Real Templar Secrets

Yesterday, I made a phenomenal discovery—or at least I think it is.  I was looking on YouTube for any tracks from an CD of Ensemble Organum called Chante Corse, which are Franciscan chants from  17-18 century Corsica.  I always loved the Eastern flavor.  Listen for example to the Tantum Ergo.

But what I discovered blew me away.  Ensemble Organum has also produced a CD of chants from—ready for this?—the Knights Templar.  Apparently, the chants are from 12th century manuscripts found in the Temple in Jerusalem.  Here are the real Templar lost secrets and ancient wisdom and—guess what?—its all Catholic.  No Templar baloney here.

I am linking to several videos from YouTube that feature tracks off the CD.

The first is Crucem Sanctam Subiit:

Crucem sanctam subiit,
qui infernum confregit,
accinctus est potentia,
surrexit die tertia. Alleluia.

Lapidem quem reprobaverunt
aedeficantes factus est
caput anguli, alleluia.

He bore the Holy Cross,
who broke the power of hell;
He was girded with power
He rose again the third day, alleluia

The stone that the architects rejected
became the cornerstone, alleluia.

It is half chant and half military march, as the Templars were both monks and knights.  Awesome:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Gloria.tv: CRUCEM sanctam subiit… E…“, posted with vodpod

The other track I am posting is the Templar version of the Salve Regina (Hail Holy Queen).  One version of the origin of this Marian antiphon in such common usage within the Western Church is that it was written as a crusader march:

It has also been attributed to Adhémar, Bishop of Podium (Puy-en-Velay), whence it has been styled “Antiphona de Podio” (Anthem of Le Puy). Adhémar was the first to ask permission to go on the crusade, and the first to receive the cross from Pope Urban II. “Before his departure, towards the end of October, 1096, he composed the war-song of the crusade, in which he asked the intercession of the Queen of Heaven, the Salve Regina” (Migne, “Dict. des Croisades”, s. v. Adhémar). He is said to have asked the monks of Cluny to admit it into their office, but no trace of its use in Cluny is known before the time of Peter the Venerable, who decreed (about 1135) that the anthem should be sung processionally on certain feasts.

Tremendous basso profundo drone!

I am blown away.

Real Templars

Here is some information that is real news to me, provided by Noah and Ryan, in regard to a legimate claiment to the title Militia Templi Christi Pauperum Millitum Ordo, or Knights Templar.  And yes, this is very legit, a fact which I was not inclined to accept, until it was proven to me.  Mind you, the members of this brotherhood in arms are very clear to disclaim any connection with the historical order, since any such claim, if and when made—as it often is by pretenders—is always false.  The knights already have a well established presence in the United States.

The professed members have a fourth promise of “public testimony of faith.”  Excellent!

Here is some background from Noah and I invite him to respond if anyone has any questions.

First, we do not claim to be descended from the original order.  Many of the people making that claimare Freemasons.

We are a canonically legal Lay Order who live according to the Rule of the Militia Templi which is a close replica of the Primative Rule of the Templare written by St. Bernard of Clairvaux.  Like the ancient Order, the Militia Templi consists of Catholic Lay Faithful binding ourselves to much of the aethetics of the monk, but living in the secular world as knights, in effect a restoration of the order.

We are recognized as a private association of lay faithful and our Constitution and Rule are approved by the Archdiocese of Siena.  The Magistral See of the Militia Templi is located in Poggibonsi Italy.  The Magistral See consists of a 12th Century Templar castle which is the See of the Grand Master of the Order.  The Abbot Protector of the Militia is HE Abbot Philip Lawrence OSB of Christ in the Desert Monastery.  Like the ancient Order, the Militia Templi is divided into Preceptories and the North American Preceptory now consists of eight Professed Knights, two Dames and approximately 25 Novices.  In the North  American Preceptory we have four Chaplains to include our senior Chaplain, HE Bishop Kevin Vann, Bishop of Ft. Worth Tx.  The Militia Templi is in full communion with the Holy See and with the local Ordinary.

Pope John Paul II gave plenary indulgences to the order 1989 for certain special liturgical feast days and the days of our novitiate and investiture, etc.  In 1991 the Militia received an indult from the Holy See to use

the liturgy in place by 1962.  Accordingly, the Militia has a preference for the Extraordinary Form of the Mass and prays the Divine Office per the Breviary of Blessed John XXIII.

