The men with the most authority and wisdom in Valladolid then assembled to consider where the public proclamation the new King would take place. Not finding a place in town large enough, they decided to build a platform on the Mercado field, close to the walls of the city. It took only a few hours to erect and, by afternoon, it was ready, sufficiently high and quite dignified with a red carpet and a decorous canopy covering the throne.

At sundown, when the air was cooler, the royal retinue approached the site.

It was an even more impressive display than the morning’s because now they rode splendid horses adorned with rich bridles and saddles.

Statue of Doña Berenguela of León y Castilla at the Paseo de la Argentina in the Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain.

Statue of Doña Berenguela of León y Castilla at the Paseo de la Argentina in the Retiro Park in Madrid, Spain.

Close to the Queen rode Ferdinand on his white horse, so handsome that there was not many who would not acclaim him nor old lady who would not be enchanted by him. His mother, noticing how he attracted the love of the Castilian people, forgot, at least for a day, her past sufferings and her deep concerns for the future.

When they arrived, the Queen sat on the throne with Ferdinand at her right side. A herald approached Doña Berenguera’s throne, knelt, and received a parchment from her. Taking it, he walked to the side of the king-at-arms who held the banner and, blowing his trumpet, shouted three times:

“Hear ye! Hear ye! Hear ye!”

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No one breathed a word on that field, which by the silence resembled a cemetery more than the market of Valladolid. Then, unrolling the parchment, he read with a resounding voice: “I, Doña Berenguera, Queen of Castile and Toledo, free and without debts, by my own will and with the approval of the noblemen and the representatives of the cities, joined by Parliament in the city of Valladolid, renounce these my kingdoms of Castile and Toledo in the person of my firstborn son, Don Ferdinand.”

All watched as she rose from the throne, made her son to sit there instead, removed the crown from her head and placed it on Ferdinand’s. The king-at-arms displayed the purple banner of Castile that floated majestically in the wind and, holding the uncovered sword in his hands, shouted:

“Castile! Castile! Castile! For King Don Ferdinand!”

King of Castile and León, Saint Ferdinand III. Painting by José María Rodríguez de Losada.

King of Castile and León, Saint Ferdinand III. Painting by José María Rodríguez de Losada.

“Castile for Don Ferdinand! Long live the King!” answered the voice of the people, impressive, full, impetuous and overwhelming like a torrent of water breaking its walls and flooding everything. In a triumphal cortege, they followed Ferdinand, who again mounted his white horse and departed for the Colegiata to take his oath.

With his hand on the Gospels, he swore, as had his mother that morning, to keep the laws of Castile. After the bishop severely pronounced the last words of the formula: “Rex eris si recte facis; si autem non facis, non eris,” (You will be King if you are righteous; if not, you will not be King) an ecstatic look crossed his face. He remained thus a moment. With his eyes fixed on the Crucifix on the altar, his intense gaze said to Christ: “Thou, Lord, knowest that to increase Thy kingdom and spread the cult of Thy Holy Cross is what I want.”

KSF

Sr. Maria del Carmen Fernández de Castro Cabeza, The Life of the Very Noble King of Castile and León, Saint Ferdinand III (New York: The Foundation for a Christian Civilization, Inc., 1987), 43-4.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 413

 

 

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St. Thomas Aquinas and King St. Louis IX by Niklaus Manuel.

St. Thomas Aquinas and King St. Louis IX by Niklaus Manuel.

There is a famous moment in the life of St. Thomas Aquinas that illustrates well the importance of finding arguments. St. Thomas was having lunch with King St. Louis of France. During the conversation, forgetful of the fact that he was at the table of the king, St. Thomas began thinking about other matters. Suddenly he hit his fist on the table and said, “Ergo concluso in contra manicheus” (So much for the heresy of the Manicheans!). St. Louis immediately looked to him and asked what he was talking about. St. Thomas replied that he had found a new argument to fight the Manichean heresy.*

Soldiers from 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment conduct security in Biaj, Iraq. Photo by Department of Defense.

Soldiers from 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment conduct security in Biaj, Iraq. Photo by Department of Defense.

The discovery of a new argument caused a stir since everyone at the table was a Catholic—two were even saints—and even though all were convinced that the Manicheans were in error. Immediately orders were given to call two scribes of the royal palace to take note of the new argument so that nothing would be lost. After St. Thomas’s new argument had been written down, lunch continued.

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There are various picturesque aspects to this story, but I draw your attention to one in particular: the importance given to a new argument to defend a thesis already well known by all present. Why was this important? Because they were men with a profound spirit who understood that, for those who fight for the Church, the battle of ideas was more important than the battle with weapons. Since the Church expands through the propagation of ideas, the cause of the Counter-Revolution does so by defending ideas. Therefore a new argument—for one who fights erroneous ideas—would be like what a new weapon is for the military.

Tomahawk Launch aboard the U.S. Navy’s Ticonderoga Class cruiser USS Shiloh. U.S. Naval forces launched 14 Tomahawk Cruise missiles on targets in southern Iraq on September 3, 1996.

Tomahawk Launch aboard the U.S. Navy’s Ticonderoga Class cruiser USS Shiloh. U.S. Naval forces launched 14 Tomahawk Cruise missiles on targets in southern Iraq on September 3, 1996.

* Manichaeism, a religion founded by the Persian Mani in the latter half of the third century, purported to be true synthesis of all the religious systems then known. This heresy is classified as a form of religious Dualism, since it is based on a supposed conflict between the two eternal principles of good and evil.


Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira, quoted in Tradition, Family Property Association, ed., Egalitarianism: The Metaphysical Value and Religion of Our Days – Social Leveling…Total Leveling (Glasgow: Tradition, Family, Property Association, 2011), xiii-xiv.

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August 21 – La Vallete

August 21, 2014

Jean Parisot de La Valette

Forty-eighth Grand Master of the Order of the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem; born in 1494; died in Malta, 21 Aug., 1568.

Jean Parisot de Valette, Grand Master Jean de La Valette.

Jean Parisot de Valette, Grand Master Jean de La Valette.

He came from an old family of Southern France, several members of which had been capitouls (chief magistrates) in Toulouse. When still young he entered the Order of St. John as a knight of the Language of Provence. After the taking of Rhodes by the Sultan Soliman (1522), the order had, in 1530, settled in Malta which, with the city of Tripoli, the emperor Charles V had made over to them in full sovereignty. Here the knights devoted themselves to fighting the corsairs of Barbary, who were upheld by the Turkish Sultan. During this struggle La Valette made his first campaign, and soon rose to the highest ranks in the order. In 1537 he was appointed commander and governor of Tripoli. In that city, exposed to the attacks of the famous Dragut, chief of all the corsairs of Africa, La Valette displayed his power of organization, re-establishing discipline among the Christian and Moorish troops, driving useless persons out of the town, and punishing blasphemers. He was no longer Tripoli when it was taken by Dragut in 1556.

