"Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words."

A special "Thank you!"
Goes out to
John Michael Talbot
for giving us permission
to use his song on our
"Come to the Quiet"
You Tube Video
_______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________

Tuesday, October 03, 2023

October 3rd: The Transitus of St. Francis of Assisi


Then he (St. Francis) asked the Brothers to read the passage of St. John's Gospel which begins: "Before the paschal feast began" (John 13:1); only a partition of flesh now separated him from his Beloved and he would listen to the beat of his voice in the Gospel phrases. All God's mysteries had been finally accomplished in him and he died quietly, praying and singing the psalm. His holy soul was freed from his body and absorbed in the abyss of eternal glory.

Saint Francis of Assisi
Bonaventure, Minor Life
Chapter VII


Monday, October 02, 2023

"Rebuild My Church"


When Saint Francis heard those words from the mouth of the Lord, speaking through the San Damiano crucifix in a small, dilapidated church, he took them to mean simply rebuilding that little church outside Assisi. It was in the Portiuncula that he founded the Friars Minor; there that he clothed Clare in the religious habit and began the Order of Poor Clares; and there that Francis yearly gathered the friars in chapter to discuss the rule and renew their dedication to the Gospel life. And it was at the Portiuncula where St. Francis died in 1226.

That first tiny Portiuncula, a holy place and the center of St. Francis’ activity, will be recreated here on The Immaculate Conception Cemetery in Jerusalem, Ohio as a grace-filled haven for quiet meditation and Eucharistic Adoration. Nestled in a grove of trees visitors will be invited to “come and spend an hour with the Lord” in prayer.

This small chapel will be completed in the Fall of 2024, like St. Francis’ 13th-century original, it will become a place of adoration, conversion, and prayer. The simple beauty of the small stone structure will reverberate with the power of the Lord’s presence. The stillness, imbued with the peace of the Lord’s tender concern, will draw visitors in and focuses attention on the Eucharistic Lord.


Monday, September 18, 2023

Sunday, September 10, 2023

Dangerous Ohio Constitutional Amendment


Beginning Friday, September 15th, Catholics across the state of Ohio will be joining in prayer for the protection of human life and dignity and the defeat of the dangerous constitutional amendment on the Ohio ballot this November. A 54-Day Rosary Novena will be prayed from September 15th through Election Day, November 7th. Visit www.pray54ohio.org for more information.

Fra Chris


Tuesday, June 13, 2023

Christ Is The Basis Of Our Catholic Faith


If Christ is truly the basis for our Catholic faith, then our every action must be considered with great reverence in mind. If He is not then our very existence is moot.


Saturday, March 18, 2023

St. Francis Regarding Ezekiel 3:18

Photo of the T.O.R. Sisters of Steubenville, Ohio

"I would take it to mean that you should be so on fire with life and holiness that the light of your example and the manner of your speaking would be a reproach to the wicked. So, as I understand it, your life shining and your goodness spreading like a sweet odor will proclaim to the wicked their own wickedness."

Celano - Second Life


The Heart's Innocence


Photo of Fra Chris in front of the Portiuncula Hermitage in Jerusalem, Ohio holding "Sorello Chiara," (Sister Clair)

"Since spiritual joy springs from the heart's innocence and the purity of incessant prayer, these are the two virtues we need to acquire and keep."

Saint Francis of Assisi
Mirror of Perfection


Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Environmentalists Are Lost In Slavery To A False god

For created things are less than the human person. They are made for you, not you for them, and so they can never satisfy you. Only I can satisfy you...These souls in one way or another have identified with the earth in their love, and so they have in fact become earth themselves...Some lose me in their slavery to creatures...And the more disordered their love in possessing, the greater is their grief in loss....They suffer because they do not have what they long for.

Catherine of Siena

If through delight in the beauty of these things
men assumed them to be gods,
let them know how much better than these is the Lord,
for the author of beauty created them...
For from the greatness and beauty of created things
comes a corresponding perception of their Creator...
and they trust in what they see,
because the things that are seen are beautiful.
Yet again, not even they are to be excused;
for if they had the power to know so much
they could investigate the world,
how did they fail to find sooner the Lord of these things?

