Monday, July 26, 2010

Saint Joachim and Saint Anne

Today is the memorial of the parents of our Lady, Saints Joachim and Anne. As the breviary note about them says:

An old tradition going back to the second century gives these names to the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The veneration of Saint Anne dates from the sixth century in the East and spread throughout the West in the tenth century; that of Saint Joachim is more recent.
Tradition has it that Saints Joachim and Anne were childless until Saint Joachim went into the desert for fasting and penance for forty days. Angels then appeared to both saints promising them a child. Joachim returned to Jerusalem meeting Anne at the city gate.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Just because

Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Seraphic Doctor and St Swithun

Today is the memorial of the great Franciscan, Bishop and Doctor of the Church, St Bonaventure. From Universalis we see:

He was born at Bagnoregio in Etruria in about 1218. He became a Franciscan in 1243 and studied philosophy and theology at the University of Paris. He became a famous teacher and philosopher, part of the extraordinary intellectual flowering of the 13th century. He was a friend and colleague of St Thomas Aquinas.
  At this time the friars were still a new and revolutionary force in the Church, and their radical embracing of poverty and rejection of institutional structures raised suspicion and opposition from many quarters. Bonaventure defended the Franciscan Order and, after he was elected general of the order in 1255, he ruled it with wisdom and prudence. He is regarded as the second founder of the Order.
  He declined the archbishopric of York in 1265 but was made cardinal bishop of Albano in 1273, dying a year later in 1274 at the Council of Lyons, at which the Greek and Latin churches were (briefly) reconciled.
  Bonaventure wrote extensively on philosophy and theology, making a permanent mark on intellectual history; but he always insisted that the simple and uneducated could have a clearer knowledge of God than the wise.
  He was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1588 by Pope Sixtus V.

In our diocese it is also the memorial of St Swithun, the Anglo-Saxon Bishop of Winchester who died in 862. Probably the most well known thing about St Swithun is the folk lore that says whatever the weather may be on St Swithun's Day is the what the weather will be for the next forty days.
St Swithun's day if thou dost rain
For forty days it will remain
St Swithun's day if thou be fair
For forty days 'twill rain no more
As it's pretty grim today, I think I'll take the view it's all an old wifes tale!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Vuvuzelas - annoying people for thousands of years

Monday, July 12, 2010

The Sash My Father Wore

Something completely different in celebration of "the Glorious 12th"


Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Devil would take a terrible beating in there


Update: Well so much for that then. Oh well

In 1982:

  •  Germany won the Eurovision Song Contest
  • German football side Bayern Munich lost in the final of the European Cup / Champions League
  • The (West) German side won the World Cup
In 2010:
  • Germany won the Eurovision Song Contest
  • Bayern Munich lost in the final of the European Cup / Champions League
  •  Three out of three?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

St Maria Goretti

St Maria Goretti was a 12 year old Virgin and Martyr. Today is her memorial.

The breviary note about her says, simply:
Born at Ancona in Italy of a poor family in the year 1890. She spent her childhood near Nettuno in poverty, helping her mother in the domestic chores. She was a religious girl and much given to prayer. In the year 1902, while defending her chastity against a man attempting to violate her, she preferred to die rather than give way, and was repeatedly stabbed with a knife.
She was canonised by Pope Pius XII in 1950.

More on Wikipedia here.