Thursday, February 7, 2013

Thursday, February 7, 2013 - Litany Lane Blog: Sacred, Hebrews 12:18-24, 11-15, Psalms 48:2-11, Mark 6:7-13, Blessed Pius IX, Senigallia Italy, Apostolic Palace, Catholic Catechism Part One Section 2 The Creeds Chapter 1:1:6 Man

Thursday, February 7, 2013 - Litany Lane Blog:

Sacred, Hebrews 12:18-24, 11-15, Psalms 48:2-11, Mark 6:7-13, Blessed Pius IX, Senigallia Italy, Apostolic Palace, Catholic Catechism Part One Section 2 The Creeds Chapter 1:1:6 Man

Good Day Bloggers!  Happy Mardi Gras!
Wishing everyone a Blessed Week!

Year of Faith - October 11, 2012 - November 24, 2013

P.U.S.H. (Pray Until Serenity Happens). It has a remarkable way of producing solace, peace, patience and tranquility and of course resolution...God's always available 24/7.

The world begins and ends everyday for someone.  We are all human. We all experience birth, life and death. We all have flaws but we also all have the gift of knowledge and free will, make the most of these gifts. Life on earth is a stepping stone to our eternal home in Heaven. Its your choice whether to rise towards eternal light or lost to eternal darkness. Material items, though needed for sustenance and survival on earth are of earthly value only. The only thing that passes from this earth to Purgatory and/or Heaven is our Soul, our's God's perpetual gift to us...Embrace it, treasure it, nurture it, protect it...

"Raise not a hand to another unless it is to offer in peace and goodwill." ~ Zarya Parx 2012


February 2, 2013 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:
"Dear children, love is bringing me to you - the love which I desire to teach you also - real love; the love which my Son showed you when He died on the Cross out of love for you; the love which is always ready to forgive and to ask for forgiveness. How great is your love? My motherly heart is sorrowful as it searches for love in your hearts. You are not ready to submit your will to God's will out of love. You cannot help me to have those who have not come to know God's love to come to know it, because you do not have real love. Consecrate your hearts to me and I will lead you. I will teach you to forgive, to love your enemies and to live according to my Son. Do not be afraid for yourselves. In afflictions my Son does not forget those who love. I will be beside you. I will implore the Heavenly Father for the light of eternal truth and love to illuminate you. Pray for your shepherds so that through your fasting and prayer they can lead you in love. Thank you."

January 25, 2013 Message From Our Lady of Medjugorje to World:
"Dear children! Also today I call you to prayer. May your prayer be as strong as a living stone, until with your lives you become witnesses. Witness the beauty of your faith. I am with you and intercede before my Son for each of you. Thank you for having responded to my call."


Today's Word:  sacred   sa·cred  [sey-krid]

Origin: 1275–1325; Middle English,  orig. past participle of sacren  to consecrate < Latin sacrāre  to devote, derivative of sacer  holy; see -ed2
1. devoted or dedicated to a deity or to some religious purpose; consecrated.
2. entitled to veneration or religious respect by association with divinity or divine things; holy.
3. pertaining to or connected with religion ( opposed to secular or profane ): sacred music; sacred books.
4. reverently dedicated to some person, purpose, or object: a morning hour sacred to study.
5. regarded with reverence: the sacred memory of a dead hero
6. secured against violation, infringement, etc., as by reverence or sense of right: sacred oaths; sacred rights.
7. properly immune from violence, interference, etc., as a person or office.


Today's Old Testament Reading -  Psalms 48:2-11

2 towering in beauty, the joy of the whole world: Mount Zion in the heart of the north, the settlement of the great king;
3 God himself among its palaces has proved himself its bulwark.
4 For look, kings made alliance, together they advanced;
9 We reflect on your faithful love, God, in your temple!
10 Both your name and your praise, God, are over the whole wide world. Your right hand is full of saving justice,
11 Mount Zion rejoices, the daughters of Judah delight because of your saving justice.


Today's Epistle - Hebrews 12:18-24

18 What you have come to is nothing known to the senses: not a blazing fire, or gloom or total darkness, or a storm;
19 or trumpet-blast or the sound of a voice speaking which made everyone that heard it beg that no more should be said to them.
21 The whole scene was so terrible that Moses said, 'I am afraid and trembling.'
22 But what you have come to is Mount Zion and the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem where the millions of angels have gathered for the festival,
23 with the whole Church of first-born sons, enrolled as citizens of heaven. You have come to God himself, the supreme Judge, and to the spirits of the upright who have been made perfect;
24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to purifying blood which pleads more insistently than Abel's.


Today's Gospel Reading  Mark 6:7-13

Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out in pairs, giving them authority over unclean spirits. And he instructed them to take nothing for the journey except a staff -- no bread, no haversack, no coppers for their purses. They were to wear sandals but, he added, 'Don't take a spare tunic.' And he said to them, 'If you enter a house anywhere, stay there until you leave the district. And if any place does not welcome you and people refuse to listen to you, as you walk away shake off the dust under your feet as evidence to them.' So they set off to proclaim repentance; and they cast out many devils, and anointed many sick people with oil and cured them.

• Today’s Gospel continues what we have already seen in the Gospel yesterday. The passage through Nazareth was painful for Jesus. He was rejected by his own people (Mk 6, 1-5). The community which before had been his community, now, it is no longer such. Something has changed. Beginning at that moment, as today’s Gospel says, Jesus began to go round the villages of Galilee to announce the Good News (Mk 6, 6) and to send the Twelve on mission. In the years 70’s, the time when Mark wrote his Gospel, the Christian communities lived in a difficult situation, without any horizon. Humanly speaking, here was no future for them. In the year 64, Nero began to persecute the Christians. In the year 65, the revolt or uprising of the Jews in Palestine against Rome broke out. In the year 70, Jerusalem was completely destroyed by the Romans. This is why the description of the sending out of the disciples, after the conflict in Nazareth, was a source of light and of courage for the Christians.