The Militia Templi consists of both celibate and married knights as well as dames.  As laity, knights take perpetual private vows of obedience to the Rule and the Superiors of our Order, chastity according to our station in life, spiritual poverty, and to defend the Holy Faith.  Under the discipline of the Rule, knights and novices are bound to pray certain parts of the Divine Office, assist Holy Mass frequently, receive the sacrament of penance at least once a month and pray the Holy Rosary daily.  As such, the Militia is a vocation which is the gift of God.  Our hope is to achieve heaven, and holiness and sanctification on earth by a life of work, prayer and self-sacrifice.   We pray and work so that we may live a life of heroic virtue and prefer nothing to the love of Christ.  For me it is my weakness that makes me need to live under such a rule and which allows Christ to be our strength and Mary to be our consolation.

As Knights living in the world we offer ourselves as the victims of the secular battlefield as the priest offers himself as the victim of the Mass. It is the charism of the Order to protect  what remains of Christendom against secularism with its attendant erred philosophies threatening our culture, and to work towards the restoration of Christendom.  The Militia defends and supports the traditional Liturgy and the social dogmas of the Church per the Magisterium.  We have a special focus on the teaching of the Holy Faith and knightly virtue to the young in an age of relativism and practical atheism.

I am a huge fan of MaryVictrix, Standing Fast, AirMaria and the FI.

Thanks, Noah.

The Knights of Christ

My last full day in Fatima, Father Peter, Father Andre, Fra Solanus and a local Fatima friend of the friars, Leo Madigan had an opportunity to visit the Convento de Cristo, a very imposing Knights Templar Castle less than an hour away from Fatima.  In 1319, few years after the papal suppression of the Templars, the knights were re-founded in Portugal as the Knights of Christ, and retained possession of the monastery fortress.

The Templar Church architecture is very notable.  The original construction of the Church was round to which a later rectangular nave was added.  This pattern is seen also in the Church of the Temple in London and the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Cambrige, and all of these examples are based on the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, the focus of the whole crusading spirit.

Templar Alert!

Barbara Frale, the Vatican Achives historian who found the Chinon Parchment and has written an account of its significance, which is now in English (looks more sensational than scholarly), now claims that she has evidence of something that has long been affirmed of the Templars, namely, that they were in possession of the Shroud of Turin from the beginning of the 13th to the middle of the 14th centuries:

Barbara Frale, a researcher in the Vatican Secret Archives, said the Shroud had disappeared in the sack of Constantinople in 1204 during the Fourth Crusade, and did not surface again until the middle of the fourteenth century. Writing in L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper, Dr Frale said its fate in those years had always puzzled historians.

However her study of the trial of the Knights Templar had brought to light a document in which Arnaut Sabbatier, a young Frenchman who entered the order in 1287, testified that as part of his initiation he was taken to “a secret place to which only the brothers of the Temple had access”. There he was shown “a long linen cloth on which was impressed the figure of a man” and instructed to venerate the image by kissing its feet three times

One of the allegations brought against the Templars by their enemies was that they worshiped the head of a bearded man.  Frale seems to be declaring this allegation to be directed at veneration of the Shroud, a theory that has been espoused by others.  That is not the only theory that has been put forward.

Here is some of the usual freemasonic misrepresentation of the Church’s position on the shroud:

The Shroud of Turin is a linen cloth that appears to have been used to wrap the body of a man who had been crucified, and ghostly images appear of a man with a bearded face. In spite of almost immediate pronouncements by the Catholic Church that it was a fake, the faithful believed that the image was of Jesus, and continue to do so today. Chemical analysis and carbon dating techniques used in 1988 provided results that the markings were paint and that the cloth dated from the 14th century, but those results were almost immediately called into question. The Shroud is, today, the property of the Vatican, which has always refused to declare it to be the authentic image of Christ.

The fact is, the Church has treated the Shroud as a holy relic all the time it has been in her possession and has allowed the faithful to venerate it as such.

