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Cardinal Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, celebrates Traditional Latin Mass for nearly 20,000 people in the most famous cathedral in Europe.

Chartes Vid graphic

Tired of apologizing for being Catholic? Sick of every other religion in the world being praised while yours is condemned?

Weary of hearing about the rights of man, with no thought given to the rights of God and His Church?

Done with CINOs (Catholics In Name Only)? Here's the answer. On Pentecost weekend in France, nearly 20,000 Catholics from all over the world--of every race and color, men and women, old and young--came together to worship God, to honor Our Lady and to send a message to the world: the anti-Catholic revolution has failed!

Chartres dark to lightPhotos: Walter Matt

“This has been standing here for centuries. The premier work of man perhaps in the whole Western world, and it’s without a signature: Chartres. A celebration to God’s glory and to the dignity of man. All that’s left, most artists seem to feel these days, is man. Naked, poor, forked radish. There aren’t any celebrations. Ours, the scientists keep telling us, is a universe which is disposable. You know, it might be just this one anonymous glory of all things, this rich stone forest, this epic chant, this gaiety, this grand, choiring shout of affirmation, which we choose when all our cities are dust, to stand intact, to mark where we have been, to testify to what we had it in us to accomplish.” - Orson Welles

For more than a thousand years Our Lady’s cathedral at Chartres has stood in grand gothic testimony to the faith of our fathers and the Christian cult of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Before Chartres, Christian churches were typically dedicated to the saints whose relics they were built to house. Chartres is different, for it is one of the first dedicated solely to the Mother of God. She so stirred the medieval soul that nearly all cathedrals that came after Chartres were dedicated to Our Lady—Notre Dame—the Virgin Mother of God.

nuns 2

Today I’ve received an interesting document issued by the Carmelite Order in Europe following a meeting of the “Federations of Discalced Carmelite Nuns of Europe & the Holy Land” in Avila, February 2009. As a snapshot of the current condition of Carmelite monastic life after it had been completely “federated,” it paints a depressing picture; but as a demonstration of what “federations” are likely to achieve once Cor orans is implemented universally, it clangs in the mind like a funeral bell.

The meeting covered Carmels of the Teresian, Discalced, reform from Germany, five areas of Spain, three from France, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Croatia and the Holy Land[1]. The reports from each region showed that many of the provisions found in Cor orans were already in place: federations with broad powers, including financial control and combined formation courses, “religious assistant” priests appointed by the federation and overseeing individual monasteries and superiors giving up their authority to the federations. Given that this was 2009, it is clear that the plans to force all contemplative monasteries in the world into this disastrous European mould were well under way long before Pope Benedict was even considering resigning.

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