• Mark 6, 7. The objective of the Mission. The conflict grew and closely affected Jesus. How does he react? In two ways: 1) Before the mental obstinacy of the people of his community, Jesus leaves Nazareth and began to go round the neighbouring villages (Mk 6, 6). 2) He extends the mission and intensifies the announcement of the Good News calling other persons to involve them in the mission. “He summoned the Twelve, and began to send them out in pairs, giving them authority over unclean spirits”. The objective of the mission is simple and profound. The disciples participate in the mission of Jesus. They cannot go alone, they have to go in pairs, two by two, because two persons represent the community better than one alone and they can mutually help one another. They receive authority over unclean spirits, that is, they have to be a help for others in suffering and, through purification, and they have to open the door for direct access to God.

• Mark 6, 8-11. The attitudes which they should have in the Mission. The recommendations are simple: “And he instructed them to take nothing for the journey except a staff; no bread, no haversack, no coppers for their purses; they were to wear sandals and not to take a spare tunic. And he told them: If you enter a house anywhere, stay there until you leave the district. And if any place does not welcome you and people refuse to listen to you, as you walk away, shake off the dust under your feet, as evidence to them”. So they set off. It is the beginning of a new stage. Now, not only Jesus, but the whole group will announce the Good News of God to the people. If the preaching of Jesus caused conflict, much more now, there will be conflict with the preaching of the whole group. If the mystery was already great, now it will be greater since the mission has been intensified.

• Mark 6, 12-13. The result of the mission. “So they set off to proclaim repentance, and they cast out many devils, and anointed many sick people with oil and cured them.” To announce the Good News, produces conversion or a change in persons, it alleviates persons in their suffering; it cures illnesses and casts out devils.

• The sending out of the disciples on Mission. At the time of Jesus there were several other movements of renewal. For example, the Essens and the Pharisees. They also sought a new way of living in community and they had their own missionaries (cf. Mt 23, 15). But these, when they went on mission, they had prejudices. They took with them a haversack and money to take care of their own meals, because they did not trust the food that people would give them, which was not always ritually “pure”. On the contrary to other missionaries, the disciples of Jesus received diverse recommendations which helped to understand the fundamental points of the mission of announcing the Good News, which they received from Jesus and which is also our mission:

a) They should go without taking anything. They should take nothing, no haversack, no money, no staff, no bread, no sandals, not two tunics. That meant that Jesus obliged them to trust in hospitality. Because one who goes without taking anything, goes because he trusts people and thinks that he will be well received. With this attitude they criticized the laws of exclusion, taught by the official religion, and showed, by means of the new practice, that they in the community had other criteria.

b) They should eat what people ate or what the people gave them. They could not live separated providing their own food, but they should accept to sit at the same table (Lk 10, 8). This means that in contact with the people, they should not be afraid of losing the purity as it was taught at that time. With this attitude they criticized the laws of purity which were in force and showed, by means of the new practice, that they had another type of access to purity, that is, intimacy with God.

c) They should remain in the first house that welcomed them. They should live together in a stable way and not go from house to house. They should work like everybody else and live from what they received in exchange, “because the labourer deserves his wages” (Lk 10, 7). In other words, they should participate in the life and in the work of the people, and the people would have accepted them in the community and would have shared the food with them. This means that they had to have trust in sharing.

d) They should take care of the sick, cure the lepers and cast out devils (Lk 10, 9; Mc 6, 7.13; Mt 10, 8). They had to carry out the function of “Defender” (goêl) and accept within the clan, in the community, those who were excluded. With this attitude they criticized the situation of disintegration of the community life of the clan and they aimed at concrete ways of getting out. These were the four fundamental points which had to give impulse to the attitude of the missionaries who announced the Good News of God, in the name of Jesus: hospitality, communion, sharing and acceptance of the excluded (defender, goêl). If these four requirements were respected, they could and should cry out to the four ends of the world: “The Kingdom of God has come!” (cf. Lk 10, 1-12; 9, 1-6; Mk 6, 7-13; Mt 10, 6-16). Because the Kingdom of God revealed by Jesus is not a doctrine, nor a catechism, nor a law. The Kingdom of God comes and becomes present when persons, motivated by their faith in Jesus, decide to live in community to give witness and to manifest to all that God is Father and Mother and that, therefore, we human beings are brothers and sisters among us. Jesus wanted that the local community would again be an expression of the Covenant, of the Kingdom, of the love of God the Father, who makes all of us brothers and sisters. 

Personal questions
• Do you participate in the mission as a disciple of Jesus?
• Which point of the mission of the apostles is more important for us today? Why? 

Reference: Courtesy of Order of Carmelites,


Featured Item of the Day from Litany Lane


Saint of the Day:  Blessed Pope Pius IX

Feast DayFebruary 7

Patron Saintn/a

Pope Pius IX
Pope Pius IX (13 May 1792 – 7 February 1878), born Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, was the longest-reigning elected Pope in the history of the Catholic Church, serving from 16 June 1846 until his death, a period of nearly 32 years. During his pontificate, he convened the First Vatican Council in 1869, which decreed papal infallibility. The Pope defined the dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, meaning that Mary was conceived without original sin. Pius IX also granted the Marian title of Our Mother of Perpetual Help, a famous Byzantine icon from Crete entrusted to the Redemptorist priests. In addition to this, Pius IX was also the last Pope to rule as the Sovereign of the Papal States, which fell completely to Italian nationalist armies by 1870 and were incorporated into the Kingdom of Italy. After this, he voluntarily became the first "Prisoner of the Vatican". He was beatified in 2000.

