Posted by: Catholic of Thule | July 11, 2013

Your prayers are requested for the happy repose of my sister’s soul

Please pray for the happy repose of my sister Gunborg’s soul. She died on Friday 5th July and will be buried at Bjoa near her childhood home on Friday 12th July.

Gunborg in 70s gear

Gunborg was only 45 years old and died after a long battle with cancer. Please pray also for God’s grace and consolation for her husband, Bjørn, her mum and the rest of the family.

Thanks to Andrea Niess for the photo.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | September 26, 2011


more cute kittens! My sister’s cats have had two more litters since my last kitten post. The G-litter was born yesterday, but the F-litter are at the super cute stage. Do go over to my sister’s site to have a look at the kittens.

Here’s wee Fairhopepus:


Posted by: Catholic of Thule | August 19, 2011

Wire-wrap glass rosaries on sale.

I will from time to time be putting up some wire wrap rosaries made from glass and without the somewhat costly combination of bead caps used for the gemstone rosaries I make. These will all be individually priced as I go along and are not available for custom orders  I am really adding very little for the work on the particular glass rosaries in this sale, so I can safely say that they are a bargain. This is a sale, so the prices below represent more of a ‘first come first served’ deal on these particular rosaries than a price list for future reference. The prices include a wee velvet pouch for the rosary, but postage and packaging comes in addition.

Please email me at if you wish to make a purchase. Information on the wire wrapping technique can be found here.

Blue Tigereye Czech glass rosary with pardon crucifix and miraculous medal centre piece. Price: 190NOK.








Red Tigereye Czech glass rosary with leaves and grapes crucifix and chalice centre piece: 180NOK.








Green Tigereye Czech glass rosary with St Bendict crucifix and centrepiece. These are all 6mm beads, also for the Our Fathers, and contain a cheaper combination of bead caps and spacers than the red and blue equivalent: 140NOK.










Pink glass rosary with fluted crucifix and miraculous centre piece: 90NOK.








I  will not be offering a guarantee per se on my glass rosaries. However, if there should be any problems, I would certainly be amenable to providing the labour involved in fixing them for free so long as I am able to and it is practicable in terms of getting hold of the materials needed and provided all actual costs incurred  are covered by the buyer.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | August 15, 2011

The most bountiful God!

The Assumption by Bartolomé Esteban Murillo.


1. The most bountiful God, who is almighty, the plan of whose providence rests upon wisdom and love, tempers, in the secret purpose of his own mind, the sorrows of peoples and of individual men by means of joys that he interposes in their lives from time to time, in such a way that, under different conditions and in different ways, all things may work together unto good for those who love him.

2. Now, just like the present age, our pontificate is weighed down by ever so many cares, anxieties, and troubles, by reason of very severe calamities that have taken place and by reason of the fact that many have strayed away from truth and virtue. Nevertheless, we are greatly consoled to see that, while the Catholic faith is being professed publicly and vigorously, piety toward the Virgin Mother of God is flourishing and daily growing more fervent, and that almost everywhere on earth it is showing indications of a better and holier life. Thus, while the Blessed Virgin is fulfilling in the most affectionate manner her maternal duties on behalf of those redeemed by the blood of Christ, the minds and the hearts of her children are being vigorously aroused to a more assiduous consideration of her prerogatives.

3. Actually God, who from all eternity regards Mary with a most favorable and unique affection, has “when the fullness of time came”… put the plan of his providence into effect in such a way that all the privileges and prerogatives he had granted to her in his sovereign generosity were to shine forth in her in a kind of perfect harmony. And, although the Church has always recognized this supreme generosity and the perfect harmony of graces and has daily studied them more and more throughout the course of the centuries, still it is in our own age that the privilege of the bodily Assumption into heaven of Mary, the Virgin Mother of God, has certainly shone forth more clearly.