The Catholic Church, owners of the shroud, have made no pronouncements claiming it is Christ’s burial shroud, or that it is not a forgery. The matter has been left to the personal decision of the faithful. Pope John Paul II stated in 1998, “Since we’re not dealing with a matter of faith, the church can’t pronounce itself on such questions. It entrusts to scientists the tasks of continuing to investigate, to reach adequate answers to the questions connected to this shroud.” He has shown himself to be deeply moved by the image of the shroud, and arranged for public showings in 1998 and 2000.

Let us see what the conspiracy theorists can squeeze out of this unripe olive.  Enough to deep fry a turkey?

Knights of the Patronage

All right, so I will now get back to more edifying business. I have given everyone more than a piece of my mind on the question of the election, as have also some of you who have commented here.

I apologize for my snarkiness. My desire was to defend a pro-life woman who was being trashed all over the place. I got carried away and I am duly rebuked by the lady, though I really don’t know what her point is about Ben Stein’s movie.

Templar Prayer

I still can’t find a translation of the Templars’ prayer to Our Lady, which is unfortunate. The best I can come up with this description provided by the scholar who found the Chinon Parchment:

It was “beautiful and moving” and “full of poetry”, Dr Frale said, but “incredibly has never been studied”. The prayer is addressed to “Holy Mary, mother of God”, the “consolation of those who hope”, and “humbly implores” her to obtain freedom for the order “through the intercession of the angels, archangels, prophets, evangelists, apostles, martyrs, confessors and virgins”. It adds that the Virgin Mary knows that “our enemies” have spread “calumnies and lies” about the order, and pleads with her to make them “return to truth and charity”.

In their rite of profession, the Knights Templar formulated their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience in terms of solemn promises made to “God and St. Mary,” so it is no wonder that the they would have turned to Mary in their dire circumstances, invoking Her as the “consolation of those who hope,” and having confident recourse to Her for deliverance.

In fact this spontaneous confidence in the power of Mary to overcome evil has always been the intuition of Christians. I would like to share a little reflection on the ancient devotion to Mary and the development of chivalry in the context of another prayer found on a manuscript that had been hidden in obscurity for many years. Continue reading

Templar Update

The universally acknowledge (i.e. in the universe of Hertfordshire) expert on all things Templar has condescended to tell us what the Vatican’s new release of a Templar prayer means:

Modern day Templar Ben Acheson told the Herald: “This seems to be an attempt at apologising. Saying sorry by releasing a poem is rather cryptic and dramatic, but the Templars and the Vatican like to conduct business that way when it comes to matters grave and ancient.”

Ben, old man, What is so cryptic about a prayer to Our Lady by the monks who actually pronounced their vows to “God and St. Mary?  Perhaps you have access to the ancient manuscripts?  No one else seems to have a copy of the prayer.

Even the warden of the Illuminati Conspiracy Archive from whence comes the link cannot verify the story of the supposed Templar/Vatican conspiracy codified in the prayer:

TM:I have no definite opinion on the Acheson claims. The local Hertfordshire “press,” however, have been “reporting” on this for quite some time, and never seem to seriously question the validity of the Achesons. This, it seems, is outright exploitation of the public’s credulity in the wake of the Da Vinci Code phenomenon.

I know I am such a stick in the mud.  I can’t help it.  I just think it would be much more fun if these Templar poseurs would do more of the reanactment stuff and less of the esoteric skullduggery.

Templar Baloney Revisited (Updated)

Here we go again.

Well, someone from the Telegraph has at least finally read the Chinon Parchment instead of just repeating what the sensationalists continue to spout.

The occasion is the release of a new book by Michael Haag, which is reviewed by Christopher Howse:

Michael Haag, in his well-knit narrative, gets through an enormous spread of history, helpfully telling readers what the Bible has to say about the Jewish Temple before running through the Roman, Muslim and Crusader centuries. The after-history of the Templars is dominated by the imaginings of Freemasons and the conspiracy fancies of scarcely distinct alternative historians and novelists. If anything, the author is too tolerant of this froth. Historical truth does matter.

Why is that among authors who dedicate themselves to unraveling the “Templar mysteries” one after another are “too tolerant of this froth”? Perhaps, because frothy books sell better than honest and realistic ones? I am a perpetual stick in the mud.

