen

From September 18th to 27th, 2008, the Congress of Benedictine Abbots took place in Rome. In addition to reelecting Dom Notker Wolf as Abbot Primate of the Benedictins for another four year term, the Confoederatio Benedictina Ordinis Sancti Benedicti, the Benedictine Confederation of the Order of Saint Benedict, admitted to its memembership the Abbey of Sainte-Madeleine du Barroux (it also is listed now on the Confederation's website here). The abbey, which is attached to (a slightly modified form of) the usus antiquior, continues to depend from the Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei. As the source for this news, the website of the French Bishops' Conference, puts it:

This integration manifests that this community pursues its way of belonging to the normal structures of the Church and of fraternal collaboration with the monasteries of the Benedictine family.
This is very welcome news as it is a sign that the Older Use is becoming a normal part of the life of the Church as it rightfully should be.

(reposted from The New Liturgical Movement)

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

First Mass of a Priest of the Institute of the Good Shepherd

A First solemn Mass was celebrated by newly ordained M. l'Abbé Stefano Carusi, IBP, in the Cathedral of Camerino, 18 October 2008, in the presence of His Excellency, Archbishop Francesco Giovanni Brugnaro, Archbishop of Camerino-San Severino Marche, who encouraged the young Priest during his homily.

The Entrance into the Cathedral

The city of Camarino was given to the De Varano family in the 13th Century. The University was founded in 1336. The last of the De Varano were killed under Cesare Borgia in 1502 and by 1545, the city had come within the Papal States. The Archdiocese, elevated to Metropolitan status in 1797 and united with San Severino in 1986, has a splendid number of Sanctuaries honouring Our Lady. Camerino was the cradle of the Capuchin Order.

The Ministers enter the Cathedral

The present Cathedral of Camarino was built in the early 19th Century to replace the Cathedral that had fallen into ruins in 1799, while revolutionary armies swept across Italy. It contains a 13th Century wooden crucifix and a 15th century image of Our Lady of Mercy, as well as the 'Arch of St. Ansovinus', who was bishop of Camerino in the 9th Century.

The Gloria of the Mass

The Episcopal Vicar of Camerino, Msgr. Blanchi, and members of the venerable chapter of the cathedral were also present in choir for the Mass.

The Assistant Priest was Don Francesco Gregori, pastor of the Cathedral; Deacon of the Mass was Don Matteo, IBP; Sub-deacon of the Mass was Don Ugo, IBP; Master of Ceremonies was Giorgio Lenzi, seminarian of the IBP; thurifer was Edward Van der Berg, of the London Oratory.

The Offertory of the Mass

The "Cappella del Duomo" beautifully interpreted the Missa Pontificalis of Perosi, before a crowd of faithful, many members of the Confraternities of the city, and members of the Sovereign Order of Malta.

Knights of Malta

This young Priest was ordained for the Institut du Bon Pasteur, the Institute of the Good Shepherd, which was erected as a Society of Apostolic Live of Pontifical Right on the beautiful feast of the Nativity of Our Lady, 8th September, 2006. In its Statutes, as approved by the Holy See, the Traditional Latin or Gregorian Liturgy is given to the Institute as its proper Rite, not merely an indulgence or exception.

The Ministers after Mass

The Institute has grown in only two years from the five founders to twenty members and about thirty seminarians. The Church of St. Eloi in Bordeaux is the Mother House of the Institute and it has Churches also at the Centre Saint-Paul in Paris, just north of the Louvre, at the Chapel of 'Bon-Jesus' at Marsailles, and two abandoned Parish Churches at Courtalaine and Ramboise, as well as foundations in Chilie, Colombia and Poland.

A Member of the one of the Confraternities of Camarino
Receives the Priest's 'First Blessing'

The Institute maintains two houses of formation, it's Seminary of Saint Vincent de Paul at Courtalain to the South West of Paris, outside Chartres, in a property formerly belonging to the Marquis de Gontaut Biron, and a House of Studies in Rome, close to the Vatican.

Ministers and Acolytes with the Archbishop after Mass

Interestingly, the Marquises de Gontaut Biron are related, through the Princesse de Marnay who married Charles de Gontaut-Biron, Marquis de Gontaut Biron et de Saint-Blancard, in 1837, to Cesare Borgia. However, of greater note is the lineal descent of the House of Gontaut from Geoffroi, Seigneur de Biron in the 12th Century.

The title of Duc du Biron, created in 1598 for Charles de Gontaut, both Marshal and Admiral of France, became extinct by the execution of Armand-Louis de Gontaut who, having participated in the Revolution and commanded an army against the heros of the Vendée, fell victim to the reign of terror. The arms of the House are a simple quartering of red and gold.

The Seminary of Saint Vincent de Paul can be contacted at:

Séminaire Saint Vincent de Paul,
18, place Alexandre Rillié,
28290 Courtalain,

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Carmelite Sisters of the Transfiguration

[Please to note: At the request of the initiators, we give you notice that the Carmelite Sisters of the Transfiguration initiative was unsuccessful and efforts to establish this group have been discontinued.  We maintain this post in the hope that it may inspire others to take up the cause of traditional religious life for women. "Gather up the fragments that remain, lest they be lost." Jn vi, 12 Ed.]

A new initiative in traditional religious life, the Carmelite Sisters of the Transfiguration, as they hope to be called, have established a blog to draw together kindred souls who may wish to be formed in the great Carmelite tradition as a semi-contemplative congregation of sisters devoted both to prayer and to the apostolic work of educating Catholic young ladies.

St. M. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross

One of the inspiriations for their apostolate is the words of St. M. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, known in the world as Edith Stein, in her essay Problems of Womens' Education:

"If we can institute an independent Catholic system of education for girls, we shall be defending in this way not only the threatened position of women in cultural life but also we shall be taking part in the great struggle of the spirit against materialism and biologism in the struggle for Christ's kingdom against all unchristian and anti-Christian movements and trends."

