Joseph Haydn’s Die Schöpfung (“The Creation”) Performed by Lisa Milne, Lucy Crowe, Werner Güra, Matthew Rose, Jonathan Beyer, The Netherlands Radio Choir & The Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic, Directed by John Nelson

“A famous oratorio at a famous location: … the Grote Kerk in Naarden. The Grote Kerk or Great Church is one of the oldest and most famous churches in The Netherlands.”

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“Modern Has Been Out”

So says Beyer Studio artist and president (whose work is pictured above) of “anything that smacks of the ’50, ’60s, ’70s,” Joseph Pronechen at National Catholic Register reports — Windows Into the Heavenly Realm: The New Renaissance of Stained Glass. He further said:

The Munich school windows retain popularity because they are so beautiful and mesh so well with the traditional church design that has completely taken over the last couple of decades. I used to have churches very modern above the Mason-Dixon line. All that has changed in the last 20 years. I have no plans for any churches not in the basilica style — many cruciform shape.

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Centuries Before Today’s Zairean Use Liturgy

“What inculturation actually must respect most of all, is a culture’s own Catholic tradition,” writes Claudio Salvucci, author of The Roman Rite in the Algonquian and Iroquoian Missions, offering “fascinating tidbits of information [that] give a tantalizing glimpse into how the medieval Roman liturgy was embraced by the Congolese court and its subjects” — Zairean? Or Sarum? The Forgotten Congolese Liturgy. Some excerpts:

The Kingdom of Kongo, founded in 1390, was first visited by Portuguese missionaries during the reign of King João I in 1491. Under his son, the pious Afonso I, Catholicism became the state religion, after which Kongo was duly recognized as a Catholic Kingdom by the Pope and the crowns of Europe. A Papal Bull of Pope Urban VIII even authorized the Capuchin missionaries to crown the Kings of Kongo according to the Catholic Rite of Coronation.

Anyone who uncritically transplants jaded European modernism into the minds of the indigenous Congolese might be surprised by that last fact. But historical accounts indicate that subsaharan Africans did not scorn the pomp and ceremony of the Baroque European liturgy—to the contrary, they seemed to have been quite eager participants in it….

We know that the Congolese church was suffragan to the See of Lisbon. But Lisbon’s liturgy is not even certain for this time period. Once the city was recaptured from the Moors in 1147, the Sarum Rite was established there by its first bishop: the English monk Gilbert of Hastings. Through the centuries, the Sarum Rite seems to have gradually declined until 1536 when Lisbon officially switched to the Roman Rite. But it’s unclear how that switch happened, and where the last holdouts were.

So in the 1490s and soon afterward–well before the Council of Trent and at the tail end of the medieval era–could the first missionaries from Lisbon and their successors have been celebrating the Sarum Rite, or perhaps a Sarum-influenced Roman Rite? Could Afonso’s son Henrique Kinu a Mvemba, who became a priest and then was consecrated a bishop by Leo X in 1518, have learned the liturgy?

Again, we don’t know, but these are historical possibilities. And by entertaining these possibilities, we are persuaded to abandon any facile stereotype of African primitivism, and wonder whether the court of Kongo might well have used a ritually complex medieval Ceremonial that made even today’s Latin Mass parishes look very bare and austere by comparison.

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The Atlantic Attack on the Rosary

Zelda Caldwell at Catholic News Agency reports — ‘The Atlantic’ publishes article on the rosary as symbol of far-right, violent extremism.

“Yes, the Rosary absolutely is an extremist symbol and a weapon,” agrees and amplifies Eric Sammans at Crisis Magazine here — Weapon of Choice.

“The Rosary is a weapon, but it does not have the goal of death,” bur rather “seeks to inflict eternal life on those it is directed toward,” Jack Bingham at LifeSite writes — The Atlantic downplays radical pro-abortion violence but calls the Holy Rosary ‘extremist’.

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Schrödinger’s Actress Should Be a Wake Up Call

“Reports of Anne Heche’s death rolled out in waves — from Friday morning through Sunday evening, depending on the media outlet — prompting some in the news industry to reexamine their nuanced definition of the word ‘dead’ and in some cases to reconsider policies on whether an obituary gets published while a subject remains on life support,” Los Angeles Times reports — When did Anne Heche die? Media are split in the definition of ‘dead’.

Let’s follow the science.

“With all the modern technology that exists today, one would think that determination of death should be a straightforward matter,” said Giuseppe Citerio, Professor of Anesthesia and Intensive Care at the Milano Bicocca University, School of Medicine and Surgery, Milan, Italy, European Society of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care reported five years ago — International variation on definition of brain death must be cleared up to restore public confidence. Said the doctor:

Despite it being more than 40 years since the concept of “brain death” was first introduced into clinical practice, many of the controversies that surround the determination of death by neurological criteria (DNC) have not been settled and this presents an opportunity for future research and education to clarify outstanding issues in order to reduce professional and public disquiet. A first step has been International guideline development for the determination of death, supported by WHO, but other steps are needed.

