Fr. Bloomfield's Blog

I am a Roman Catholic Priest of the Archdiocese of Detroit, currently assigned to Divine Child Parish in Dearborn, Michigan. When I manage to keep the page updated, hopefully something interesting can be found here!

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Faith Seeking Understanding for November 20, 2005

My trip to California was very blessed; unfortunately, as you know, the day before I left, my first cousin Major Gerald M. Bloomfield II, USMC, was killed in action while flying his Super Cobra in a combat mission near Ramadi, Iraq. Thank you so much for your warm and generous outpouring of sympathy and prayers on his behalf and for our family. They mean a great deal to me, to my cousin, and to our family. Although these days are still difficult ones of mourning, they are made easier by your support. Thank you.

This week, our thoughts naturally turn to Thanksgiving Day. The first proclamation of Thanksgiving, given by President George Washington is an inspiring reminder of the reasons for this celebration. On October 3, 1789, President Washington established Thanksgiving, that “we may then all unite in rendering unto [God] our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; … for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed; for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enabled to establish constitutions of government for our safety and happiness … for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; … and, in general, for all the great and various favors which He has been pleased to confer upon us.” We also entreat God for His continued blessings upon us, our families, and our great nation.

Monday, November 21, is the celebration of the Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This day commemorates the day when Mary’s parents, Sts. Joachim and Anne, dedicated her to Yahweh in the Temple of Jerusalem when she was a young girl. There is no scriptural record of this event – it comes from the “apocryphal writings” of the early Church – but the Eastern Church has celebrated it since the 11th century. The greatest gift given to the world, our Lord Jesus Christ, comes through the cooperation of the Blessed Virgin Mary; we ought to be supremely grateful for her example and intercession this week in particular.

We celebrate the patron saint of Sacred Music on November 22, St. Cecilia. Little true history is known about this great virgin and martyr, but she was killed for the Faith sometime before the fourth century in Rome. She was buried in the catacombs of St. Callistus on the Appian Way, although her relics were transferred to the high altar of the church of St. Cecilia in Trastevere, where they remain today. Sacrosanctum Concilium, the Second Vatican Council’s Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, reminds us of the importance and value of Sacred Music in Chapter VI: “The musical tradition of the universal Church is a treasure of inestimable value, greater even than that of any other art. The main reason for this pre-eminence is that, as sacred song united to the words, it forms a necessary or integral part of the solemn liturgy” (SC, 112).

The Council continues: “Religious singing by the people is to be intelligently fostered so that in devotions and sacred exercises, as also during liturgical services, the voices of the faithful may ring out…” (SC, 118). It is vitally important that we read and understand the principles behind Sacred Music by reading Sacrosanctum Concilium and other Church relevant documents.

We also celebrate the feast of St. Clement I, Pope and Martyr, on Wednesday, November 23. Have a blessed and holy week, and a very happy Thanksgiving. God bless you all!