42. We, who have placed our pontificate under the special patronage of the most holy Virgin, to whom we have had recourse so often in times of grave trouble, we who have consecrated the entire human race to her Immaculate Heart in public ceremonies, and who have time and time again experienced her powerful protection, are confident that this solemn proclamation and definition of the Assumption will contribute in no small way to the advantage of human society, since it redounds to the glory of the Most Blessed Trinity, to which the Blessed Mother of God is bound by such singular bonds. It is to be hoped that all the faithful will be stirred up to a stronger piety toward their heavenly Mother, and that the souls of all those who glory in the Christian name may be moved by the desire of sharing in the unity of Jesus Christ’s Mystical Body and of increasing their love for her who shows her motherly heart to all the members of this august body. And so we may hope that those who meditate upon the glorious example Mary offers us may be more and more convinced of the value of a human life entirely devoted to carrying out the heavenly Father’s will and to bringing good to others. Thus, while the illusory teachings of materialism and the corruption of morals that follows from these teachings threaten to extinguish the light of virtue and to ruin the lives of men by exciting discord among them, in this magnificent way all may see clearly to what a lofty goal our bodies and souls are destined. Finally it is our hope that belief in Mary’s bodily Assumption into heaven will make our belief in our own resurrection stronger and render it more effective.

Venerable Pope Pius XII, Munificentissimus Deus, (1950). Apostolic Constitution defining the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. My emphasis.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | July 24, 2011

Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine, et lux perpetua luceat eis.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord,

and let perpetual light shine upon them.

This weekend, requiem Masses are being said across the diocese of Oslo for those who died in the bomb attack in Oslo and the shootings at Utøya. Please pray for the happy repose of the souls of the deceased, for those who have been injured (some of whom are not in the clear), for those traumatised in the attacks, for the families, and for all those who have been affected by the attacks.

The influence of evil evident in the events is palpable and frightening;  perhaps especially in the shootings at Utøya, where for over an hour the perpetrator walked apparently unhurriedly about the island dressed as a policeman to inspire confidence initially and presumably confusion and added dread as what was happening became clear to the participants at the camp, shooting down young people at will,  calmly scouring the island for new victims, looking for signs of life to be extinguished in those who were lying on the ground, attempting to shoot down those who had managed to jump into the water and were swimming for their lives. After the shock of having someone who came in the guise of a policeman bearing news of the bomb blast in Oslo suddenly shooting at them, many had difficulties trusting the brave civilians who came in their boats while the killing spree was still going on to rescue whoever they could, and initially also the real police as they came on the scene. It is the stuff of nightmares, the killer calmly walking after intended victims desperately searching for somewhere to hide or a route of escape and not knowing who to trust even when help eventually was offered.

Yet, while it may be an unpopular suggestion, I believe that we should also pray for the perpetrator and all the more for the evil evident in his actions. It is not a matter of whether or not he in justice deserves charity, but whether we are in justice bound to offer charity in response to that offered to us by God so wholly undeservedly, and following the command to love. Love does not mean being blind or naive or not pursuing the path of secular justice. It does mean praying for the conversion and salvation of all, and not actively desiring that anyone receive the eternal punishment due for their sins in justice but that they will rather be opened up to God’s mercy.  Evil is not vanquished by evil. It is vanquished by love in union with that divine love which showed itself in the sacrifice of Christ. So in all this, and bearing in mind that it would undoubtedly take an act of heroic charity that should not be expected or demanded for those directly involved to offer such prayers at this time, I do not believe that we can afford to neglect prayers for the perpetrator. (And obviously for his family who must also be suffering terribly at this time.)

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | July 12, 2011

Lord Alton on the fight facing us.

Lord Alton is an apparently indefatigable pro-life campaigner in the UK.  He was at the forefront of the battle against the monstrous Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act passed in 2008. I came across his speech given to the River Thames Right to Life Summer Event on the 7th July this year on EF Pastor Emeritus’ blog, though I am linking to the speech directly on Lord Alton’s blog, which is hereby being included in my list of blogs to read regularly.

Lord Alton also concerns himself with many other issues of injustice and oppression around the world, about which you may find material on his blog.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | July 10, 2011

Rejoicing with others.

