Sunday, September 23, 2012

Memorial of Our Lady of Walsingham

Tomorrow, September 24, is the Memorial of Our Lady of Walsingham, the title of our blessed Mother to which I have great devotion.

About our Lady from the U.S. Anglican Catholic Ordinariate:

The appearance of Our Lady of Walsingham is one of the earliest Marian apparitions in history. Richeldis de Faverches, a noble widow living in Norfolk during the reign of Edward the Confessor, petitioned the Blessed Virgin to inspire her to a notable work of charity. In answer, Our Lady gave her a vision, taking Richeldis to the house in Nazareth where the Annunciation occurred. She instructed her to build a replica in Walsingham to commemorate Mary's joy at the Angelic Salutation of Gabriel, the heralding of the Incarnation.

The Holy House became a shrine, a place of pilgrimage and miracles. Ballads were penned in praise of Our Lady of Walsingham, and many kings made pilgrimage there. This included Henry VIII, but after his break with the Church he ordered the shrine destroyed. This event too became the subject of ballads, now of lament. The place lay silent until the 1890s, when the ruins of the wayside Slipper Chapel were restored for Catholic use. Then in the 1930s, the Anglican Church built a new shrine and Catholic Slipper Chapel was declared the English National Shrine of Our Lady.

When the Word was made Flesh, the universality of God came into the particularity of a little house in the village of Nazareth. The Incarnation means that God meets us not in an abstracted existence, but directly, within the particular places and circumstances of our lives. As Our Lady guided Richeldis to make a Nazareth in England, every chapel and shrine to Our Lady of Walsingham is a particular, local Nazareth, an encounter with the joy of the Incarnation in that special place. 

When I was in Walsingham this past may, I vowed to our Lady that I would advance devotion to her as best I could. To that end, I invite all people of good will to pray the following Order for Veneration of Our Lady of Walsingham, which I composed on the occasion of my first celebration of the Memorial since my return from England's Nazareth.



UR help is in the Name of the Lord.
     — Who made heaven and earth.

Lord, have mercy.
— Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Our Father (and the rest inaudibly, until:)

And lead us not into temptation:
— But deliver us from evil.

Let us pray.

RANT, we pray, almighty God, that as in the mystery of the Incarnation the Blessed and ever Virgin Mary conceived your Son in her heart before she conceived Him in the womb, so we, your pilgrim people,  rejoicing in her motherly care, may welcome him into our hearts and become a holy house fit for his eternal dwelling: who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit: one God, forever and ever (Collect for the Memorial of Our Lady of Walsingham, Roman Missal).  R. Amen.


Mary: R. Pray to the Lord for us.
Mary, without sin, R.
Mary, God's Mother, R.
Mary the Virgin, R.
Mary taken to Heaven, R.
Mary at Bethlehem, R. Pray for all mothers.
Mary at Nazareth, R. Pray for all families.
Mary at Cana, R. Pray for all married couples.
Mary at the cross, R. Pray for all who suffer.
Mary in the Upper Room, R. Pray for all who wait.
Mary model of Womanhood, R. Pray for all women.
Woman of Faith, R. Remember us.
Woman of Hope, R.
Woman of Charity, R.
Woman of suffering, R.
Woman of anxiety, R.
Woman of humility, R.
Woman of poverty, R.
Woman of purity, R.
Woman of obedience, R.
Woman who wondered, R. Remember us to God.
Woman who listened, R.
Woman who followed Him, R.
Woman who longed for Him, R.
Woman who loves Him, R.
Mother of God, R. Be our Mother always.
Mother of Men, R.
Mother of the Church, R.
Mother of the World, R.
Mother we need, R.
Mother of the Unborn, R. Pray for all children.
Mother who went on believing, R. We thank God for you.
Mother who never lost hope, R.
Mother who loved to the end, R.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God:
— That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.

AY the venerable intercession of Blessed Mary ever-Virgin come to our aid, we pray, O Lord, and free us from every danger, so that we may rejoice in  your peace. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit: one God, forever and ever. R. Amen.


 BLESSED Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Walsingham, Mother of God and our most gentle Queen and Mother: look down in mercy upon us, our parish, our country, our homes, and our families, and upon all who greatly hope and trust in your prayers, (especially …).  By you it was that Jesus, our Savior and hope, was given to the world; and he has given you to us that we may hope still more. Plead for us your children, whom you did receive and accept at the foot of the Cross, O sorrowful Mother.  Intercede for our separated brethren, that with us in the one true fold they may be united to the Chief Shepherd, the Vicar of your Son.  Pray for us all, dear Mother, that by faith, fruitful in good works, we all may be made worthy to see and praise God, together with you in our heavenly home. R. Amen.

Our Lady of Walsingham:
— Pray for us.


If the minister is a priest or deacon, then:

The Lord be with you.
— And with your spirit.

Solemn Blessing for the Celebration of the Saints:
The Blessed Virgin Mary

May God, who through the childbearing of the Blessed Virgin Mary willed in his great kindness to redeem the human race, be pleased to enrich you with his blessing.  R. Amen.

May you know always and everywhere the protection of her, through whom you have been found worthy to receive the author of life.  R. Amen.

May you, who have devoutly gathered on this day, carry away with you the gifts of spiritual joys and heavenly rewards.  R. Amen.

And may the blessing of almighty God, the Father, and the Son, + and the Holy Spirit, come down upon you and remain with you forever.  R. Amen.

Go in peace.
— Thanks be to God.

If the minister is a layman, then, making
the Sign of the Cross upon himself, he says:

May the Lord bless us, + protect us from all evil, and bring us to everlasting life.  R. Amen.

Introductory Rite from the Rituale Romanum; Collect from the Roman Missal: 24 September; Litany & Petitionary Prayer from the National Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, Houghton St. Giles, Norfolk, UK; Solemn Blessing from the Roman Missal: Solemn Blessings After Mass.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Diocese & seven other Catholic orgs in Tennessee sue US government over HHS mandate

Citing the government's requirement that they provide "morally objectionable services," the Diocese of Nashville, along with seven other Catholic organizations in Middle Tennessee, today filed suit in federal court.

The Most Rev. David R. Choby, Bishop of Nashville (right),
speaks with diocesan chief financial officer Bill Whalen
(left), in the Catholic Center in Nashville.

In addition to the diocese, Catholic Charities, both Catholic high schools, three different elder-care facilities, and Aquinas College all filed suit.  All but the college are diocesan entities, though indpendently incorporated; Aquinas is run by the Nashville-based Dominican Sisters of Saint Cecilia.

Please pray for Bishop Choby, our diocesan legal team, and the Nashville Dominicans as they pursue justice in the civil courts.

Full press release from the diocese.