“…[there was] a great and strong wind before the Lord over throwing the mountains, and breaking the rocks in pieces: the Lord is not in the wind, and after the wind an earthquake: the Lord is not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire: the Lord is not in the fire, and after the fire a whistling of a gentle air.” (3 Kings 19:11-12)
Tree plantings, Pagan Idols, feather headdresses, desecrated churches, police chasing faithful Catholics from the Vatican precincts while allowing anyone with face paint and maracas to do as they please anywhere they like…
…ah, what a blessed release we finally had today, as the Synod comes to a close and the Summorum Pontificum pilgrimage began.
This gathering of like-minded, tradition-loving Catholics is centered around a schedule of liturgical events in thanksgiving for Benedict XVI’s motu proprio. However, it is also an opportunity for those same people to share their love for the Traditions of our Church and the myriad ways in which each of them are individually called by the Holy Spirit to spread this love far and wide throughout the world.
So my morning was spent partially in attending a sort of conference with various speakers from the Catholic world, and partially in networking with these many other friends of Tradition. Full disclosure: I hate networking and I’m terrible at it. I can’t think of anything I enjoy doing less than boasting to perfect strangers about what I do.
But as I have mentioned before, this project is not merely about humbling myself before strangers on the street to give away these books, it’s also about fighting my own interior voice so that I can hear the still, small voice of the Holy Spirit…the “whistling of a gentle air.” And that voice required me to put myself forward, not for the sake of my own glory, but for the sake of His. Thy Kingdom come, Thy Will be done…
And in this gathering God sent to me exactly the people I needed to begin bringing this project to the next phase. An Italian publisher. A copyright lawyer. People from several countries wishing to translate this book into other languages. And already I see that these people are not merely meant to be useful toward achieving the ends of this project, but to be dear and lasting friends.
The evening was crowned with a Solemn High Mass at Santa Maria ad Martyres, better known to most people as the Pantheon. Yes, that Pantheon. The entire Mass, including the music, was celebrated by a group of canons from Hungary, in conjunction with the Juventutem group there. The choir sang the propers of the Mass according to 14th-and 15th-century Hungarian chant. It was truly a brief encounter with heaven on earth, and tears of gratitude flowed freely.
Tomorrow morning comes the event that I look forward to as the highlight of the entire trip: a procession of clergy and laity from the Cancelleria palace all the way to St. Peter’s Basilica, where a Pontifical Mass will be celebrated at the Altar of the Chair.
Pray for me that I don’t die of happiness.