Wisdom 13:3, 5, 7b-9


Friday, March 10, 2023

The Servant Of God Must Show Joy!


Photo of the T.O.R. Sisters of Steubenville

If Saint Francis saw any of his companions with a sad or downcast countenance, he reproved him, saying: "If thou art grieving over thy sins, my brother, why dost thou show thy sorrow exteriorly? Let this sadness be between thee and God, and pray to him that through his mercy he may spare thee and restore to thy soul the joy of salvation, which thou hast lost through thy sins. But before me and others, show thyself always joyful, for it does not become the servant of God to manifest sadness exteriorly, nor to have a troubled countenance."

St. Francis of Assisi
Miscellaneous Writings


Footprints In The Water

To say that the road the soul travels to God is through the sea (the Prophet Baruch) and that His footsteps are in the many waters and so unknowable is to say that the way to God is as hidden to the inner senses as would be footprints on the water of the outer senses. The traces God leaves on the souls He wants to bring to Himself are unrecognizable. Secret.

St. John of the Cross
Dark Night of the Soul
Night of the Spirit


Sunday, March 05, 2023

The Power Of Christ Compels You!

Virtus Christi urget te!




Here begins the Rule of the Continent Brothers and Sisters: In the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. The memorial of what is proposed for the Brothers and Sisters of Penance, living in their own homes, begun in the year of our Lord 1221, is as follows. 


1. The men belonging to this brotherhood shall dress in humble, undyed cloth, the price of which is not to exceed six Ravenna soldi[2] an ell[3], unless for evident and necessary cause a temporary dispensation be given. And breadth and thinness of the cloth are to be considered in said price. 

2. They shall wear their outer garments and furred coats without open throat, sewed shut or uncut but certainly laced up, not open as secular people wear them; and they shall wear their sleeves closed. 

3. The sisters in turn shall wear an outer garment and tunic made of cloth of the same price and humble quality; or at least they are to have with the outer garment a white or black underwrap or petticoat, or an ample linen gown without gathers[4], the price of an ell of which is not to exceed twelve Pisa denars.[5] As to this price, however, and the fur cloaks they wear a dispensation may be given according to the estate of the woman and the custom of the place. They are not to wear silken or dyed veils and ribbons. 

 4. And both the brothers and the sisters shall have their fur garments of lamb's wool only. They are permitted to have leather purses and belts sewed in simple fashion without silken thread, and no other kind. Also other vain adornments they shall lay aside at the bidding of the Visitor. 

 5. They are not to go to unseemly parties or to shows or dances. They shall not donate to actors[6], and shall forbid their household to donate. 


6. All are to abstain from meat save on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, except on account of illness or weakness, for three days at blood-letting, in traveling, or on account of a specially high feast intervening, namely, the Nativity for three days, New Year's, Epiphany, the Pasch of the Resurrection for three days, Assumption of the glorious Virgin Mary, the solemnity of All Saints and of St. Martin[7]. On the other days, when there is no fasting, they may eat cheese and eggs. But when they are with religious in their convent homes, they have leave to eat what is served to them. And except for the feeble, the ailing, and those traveling, let them be content with dinner and supper. Let the healthy be temperate in eating and drinking. 

7. Before their dinner and supper let them say the Lord's prayer once, likewise after their meal, and let them give thanks to God. Otherwise let them say three Our Fathers. 


8. From the Pasch of the Resurrection to the feast of All Saints they are to fast on Fridays. From the feast of All Saints until Easter they are to fast on Wednesdays and Fridays, but still observing the other fasts enjoined in general by the Church. 

9. They are to fast daily, except on account of infirmity or any other need, throughout the fast of St. Martin from after said day until Christmas, and throughout the greater fast from Carnival Sunday[8] until Easter. 

10. Sisters who are pregnant are free to refrain until their purification from the corporal observances except those regarding their dress and prayers. 

11. Those engaged in fatiguing work shall be allowed to take food three times a day from the Pasch of the Resurrection until the Dedication feast of St. Michael[9]. And when they work for others it will be allowed them to eat everything served to them, except on Fridays and on the fasts enjoined in general by the Church. CHAPTER IV: PRAYER 

12. All are daily to say the seven canonical Hours, that is: Matins[10], Prime[11], Terce[12], Sext[13], None[14], Vespers[15], and Compline[16]. The clerics are to say them after the manner of the clergy. Those who know the Psalter are to say the Deus in nomine tuo (Psalm 54) and the Beati Immaculati (Psalm 119) up to the Legem pone (Verse 33) for Prime, and the other psalms of the Hours, with the Glory Be to the Father; but when they do not attend church, they are to say for Matins the psalms the Church says or any eighteen psalms; or at least to say the Our Father as do the unlettered at any of the Hours. The others say twelve Our Fathers for Matins and for every one of the other Hours seven Our Fathers with the Glory Be to the Father after each one. And those who know the Creed and the Miserere mei Deus (Ps. 51) should say it at Prime and Compline. If they do not say that at the Hours indicated, they shall say three Our Fathers. 

13. The sick are not to say the Hours unless they wish. 

14. All are to go to Matins in the fast of St. Martin and in the great fast, unless inconvenience for persons or affairs should threaten. 


15. They are to make a confession of their sins three times a year and to receive Communion at Christmas, Easter, and Pentecost. They are to be reconciled with their neighbors and to restore what belongs to others. They are to make up for past tithes and pay future tithes. 

16. They are not to take up lethal weapons, or bear them about, against anybody. 

17. All are to refrain from formal oaths unless where necessity compels, in the cases excepted by the Sovereign Pontiff in his indult, that is, for peace, for the Faith, under calumny, and in bearing witness. 

18. Also in their ordinary conversations they will do their best to avoid oaths. And should anyone have sworn thoughtlessly through a slip of the tongue, as happens where there is much talking, he should the evening of the same day, when he is obliged to think over what he has done, say three Our Fathers in amends of such oaths. Let each member fortify his household to serve God. 


19. All the brothers and sisters of every city and place are to foregather every month at the time the ministers see fit, in a church which the ministers will make known, and there assist at Divine Services. 

20. And every member is to give the treasurer one ordinary denar[17]. The treasurer is to collect this money and distribute it on the advice of the ministers among the poor brothers and sisters, especially the sick and those who may have nothing for their funeral services, and thereupon among the poor; and they are to offer something of the money to the aforesaid church. 

21. And, if it be convenient at the time, they are to have some religious who is informed in the words of God to exhort them and strengthen them to persevere in their penance and in performing the works of mercy. And except for the officers, they are to remain quiet during the Mass and sermon, intent on the Office, on prayer, and on the sermon. 


22. Whenever any brother or sister happens to fall ill, the ministers, if the patient let them know of it, shall in person or through others visit the patient once a week, and remind him of penance; and if they find it expedient, they are to supply him from the common fund with what he may need for the body. 

23. And if the ailing person depart from this life, it is to be published to the brothers and sisters who may be present in the city or place, so that they may gather for the funeral; and they are not to leave until the Mass has been celebrated and the body consigned to burial. Thereupon each member within eight days of the demise shall say for the soul of the deceased: a Mass, if he is a priest; fifty psalms, if he understands the Psalter, or if not, then fifty Our Fathers with the Requiem aeternam[18] at the end of each. 

24. In addition, every year, for the welfare of the brothers and sisters living and dead, each priest is to say three Masses, each member knowing the Psalter is to recite it, and the rest shall say one hundred Our Fathers with the Requiem aeternam at the end of each. 

25. All who have the right are to make their last will and make disposition of their goods within three months after their profession, lest anyone of them die intestate. 

26. As regards making peace among the brothers and sisters or non-members at odds, let what the ministers find proper be done; even, if it be expedient, upon consultation with the Lord Bishop. 

27. If contrary to their right and privileges trouble is made for the brothers and sisters by the mayors and governors of the places where they live, the ministers of the place shall do what they shall find expedient on the advice of the Lord Bishop. 

28. Let each member accept and faithfully exercise the ministry of other offices imposed on him, although anyone may retire from office after a year. 

