The Church of History

Of all the “churches” calling themselves “Christian,” can any one of them irrefutably claim to be the Church founded by Jesus Christ? Does any conform to the clear, precise terms by which this Church of Christ is described in Holy Scripture: “the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Tim.3:15); or the “One Body” of which St. Paul repeatedly speaks (Rom.12:4-5; 1 Cor.10:17; 1 Cor.12:12-20; etc.); or the “Kingdom of Heaven” of the synoptic Gospels, and the “Kingdom of God” of Saint John’s? Does any one of them insist that those who fail to hear its decrees are to be treated as “the heathen and publican” (Matt.18:17)?

Yes, there is such a One True Church that meets all these descriptive requirements. The question is, which one is it?

Read more at The Church of History

Father Wilfredo Comellas, My Good Friend, RIP

Rev. Fr. Wilfredo Comellas

Rev. Fr. Wilfredo Comellas


[This obituary is from]

Reverend Wilfredo T. Comellas, 49, died Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013 at Ochsner St. Anne General Hospital, Raceland, La., after an illness.Father Comellas, son of Wilfredo Tomas and the late Justa A. Comellas, was born in Havana, Cuba, on April 16, 1964. His father, Wilfredo Tomas, a political prisoner of the communist government, was set free in 1971 and brought his family to the United States as part of the Cuban Freedom Flight Program. Father Comellas received his early education at St. Joan of Arc School, Jackson Heights, N.Y., and graduated from St. John’s Preparatory School, Astoria, N.Y. He then entered a two-year novitiate program with the Legion of Christ in Cheshire, Conn. He completed a degree in philosophy at Holy Apostles Seminary, Cromwell, Conn. Father graduated from St. John’s University, N.Y., with a B.A. in 1998 and completed his studies for the priesthood at Immaculate Conception Seminary at Seton Hall University, Orange, N.J., receiving his Master of Arts degree.He was ordained to the priesthood on June 28, 2003, in St. Peter’s Cathedral, Scranton, by the Most Rev. James C. Timlin, D.D., Bishop Emeritus of Scranton.

Father Comellas was assigned as assistant pastor at St. Ann’s Parish, Tobyhanna, with an additional assignment to the Hispanic Apostolate at Nativity of Our Lord Church, Scranton. Father was then appointed assistant pastor at Most Precious Blood Church, Hazleton, where he was later appointed administrator on Dec. 29, 2008. Father served as assistant pastor at St. Aloysius and St. Casimir, Wilkes-Barre, and Exaltation of the Holy Cross, Hanover Twp.

On Jan. 1, 2010, Father requested permission to serve in the Diocese of Houma-Thibodaux, La. He served there as chaplain of the Most Blessed Sacrament Faith Community, Gibson, La., and celebrated the traditional Latin Rite Mass for the Dominican Nuns of the Monastery of the Heart of Jesus in Lockport, La. In September 2011 he also began teaching theology at Holy Savior School in Lockport.

Father Comellas was instrumental in establishing the Latin Mass congregation on the North Shore at Sacred Heart of Jesus Church in Lacombe, La., in the Archdiocese of New Orleans, where Father Comellas also served as the chairman of Mysterium Fidei Mass Society.

He is survived by his father, Wilfredo Tomas Comellas Sr.; a brother, Leo M. Comellas; aunts and many cousins.

He was also preceded in death by his mother, Justa A. Comellas.

The wake will take place at the Chapel of the Dominican Monastery of the Heart of Jesus, Lockport, La., on Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013, beginning at 5 p.m. with Solemn Vespers. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Thursday, Nov. 14, 2013, at 11 a.m. at Holy Savior Church, Lockport, La. Interment will be in Holy Savior Parish Cemetery.

A memorial Mass will be celebrated on Monday, Dec. 2, 2013, at 7 p.m. by His Excellency, the Most Rev. Joseph C. Bambera, D.D., J.C.L., Bishop of Scranton, at St. Ann’s Church, Tobyhanna.