Europe, including the Italian peninsula, was in the midst of considerable political ferment when the bishop of Spoleto, Giovanni Maria Cardinal Mastai-Ferretti, was elected pope. He took the name Pius, after his generous patron and the long-suffering prisoner of Napoleon Bonaparte, Pius VII. He had been elected by the faction of cardinals sympathetic to the political liberalization coursing across Europe, and his initial governance of the Papal States gives evidence of his own liberal sympathies: Under his direction various sorts of political prisoners in the Papal States were released and the city of Rome was granted a constitutional framework under guidance of his friend, philosopher-prince Antonio Rosmini-Serbati. A series of terrorist acts sponsored by Italian liberals and nationalists, which included the assassination of his Minister of the Interior, Pellegrino Rossi among others and which forced him briefly to flee Rome in 1848 led to his growing skepticism towards the liberal, nationalist agenda. Through the 1850s and 1860s, Italian nationalists made military gains against the Papal States, which culminated in the seizure of the city of Rome in 1870. Pius IX refused to accept the Law of Guarantees from the nationalists, which would have made the Vatican dependent on Italian financiers for years to come. His Church policies towards other countries, such as Russia, Germany and France, were not always successful, due in part, to changing secular institutions and internal developments within these countries. However, concordats were concluded with numerous states such as Austria-Hungary, Portugal, Spain, Canada, Tuscany, Ecuador, Venezuela, Honduras, El Salvador and Haiti.

Many contemporary Church historians and journalists question his approaches. His appeal for public worldwide support of the Holy See – Peter's Pence – after he became "The prisoner of the Vatican" is now the main source of income for the Holy See. The money, still collected each year, is today used by the Pope for support of the Roman Curia, the Vatican City State and philanthropic purposes. In his Syllabus of Errors, still highly controversial, Pius IX condemned the heresies of secular society, especially modernism.

He was a Marian Pope, who in his encyclical Ubi Primum described Mary as a Mediatrix of salvation. In 1854, he promulgated the dogma of the Immaculate Conception, articulating a long-held Catholic belief that Mary, the Mother of God, was conceived without original sin. In 1862, he convened 300 bishops to the Vatican for the canonization of Twenty-six Martyrs of Japan. His most important legacy is the First Vatican Council, which convened in 1869. This Council discussed many issues, especially the dogma of papal infallibility, which Pius was eager to have officially defined by the council; but the council was interrupted as Italian nationalist troops threatened Rome. The council is considered to have contributed to a centralization of the Roman Catholic Church in the Vatican.  Pius IX, who suffered from epilepsy, was beatified by Pope John Paul II on 3 September 2000. His Feast Day is 7 February.

Early life and ministry

An 1819 picture showing Mastai-Ferretti at his first Holy Mass
Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti was born in Senigallia into the noble family of Girolamo dei conti Ferretti, and was educated at the Piarist College in Volterra and in Rome. As a theology student in his hometown Sinigaglia, in 1814 he met Pope Pius VII, who had returned from French captivity. In 1815, he entered the Papal Noble Guard but was soon dismissed after an epileptic seizure. He threw himself at the feet of Pius VII who elevated him and supported his continued theological studies.

The Pope originally insisted that another priest should assist Mastai during Holy Mass, a stipulation that was later rescinded, after the seizure attacks became less frequent. Mastai was ordained priest in April 1819. He initially worked as the rector of the Tata Giovanni Institute in Rome. Shortly before his death, Pius VII sent him as Auditor to Chile and Peru in 1823 and 1825 to assist the Apostolic Nuncio, Monsignore Giovanni Muzi and Monsignore Bradley Kane, in the first mission to post-revolutionary South America. The mission had the objective to map out the role of the Catholic Church in the newly independent South American republics. He was thus the first pope ever to have been in America. When he returned to Rome, the successor of Pius VII, Pope Leo XII appointed him head of the hospital of San Michele in Rome (1825–1827) and canon of Santa Maria in Via Lata.

Pope Leo XII appointed Father Mastai-Ferretti Archbishop of Spoleto, his own hometown, in 1827 at the age of 35. In 1831, the abortive revolution that had begun in Parma and Modena spread to Spoleto; the Archbishop obtained a general pardon after it was suppressed, gaining him a reputation for being liberal. During an earthquake, he made a reputation as an efficient organizer of relief and great charity. The following year he was moved to the more prestigious diocese of Imola, was made a cardinal in pectore in 1839, and in 1840 was publicly announced as Cardinal-Priest of Santi Marcellino e Pietro. As in Spoleto, his episcopal priorities were the formation of priests through improved education and charities. He became known for visiting prisoners in jail, and for programs for street children. According to historians, Cardinal Mastai-Ferretti was considered a liberal during his episcopate in Spoleto and Imola because he supported administrative changes in the Papal States and sympathized with the nationalist movement in Italy. Some have suggested that while he was a bishop Mastai-Ferretti joined a group called Freemasonry.

Papal election

A 1846 picture of Pope Pius IX soon after his election to the papacy.
The conclave of 1846, following the death of Pope Gregory XVI (1831–46), took place in an unsettled political climate within Italy. Because of this, many foreign Cardinals decided not to attend the conclave. At its start, only 46 out of 62 cardinals were present.

Moreover, the conclave of 1846 was steeped in a factional division between conservatives and liberals. The conservatives supported Luigi Lambruschini, Gregory XVI's Cardinal Secretary of State. Liberals supported two candidates: Pasquale Tommaso Gizzi and the then 54-year-old Mastai-Ferretti. During the first ballot, Mastai-Ferretti received 15 votes, the rest going to Cardinal Lambruschini and Cardinal Gizzi.

Faced with deadlock, liberals and moderates decided to cast their votes for Mastai-Ferretti in a move that contradicted the general mood throughout Europe. By the second day of the conclave, on 16 June 1846, during an evening ballot, Mastai-Ferretti was elected Pope. "He was a glamorous candidate, ardent, emotional with a gift for friendship and a track-record of generosity even towards anti-Clericals and Carbonari. He was a patriot, known to be critical of Gregory XVI " Because it was night, no formal announcement was given, just the signal of white smoke. Many Catholics had assumed that Gizzi had been elected successor of St. Peter. In fact, celebrations began to take place in his hometown, and his personal staff, following a long-standing tradition, burned his cardinalitial vestments.

