According to The Scotsman:

People can become isolated and struggle financially during the long winter months, according to local councillors who have teamed up with gamekeepers, estate owners, charities and volunteers to supply food and fuel to those hit the hardest.

Tillypronie estate by Aboyne will supply pheasants, Balmoral is donating logs and vegetables and Scottish Gamekeepers’ ­Association member Audrey Dykes has arranged for her shooting syndicate to provide fresh­ venison.

Recipes will be included in the packages for those unaccustomed to cooking with game.

It is hoped they will provide enough food for at least two meals over Christmas.

To read the entire article in The Scotsman, please click here.

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According to Royal Central:

In this past year, the British Monarchy cost taxpayers £35.7 million. That represents a cost of 56 pence per person in the United Kingdom.

The President of France…cost…£91 million. The total cost works out at £1.43 per person in France.

A little further south and we find the Italian Republic. Its president…amazingly costs Italian taxpayers £181.5m per year! That’s £3.08 for every Italian!

Coming in at a par with the British Monarchy now is the Polish presidency, costing Polish taxpayers £34 million per year.

…the German presidency, [cost]…at the least £30.8m

…cost of the American presidency reportedly going into billions…

To read the entire article at Royal Central, please click here.

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In the United States of America there lived, sometime ago, a General in the army, who was known in all that country to be an Atheist.

His wife was a good Catholic, and tried to bring up their daughter, who was their only child, in the fear of God; and although her father endeavored to instill into her mind his own wicked principles, the grace of God enabled her to remain firm in her faith, and in the practice of her religious duties.

A_Young_GirlIt happened that she became very ill, and lay in danger of death. Her father, who loved her with intense affection, watched by her bedside continually; but even his love for her could not hide from him what everyone else saw, that she was gradually but surely approaching her end.

“O my dearest father,” she said to him one day as he sat beside her, holding her hands in his and tenderly caressing her” O my dearest father, you see I am now at the point of death, and I must soon leave you. You have often told me that there is no God and no Heaven hereafter; and my dear mother has taught me that there is a God, Who will reward us, and make us eternally happy in the next life in His own home above, if we adore and serve Him here on earth. Tell me now, my own dear father, whether I am to believe her or you?”
This she said, not because she doubted what to believe, but that she might gain her father from his unbelief, and make him a good Catholic.

death-bed

When she had said these words, the General sat motionless, as if struck by a thunderbolt, and for some moments he did not answer. He did not wish to say to his dying child what he knew in his heart to be false, and at the same time he did not want to acknowledge the existence of God in the presence of his associates in unbelief, some of whom were in the room at the time. The contest within him was only for a few moments. He looked on his darling child, and his eyes met hers. In an instant he exclaimed: “O my child, do not heed my words; believe only what your mother has taught you.”

Those in the room who heard these words looked at him in amazement. “Surely, General,” they said to him,” you do not really mean what you have just now said.”

Subscription1He turned towards them, and, pointing to his dying child, answered, with a thrill in his voice which reached the depths of their hearts: “My friends, it is indeed more convenient to live according to what we had pretended to believe, but at the hour of death it is only the ancient faith in the existence of the one true God that will give us consolation.”

Thus did that dying child bring back her father to the truth from which he had wandered, and he lived and died an excellent Catholic.

 

The Catechism in Examples Vol.3, Pg. 64-65 by Rev. D. Chisholm

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 448

 

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Plinio Corrêa de OliveiraSaint of the Day, October 30, 1972

 

Dr. Plinio

Here is an excerpt on Charlemagne taken from the renowned historian, J.B. Weiss’ História Universal:

“In 772, at the age of 30, Charles took over the government of the Kingdom of the Franks. He was rightly called Charles the Great, a name he deserved as a general and conqueror, organizer and legislator of his vast empire, and as the driving force of spiritual life throughout the West.

“Under his governance, Christian ideas achieved victories over the barbarians. His life was a constant struggle against the rudeness and barbarism that threatened the Catholic religion and the new culture then emerging.

Monument on Notre Dame square in Paris representing Charlemagne with his peers, Roland and Olivier.

Monument on Notre Dame square in Paris representing Charlemagne with his peers, Roland and Olivier.

“He undertook no fewer than 53 military expeditions, eighteen against the Saxons, one against Aquitaine, five against the Lombards, seven against the Arabs of Spain, one against the Thuringeans, four against the Avars, two against the Britons, one against the Bavarians, four against the Slavs, five against the Saracens of Italy, three against the Danes, and two against the Greeks.

“At Christmas in the year 800, Pope St. Leo III elevated him to the dignity of Emperor thus founding the Holy Roman German Empire, the noblest temporal institution of Christendom. Charles died on 29 February 814, after receiving Holy Communion. According to legend, he was buried in a niche at the cathedral of Aix-la-Chapelle sitting upright on a throne, girt with his sword, and holding he book of the Gospels in his hands.

“He is the model of Catholic emperors, the prototype of the knight, and the central figure of most chansons de geste of the Middle Ages.”

At St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, a few steps after entering the central nave, one admire the famous “porphyretic circle,” a great disc of porphyry—a superb, wine-colored marble. Upon it, Charlemagne was sacred Emperor by Pope Leo III at Christmas of the year 800.

At St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, a few steps after entering the central nave, one admire the famous “porphyretic circle,” a great disc of porphyry—a superb, wine-colored marble. Upon it, Charlemagne was sacred Emperor by Pope Leo III at Christmas of the year 800.

I don’t know why, speaking about Charlemagne and his deeds and greatness, also brings to mind the extraordinary figure of Moses, with his own deeds and his greatness. Moses established order among the chosen people, who were a pre-figure of Christendom. He was the one who received the revelation of the Ten Commandments of the Law, led the chosen people to the gates of the Promised Land, took them out of captivity and thus established the basic elements for them to settle down and for the Savior to be born from them.

Charlemagne’s task was essentially similar to that of Moses. He took the Catholic people, subject to impending bondage by their worst opponents, and through a tremendous fight defeated them all and laid the foundations of Christian civilization.

For us to an idea of what Charlemagne’s task was like, we must consider the conditions of his time.

A close-up

A close-up

As you know, the Western Roman Empire covered all of Western Europe until the fifth century of our era. And in very general terms its borders extended from the Rhine and the Danube all the way to Portugal, in the west; to England, in the north and to Italy, in the south. Therefore, it was an immense unit made even more immense because at that time the lines of communication were much slower, making it difficult for an emperor to govern that whole expanse. Accordingly, calculated in relation to the administrative and political machine needed to maintain the unity of such an empire, its dimensions were gigantic.

This empire was overthrown by the avalanche of barbarians. As you know, the latter were Aryans or pagans. Aryanism was a heresy which can be loosely compared to Protestantism. The Aryan was as anti-Catholic as a Protestant. An Arian bishop called Ulfilas had perverted pagan barbarians to the Aryan religion so that most of the barbarians who invaded the (Catholic) Roman Empire were Aryans who came with the intention of imposing their religion. Others were pagans who wanted to impose paganism. Both were barbarians, and as such they were incompatible with civilization by habit, psychology, and natural tendency. They settled in the Western Roman Empire and gradually, willingly or not, tore civilization to bits.

