Saturday, December 30, 2006

Our Lady of Evesham, Worcestershire

Among the many places of devotion in England there is Our Lady of Evesham, Worcestershire, which, according to tradition, is an authentic place of apparition of Our Lady. Sometime in the early eighth century, Our Lady allegedly appeared to a swineherd named Eoves and entrusted him with the task of going to the Bishop of Worcestershire to ask him to build a shrine in the forest where she had appeared. There is no data about the building of this church, but it is said that Lady Godiva rebuilt the church in 960. The shrine was a favorite place of pilgrimage until the Reformation; and now, four hundred years later, after World War II, a new shrine has been erected by the Catholic Church in Evesham.

Monday, November 20, 2006

O God of earth and altar, bow down and hear our cry

O God of earth and altar,
Bow down and hear our cry,
Our earthly rules falter,
Our people drift and die
The walls of gold entomb us,
The swords of scorn divide,
Take not Thy thunder from us
But take away our pride.

From all that terror teaches,
From lies of tongue and pen,
From all the easy speeches
That comfort cruel men,
From sale and profanation
Of honour and the sword,
From sleep and from damnation,
Deliver us, good Lord!

Tie in a living tether
The prince and priest and thrall
Bind all our lives together,
Smite us and save us all!
In ire and exultation
A flame with faith, and free
Lift up a living nation
A single sword to Thee.

Gilbert Keith Chesterton, "Hymn", 1926

See also "End of the Trail"

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Margaret Sinclair - Sister Mary Francis of the Five Wounds

Poor Claire Colletine (Extern) - 1900 - 1925

"If I could only gain one soul for Jesus it would be worth it all."


O Lord Jesus Christ, who didst endow Thy lowly and ever cheerful Virgin Margaret Sinclair, with a share in Thy sufferings and in Thy zeal for the salvation of men, grant, that, through her glorification we too may arrive at a share in Thy glory Who livest and reignest, God, world without end. Amen.


Three Hail Marys and the invocation: Margaret Sinclair, pray for us.

Cum licentia ordinarii: + D. Mackintosh, Archiep. Glasguen. 25 Oct. 1926.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Prayers to Our Lady of Walsingham

O Blessed Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Walsingham, to thy loving intercession we commend ourselves, our homes, our friends and our native land. We recall with thankful hearts the love thou didst show to thy Son on Earth, and the blessings given us through thy prayers. As thy devoted children, we dedicate our lives to His service. Our Lady of Walsingham, pray for us that we may do whatever His will is for us. Amen

Ancient Walsingham Prayer

O alone of all women, Mother and Virgin, Mother most happy, Virgin most pure, now we sinful as we are, come to see thee who are all pure, we salute thee, we honour thee as how we may with our humble offerings; may thy Son grant us, that imitating thy most holy manners, we also, by the grace of the Holy Ghost may deserve spiritually to conceive the Lord Jesus in our inmost soul, and once conceived never to lose him. Amen.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Lead kindly Light, lead Thou me on

Lead kindly Light - amid the encircling gloom
Lead Thou me on!
The night is dark, and I am far from home -
Lead Thou me on!
Keep Thou my feet, I do not ask to see
The distant scene, - one step enough for me.
I was not ever thus, nor prayed that Thou shouldst lead me on.
I loved to choose and see my path; but now lead Thou me on!
I loved the garish day, and spite of fears,
Pride ruled my will; remember not past years.
So long Thy power hath blest me, sure it still will lead me on
O'er moor und fen, o'er crag and torrent, till the night is gone
And with the morn those angel faces smile
Which I have loved long since, and lost awhile."

(John Henry Newman, June 16th, 1833, in the Straits of Bonifacio.)

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

That Host upraised against the Sky

"One word whispered, strange, across the night,
Deeper than any wireless message thrilled
The soundless voice of Aquin, one deep chord
Sustaining that light song with undertones
Profound as death, in the innermost heart of the world:
Visus, tactus, gustus, in te fallitur.
Sed auditu solo tuto creditur."

"Time and Space
Dissolved... Two thousand years ago, this Act,
Two Thousand Years ago, this Act,
On earth (and in the heavens, before all worlds);
Foreshadowed His own passion to create,
Life that might share His own on high at last,
And, by His own transfiguring entrance here,
Ennoble the dark Nature He had made,
Stooping to Man, that men might raise to God.
There, as that Host, upraised against the sky,
Bowed every head, I saw ten thousend shrines,
Ten thousand altars, in the self-same Act
Made one, and shadowing forth that Act in heaven
Before which all those heavenly armies kneel...
All these and more made one by that one sign,
One thin white disk upraised against the sky,
There, in one strict concentring point at last,
Closed all the thoughts and aims of earth and heaven,
Shone the one signal that could never change,
The ultimate sea-mark of our voyaging souls.
Behind that Act, two thousand years ago
On earth, and in the heavens before all worlds,
Stood, and for ever stands, the eternal Christ,
Whose Presence is not separate from His Act,
Because in Him, Substance and Will are one,
Breaking that Bread whereof His Body was made,
In union and communion with man's own;
A sacramental sign, earth's common Bread,
Bread of a thousand grains, compact in one,
To feed that flesh wherewith the soul of Christ,
Was clothed on earth, as man's own soul is clothed;
And, as the living soul of man on earth
Is here and now incorporate into Christ,
Becomes His Body anew.
Time, Space dissolved."

Alfred Noyes

To Mother Mary whom with many names we name

She will not weary of your harmonies,
The Gentle Mother: for her memories
Are full of ancient melodies,
Raised in the fashion of old Israel,
Beside the cold rock well:
Under the glow of calm and splendid skies;
Jesus upon her breast,
Fronting the shadowy land, the solemn west.
Ah, Mother! whom with many names we name,
By lore of love, which is our earthly tongue,
Is all too poor, though rich love's heart of flame,
To sing thee as thou art, nor leave unsung
The greatest of the graces thou hast won,
Thy chiefest excellence!
Ivory Tower! Star of the Morning! Rose
Mystical! Tower of David, our Defence!
To thee our music flows,
Who makest music for us to thy Son."

Lionel Johnson (1867-1902)