Sunday, March 5, 2017

Churches, Bishops and Socks, Oh My!!!

So I pretty much forgot about this blog until the other day and thought, I haven't posted anything in a year now.  So having thought of a post I was going to write a while ago and never did, here it is with some added thoughts:

Recently while reading a book on Old Catholics in the USA and also a few articles on the internet, I was wondering what ever happened to all these people?  Well some, like Archbishop Carfora, have passed on to eternal life.  But the bishops and priests, well lets be honest mostly bishops, who are still living....where did they all go?  Most I presume got tired of all of the malarkey and said, "I quit"; which I've had those thoughts many times myself.  Let's face it, its a tough world out there in Old Catholic Land USA - we have certain mainline Churches (I won't name who) that threaten with court action, crazy OCC/Independent bishops who make up lies and stories and spread them around - of course everyone already knows they are crazy and doesn't believe them anymore anyway, then we have a whole array of "special" clergy who, your not sure if they are vesting for Mass or, as a priest friend of mine said, "they are getting vested for dessert" - wearing a mitre in a clerical suit and a chasuble over jeans and a polo shirt.

It seems that most of the Jurisdictions, Dioceses, etc. out there in Old Catholic/Independent/ISM, won't last 5 years or more.  There are some, but there are soo many divisions and schisms within these groups that once a division happens, its too much to repair.  Some start out with a strong membership, grow even a bit and then fizzle due to the clergy leaving.  Of course some clergy will go to another jurisdiction, some will start something new and then some will think, "I'm tired of these bishops, so I'm just going to get myself Consecrated so I don't have to answer to anyone else, ever again..."  Why do we, as a collective group of Old Catholic bishops, even consider Consecrating individuals like these?  I only accepted Consecration after I was duly elected by the Jurisdiction I was a part of and it was not an easy thing for me to accept.  One thing that my mind was made up on, was that I was never going to Consecrate anyone a bishop who asked me to consecrate them.

Your probably wondering why in my title above I mention socks, how does this fit into this rambling article, well it seems that clergy in this country like to change their jurisdiction and bishops, like they change their socks.  I have seen priests go from group to group in the matter of a week, to a few months, to even a few hours.  It is ridiculous that there is no cooperation among bishops in this country to ask the question to a new candidate for acceptance: WHY?  Why did you leave your previous bishop?  Did he say something that you didn't agree with, like the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass shouldn't be celebrated in PJ's at the kitchen table along side the eggs and rashers?  It's time to grow up and start acting like bishops, priests and deacons and stop acting like a bunch of children.  Let us recall in the words of St. Paul to the Corinthians, "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child. But, when I became a man, I put away the things of a child." 

+Brendan Patrick, CSB

Sunday, January 31, 2016

It has been awhile...

So it has been awhile since I have posted anything, and I intend to change that going forward.  This weekend I was on retreat and had some time to reflect on the spiritual life and will be sharing those thoughts here on my blog.  It is always good to take some time and reflect, especially away from the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life; it was long overdue.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Spirituality and Other Stuff

It's hard to believe the year is over half over now...before we know it the time will come to begin preparations for Advent.  So far this year, we have ordained one deacon, continued formation for two seminarians, and extended faculties to one new priest.  It may not sound like much, but we know that we are continuing to grow due to God's Providence.  I ask all those reading this to pray for further growth in the mission of spreading the Gospel message of hope and love to everyone.  We are in a hurting world and it doesn't make sense to further the hurt and hate in people's lives. 

I don't need a fancy church building, a big bank account, an over priced graduate degree or acceptance from the Church of Rome in order to spread the message of Christ.  We can all bring the love of Christ to all we meet, even in Liturgies celebrated in living rooms, outdoors, or whatever space may be made available.  The early church met in homes and it seems that many more are doing that these days.  I prefer the simplicity of the Celtic Spirituality and recognizing that God is all present, not just in the church building, but in all of His creation.  In fact, it is easier to sit on the Cliffs of Moher and pray and meditate than to sit in some large-overcrowded church with people sitting around coughing and making other noises.  Now don't get me wrong, churches and cathedrals, monasteries, etc. are all great and laudable buildings, and I love the beauty of the stained-glass windows, the statues, icons, and such.  However it can get some people too focused on material things instead of on the things of God.

There is a book that I recommend you read, if you are interested in Celtic spirituality or just for a refreshing new look at spirituality in general:
Water from an Ancient Well: Celtic Spirituality for Modern Life by Kenneth McIntosh

Sunday, August 2, 2015

I am the Bread of Life

“I am the bread of life;
whoever comes to me will never hunger,
and whoever believes in me will never thirst.”

In today's Gospel reading, we hear Jesus tell us that He is The Bread of Life.  He left us that great gift of the Eucharist, which is the Bread of Life, which is Jesus Himself.  We receive nourishment from the Eucharist, and also the Word of God.  With these two, he promises us that we will never hunger and never thirst.

Jesus gives us not only himself, but he also gives us the instructions to obtain Eternal Life with him.  Over and over again, he repeats the phrase...Do not be afraid.  He isn't the fearful One from the Old Testament times, instead he is a loving and compassionate Redeemer, who came into the world not to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for us on the Cross. 