On the following morning, the senior Cardinal-Deacon, Tommaso Riario Sforza, announced the election of Mastai-Ferretti before a crowd of faithful Catholics. When Mastai-Ferretti appeared on the balcony, the mood became joyous. Mastai-Ferretti chose the name Pius IX in honor of Pope Pius VII (1800–23), who had encouraged his vocation to the priesthood despite his childhood epilepsy.

However, Mastai-Ferretti, now Pope Pius IX, had little diplomatic and no curial experience, which did cause some controversy. The government of the Empire of Austria as represented by Prince Metternich in its foreign affairs objected to even the possible election of Mastai-Ferretti. Thus, Cardinal Gaisruck, Archbishop of Milan, was sent to present the Austrian official veto against Mastai-Ferretti. However, Gaisruck arrived too late; the new Pope was already elected. Pius IX was crowned on 21 June 1846.

Plans to leave Rome

The Lateran Basilica
Several times during his pontificate, Pius IX considered leaving Rome. One occurrence was in 1862, when Giuseppe Garibaldi was in Sicily gathering volunteers for a campaign to take Rome under the slogan Roma o Morte (Rome or Death). On 26 July 1862, before Garibaldi and his volunteers were stopped at Aspromonte:
Pius IX confided his fears to Lord Odo Russell, the British Minister in Rome, and asked whether he would be granted political asylum in England after the Italian troops had marched in. Odo Russell assured him that he would be granted asylum if the need arose, but said that he was sure that the Pope's fears were unfounded.
Two other instances occurred after the Capture of Rome and the suspension of the First Vatican Council. Otto von Bismarck confided these to Moritz Busch:
As a matter of fact, he [Pius IX] has already asked whether we could grant him asylum. I have no objection to it—Cologne or Fulda. It would be passing strange, but after all not so inexplicable, and it would be very useful to us to be recognised by Catholics as what we really are, that is to say, the sole power now existing that is capable of protecting the head of their Church. [...] But the King [William I] will not consent. He is terribly afraid. He thinks all Prussia would be perverted and he himself would be obliged to become a Catholic. I told him, however, that if the Pope begged for asylum he could not refuse it. He would have to grant it as ruler of ten million Catholic subjects who would desire to see the head of their Church protected.
Rumours have already been circulated on various occasions to the effect that the Pope intends to leave Rome. According to the latest of these the Council, which was adjourned in the summer, will be reopened at another place, some persons mentioning Malta and others Trient. [... ] Doubtless the main object of this gathering will be to elicit from the assembled fathers a strong declaration in favour of the necessity of the Temporal Power. Obviously a secondary object of this Parliament of Bishops, convoked away from Rome, would be to demonstrate to Europe that the Vatican does not enjoy the necessary liberty, although the Act of Guarantee proves that the Italian Government, in its desire for reconciliation and its readiness to meet the wishes of the Curia, has actually done everything that lies in its power.


Pope Pius IX proclaimed two dogmas
Pius was adamant about his role as the highest teaching authority in the Church. He promoted the foundations of Catholic Universities in Belgium and France and supported Catholic associations with the intellectual aim to explain the faith to non-believers and non-Catholics. The Ambrosian Circle in Italy, the Union of Catholic Workers in France and the Pius Verein and the Deutsche Katholische Gesellschaft in Germany all tried to bring the Catholic faith in its fullness to people outside of the Church.


Pius shared a strong devotion to the Virgin Mary with many of his contemporaries, who contributed to Roman Catholic Mariology. Marian doctrines featured prominently in 19th century theology, especially the issue of the Immaculate Conception of Mary. During his pontificate, petitions increased requesting the dogmatization of the Immaculate Conception. In 1848 Pius appointed a theological commission to analyze the possibility for a Marian dogma.

Thirty-eight Encyclicals

Pius issued a record 38 encyclicals. They include: Qui Pluribus (1846) dealt with faith and religion; Praedecessores Nostros (1847) with aid for Ireland; Ubi Primum 1848 with The Immaculate Conception; Nostis Et Nobiscum 1849 with the Church in the Papal States; Neminem Vestrum 1854 with the bloody Persecution of Armenians; Cum Nuper 1858 with the care for Clerics; Amantissimus 1862 with the Care of the Churches; Meridionali Americae 1865 with the Seminary for the Native Clergy; Omnem Sollicitudinem 1874 |about the Greek-Ruthenian Rite; Quod Nunquam 1875 the Church in Prussia. On 7 February 1862 he issued the papal constitution Ad Universalis Ecclesiae, dealing with the conditions for admission to religious orders of men in which solemn vows are prescribed. Unlike popes in the 20th century, Pius IX did not use encyclicals to explain the faith, but to condemn what he considered errors. Pius IX was the first pope to popularize encyclicals on a large scale to foster his views.

First Vatican Council

The First Vatican Council presided by Pius IX
Pius decisively acted on the century-old disagreement between Dominicans and Franciscans regarding the Immaculate Conception of Mary, deciding in favor of the Franciscan view. However, this decision, which he formulated as an infallible dogma, raised a question: Can a Pope make such decisions without the bishops? This foreshadowed one topic of the Vatican Council, which he later convened for 1869. The Pope did consult the bishops beforehand with his encyclical Ubi Primum (see below), but insisted on having this issue clarified nevertheless. The Council was to deal with Papal Infallibility, enhancing the role of the papacy and decreasing the role of the bishops. The role of the bishops was to be dealt with at the Council, but it was disbanded because of the imminent attack by Italy against the Papal States. Thus, the major achievements of Pius IX are his Mariology and Vatican I. 