Do we understand what true charity is? If we were to answer truly, we should say indeed we know but little about it, or at least we should all be obliged to acknowledge that we have but little of it. How shall we know how little we have of it? Let us examine ourselves seriously. If we have charity, we shall love others as we love ourselves – that means more than we at present think. From mere natural sympathy, we often weep with those that weep, but do we rejoice with those that rejoice? Ah, if we truly loved, if we loved sincerely, we should rejoice in others’ joys as if they were our own. We should delight in the honor others receive; we should be grateful to those who give honor to them, who do good to them; we should almost feel as though a personal service were done to ourselves. They who posess this charity are indeed happy. They have every joy with them, since others’ joys are theirs, and even others’ sorrows. Knowing as they do that they have power to alleviate the sorrows of others by the wondrous power of prayer, the joys of others are a source of joy to them – the joy of the soul that unselfishly seeks to do good to all, that knows the good it is able to do; of the soul that faith teaches to imitate God, that does so day by day, striving to live a life of love for God and man….

Ven. Mother Mary Potter, Devotion for the Dying.

Of course, we may safely assume that Mother Mary Potter does not encourage rejoicing in evil and that the joys of others whereof she speaks are true joys and true good. Evil and spiritual calamities masquerading as joy belong rather to the category of the sorrows of others over which we grieve and which inspire joy only in the knowledge of the grace available to us through prayer for the remedy of the evil in question.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | July 8, 2011

Happy feast day of St. Sunniva!

Th Irish patron saint of western Norway.

Photo by Nina Aldin Thune shared through Wiki Commons.

I am asking the intercession of St. Sunniva today for someone in need. If any readers should feel so inclined, I would appreciate it if you could take a wee moment to ask her intercession for my intention.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | July 3, 2011

Dom Vital Lehodey on the meaning of devotion.

I think devotion is one of those things which can often be confused with the emotions that are sometimes produced by it, accompany it, and at times prompt it and ease its practice. Love is obviously another. And devotion is love of a kind, which is brought out by the way it in common speech also sometimes accompanies the notion of love when love is considered deep and sincere. Somebody is devoted to the object of their love. In this sense, perhaps the notion of devotion also in the purely secular and romantic realm is somewhat less tainted by the tendency to confuse the essence of love with mere emotional attachment or sensible passion. Even if it has not quite escaped the modern reduction to mere sentimentalism, which, imo, debases both the sentiment and the real essence of love, there is a notion that if someone is devoted to someone it involves a setting apart and a surrender of the will to the object of one’s devotion, whether in a healthy manner or an unhealthy manner, as may sometimes happen in the romantic sense.  In Norwegian the word for devotion is ‘hengivenhet’ which denotes a giving over or abandoning of oneself  to the object of one’s devotion.

Giving mere sentiment primacy is a debasement of both the sentiment and the essence of love and devotion. Allowing sentiment to run wild could easily lead to actions that are contrary to the essence of love and a tainting of the emotions themselves. We could be led astray by false and transitory emotions. We could be led astray by their absence. The primacy of the will  acting upon proper and sound knowledge of what is good and what is not puts everything in its proper place. Far from ignoring the emotional aspect of things in a manner which leads to an unfeeling coldness, this purifies and elevates emotion as one is able to steer any prompting towards evil into a proper and beneficial course instead by recognising and dealing with emotions, whether misleading or in accordance with true love, in a proper manner in the light of truth and goodness. And importantly, one is able to deal with the absence of any helpful emotions. Thus, placing the will, the intellect and emotion all in their proper place one avoids the inhumane coldness of heart which result from allowing oneself to become a slave to emotion, whether in allowing them to prompt one towards evil, to become a substitute for a real and active love, or in dictating to us through their absence  inducing despair or sloth.

In the spiritual life putting a false trust in and emphasis on emotion is deadly. As indeed in life in general. Seeking sensible consolations for themselves, allowing them to substitute for true devotion, viewing them as the aim and measure of spiritual progress is a surefire way to go astray whether the sensible consolations in question be false or real. Obviously, chasing a false thrill is even more harmful than putting a false emphasis on true sensible consolations, but both can be very harmful.

I found the following wee explication by Dom Vital Lehodey on the nature of devotion, and the relationship between the essence and the accidents of devotion very helpful and inspiring, and so I just thought I’d share it. It is helpful to bear it in mind when dealing both with consolation and with aridity.

Devotion is the promptitude with which the will tends to the service of God, to prayer as well as to other duties. The whole substance and marrow of devotion consists in this promptitude, quickness, agility, holy ardor, generosity, and devotedness of the will. With this disposition of soul we possess the essence of devotion; without it we have only its phantom; and this is why this readiness of will is called substantial devotion.