The first step, that of making the decision to begin, has been taken, and the next step of gathering the future sisters into a programme of formation, is envisaged.

The Spiritual Life of the sisters will be grounded in the traditional Divine Office of the Breviarium ordinis fratrum Beatissimae Virginis Mariae de Monte Carmelo and the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite Mass - perhaps the Carmelite Rite one day! Other particular devotions will be the Seven Sorrows of Mary and the Most Holy Rosary.

Carmelite Sisters in Traditional Habit
(not the Sisters of the Transfiguration)*

*A kind visitor has advised us that this photo is actually of the Servant of God, Mother M. Angeline Teresa McCrory, O.Carm., and her Companions. Mother Angeline is the Foundress of the Carmelite Sisters for the Aged and Infirm and her cause for Beatification and Canonization is before the Holy See in Rome. For further information you can go to: www.carmelitesisters.com.

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Benedictines of the Immaculate

The Benedictines of the Immaculate are a new traditional community of Benedictines of strict observance in Liguria, Italy. They were founded on July 2nd 2008, in Villatalla, a small Italian village located in Liguria on the height of Imperia, very near to Vintimmille and on French border.

This community was founded by two monks coming from the Abbey of Our Lady of the Annnunciation, Le Barroux (France), at the request of Monsignor Mario Oliveri, bishop of Albenga-Imperia.

Benedettini dell'Immacolata
Casa Santa Caterina da Siena

Email: benedett.immacolata at alice.it

More information, including a schedule of services, can be found on their blog here.

Saturday, 8 November 2008

FSSP Vocations Retreat in England

"Please support me with your prayer, and I will be happy to do the same in the recollection of the retreat, invoking divine power on each one of you, on your families and your communities."
-- Pope Benedict XVI, 25 Feb. 2007

Retreats preached at Douai Abbey (Berks., UK) by Fr Armand de Malleray, of the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter

Vocation Retreat (2 nights)
7-9 January 2009

Starts Wednesday 7th January 2009 at 2pm –
ends Friday 9th January 2009 at 11am

Theme: "Ask the master of the harvest to send out labourers for his harvest." (Mt 9,38)
Retreat for celibate men, age 16-40 [Vocations video]

Cost: £70 - to cover:
1-Accommodation: single room with en-suite bathroom, full board. The Guest Master suggests a donation of £58.75 per person.
2-Retreat Master’s expenses: a minimum £11.25 per person expected.
N.B. special reduction for students: £45 everything included.

Schedule: Silent retreat (inside the premises); meals with table reading on the theme of the retreat or music; includes a one-hour conference in the morning and in the afternoon; coffee-break; walks around the Abbey; possibility of private meeting with the Retreat Master and of confession; daily Mass in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman rite; other devotions possible (Rosary, meditation).

Possibility of attending some of the monks prayers (Douai Abbey is a community of monks of the English Benedictine Congregation).

Location: Douai Abbey, Upper Woolhampton RG7 5TQ, Berkshire, United Kingdom (about 1 hour west from London). Website: www.douaiabbey.org.uk

By car: Douai Abbey is situated 1 mile north of the A4 about half way between Reading and Newbury in Berkshire. The turn off the A4 is about 6 miles from M4 Junction 12.

By rail: the nearest station is called MIDGHAM, but it is actually in Woolhampton village: trains from London Paddington, Reading & Newbury. A lift from and to the railway station can be arranged directly with the Guest Master (tel.: 0118 971 5399).

The building is equipped for wheel chairs.

Booking and contact: Fr Armand de Malleray, FSSP, 179 Elgar Rd, Reading RG2 0DH, Berks – Tel.: 0118 987 5819 – E-mail: malleray[at]fssp.org. Website: www.fssp.org.uk

N.B. Your payment will take place at the Abbey during the retreat. Deposit has already been paid. No other payment required.

To make a donation to help others – especially students – attend the retreat: please use contact above (£ cheques made payable to "FSSP England" – please mention then "Retreat Sponsoring". Thank you very much).

Saturday, 1 November 2008

New Edition of the Roman Breviary Ready to Order

by Gregor Kollmorgen

The website about the new edition of the Breviarium Romanum is now online at http://www.breviariumromanum.com complete with an order form.

This is the new edition I first mentioned in this post. While the website offers all the information you want, I'll just highlight a few things.

The Breviary fully complies with the rubrics of the usus antiquior, i.e. the codex rubricarum of 1960, and is canonically approved by the Bishop of Eichstätt, Germany.

The text of the psalms is that of the Vulgate (Gallican psalter).

It comes in two volumes in flexible leather covers, which I find a particularly practical feature which is sadly only rarely found in books these days:

It is a newly typeset edition (not a reprint), arranged in the traditional, two-column Breviary layout, and will have several other traditional features of the art of liturgical book-binding, arrangement and typesetting in the tradition of the great German liturgical publisher, Friedrich Pustet.

You can download more sample pages here.

It will also include four insert cards for each volume with the most frequent texts.

The price for the complete set will be EUR 198, i.e. as per today USD 252.28, plus shipping.

Now this Breviary edition is expected to be ready for shipping by the end of November/early December. Orders will be carried out in the order of their placement. Early orders should therefore arrive in time for Christmas even in the US by airmail.

In the interest of full disclosure I will again say that I have been involved in this project, although in a very minor role, by proofreading; my interest, however, is entirely liturgical, I will not receive any remuneration form the proceeds whatsoever.

You can read the preface to the Breviary by His Excellency the Most Reverend Gregor Maria Hanke OSB, Bishop of Eichstätt, here.

(reproduced from The New Liturgical Movement)