Pius IX approved 74 new religious congregations for women alone. In France, Pius created over 200 new dioceses and created new hierarchies in several countries.

Last years and death

Pius IX death mask
Pius IX lived long enough to witness the death of his old adversary, Victor Emmanuel II of Italy in January 1878. As soon as he learned about the seriousness of the situation of the king, he absolved him of all excommunications and other ecclesiastical punishments. Pius IX died one month later on 7 February 1878 at 5:40 pm, of epilepsy, which led to a seizure and a sudden heart attack, while saying the rosary with his staff.

Since 1868, the Pope was plagued first by facial erysipelas and then by open sores on his legs. Nevertheless, he insisted on celebrating daily Mass. The extraordinary heat of the summer of 1877 worsened the sores to the effect that he had to be carried. He underwent several painful medical procedures, which he undertook with remarkable patience. He spent most of his last few weeks in his library, where he received cardinals and held audiences. On 8 December, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, his situation improved markedly to the point that he could walk again. By February, he could say Mass again on his own in standing position, enjoying the popular celebration of the 75th anniversary of his first communion. Bronchitis, a fall to the floor, and rising temperature worsened his situation after 4 February 1878. He continued joking about himself, when the Cardinal Vicar of Rome ordered bell-ringing and non-stop prayers for his recuperation. "Why do you want to stop me from going to heaven?" he asked with a smile. He told his doctor that his time had come. Pope Pius IX died on 7 February 1878, aged 85, concluding the longest pontificate in papal history, after that of St Peter whom tradition holds had reigned for 37 years. His last words were "Guard the church I loved so well and sacredly," as recorded by the Cardinals kneeling beside his bedside. His body was originally buried in St. Peter's grotto, but was moved in a night procession on 13 July 1881 to the Basilica of Saint Lawrence outside the Walls. When the cortege approached the Tiber River, a gang of anticlerical Romans threatened to throw the coffin into the river but a contingent of militia arrived.


Card. Pecci (Leo XIII) certifies the death of Pope Pius IX
The process for his beatification, which in the early parts was strongly opposed by the Italian government, was begun on 11 February 1907, and recommenced three times. The Italian government had since 1878 strongly opposed beatification of Pius IX. Without Italian opposition, Pope John Paul II declared him venerable on 6 July 1985, and beatified him on 3 September 2000 (his commemoration is 7 February). This latter ceremony also included the beatification of Pope John XXIII (1958–63).

The beatification of Pius was controversial, and was criticized by Jews and Christians because of what was perceived as his authoritarian, reactionary politics; the accusation of abuse of episcopal powers; and antisemitism (specifically the case of Edgardo Mortara). Critics contend that his beatification placed "an unbearable burden on relations between Jews and Catholics," especially given Pope John Paul II's conciliatory gestures toward Judaism. The process coincided with the canonization of Edith Stein, likewise controversial. Hans Küng saw the beatification of Pius IX as evidence of the degeneration of canonizations to "gestures of church politics."


Tomb of Blessed Pius IX
Pius IX celebrated his silver jubilee in 1871, going on to have the longest reign in the history of the post-apostolic papacy, 31 years, 7 months and 23 days. As his temporal sovereignty was lost, the Roman Catholic Church rallied around him, and the papacy became more centralized, to which his personal life-style of simplicity and poverty is considered to have contributed. From this point on, the papacy became and continues to become increasingly a spiritual, and less a temporal, authority. Pius IX's pontificate marks the beginning of the modern papacy.

Having started as a liberal, Pius IX turned conservative after being thrown out of Rome. Thereafter, he was considered politically conservative, but a restless and radical reformer and innovator of Church life and structures. Church life, religious vocations, new foundations and religious enthusiasm all flourished at the end of his pontificate. Politically, his pontificate ended with the isolation of the papacy from most major powers of the world: "The prisoner of the Vatican" had poor relations with Russia, Germany, and the United States, poor relations with France and open hostility with Italy. Yet he was most popular with the faithful in all these countries, in many of which Pope Pius associations were formed in his support. He made lasting Church history with his 1854 infallible decision of the Immaculate Conception, which was the basis for the later dogma on the Assumption. His other lasting contribution is the invocation of the ecumenical council Vatican One, which promulgated the definition of Papal infallibility. With his advice he helped Saint John Bosco found the Salesian Society, for which reason he is also called „don Bosco's Pope”.

The Prophecy of the Popes, attributed to Saint Malachy, is a list of 112 short phrases in Latin. They purport to describe each of the Roman Catholic popes. It describes Pius IX as Crux de Cruce, Cross of the cross.


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      • Hasler, August Bernhard (1979). Wie der Papst unfelhlbar wurde: Macht und Ohnmacht eines Dogmas. R. Piper & Co. Verlag.
      • Kertzer, David I. (2004). Prisoner of the Vatican: The Popes' Secret Plot to Capture Rome from the New Italian State. Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0-618-22442-4.
      • Martina, S.J. Pio IX (1846–1850) Roma: Editrice Pontificia Universita Gregoriana, Vol I-III, 1974–1991
      • Mooney, John A. "Pius IX and the Revolution, 1846-1848," The American Catholic Quarterly Review, Vol. XVII, 1892.
      • Pougeois, Histoire de Pie IX, son pontificat et son siecle, Vol I-VI, Paris, 1877
      • Schmidlin, Josef, Papstgeschichte, Vol I-IV, Köstel-Pusztet München, 1922–1939
      • John Gilmary Shea, The Life of Pope Pius IX, New York, 1877
      • Sylvain, Histoire de Pie IX le Grand et de son pontificat, Vol I,II, Paris, 1878
      • Franz Spirago, Példatár (Examples from life; from 6. German edition translated Bezerédj László), Szent István-Társulat Budapest, 1927
      • Woodward, Kenneth L. (1996). "Pius IX and the Posthumous Politics of Canonization". Making saints: how the Catholic Church determines who becomes a saint, who doesn't, and why. Simon and Schuster. pp. 309–35. ISBN 978-0-684-81530-5. Retrieved 16 July 2010.


          Featured Items Panel from Litany Lane



          Today's Snippet I:  Senigallia, Italy

          Senigallia (or Sinigaglia until the beginning of the 20th century) is a comune and port town on Italy's Adriatic coast, 25 km by rail north of Ancona, in the Marche region, province of Ancona. The town is one of the most famous seaside resorts of the region, attracting tourists (mainly families) from all over Europe: especially from Germany, Belgium, and the Netherlands. The small port is formed by the lower reaches of the Misa, a river which flows through the town between embankments constructed of Istrian marble.


          Senigallia, spread out along the coast at the mouth of the river Misa, was founded in the 4th century B.C. by the Gallic tribe of the Senones and became the first Roman colony on the Adriatic shore. A colony was founded there by the Romans after their victory over the Senones, rather before 280 BC: the name is probably a later Roman corruption of Senones; the addition Gallica distinguishes it from Saena (Siena) in Etruria. The place is also mentioned in connection with Hasdrubal's defeat at the Metaurus in 207 BC. It was destroyed by Pompey in 82 BC, and is not often mentioned afterwards.

          Ravaged by Alaric, Senigallia was fortified by the Byzantines, and again laid waste by the Lombards in the 8th century and by the Saracens in the 9th.

          It was the second easternmost of the five cities of the medieval Adriatic duchy of Pentapolis, east of Fano and west of Ancona.

          Senigallia used to hold one of the largest fairs in Italy, which dated originally from 1200, when Sergius, count of Senigallia, received from the count of Marseilles, to whose daughter he was affianced, certain relics of Mary Magdalene; this fair used to be visited by merchants from France, Switzerland, Austria, Germany and especially the Levant.

          Senigallia was at length brought so low by the Guelph and Ghibelline wars, and especially by the severities of Guido I da Montefeltro, that it was chosen by Dante as the typical instance of a ruined city. In the 15th century it was captured and recaptured again and again by the Malatesta and their opponents. Sigismondo Pandolfo Malatesta of Rimini erected strong fortifications round the town in 1450-1455. The lordship of Senigallia was bestowed by Pius II on his nephew Antonio Piccolomini, but the people of the town in 1464 placed themselves anew under Pope Paul II, and Giacomo Piccolomini in 1472 failed in his attempt to seize the place. In 1503, Cesare Borgia carried out a bloody coup at Senigallia, against some of his disloyal supporters. Sixtus IV assigned the lordship to the Della Rovere family, from whom it was transferred to Lorenzo de Medici in 1516. After 1624 it formed part of the Papal State's legation (province) of Urbino.

          Main sights

          Despite its ancient origin the city presents a modern appearance, with wide streets. Attractions include:
          • Palazzo Comunale, from the 17th century.
          • The Castle (Rocca Roveresca), of Gothic origin, was restored by Baccio Pontelli in 1492. It has a square plan with four large round tower.
          • The Cathedral, erected after 1787.
          • The church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, outside the town, is one of the only two churches which he is known to have executed (the other is at Orciano near Mondavio, about 20 km to the west by road). It housed the painting of Madonna di Senigallia by Piero della Francesca.
          • The Rotonda a mare.


          • Sinigaglia" — article on the Catholic diocese, from the New Advent Catholic Encyclopædia
          • "The Senigaglia Family" — A very old Italian Jewish family that lived in Senigallia during the 1400s (branches now live in Europe and America).
          •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
          • Senigallia In a Nutshell: An Illustrated Guidebook to Senigallia


          Today's Snippet II:  Apostolic Palace, Vatican, Rome Italy

          The Apostolic Palace is the official residence of the Pope, which is located in Vatican City. It is also known as the Sacred Palace, the Papal Palace and the Palace of the Vatican. The Vatican itself refers to the building as the Palace of Sixtus V in honor of Pope Sixtus V.

          The palace is more accurately a series of self-contained buildings within the well-recognised outer structure which is arranged around the Courtyard of Sixtus V (Cortile di Sisto V). It is located North-East of St Peter's Basilica and adjacent to the Bastion of Nicholas V and Palace of Gregory XIII.

          Rather than a traditional palace (a residential building surrounded by support buildings) the Apostolic Palace houses both residential and support offices of various functions as well as administrative offices not focused on the life and functions of the Pope himself.

          The building contains the Papal Apartments, various government offices of the Roman Catholic Church and the Holy See, private and public chapels, Vatican Museums and the Vatican library, including the Borgia Apartment now used to house artworks.


          The ancient Vatican Palace had fallen into disrepair during the period of the Avignon Papacy, when the popes did not reside in Rome. In 1436 the Spanish traveller Pedro Tafur found it still in poor condition: "The Pope's dwelling is a mediocre place and when I was there it was ill-kept."

          Construction of the current version of the palace began on 30 April 1589 under Pope Sixtus V and its various intrinsic parts completed by later successors, Pope Urban VII, Pope Innocent XI and Pope Clement VIII.

          In the 15th century, the Apostolic palace was placed under the authority of the prefect of the Apostolic palace. This position of Apostolic prefect lasted from the 15th century till the 1800s, when the Papal States fell into economic difficulties. In 1884, when this post was reviewed to save money, Leo XIII created a committee to administer the palace.

          Other uses

          The term Apostolic Palace has been used in other contexts not directly related to the actual Palace of Sixtus V.  It has been used, for example, as a metonym for the papacy itself in the same way the term "White House" is used to describe the United States Presidential administration generally, rather than the physical building itself.

          The term was also referenced in the video game Civilization IV: Beyond the Sword, where a player could establish an Apostolic Palace as the symbolic "home" of a civilization's state religion. While the game's developers did represent the Apostolic Palace function with an image of St. Peter's Square (adjacent to the Apostolic Palace), the image, somewhat ironically, does not actually include a view of the Palace itself. Regardless, the in-game function of the Apostolic Palace is not religion-specific and the use of the term is representative of religious administration generally, rather than a specific reference to the Vatican.


              • Levillain, Philippe (2002), Dictionnaire historique de la papauté, The Papacy: An Encyclopedia, II (Illustrated ed.), Routledge, ISBN 0-415-92230-5, retrieved 20 December 2009
              • Morton, H.V. (2002), A Traveller in Rome (Reprint ed.), Da Capo Press, ISBN 0-306-81131-6, retrieved 20 December 2009


                  Catechism of the Catholic Church

                  Part One: Profession of Faith, Sect 2 The Creeds, Chapter 1:1:6

                  CHAPTER ONE

                  I BELIEVE IN GOD THE FATHER
                  198 Our profession of faith begins with God, for God is the First and the Last,Cf. Is 44:6 The beginning and the end of everything. the Credo begins with God the Father, for the Father is the first divine person of the Most Holy Trinity; our Creed begins with the creation of heaven and earth, for creation is the beginning and the foundation of all God's works.

                  Article 1

                  Paragraph 6. MAN

                  355 "God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them."Gen 1:27 Man occupies a unique place in creation: (I) he is "in the image of God"; (II) in his own nature he unites the spiritual and material worlds; (III) he is created "male and female"; (IV) God established him in his friendship.

                  I. "IN THE IMAGE OF GOD"
                  356 of all visible creatures only man is "able to know and love his creator".GS 12 # 3 He is "the only creature on earth that God has willed for its own sake",GS 24 # 3and he alone is called to share, by knowledge and love, in God's own life. It was for this end that he was created, and this is the fundamental reason for his dignity:  What made you establish man in so great a dignity? Certainly the incalculable love by which you have looked on your creature in yourself! You are taken with love for her; for by love indeed you created her, by love you have given her a being capable of tasting your eternal Good. St. Catherine of Siena, Dialogue IV, 13 "On Divine Providence": LH,
                     Sunday, week 19, OR.

                  357 Being in the image of God the human individual possesses the dignity of a person, who is not just something, but someone. He is capable of self-knowledge, of self-possession and of freely giving himself and entering into communion with other persons. and he is called by grace to a covenant with his Creator, to offer him a response of faith and love that no other creature can give in his stead.

                  358 God created everything for man,GS 12 # 1; 24 # 3; 39 # 1 but man in turn was created to serve and love God and to offer all creation back to him: What is it that is about to be created, that enjoys such honour? It is man that great and wonderful living creature, more precious in the eyes of God than all other creatures! For him the heavens and the earth, the sea and all the rest of creation exist. God attached so much importance to his salvation that he did not spare his own Son for the sake of man. Nor does he ever cease to work, trying every possible means, until he has raised man up to himself and made him sit at his right hand. St. John Chrysostom, In Gen. sermo 2, 1: PG 54, 587D-588A

                  359 "In reality it is only in the mystery of the Word made flesh that the mystery of man truly becomes clear."GS 22 # 1
                  St. Paul tells us that the human race takes its origin from two men: Adam and Christ. . . the first man, Adam, he says, became a living soul, the last Adam a life-giving spirit. the first Adam was made by the last Adam, from whom he also received his soul, to give him life... the second Adam stamped his image on the first Adam when he created him. That is why he took on himself the role and the name of the first Adam, in order that he might not lose what he had made in his own image. the first Adam, the last Adam: the first had a beginning, the last knows no end. the last Adam is indeed the first; as he himself says: "I am the first and the last."St. Peter Chrysologus, Sermo 117: PL 52, 520-521

                  360 Because of its common origin the human race forms a unity, for "from one ancestor (God) made all nations to inhabit the whole earth":Acts 17:26; cf. Tob 8:6
                  O wondrous vision, which makes us contemplate the human race in the unity of its origin in God. . . in the unity of its nature, composed equally in all men of a material body and a spiritual soul; in the unity of its immediate end and its mission in the world; in the unity of its dwelling, the earth, whose benefits all men, by right of nature, may use to sustain and develop life; in the unity of its supernatural end: God himself, to whom all ought to tend; in the unity of the means for attaining this end;. . . in the unity of the redemption wrought by Christ for all.Pius XII. Enc. Summi pontificatus 3; cf. NA 1

                  361 "This law of human solidarity and charity",Pius XII Summi pontificatus 3 without excluding the rich variety of persons, cultures and peoples, assures us that all men are truly brethren.

                  II. "BODY AND SOUL BUT TRULY ONE"

                  362 The human person, created in the image of God, is a being at once corporeal and spiritual. the biblical account expresses this reality in symbolic language when it affirms that "then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being."Gen 2:7 Man, whole and entire, is therefore willed by God.

                  363 In Sacred Scripture the term "soul" often refers to human life or the entire human person.f. Mt 16:25-26; Jn 15:13; Acts 2:41 But "soul" also refers to the innermost aspect of man, that which is of greatest value in him,Mt 10:28; 26:38; Jn 12:27; 2 Macc 6 30 that by which he is most especially in God's image: "soul" signifies the spiritual principle in man.

                  364 The human body shares in the dignity of "the image of God": it is a human body precisely because it is animated by a spiritual soul, and it is the whole human person that is intended to become, in the body of Christ, a temple of the Spirit:I Cor 6:19-20; 15:44-45
                  Man, though made of body and soul, is a unity. Through his very bodily condition he sums up in himself the elements of the material world. Through him they are thus brought to their highest perfection and can raise their voice in praise freely given to the Creator. For this reason man may not despise his bodily life. Rather he is obliged to regard his body as good and to hold it in honour since God has created it and will raise it up on the last day GS 14 # 1; cf. Dan 3:57-80

                  365 The unity of soul and body is so profound that one has to consider the soul to be the "form" of the body: Council of Vienne (1312): DS 902 i.e., it is because of its spiritual soul that the body made of matter becomes a living, human body; spirit and matter, in man, are not two natures united, but rather their union forms a single nature.

