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By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK
Join our small group of pilgrims on a journey to Italy from September 1
through 9, 2016. Our adventure will of course be a spiritual one, but
also cultural as we make stops to explore some of the major historic and
beautiful cities of Italy as well as Rome for Mother Teresa’s
canonization at St. Peter’s Square on September 4th.
I lived in
Italy for two years immersed in this richest culture of Europe and
perhaps the world. You will have an opportunity for Italian lessons. I
will share insights about the people and culture to enrich your
experience. Traditional Latin Mass daily or in Italian will be offered,
depending upon the desires of our group.
Florence, and Venice are among the most beautiful of the many cultural,
spiritual, and architectural gems of Catholic Italy. If you call, give
the dates for “Italy Regular,” September 1-9, and my name to ensure you
are registering for our group.
Day 1: Departure from USA.
Day 2: Arrival. Depending upon your arrival time, we may visit the
Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls where the body of St. Paul is
buried. It is the second largest basilica in Rome. Check in the hotel
and rest for a few hours if time permits. In the afternoon, we will be
visiting St. Mary Major, the main basilica dedicated to Mary in Rome.
We will see the remains of Jesus’ manger, the tomb of Bernini, the
remains of St. Matthew the Evangelist, the tomb of St. Jerome, and the
oldest icon in the world of the Virgin Mary painted by St. Luke: the
famous Salus Populi Romani. We may attend an Italian Mass at St. Mary
Major as well. Casual dress. Dinner and overnight in Rome.
3: Start around 9:00 a.m. Visit the Colosseum, the symbol of the city of
Rome; a great building that has been standing since AD 80. Then visit
St. John Lateran, the first basilica ever to be built in the Roman
Empire. In the afternoon, go to the Catacombs where 500,000 people were
buried. After the Catacombs our private bus will take us to enjoy a wine
tasting and free time in Santa Maria in Trastevere, the most famous
quarter of Rome. Dinner and overnight in Rome.
Day 4: Start the
day around 9:30 a.m., by visiting St. Peter’s in the Vatican, the
largest basilica in the world. There will be time for private devotions
and shopping before lunch. In the afternoon we will see the Vatican
Museums, and the Sistine Chapel. There is a dress code: long pants,
capris, or skirts below the knee, shoulders covered. Time to rest before
dinner in the area of the hotel. Red and white wine included. Overnight
Day 5: We will have an early start as our private bus
leaves around 7:00 am for the Vatican to attend the 10:00 a.m. audience
with the Pope. There will be time for lunch in the area of the Vatican,
before we visit the Spanish Steps. From there we will walk to Trevi
Fountain, and have time for shopping. This will be followed by a walk to
the Pantheon, the oldest functional building in the world, and then to
the Piazza Navona around 4:30 p.m. Dinner at Piazza Navona. Red and
white wine included. Casual dress throughout the day. Overnight in Rome.
Day 6: En route to Florence, stop in Assisi. See the tombs of St.
Francis and St. Clare; enjoy a peaceful walk on the streets of Assisi.
Dinner in Tuscany. Overnight in Florence.
Day 7: Tour of Florence in the region of Tuscany. Tour of the Ponte Vecchio, Piazza della Signoria, the Uffizi, Michelangelo’s David,
Flea Market, Duomo (Cathedral), and the Baptistery. Tour guide will
show to those interested the location of the Basilica of San Lorenzo and
the Medici Chapel (where the Medici family is buried), and Basilica
della Santa Croce (where Michelangelo is buried). Dinner in Florence.
Red and white wine included. Casual dress throughout the day. Overnight
Day 8: Tour of Venice: an amazing city built on
water. Leave for Venice in the morning on our private bus. Estimated
time of arrival is noon. Visit St. Mark’s plaza. Optional: Gondola ride
and shopping. Long pants if you intend to go inside St. Mark’s. Casual
dress if you intend to go on a Gondola ride or spend time shopping and
visiting the beautiful streets and bridges of Venice. Dinner and
overnight in Venice.
Day 9: Our private bus brings us to the airport in Venice to fly back to USA.
The pilgrimage includes: Flights from anywhere in the United States
and flights between countries as per your itinerary (all necessary
flights on your trip are included).
Daily Mass is available.
Airport Taxes, Security Fees & Fuel Surcharges — Saving you an average of $400-$600!
Transfers as per itinerary. Four or five star hotels in downtown areas. Transportation with luxury bus.
All breakfasts; all dinners at upscale restaurants not at hotel. Wine included with all dinners.