Jean Parisot de ValetteLa Valette was unanimously chosen (18 Aug., 1557) to succeed Claude de la Sangle as grand master. He re-established his authority over the provinces of Germany and of Venice, which had refused to pay the taxes levied by general chapters, but was unable to secure from the Council of Trent a confirmation of the order’s privileges, and the restitution of commanderies usurped by Protestants. Lastly, he ardently devoted himself to fighting the Moslems. In 1560 he formed an alliance with Juan de la Cerda, Admiral of Philip II, to recover Tripoli, but the Spanish squadron wasted time in the useless conquest of the island of Jorba. The Moors of Barbary, commanded by Piale and Dragut, destroyed 22 warships of the Christians, and 4,000 Christians were killed or died of disease. Thanks to La Valette’s intrepidity, the galleys of the order were able to save several Christian ships and to capture many corsairs. At his own private expense La Valette had two galleys built and the wealthier commanders followed his example. The vessels of the Order were commanded by experienced navigators, like Romegas, who knew all the ports and even the smallest bays of the Mediterranean.

Dagger of the Grand Masters of the Knights of St John, presented in 1565 by King Philip II of Spain to Jean de la Valette.

Dagger of the Grand Masters of the Knights of St John, presented in 1565 by King Philip II of Spain to Jean de la Valette.

This naval strength soon made itself feared by the Moors of Barbary and even by the Turks. The Knights of Malta having aided Garcia of Toledo to take possession of Valez de la Gomera (southeast of the present Spanish military station of Peñon-de-Valez in the Rif), the alarmed Moors appealed to Constantinople. Before long the Maltese squadron gained a bloody victory between the islands of Zante and Cephalonia, and captured a Turkish galleon manned by 200 janizaries and laden with precious merchandise; and within five years they had taken 50 Turkish vessels. The Sultan Soliman, exasperated, ordered all his available vessels to assemble before Malta, where Dragut and the corsairs were incited to join them. Spies were sent to examine the fortifications. Don Marcia de Toledo, Viceroy of Sicily, having obtained secret information of all this, warned La Valette and endeavoured to induce Philip II to assist in the defence of Malta. La Valette summoned all the knights of Christendom, raised 2000 men in Italy, and obtained from Don Garcia two companies of Spanish troops.

Jean Parisot de la Valette

The inhabitants of Malta were organized as a militia, every priory sent money, and 600 knights from all the provinces of the order hastened to the rescue. La Valette displayed extraordinary activity, planning fortifications, helping the diggers with his own hands, inspecting magazines, and attending to the smallest details. He told the assembled knights that they had now entered upon a struggle between the Gospel and the Koran. After receiving Holy Communion, all vowed to shed their blood in defence of the Faith. But the Order of Malta was poorly supported in this crisis by the Christian princes. The King of Spain alone promised assistance, which, however, was not ready when the Turkish fleet, commanded by Mustapha, appeared before Malta on 18 May 1565. It consisted of 159 warships manned by 30,000 janizaries or spahis, and a large number of vessels were employed to carry the siege train. The defenders of Malta were 700 knights, with 8500 mercenaries and enrolled citizens and peasants.Jean Parisot de la ValetteMustapha attacked the fort of St. Elmo, and Dragut joined him with 13 galleys. In spite of the Maltese artillery, in spite of the heroism of the besieged, the Turks succeeded in taking that fort on 23 June, after an assault lasting seven hours. Thousands of Turks and the famous Dragut died in the encounter. Mustapha, exasperated by the resistance, ordered the hearts of the wounded knights to be torn out of their bodies. La Valette, on his side, had all the Turkish prisoners beheaded and forbade any more prisoners to be taken. From that time the town proper and all the forts were surrounded. On 18 August the Turks tried to enter by a breach in the wall, but were driven back after six hours’ fighting. La Valette himself, pike in hand, charged them, leading his knights. On 23 August another assault resulted in the taking of the Castille bastion, but La Valette spent that night constructing new defences. At last, on 7 September, the relieving fleet of Don Garcia de Toledo arrived. After four months of fighting, Mustapha, disheartened, raised the siege; he had lost more than 20,000 men, and abandoned his heavy artillery. Malta was saved, and the heroism of La Valette at last awakened Europe from its torpor. All the princes sent their congratulations; the pope offered him a cardinal’s hat, which he refused; 300 noblemen, among them Brantôme came and offered him their services. To protect the island from any future attack, the grand master had another town built upon the site of Fort St. Elmo (1566). This was the city of Valette (or Valletta) which made Malta impregnable, and which was still sufficiently strong in 1798 to check Bonaparte. The last years of Valette’s life were saddened by conflicts with the pope, but at the time of his death, in his seventy-fourth year, he was busy preparing “for some great deed of war and of conquest” (Brantôme).

The Main Altar of St. John's Co-Cathedral, Malta. In the crypt are the tombs of Grandmasters, including Jean Parisot de la Valette.  The inscription on his tomb is:     Here lies La Valette.     Worthy of eternal honour,     He who was once the scourge of Africa and Asia,     And the shield of Europe,     Whence he expelled the barbarians by his Holy Arms,     Is the first to be buried in this beloved city,     Whose founder he was.

The Main Altar of St. John’s Co-Cathedral, Malta. In the crypt are the tombs of Grandmasters, including Jean Parisot de la Valette. The inscription on his tomb is:
Here lies La Valette.
Worthy of eternal honour,
He who was once the scourge of Africa and Asia,
And the shield of Europe,
Whence he expelled the barbarians by his Holy Arms,
Is the first to be buried in this beloved city,
Whose founder he was.

BRANTOME, Grands capitaines francois, V (Paris, 1866), 215-39; IDEM, Des Couronnels francois: Recit du voyage de Brantôme a Malte (Paris, 1870), 407-410; Coleccion de documentos ineditos, XXVI, XXIX (Madrid, 1870), (letters of La Valette); VERLOT, Histoire des chevaliers hospitaliers, III, IV (Paris, 1726); FORNERON, Histoire de Philippe II, I (Paris, 1881), 378-89. – For bibliography of the siege of Malta, see POHLER, Bibliotheca Historico-militaris, I (Leipzig, 1880), 163 – 64.

