Holy Saturday and the Harrowing of Hell

Today is Holy Saturday and I hope that your Lent has been a fine and fruitful one. I didn’t blog except for a few times (I was ‘around’ but taken up with things.) The seasons come and they go; we as Catholics learn to live with the Liturgical Year as it helps us with the …

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33 Reasons NOT to walk the Camino

If you have been reading this blog for the past several years and retain a good memory for certain oddities, then you would know that I hold an obsession regarding the film “The Way.” It is a film directed by Emilio Estevez and starred his father, Martin Sheen. It is about a man (Sheen) who’s son …

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Conversion of St. Paul

Today is January 25th, the day set aside on the Church calendar to celebrate the Conversion if St. Paul the Apostle. You know the story: Paul, still known as ‘Saul,’ a particularly zealous Pharisee who took special delight in arresting and bringing to capital punishment followers of “the Way,” as the Jewish sect that recognized …

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Year of St. Joseph

On the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception, Pope Francis issued the Apostolic Letter Patris Corde which established these upcoming twelve months as the “Year of St. Joseph.” This had long been speculated by those who do that sort of thing, and they were finally proven correct. Like other “Year of’s…” the faithful among us are to delve …

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St. Andrew Christmas Novena

Advent started today, and tomorrow, November 30th is the Feast of St. Andrew the Apostle. Associated with the Feast is an old tradition known as the St. Andrew Christmas Novena. To do this, you say 15 times a day from St. Andrew’s Day until Christmas: “Hail and blessed be the hour and moment at which …

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St. Felix of Valois

Today is the feast day of St. Felix of Valois on the liturgical calendar for the Extraordinary Form of the Holy Mass. St. Felix was a hermit and a co-founder (with Saint John of Matha) of the Order of the Holy Trinity for the Redemption of Captives (a/k/a “The Trinitarians”). The Trinitarians were devoted to …

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Susan Tassone: Apostle of Purgatory

Susan Tassone is an author of several books on Purgatory, notably prayerbooks to the Holy Souls suffering the fires of purgation. One of my annual rituals is to use her book Thirty-Day Devotions for the Holy Souls in Purgatory every November, as that is the month dedicated to the dead. The book itself is very useful …

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Feast of All Saints

(NOTE: Reblogged from 2008 and expanded.) November 1st is the Feast of All Saints, which serves as the Feast day for everyone in Heaven, whether officially canonized or not. This is an important feast day as it reminds all of us of those who made it, who had run the race and fought the good …

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Did you know that the Catholic Church once had thirty-six Holy Days of Obligation?

A Holy Day of Obligation (HDO) is a day on the Catholic Church’s Liturgical Calendar when Catholics are obligated to go to Mass; their significance lies in honoring Our Lady, Our Lord, and major saints. All Sundays have been obligatory in addition to the HDOs (except when lifted by the Bishop in certain times) but …

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Plenary Indulgence for Cemetery Visits in November Extended

Every year in late October or very early November I publish a post regarding a plenary indulgence granted to the faithful who: “A plenary indulgence, applicable only to the souls in purgatory, is granted to the faithful who, -on any and each day from November 1 to 8, devoutly visit a cemetery and pray, if only mentally, …

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