All tips to driver, hotel, and tour guide. Guided tours and tour fees.
Luggage handling (1 suitcase and 1 carry-on per person).
Single Supplement (as long as the passenger is willing to room with
someone and allows us to provide them with a roommate. If the passenger
wants a guaranteed room of their own, then they pay the $900 single
Remember: Passengers will never be expected to pay
extra for anything while on the trip — we always wait for passengers
and never leave anyone behind.
(Trip Does Not Include Lunch or
Trip Insurance. Work directly with Travel Guard to protect your
investment and insure your money. There are different packages to choose
from depending on what your travel needs are.)
Steps for Registration:
Easy online: To register online go to “https://www.proximotravel.com/”
“Home” page, type “Father Kevin Cusick” or “Maryland” in the box
labeled “Search for a priest” and then click on my name, “Father Kevin
Cusick” to begin registering for the pilgrimage.
Or by phone:
Call us 855-842-8001 or register online with a credit card and pay your
$500 deposit per person to save your spot. The $500 deposit is part of
the total price of the trip A $1,000 Airfare Deposit (AD) per person is
due one month from the registration. The AD is paid ONLY in the form
of check (personal, money order, or bank check).
The balance is
due four months before the trip departure date. The balance is paid
ONLY in the form of Check (personal, money order, or bank check).
Mail all checks and correspondence to: Proximo Travel • P.O. Box 3479
• Worcester, MA 01613 NOTE: If you sign up for a trip within 4 months
of the departure date, you pay the deposit of $500 with a credit card
and the balance is required to be overnighted in the form of a personal
check, money order, or bank check.
(By today delivered and read by all of the SSPX members)I. The Church is a mystery. It is the mystery of God's presence among us, our Savior, God, who does not want the death of sinners, but be converted and live. The conversion requires our collaboration.II The Church is infallible in its divine nature; but it is run by people who can make mistakes and even make mistakes. We must distinguish the office of the person. The latter remains a certain amount of time in office and then out-either by death or other circumstances, but the office remains. Pope Francis today has the papal ministry and the primacy of authority. Within an hour, we do not know,he could resign and another pope will be elected. However, while he has the Papal See, we recognize it as such and pray for him.We do not say that he is a good pope. On the contrary, he provokes with his liberal ideas and he creates a great confusion in the Church. But when Christ founded the Papacy, He saw the whole series of Popes of the whole history of the Church, including Pope Francis. And yet He allowed his ascent to the papal throne.Similarly, our Lord established the Sacrament with His Real Presence, though He foresaw the many sacrileges in the course of history.III. Archbishop Lefebvre founded the SSPX amid these confusing times for the Church. She is called to give a new generation of priests to the Church, to preserve the true Sacrifice of the Mass and proclaim the kingship of Jesus Christ throughout society, even against the liberal popes and prelates who have betrayed the faith. So I had to come necessarily conflict: in 1975 the Fraternity was sent into exile. There he not only survived, but grew and has become for many people is a sign of contradiction against the destruction of our day. This opposition became clear to the world on June 30, 1988 when for reasons of necessity, were consecrated four bishops Msgr. Lefebvre.IV. However, Msgr. Lefebvre always had the conviction to seek a canonical solution for the fraternity and did not avoid the conversation with the Roman authorities, who wanted to back off. He continued his efforts even after the consecrations of bishops, despite that in its realism had little hope of success. He asked, using ad hominem arguments, to let him "make the experience of Tradition". He fully accepted the fact that the Brotherhood was in an exceptional situation and this was no fault his own, but his opponents. The situation remained until 2000. Since then Rome has sought a remedy for the situation, sometimes so clever, sometimes with honest intention, depending on who was in care of the problem on the Roman side.V. The decline of the Church since the simultaneous and constant development of the fraternity, brought some bishops and cardinals who agreed totally or partially, though not readily confessed. Rome was gradually lowering its demands and recent proposals no longer speak of recognizing the Vatican nor the legitimacy of the Novus Ordo Missae. So it seems the time to normalize the situation of the fraternity has come, and this for several reasons:l) Any abnormal situation lends itself to standardization. This is in the nature of things.2) We must not lose sight of the danger that the faithful and some brothers used to the abnormal situation and see it as a normal . The opposition here and there against participation in the Holy Year, and the total disregard for the assignment of ordinary jurisdiction by Pope Francis (we always appeal to the state of necessity and have resorted to extraordinary jurisdiction according to the law) It is causing a stir. If the faithful or the fraternity brothers feel comfortable in this situation of freedom from dependence on the hierarchy, then this implies a gradual loss of sensus ecclesiae. We must never argue: we have sound doctrine, the true Mass, our seminaries, priories