‘Sentimental Theology’ and ‘Faith is a Gift’

In this video, Michael Voris presents some good thoughts on the subject of sentimental theology. There are two points here where he appears to have borrowed from Saint Benedict Center’s founders. (Note that I do not say he borrowed, but “appears to have” done so.) First is the name itself, which was the title of an article by Dr. Fakhri Maluf (later Brother Francis, M.I.C.M.) published in the September 1947 issue of From the Housetops. That article may be read here: Sentimental Theology. There is another article that explains the history surrounding its publication: Sentimental Theology Revisited.

Second is Mr. Voris’ correct series of observations about the much abused statement, “Faith is a gift.” That, too is the title of an article by one of our Founders, Father Feeney himself, who also points out the need for a gift to be not merely offered, but also accepted. Father Feeney’s article, Faith is a Gift, is on our web site, too.

Decision 2012, a Sonnet

The American people have a choice
In this our solemn quadrennial mess:
Socialist one, pro-abortion, smooth voice
Or number two, pro-abort, L-D-S.
The Evil Party loves contraception,
Makes it the role of employer to pay.
The Stupid Party has this conception:
Onanism’s great the free market way.
Each ticket boasts a Roman Catholic veep.
(Papistical votes ought not to be missed.)
One’s crude, gaffe-prone, a shadow from the deep.
Veep two is Randian, Objectivist.
     With blessings like these in democracy,
     I’ll take a good old Catholic Monarchy.

Monologue with a Madman

Some months back, I received a telephone call from a sedevacantist madman who challenged me to a debate on whether Pope Benedict XVI is the pope. This individual should know that debates are not the way we do our apostolate. I have nothing against debating, but we engage in other apostolates that take up our time, I believe, more profitably: publishing, street evangelism, our school, night classes here at the Center, putting on conferences, various youth apostolates, public outreach to spread the traditional Mass, and giving talks on a Catholic America.

Besides, I am of the opinion that debating the undebatable is not a prudent thing. Debating whether the pope is the pope is like debating the wetness of water, the heat of the sun, or the fourness of two plus two.

Scripture admonishes us to “Talk not much with a fool, and go not with him that hath no sense” (Ecclus. 22:14). This man fits the description. Continue reading

I’m Available

Brother André Marie is available to speak to groups on various topics of Catholic interest: Catholic Dogma, Catholic America, Marian consecration, evangelism, prayer, vocations and states in life, etc. Contact Saint Benedict Center to arrange a presentation.

I can travel virtually anywhere, as long as my expenses are covered. If your parish, men’s group, sodality, or conference would like a Catholic speaker, give us a call.

Conserving Something or Other

[Originally published on June 16, 2009]

Over at Taki’s Magazine, Charles Coulombe playfully takes readers on a fast-paced romp through the unfamiliar (for most people) political spectrum of what is called “Paleoconservatism.” His article, The Old Paleos and the New, seeks to explain the contrasts and often bizarre alliances within this recently-coined label. Continue reading

Saint Benedict Center Will Host Papal Knight at Conference

The theme of this year’s conference will be Right and Freedom: Catholic Considerations on Misused Concepts.

Included in the list of speakers is author, papal historian, and lecturer, Charles A. Coulombe, K.C.S.S. By order of Pope John Paul II, Mr. Coulombe was created a Knight Commander of the Order of St. Sylvester for his services rendered to the Holy See. Author of the chart-climbing The Pope’s Legion, and Puritan’s Empire: A Catholic Perspective on American History, Coulombe is recognized internationally for his in-depth knowledge of Vatican politics and the influence of Catholicism in America and Europe. His audiences regularly range from graduate students at Oxford University, England to the New Mexico Military Institute, from which he graduated. His international articles have appeared in the New Oxford Review, National Catholic Register, American Thinker, Los Angeles Catholic Mission, Monarchy Canada, and The Irish Democrat.

Read the full press release here. Learn more about the conference here.

Here is a YouTube video of Mr. Coulombe speaking on one of his favorite subjects, monarchy:


Delivering What We Have Received

(Originally  published on June 16, 2009)

We are still in what used to be the Octave of Corpus Christi. Even though this octave was done away with in the 1962 rubrics, its ghost still lurks about the liturgy. We will, this Friday, have the feast of the Sacred Heart, whose placement was determined by its relation to the octave. What follows are some considerations on the Epistle for Corpus Christi (I Cor. 11:23-39). It is not an in-depth reading or scholarly exegesis. These are merely some meditations I offer for your consideration. Continue reading

The Better Part: The Religious or Priestly Vocation

(This was written in preparation for a series of conferences on vocations and states in life that I gave at Saint Benedict Center in the Spring of 2005. Please see the end of this piece for a small table of contents with links to the other conferences.)