Charlemagne is crowned Emperor by Pope St. Leo III. Illumination by Jean Fouquet

Charlemagne is crowned Emperor by Pope St. Leo III. Illumination by Jean Fouquet

For you to have an idea of how these invaders were really barbarian, suffice it to say that in general they did not understand that one could sleep indoors, because they felt claustrophobic. So they would sleep in public squares. There was a barbarian tribe that felt claustrophobic even if sleeping in town, so when night came they would open the city gate and go to sleep in the bush as they had difficulty breathing in the city. No comment…

A very serious problem the barbarians faced was whether it was worthwhile for them to become literate. Indeed, they saw that the Romans were literate but were also very decadent, corrupt, and bad soldiers, and the Barbarians thought the reason for that was their literacy. So they had the greatest contempt for a man who learned how to read and write. A literate person was thought to be effeminate. So you see how messed up their ideas were.

Stained-glass of Charlemagne sitting on his throne in the railway station of Metz, representing the imperial protection over Metz during the German annexation of the city. Photo by Fab5669.

Stained-glass of Charlemagne sitting on his throne in the railway station of Metz, representing the imperial protection over Metz during the German annexation of the city. Photo by Fab5669.

When the barbarians began to settle on European soil and impose their tyranny, it turned out that that the Church was the only thing still standing amid the ruins of the Empire. The Western Roman Empire disappeared, but the Church remained standing with heir dioceses, convents etc.

So the way of salvation to try and get out of the abyss was to strengthen the influence of the Church and thereby lift Europe out the miserable situation in which it had fallen.

In the meantime, another disaster occurs. Because of the softness and “fifth-column” mentality of the Ostrogoths who inhabited Spain, the Iberian Peninsula is invaded by Muslims. It was almost entirely taken and Arab waves began to invade semi-Roman and semi-barbaric Europe across the Pyrenees.

Charlemagne, painted by Albrecht Dürer

Charlemagne, painted by Albrecht Dürer

Muslims would get on boats, land in Italy and in southern France and began invading them too. So the open wound which was Europe at that time also began to suffer the Mohammedan onslaught.

It was then, when all seemed lost, that God raised this extraordinary man who was Charlemagne; a man who –in my opinion — was a prophet. In other words, a man who realized the kingdom of God because he had the gifts of understanding in what that kingdom consisted, and leading others to join in his resolve to achieve that work. Moreover, he had to overcome the obstacles opposed to that realization.

Fresco in the Townhall in Bremen, symbolically showing the creation and transferring of the diocese of Bremen, to Bishop of Bremen, St. Willehad by the Emperor Charlemagne. The diocese, a model of the Bremen Cathedral, in its form of 1532, is located between the two. Photo by Godewind

Fresco in the Townhall in Bremen, symbolically showing the creation and transferring of the diocese of Bremen, to Bishop of Bremen, St. Willehad by the Emperor Charlemagne. The diocese, a model of the Bremen Cathedral, in its form of 1532, is located between the two. Photo by Godewind

Charlemagne came from a family that had reigned upon the Franks for two generations. While also divided by internecine wars and struggles, that family was influential among the Franks – only one of the barbarian peoples that existed in Europe.

While leading the Franks, Charlemagne waged a series of wars as you have seen above, many military expeditions in which he completely defeated the barbarians. And later he also contained the Mohammedan power and thus pushed back the gates of history. In fact, history seemed to have irrevocably condemned the Latin peoples to disappear under Germanic and Mohammedan pressure. Charlemagne saved the Latin civilization; and by saving latinitas, he saved Christendom.

Charlemagne and the Pope

Charlemagne meets Pope Adrian I in the outskirts of Rome. The pontiff asks him to help Holy Church, besieged by enemies.

According to available descriptions, the man who carried out such extraordinary deeds was Herculean. Tall, with very regular features and very well built, he kept something of his youth even in old age, and in his youth days had something of the maturity of old age; when young he instilled respect as if he were an old man. And in his old age, he infused enthusiasm in others like a boy.

He was a man so kind and gentle that the popular legend said flowers would bloom throughout his white beard when he smiled, and his beard was in full bloom. He was called “the king of the flourishing beard.” This gives an idea of how rich a personality he was: terrible in combat – when his opponents learned that Charlemagne was at the battle front, they had already lost half the battle — yet so kind and gentle that people imagined flowers springing from beard.

Charlemagne's army crossed the Alps with amazing speed

Charlemagne’s army crossed the Alps with amazing speed

This great warrior was at the same time a great mentor. He formed a handful of men who became known in history as the Twelve Peers of Charlemagne. The expression, “Peer of Charlemagne,” denotes an ideal relationship. Never before in the temporal order had a relationship between a leader and his subjects been so noble, elevated and strong; never the condition of subject had been so categorical but at the same time communicated such greatness as that of being a Peer of Charlemagne.

There was such a difference between Charlemagne and his peers that all of them together did not make one Charlemagne. Yet, a Peer of Charlemagne reflected an aspect of his personality to such an extent that he was like his son and ambassador, bringing all that charlemagnicity and participating in his majesty, strength and greatness . . . Although he was unmistakable, his Peers became, as it were, other Charlemagnes.

Emperor Charlemagne surrounded by his officers receiving Alcuin, who is presenting manuscripts made by his Monks Painted by Victor Schnetz

Emperor Charlemagne surrounded by his officers receiving Alcuin, who is presenting manuscripts made by his Monks Painted by Victor Schnetz

In this relationship is found precisely the beauty of the bond that held them together. On the other hand, a very beautiful aspect to be considered was the solidarity of these Peers: a solidarity without pride or envy, which sought exclusively to serve the Emperor and consequently the cause of Christian Civilization and therefore the Catholic Church… Our Lady … and Our Lord Jesus Christ in the highest heaven! For this end they were closely united among themselves. The Peers of Charlemagne were united by the ideal model of a noble, strong, manly, unpretentious, and loyal friendship.

This is the reason why Christian tradition in many countries of Europe gave the nobility the title of peer: “Peer of the Realm” in the UK; “Peer of the Realm” in France … It was a copy of the relationship between Charlemagne and his Peers, which so personified the perfect relationship with subjects, raising them to the condition of sons and ‘my other selves’ while still clearly keeping them in the position of subjects.

CharlemagneThis man of fiery piety was also illiterate… An illiteracy which shows us how very little it is to merely learn to read and write. Many of those who learn to read and write have the misguided idea that thinking begins with the book. According to this notion, when a person decides to think about something the first step is for him to buy a book and read something about the subject in order to think about what he reads.

But Charlemagne, who could neither read nor write, knew how to grasp things from another angle. He had such a sense of things and such intelligence that he organized education throughout his Empire by calling men like Alcuin, who served him as a kind of “Minister of Culture.”

Monumental equestrian statue of Charlemagne, by Agostino Cornacchini (1725) — St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican. Photo by Myrabella.

Monumental equestrian statue of Charlemagne, by Agostino Cornacchini (1725) — St. Peter’s Basilica, Vatican. Photo by Myrabella.

There is more. He was present at bishops’ councils and watched them decide, as they are the ones who must decide about Church affairs. Nevertheless, Charlemagne took the floor and delved into the theological debates being held, usually successfully. He was the one who had the right theological formula even though he never went to a seminary. You can see what he was like!

This son of the Church was her rampart, support, and glory. He did not infringe upon her rights but respected her sovereignty and recognized all her power. Accordingly, the Church crowned him.

