Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Pilgrimage to Rome 2017 (7) - Day 2

After Mass in the Church of Sant'Eustachio for the feast of All Saints, our pilgrims made their way up the Via della Dogana Vecchia to the Church of San Luigi dei Franchesi. This is another of the National Churches of Rome that we visited on the feast of All Saints. Having passed across the Piazza Navona we visited Santa Maria dell'Anima of the Germans and San Nicola dei Lorenesi and then passed down the Vicolo della Pace to enter the Teatro of Santa Maria della Pace, built under our friend Pope Sixtus IV della Rovere and completed under our dear friend Pope Alexander VII Chigi. Santa Maria dell'Anima
Santa Maria della Pace
We made our way down the way of Peace to the Via del Governo Vecchio, part of the old Via Papale, the main thoroughfare of Papal Rome, and down to the Chiesa Nuova, the new Church of Santa Maria in Vallicella, the home of the Oratorians and the tomb of St. Philip Neri.

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Pilgrimage to Rome 2017 (2) - Opening Mass in the Minerva

Meeting in the Vatican
Our pilgrimage to Rome works on several levels.  It is a visit to the tombs of the Apostles and the other Saints of Rome.  It is an occasion to spend time together in prayer as a group.  It is an opportunity to experience the sights, sounds and culture of Rome, to see with our own eyes our heritage as Catholics in living as well as in static form.  It is a journey to honour the See of Peter and Our Holy Father the Pope.  As a journey to experience the Catholic culture of Rome and to honour the Holy See, an important element of our pilgrimage is always to pay our respects to officials of the Holy See.  This year, a few of the pilgrims had the honour to begin our first day, just before Mass, with an audience with the Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Archbishop Arthur Roche.

Mass in the Minerva
The first Mass of the 2017 Catholic Heritage Association Pilgrimage to Rome took place in the Sacristy Chapel of the Basilica of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva, that is, the Basilica of Our Lady built over the ruins of the Temple of Minerva.  During our 2008 Pilgrimage we had the privilege of having Mass in the beautiful Capranica Chapel dedicated to the Holy Rosary (see here).  This year, continuing our quest 'boldly to go where few men have gone before,' we were granted an even greater privilege to have Mass in the small Chapel of Saint Catherine of Siena, which is the actual room in which Saint Catherine died, and which is to be found behind the wonderful Sacristy of the Basilica (see here), the site of at least two Papal Conclaves.

The Chapel was rebuilt on this site in 1637 on the initiative of Cardinal Antonio Barberini, using the original walls of the room in a nearby house where the Saint died in 1380.  The house itself is now the site of the Palazzo di Santa Chiara on the Via Santa Chiara and the space left by the room is now itself a Chapel (see here) called Santa Caterina da Siena in Transito.

The Cardinal also had the frescoes attributed to Antoniazzo Romano and his assistants placed in the Sacristy Chapel, which had originally had been in the left arm of the transept.  Over the Altar, the Crucifixion and the Saints, on the left wall, the Annunciation with Ss. Jerome and Onofrio, and on the right wall, the Resurrection with Ss. Lucy and Augustine.

The Altar was erected by Pope Benedict XIII, himself a Dominican who is buried in the Chapel of St. Dominic in the left hand transept of the Basilica, decorated by the Filippo Raguzzini on the instructions of the same Pope Benedict XIII.

Monday, 30 October 2017

Pilgrimage to Rome 2017 (1) - Opening Vespers and Benediction

The annual pilgrimage to Rome of the Catholic Heritage Association began this evening with Vespers of the Little Office of the Immaculate Conception and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.  The Little Office of the Immaculate Conception was, as usual, the thread of prayer that joined together the various visits and ceremonies of the Pilgrimage.  The Hours of the Little Office were recited during the course of each day of the Pilgrimage.

We returned this year to the Istituto Maria Santissima Bambina, where we had stayed in 2003. The Istituo is one of the most spectacular and memorable places to stay in Rome. The Catholic Heritage Association always favours religious houses as the base for international pilgrimages and was pleased to have the opportunity to return to the Istituto. The House is run by the Sisters of Charity of the Infant Mary, founded in Milan by Saints Vincenza Gerosa and Bartolomea Capitanio, both members of the Sodality of Our Lady. It is a modern building in a part of the medieval Leonine fortifications surrounding the Vatican and is on Vatican Extraterritorial property. The views from the fourth floor terrace are legendary.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

National Latin Mass Pilgrimage to Armagh 2017

To mark the 10th Anniversary of Summorum Pontificum the Catholic Heritage Association of Ireland made our second pilgrimage to St. Patrick's Cathedral, Armagh.  A report of the first pilgrimage can be read here.  It was a truly National Pilgrimage with members coming from Antrim, Armagh, Cavan, Clare, Cork, Donegal, Dublin, Galway, Kildare, Limerick, Louth, Meath, Monaghan, Wexford and Wicklow - the Four Provinces of Ireland all represented - to assist at Holy Mass and attend our Annual General Meeting held afterwards in the Synod Hall attached to the Cathedral.

However, one element of the pilgrimage above all made it a most blessed occasion, the presence of His Eminence Seán, Cardinal Brady, Archbishop Emeritus of Armagh, to celebrate the Mass.  In his homily, Cardinal Brady reminded the congregation that the Traditional Latin Mass had been the Mass of his Altar service, of his First Communion and Confirmation, and of his Ordination and his First Mass.  He also reminded us that this day, the feast of St. John the Baptist, was his own feast day.  Cardinal Brady is to attend the Consistory on 28th June with Our Holy Father, Pope Francis.  His Eminence was assisted by Fr. Aidan McCann, C.C., who was ordained in the Cathedral only two years ago.  It was a great privilege and joy for the members and friends of the Catholic Heritage Association to share so many grace-filled associations with Cardinal Brady and Fr. McCann and the Armagh Cathedral community.