Monthly Archives: October 2010

Hymn to St. Anthony of Padua: “Si Quaeris Miracula”

Here’s another goodie from one of Fr. Lasance’s old prayerbooks, Visits to Jesus in the Tabernacle

It’s called “The Responsory of St. Anthony of Padua” and apparently used to be part of an indulgenced prayer. I don’t know if the translation was by Fr. Lasance or by somebody else. But it’s cool to see something a bit more polite than “Tony, Tony, turn around”… heh!

Si quaeris miracula,
Mors, error, calamitas,
Daemon, lepra fugiunt,
Aegri surgunt sani.

If then you ask for miracles,
Death, error, all calamities,
The leprosy, and demons, fly
And health succeeds infirmities.

Cedunt mare, vincula;
Membra resque perditas
Petunt et accipiunt
Juvenes et cani.

The sea obeys, and fetters break;
And lifeless limbs thou dost restore;
While treasures lost are found again,
When young or old thine aid implore.

Pereunt pericula,
Cessat et necessitas;
Narrent hi, qui sentiunt,
Dicant Paduani.

All dangers vanish at thy prayer,
And direst need doth quickly flee;
Let those who know, thy power proclaim,
Let Paduans say, “These are of thee.”


Gloria Patri et Filio,
Et Spiritui Sancto.

To Father, Son, may glory be,
And Holy Ghost, eternally.


Apparently, this is a pretty popular song and part of St. Anthony’s Office, too. It was written by Fra Giuliano da Spira. There are a ton of versions up on YouTube!

Gregorian chant version, single male singer. Meant for learning.
More vivacious Gregorian chant version, recorded in an Italian church. I like this one very much.
Singing both this and another Office song, at Padua, at the end of a procession of the saint’s relics.
Polyphonic version with organ.
Very lovely hymn version with a different Italian translation. (Starts at 1:39.)
Hymn version in Spanish from Palencia, Spain, female cantor lead.

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Jesu, Nostra Refectio: Hymn from the old Office for Corpus Christi

CMAA last week posted an old edition of Cantus Selecti (Selected Chants). It’s a very interesting book, with many chant hymns I’d never seen before.

Jesu, nostra refectio,
Panis, potus fidelium;
Mel, melos, jubilatio
Cordis, oris, et aurium.

Jesus, our refreshment,
Bread, drink of the faithful;
Honey, melody, jubilation
Of the heart, the mouth, and the ear.

Quae te vicit clementia,
Ut nos in hace miseria
Carne cibares propria,
Imis jungens caelestia.

What clemency conquered you,
So that to us in bitter misery,
You feed your own flesh,
Linking us to highest Heaven?

UPDATE: Found something wrong with my translation of the second verse and corrected it. Bah, I am bad at this.

Also, here’s a spun out version from one of Fr. Lasance’s old prayerbooks, Visits to Jesus in the Tabernacle. I don’t know if it’s by him or somebody else.:

Jesus, the Meat and Drink indeed
That bids Thine own rejoice,
Sweetness and mirth and melody
Of heart and soul and voice;
What mercy bends Thee, Lord, to feed
Man in his misery
With Thine own flesh, the Bread of Heaven,
Brought near to such as we?

Our ransomer and Ransom Thou,
Our Banquet, too, Thou art;
Thou who dost heal our soul’s disease,
Joy be Thou of our heart.
Thou Who dost give us here foretaste,
So sweet, of joys to be,
Give us in our dear Fatherland
Fruition full of Thee.

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Kuragehime: Bosom Buddies with More Geek Cred.

If the main character of Bosom Buddies had been a geeky young jellyfish fan, and the apartment building had been a Slan Shack full of female fans with fairly serious psych problems, and Tom Hanks had been replaced by Shaun Cassidy and had more issues, it would have been Kuragehime (Jellyfish Princess).

This show has a lot of issues. A lot. A lot a lot. But I suspect that anybody who’s experienced post-college life will relate to this a little.

UPDATE: I probably ought to point out that, like a lot of shows for post-college kids, there’s a certain amount of casual mention of sexual subjects. The main female characters aren’t in favor of this; in fact, they point out that it’s the number one subject you shouldn’t bring up around them. But since they’re living in a comedy with such a strange premise, I don’t know how far things will go. (Though I don’t see how it could stay a funny premise if chastity isn’t maintained.)

UPDATED UPDATE: Funimation is streaming Kuragehime at their sight with English subtitles and everything, under the name Jellyfish Princess. Free, legal, licensed, etc.

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One of the Amusing Things about Tolkien

The man delights in using “poetic expressions”, and making them turn out to be literal. Again and again, he’ll throw in something arty in the way of description, which then it turns out to be an actual event in the story. Dreams turn out to be messages from the Valar or visions of historical events. When somebody muses that it’s as if somebody knows one’s thoughts, it’s probably because the guy’s got a bit of telepathy.

This is a very subtle effect, most visible to people who’ve read the Silmarillion. But it probably gave Tolkien a lot of satisfaction, as well as giving hidden bones to the tale.

One of the things a lot of people miss is Tolkien’s use of the word “chant”. When one listens to Tolkien’s recordings of himself reading selections from his books, you discover that he didn’t mean “sing” or “recite poetry”. He meant his own Elven version of Gregorian chant. So when he has Aragorn chant a song and then explain that it’s in the mode ann-thennath, he does so in the same way a Gregorian chant guy would etalk about a psalm in Mode IV, a prayer chanted in the solemn tone, or any of these sorts of things.

When I was younger, I have to admit that this realization rather baffled and annoyed me. But chant does have a sort of timeless non-hurry that does make it seem logical for elves.

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Extensive Ernest Borgnine Interview!

There’s tons of good stories in this interview with Ernest Borgnine over at AICN. There’s even some soundfile excerpts from the interview so you can listen to that unmistakable voice.

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Joseph Ratzinger. King Prof.

From his recent letter to all Catholic seminarians:

I can only plead with you, “Be committed to your studies! Take advantage of your years of study! You will not regret it.”

Certainly, the subjects which you are studying can often seem far removed from the practice of the Christian life and the pastoral ministry. Yet it is completely mistaken to start questioning their practical value by asking, “Will this be helpful to me in the future? Will it be practically or pastorally useful?”

The point is not simply to learn evidently useful things, but to understand and appreciate the internal structure of the faith as a whole; so that it can become a response to people’s questions, which on the surface change from one generation to another, yet ultimately remain the same. For this reason it is important to move beyond the changing questions of the moment in order to grasp the real questions, and so to understand how the answers are real answers.

It is important to have a thorough knowledge of sacred Scripture as a whole, in its unity as the Old and the New Testaments: the shaping of texts, their literary characteristics, the process by which they came to form the canon of sacred books, their dynamic inner unity, a unity which may not be immediately apparent but which in fact gives the individual texts their full meaning.

It is important to be familiar with the Fathers and the great Councils in which the Church appropriated, through faith-filled reflection, the essential statements of Scripture. I could easily go on.

What we call dogmatic theology is the understanding of the individual contents of the faith in their unity, indeed, in their ultimate simplicity: each single element is, in the end, only an unfolding of our faith in the one God who has revealed himself to us and continues to do so. I do not need to point out the importance of knowing the essential issues of moral theology and Catholic social teaching. The importance nowadays of ecumenical theology, and of a knowledge of the different Christian communities, is obvious; as is the need for a basic introduction to the great religions, to say nothing of philosophy: the understanding of that human process of questioning and searching to which faith seeks to respond.

But you should also learn to understand and – dare I say it – to love canon law, appreciating how necessary it is and valuing its practical applications. A society without law would be a society without rights. Law is the condition of love.

I will not go on with this list, but I simply say once more: love the study of theology, and carry it out in the clear realization that theology is anchored in the living community of the Church, which, with her authority, is not the antithesis of theological science but its presupposition. Cut off from the believing Church, theology would cease to be itself and instead it would become a medley of different disciplines lacking inner unity.

Your years in the seminary should also be a time of growth in human maturity. It is important for the priest, who is called to accompany others through the journey of life up to the threshold of death, to have the right balance of heart and mind, reason and feeling, body and soul….

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Joseph Ratzinger. King Geek.

Only from the mind of Joseph Ratzinger — looking to the future as much as the present, absolutely sure of his life plans despite living in the Third Reich in the middle of brutal war, and not at all concerned at the social fallout of telling them to others. :)

From his recent letter to all seminarians:

When in December 1944 I was drafted for military service, the company commander asked each of us what we planned to do in the future. I answered that I wanted to become a Catholic priest. The lieutenant replied: “Then you ought to look for something else. In the new Germany priests are no longer needed.” I knew that this “new Germany” was already coming to an end, and that, after the enormous devastation which that madness had brought upon the country, priests would be needed more than ever.

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Ancient Technese Secret

Hey, this is nifty! Courtesy of a nice commenter over at Chizumatic, a way to look at the built-in stats for your own cable modem with your own normal browser. Just type in this URL:

All of you techies who already knew this, just ignore this post.

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Rosaries Around the Neck in European Paintings

Paternoster Row lady’s blog had an old post about this. But this summer, she added some better links, as the zooming technology employed by Europe’s great museums has improved.

At the Prado, around the neck of Federico Gonzaga, duke of Mantua and kinsman of St. Aloysius Gonzaga.

Necklaces that may or may not be Rosaries or chaplets for prayer.

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Another Old Fave Fanficcer Goes Pro

Well, I remember back when she took her XF fics off the Web, so I’m happy to find out that she really did get published. Under her own name, Paula Graves. She’s writing suspense/mystery romances for Harlequin. In fact, she’s written something like eight.

I’d link and stuff, but obviously she’s not really publicizing her fandom roots. (And I understand that.) But I surely didn’t know she had books out, so I’m sure other people might like to know too. She can write, and I was afraid I’d never hear of her again.