Everyone knows the beautiful episode that took place in the year 800 as he found himself in the first papal basilica, i.e. the then church (today basilica) of St. John Lateran in Rome. He was praying on his knees waiting for the Pope to enter in order to celebrate Christmas Mass. The Pope entered bringing a golden crown and reestablished the Roman Empire in the person of Charlemagne by proclaiming him Emperor. The people cheered: “Long live Charlemagne, our Emperor!” Thus was restored the Roman Empire, which would last a thousand years.

Charlemagne and Alcuin

Charlemagne and Alcuin

How beautiful this gesture was! It is the Church recognizing and crowning, on earth, the one whom God has certainly crowned in heaven.

Here is another beautiful aspect to consider: a Pope’s power! The Roman Empire is an institution that was not born of the Popes. It was the Roman Senate that created Roman greatness; and Roman emperors were born from the decay of the Roman Republic, a pagan institution that was Christianized with Constantine. The Pope saw himself as, and indeed was, empowered to restore the Roman Empire. He refounded the Holy Roman Empire, that is, the Sacred Roman Empire, made for the defense of the Faith.

Photo of Joyeuse, the Sword of Charlemagne by P.poschadel. The sword was kept in the Saint Denis Basilica since at least 1505, and it was moved to the Louvre in 1793.

Photo of Joyeuse, the Sword of Charlemagne by P.poschadel. The sword was kept in the Saint Denis Basilica since at least 1505, and it was moved to the Louvre in 1793.

That Christmas night, Peter had just forged for himself a golden sword, the Holy Roman German Empire, with the mission of defending the Faith throughout Christendom.

How wonderful and marvelous! And how these marvels remind us of the very different days we are living in! But there are certain ideals that never die because they are directly deducted from the Faith and are as immortal as the Faith! And as we hear narrations of events like that we understand that the history of the world simply cannot end with God’s defeat. There has to be a monumental rematch. And the Gnostic and egalitarian Revolution must be defeated in order for the Reign of Mary, for which the world was created, to be established. God created the world so that at a certain moment His reign upon it would be complete. This has to happen.

Signature of Charlemagne

Signature of Charlemagne

Hence, recalling such events gives us hope in the future and is – to employ an American expression which I found very appropriate — a “creative anachronism.” There is nothing more anachronistic than the Empire of Charlemagne, but this is a creative anachronism. The memory of this Empire creates hope for, and certainty of a future. We are marching toward the restoration of that order of which Charlemagne was a symbol.

We can ask Charlemagne to pray for us. Not all episodes in Charlemagne’s life are entirely clear. The Church did not make an exact pronouncement on whether or not he is a saint. But it is a custom in some parts of Europe to celebrate the feast of “blessed Charlemagne.” At the time of Pope Benedict XIV (18th century), the forerunners of progressivists sought to abolish the feast of Charlemagne (that is when progressivists show zeal…). But Benedict XIV issued a brief in which he declared that, in places where Charlemagne was venerated as a blessed, that veneration could continue.

Throne of Charlemagne in Aachen Cathedral, Germany.

Throne of Charlemagne in Aachen Cathedral, Germany.

Therefore, today, if not publicly, at least within our souls we may ask Charlemagne to give us invincible strength to help found the Reign of Mary like he founded the Middle Ages, of which he was the cornerstone.

(About devotion to Charlemagne, it is well to recall that St. Joan of Arc said that her mission was owed to “My lord [king] Saint Louis” and my lord Saint Charlemagne.”)

Nothing could be more beautiful, all the more so since St. Joan of Arc had revelations from heaven and knew very well where “Monsignor Saint Louis and Monsignor Saint Charlemagne” were. So, let us say with St. Joan of Arc: My lord Saint Louis and My lord Saint Charlemagne, pray for the end of the Gnostic and egalitarian Revolution and for the Reign of Mary to come soon!

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Saint John of Cirita

Memorial: 23 December
Benedictine monk, also known as John Ziritu. Hermit in Galacia. Monk at Toronca, Portugal, which he helped turn into a Cistercian house. Wrote the Rule of the Knights of Aviz (Portuguese: Ordem Militar de Avis).  Died, c. 1164.
The Order of Saint Benoit d'Avis

The Order of Saint Benoit d’Avis

The Military Order of St. Benedict of Aviz

A military body of Portuguese knights.

The Kingdom of Portugal, founded in 1128, was not only contemporaneous with the Crusades but conducted one of its own against the Moors. Some crusaders were bound only by temporary vows, and when these expired they would sometimes return to their country although the war was not ended…

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Saint Antônio de Sant’Anna Galvão

St. AnthonyBorn 1739, in the village of Santo Antonio da Vila de Guaratinguetá, Brazil; died 23 December, 1822, at the Convent of Light, São Paulo, Brazil.

His father, also named Anthony, belonged to an illustrious Portuguese family and was well educated, as evidenced by his writings. He excelled in business, the military and public administration, leading him to serve well as the village may…

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December 23 – Duke of Guise

December 22, 2014

HENRI I DE LORRAINE

Prince de Joinville, and in 1563 third Duke of Guise, born 31 Dec. 1550, the son of François de Guise and Anne d’Este; died at Blois, 23 Dec., 1588.

Portrait of Henry I of Lorraine, 3rd Duke of Guise

Portrait of Henry I of Lorraine, 3rd Duke of Guise

The rumours which attributed to Coligny a share in the murder of François de Guise hailed in the young Henri de Guise, then thirteen years old, the avenger of his father and the leader of the Catholic party. While the Cardinal of Lorraine retained the ascendancy and the numerous following of his family, the young Henri, leaving France, had no part in the patched-up reconciliation at Moulins between his mother and Coligny. In July, 1556, he went to Hungary to fight in the emperor’s service against the Turks. When he returned to France he took part in the second and third Huguenot wars, distinguishing himself at the battles of Saint-Denis (1567), Jarnac, Moncontour, and at the defence of Portiers (1569) against Coligny. His pretension (1570) to the hand of Margaret of Valois, sister of Charles IX, seriously offended the king, but he was restored to favour on his hastily marrying Catherine de Clèves (1548-1633), widow of the Prince of Porcien and goddaughter of Catharine de’ Medici, noted for the frivolity of her youth and for the strange freedom with which she had caused her lovers to be painted in her Book of Hours as crucified.

Between 1570 and 1572 Henri de Guise was much disturbed by the ascendancy of Coligny and the Protestants in the counsels of Charles IX. To similar suspicious fears, shared by Catharine de’ Medici, must be traced the St. Bartholomew massacre. Guise was accused of having given the impulse by stationing Maurevers (22 Aug., 1572) on the route taken by Coligny, and when the next day Catharine de’ Medici insisted that, in order to forestall an outbreak of Protestant vengeance, Charles IX should order the death of several of their chiefs, Guise was summoned to the palace to arrange for the execution of the plan. For the massacre and the deplorable proportions it assumed, see Saint Bartholomew’s Day. During the night of 24 August, Henri de Guise, with a body of armed men, went to Coligny’s dwelling, and while his attendants slew Coligny, he waited on horseback in the courtyard and cried, “Is he quite dead?” In repelling the repeated attacks of the Huguenots at the battle of Dormans (10 Oct. 1575) during the Huguenot war, Henri received a wound on the cheek which led to his being thenceforth known, like his father, as Le Balafré. His power increased, and he was regarded as a second Judas Machabeus. His popularity was now so great that a contemporary wrote, “It is too little to say that France was in love with that man; she was bewitched by him.”