Howse is refreshingly unsympathetic to Templar baloney, but unfortunately is also unsympathetic to the Church Militant:

Perhaps the Templars themselves were off-beam from their first dawn, since it seems to have escaped the notice of these poor, chaste and obedient monk-knights that Christ was not a soldier. They joined St Bernard in promoting the rather disastrous Second Crusade, but found little success in freeing Christian territories in the Holy Land from surrounding warring Islamic factions. They had better luck in Spain, where the frontier of reconquered territory pushed steadily southwards.

Hmm,  “Christ was not a soldier.”  Oh, really?  Seems Christ was more a soldier than St. George for Our Lord’s dragon threatened not just one virgin, but the whole human race.  Mr. Howse should read Genesis 3:15, John 19, Ephesians 5 and Revelations 12.

Furthermore, the word of Christ to soldiers was not a condemnation of soldering, but of the sins common to soldiers:  Then some soldiers asked him, “And what should we do?” He replied, “Don’t extort money and don’t accuse people falsely–be content with your pay (Lk. 3:14).

Perhaps both the sensationalists and pacifists would do well to read some reliable history on the Crusades instead of relying on Ridley Scott.  (See this video at 3:16-3:27 for a nice taste of the slop that too many moviegoers are only too eager to lap up).

A sword salute and click of the heals to Frank Wilson.

Update:

Michael Haag, has commented below Mr Haag is the author of the book The Templars:  History and Myth, the review of which is the subject of this post.  His comment is a fair defense of his book, which I admittedly have not read.  See also my response to him following his comment.

Preposterous Templar Fiction

For me it was an opportunity to both tell a fun story as well as try and explore some issues that I thought were important, especially right now, given what is going on in the world.

Where have I heard that before? How long do you think it will be before he claims his rant is only fiction?

*Spoiler Alert (though not much to spoil, and you could have guessed it anyway)*

The issue is that–guess what–the Templars had a secret, and the secret–no it couldn’t be anything like the Da Vinci Code, could it?–the secret is that Jesus kept a diary in which he claimed he was man and not God. So very original.

“Vatican plot, you say? Oh, how interesting. Sure we’ll publish it.”

And you’ll be happy to know that we can look forward to a Canadian television adaptation of the novel. Thank God for the Canadian border!

A Breath of Fresh Common Sense from Chesterton

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A recent exchange on this blog sent me back to the writings of the Apostle of Common Sense in order to make sure I was not going insane. I am quite sure that definitions and distinctions, principles and conclusions are very important to human thought, both in terms of ordinary human discourse and the exercise of faith. Unfortunately, as Chesterton has observed, common sense has been replaced with “uncommon nonsense.”

I thought I might post a bit of Chesterton in honor of common sense. It would seem to me that in the great chivalric tradition of the Military Orders like the Knights Templar and the Knights of St. John, the importance of fighting for a fixed truth should easily be seen. I think I have found a neat synthesis of Chesterton on the point of establishing first principles and fighting for them. Interestingly, I have done this by taking the last paragraphs from both the introductory and concluding chapters of Heretics, which are entitled respectively, “Introductory Remarks on the Importance of Orthodoxy” and “Concluding Remarks on the Importance of Orthodoxy”.

Several really important things to note about the book Heretics are that when G.K. wrote it he was not yet a Catholic, and that while he was intellectual enemies with those he criticizes, he was also personal friends with some of them, like George Bernard Shaw and H.G. Wells. In other words his dicussion of heretics had nothing to do with defending a certain religious creed, nor had he any personal animosity for those with whom he disagreed. He respected them as honest men, but he found their thought, not only disagreeable but dangerous. Very often it was not only this or that proposition that was at stake but thought itself. Continue reading

Templar Baloney Every Bit

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I am obliged to follow up on my previous Templar posts (category), regarding the events surrounding the release of the Chinon Parchment. As it turns out, the reports released by the secular press, which included interviews with Templar pretenders, gave the impression that the absolution of the Templars, recorded in the Chinon document, was an effective rehabilitation, that is, an acknowledgment that the Templars were unjustly accused. This is in no way the case. The rough translation of the Chinon Parchment, which until now, remains unchallenged, makes it clear that the Templars were guilty of grave sin, confessed their sin and were mercifully absolved by the Church. Continue reading