Sunday, May 26, 2013

Trinity Sunday

  • Mass: Benedicta sit sancta Trinitas atque indivisa Unitas. Sung Mass with our workhorse, the Missa de Angelis so the congregation can sing the Gloria and Credo if they want, with the Old Hundredth at the offertory, Schubert’s Ave Maria at Communion and the chant Deo gratias from True Confessions. The gist of Fr Matthew’s sermon: the Trinity shows that God is not infinite loneliness but infinite love.
  • Sermon by Fr Robert Hart.
  • Catholicism and Orthodoxy: Rusyn religious identity 75 and 100 years ago. Makes sense given the regionalism in much of the church’s history and especially in the East: grassroots folk traditional Catholicism. There was much non-faith based, pragmatic "flip flopping" back before 1920. My grandparents' worldview, and that of their peers was very insular. Their religion was "nas virnyj" - our Faith [naša vira/наша вера; naš virnyj means something like ‘our faithful’] - not viewed in terms of Catholicism or Orthodoxy. The clergy knew, but the average Joe or Mary didn't care until "nas virnyj" was challenged. My parents' generation was somewhat more aware of Catholicism and Orthodoxy as they were, for the most part, more worldly unless they grew up in a "patch" by a mine or a mill. Maybe. Po-našomu (‘po nahSHOmu’, like по-нашему, ‘po NAHshemu’, ‘our way’) church as its own thing, both, and neither exclusively, Catholic and/nor Orthodox, like the Melkites in Syria and Lebanon now. (The expression refers to the whole Rusyn culture: language and church.) Can anybody confirm that about East Slavic immigrants last century? After the schisms in America (East Slavs pushed out of the Catholic Church for no good reason about 75 and 100 years ago) and the Communist persecution of Catholics, certainly not true of Slavs now, such as the Ukrainian Catholic refugees I knew 30 years ago. As has been written elsewhere, unlike 100 years ago, the only russophile Rusyns now are the Rusyn-American majority, descended from ex-Catholics 100 years ago, of America’s ‘Russian’ Orthodox (the OCA).
  • The Orthodox and Western liberal fantasy about Celts. Vs. the Catholic historical reality of Ireland and Irish-Americans. The thread starts here and picks up here. I have no Irish ancestry that I know of. Marcella: I had no intention of accepting a discredited Victorian Protestant thesis about a pure ‘Celtic Church’ repackaged as ‘Orthodoxy’. Sounds like Western Rite Orthodoxy’s myth. And: There is a huge amount of research taking place today, none of which confirms the myth of the free-spirited, woman-friendly, environmentally concerned ‘Celtic church’. Surprised? Me neither. The Irish still have a sort of mascot status from the American left (to steal St Patrick’s Day parties), part of the left’s anything but the old America kick, as long as they’re deracinated/assimilated, having left the church for something more acceptable (or at least thumbing your nose at Rome) or believing the left’s made-up ancient Irish religious history.


  1. Charles Durning--one of my favorite character actors. One of the Greatest Generation. Requiescat in pace.

    1. Battle of the Bulge survivor; incredible story (taken prisoner and survived a firing squad).

    2. Durning is a delight in that Fifties romcom with Tim Robbins, Meg Ryan and Walter Matthau (as Albert Einstein) "IQ" (1994). Worth seeing if you haven't checked it out, John. Especially if you like Fifties cars.

  2. I am of Irish ancestry on my mom's side and have an educational background in medieval monasticism. When I first started studying, I was amazed at how many of the myths I grew up with turned out be bunk. I mean, the Irish monks were not the freethinking, anarchistic wizard-hippies that some made me want to believe. In fact, I was impressed with how much of an impact the Irish had on monasteries and schools on the continent (see Bobbio and Luxeuil Abbeys as well as Duns Scotus Eriugena). So much for the insular, separate "Church of Ireland."

    Unlike the "pride" that some show on St. Patrick's Day, the history of Irish monks filled me with a lot of pride for my ancestral home.


Leave comment