Henry III as Duke of Anjou

Henry III as Duke of Anjou

King Henry III began to feel that his own safety was threatened, the powerful family was beginning to aspire to the throne. In 1576 the Holy League was organized, centered at once about the popular hero, Henri de Guise, and in a few months had at its disposal 26,000 infantry and 5000 cavalry. The object of the League was to defend the Catholic religion in France. Still earlier at Toulouse (1563), Angers (1565), Dijon (1567), Bourges and Troyes (1568), Catholic leagues had been formed, composed of loyal and pious middle class citizens. In 1576, however, the Holy League was established among the nobility and, according to a declaration spread throughout France by Guise, this association of princes, lords, and gentlemen had a twofold purpose: (1) to establish in its fullness the law of God; to restore and maintain God’s holy service according to the form and manner of the Holy, Catholic, Apostolic, and Roman church; to preserve king Henry III in the state of splendour, authority, duty, and obedience owed to him by his subjects, but with the proviso that nothing shall be done to the prejudice of what may be enjoined by the States-General. (2) To restore to the provinces and states of the realm, under the protection of the League, their ancient rights, pre-eminence, franchises and liberties such as they have been from the time of Clovis, the first Christian king, and as much better and more profitable, if improvement were possible, as they could be made under the protection of the League. From the beginning, therefore, a decentralizing as well as a Catholic tendency characterized the League.

The Huguenots soon pretended to have discovered among the papers of one Jean David that the Guises had forwarded to Rome a memoir claiming that, by reason of their descent from Charlemagne, Henry III should yield them the throne of France.

Henry of Lorraine, third Duke of Guise.

Henry of Lorraine, third Duke of Guise.

The League was first organized in Picardy, under the direction of the Maréchal de Humiéres, governor of Péronne, Roye, and Montdider, then in other provinces, and finally in Paris, under the direction of the avocat, Pierre Henequin, and the Labruyères, father and son. Henry III, fearing to become a prisoner of the Catholic forces, immediately signed with the Protestants the Peace of Beaulieu, by which he granted them important concessions, but at the States-General (November-December, 1576, the influence of the League was preponderant. By the edict of 1 Jan, 1577, the Court annulled the Peace of Beaulieu, and Henry III even joined the League. This was the signal for two new religious wars, during which the military talents and Catholic zeal of Henri de Guise naturally contrasted with the cowardice and wavering policy of the king. The former stood out more and more distinctly as the leader of the Catholic party, while Henry of Navarre, the future Henry IV, now posed as the champion of the Protestants.

In the meantime occurred the death of Francis of Valois (10 June, 1584), brother of Henry III and heir presumptive to the throne. It was at once obvious that the Valois dynasty would become extinct with Henry III, and that Henry of Navarre, leader of the Protestants, would be the natural heir to the throne. Henri de Guise and the League determined at once to provide against the possibility of such an event. On the one hand, pamphleteers and genealogists, with an eye to the future, wrote countless brochures to prove that the Guises were the real descendants of Charlemagne, and that, like Pepin the Short,they might, with the assistance of the Holy See ascend the throne of France. On the other hand Henri de Guise concluded the Treaty of Joinville (31 Dec., 1584) with Philip II of Spain, and had it ratified by Sixtus V. This stipulated that, at the death of Henry III, the Cardinal de Bourbon, Archbishop of Rouen (1520-90), the third son of Charles de Bourbon, Duke of Vendôme, should be recognized as heir to the crown, “to the exclusion of all French princes of the blood at present heretics and relapsed”. The Cardinal de Bourbon published a manifesto to this effect (1 April, 1585). Philip II of Spain granted the League a subsidy of 50,000 crowns a month; moreover the clergy and lower middle classes of Paris organized for the Catholic defence, although the municipality was hostile to the League.

Henry I, Duke of Guise

Henry I, Duke of Guise

Civil war now broke out, and by the treaty of Namours Henry III took sides with the League and revoke all edicts which granted liberty to Protestants (18 July, 1585). When Sixtus V was assured that Henry III and Henri de Guise had come to an agreement, he launched a Bull of excommunication against the future Henry IV. So long as he was solicited to uphold the Guises against Henry III, the pope had temporized, but now that the League was operating under royal authority, he interfered in favour of the movement. The Guises in the meantime roused all Champagne and Picardy, and took Toul and Verdun. Their lieutenant, Anne de Joyeuse, was defeated at Coutras by Henry of Navarre, but the victories of Henri de Guise at Vimory (26 Oct., 1587) compelled the withdrawal of the German Protestant troops. A secret committee organized the League at Paris. In the provinces it was supported by the nobility, but in Paris it drew its strength from the common people and the religious orders. The secret committee, at first five members, then sixteen, divided Paris into quarters, and in each quarter made preparation for war. Soon 30,000 Parisians declared themselves ready to serve Guise, while in the pulpits the preachers of the League upheld in impassioned language the rights of the people and of the pope. Furthermore, by agreement with Philip II, Guise sent the Duc d’Aumale to overthrow the strongholds of Picardy, in order to assure by this means a way of retreat to the Invincible Armada, which was being sent to England to avenge Mary Stuart, niece of François de Guise, executed at the command of Elizabeth (8 Feb., 1587).

Henry III now took fright and ordered Henri de Guise to remain in his government of Champagne; he entered Paris, nevertheless, in defiance of the king (9 May, 1588), and was welcomed with enthusiasm by the masses. Repairing to the Louvre, accompanied by 400 gentlemen, he called on Henry III to establish the Inquisition and promulgate in France the decrees of the Council of Trent. The king protested and sought to bring troops to Paris on whom he might rely. A riot then broke out, and the people were about to march on the Louvre (Day of the Barricades, 12 May, 1588), but Guise, on horseback and unarmed, rode about Paris calming them. He felt assured that the king, who had made him fine promises, was thenceforth in his hands. The former, however, to escape Guise’s tutelage, withdrew on the morrow to Chartres.

Assassination of Henry I, Duke of Guise, by Henry III, in 1588.

Assassination of Henry I, Duke of Guise, by Henry III, in 1588.

Guise was now absolute master of Paris, and for some days was all-powerful. The brilliancy of his victory, however, encouraged the extremist of the League. The Sixteen, now in possession of the municipalities, committed many excesses, while such preachers as Boucher, Guincestre, and Pighenat, cried loudly for civil war. Feeling that he was overruled, Guise now offered to treat with the king, and the latter signed the Edict of Union at Rouen (10 July, 1588), by which he ratified the League, gave Guise various offices of trust, and made him lieutenant-general of the kingdom in opposition to the Protestants, barred Henry of Navarre from succession to the throne, and promised the immediate convocation of the States-general. In this way Henry III gained time.

The States-General assembled at Blois (Sept.-Dec. 1588), the members of the League being in control. Speeches were made, some aristocratic in sentiment, others democratic, but all against royal absolutism; and Guise was thenceforth the leader, not only of a religious, but also of a political movement. The members of the assembly treated Henry II as a sluggard king; the rôle of Guise resembled that of Charlemagne’s forebears under the last Merovingians.

