Wednesday, June 27, 2012


It's late, I can't sleep so here is a short post about a topic I think about all too often.

A part of life is the inevitability of death. When we die do we still exist? One of the major themes in a person’s life is death, weather they realize it or not. 

God warns Adam and Eve not to partake from the tree of knowledge or they will surely die. In response to this, Satan convinces our first parents that no they will not die, but they will have knowledge and will be like Gods. Adam and Eve did not die physically that day, but spiritually. They wanted to choose for themselves what was right and what was wrong.

Death plays a heavy role in many of Shakespeare’s plays, one example is in Hamlet. After the death of his father, the king, Hamlet becomes consumed with the idea of death and wondering if death is required to understand life. This becomes evident in the famous “To Be or not To Be” soliloquy.
If we are to contemplate "being" such as Hamlet we can come to a better understanding of our essence.
There is an old saying "from the moment you are born you start to die". 

The most important day of our life is not our wedding day, or the day our children are born, no, the most important day of our lives will be the day we die. That is the day we will meet our maker and face judgement.

Our essence is not just our person, but also our soul. It is what defines us, but it is not our existence. For God, there is no distinction between His essence and existence. If essence and existence were the same thing we would be unable to conceive one without conceiving the other, but we are able to conceive essence by itself.

Pax Christi

Monday, June 25, 2012


Over the past few weeks I have been re-reading a book (Phenomenology of the Human Person by Robert Sokolowski) that has had a large impact in my intellectual growth and over all outlook towards life. I highly recommend this book if you like metaphysics. I wanted to share some thoughts on this book with you over the next few weeks.

Phenomenology of the Human Person
“ Two Ways of Saying I “

In the opening pages of Sokolowski’s book “ The Phenomenology of the human person”. The author hopes to engage into our own personal thought process by searching how syntax affects our experience, activity and the way we speak. Why do we speak the way that we do? Are the words we use applied in the proper context?
If my wife and I are having a disagreement and we both agree, “ok this isn’t working, how can we reason with each other?”  When we attempt to reason with each other we usually discover that one or the other (usually me) was not listening and understanding what was actually said. As rational animals, we are each agents of truth. Our personhood is where our rationality lies. Reason is what makes us persons. We achieve this by using the word “I” countless times a day. There is two ways to express the “I”. In an informational and a declarative use.  With the informative use we are naming ourselves as anything else we would want to talk about.For example: “ I am in the library crying”, I could have expressed this the same way by saying “Clayton is in the library crying” In the declarative use of the word “I”, they are not just statements or information but declaring oneself as a rational agent and person of truth. With the statement “ I must pay my bills”, I am declaring myself as acting rationally, it does not just inform but shows my personal agency. With declaratives something new is learned it is not just information. But it  brings ourselves into the equation. If I was to say, “ I know it is raining outside”, I could have just said, “It is raining outside”. This expresses that I am an agent of disclosure and that I have logic and verification. Declaratives capture the essence of ones selves.
Veracity can be explained as the impulse of truth, and the virtue of truthfulness in its proper cultivation.  Veracity is very close to rationality. Veracity is the truth of being an agent of truth. Our drive to reason and to know, it is our desire to know truth. We do not wake up one morning and declare “ I am going to search for the truth today” The search for truth is what makes us men. It is the essence of our conscious as each agent of truth experiences it. This is the abyss of our heart, of our very being. There is many ways to express oneself, not only by speaking out useless information, but also by declaring our very being.
Pax Christi

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Confirmation - Traditional Latin Rite 2012

Here are some photographs from Confirmation at Holy Family Parish in Vancouver BC on June.19. The Archdiocese is blessed to have a Shepherd such as His Grace Archbishop J.Michael Miller.

Confirmation, an Extraordinary Event.
            On Tuesday June.19/2012 His Grace Archbishop J. Michael Miller, CSB conferred the Holy Sacrament of confirmation in the Traditional Rite at Holy Family Parish in Vancouver.
 For most Catholic’s the beginning of the eternal journey with Jesus Christ begins with Baptism. The majority of which are usually to young to speak for themselves. Through the wonderful grace of God the Sacrament of Confirmation gives the confirmandi the opportunity to present themselves as followers of Christ.
His Grace assured the young people that courage and bravery is needed to spread the Gospel message to a world that is often indifferent, if not hostile to our Christian faith.

Excerpt from sermon: “ The world today needs brave men and women who know their faith and can explain it to others; those who stand up for what they believe in. It takes courage to follow Jesus, because the pressures to compromise are enormous. It is so easy just to follow the crowd and do what “ everybody else does”. But that is not the way of Jesus.”

Speaking to the confirmandi: “ tonight the gift of the Holy Spirit, first conferred on you at Baptism, now comes to strengthen you to live as witnesses of Christ and His Gospel.’
Each confirmandi kneels before the Archbishop as he imposes his hand over their head and anoints the forehead with Holy Chrism with these words “ signo te signo cruces et confirmo te chrismate salutis. In nominee Patris et Filio et Spiritus Sancti”
Which is:” I sign thee with the sign of the Cross, and I confirm thee with the chrism of salvation; in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost.”
The Archbishop will then gently strike each confirmand on the left cheek to symbolize that now they are a soldier for Christ and must be ready to endure suffering and persecution in a secular world that is opposed to the beauty and dignity of the Christian life. 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Sacred Heart

Holy Family Parish in Vancouver BC will be installing a hand-embroidered Sacred Heart onto the inner door of our parish Tabernacle. The Sacred Heart was made with leather covered with gold leaf, 2% gold metal threads, and silk threads. Also attached are garnets and freshwater pearls to signify the drops of blood and water which gushed forth from the Wound of His Sacred Heart, which was pierced on the cross.

Every time we open the tabernacle, His Sacred Heart will, in a sense, be opened, from which we will receive the Holy Eucharist. The image will be a reminder to every priest who celebrates Mass on our altar of the intimate connection between the Eucharist and Our Lord's Sacred Heart.

Many thanks to the parishioner who took the time to design and embroider it for us. May God reward you.

From Parish e-mail loop

Wednesday, June 6, 2012


On Friday, June 1, 7 pm, from the sanctuary of Holy Rosary Cathedral in Vancouver, Fr. Edward Danylo Evanko gave the performance of a lifetime as Fr. Damien in Aldyth Morris’ one-man play, DAMIEN. Guest organist Marc D’Anjou  performed C.M. Widor’s famous TOCCATA from Symphony #5, and the Redeemer Pacific Chamber Choir  performed a program of traditional Catholic music, including the DIES IRAE in its original Gregorian Chant. 

Apostle of Lepers
St. Damien of Molokai, known as the Apostle of Lepers, was canonized by Pope Benedict XVI in 2009. Ordained to the priesthood in 1864, he is most well known for his ministry to quarantined lepers on the Hawaiian island of Molokai where he eventually contracted leprosy and died. The body of this martyr of charity was eventually brought back to his native Belgium where he was hailed by the King as a national hero.

Here are a few stills from the performance.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Father Pablo Santa Maria

The Archdiocese of Vancouver ordained one man to the priesthood on May.26/2012. One week after his ordination he celebrated his First Solemn High Mass in the Extraordinary Form at Holy Family Parish.
Here are a few photos. (Double click on photos for slideshow)

Deo Gratias

Pater Noster - Fr.Brian McDonnell FSSP