                  366 The Church teaches that every spiritual soul is created immediately by God - it is not "produced" by the parents - and also that it is immortal: it does not perish when it separates from the body at death, and it will be reunited with the body at the final Resurrection.Cf. Pius XII, Humani generis: DS 3896; Paul VI, CPC # 8; Lateran
                     Council V (1513): DS 1440

                  367 Sometimes the soul is distinguished from the spirit: St. Paul for instance prays that God may sanctify his people "wholly", with "spirit and soul and body" kept sound and blameless at the Lord's coming.Th 5:23 The Church teaches that this distinction does not introduce a duality into the soul.Council of Constantinople IV (870): DS 657 "Spirit" signifies that from creation man is ordered to a supernatural end and that his soul can gratuitously be raised beyond all it deserves to communion with God.Vatican Council I, Dei Filius: DS 3005; GS 22 # 5; Humani generis:
                     DS 3891

                  368 The spiritual tradition of the Church also emphasizes the heart, in the biblical sense of the depths of one's being, where the person decides for or against God.Jer 31:33; Dt 6:5; 29:3; Is 29:13; Ezek 36:26; Mt 6:21; Lk 8:15; Rom 5:5.


                  Equality and difference willed by God

                  369 Man and woman have been created, which is to say, willed by God: on the one hand, in perfect equality as human persons; on the other, in their respective beings as man and woman. "Being man" or "being woman" is a reality which is good and willed by God: man and woman possess an inalienable dignity which comes to them immediately from God their Creator.Gen 2:7, 22 Man and woman are both with one and the same dignity "in the image of God". In their "being-man" and "being-woman", they reflect the Creator's wisdom and goodness.

                  370 In no way is God in man's image. He is neither man nor woman. God is pure spirit in which there is no place for the difference between the sexes. But the respective "perfections" of man and woman reflect something of the infinite perfection of God: those of a mother and those of a father and husband.Is 49:14-15; 66: 13; Ps 131:2-3; ] Hos 11:1-4; Jer 3:4- 19
                  "Each for the other" - "A unity in two"

                  371 God created man and woman together and willed each for the other. the Word of God gives us to understand this through various features of the sacred text. "It is not good that the man should be alone. I will make him a helper fit for him."Gen 2:18 None of the animals can be man's partner.Gen 2:19-20 The woman God "fashions" from the man's rib and brings to him elicits on the man's part a cry of wonder, an exclamation of love and communion: "This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh."Gen 2:23 Man discovers woman as another "I", sharing the same humanity.

                  372 Man and woman were made "for each other" - not that God left them half-made and incomplete: he created them to be a communion of persons, in which each can be "helpmate" to the other, for they are equal as persons ("bone of my bones. . .") and complementary as masculine and feminine. In marriage God unites them in such a way that, by forming "one flesh",Gen 2:24 they can transmit human life: "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth."Gen 1:28 By transmitting human life to their descendants, man and woman as spouses and parents co-operate in a unique way in the Creator's work. GS 50 # 1

                  373 In God's plan man and woman have the vocation of "subduing" the earth Gen 1:28 as stewards of God. This sovereignty is not to be an arbitrary and destructive domination. God calls man and woman, made in the image of the Creator "who loves everything that exists",Wis 11:24 to share in his providence toward other creatures; hence their responsibility for the world God has entrusted to them.

                  IV. MAN IN PARADISE

                  374 The first man was not only created good, but was also established in friendship with his Creator and in harmony with himself and with the creation around him, in a state that would be surpassed only by the glory of the new creation in Christ.

                  375 The Church, interpreting the symbolism of biblical language in an authentic way, in the light of the New Testament and Tradition, teaches that our first parents, Adam and Eve, were constituted in an original "state of holiness and justice".Council of Trent (1546): DS 1511 This grace of original holiness was "to share in. . .divine life".LG 2

                  376 By the radiance of this grace all dimensions of man's life were confirmed. As long as he remained in the divine intimacy, man would not have to suffer or die.Gen 2:17; 3:16, 19 The inner harmony of the human person, the harmony between man and woman,Gen 2:25 and finally the harmony between the first couple and all creation, comprised the state called "original justice".

                  377 The "mastery" over the world that God offered man from the beginning was realized above all within man himself: mastery of self. the first man was unimpaired and ordered in his whole being because he was free from the triple concupiscenceJn 2:16 that subjugates him to the pleasures of the senses, covetousness for earthly goods, and self-assertion, contrary to the dictates of reason.

                  378 The sign of man's familiarity with God is that God places him in the garden. Gen 2:8 There he lives "to till it and keep it". Work is not yet a burden,Gen 2:15; cf. 3:17-19 but rather the collaboration of man and woman with God in perfecting the visible creation.

                  379 This entire harmony of original justice, foreseen for man in God's plan, will be lost by the sin of our first parents.

                  IN BRIEF
                  380 "Father,. . . you formed man in your own likeness and set him over the whole world to serve you, his creator, and to rule over all creatures" (Roman Missal, EP IV, 118).

                  381 Man is predestined to reproduce the image of God's Son made man, the "image of the invisible God" ( Col 1:15), so that Christ shall be the first-born of a multitude of brothers and sisters (cf Eph 1:3-6; Rom 8:29).

                  382 "Man, though made of body and soul, is a unity" (GS 14 # 1). the doctrine of the faith affirms that the spiritual and immortal soul is created immediately by God.

                  383 "God did not create man a solitary being. From the beginning, "male and female he created them" ( Gen 1:27). This partnership of man and woman constitutes the first form of communion between persons" (GS 12 # 4).

                  384 Revelation makes known to us the state of original holiness and justice of man and woman before sin: from their friendship with God flowed the happiness of their existence in paradise.