LOUIS BRÉHIER (Catholic Encyclopedia)

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Also of interest:

After a month’s heroic resistance, the fort of St. Elmo falls to the Turks

The Necessary Spirit of the Crusader

April 30 – “Thank God for the victory”

January 17 – Sister of the Grand Master of Malta

December 2 – Cause of Our Joy

November 4 – Fearless and Faithful, He Reformed the Church

October 7 – How the Rosary saved Christendom

Knights Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem

Pontifical Orders and Titles of Nobility

Military Orders

In Forming the Holy League, St. Pius V Prepares for Victory at Lepanto

Military Order of Montesa

The Knights Templars

Young Don Juan fans the flame of Spanish chivalry

Sovereign Military Order of Malta – 900 years

Nine Hundred Years of Chivalry for the Knights of Malta

Don John of Austria runs away from Court to join the Spanish fleet headed to the relief of Malta

Grand Master Jean Parisot de la Valette: The very heart of the defense of Malta

April 30 – this saint was born to impoverished nobility. As pope, he levied a 10% tax on religious orders to finance the war against the Turks.

The mortally wounded knight from Auvergne who dragged himself to the chapel to die

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Saint Sidonius Apollinaris

Gaius Sollius (Modestus) Apollinaris Sidonius or Saint Sidonius Apollinaris (November 5[1] of an unknown year, perhaps 430 – August, 489) was a poet, diplomat, and bishop. Sidonius is “the single most important surviving author from fifth-century Gaul” according to Eric Goldberg.[2]

Subscription1He was one of four fifth-to sixth-century Gallo-Roman aristocrats whose letters survive in quantity; the others are Ruricius bishop…

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In the motu proprio Fin dalla prima, of December 18, 1903, Saint Pius X summarizes the doctrine of Leo XIII on social inequalities:

Raoul de Presles presents his translation to King Charles V, surrounded by Fathers of the Church, scholars and others

 

1. Human society, as God established it, is composed of unequal elements, just as the members of the human body are unequal. To make them all equal would be impossible, and would result in the destruction of society…

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Queenship

Pope Pius XII in the Papal Encyclical Ad Coeli Reginam proposed the traditional doctrine on the Queenship of Mary and established this feast for the Universal Church.

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Pope Pius IX said of Mary’s Queenship: “Turning her maternal Heart toward us and dealing with the affair of our salvation, she is concerned with the whole human race. Constituted by the Lord Queen of Heaven and earth, and exalted above all choirs of Angels and the ranks of…

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Pope Gregory IX

(UGOLINO, Count of Segni).

Pope Gregory IX

Pope Gregory IX

Born about 1145, at Anagni in the Campagna; died 22 August, 1241, at Rome. He received his education at the Universities of Paris and Bologna. After the accession of Innocent III to the papal throne, Ugolino, who was a nephew of Innocent III, was successively appointed papal chaplain, Archpriest of St. Peter’s, and Cardinal-Deacon of Saint’ Eustachio in 1198. In May, 1206, he succeeded Octavian as Cardinal-Bishop of Ostia and Velletri.

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A year later he and Cardinal Brancaleone were sent as papal legates to Germany to mediate between Philip of Swabia and Otto of Brunswick, both of whom laid claim to the German throne subsequent to the death of Henry VI…

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Venerable John Wall

Blessed John Jones and Blessed John Wall

Blessed John Jones and Blessed John Wall

Martyr, born in Lancashire, 1620; suffered near Worcester, 22 August, 1679; known at Douay and Rome as John Marsh, and when on the Mission under the aliases of Francis Johnson, Webb, and Dormore. The son of wealthy and staunch Lancashire Catholics, he was sent when very young to Douai College. He entered the Roman College, 5 November, 1641, was made priest, 3 December, 1645, and sent to the Mission, 12 May, 1648. On 1 Jan., 1651, he received the habit of St. Francis at St. Bonaventure’s Friary, Douai, and a year later was professed, taking the name of Joachim of St. Anne. He filled the offices of vicar and novice master at Douai until 1656, when he returned to the Mission, and for twenty years laboured zealously in Worcestershire.

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He was apprehended, December, 1678, at Rushock Court near Bromsgrove, where the sheriff’s man came to seek a debtor; his priestly character transpiring, he was tendered the Oath of Supremacy, and was committed to Worcester Gaol for refusing it. He was brought to trial at the Assizes, 25 April, on the charges of receiving and exercising his priesthood, and of refusing the oaths. A man whose vices he had reproved bore testimony to his priesthood, and he received sentence. He was then sent to London, and four times examined by Oates, Bedloe, and others in the hope of implicating him in the pretended plot; but was declared innocent of all plotting and offered his life if he would abjure his religion. Brought back to Worcester, he was executed at Redhill. On the day previous, William Levison was enabled to confess and communicate him, and at the moment of execution the same priest gave him the last absolution.

Hanged, drawn and quartered. Many of the English, by order of Elizabeth I, were martyred this way.

Hanged, drawn and quartered. Many of the English, by order of Elizabeth I, were martyred this way.

His quartered body was given to his friends, and was buried in St. Oswald’s churchyard. Mr. Levison, however, secured the martyr’s head, and it was treasured by the friars at Douai until the dissolution of that house in the French Revolution. The Franciscan nuns at Taunton possess a tooth and a bone of the martyr. The long speech he composed for his execution was circulated among the Catholics after his death; and the authorities issued as a broadsheet the public account of his execution containing “a true copy of the speech…with animadversions upon the same”. In 1879 a rood was erected in his memory in the churchyard at Harvington, whose hall was the usual home of the martyr.

J. L. Whitfield (Catholic Encyclopedia)

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St. Rose of Lima

Virgin, patroness of America, born at Lima, Peru 20 April, 1586; died there 30 August, 1617.

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Saint Rose was born Isabel Flores y de Oliva in the city of Lima, the Viceroyalty of Peru, then part of New Spain. She was one of the many children of Gaspar Flores, a harquebusier in the Imperial Spanish army, born in San Germán on the island of San Juan Bautista (now Puerto Rico), and his wife, María de Oliva, a native of Lima…

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[painting of Saint Philip]

Saint Philip Benizi
Servite Priest
(1233-1285)

Saint Philip Benizi was born in Florence on the Feast of the Assumption, 1233. That same day the Order of Servites was founded by the Mother of God. As an infant one year old, Philip spoke when in the presence of these new religious, and announced the Servants of the Virgin. Amid all the temptations of…

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St. Philip Benizi

Propagator and fifth General of the Servite Order, born at Florence, Italy, August 15, 1233; died at Todi, in Umbria, August 23, 1285.

