Happy Birthday Carolina Cannonball!

July 10, 2013

Happy Birthday Carolina Cannonball!

Visit The Crescat and wish her well!


A Father Z Favorite: Saint Gianna Molla

April 28, 2013

Saint Gianna Molla

28 April 2008

Prepare to be amazed! The 2nd miracle of St. Gianna Molla

CATEGORY: SESSIUNCULUM — Fr. John Zuhlsdorf @ 3:54 pm

I have posted this before, but it seemed appropriate to repost it today, the anniversary of the death of St. Gianna Molla in great year of 1962.  It is her feast day today.  This is one of the saints of our time whom I would like to see included in an updated version of the traditional Roman calendar, which could stand some touching up, frankly.

In 2005 I wrote a piece in the Catholic Online Forum on the 2nd miracle through the intercession of St. Gianna. 

I reproduce it here, somewhat edited, on her feast day.  The account of this miracle gave me shivers.  I had to share it.  Recently we heard news about a possible miracle for Ven. John Henry Newman and the process for the miracle at the Congregation (here and especially here).  Sometimes we don’t get many details about what these miracles are all about.

You perhaps can fall into wondering, “Was it really all that unusual?

You decide.

Here is my original post.  I wrote this when I was pretty much thinking only in Italian, so if it sounds odd here and there, that is why:

Since I have just recently finished over 100 hours of training at the Congregation for Causes of Saints concerning the history, theology and juridial dimensions of causes of beatification and canonization (investigating the life, heroic virtues, martyrdom, reputation of holiness, reputation of martyrdom, miracles, etc.), I figured I should put some of that training to use and occasionally produce some of it here with some comments that might be of use to others. After all, what training I get isn’t just for me: it has to be for the whole Church or it is worth only the cost of the parchment.

We had the chance to learn from and question the officials of the Congregation, the experts who collaborate with it, and the physicians and historians who are experts consultants. We had lectures from the Prefect, Secretary and Under-Secretary, the Promotor of the Faith (so-called “Devil’s Advocate” is a misnomer, really) and the Relator General. We had tours of the archives and attended the proceedings of the opening of a cause in the Roman phase. Abundant materials were provided and we were, naturally, allowed then to be thoroughly tested on them.

Going into the course I was not sure what to expect, but I brought a certain measure of sceptism about some things I had heard (mostly due to faulty and insufficient information, I see now). I heard stories of lives and of miracles which left me nearly with my jaw on the table as I listened and saw the documentation.

This was a privilege which for the rest of my priesthood will affect how I can help other people understand things about the life of grace in a way I could Read the rest of this entry »


5 years ago: Paola Brenda sacrifices life for “gift of motherhood, the gift of having children

April 8, 2013

Paola Brenda sacrifices life for “gift of motherhood, the gift of having children”

By Michael Baggot

PIEVE DI SOLIGO, Italy, May 1, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In an act of sacrifice comparable to that of pro-life patroness St. Gianna Beretta Molla, Italian mother Paola Breda recently died after having declined potentially life-saving cancer treatment that could have harmed her unborn child.

Breda was diagnosed with breast cancer six months into her pregnancy with her child Nicola, but postponed treatment until after Nicola’s birth.

During her funeral, Vittorio Veneto Bishop Corrado Pizziolo called Breda an exemplification of Jesus Christ’s Gospel call “to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

“What Jesus did – the Gospel which He lived for us – this is what we see carried out in the life of our sister,” said the Bishop according to the Italian newspaper Avvenire.

Father Giuseppe Nadal told Radio Vaticana that Breda was disappointed that she and her husband Loris Amodei were unable to have a child until a decade into their marriage.

Both Breda’s first child, Illaria, and her second child, Nicola, brought their mother great joy, said the priest. Fr. Nadal also recounted a teary-eyed Breda coming to him during her second pregnancy.

“‘I’ve been diagnosed with cancer, and they are suggesting chemotherapy, but that would hurt the baby. I absolutely don’t want that, because I always asked for the gift of motherhood, the gift of having children,” said Breda.

St. Molla was a Milanese pediatric doctor pregnant with her fourth child when she learned of a fibroma in her uterus and declined either the abortion or complete hysterectomy that would have saved her life.

Before surgery to rescue her unborn child, St. Molla told doctors, “If you must decide between me and the child, do not hesitate: choose the child – I insist on it. Save him.”

Please pray for the repose of the soul of Paola Breda.


10 YEARS LATER: Pat Buchan – “An index of Catholicism’s decline”

December 11, 2012
An index of Catholicism’s decline



Posted: December 11, 2002
1:00 am Eastern 

By Patrick J. Buchanan
© 2008 Creators Syndicate, Inc.

 

As the Watergate scandal of 1973-1974 diverted attention from the far greater tragedy unfolding in Southeast Asia, so, too, the scandal of predator-priests now afflicting the Catholic Church may be covering up a far greater calamity.

Thirty-seven years after the end of the only church council of the 20th century, the jury has come in with its verdict: Vatican II appears to have been an unrelieved disaster for Roman Catholicism.

Liars may figure, but figures do not lie. Kenneth C. Jones of St. Louis has pulled together a slim volume of statistics he has titled Index of Leading Catholic Indicators: The Church Since Vatican II.