Generally speaking, it is seasoned with a certain charm and sweetness; we tend with love and keen relish to the things of God, we are well with him; the soul is in peace, the heart joyful, and duty is easy. This sweetness is not devotion; for, without it, the will may be prompt in the service of God; but being superadded to devotion as accident to substance, it is called accidental devotion.

If it remain in the soul without passing into the senses, we have accidental spiritual devotion; if it is spread from the soul to the senses like the overflow of a vessel which is too full, we then have accidental sensible devotion – or, to express it more concisely, sensible devotion. Then the heart is dilated with joy and beats with more life, the eyes glisten and moisten with tears, the face is radiant, the voice full of emotion, all the senses filled with sweet impressions. And this sometimes reaches even to a kind of transport and of spiritual inebriation.

Sometimes, on the other hand, although the will does its duty with generosity, the senses are not affected; the soul is not pervaded by this sweetness, it feels itself abandoned; the mind is empty and has no ideas; the heart is cold and conceives only affections without relish; and the will remains without energy. This is aridity, dryness, abandonment, desolation.

According to this teaching, then, consolations are not devotion; for the prompt will, which is the essence of devotion, may very well subsist without consolations, or be altogether wanting in spite of their presence.

Dom Vital Lehodey, The Ways of Mental Prayer.

Of course, Dom Vital also discusses preternatural and natural causes of aridity, and included among the latter those stemming from sin and faults and distractions which we should correct, as well as preternatural (as opposed to supernatural) and natural causes of perceived consolations.

Posted by: Catholic of Thule | June 16, 2011

Handmade Sodalite wire wrap rosary.

I intend to add pictures of wire wrap rosaries made from the various gemstone I have available as I go alone and will hopefully eventually have pictures and prices of them all on the blog, with all the relevant posts linked under on the side bar.  The following is a Sodalite rosary. The light wasn’t great, and I may replace the images or repost whenever I have a new Sodalite rosary to photograph. At the moment, I have no finished ones left as they have all fled the nest so to speak.

A Sodalite rosary with the combination of bead caps pictured below may be ordered and costs NOK 610 plus the cost of whatever centre piece and crucifix one chooses from the list available. Any postage costs and transaction fees are added unto the price of the rosary itself. If you’re interested in buying a wire wrap rosary from me, you can contact me on There is a range of other stones not featured on the blog yet, and I could send lists by email. My wire wrap gemstone rosaries are made with sterling silver bead caps on all the Hail Mary beads and a combination of sterling silver and silver plated lead free pewter bead caps on the Our Father beads. They are all delivered with a wee velvet pouch which is included in the price.

Wire wrap rosaries take a long time to make but are very durable compared to ordinary wire (chain or eye hook) rosaries. I became interested in them initially because I was myself fed up with my chain rosaries becoming unhooked all the time, having to fix them and then weakening the wires and hooks through all this non-prayer related handling.  With the wire wrap method, the loops are entirely enclosed, with the wire at one end of the loop wrapped around the other end a few times to make a fully closed loop with no wee gaps left for the wire to escape through and the loops to become unhooked (as opposed to the more commonly used initially more or less  tightly closed eye hooks/chains which in my experience often get pulled with use, causing a larger gap and thus weaker connections).

I should mention that prices may of course be subject to change in the future and I may forget to update this post, but current prices will obviously be cited whenever anyone wants to place an order. Once an order has been accepted at a certain price, that is the price which will be charged for it. While I certainly do not expect them to break easily and without unduly rough handling, I offer a guarantee of free repair for the first year. The customer will need to get the rosary to me but I cover the cost of return postage for the first year. After a year, I will be happy  to do the actual repair work for free provided I am still in a position to do the repairs, but the customer will need to cover the cost of postage both ways and the cost of materials.

In addition to the Sodalite, Malachite and Carnelian beads already featured on the blog, I have the following gemstones available: Black Onyx, Blue Onyx, Red Tigereye, Howlite, Blue Lace Agate and Snowflake Obsidian. I also have Hematine, the manmade version of Hematite.

Older Posts »