In the previous conference, we introduced the general subject of states in life. We said that the importance of choosing the right state in life, which we call a “secondary vocation” has to do with the fact that your primary vocation — to the life of grace here and of glory hereafter — is very much related to it. We talked about the teaching of St. Alphonsus and others that your salvation has very much to do with choosing that state in life that God had already chosen for you from all eternity. We gave an overview of the four states in life and made the point that, contrary to popular belief, discerning your vocation is not very difficult. Continue reading

What Happened in the Tomb?

[We’re posting this at a liturgically inopportune time. It’s a matter of scheduling. Read it after the Easter Vigil, if you will.]

Every year around Holy Week, the refuse that forms America’s popular reading material comes out with a volley of blasphemies against our Lord’s holy Resurrection. Citing one or another perfidious “noted scholar,” the glossy-covered journals that accost us at the checkout counter vie with one another to see who can pervert the populace with greater contempt for the divine. These reheated leftovers from last year’s editions would be laughable in their dogmatic adherence to pseudoscientific “scholarship,” but we dare not laugh at the offense against our Savior. Continue reading

The Hands of the King

(Originally published on June 25, 2009)

The comical reaction I got from a television anchor may never leave my memory. When I told her that the people who lived under King Saint Louis IX of France were freer than we are now in America, she looked like the proverbial deer in the headlights. If you are a Monarchist, or a “monsymp,” you have probably gotten similar reactions when a banal conversation about current events terminates in a statement challenging the fundamental and flawed presuppositions of modernity. Continue reading

American Capitalism Gone With a Whimper

(Originally published on May 30, 2009)

From a Russian blogger comes a stinging critique of America under President Obama. Stanislav Mishin originally published this on his blog, Mat Rodina, but I’ve linked to Pravda’s reprint of it (the printer-friendly version, to spare you some grossly immodest ads).

Those who don’t think we’re living in a socialist oligarchy might want to look at this outsider’s view. A few lines are worth reproducing here: Continue reading

Something Real Men Must Know, on Chivalry

A friend sent me this, and I thought it worth sharing. All young men considering Holy Matrimony should keep this in mind for that time when they engage in Christian Courtship. Married men, and even celibates, should also know this, too. In the realm of religious devotion, there is a Lady worth dying for. In the ages of faith, She was both the object of Chivalric veneration, and the ideal of the lady.

Chivalry: Not all girls like it. Just the ones worth dying for.

My Own Notre Dame

I went to a school run by the Congregation of the Holy Cross, Holy Cross School. The brothers there are part of that same Congregation still affiliated with Notre Dame. We even had the same fight song, the euphonium part to which goes through my mind any time I hear the tune mentioned, so often did I play it. It is because of this background, by the way, that I took the name I did in religion, after Saint André Bessette, a Holy Cross Brother from Montreal, Canada. Continue reading

The Chair of Unity Octave

Today begins the traditional Chair of Unity octave, originally planned to last from the feast of Saint Peter’s Chair at Rome until the feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul on January 25. The devotion has evolved into the “Week of Prayer,” since the removal from the calendar of the feast that opened the octave. But in the 1962 rubrics, a priest may offer the votive Mass of Saint Peter’s Chair at Rome (which we had this morning), so we still have our octave in the traditional rite. Readers may find an inelegant but useful PDF file with the appropriate prayers. Regarding these prayers, be it observed that they are not vague requests for an undefined unity, but explicit petitions for the conversion of all (baptized and non) to Catholic faith and unity under the Supreme Pontiff, the Bishop of Rome and Successor of Saint Peter.

With the conversion to Rome of certain Anglican groups finally a reality thanks to Anglicanorum Coetibus, the octave takes on a fresh luster. In the third day of the octave, we pray for the conversion of all Anglicans. Besides that, Father Paul of Graymoor developed this devotion while yet an Anglican. His subsequent conversion and founding of a Catholic religious order proved that, at least in his case, the prayers worked.

See also: