Oratory of St. Philip Neri established in Tilburg

The London Oratory, one of the best-known oratories

 

 A very positive development in the diocese of ‘s Hertogenbosch for vocations and the priesthood in general. In Tilburg, newly installed priest and dean, Fr Jeroen Miltenburg, and his chaplain, Fr. Karel Loodts. are working to establish a so-called Oratory of St. Philip Neri.    

Established in the 16th century, by St. Philip Neri, a priest in Rome, an oratory is a house where priests live, work and pray together. In St. Philip’s time it was a great boost to vocations and the education of priests, who not only lived together, but also organised regular discussion meetings about all manner of topics, but always with the goal of furthering theological and pastoral awareness.    

Fr. Miltenburg: “Of course there are practical advantages when it comes to dividing tasks, but the fundamental idea is praying, offering Mass and doing pastoral work together.”    

And about St. Philip Neri he says: “Typical for Neri was his passionate and loving discussion of Jesus Christ. Through his attention on prayer, conversation, song, music and pilgrimage the first oratory developed against the spirit of the Reformation.”    

On 17 June of last year, Bishop Hurkmans  allowed the establishment of an ‘Oratory of St. Philip Neri in Development’ in Tilburg. Since an oratory needs a core of three priests it is open for growth.    

Source

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A surprise to no one

Today at noon, Cardinal Danneels officially announced that Msgr. André-Mutien Léonard will succeed him as archbishop of Mechlin-Brussels. Clearly that was widely expected or feared, depending on who you talk to.

Whatever the position you take on Msgr. Léonard, a program broadcast last night on Belgian TV, which followed him in his daily affairs, engendered much sympathy for the man. It was proof that he is a pastoral caring priest, as well as a philosophical and intelligent bishop.

During the announcement Cardinal danneels referred to the fact that he won’t be succeeded by a carbon copy. “We don’t have the same temperament, but we share the same faith. The menu is served by a different waiter, but the menu stays the same.”

In the five years he has in his new archdiocese, Msgr. Léonard will focus on the liturgy, vocations and the social program implemented by his predecessor. He’ll be visiting the three vicariates that make up the archdiocese and may also request a third auxiliary bishop. Two of vicariates are led by auxiliaries, but Flemish Brabant and Mechlin is not, since its auxiliary, Msgr. Jan De Bie, retired a year ago.

All in all terrific news for Belgium, although the new archbishop will undoubtedly face some determined opposition in the coming years.

Looking back at the papal visit to the Rome synagogue

As expected, the name of Pope Pius XII fell during the pope’s visit to the synagogue in Rome.  The pope mentioned the Holocaust in his address and referred to the “hidden and discreet” ways in which the Holy See aided the Jewish community of Rome and elsewhere. The complete text of the speech is available here, and a Dutch translation is available under the ‘Translations’ tab above or directly here.

As for the polemic around Pope Pius XII, I won’t go into details here. Father Z is one blogger who shines an interesting light on media coverage now and during Pius XII’s papacy.

[Photo credit: RKK/Lidy Peters]

Why Belgium needs Msgr. Léonard

Belgian Priest Fr. Pieter Delanoy shows why Bishop Léonard is the best choice for the archdiocese of Mechlin-Brussels, although he does not intend to do so.

In VRT News he explains why he started a Facebook group against the rumoured appointment and what he thinks the problem is. His comments are in Dutch, but here are some snippets translated into English.

Fr. Delanoy: “There were a lot of people, a lot of young people, who immediately reacted, “How can I now tell friends I believe, that I go to Church. How is it possible that when we know that things work in different ways, modern ways, that someone with such a profile apparently becomes archbishop.””

Presenter: “He really only says what the pope is saying, no more, no less.”

Fr. Delanoy: “Yes, but we think those should be implemented pastorally. That is totally different than saying, “These are the position of Rome, so we stop talking to a lot of people. So, people who are divorced, people who…”

Presenter: “Homosexuals.”

Fr. Delanoy:  “Homosexuals. Women. We stop talking to them, because they are shoved aside.”

I don’t know where Fr. Delanoy had his education, but it sounds like it was seriously lacking. Where does he get the idea that Catholics can’t talk to women, divorced people, homosexuals? Disapproving of a practice is not at all the same as disapproving of people. That’s basic knowledge.

It’s interesting to see that he does not disagree with what the pope says, but refuses to implement those statements. Equally interesting, in a sad way, is that Fr. Delanoy seems to think that dogmatic teachings are nothing more than opinions or standpoints. This is a priest of the Catholic Church who is ignorant of the position he has in the Church and even what that Church is.

And in all this, I haven’t even mentioned the blatant disrespect he shows to his superior and spiritual father. Or his lack of a Roman collar.

That is why Belgium needs Msgr. Léonard: for well-educated priests who know the faith and are not afraid to defend it.

Mass and snow

My day today consisted of two things repeated: Mass and snow. I served Mass this morning (a family Mass, which is never my favourite since liturgy is curtailed in favour of a focus on children*), trudging to snow, trudging some more through snow, get out of the snow to blog a bit, trudge some more through snow, another Mass (the first student Mass of the new year), and finally, I expect, some more trudging through snow.

I am quite done with this winter, actually.

Here’s a photo of Father Jozef Okonek in the distance, singing the Pater Noster at the Latin Mass.

*I have nothing against children, obviously, and I welcome attempts to get them involved with the Mass. I just don’t think the second reading should be skipped for it, and the less people in the sacntuary, the better. Weighing the pros and cons, I fail to see the merit of these family Masses.

In the name of the Church

The Catholic World Report features an interesting interview with Francis Cardinal Arinze, prefect emeritus of the Congregation for Divine Worship and considered by many to be papabile, a likely cardinal to become pope. In this interview, the cardinal speaks about the new liturgical translations in English, and other topics related to the ‘reform of the reform’.

Since work has begun on a new translation of the Dutch missal as well, I think this is relevant to the Church in the Netherlands and Flanders as well. That is why I provide a translation. Getting that translation on the blog cost me far more time than it should have, because the problems between Word and WordPress are seemingly insurmountable. It basically comes down to lots of invisible coding messing up the layout. But I managed to produce a text with proper layout by copying and pasting paragraphs one by one.

I like WordPress, but finding an answer to a problem is very difficult.