Cleansing Fire

Defending Truth and Tradition in the Roman Catholic Church

Colloquium – Interlude

June 25th, 2010, Promulgated by Gen

I realize it may be somewhat hard to grasp the scope of this Colloquium. You can only get a very slight realization of this thing’s immensity and sacredness from the photos I’ve posted here. To combat this, I’d like to talk about the various religious orders represented here.

  1. The Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter – This order, noted for its quest to restore the Traditional Latin Mass, has a strong presence here. There are, by my observation, at least 3 FSSP seminarians and at least 1 priest. The remarkable thing with these are that they are all young, joyful, happy, and passionate men. When was the last time you saw a young, solid, passionate priest aside from some of our recent ordinands? It’s a rare thing, and yet the oldest priest here at the Colloquium is probably 55. The liberals are dying off, and being replaced with young men who don’t care about the trash they need to wade through in order to bring reverence and sacredness back to every liturgy, be it Ordinary Form or Extraordinary Form.

    Fr. Pasley ( a diocesan priest) readying the altar for the Ordinary Form Latin Requiem Mass

  2. The Canons Regular of St. John Cantius – This order has three representatives. Fr. Frank Phillips, the founder of the order, is present along with two brothers, one of whom served as the music director at St. Anne Church prior to his entering the order four years ago. This order, like the FSSP, seeks to elevate the liturgy from off the dungheap of fetid and rotting error. Their main focus is the maintenance and administration of St. John Cantius Parish in Chicago. It is a real gem, one which should be considered one of the most brilliant and empowering success stories of the American Church. You can get more information on the order by visiting this link:
  3. The Spiritans – This is the order which founded Duquesne, and which maintains a strong presence on campus. I have seen one priest and one brother (?) who are quite active with the Colloquium. Again, they are both young. The brother (?) looks to be around 19 or 20, and the priest can’t be any older than 40. They both wear a very distinctive habit, which looks like a normal black cassock, plus a rather pronounced and pointed hood, which is worn in place of a biretta for liturgies. Their role on campus is undeniable – everywhere you look, there are young people who aren’t afraid to practice their Catholic faith. And these young people aren’t with the Colloquium – they’re just the summer students at the university.
  4. Diocesan priests – Several diocesan priests and seminarians are in attendance. I have met Fr. Pasley, a diocesan priest whose parish is 100% Tridentine. And the people love it. It has grown by leaps and bounds. I also met several young men who are in the formation/seminary process. These fellows were from New Orleans, Mobile, Virginia, Montana, and several other cities and states that I’m blanking on. They are all proudly wearing their cassocks, and those in the actual seminary (not just pre-seminary/doing theology and philosophy in college) are wearing their collars. What a beautiful statement this is. Our diocese would surely see an increase in vocations if our young men, our discerners, our seminarians, were all held up and given the support they deserve. When was the last time you saw one of our young men in a cassock and collar? There is a certain pride of fraternity when young men see eachother “looking the part,” as one of the pre-theology students said.
  5. Passionist Nuns – Perhaps the most moving sight of the Colloquium thus far came from one of these nuns. Let me preface this by saying that every nun at this Colloquium (and there are several) is wearing a habit. When I was walking back to my room the other day, I noticed one of these nuns sitting beside a young woman who had just finished her “chironomy” class. (That’s a course on how to direct Gregorian Chant.) Evidently, the girl was struggling with the very precise hand gestures, so the nun had volunteered to help. Sitting side by side on a bench, the nun took the girls hand into her own, and began to move it as they sang Kyrie XI together. It was a very moving sight to behold, seeing a nun acting as a nun ought to, with love and kindness, not just for the girl, but for the sacred music traditions of the Church. Below is the Kyrie they were singing together.

Hopefully this helps you appreciate the depth and breadth of the diversity we’re celebrating here in Pittsburgh. There is no need to watch what we say, because we’re all saying the same thing: We need to restore the sacred.

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3 Responses to “Colloquium – Interlude”

  1. I am so jealous. This is an amazingly blessed event! Our prayers remain with the Diocese of Rochester and the struggle and strife you all face.

    “The kingdom of heaven suffers much violence, and the violent are taking it by force.”

  2. Gen says:

    I would pay the tuition even if there weren’t any courses or choirs to join. The comradery and catholicity alone are valuable enough to make me plan on returning next year.

    Your comment is very much appreciated, Joe.

  3. Bernie says:

    It is so encouraging to read your reports on the Colloquium!

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