St. Philip BeniziHis parents were scions of the renowned Benizi and Frescobaldi families. After many years of married life had left them childless, Philip was granted to them in answer to their prayers. When but five months old, on beholding St. Alexis and St. Buonagiunta approaching in quest of alms, he exclaimed: “Mother, here come our Lady’s Servants; give them an alms for the love of God”. At thirteen years of age, in view of his precocious genius, he was sent to the University of Paris. Here he led a life of study and edification, and after a brilliant career, completed his course in medicine at the University of Padua. He practiced medicine at Florence for one year, chiefly for the benefit of the poor. As a layman he lived like a, member of a religious community, entertaining high ideals. In a vision of the Blessed Virgin he was finally directed to enter the order of her servants, known as the Servites. St. Philip was received into the order in 1254 by St. Buonfiglio, its first superior. Because of his purity and deep humility, he asked to be enrolled as a simple brother, and was sent to Mt. Senario near Florence, there to continue his life of penance and sacrifice. The miraculous fountain that sprang forth in his grotto is still seen enclosed in a small Byzantine chapel built on the native rock. In 1258 while on a journey to Siena, his great ability and learning, hitherto concealed from his brethren, was accidentally discovered. He was at once ordered to prepare for Holy Orders.

St. Philip BeniziThe following year he was ordained to the priesthood by Bishop John Mangiadoro of Florence. He made great progress in sanctity, drawing his inspiration to holiness and virtue principally from the Passion of Jesus and the Sorrows of Mary. His ability was so recognized that he rose rapidly from one post in the order to another, until finally on June 5, 1267, he was unanimously chosen Superior General. In this position his administrative powers and apostolic zeal enjoyed a broad field for development. He traveled throughout Europe preaching and working miracles. Under his care the order grew in numbers and holiness, many of his spiritual children having been raised to the honors of the altar. The greatest perhaps was St. Juliana Falconieri, foundress of the Servite Nuns. After the death of Clement IV in 1268, the cardinals were about to choose St. Philip as his successor, but the saint, learning of their intention, fled secretly and remained in solitude until another choice had been made. In 1274 he was present at the Council of Lyons, where he possessed the rare and apostolic gift of tongues. When the furious strife between Guelph and Ghibelline was at its height, Philip was active everywhere as a peace-maker, especially in Florence, Pistoia, Arezzo, Forli, and Bologna. God having revealed to him his approaching end, he placed the government of the order in the hands of Blessed Lotharingus. He then repaired to Todi, where he selected the smallest and poorest convent for the scene of his death, which occurred after a short illness. Many miracles were wrought at his intercession; even the dead were raised to life. He was canonized by Clement IX in 1671.

Charles F. McGinnis (Catholic Encyclopedia)

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St. Ouen

(OWEN; DADON, Latin Audaenus).

Saint OuenArchbishop of Rouen, b. at Sancy, near Soissons about 609; d. at Clichy-la-Garenne, near Paris, 24 Aug., 683. His father, Autharius, and his mother, Aiga, belonged to the Gallo-Roman race. Shortly after Ouen’s birth they came to Ussy-sur-Marne, where he spent his childhood, with which tradition connects a series of marvelous events. Being afterwards sent to the Abbey of St. Medard he received an education which caused him to be welcomed at the court of Clothaire II a short time previous to the death of that prince. The latter’s successor, Dagobert I, made him his referendary or chancellor and profited greatly by his talents and learning. He charged him with important…

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According to The Globe and Mail:

…three permanent residents who have refused citizenship over an oath…launched a constitutional challenge last year, arguing that forcing candidates for Canadian citizenship to swear allegiance to the Queen violates the protections for free speech and freedom of religion…

But in a decision issued on Wednesday, Ontario’s top court dismissed their objections…, [and] says that would-be citizens are not actually swearing allegiance to the Queen herself as “the reference to the Queen is symbolic of our form of government and the unwritten constitutional principle of democracy.”

…Dror Bar-Natan…calls the oath “repulsive” because he says the Queen is a symbol of inequality.

To read the entire article in The Globe and Mail, please click here.

Painting by Jean Fouquet

Painting by Jean Fouquet

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Sisi, Elisabeth of AustriaA few years ago an incident occurred which is so characteristic of the little Archduchess [Elizabeth] that it is worthy of being placed on record. There is a well-known young ladies’ school at Dresden, where a great many Viennese girls are sent, when they reach the age of ten, to finish their education under the care of the celebrated Madame F————, the owner of the school in question, and an Austrian by birth. Until the autumn of the time to which I refer, the little girls were in the habit of receiving from home, once a month, small boxes containing some of the delicious confectionery for which Vienna is renowned. Unfortunately, several cases of sickness among the pupils having been caused, according to the house physician, by too many bonbons, Madame F———— gathered the young people around her one morning and declared to them, solemnly, that she absolutely forbade any more indulgences of this nature, and that she would moreover address a circular to the children’s parents requesting them not to send sweetmeats or any other toothsome dainties to them during their stay at her school.

The edict caused terrible consternation among the little gourmandes. There came very near being an open revolt against so arbitrary a measure, and matters were looking very black indeed when, suddenly, a dark-eyed, fair-haired little beauty of eleven summers climbed on a table, and silencing her noisy troop of comrades, harangued them as follows:

Painting by Jean-Étienne Liotard

Painting by Jean-Étienne Liotard

“Children,” she exclaimed, in vibrating accents, “We must be revenged! We cannot allow such injustice; we will not submit to an undeserved punishment which robs us of our only pleasure. Madame is an Austrian, and as such, she must submit to anything done by our imperial family. Do you know what? We will send a round-robin to our little Archduchess, imploring her to forbid Madame to treat us so cruelly.”

“What little Archduchess? Who is she? Where does she live?” cried such of her excited listeners as were not Austrians.

With a smile of pity for so much ignorance, the speaker explained to her now delighted audience that Archduchess Elizabeth, the Emperor’s granddaughter, was powerful at the court of Vienna, and that should she consider their prayer favorably, the whole imperial family would come forward, if necessary, to crush Madame’s decree against the importation of sweets.

Painting by Luke Fields

Painting by Luke Fields

The truth of this statement was so patent that without further delay the little girls set to work in great glee to draw up their petition — a document which cost them much pain to compose, and which ran thus:

“Dear Archduchess Elizabeth, — “We love you and your grandpapa very much, and we are here in Dresden at school, where we are generally pretty well satisfied. Today, however, something awful has happened. Madame has forbidden our dear parents to send us any more bonbons for ever so many years; no more sugar-plums, no more chocolates, no more cakes, nor anything sweet and good. So we want to ask you to help us out of our trouble, dear Archduchess! Please, please tell your dear grandpapa to send word to Madame that she is to let us have bonbons again as before. With this ardent prayer we close our letter. Our best love to your dear grandpapa and grandmamma. We all kiss your little hands, and remain your true and respectful little compatriots.”

Countess Coudenhove

Countess Coudenhove

When the long list of names had been signed to this remarkable epistle, it was carefully put in an envelope and addressed to “Die Kleine Frau Ezherzogin Elizabeth, p. Ad. Ihrem Grossvater, den Kaiser von Oësterreich, Wien.” (To the little Madame, Archduchess Elizabeth, care of her grandpapa, the Emperor of Austria, Vienna.) And with many misgivings and heartbeatings it was duly mailed.

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A week later, Madame F———— was much surprised to receive a huge box addressed to “The pupils of the F———— Institute, Dresden.” It came from Vienna, and was stamped on the lid with the imperial coat-of-arms. She immediately summoned all the children, and as soon as they caught sight of the gigantic package, the little Austrian conspirators huddled together, whispering to one another, with glowing faces and glistening eyes.

Candy roses. Photo by Sarahnocera.

Candy roses. Photo by Sarahnocera.

On the top of the box lay a pink and silver card, on which was written, in a round, childish hand: “From Archduchess Elizabeth, to her dear little compatriots in Dresden.” Under the card was a letter sealed with the imperial crest, which Madame F———— opened and read with boundless amazement. It was written by Countess Coudenhove, the lady-in-waiting to the little Archduchess, who said that as a rule no notice was taken of such petitions as had been sent by Madame F———— ‘s little Austrian pupils, but that in this instance the little Archduchess had begged so hard to be permitted to grant it that their Majesties had allowed her to choose and send the contents of the box to her dear little compatriots, with the wish that they might be allowed to enjoy them to their hearts’ content.

Photo of Bonbons, Marzipans, Chocolates by Prillen.

Photo of Bonbons, Marzipans, Chocolates by Prillen.

With shouts of joy the children, now almost beside themselves with delight, crowded round the box to examine its sweet and fragrant contents. Nothing can give an idea of their enthusiasm when, one after another, boxes of exquisite bonbons of all descriptions were brought to light — boxes made of daintily tinted silks with the imperial arms and crown stamped in gold on each of them; bags of silver tissue tied with azure ribbons and filled with chocolate pralines, each of which was wrapped in multicolored tissue-paper, with devices and mottoes; marvelous bars of Viennese nougatine enclosed in satin wrappers, on which the pictures of the Emperor and Empress were painted in water-colors; tiny crystal bonbonnières containing sugared petals of roses and violets and orange blossoms, certainly prepared by fairies for the special delectation of good little Austrian subjects of his royal and imperial majesty, the Emperor Franz-Joseph! The shouts almost deafened poor Madame F———— , who, not so very black at heart after all, could only end by forgiving her pupils, to whom she suggested that in return for the kindness and favor just received, they would do well to embroider a handsome bedquilt for their little benefactress.

Painting by Frederick Richard Pickersgill

Painting by Frederick Richard Pickersgill

This piece of work was duly brought to completion, and it was superb, all the little ladies having labored at it with a will, while they nibbled now and again some of the Archduchess’s exquisite bonbons, loyal little Austrian monarchists forever! The quilt was presented to her imperial highness upon her birthday, and gave her much pleasure.

 

Marguerite Cunliffe-Owen, The Martyrdom of an Empress (New York: Harper & Brothers, Publishers, 1902), 235-9.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 412

 

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Written by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

Aerial Photo of Windsor Castle

Consider the aerial view of Windsor Castle shown in the upper picture. The first impression one has is of a setting for a fairy tale — the immensity of the edifice, the marvelous variety of its parts, the delicacy and strength affirmed in all of them, everything suggests that one is in the presence of some­thing that goes far beyond daily reality.

This edifice, this fantastic set of edifices, is at one and the same time the symbol and treasure chest of an institu­tion: the British royalty. In this symbol, like so many others of traditional England, the appearances do not as yet bear the mark of Protestantism, liberalism, or socialism. What is expressed in these granite forms is still the medieval and Catholic concept of the divine origin of public power, the true majesty that should surround any political regime, and the paternal mark that should char­acterize it.

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Paternal mark, we say. This castle does not aim to show mass, but talent. It was made not to intimidate, but to enchant.

The subject who contemplates it does not tremble at its sight; he does not feel like fleeing, but like entering.

*   *   *

Windsor Kitchen

The relations between the great ones and the small ones are influenced by this ambience. The nobility of the lord is transmitted to his servant. Thus the immense kitchen of Windsor, which is very authentically a kitchen, is indisputably a high, noble, and worthy kitchen of a castle, one that communicates something of the royal dignity itself to the humble, servile activity of the cook and gives it a splendor that is, as it were, regal.

Windsor Kitchen

This is because in Christian civilization the grandeur of the lord does not humiliate the servant — but elevates him.

 

 

 

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Saint Helena

(also known as Saint Helen, Helena Augusta or Helena of Constantinople)

Statue in Erfurt, Germany

Statue in Erfurt, Germany

The mother of Constantine the Great, born about the middle of the third century, possibly in Drepanum (later known as Helenopolis) on the Nicomedian Gulf; died about 330. She was of humble parentage; St. Ambrose, in his “Oratio de obitu Theodosii”, referred to her as a stabularia, or inn-keeper. Nevertheless, she became the lawful wife of Constantius Chlorus. Her first and only son, Constantine, was born in Naissus in Upper Moesia, in the year 274. The statement made by English chroniclers of the Middle Ages, according to which Helena was supposed to have been the daughter of a British prince, is entirely without historical foundation. It may arise from the misinterpretation of a term used in the fourth chapter of the panegyric on Constantine’s marriage with Fausta, that Constantine, oriendo (i. e., “by his beginnings,”…

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St. Louis of Toulouse

Painting of Saint Louis of Toulouse by Giovanni Antonio Pordenone at the National Gallery in London.

Painting of Saint Louis of Toulouse by Giovanni Antonio Pordenone at the National Gallery in London.

Bishop of Toulouse, generally represented vested in pontifical garments and holding a book and a crosier, b. at Brignoles, Provence, Feb., 1274; d. there, 19 Aug., 1297. He was the second son of Charles II of Anjou, called the Lame, King of Naples (1288- 1309), and nephew of St. Louis IX of France; and of Mary of Hungary, whose great-aunt was St. Elizabeth of Hungary. If in some and even early sources (Analecta Franciscana, IV, 310) he is called primogenitus, it is only because he succeeded to the rights of his eldest brother, Charles Martel (d. 1295). In 1288 Louis was sent with two of…

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St. Bernard of Clairvaux

Born in 1090, at Fontaines, near Dijon, France; died at Clairvaux, 21 August, 1153.

St Bernard of Clairvaux

St Bernard of Clairvaux

His parents were Tescelin, lord of Fontaines, and Aleth of Montbard, both belonging to the highest nobility of Burgundy. Bernard, the third of a family of seven children, six of whom were sons, was educated with particular care, because, while yet unborn, a devout man had foretold his great destiny. At the age of nine years, Bernard was sent to a much renowned school at Chatillon-sur-Seine, kept by the secular canons of Saint-Vorles. He had a great taste for literature and devoted himself for some time to poetry. His success…

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Saint PhilbertSaint Philibert of Jumièges (c. 608–684) was the only son of a Frankish noble, a courtier of Dagobert I. He was educated at court by Saint Ouen and entered monastic life at Rebais and was elected abbot at the age of 20.

In 654, St. Philibert received a gift of land from Clovis II on which he founded Jumièges Abbey. He drew up a Rule for this abbey which he used for the religious institutions he later came to govern or found…

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A beautiful anecdote is narrated by the Chronicle that illustrates the chivalrous and noble, although at the same time, quite simple spirit with which Ferdinand had imbued his army. The King lived in the midst of his vassals like an ancient patriarch with his family. He did not need to isolate himself to inspire respect, because the holiness that shone in him was such that the closer they saw him the more they respected and loved him.

Saint Ferdinand III

One clear and crystal morning during the Andalusian winter, the King had just returned from attending Holy Mass. Enjoying the sunrise, he stayed at the door of his tent talking to Lorenzo Suárez when he saw two knights who, followed by their respective esquires, were leaving the camp, cantering off to the southern plain. “Where are they going?” the King asked.

“They must be going to guard the pasture, Lord. Perhaps they are late.”

Following them with his eyes distractedly, Don Ferdinand resumed his conversation with Suárez when the sudden appearance of seven Moors barring the way of the two knights joltingly attracted his attention. Both knights stopped for a moment; one of them took his weapons from the esquire and, motionless, faced the Moors. The other turned his horse toward the camp, taking a detour to avoid notice. The eyes of the King sparked with anger. “Look, Lorenzo Suárez! See how that wicked knight leaves his companion at such a critical moment!” Suárez squinted to see better. The King continued: “Lorenzo, go and send others to help him, as he is alone against seven!”

Moors

But Lorenzo Suárez, who had just noticed on the brave knight’s shield the white and purple waves of the Vargas, turned calmly to Ferdinand and proposed:

“Let him be, Lord, for that knight is Garci Pérez de Vargas, who needs no help for such a small number of Moors. If the Moors recognize his shield, they will not dare attack him, and if they do, you will see today the marvels he will perform.”

How unaware was the good Garcí Perez, who became so easily embarrassed and blushed when his heroic deeds were advertised, that the King’s eyes were on him at that moment! Ferdinand and Suárez watched as Vargas continued on his way in an impetuous gallop, his spear well-aimed and his arm firm in the shield’s handle. When he reached the seven Mohammedans, they moved away, separating themselves to both sides of the trail without even daring to face him.

But this was not the end of the incident. After he had gone some distance, Garcí started to remove his helmet. Putting it back on, he took his spear again and slowly retraced his steps to the place where the Moors remained stationary, four on one side and three on the other. In a remarkable performance, he stopped in the middle of the road between them and picked up something from the ground with the spear’s tip. Then, with the same calmness with which he had come, he left, permanently this time.

Garci Pérez de Vargas

Statue of Garci Pérez de Vargas at Plaza Nueva in Seville

“What could it be?” the King commented to Lorenzo. “You must ask him as soon as he comes in this evening.”

Both laughed, thinking of the embarrassment that was awaiting the poor Garcí Pérez.

That evening, as the King was conversing with his noblemen at his tent’s door, those who had been guarding the pasture that day came to pay homage to him. Noticing Garcí Pérez, the King nodded slightly to Lorenzo Suárez, and asked him, smiling: “Where were you going, Garcí Pérez, when you left the camp this morning?”

“I was going to guard the grazing animals, Lord.”

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Here Don Lorenzo intervened: “And who was the knight who was accompanying you?”

Garcí became as red as scarlet when he realized they had seen everything and answered: “I do not know him, and I do not know who he is.”

He bowed to kiss the hand of the King who looked at him, interiorly pleased. He was as pleased with Garci for showing the proper Christian honor in protecting another’s reputation as he had been that morning when witnessing Garci’s extraordinary courage. Taking Garci’s right hand, he shook it vigorously and said to him: “You are, in truth, Garci Pérez, a good friend!”

A chain mail Coif

A chain mail Coif

Of course, Vargas hurried to escape further compliments. But to his acute embarrassment, twenty-four hours later, there was no one in camp who did not know the details of the episode. It was discovered that the object that fell was his coif; it was also known that when his poor esquire had tried to dissuade him from entering again between the seven Moors, Garci had answered: “Do not mention it again! As you can well see, without a coif I do not have a head!”

Only the identity of the cowardly knight was never discovered, neither from Vargas, in spite of all the insistence of his friend Lorenzo, nor from his esquire, whom Pérez de Vargas had bound by an oath never to reveal the identity of the other knight who had so cowardly abandoned him.

KSF

Sr. Maria del Carmen Fernández de Castro Cabeza, The Life of the Very Noble King of Castile and León, Saint Ferdinand III (Mount Kisco, NY: The Foundation for a Christian Civilization, 1987), pp. 231-3.

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 411

 

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Elites and Masses in the Counter-Revolutionary Tactics

August 14, 2014

To the extent possible, the Counter-Revolution should try to win over the multitudes. However, it should not make this its chief goal in the short run. The counter-revolutionary has no reason to be discouraged because of the fact that the great majority of men are not presently on his side. Indeed, an exact study of history shows us that it was not the masses who made the Revolution. […]

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August 14 – Founding Father

August 14, 2014

Pierre Chastellain Missionary among the Huron Indians, born at Senlis, France, in 1606; died at Quebec, 14 August, 1684. He entered the Society of Jesus in 1624 and at the age of thirty sailed from France with two future martyrs, Fathers Isaac Jogues and Charles Garnier, and the new Governor of Canada, Montmagny, the successor […]

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August 14 – St. Eusebius, Roman patrician and priest

August 14, 2014

St. Eusebius of Rome A presbyter at Rome; date of birth unknown; d. 357(?). He was a Roman patrician and priest, and is mentioned with distinction in Latin martyrologies. The ancient genuine martyrology of Usuard styles him confessor at Rome under the Arian emperor Constantius and adds that he was buried in the cemetery of […]

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August 15 – The Knights of St. John capture Rhodes and establish their sovereignty

August 14, 2014

On 15 August, 1310, under the leadership of Grand Master Foulques de Villaret, the Knights of St. John captured the island in spite of the Greek emperor, Andronicus II. The Knights of Rhodes, the successors of the Hospitallers of St. John, were distinguished from the latter in many ways. In the first place, the grand […]

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August 16 – His incorrupt right hand is treasured as the most sacred relic in Hungary

August 14, 2014

St. Stephen of Hungary First King of Hungary, born at Gran, 975; died 15 August, 1038. He was a son of the Hungarian chief Géza and was baptized, together with his father, by Archbishop St. Adalbert of Prague in 985, on which occasion he changed his heathen name Vaik (Vojk) into Stephen. In 995 he […]

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August 16 – Apostle of the North

August 14, 2014

St. Hyacinth Dominican, called the Apostle of the North, son of Eustachius Konski of the noble family of Odrowacz [or Odrowaz]; born 1185 at the castle of Lanka, at Kamin, in Silesia, Poland…; died 15 August, 1257, at Cracow. Feast, 16 Aug. A near relative of Saint Ceslaus, he made his studies at Cracow, Prague, […]

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August 17 – Her great beauty aroused the jealousy of the queen

August 14, 2014

St. Beatrix da Silva A Portuguese nun, died 1 September, 1490. In Portuguese she is known as Blessed Brites. She was a member of the house of Portalegre and descended from the royal family of Portugal. She accompanied the Portuguese Princess Isabel to Spain, when she married John II of Castile. There Beatrix seems to […]

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Richard III reburial date announced

August 11, 2014

According to Expatica: The remains of English king Richard III will be reburied at Leicester Cathedral in March 2015…the University of Leicester announced on Thursday. Richard will be reinterred on March 26 in one of three services to remember his life and death in 1485. Accompanied by a cortege, his remains will arrive at the […]

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Charles V goes to Confession

August 11, 2014

In making his confession, Charles V brought up personal sins, but said no word about those linked to his office of State. Noticing the omission, the confessor priest rebuked the sovereign, saying: “—Very well. You’ve told me about the sins of Charles. So tell me now about the sins of the Emperor.” Edmond Guérard, Dictionnaire […]

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Nothing Can Defeat a People That Truly Loves God

August 11, 2014

When men resolve to cooperate with the grace of God, the marvels of history are worked: the conversion of the Roman Empire; the formation of the Middle Ages; the reconquest of Spain, starting from Covadonga; all the events that result from the great resurrection of soul of which peoples are also capable. These resurrections are […]

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August 11 – János Hunyady

August 11, 2014

(JOHN) Governor of Hungary, born about 1400; died 11 August, 1456; the heroic defender of the Catholic Faith against the advance of the Osmanli; father of King Matthias I (Corvinus) of Hungary. The origin and parentage of his family was not ascertained until recently, when modern investigation cleared up the numerous legends which surrounded the […]

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August 11 – As soldiers scaled the walls of the convent, she met them with ciborium in hand and put them to flight

August 11, 2014

St. Clare of Assisi Cofoundress of the Order of Poor Ladies, or Clares, and first Abbess of San Damiano; born at Assisi, 16 July, 1194; died there 11 August, 1253. She was the eldest daughter of Favorino Scifi, Count of Sasso-Rosso, the wealthy representative of an ancient Roman family, who owned a large palace in […]

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August 12 – St. Jane Frances de Chantal

August 11, 2014

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 de Chantal, and lived in […]

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August 12 – He opposed royal absolutism

August 11, 2014

Pope Blessed Innocent XI (Benedetto Odescalchi) Born at Como, 16 May, 1611; died at Rome, 11 August, 1689. He was educated by the Jesuits at Como, and studied jurisprudence at Rome and Naples. Urban VIII appointed him successively prothonotary, president of the Apostolic Camera, commissary at Ancona, administrator of Macerata, and Governor of Picena. Innocent […]

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August 13 – The Ottomans lived in fear of this Capuchin

August 11, 2014

Blessed Mark of Aviano (1631–1699) Capuchin friar. His baptismal name was Carlo Domenico Cristofori, his birthplace Aviano, a small community in the Republic of Venice (Italy). From an early age, he felt attracted to a life of devotion and martyrdom. Educated at the Jesuit College in Gorizia, at 16 he tried to reach the island […]

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August 13 – Crusader nun

August 11, 2014

Bl. Gertrude of Aldenberg Abbess of the Premonstratensian convent of Aldenberg, near Wetzlar, in the Diocese of Trier; born about 1227, died 13 August, 1297. She was the youngest of three children of Louis VI, margrave of Thuringia, and his wife St. Elizabeth of Hungary. Gertrude’s father died on his way to the Holy Land […]

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Queen Elizabeth’s uncle killed in the Battle of Loos

August 7, 2014

According to the Daily Mail: The Queen has a link with the conflict as her uncle Captain Fergus Bowes-Lyon was killed in the Battle of Loos in 1915, which preceded the Somme campaign. The late Queen Elizabeth began a royal tradition of having her wedding bouquet left at the grave of the Unknown Warrior at […]

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Prince Georg of Prussia: do not let yourself be stigmatized by past; we must live with the bad and the good

August 7, 2014

According to the Irish Times: “I have never let myself be stigmatised by my past,” he says. “We cannot choose our past; we have to live with…the bad and the good.” “Prussia has always polarised opinion, but I think we’re coming to a point where an objective view of things is finally possible. …[T]here is […]

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St. Louis IX humbly accepts a woman’s upbraiding

August 7, 2014

Many were those who criticized St. Louis IX’s fervor for the faith, but they never succeeded in getting him to slacken in the fulfillment of his duties.  One day, a woman who had cause for complaint against Bishop Jean de Fouillense awaited for the king to come by, and as he came down the stairs, […]

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The Hummingbird

August 7, 2014

by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira  October 26, 1980 ONCE as I was sitting in the small porch of a farmhouse, a hummingbird suddenly stopped in the air and began sucking nectar from the flowers of climbing ivy. He ‘kissed’ each flower in turn. The hummingbird’s flight was similar to an arrow’s trajectory — so inflexible […]

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Rabbit St. Dominic

August 7, 2014

  Coniglio San Domenico (Rabbit St. Dominic) Ingredients: 2¼ pound rabbit 3 Artichokes, medium (Canned artichokes may be used instead.) 1 Lemon 6 Tbsp. Olive Oil ½ C.  Onion, Chopped  ½ C. Black Olives 1 sprig Marjoram 6 Leaves of Sage Salt and Pepper ½ C. White Wine Chicken Stock 1 Tbsp. Tomato Paste 2 […]

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August 7 – Pope St. Sixtus II

August 7, 2014

Pope St. Sixtus II (XYSTUS) Elected 31 Aug., 257, martyred at Rome, 6 Aug., 258. His origin is unknown. The “Liber Pontificalis” says that he was a Greek by birth, but this is probably a mistake, originating from the false assumption that he was identical with a Greek philosopher of the same name, who was […]

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August 7 – St. Cajetan

August 7, 2014

St. Cajetan (GAETANO.) Nobleman of the dynasties of Da Porto and Thiene of Vicenza, Italy. Founder of the Theatines, born October, 1480 at Vicenza in Venetian territory; died at Naples in 1547. Under the care of a pious mother he passed a studious and exemplary youth, and took his degree as doctor utriusque juris at […]

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August 8 – The Rosary as a weapon

August 7, 2014

St. Dominic Founder of the Order of Preachers, commonly known as the Dominican Order; born at Calaroga, in Old Castile, c. 1170; died 6 August, 1221. His parents, Felix Guzman and Joanna of Aza, undoubtedly belonged to the nobility of Spain, though probably neither was connected with the reigning house of Castile, as some of […]

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August 8 – He told his king that anyone who betrays Jesus could betray their king

August 7, 2014

St. Hormisdas (Martyred c. 420) Isdegerdes, king of Persia, renewed the persecution which Cosroes II had raised against the church. It is not easy, says Theodoret, to describe or express the cruelties which were then invented against the disciples of Christ. Some were flayed alive, others had the skin torn from off their backs only, […]

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August 10 – “Turn me over. That side is cooked.”

August 7, 2014

St. Lawrence Martyr; died 10 August, 258. St. Lawrence, one of the deacons of the Roman Church, was one of the victims of the persecution of Valerian in 258, like Pope Sixtus II and many other members of the Roman clergy. At the beginning of the month of August, 258, the emperor issued an edict, […]

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August 10 – His sister founded the Conceptionists

August 7, 2014

Blessed João Mendes de Silva Better known as Amadeus of Portugal, O.F.M., (1420–1482), was a Portuguese nobleman who became first a monk, then left that life to become a friar of the Franciscan Order. Later he became a reformer of that Order, which led to his founding of a distinct branch of the Friars Minor […]

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Heroic mother and sons stopped an evil King — the story of the Maccabees

August 4, 2014

In the Sacred Scriptures we read of a mother who had seven sons whom she brought up from childhood to serve and love God. It happened that the tyrant Antiochus, who hated God and His holy religion, and who wished to root out of the Jewish nation the worship of the one true God, came […]

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August 3 – The day the bishop cursed his country

August 4, 2014

On August 3, 1941, Bishop Clemens August Graf von Galen informed his listeners in a third sermon about the continued desecration of Catholic churches, the closing of convents and monasteries, and the deportation and murder of mentally ill people (who were sent to undisclosed destinations), while a notice was sent to family members stating that […]

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How the Queen helps

August 4, 2014

According to The Mirror: Prime Ministers traditionally meet with the monarch each week to update them on the important issues facing the nation. “…it is of great benefit to me,” Mr Cameron said. “I find it helps sort out the problems in my own head about the things we need to do.” He added: “It […]

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The Christian Spirit and the Pagan Spirit Expressed in Architecture

August 4, 2014

Written by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira The United Nations Organization (U.N.O.) is the keystone of the contemporary world. Thus, the buildings designed to house it should, by the majesty of their lines and proportions, express the high function for which they are destined. Our Photo shows the U.N. administration building. Despite its enormous dimensions, we […]

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August 4 – St. Eleutherius

August 4, 2014

St. Eleutherius (Fr. Eleutière), Bishop of Tournai at the beginning of the sixth century. Historically there is very little known about St. Eleutherius, but he was without doubt the first Bishop of Tournai. Theodore, whom some give as his immediate predecessor, was either a bishop of Tours, whose name was placed by mistake on the […]

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August 4 – Carthusian Martyrs: The Lone Survivor

August 4, 2014

May 4 – First Group of Carthusian Martyrs June 19 – Second Group of Carthusian Martyrs May-June – Third and Fourth Groups August 4 – The Lone Survivor For some reason Brother William Horne was kept alive. Refusing to abandon his religious habit, he was not attainted till 1540, when he was hanged, disembowelled, and […]

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August 5 – Valor in a King

August 4, 2014

St. Oswald of Northumbria, King and Martyr The English Saxon kingdom of Northumbria was founded by Ida in 547. After his death the northern part called Bernicia was preserved by his children; but Deira, that is, the southern part, comprising Yorkshire and Lancashire, was occupied by Ælla or Alla, and after his death was recovered […]

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August 6 – Garcia Moreno: Heroic President of Ecuador

August 4, 2014

by José Maria dos Santos Gabriel Garcia Moreno, heroic President of Ecuador, assassinated for his Faith and Christian Charity. Manly Catholic of intransigent principles, slain by the enemies of the Faith because of his consistency and courage in defense of the Church and Papacy Gabriel Garcia Moreno was born in Guayaquil, in southern Ecuador on […]

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August 6 – He told his assassins “God does not die!”

August 4, 2014

Garcia Moreno Ecuadorean patriot and statesman; born at Guayaquil, 24 December, 1821; assassinated at Quito, 6 August, 1875. His father, Gabriel García Gomez, a native of Villaverde, in Old Castile, had been engaged in commerce at Callao before removing to Guayaquil, where he married Dona Mercedes Moreno, the mother of the future Ecuadorean martyr president. […]

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August 6 – Noble widower made pope

August 4, 2014

Pope St. Hormisdas Date of birth unknown, elected to the Holy See, 514; died at Rome, 6 August, 523. This able and sagacious pontiff belonged to a wealthy and honourable family of Frosinone (Frusino) in the Campagna di Roma (Latium). Before receiving higher orders he had been married; his son became pope under the name […]

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Is Prince Harry good at anything?

July 31, 2014

According to The Telegraph: Charles Innes-Ker, the Marquess of Bowmont and Cessford, who oversaw Prince Harry’s stint in the Household Cavalry Regiment, described him as a “…very good officer and his soldiers really admired him.” The 33-year-old served in the Blues and Royals for five years, which included tours of Iraq and spent “two years […]

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The Haughty Eleanor of Aquitaine turns to God for Help

July 31, 2014

[Eleanor of Aquitaine] and Bernard of Clairvaux met in a private room and began their tête-à-tête. Saint and madcap queen—they made an extraordinary pair…. However, Eleanor remained sufficiently self-possessed to tell him composedly what troubled her. “During all the seven years that she had lived with the king she had remained barren, apart from one […]

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From Frivolity To An Encounter With God

July 31, 2014

“I Discovered I Had a Soul” June 30 2014 by Tradición y Acción por un Perú mayor Imagine a young television journalist who hosted a leading program on current issues and also stood out for her family name, talent, beauty and charm, a considerable fortune, an eminent social position both locally and internationally; who shone […]

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