There is broad consensus, at least in the Western world, that human death is ultimately death of the brain, but debate continues over the way to demonstrate the ceasing of brain functions to satisfy a definition of DNC. Confusingly DNC can be legally defined in different countries in two different ways based on “whole” brain and “brainstem” criteria.

Four months ago, E. Christian Brugger at National Catholic Register wrote, “The debate over brain death has no easy answer but requires astute attentiveness to science, Church teaching and the sanctity of human life” — Living or Not Living? That Is the Question.

He argued “that there is reasonable doubt that all ventilated BD bodies are dead; where such doubt is present, moral certainty is lacking; in the absence of moral certainty, we ought to treat them as if they were alive unless and until such certainty has been reached.”

A decade ago, LifeSite reported on a not-uncommon case — Film on teen who awoke from coma before having organs harvested stirs ‘brain death’ debate. Said the father, “Those bandits in the white coats gave up too quickly, because they wanted an organ donor.”

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Murder in the I.C.U.

“Nurses who witnessed ‘brutal’ hospital COVID-19 treatment protocols kill patients paint a bleak picture of what is taking place in state and federally funded health care systems,” Matt McGregor at The Epoch Times reports — Nurses Who Left the Health Care System to Focus on Early Treatment Describe ‘Brutal’ COVID-19 Treatment Protocols.

“They’re horrific, and they’re all in lockstep,” said one nurse. “They will not consider protocols outside of what’s given to them by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and the NIH (National Institute of Health). And nobody is asking why.”

Asking why can get you fired, as this nurse, reporting what can only be described as murder, learned:

“The worst part of it was when the pulmonologists decided that unvaccinated patients would get seven days on the ventilator, then they would tell the families that nothing more could be done,” she said. “They would then terminally extubate these patients even when more could have been done.”

The nurse personally witnessed this, she said, with a 33-year-old mother of two children.

“She had been on ivermectin at home and was viewed as an anti-vax conspiracy theorist,” the nurse said.

Before the mother was terminally extubated and her status changed to “comfort care,” the nurse said she argued with hospital administrators for 12 hours.

She had asked the pulmonologist to consider running more tests, she said.

“It had been over a week since the last D-dimer, and this would have indicated whether fibrin in the bloodstream was increasing or decreasing,” the nurse explained. “The usual process with a known pulmonary embolism was to check every three days. There were more anticoagulant drugs and routes of administration that could have been utilized. Intravenous heparin is reversible. If they were willing to withdraw life support, why were they not willing to try something that could clear a circulatory impairment?”

In the end, the hospital won, she said.

“The mother died gasping for air while my hand was on her back,” she said. “I couldn’t believe it. I went to my manager and asked for an audit to be done on our coagulation times and pulmonary embolism treatment protocols. That got me booted from the ICU until I was fired.”

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American Political Prisoner Speaks

“I’ve noticed activity in the prison that makes me fearful for my own safety,’ said the foundress of America’s Frontline Doctors” in “a short statement from federal prison where she is serving a 60-day jail term for a misdemeanor count of entering the ‘restricted’ grounds of the Capitol building on January 6, 2021,” Patrick Delaney at LifeSite reports — Dr. Simone Gold says her ‘spirits are high’ as she endures solitary confinement for entering Capitol.

Solitary confinement for a misdemeanor. Where are you, A.C.L.U.?

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Ukrainian War Crimes

An American mercenary is quoted as saying that “it’s very difficult to teach the locals, ‘You have to treat these Russian prisoners of war ethically,'” we read in the 54th paragraph of this 55-paragraph NextShark article — ‘Things are very, very rarely black and white’: Ukraine volunteer Elliot Kim reflects on serving in Russo-Ukrainian War.

“Kim says something that he tried to communicate best was the global standards of war which were established during the Geneva Convention,” we read. “Not executing prisoners of war, for example, is a standard he tried to emphasize.”

The last paragraph reminds us that “President Biden recently pledged another $1 billion in security assistance to Ukraine on Monday, bringing the country’s commitment to a total of $9.8 billion.”

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Johann Sebastian Bach’s Magnificat in D Major Zsuzsi Tòth, Caroline Weynants, Kristen Witmer, Stefanie True, Victoria Cassano, Rachel Ambrose Evans, Daniel Elgersma, Jan Kullman, David Van Laar, Robert Buckland, Philippe Froeliger, David Lee, Geoffroy Buffière, Sabastian Myrus, Lionel Menuier & Vox Luminis, Directed by Lionel Menuier

Today’s Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary reading.

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Virgin of Quito, a.k.a. Virgin of the Apocalypse

The remarkable piece of public religious art first came to my attention with the end credits of the otherwise mediocre Proof of Life (2000) (see Exploring Ecuador – The Virgin of Quito and Proof of Life), posted here to counter these European abominations reported on by Daily Beast and Yahoo! News respectively — A Statue of a Sex Worker Is a Top Attraction in This German City and ‘An offence to God’: Hundreds sign petition to remove world’s tallest ceramic statue costing £80,000.

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