First Friday: May 2019

A respite from the social media fast for Paschaltide.

You can find the First Friday Devotions: HERE

I will be announcing a new book project that I will need your help promoting. Filii Passionis will be looking for some funding in order to get the project off the ground and to speed along the initial stages of typesetting and planning. The goal of this project will be to produce a work that assists the faithful and priests with a resource to dive more deeply into the Epistles and Gospels throughout the liturgical year. More to come!

Happy Easter!

Dear Friends, I wish you a Blessed and Happy Easter! My time in Venice was very beautiful – and the community was very grateful for the assistance of my American priest friends – allowing Solemn liturgies to be celebrated during Holy Week.

In these days of Paschaltide, I will be taking a break from social media. I ask your prayers in this regard. A priest pointed out to me recently how Jesus appears individually to disciples after the Resurrection – he told me to let Jesus do the same to me, and to ask Him for what I need. I encourage the readers of Filii Passionis to not be afraid to be honest with Our Lord. Tell Him what you need, He knows already, but He likes to hear it from you. Be brutally honest with Jesus. Without this, you may not be being honest with yourself.

After Vespers and Benediciton with the Patriarch of Venice on Easter Sunday

Photo UPDATE: [AUDIO] Good Friday Tenebrae: Trinità dei Pellegrini

Tenebrae of Good Friday at the FSSP Parish of Rome (2018):


Detail of the prep work for the Altar of Repose at the FSSP Omaha parish (2018), where the group of young adults never ceases to amaze in their love and devotion for Our Eucharistic Lord: (more to come after their liturgy)

The following photos from my dear friend Elizabeth Coffey, one of the organizers of this Altar of Repose (2018):

Christ, in the garden, we adore Thee!

[AUDIO] Maundy Thursday Tenebrae: Trinita dei Pellegrini

From the FSSP Parish in Rome, the recording of the Tenebrae of Maundy Thursday (2018):

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Photo by my dear friend, Agnese, you may know her as the “Roman Pilgrim,” visiting the station churches each day of Lent!

Wednesday in Holy Week

There is one more phase in Pilate’s weak struggle with his conscience and his sense of right. He thought that if he could have our Lord scourged somehow the mob would relent and settle for His release. So the scourging was initiated and carried out by Roman legionaries – brutalized instruments of a race noted for its absence of all tenderness. “Pilate, then, took Jesus and had Him scourged,” (Jn. 19:1) but St. Matthew was more reportorial, for he wrote:  

“Then the soldiers of the procurator took Jesus into the praetorium, and gathered together about Him the whole cohort. And they stripped Him and put on Him a scarlet cloak; and plaiting a crown of thorns, they put it upon His head, and a reed in His right hand; and bending knee before Him they mocked Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” And they spat on Him, and took the reed and kept striking Him on the head.” (Mt. 27: 27-30)

The Romans used various kinds of scourges. There was the stick (fustis), the rod (virga), and the whip (lorum) which was of leather-platted throngs and into the plats were woven iron spikes (scorpio) or knuckle bones of animals. Tradition has it that the latter was used by the soldiers to scourge Christ.

Behold your Savior bound to a low pillar with the six scourgers standing on a raised platform beside and above Him, and watch them, if you can, laying those cruel lashes on the bent back of our Lord! Let us go to His side and gaze into the pure eyes of Christ as He suffers in the scourging and acknowledge that it was our sins – yours and mine – that caused Him to endure such agony, and promise Him from this day on we shall never deliberately offend Him again.

There is another consideration I would have you ponder over in your mind. It concerns the reed placed in our Lord’s hand during the crowning with thorns as a mock gesture of a king’s scepter. Is it not worthy of note that the lowly reed should play such an important part in our Lord’s life? He began His public life by going to Cana of Galilee, to begin as it were the reconstruction and redemption of mankind with a man and his wife – since it was a man and his wife who had opened the sluice gates of sin and flooded this world with woe.  

“Cana,” you see, means “a place of reed.”

And now at the end of His public life the reed appears again and is placed in His hands in mockery of His royalty, and finally, it becomes an instrument of torture in itself – since the soldiers beat His thorn-crowned head with this same reed. I have always thought that the special sufferings inflicted on our Lord by the blows from the reed were in reparation for the mockery men and women make of marriage and the sins, such as divorce, abortion, desertion, and birth control committed by persons disdainful of God’s laws. Married persons will beg for the grace to fulfill the duty of their state and the unmarried will beg special graces for those to whom God has entrusted such awful responsibilities.

See how you can spread devotion to the Passion by assisting in the campaign to provide my publication of meditations on the Passion written by a Passionist priest for novices. May this little effort of ours bear much fruit in the reform of the Church, starting with our own souls and the souls of as many future priests we can reach! Find more information out at the BOOKS4SEMS campaign.

*From Reflections on the Passion by Father Doyle