It is with bleary eyes I write this post - we had the St Genesius feast day celebrations last night - not that they were wild - oh no - we're very sedate and civilised when it comes to Fraternity celebrations. Plenty of food of course - our caterers, the ordinary people of the Frat are the best when it comes to sarnies, cakes and lashings and lashings of ginger beer, well no, tea and coffee.
The Mass went well last night - we had a nice congregation, all who joined in the singing which is a plus in Ireland when most congregations tend to leave it to the choir. During the Mass we had the blessing of the Oil of St Genesius and the Blessed Linen which had been touched to relics of the martyr. These are made available to the faithful. So one day next week will be a bottling day - the Councillors of the Frat love that! And then there will be cutting day - dividing the Blessed Linen. All for Genesius - he had better appreciate it!
As we noted last night, there is a busy year ahead: on the 19th January we mark our fifth anniversary, so we will be planning something to celebrate it. We aim to go on pilgrimage to the tomb of St Genesius and the Holy Apostles in Rome, and I would like that to be a gathering of as many members of the Fraternity as possible. So, to all you members around the world: will you come to Rome for these celebrations? I am issuing an official invitation.
We have not decided dates yet, but it will probably be just after Easter. The Council will be discussing such matters at their next meeting, so we will announce details as they become available. But you might think about it. We aim to have organised events/Masses at the tomb and various basilicas, and the General Audience with the Holy Father, and these would be within the space of a few days, so groups coming from the various countries could visit other places besides the Fraternity gathering. So if you were planning to come to Italy/Europe, this could be an opportunity.
And for your information, here are the countries in which we have members (in no particular order): Ireland, the US, the UK, Canada, India, Australia, Peru, Nigeria, Cameroon, Greece, Mexico, The Philippines, Portugal, South Africa, Malta and Israel. If you are a member and your country is not listed here, let us know. It would be great if we could get a representation from as many of these countries as possible.
For those in the US, we have members in the following States, so pilgrimages could be organised among members in each State: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Ilinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusettes, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York City and State, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Vermot, Washington State, West Virginia and Wisconsin. Phew! The family of prayer is growing - so if you are not a member and you do not see your country/US State mentioned here - pop over to the Fraternity website and join the mission.