and our bishops, we lack nothing.3) We have sympathizers among priests and cardinals, some of whom would like to call on us to help them, they would give us a church building and possibly confide a seminary to our care. But currently, due to our situation, it's impossible for them to do this. In any case, barriers which the faithful but fearful have will come down. In the news media and everywhere we are regarded as schismatics or separated from the Church, we dismiss these accusations.4) In the coming years, we urgently need new bishops. It is certainly possible to consecrate them without pontifical mandate in case of emergency, but if possible to consecrate bishops with the permission of Rome, the said permission must be sought.5) Modernists, liberals and other enemies of the Church are very concerned with respect to the canonical solution for the fraternity. Discernment of spirits in this regard, suggests not what is the right and best way? 6) How will the Church will overcome this crisis? One sees that in the present state of affairs there is not even glimmer of hope. In contrast, the official act of recognition of the Fraternity trigger a healthy turmoil within the Church. The good would be encouraged, the malevolent will suffer a defeat.VI. Answers to some objections:1) How can we aspire to a recognition by Pope Francis?Answer: We have already referred above to the necessary distinction between the office and the titular of the office. There is no doubt that the current pope exercises his role established by God . But we must keep in mind what the council really was and the consequences it brought to the Church: confusion, the dictatorship of relativism, pastoral over doctrine, friendship with the enemies of God and enemies of Christianity. But precisely this is one of the mistakes of the council: separate the the cause from the effects. Some were infatuated with the person of Benedict XVI, instead of regarding the papal office first and person second, making his resignation like a cold shower for many. We must not make the same mistake of infatuating ourselves too close to the person rather than the divine institution! Perhaps only the pope Francis is able to take this step (normalization), by unpredictability and improvisation. The media may have forgiven him for having taken this step, but would never have forgiven Benedict.In its authoritarian, not to say tyrannical style of government, he would be able to implement this measure even for the Resistance.2) But what do people say of the Resistance?Answer: We can not guide our actions for people who obviously has lost the sense of Church and love for the Church in its concrete form. As it stands now, they are fighting each other. 3) In the future we will have to keep silent about all current errors.Answer: We will not be silent, more over, we will point out the errors by name. Before and after our normalization. We would like to return from our"exile" in which we are today. 4) The reputation Pope Francis has among Catholics is so bad that recognition for their part would harm rather than benefit the SSPX.Answer: Since the beginning we differentiated between the office and the person. If Francis is pope , which he is - then he also has the primacy of jurisdiction over the church. Whether he uses (jurisdictional primacy) it for the good of the Church or not. We must follow the path of usefulness for the Church; orient our actions not by human will and God will bless us. 5) But this integration of the SSPX in the conciliar system will cost you your profile, maybe even your identity.Answer: It all depends on how strong we are and who converts whom. If we act strongly, based on the grace of God, then our situation may be a blessing for the entire Church. Where else could be the Fraternity be in order to make possible such a conversion? Of course we should not count on our own abilities and powers, but God's help. Think of the fight between David and Goliath. For this we make an analogy: as Christians we are in a wicked and corrupt world, and we need to prove ourselves here. The danger of contagion is great; but we can and must escape it with the grace of God. One thing is clear: a new situation does not facilitate our position as it will stand, it will be complicated, and yet, it will make it thrive more. 6) All Congregations which were subjected to Rome adapted to conciliate or even perished within the system.Answer: Our starting position is not the same: In our case it is Rome who pressed for a solution and approached us. In other cases, these “Fraternities” are the applicants, often went to Rome with guilt.Moreover, none of them has bishops outside the Apostolic Administration Saint John Vianney in the Diocese of Campos in Brazil, where the bishop RIFAN is willing to make any compromise. Of course solid protection by an appropriate ecclesial structure is required. This appears to be guaranteed by the personal prelature. This structure has not been offered to another congregation. Finally, the objection raised has been true only in part, with some exceptions in the German - speaking region. However, insurgency has been the life of the SSPX.VII. ConclusionIf God wants to help His Church indeed He has many means. One of them is the recognition of the SSPX by the Roman authorities. Isn’t the SSPX consecrated to the Blessed Virgin, who will protect and guide its work in this new situation? -Dignare me laudare te, Virgo sacrata; da mihi virtutem contra hostes tuos - Grant me to praise thee, Holy Virgin; give me strength against your enemies.Zaitzkofen, February 19, 2016P. Franz SchmidbergerRector