Subscription20At this junction, Henry III determined to rid himself of Guise, and his death was decided upon. Upon taking his seat at table (22 Dec., 1588) Guise found beneath his napkin a note which warned him that a plot was on foot against him. Below the warning he wrote, “None would dare”, and threw it away. The next morning he was summoned to Henry III, and was slain by the guards. A carpet was thrown over his body, and the courtiers made sarcastic speeches as they passed, calling him the “handsome king of Paris”. Henry III left his apartments to kick the dead man in the face. That same night, Louis, Cardinal of Guise (1555-88), brother of Henri, was assassinated by four archers of the king, who feared less the cardinal should become a peril to the State. The bodies of the two leaders of the League were burned and thrown into the Loire. This double assassination was at once the subject of a multitude of pamphlets.

By Catherine de Clèves, Henri de Guise had seven daughters and seven sons, on one of whom, François-Alexandre (1589-1614), a posthumous son, the enthusiastic Parisians bestowed a third name, Paris.

Contemporary documents: Mémoires-journaux du duc François de Guise in Collection Michaud et Poujoulat; Correspondance de François de Lorraine avec Christophe, duc de Würtemberg, in Bulletin de la Société de l’histoire du protestantisme français, XXIV (1875); Mémoires de la Ligue (Amsterdam, 1758); Aubigné, Histoire universelle, ed. Ruble, I-IX (Paris, 1886-97); de Thou, Histoire universelle (London, 1773); Mémoires journaux de l’Estoile; Mathieu, Histoire des derniers troubles de France depuis les premiers mouvements de la Ligue jusqu’à la clôture des Etats à Blois (Lyons, 1597); Journal de siège de Paris, ed. Franklin (Paris, 1876); Palma Cayet, Chronologie novénaire (1589-98); journal d’un curé liguer, ed. Barthélémy (Paris, 1886).Historical works: de Bouiullé, Histoire des ducs de Guise (4 vols., Paris, 1849); de Croze, Les Guise, les Valois et Philippe II (2 vols., Paris, 1866); Forneron, Les ducs du Guise et leur époque (2 vols., Paris, 1878); de Lacombe, Catherine de Médicis entre Guise et Condé (Paris, 1899); Romier, Le maréchal de Saint-André (Paris, 1909); Chalambert, Histoire de la Ligue (2 vols, Paris, 1854); de l’Epinois, La Ligue et les Papes (Paris, 1886); Labitte, De la démocratie chez les prédicateurs de la Ligue (Paris, 1841); Zeller, Le mouvement Guisard en 1588 in Revue historique, XLI (1889). For special treatment of Cardinal de Lorraine’s connection with the Council of Trent, consult Dupuy, Instructions et lettres des rois très chrétiens et des leurs ambassadeurs concernant le concile de Trente (Paris, 1654); Hanotaux, Instructions données aux ambassadeurs et ministres de France à Rome (Paris, 1888), preface. lxvi-lxxiii.

GEORGES GOYAU (cfr. Catholic Encyclopedia)

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St. Emiliana and St. Tarsilla

St. Emiliana and St. Tarsilla

Aunts of St. Gregory the Great, virgins in the sixth century, given in the Roman Martyrology, the former on 24 December, the latter on 5 January. St. Gregory (Hom. XXXVIII, 15, on the Gospel of St. Matthew, and Lib. Dial., IV, 16) relates that his father, the Senator Gordian, had three sisters who vowed themselves to God and led a life of virginity, fasting, and prayer in their own home on the Clivus Scauri in Rome.  They were Trasilla (Tarsilla, Tharsilla, Thrasilla), Emiliana, and Gordiana. Gordiana, led on at first by the words and example of her sisters, did not persevere but returned to the vanities of the world. After many years in the service of God, St. Felix III, an ancestor, appeared to Trasilla and bade her enter her abode of glory. On the eve of Christmas she…

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St. Peter Nolasco

Born at Mas-des-Saintes-Puelles, near Castelnaudary, France, in 1189 (or 1182); died at Barcelona, on Christmas Day, 1256 (or 1259). He was of a noble family and from his youth was noted for his piety, almsgiving, and charity. Having given all his possessions to the poor, he took a vow of virginity and, to avoid communication with the Albigenses, went to Barcelona.

St. Pedro Nolasco has a vision of Jerusalem. Painting by Francisco de Zurbarán

At that time the Moors were masters of a great part of the Iberian peninsula, and many Christians were detained there and cruelly…

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Since no door in the town of Bethlehem was opened to the Holy Family, the Infant Jesus was born in a poor stable manger heated only with an ox and ass.

In reparation for such lack of hospitality, every year at Christmas, French noble houses open their doors to the Christ Child, his holy Mother, and to the patriarch Saint Joseph.

In sumptuously decorated rooms, in an ambiance filled with amiability, courtesy, etiquette and elegance, the salon society comes to kneel before a manger that has nothing of a salon.
However, that is where we find the Child-God, along with Our Lady and Saint Joseph, prince and princess of the House of David.
O Jesus, so humbled on our account!
O omnipotent majesty!
Charm, beauty, grace, and wonder – all render homage to the King of Kings.
O little Child, o powerful King, extend thy reign completely over us!
This is the prayer and submission of the most refined salons on earth to the Divine Monarch Who conquered the whole world from that humble stable manger.
In the heavens, the court of angels rejoices together with the courts of men, glorifying the Divine Child, King and Redeemer.

(Nobility.org translation)

If video does not play, please view it here.Nobility Book for Christmas

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According to the Royal Collection Trust:

Windsor Castle’s magnificent State Apartments have been transformed for the festive season with an array of decorations, from seasonal garlands lining the Grand Staircase to bedecked Christmas trees, including a Nordman Fir from the Windsor Great Park standing at six metres tall in St George’s Hall.

In the State Dining Room the table is set with glittering silver-gilt, including items from George IV’s spectacular Grand Service, today used by The Queen and her guests at State Banquets. The display also features a silver-gilt centrepiece designed by Prince Albert.

Windsor Castle is decorated for the festive season until 6 January 2015.

To read the entire article at the Royal Collection Trust, please click here.

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A 1765 faïence chessboard made in Rouen, France.

A 1765 faïence chessboard made in Rouen, France.

The game of chess originated in India some 1,500 years ago, being called back then chaturanga. Like all other traditions, chess was passed on from one generation to another, being slowly improved over time, and one of these improvements was the Queen piece.

The game of chess, painted by John Opie.

The game of chess, painted by John Opie.

Today, the Queen is the most powerful piece on the board, but it was not always this way. Nor was this piece always called “Queen.” It was the King’s “adviser,” so in the Kingdom of Bengal (India), it was called the mantri (minister); in Persia, the Vazīr (vizir); in the Arabic world, Wazīr/Firz (vizier); in Turkey, vezir; but an improvement was made when chess was brought to Catholic medieval Europe. Players began referring to this piece as the “queen,” since its initial position was right next to the king, making them the royal couple. The queen was one of the weaker pieces though. She moved just one square at a time, diagonally at that, making her less powerful than today’s bishop.

