Newsletter of the District
From Father Couture
Friends and Benefactors,
me to relive with you a very memorable week in the history of the
Society of Saint Pius X in Asia, the seven days from February 24
to March 2. It is part of the virtue of gratitude to remember the
gifts received, and the greater the gifts, the greater the gratitude
as well. The heavenly gifts bestowed on us during these days have
been so great that we will be able to recall them in the most solemn
way possible in the Catholic Church: with a particular liturgical
feast day, unique to us, the feast of the Dedication of the Church
of Our Lady of Victories. Let me recall this visit of His Excellency
Bishop Bernard Fellay, our dear Superior General.
arrived in Manila airport on Monday, February 24 after spending
a few days in Singapore where he was able to bless Mr. & Mrs.
J. Sumantri on the occasion of their 40th Wedding Anniversary.
Monday and Tuesday were spent talking with the priests and getting
over the jet-lag. On Tuesday afternoon, a national television crew
came to interview the Superior General as well as the District Superior
for a report on the Society of St. Pius X to be shown a week later.
In the evening, His Excellency blessed our small medical clinic
which was finally ready just in time. It was the first time in
the history of the Society of Saint Pius X that such a project was
initiated: a traditional mini-hospital run by traditional Catholic
Doctors on the very premises of our church. After the blessing,
the bishop gave a lengthy and profound talk to the doctors and other
more important visitors arrived: first our General Bursar, Fr. François
Laisney who was inspecting the various priories of the District
checking their accounts programming their computers, etc. and secondly,
Fr. Paul Morgan, former Superior of the Philippines, now stationed
in the Society’s School in England. That evening, Bishop Fellay
gave a conference to all the faithful on Ecumenism and the Catholic
at the time the cocks begin their singing, i.e. 3:30 - 4:00 a.m.
(!) the Bishop Fellay and Fr. McMahon flew to Mindanao. You can
read the account of this elsewhere in the Newsletter. Later in
the afternoon, Fr. A. Rostand, prior of Sri Lanka, arrived. Friday
night, the altar having received its four columns, the church doors
newly and beautifully carved, the ceremonies of the consecration
or dedication of the church could begin at the altar of relics with
the singing of the Matins of the Martyrs. These relics were of
(1) St. Emerentiana, Virgin and Martyr, the half sister of St. Agnes,
(2) St. Modestus and (3) St. Verecunda, Martyrs.
morning, March 1st. At nine o’clock sharp, our Swiss bishop proceeded
to the main church doors to commenced this 4 hour and 50 minutes
ceremony, which included a Pontifical High Mass. The highlight
of this intricate ceremony was no doubt when the bishop lighted
5 fires on the altar while singing the “Veni Sancte Spiritus...
Come Holy Ghost... enkindle in our hearts the fire of Thy love...”.
on the altar reminded us of the Old Testament sacrifices figure
of the Divine Sacrifice of the Cross. The Faithful who had come
from various parts of Asia for the event went home replenished with
grace and impressed by the beauty of the Catholic liturgy.
was followed by the singing of Pontifical Vespers, at the request
of Bishop Fellay himself.
are few copies left of the booklet of the consecration available
for P50/US $2 (or equivalent) postage included.
March 2, we had the ceremony of Confirmations for 43 candidates,
young and old, men and women. Due to all the visiting priests still
present, we were able to have a second Pontifical High Mass at the
on, every year on March 1st, our Church will celebrate its liturgical
birth by lighting the 12 candles on the 12 pillars. The titular,
is of course, Our Lady of Victories, who is celebrated here on October
7th. On this particular point, we acquire a new ornate carpet for
the beautiful carved altar, replica of a Philippine masterwork.
This new carpet is, symbolically, an authentic Persian carpet i.e.
made in Turkey. How fitting to have it at the foot of Our Lady
video has been made of this event. Also available from us at our
all our readers a very sanctifying Holy Week and a happy feast of
Easter, I remain yours truly in Our Lord Jesus Christ, Victim and
|May God bless