Dearest Friends and Benefactors of the Canons Regular of the New Jerusalem
From its inception the purpose of our priestly foundation has been to place the Church’s Sacramental Liturgy very clearly at the center of both priestly and lay spirituality. In that light the CRNJ deliberately chose to use the ancient Roman liturgy because of its scriptural, liturgical, theological and ascetic integrity
The Altar of God is the liturgical symbol of Jesus Christ Who is our Lord and Master without equivocation. This is why the altar is perfumed and kissed in the Church’s worship. The altar is Jesus Christ, the new and definitive Temple. As such Jesus is the pledge of Heaven which we possess now in time by faith
. And it is Jesus whom we will possess by vision
in the eternity of the world to come.
For all these reasons the CRNJ has decided at this time to do something as a concrete expression of the indefectibility of the Church which ever remains our Mother in faith until the Lord returns in dread majesty.
As the Bishops convene in Rome to wring their hands over what to do about the abuse crisis, the CRNJ is making a different response to the same crisis. Ours will be to emphasize with even deeper clarity something regarding the necessity of means by which holiness in the clergy - and the faithful to whom the clergy minister - is rendered in act, here and now.
For years we have been using a temporary, makeshift altar in an old and very shabby sanctuary. In the midst of what appears to many around the world to be a veritable ecclesial meltdown, we have committed ourselves to renovating the floor in the sanctuary and choir of our church in order to install a permanent and magnificent hand-carved antique German Gothic High Altar. To that will be added the much needed refurbishing of our altar candlesticks and crucifix as well as the purchase of an equally needed second ciborium.
To the numberless advocates of “progressivism” in the Church all this is a monumental waste of time and money. To Catholics who actually believe in God
it is an act of faith
since His churches are supposed to be sacred places
for a palpably divine worship in which Jesus Christ - and not the folly of man - is centerpiece.
On the day the abuse summit opens in Rome the CRNJ are launching a capital campaign to raise $75,000 to help the community defray the cost of this holy work. Those who know us will also know that the funds will be spent judiciously with maximum effect derived from the money, time, effort and art put into the project.
We humbly appeal to our many Friends and Benefactors and all interested Catholics to donate generously to this fundraising effort since it is from the Altar of God that grace flows. And grace
is the life blood by which true-believing, true-worshiping, true-teaching priests are able to carry on their lives of generous, sacrificial celibacy, prayer and service to the faithful and the world at large.
Please be assured of our prayers for you and all for whom you pray. And may the good Lord Jesus bless you for your love for Him in helping us to make for Him a fitting place for His worship and glory. . .
In the Hearts of Jesus and Mary,
Dom Daniel Augustine, CRNJ, Prior