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Cryoburn by Lois McMaster Bujold

Cryoburn, the first new Vorkosigan book since 2002’s Diplomatic Immunity, is one of the best, if you like a fast-paced mystery and action plot, science-fictional extrapolation, funny happenings, interesting characters, and a satisfying ending. It takes place on a world that specializes in cryo-freezing the dead — or even the living but ill — to the point that the dead outnumber the living. People joke about Chicago dead having a vote, but these ones really do have proxies. It is truly a democracy of the dead. But human nature being what it is, somebody has found a way to abuse even this morbid system. And Miles Vorkosigan being the man he is, of course gets wind of it and starts using his Emperor-given power to meddle. :)

However, this book is set ten years after Miles’ and Ekaterin’s wedding. Long-time readers of the series may recall that Bujold has long predicted and promised and foreshadowed certain events. This is the book where those events come to pass. Do not say I didn’t warn you.

If you’ve never read the series before this, this is still a good book to start with. Certain revelations won’t be as exciting to you; but I can assure you that with Bujold, reading from the back end of the series doesn’t stop you from being startled by what happened earlier. She really does believe in making each book stand alone.

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Pat McIntosh – Mysteries Set in Medieval Scotland

I know there are forty thousand zillion mystery series with historical settings these days, and a good chunk of them (thanks to Ellis Peters’ Cadfael) are medieval ones. But as a medieval history and mystery buff, I gotta say that a lot of medieval mystery series are either repulsive, or silly and wrong. I tend to like the ones that are more about the time and the people, and less about demonstrating the superiority of the modern world and/or the author’s political views. And then, they also have to be good mysteries….

So when I delved into the remainders table at the bookstore, and came up with The Merchant’s Mark, I was a bit worried; but I liked the idea of a body in a barrel. However, when I opened the book, I found the denizens discussing the amenities of a set of rooms. When the owner gently asked prospective tenants not to use the garderobe upstairs because they weren’t sure exactly where the shaft led, I found myself totally believing that I was in medieval/Renaissance Scotland. :)

Gil Cunningham is a lawyer from Glasgow, who’s about to get married to a prosperous French tradesman’s daughter. So he needs money and more security in his trade, in order to support a household. But when a small investment in Caxton books from the Low Countries brings him nothing but a body in a barrel, he finds himself needing to travel through half of Scotland, trying to save his merchant partner from being hanged. Meanwhile, his sister Kate and his fiancee Alys investigate what happened with the barrel in Glasgow, and find danger coming to them.

This was a good book. There was grue, but not too much. There was drama, but there was comedy. Interesting things occurred, and it wasn’t all gritty or blah. Poetry was quoted. Mysterious conspiracies were ferreted out. Historical figures showed up, but went away before they took over the book or turned into Mary Sues. Meanwhile, the characters both dealt with the mystery and carried on with their lives. Medieval people acted both like real people and like medievals. Both men and women were given great diversity of personality. It was the perfect tale for a sunny, chilly October afternoon.

Now, this does have Roslyn in it, and yes, there’s Templar and Masonic stuff that shows up. But the author actually just refers to it, figuring that you’ve already heard all this stuff and don’t need to be hit over the head. There’s no stupid Mary Magdalene or crazed conspiracy stuff here.

OTOH, McIntosh used to be a fantasy writer, and isn’t afraid to revive the old alliance of mystery stories and the uncanny. It doesn’t affect the murder puzzle; but it adds a very Scottish twist to the tale.

This was the third book in the series, which currently stands at seven. I mean to look for all the rest.


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Rachel Lucas’ Trip to Warsaw

Rachel Lucas is finally back blogging, and completes last summer’s travelogue of her trip to Poland, with a look at the beauties and sad past of Warsaw. It’s also interesting to see these things through the eyes of an American expatriate, as opposed to somebody who’s either from Europe or going straight home to the US after a week or two.

For those of you who don’t know Lucas’ work, you want to read all her “Hillbilly Travelogues”. (Still unconvinced that Texas hills count to make you a hillbilly.) I will warn you that the Amsterdam one is not at all worksafe, and the Auschwitz one will make you cry.

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La Virgen de la Candelaria Statue Went Home Yesterday

With all the miners rescued and all the rescue workers back on the surface, the Archbishop of Copiapo sent the diocese’s tiny miraculous statue of Our Lady of Candlemas back to its home at the shrine church yesterday, October 14, in a procession all the way from the San Jose Mine to the church.

Here’s a video about the history of La Virgen de la Candelaria that shows the shrine church. You’ll see that the actual miraculous statue is about the size of a doll, whereas the newer statue that’s usually on floor level and hauled around in processions is lifesize. You’ll also see that the statue’s discoverer, Mariano Caro Inca, is now buried under the altar. You’ll also see the little chapel that he originally built to house the statue. This statue is also known as La China, with various reasons given for it.

Here’s a news video that shows the Santuario de la Candelaria church very clearly. You can see that it’s really a quite plain church in a workingman’s region, even though it is a shrine with a long history. This is from four months ago, before the mine accident, and shows the mayor denouncing recent thefts of votive offerings (symbols of thanks to God for prayers granted, put up in church by individuals). Of course the end of May is the dead of winter in Chile, so that’s why the winter coats on the mayor and the parish priest.

I like knowing they had a procession back from the mine. It closes things out nicely, in its way.

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