29. When anybody wishes to enter this brotherhood, the ministers shall carefully inquire into his standing and occupation, and they shall explain to him the obligations of the brotherhood, especially that of restoring what belongs to others. And it he is content with it, let him be vested according to the prescribed way, and he must make satisfaction for his debts, paying money according to what pledged provision is given. They are to reconcile themselves with their neighbors and to pay up their tithes. 

30. After these particulars are complied with, when the year is up and he seems suitable to them, let him on the advice of some discreet brothers be received on this condition: that he promise he will all the time of his life observe everything here written, or to be written or abated on the advice of the brothers, unless on occasion there be a valid dispensation by the ministers; and that he will, when called upon by the ministers, render satisfaction as the Visitor shall ordain if he have done anything contrary to this condition. And this promise is to be put in writing then and there by a public notary. Even so nobody is to be received otherwise, unless in consideration of the estate and rank of the person it shall seem advisable to the ministers. 

31. No one is to depart from this brotherhood and from what is contained herein, except to enter a religious Order. 

32. No heretic or person in bad repute for heresy is to be received. If he is under suspicion of it, he may be admitted if otherwise fit, upon being cleared before the bishop. 

33. Married women are not to be received except with the consent and leave of their husbands. 

34. Brothers and sisters ejected form the brotherhood as incorrigible are not to be received in it again except it please the saner portion of the brothers. 


35. The ministers of any city or place shall report public faults of the brothers and sisters to the Visitor for punishment. And if anyone proves incorrigible, after consultation with some of the discreet brothers he should be denounced to the Visitor, to be expelled by him from the brotherhood, and thereupon it should be published in the meeting. Moreover, if it is a brother, he should be denounced to the mayor or the governor. 

36. If anyone learns that a scandal is occurring relative to brothers and sisters, he shall report it to the ministers and shall have opportunity to report it to the Visitor. He need not be held to report it in the case of husband against wife. 

37. The Visitor has the power to dispense all the brothers and sisters in any of these points if he finds it advisable. 

38. When the year has passed, the ministers with the counsel of the brothers are to elect two other ministers; and a faithful treasurer, who is to provide for the need of the brothers and sisters and other poor; and messengers who at the command of the ministers are to publish what is said and done by the fraternity.

 39. In all the above mentioned points no one is to be obligated under guilt, but under penalty; yet so that if after being admonished twice by the ministers he should fail to discharge the penalty imposed or to be imposed on him by the Visitor, he shall be obligated under guilt as contumacious. 


Author: Cardinal Hugolino dei Conti dei Segni who wrote this Rule at the request of St. Francis of Assisi, 1221


Saturday, March 04, 2023

Prophesy Of Fr. Michael Scanlan, T.O.R. In 1980


Fr. Michael Scanlan, TOR, 1931-2017

Father Mike was a gentle giant in the Roman Catholic Faith, and a very dear friend. It seems like just yesterday that on a warm Summer day just the two of us walked and talked about Jesus around the hills on the campus of the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Then, a couple years after that, Fr. Mike was a guest on my radio talk show. That was nearly 20 years ago and I have nothing but fond memories of the greatest leader in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal.

Fr. Michael Scanlan – Prophecy of 1980

Ralph Martin of Renewal Ministries posted another prophecy given to Fr. Michael Scanlan in 1980. For the first prophecy of Fr. Scanlan posted, click here:


The Lord God says, “Hear My Word: The time that has been marked by My blessings and gifts is being replaced now by the period to be marked by my judgment and purification. What I have not accomplished by blessings and gifts, I will accomplish by judgment and purification.
My people, My Church is desperately in need of this judgment. They have continued in an adulterous relationship with the spirit of the world. They are not only infected with sin, but they teach sin, embrace sin, dismiss sin. Their leadership has been unable to handle this. There is fragmentation, confusion, throughout the ranks. Satan goes where he will and infects whom he will. He has free access throughout my people—and I will not stand for this.
My people specially blessed in this renewal are more under the spirit of the world than they are under the Spirit of My baptism. They are more determined by fear of what others will think of them—fears of failure and rejection in the world, loss of respect of neighbors and superiors and those around them—than they are determined by fear of me and fear of infidelity to my word.
Therefore, your situation is very, very weak. Your power is so limited. You cannot be considered at this point in the center of the battle and the conflict that is going on.
So this time is now come upon all of you: a time of judgment and of purification. Sin will be called sin. Satan will be unmasked. Fidelity will be held up for what it is and should be. My faithful servants will be seen and will come together. They will not be many in number. It will be a difficult and a necessary time. There will be collapse, difficulties throughout the world.
But more to the issue, there will be purification and persecution among my people. You will have to stand for what you believe. You will have to choose between the world and me. You will have to choose what word you will follow and whom you will respect.
And in that choice, what has not been accomplished by the time of blessing and gifts will be accomplished. What has not been accomplished in the baptism and the flooding of gifts of my Spirit will be accomplished in a baptism of fire. The fire will move among you and it will burn out what is chaff. The fire will move among you individually, corporately, in groups, and around the world.
I will not tolerate the situation that is going on. I will not tolerate the mixture and the adulterous treating of gifts and graces and blessings with infidelity, sin, and prostitution. My time is now among you.
What you need to do is to come before Me in total submission to My Word, in total submission to My plan, in the total submission in this new hour. What you need to do is to drop the things that are your own, those things of the past. What you need to do is to see yourselves and those whom you have responsibility for in light of this hour of judgment and purification. You need to see them in that way and do for them what will best help them to stand strong and be among My faithful servants.
For there will be casualties. It will not be easy, but it is necessary. It is necessary that My people be, in fact, my people; that My Church be, in fact, My Church; and that My Spirit, in fact, bring forth the purity of life, the purity and fidelity to the Gospel.
Fr. Michael Scanlan TOR, sits in Christ the King Chapel at Franciscan University of Steubenville. Scanlan died at the age of 85 in 2017. 


Friday, March 03, 2023

Communion In The Hand A Sacrilege?


"...take care to lose no part of It [the Body of the Lord] . Such a loss would be the mutilation of your own body. Why, if you had been given gold-dust, would you not take the utmost care to hold it fast, not letting a grain slip through your fingers, lest you be so much the poorer? How much more carefully, then, will you guard against losing so much as a crumb of that which is more precious than gold or precious stones?"

St. Cyril of Jerusalem


Thursday, March 02, 2023

The Church Prescribes The Use Of The Paten


The Church prescribes the use of the paten for Communion to avoid having any particles of the Sacred Host fall to the ground (see Missale Romanum, Institutioo generalis, number 118; Redemptionis episcoporum, number 93) and that the bishop wash his hands after distribution of Communion ( see Caeremoniale episcoporum, number 166). When Communion is given in the hand, not infrequently particles separate from the Host, either falling to the ground or remaining on the palm and fingers of the communicants.


Wednesday, March 01, 2023

Prayer of St. Francis Before the Crucifix


Most High, Glorious God,

enlighten the darkness in my heart,

and give me correct FAITH,

sure HOPE and perfect CHARITY,

with understanding and knowledge, Lord,

so that I may fulfill Your true and holy command,



Friday, February 24, 2023


Quod ore sumpsimus Comine, pura mente capiamus: et de munere temporali fiat nobis remedium sempiternum.

(Grant, O Lord, WHAT WE HAVE TAKEN WITH OUR MOUTH, we may receive with a pure mind; and that from a temporal gift it may become for us an everlasting remedy.)

Excerpts taken from The Holy Mass: 

The Communion of the Faithful


The Ablutions


Thursday, February 16, 2023

Communion In The Hand Or On The Tongue? Simply Read Your Bible...


Saint Padre Pio receiving Communion

“But you, mortal, hear what I say to you; do not be rebellious like that rebellious house; open your mouth and eat what I give you.” And he said unto me, "Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee." Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.   So I opened my mouth, and he gave me the scroll to eat. He said to me, “Mortal, eat this scroll that I give you and fill your stomach with it.” Then I ate it, and in my mouth it was as sweet as honey.

Ezekiel 2:8-9, 3:2-3


Monday, February 13, 2023

Gaze At The Altar


Here is the quote for this week: “When St. Margaret Mary Alacoque attended Holy Mass and would gaze at the altar, she would never fail to glance at the crucifix and the lighted candles. Why? It was to impress on her mind and heart two things: that the crucifix would remind her of what Jesus had done for her; that the lighted candles recall what she must do for Jesus --- that is, sacrifice herself and be consumed for Him and for souls.” 




I Am Nothing But A Cracked, Filthy Jar

I am nothing but an old, cracked, filthy, jar. How can you possibly use me, Lord? Of what value can I be to you or to anyone? I watch as Jesus dumps his life-giving water into me. Immediately all my dirt and filth is washed away. I am being purified. As the water flows like torrents into me, and although my cracks are large and leaking, the amount of water flowing into me is far greater than the amount I lose. Then just as I am completely filled, the dirt and filth flows up over the top and down into the drain. Still the water is poured...more and more. More than I can stand. An overflowing flood. It begins to pour out over me and toward God's people. They come to drink and they too become filled and they begin to overflow. They too are cracked, broken, filthy. Yet they overflow as well. They are cleansed as well. Their dirt flows over the sides and down the drain. More and more people come to drink of your sweet tasting water, Lord. We all share your life-giving water with those whom you love - those who are dying of thirst. You quench us all. O sweet, magnificent water. Refreshed. Come Holy Spirit, come!


Sunday, February 12, 2023

As Christians, We Are All To Be Crucified With Christ


In a vision, the soldiers gathered us all up into a large group. There was no escape. We watched in horror as one-by-one we were taken to a cross and nailed. Most of us were dressed in filthy, tattered, gray robes. A few of us were adorned in pure white robes.

Those in pure white robes began to call out, “Me! Take me! Take me next!”

Those in filthy gray robes cowered in horror at our feet. They screamed, they cried, they flailed. They did everything they could to break away from our captors.

But there was no escape for anyone. We all had to go through the crucifixion.

I wondered what my reaction was going to be. Will I be brave? Will I run up and beg them to allow me to embrace this horror or will I cower and shriek in terror?

Suddenly I looked around and we were all nailed to our crosses, both those in gray robes and those in white. I could see everyone's faces. Everyone was in agony. For some, the agony was unbearable. For others, they embraced the pain and suffering with longing and ecstatic pleasure.

Then from above, Jesus reached down to those dressed in white robes, grabbed one by one by the hand and pulled them up into heaven.The others, those who were dressed in filthy gray rags, were left hanging on their crosses until the flesh rotted off their bones. The stench of rotting flesh was overwhelming!

How can I not embrace suffering and death? How can I not long to be with my Brother, Jesus?

“Me! Take me! Take me next!”


Hallealujah Sung By Levites



Saturday, February 11, 2023

FBI Retracts Anti-Catholic Surveilance Memo, but what about FBI policy? End the Trad Wars!



Set Me Aflame, Lord!


While sitting in front of a fireplace my mind was completely absorbed by the vision of one of the burning logs. I became the log, a completely worthless hunk of wood having been thrown into the fireplace. As I was consumed by the fire, the words of St. John of the Cross came racing into my mind:

“Let's look at this loving knowledge and divine light like a fire. Fire transforms wood into fire. When fire touches wood, the first thing it does is that it begins to dry the wood out. It drives away moisture, causing the wood to shed the tears it has held inside itself. Then the wood blackens, turning dark and ugly; it may even give off a bad odor. Little by little, the fire desiccates the wood, bringing out and driving away all those dark and unsavory accidents that are contrary to the nature of fire. Finally, heating up and enkindling the wood from outside, the fire transforms the wood into itself, rendering the wood as beautiful as the fire is.”

It is only after being stripped of all that I am inside that I am finally able to be completely consumed with Your fire, O Lord. Then I am made perfect as my heavenly Father is perfect. Only then am I able to be transformed from a worthless piece of wood into a magnificent, glorious, all-consuming fire. Only then can I radiate Your light for Your people to see. Only then can I radiate the warmth of Your presence.


Tuesday, February 07, 2023

Jesus Is Waiting For Us To Return To Him


As I enter the tiny, darkened church, I can see the Tabernacle on the Altar. The church is my body and the tabernacle my soul. Drawing nearer to the Tabernacle, I take the key and open it.

As your Eucharistic Body is exposed, your presence being brighter than the sun, plunges me into pitch-black darkness. I know you're there, somewhere in that black night within my soul. I find you! We throw our arms around each other in a tight embrace!

But what is this? My chest is covered with warm dampness. You're bleeding, my Lord! Your chest is covered in blood and now I am covered in your blood as well. I did this to you, Jesus. That spear pierced your precious and holy heart because of my sins.

You weep.

You weep tears of sorrow because you and I have been separated for so long because of my sins. You also weep tears of joy because I have returned to you and we grip to each other in a locked embrace.


Should Women Veil At Mass?



Should I Mantilla?


The 1983 Code of Canon Law, currently in force, does not contain a requirement that women cover their head in church. As Cardinal Burke, Prefect of the Supreme Apostolic Signatura, stated in a private letter: "The wearing of a chapel veil for women is not required when women assist at the Holy Mass according to the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite. It is, however, the expectation that women who assist at the Mass according to the Extraordinary Form cover their heads, as was the practice at the time that the 1962 Missale Romanum was in force. It is not, however, a sin to participate in the Holy Mass according to the Extraordinary Form without a veil."


Why Do Catholic Women Wear The Mantilla?


Rejecting the “culture of cool”

On any given Sunday at any Catholic church in the US, UK, Canada, Australia or New Zealand, one is likely to see women and girls dressed in halter-necks, strapless dresses, shorts, super-tight jeans, and mini-skirts. Depending on the weather, one might also find flip-flops or ugg boots. In our parish, the extraordinary ministers sometimes choose to hand out communion in their sneakers, velour tracksuits and the occasional fanny-pack.

What does this say about the church? What does this say about our faith?

The reason we no longer dress well for mass is the same reason that 90% of US Catholics don’t bother to show up for mass at all: it just isn’t that important to us anymore.

Making an effort for love of God

Dressing well for mass is an external manifestation of the belief that what we are doing is important: its says that we care. It is representative of the respect we have for the other members of our parish. More importantly, however, it is also a sign of our respect for God in the Blessed Sacrament.

The same reasoning applies to the mantilla. It isn’t mandatory for us to veil. But we can if we want to. This applies to the novus ordo as much as it does to the extraordinary form. And if we truly believe that Christ is actually present before us in the Eucharist, then why wouldn’t we?

The importance of external acts of faith

External acts can orient as well as express our inner thoughts and disposition. This is why our Mass (in both forms) is so rich in ritual and posture. These “externals” help keep our minds where they should be - on the mass and on Our Lord in the Eucharist. Veiling can do the same.

Ask yourself, why it is that brides still wear veils on their wedding day? One reason is that the veil indicates the solemnity of the occasion. It is a reminder that - for her - this day is unlike any other. It is also a physical sign of the gift of self that she intends to make through the Sacrament of Marriage. Both of these reasons (whether conscious or not) transform the bride’s veiling from being purely about the aesthetics into something else. Although she is the center of attention, her choice of garment, color and veil sends a message to those around her: “when you look at me and see my veil, remember that I am here to participate in something greater and bigger than myself.”

Some women choose to veil in church for the same reasons. The veil is a reminder that this place and moment in time is unlike any other and should be observed as such. It is also a sign of the spiritual gift of self that the woman intends to make to Our Lord during the mass and as she prays before the tabernacle.

In imitation of Mary

Other women choose to veil in imitation of the Blessed Virgin. They seek to follow her example of humility, modesty and purity - as well as the Jewish custom of covering one’s head - when they are near our Lord in the Tabernacle.

Why do I veil?

I veil because it matters to me that I am before God. I veil as an external manifestation of my belief that Christ is really present in the Eucharist. I veil because it helps me to be more reverent. I veil as an act of humility before God. I veil because I believe. I veil because I care.