Sometimes people, clergy or churches will get too caught up in analyzing and over-analyzing issues that Christ Himself never spoke about in Sacred Scripture.  I prefer the Celtic way in this all, and that is to keep it simple.  Christ and the Apostles were simple as well.  None of them had all of these seminary degrees and doctorates.  The Apostles, our first bishops, were simple fishermen.  And I believe they did a pretty good job of passing the Faith along to the masses. 

This coming Saturday, August 8th, I will be traveling to South Carolina to ordain a young man as a Deacon.  I ask that you all pray for him and the parish there as they work in brining the Bread of Life to the people of God.

+Brendan

Gospel Jn 6:24-35

When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there,
they themselves got into boats
and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus.
And when they found him across the sea they said to him,
“Rabbi, when did you get here?”
Jesus answered them and said,
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
you are looking for me not because you saw signs
but because you ate the loaves and were filled.
Do not work for food that perishes
but for the food that endures for eternal life,
which the Son of Man will give you.
For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.”
So they said to him,
“What can we do to accomplish the works of God?”
Jesus answered and said to them,
“This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent.”
So they said to him,
“What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you?
What can you do?
Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, as it is written:
He gave them bread from heaven to eat.”
So Jesus said to them,
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven;
my Father gives you the true bread from heaven.
For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven
and gives life to the world.”

So they said to him,
“Sir, give us this bread always.”
Jesus said to them,
“I am the bread of life;
whoever comes to me will never hunger,
and whoever believes in me will never thirst.”

Friday, July 24, 2015

What's with all the titles?

A few months ago I posted on Facebook about the crazy use of Ecclesiastical Titles...for those who haven't read it I'll repost it here:

Lately I've seen several posts regarding "Popes" out there in the Independent/OCC. What is wrong with these people?? One claims to be Pope of the Holy See of Antioch Vatican, another site was set up for an election of a pope, another guy claims to be the rightful Pope of the Roman Catholic Church in Montana....oh but wait, there's another RCC Pope over in Wisconsin. This one claims to be a Metropolitan, and that one Patriarch, and on and on. Then we have Patriarch Bob who... wasn't happy enough as Patriarch, he had to get one of his bishops to create him as a Royal Archduke of the Order of the Holy Cross of the Knights of the Roundtable at Hogwarts. No wonder Rome, Utrecht, Canterbury, Antioch, etc look at the Old Catholics in the USA as a group of freaks.....what's wrong with simply being bishop of your respectful jurisdictions and cutting out all of the crazy? 

I don't know why Jurisdictions with only a few bishops and no priests or hardly any priests can have titles of grandeur.  His Beatitude, His Eminence, His Grace...is it really necessary to use such titles when you have nothing but bishops?  Does it really make any sense?  I guess so the other bishops don't feel left out they have to give each other titles...that way there's no hard feelings. 

In those Jurisdictions that have numerous priests and a few bishops, then there might be a time to use Presiding Bishop or something of that nature, but when you have 3 bishops and 2 priests, is there really a need to have Metropolitan Archbishop or Primate? 

Please....wake up and smell the incense!!!



Saturday, July 11, 2015

Prayer of Saint Columba


Almighty God,

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

to me the least of saints,

to me allow that I may keep even the smallest door,

the farthest, darkest, coldest door,

the door that is least used, the stiffest door.

If only it be in Your house, O God,

that I can see Your glory even afar,

and hear Your voice,
and know that I am with You, O God.

Fáilte

Welcome to my new blog, Musings from an Irish Bishop.  Here is a little bio that I wrote for one of our seminarians' blog (brendanantonycsb.blogspot.com):

Bishop Brendan Patrick was consecrated in April 2013 at Our Lady of Consolation Old Catholic Church, Dallas, Texas.  In December of 2007 he was ordained a priest after completing studies at St. Faustina Seminary & Holy Trinity Minor Seminary.  Bishop Brendan's family comes from Co. Tipperary & Co. Waterford in Ireland; he visits home as often as possible.  The bishop enjoys Liturgy and has studied the Roman, Celtic, Orthodox and Anglican Rites.  He also is accomplished in Gregorian Chant and liturgical music, having sung at several Ordinations and many Solemn High Masses over the last 20 years.  In his free time, Bp. Brendan enjoys watching Irish movies, studying Irish history and chatting Theology with friends over a cup of tea.

I am the bishop of a jurisdiction that includes 4 priests, 2 deacon candidates and 1 seminarian.  Currently we are forming the Companions of Saint Brendan, an Order that is based in Celtic Spirituality - you can find out more by visiting the blog listed above in this post.  If you are interested in responding to the Lord's Call, I invite you to email me at: bishopbrendanpatrick@gmail.com for more information.

My thoughts for this blog are to post different topics that are current in the Church and society.  To engage people in conversation regarding, what some may find tough or controversial, issues that people are dealing with, not only in regards to religion, but life in general. 

Blessings,
+Brendan Patrick