Two chessplayers by Paris BordoneAll this changed with Isabella the Catholic’s dramatic intervention in the siege of Baza, in 1489, seven years into her ten-year war of reconquest of the Muslim Kingdom of Granada.
Her husband, King Ferdinand of Aragon, was one of the best generals of his time and he had excellent generals helping him in this siege, but it all seemed “a bridge too far.” The city was too powerful, defended by a strong, 20,000-man garrison, and well provisioned to withstand the longest siege. The Catholic troops and artillery seemed woefully disproportional to the task and after six months of siege warfare, the King called his generals to a council of war, and they recommended lifting the siege and withdrawing. Before striking camp, however, Ferdinand sent a messenger to Isabella who was then at Jaen, 90 miles away. She sent back word that a retreat would demoralize all Spain. They should continue the siege and she would go herself to their assistance.

Queen Isabel of CastileThe Queen’s arrival at the camp sent the Crusaders into transports of joy and enthusiasm, while inside Baza, the Muslim garrison despaired, seeing in her arrival the fatal seal of impending doom. Three weeks later they surrendered and were given all the honors of war.

Cardinals playing chess

As the news of Baza’s fall was carried everywhere, the Crusaders’ enthusiasm at Isabella’s arrival at their camp reverberated throughout Spain, and among the manifestations of joy, the rules of chess were changed, with the Queen becoming a most powerful piece, sweeping and majestic in her moves. A few years later, Luis Ramírez de Lucena enshrined the new rules in Repetición de Amores y Arte de Ajedrez, the oldest printed book on chess we have today, and the new rules were here to stay.

A Crusaders v Infidel Chess set displayed in a window in New York. Photo by Daniel Lightfoot

A Crusaders v Infidel Chess set displayed in a window in New York. Photo by Daniel Lightfoot

When we play chess, perhaps while enjoying a piece of chess pie, we should remember Isabella the Catholic, the greatest Queen Spain ever had, and how her Crusading zeal 500 years ago changed this ancient game forever.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 447

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Chess Pie Recipe

December 18, 2014

playing chess painting by Joseph Caraud

Chess Pie

 

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup butter

2 cups white sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 eggs

1 tablespoon cornmeal

1/4 cup evaporated milk

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

1 (9 inch) unbaked pie shell

 

Photo by Stacy

Photo by Stacy

 

DIRECTIONS

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

In a large bowl, mix the butter, sugar and vanilla together. Mix in the eggs, then [hand] stir in the cornmeal, evaporated milk and vinegar until smooth.

Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven, then reduce heat to 300 degrees F for 40 minutes. Let cool. Cut and top servings with whipped cream or alamode .

 

Note: You can also make lemon chess pie by adding 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice.

Recipe taken from here

 

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One might ask if the impending collapse can be avoided. We would answer that the course of history is not predetermined, although its lessons are often repeated. If we are to avoid the crisis, we must turn our efforts now to our grand return home.

1936 children's Communist Army. History has a way of repeating itself from then to....

1936 children’s Communist Army. History has a way of repeating itself from Communist supporters then to….

As Catholic countrymen concerned with the future of our nation, we appeal to our fellow Americans as the gathering storm approaches. Let us recognize those errors of the past that have led us so far astray. Let us rue the frenetic intemperance that threw our society and economy out of balance. Let us cultivate longings for our Father’s house and our Mother’s embrace. Above all, let us fervently beseech Almighty God to avert or mitigate the evils which our errors have brought upon us. And if this be not possible, and we are called to eat of the husks of the swine, then let us arise from our misfortunes like new Saint Pauls, humbled and chastened, to call our society back home, back to order.

To current Communist protests, this one in Ferguson, Missouri. KKK and Revolutionary Communist Party, USA supporters. Photo taken by The All-Nite Images.

…to current Communist protests, this one about Ferguson, Missouri, where KKK and Revolutionary Communist Party, USA supporters are displaying flags and signs. Photo taken by The All-Nite Images.

This was how Christendom was born. The humbled Prodigal Son who entered his father’s house in the hope of becoming a servant was exalted as a son beyond all expectations. So also we can expect a similar grand return home.

 

 

John Horvat II, Return to Order: From a Frenzied Economy to an Organic Christian Society—Where We’ve Been, How We Got Here, and Where We Need To Go (York, Penn.: York Press, 2013), 349-50.

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Pope Blessed Urban V

Guillaume de Grimoard, born at Grisac in Languedoc, 1310; died at Avignon, 19 December, 1370.

Pope Urban VBorn of a knightly family, he was educated at Montpellier and Toulouse, and became a Benedictine monk at the little priory of Chirac near his home. A Bull of 1363 informs us that he was professed at the great Abbey of St. Victor at Marseilles, where he imbibed his characteristic love for the Order of St. Benedict; even as pope he wore its habit. He was ordained at Chirac, and after a further course of theology and canon law at the universities of Toulouse, Montpellier, Paris, and Avignon, he received the doctorate in 1342. He was one of the…

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Pope St. Anastasius I

Pope St. Anastasius IA pontiff who is remembered chiefly for his condemnation of Origenism. A Roman by birth, he became pope in 399, and died within a little less than four years. Among his friends were Augustine, and Jerome, and Paulinus, Jerome speaks of him as a man or great holiness who was rich in his poverty. It was during the time of the barbarian invasions.

Acta SS., III, September; BUTLER, Lives of the Saints. 27 September.

T.J. CAMPBELL (Catholic Encyclopedia)

 

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St. Peter Canisius

St. Peter CanisiusBorn at Nimwegen in the Netherlands, 8 May, 1521; died in Fribourg, 21 November, 1597. His father was the wealthy burgomaster, Jacob Canisius; his mother, Ægidia van Houweningen, died shortly after Peter’s birth. In 1536 Peter was sent to Cologne, where he studied arts, civil law, and theology at the university; he spent a part of 1539 at the University of Louvain, and in 1540 received the degree of Master of Arts at Cologne. Nicolaus van Esche was his spiritual adviser, and he was on terms of friendship with such staunch Catholics as Georg of Skodborg (the expelled…

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Abbot and Bishop of Ros-mic-Truin (Ireland), probably in the sixth century.

New Ross in 1832, formerly called Ros Mhic Treoin, is located on the River Barrow, near the border with County Kilkenny.

He came of the royal race of Munster, and was brother of two other saints, Culain and Dairmid. Of the early part of his religious life little is known. When he became abbot of the monastery of Ros-mic-Truin, in succession to its founder, St. Abban, he had been apparently connected with one of the religious houses of the south of Ireland, since it is recorded that a number of monks “followed the man of God from his own country of Munster”. Ros-mic-Truin lies in South Leinster on the bank of the River Barrow, and is distant only…

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According to Hello Magazine:

King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of the Belgians returned to their official royal engagements on Saturday…when they stepped out in Bastogne for the commemorations of the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Bulge.

Throwing nuts is a tradition on the anniversary and is a tribute to the general who simply responded “Nuts!” when German emissaries asked for the Americans to surrender during the WWII Battle of the Bulge on 22 December 1944.

Taking part in the unique custom brought a welcome smile the royal couple’s faces, who laughed as they launched the small bags into the crowd.

To read the entire article in Hello Magazine, please click here.

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The charity of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette

The charity of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette

Distressed at the plight of the poor resulting from the Winter’s severity, Queen Marie Antoinette saved three hundred thousand francs from her personal budget and turned this sum over to her ladies-in-waiting, the parish priests of Paris, and charitable organizations for distribution among the needy. She also encouraged her daughter to do the same, and from the latter’s additional household thrift, a sum of five thousand francs more was obtained.

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Madame Campan, Mémoires sur la vie de Marie-Antoinette (Paris: Nelson Éditeurs, 1823), 184. (Nobility.org translation.)

 

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 446

 

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United in Common Struggle, for a Common Cause

December 15, 2014

History records how crisis and adversity have the effect of uniting men in common cause. In fact, no greater bond is forged than when people suffer together, as can be seen in the wartime ties among soldiers, or in the struggle for education that unites alumni for life. Common struggles often initiate changes that would […]

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December 16 – St. Adelaide: Most Important Woman of Her Century

December 15, 2014

St. Adelaide (ADELHEID). Born 931; died 16 December, 999, one of the conspicuous characters in the struggle of Otho the Great to obtain the imperial crown from the Roman Pontiffs. She was the daughter of Rudolph II, King of Burgundy, who was at war with Hugh of Provence for the crown of Italy. The rivals […]

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December 16 – Saint Judicael ap Hoel

December 15, 2014

Saint Judicael ap Hoel (c. 590 – 16 or 17 December 658) was the King of Domnonée and a Breton high king in the mid-seventh century. According to Gregory of Tours, the Bretons were divided into various regna (subkingdoms) during the sixth century, of which Domnonée, Cornouaille, and Broweroch are the best known; they had […]

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December 16 – Can Whistleblowers Be Saints? This One Was…

December 15, 2014

St. Ado, Archbishop of Vienne, Confessor Born about 800, in the diocese of Sens; died 16 December, 875. He was brought up at the Benedictine Abbey of Ferrières, and had as one of his masters the Abbot Lupus Servatus, one of the most celebrated humanists of those times. By his brilliant talents and assiduous application […]

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December 17 – St. Olympias

December 15, 2014

Born 360-5; died 25 July, 408, probably at Nicomedia. This pious, charitable, and wealthy disciple of St. John Chrysostom came from an illustrious family in Constantinople. Her father (called by the sources Secundus or Selencus) was a “Count” of the empire; one of her ancestors, Ablabius, filled in 331 the consular office, and was also […]

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December 17 – St. Begga, Widow and Abbess

December 15, 2014

This saint was daughter of Pepin of Landen, eldest sister to St. Gertrude of Nivelle, and married Ansegise, son to St. Arnoul, who was some time mayor of the palace, and afterwards bishop of Metz. Her husband being killed in hunting, she dedicated herself to a penitential state of retirement, and, after performing a pilgrimage […]

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December 17 – St. Sturmius and the diocese of Fulda

December 15, 2014

To systematize the work of evangelizing Germany, St. Boniface organized a hierarchy on the usual ecclesiastical basis; in Bavaria the Dioceses of Salzburg, Freising, Ratisbon, and Passau; in Franconia and Thuringia, Würzburg, Eichstätt, Buraburg near Fritzlar, and Erfurt. To facilitate missionary work farther north, especially among the Saxons, he sought a suitable spot for the […]

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Do not mollycoddle Royals

December 11, 2014

According to the IJReview: The way the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge…paid their respects at a 9/11 commemorative site is an example of absolute class. The couple is known for their patriotism and their deep respect for those in military and service roles. Prince William wanted to serve in Afghanistan…. William said in an interview: […]

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Duke and Duchess of Cambridge admire “the courage to rebuild” after 9/11

December 11, 2014

According to The Telegraph: …the Duchess of Cambridge admitted she was unprepared for just how affecting it would be as she spoke of her “awe” at what she was seeing. …the Duchess placed a bouquet of white roses – the State flower of New York – on part of the National 9/11 Memorial. A handwritten […]

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Canadian councillor will only swear allegiance to a queen if her ancestors have not been horrible

December 11, 2014

According to the Times-Colonist: Victoria’s new mayor, Lisa Helps, declined to swear allegiance to the Queen at her inauguration Thursday, stirring controversy on her first day in office. In addition to Helps, three councillors chose not to say the oath. Helps said underlying her decision was respect for First Nations. “I have nothing against the […]

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Louis XIV defends the court preacher

December 11, 2014

Though Louis XIV lived for years in marital infidelity, having relations with mistresses, he always paid close attention to the preachers whose duty it was to reprimand him and the other members of the Court for their errors. When some nobles complained to Louis XIV about a sermon of Father Jules Mascaron that had displeased […]

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We Must Respond to the Father’s Love

December 11, 2014

There is a final aspect in the Prodigal Son’s grand return home that is often disregarded, but herein lies the key point. We are told that the son longed for his father, but it is clear that the father longed much more for his son. Indeed, the father watched from afar for news of his […]

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December 12 – Guadalupe: She Who Smashes the Serpent

December 11, 2014

by Cesar Franco Pope Pius XII gave Our Lady of Guadalupe the title of “Empress of the Americas” in 1945. Since December 12 is the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, this is a propitious moment to recall how She reigns over our nation from Heaven, protecting and guiding us with Motherly solicitude and tenderness. […]

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December 13 – Elected Pope to Fight the Emperor

December 11, 2014

Pope Callistus II Date of birth unknown; died 13 December, 1124. His reign, beginning 1 February, 1119, is signalized by the termination of the Investiture controversy which, begun in the time of Gregory VII, had raged with almost unabated bitterness during the last quarter of the eleventh century and the opening years of the twelfth. […]

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December 13 – “The eyes which I must please are a hundred miles from here”

December 11, 2014

St. Jane Frances de Chantal Born at Dijon, France, 28 January, 1572; died at the Visitation Convent Moulins, 13 December, 1641. Her father was president of the Parliament of Burgundy, and leader of the royalist party during the League that brought about the triumph of the cause of Henry IV. In 1592 she married Baron […]

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December 13 – St. Odilia

December 11, 2014

St. Odilia Patroness of Alsace, born at the end of the seventh century; died about 720. According to a trustworthy statement, apparently taken from an earlier life, she was the daughter of the Frankish lord Adalrich (Aticus, Etik) and his wife Bereswinda, who had large estates in Alsace. She founded the convent of Hohenburg (Odilienberg) […]

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December 13 – The girl named Lucy, opposite of Lucifer

December 11, 2014

St. Lucy A virgin and martyr of Syracuse in Sicily, whose feast is celebrated by Latins and Greeks alike on 13 Dec. According to the traditional story, she was born of rich and noble parents about the year 283. Her father was of Roman origin, but his early death left her dependent upon her mother, […]

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December 14 – Son of a disinherited noble

December 11, 2014

St. John of the Cross Founder (with St. Teresa) of the Discalced Carmelites, doctor of mystic theology, born at Hontoveros, Old Castile, 24 June, 1542; died at Ubeda, Andalusia, 14 Dec., 1591. John de Yepes, youngest child of Gonzalo de Yepes and Catherine Alvarez, poor silk weavers of Toledo, knew from his earliest years the […]

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Andrée de Jongh: Made A Countess For Her War-Time Heroism

December 8, 2014

Again and again she risked her life to save British and American servicemen escape from Nazi-occupied Belgium and France. The daughter of a Belgian schoolmaster, Andrée de Jongh greatly admired Edith Cavell—a Red Cross nurse who was killed by the Germans during World War I for helping British soldiers escape—and was determined to emulate her […]

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We Must Clash with a Misguided Culture

December 8, 2014

“And rising up, he came to his father.” With these simple words, Saint Luke (15:20) outlines the Prodigal Son’s plan of action, which must also be ours. In our desire to leave the crisis, it is not enough to simply isolate ourselves, move away, or search for another frenetic party. We must rise up against […]

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December 9 – Banker and Saint

December 8, 2014

St. Peter Fourier Known as LE BON PÈRE DE MATTAINCOURT (Good Father of Mattaincourt), born at Mirecourt, Lorraine, 30 Nov., 1565 died at Gray, Haute-Saône, 9 Dec., 1640. At fifteen he was sent to the University of Pont-à-Mousson. His piety and learning led many noble families to ask him to educate their sons. He became […]

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December 10 – To protest the emperor, he paid special honor images and relics

December 8, 2014

Pope St. Gregory III (Reigned 731-741.) Pope St. Gregory III was the son of a Syrian named John. The date of his birth is not known. His reputation for learning and virtue was so great that the Romans elected him pope by acclamation, when he was accompanying the funeral procession of his predecessor, 11 February, […]

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December 10 – Who Was the First Pope to Live in a Palace?

December 8, 2014

Pope St. Miltiades The year of his birth is not known; he was elected pope in either 310 or 311; died 10 or 11 January, 314. After the banishment of Pope Eusebius, the Roman See was vacant for some time, probably because of the complications which has arisen on account of the apostates (lapsi), and […]

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December 11 – Pope Falsely Accused of Adultery

December 8, 2014

Pope St. Damasus I Born about 304; died 11 December, 384. His father, Antonius, was probably a Spaniard; the name of his mother, Laurentia, was not known until quite recently. Damasus seems to have been born at Rome; it is certain that he grew up there in the service of the church of the martyr […]

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December 11 – Her Name Was “Mother Marvelous”

December 8, 2014

St. María de las Maravillas de Jesús Pidal y Chico de Guzmán was born in Madrid, Spain, on 4 November 1891. She was the daughter of Luis Pidal y Mon, Marquis of Pidal, and Cristina Chico de Guzmán y Munoz. At the time her father was the Spanish ambassador to the Holy See and she grew […]

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St. Vincent of Paul and The Forsaken Children

December 4, 2014

At the time when St. Vincent lived there existed in France a cruel custom, which seems to us almost incredible. Every year in the streets of Paris alone from three to four hundred newly-born infants were left to perish. Their unnatural mothers, who might already have had a number of little ones to support, would […]

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Longing for the Father’s House

December 4, 2014

We must remember our father’s house—that rich Christian order from whence we came. That is why we have made such a great effort to describe that organic, virtuous, spontaneous, and providential order in all its calm and simple grandeur. We invoke the memory of those cohorts of legendary saints and leaders inside society from top […]

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December 5 – Noble matron faithful unto death

December 4, 2014

St. Crispina A martyr of Africa who suffered during the Diocletian persecution; born at Thagara in the Province of Africa; died by beheading at Thebeste in Numidia, 5 December, 304. Crispina belonged to a distinguished family and was a wealthy matron with children. At the time of the persecution she was brought before the proconsul […]

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December 6 – Good St. Nicholas

December 4, 2014

Life of Saint Nicholas from Legenda Aurea by Jacobus de Voragine Here beginneth the Life of Saint Nicholas the Bishop. Nicholas is said of Nichos, which is to say victory, and of laos, people, so Nicholas is as much as to say as victory of people, that is, victory of sins, which befoul people. Or […]

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December 6 – Martyr of the Muslims

December 4, 2014

St. Peter Paschal, Bishop and Martyr This saint was born in Valencia, Spain, in 1227, and descended of the ancient family of the Paschals, which had edified the Church by the triumphs of five glorious martyrs, which it produced under the Moors. Peter’s parents were virtuous and exceedingly charitable; and St. Peter Nolasco often lodged […]

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December 7 – The People Acclaimed Him as Bishop Even Though He Was Unbaptized

December 4, 2014

St. Ambrose Bishop of Milan from 374 to 397; born probably 340, at Trier, Arles, or Lyons; died 4 April, 397. He was one of the most illustrious Fathers and Doctors of the Church, and fitly chosen, together with St. Augustine, St. John Chrysostom, and St. Athanasius, to uphold the venerable Chair of the Prince […]

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December 8 – The Immaculate Conception: The Celebration of Privilege

December 4, 2014

The new dogma deeply shocked the essentially egalitarian mentality of the French Revolution, which since 1789 had despotically held sway in the West. The Blessed Virgin Mary “in the first instance of her conception, by a singular privilege and grace granted by God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Saviour of the […]

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Prince Harry admits behavior not up to princely standards

December 1, 2014

In an interview with Man of the World magazine to be released Wednesday, Prince Harry admits his behavior in Las Vegas was not up to a prince’s standards: “It was probably a classic case of me being too much Army and not enough prince.”

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Royals visit Sir Nicholas Winton, who saved hundreds of children from the Nazis

December 1, 2014

According to BBC News: The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh were given a tour of…Holyport College… During the visit, the royal couple met Sir Nicholas Winton, who lives near the school which has named its reception building after him. Sir Nicholas, dubbed the “British Schindler”, helped to save hundreds of children, mainly from Jewish […]

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American social mobility identical to medieval England

December 1, 2014

According to CBS13: A UC Davis economics professor…Gregory Clark is sharing his research as a hard truth… “America has no higher rate of social mobility than medieval England…” Clark crunched the numbers in the U.S. from the past 100 years. His data shows…that social mobility here is no different than in the rest of the […]

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Saying the truth to an immoral king, but with spirit

December 1, 2014

When passing through a town, Henry IV asked that they bring him the wittiest citizen, to entertain him during lunch. He was introduced to a M. Gaillard, who sat down at the table across from the king. The king immediately quipped: ― “What is the distance between gaillard (daring, entertaining, gallant) and paillard (libertine, dissolute)?” […]

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Grand Return Home

December 1, 2014

We have presented the specter of a great crisis that has as its immediate cause an impending economic crash that will trigger as its effect the breakdown of our national consensus and American way of life. Although this crisis will wreak great material havoc upon us, its greatest damage will be spiritual. While we have […]

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December 2 – Cause of Our Joy

December 1, 2014

Our Lady of Joy (aka Notre Dame de Liesse, or Causa Nostrae Laetitiae) In 1134 three Knights of the Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, prisoners of the Muslims in Egypt, miraculously found or received in their prison a statue of Our Lady, which they named Our Lady of Joy, or Notre Dame de Liesse. […]

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December 2 – St. Chromatius

December 1, 2014

St. Chromatius Bishop of Aquileia, died about 406-407. He was probably born at Aquileia, and in any case grew up there. He became a priest of that church and about 387 or 388, after the death of Valerianus, bishop of that important city. He was one of the most celebrated prelates of his time and […]

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December 3 – Apostle of the Indies

December 1, 2014

St. Francis Xavier Born in the Castle of Xavier near Sanguesa, in Navarre, 7 April, 1506; died on the Island of Sancian near the coast of China, 2 December, 1552. In 1525, having completed a preliminary course of studies in his own country, Francis Xavier went to Paris, where he entered the collège de Sainte-Barbe. […]

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