His findings make prophets of Catholic traditionalists who warned that Vatican II would prove a blunder of historic dimensions, and those same findings expose as foolish and naive those who believed a council could reconcile Catholicism and modernity. When Pope John XXIII threw open the windows of the church, all the poisonous vapors of modernity entered, along with the Devil himself.

Here are Jones’ grim statistics of Catholicism’s decline:

     

  • Priests. While the number of priests in the United States more than doubled to 58,000, between 1930 and 1965, since then that number has fallen to 45,000. By 2020, there will be only 31,000 priests left, and more than half of these priests will be over 70. 
  • Ordinations. In 1965, 1,575 new priests were ordained in the United States. In 2002, the number was 450. In 1965, only 1 percent of U.S. parishes were without a priest. Today, there are 3,000 priestless parishes, 15 percent of all U.S. parishes. 
  • Seminarians. Between 1965 and 2002, the number of seminarians dropped from 49,000 to 4,700, a decline of over 90 percent. Two-thirds of the 600 seminaries that were operating in 1965 have now closed. 
  • Sisters. In 1965, there were 180,000 Catholic nuns. By 2002, that had fallen to 75,000 and the average age of a Catholic nun is today 68. In 1965, there were 104,000 teaching nuns. Today, there are 8,200, a decline of 94 percent since the end of Vatican II. 
  • Religious Orders. For religious orders in America, the end is in sight. In 1965, 3,559 young men were studying to become Jesuit priests. In 2000, the figure was 389. With the Christian Brothers, the situation is even more dire. Their number has shrunk by two-thirds, with the number of seminarians falling 99 percent. In 1965, there were 912 seminarians in the Christian Brothers. In 2000, there were only seven. The number of young men studying to become Franciscan and Redemptorist priests fell from 3,379 in 1965 to 84 in 2000. 
  • Catholic schools. Almost half of all Catholic high schools in the United States have closed since 1965. The student population has fallen from 700,000 to 386,000. Parochial schools suffered an even greater decline. Some 4,000 have disappeared, and the number of pupils attending has fallen below 2 million – from 4.5 million.

Though the number of U.S. Catholics has risen by 20 million since 1965, Jones’ statistics show that the power of Catholic belief and devotion to the Faith are not nearly what they were.

     

  • Catholic Marriage. Catholic marriages have fallen in number by one-third since 1965, while the annual number of annulments has soared from 338 in 1968 to 50,000 in 2002. 
  • Attendance at Mass. A 1958 Gallup Poll reported that three in four Catholics attended church on Sundays. A recent study by the University of Notre Dame found that only one in four now attend. 
  • Only 10 percent of lay religious teachers now accept church teaching on contraception. Fifty-three percent believe a Catholic can have an abortion and remain a good Catholic. Sixty-five percent believe that Catholics may divorce and remarry. Seventy-seven percent believe one can be a good Catholic without going to mass on Sundays. By one New York Times poll, 70 percent of all Catholics in the age group 18 to 44 believe the Eucharist is merely a “symbolic reminder” of Jesus.

At the opening of Vatican II, reformers were all the rage. They were going to lead us out of our Catholic ghettos by altering the liturgy, rewriting the Bible and missals, abandoning the old traditions, making us more ecumenical, and engaging the world. And their legacy?

Four decades of devastation wrought upon the church, and the final disgrace of a hierarchy that lacked the moral courage of the Boy Scouts to keep the perverts out of the seminaries, and throw them out of the rectories and schools of Holy Mother Church.

Through the papacy of Pius XII, the church resisted the clamor to accommodate itself to the world and remained a moral beacon to mankind. Since Vatican II, the church has sought to meet the world halfway.

Jones’ statistics tell us the price of appeasement.

SOURCE: http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=29948

 

U.S. Data 1965 1975 1985 1995 2000 2005 2007
Diocesan priests 35,925 36,005 35,052 32,349 30,607 28,702 27,971
Religious priests 22,707 22,904 22,265 16,705 15,092 14,137 13,478
Total priests 58,632 58,909 57,317 49,054 45,699 42,839 41,449
Priestly ordinations 994 771 533 511 442 454 456
Graduate-level seminarians 8,325 5,279 4,063 3,172 3,474 3,308 3,274
Permanent deacons –  898 7,204 10,932 12,378 14,574 15,409
Religious brothers 12,271 8,625 7,544 6,535 5,662 5,451 5,015
Religious sisters 179,954 135,225 115,386 90,809 79,814 68,634 63,699
Parishes 17,637 18,515 19,244 19,331 19,236 18,891 18,634
Without a resident priest pastor
549 702 1,051 2,161 2,843 3,251 3,238
Catholic population 45.6m 48.7m 52.3m 57.4m 59.9m 64.8m 64.4m
Percent of U.S. population 24% 23% 23% 23% 22% 23% 22%
Catholic elementary schools


6,979
6,923
6,574
6,288
Students in Catholic elementary schools


1.991m
2.013m
1.779m
1.697m
Catholic secondary schools


1,238
1,221
1,225
1,210
Students in Catholic secondary schools


614,571
639,954
640,952
623,527

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