Happy Groundhog Day!

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What a gloriously silly event Groundhog Day is, when a nation turns its eye upon the predictive power of a large rodent seeing, or not seeing, his shadow.  It is completely ridiculous and long may we be a country that has time for the innocently ridiculous every now and then!





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  1. Indeed! A worthy cousin of the “your keys are in the last place you’d look” and “if you do a bunch of preparation for failure you’re more likely to succeed, just from Murphy’s law.”

  2. I have a hard time sleeping in a room with an alarm clock Don, so I have always enjoyed that scene. Fortunately I am normally up between 4:00 AM and 4:30 AM, so alarm clocks are superfluous as far as I am concerned!

  3. May the favor of God be upon us….and may the winter end within 6weeks.
    Happy GH day and blessings to all who’s hearts are open to God’s will.

  4. I like the Catholic Candlemas way of predicting the nearness of Spring. If the weather is good on Candlemas, Spring will arrive later, and if the weather is bad on Candlemas, Spring will arrive earlier. Leave it to the protties to try to usurp a good Catholic custom.

  5. Well, the weather was bad in western Pennsylvania….16 degrees when I left for work at 6AM and 19 degrees when I came home at 4:30.

    Today has different meanings for me. My dad would have been 81 today. He has been gone for 24 years.

    As mentioned, today is Candlemas, the last day that Christmas is observed in majority Catholic countries. We keep our Nativity set out until today, light a candle and say a prayer before putting it away until Advent. As I’m 54, I’ve seen most of the Christmases I will see in this life.

    Groundhog Day is, I think, not an invention of Protestants, but rather the irreverence that one can find in my neck of the woods. Punxsutawney really isn’t far from where Fr. Demetrius Gallitzin performed his saintly work as a priest in the earliest days of Western Pennsylvania.

    As usual, I copy and paste a couple of prayers from the St. John Cantius website – pieces that are appropriate for today. Lent is right around the corner.

    In any case, when Candlemas is finished, all feelings of Christmas give way to the penitential feelings of Septuagesima and then Lent. The English poet, Robert Herrick (A.D. 1591-1674), sums it up in his poem “Ceremony Upon Candlemas Eve”—and reveals a folktale in the process:

    Ceremony Upon Candlemas Eve

    Down with the rosemary, and so
    Down with the bays and misletoe ;
    Down with the holly, ivy, all,
    Wherewith ye dress’d the Christmas Hall :
    That so the superstitious find
    No one least branch there left behind :
    For look, how many leaves there be
    Neglected, there (maids, trust to me)
    So many goblins you shall see.

    This very ancient carol also speaks of the departure of Christmas on this day. It is called “I Am Christmas,” and was written by James Ryman, a Franciscan Friar, ca. 1492. Note that the reference to Hallowtide (the days of the dead centering around All Saints Day) here refers to the fact that it was during Hallowtide that monarchs used to announce where they would be spending Christmas.

    I Am Christmas

    Here have I dwelled with more or lass
    From Hallowtide till Candelmas,
    And now must I from you hens pass;
    Now have good day.

    I take my leve of king and knight,
    And erl, baron, and lady bright;
    To wilderness I must me dight;
    Now have good day!

    And at the good lord of this hall
    I take my leve, and of gestes all;
    Me think I here Lent doth call;
    Now have good day!

    And at every worthy officere,
    Marshall, panter, and butlere
    I take my leve as for this yere;
    Now have good day!

    Another yere I trust I shall
    Make mery in this hall,
    If rest and peace in England fall;
    Now have good day!

    But oftentimes I have herd say
    That he is loth to part away
    That often biddeth ‘Have good day!”;
    Now have good day!

    Now fare ye well, all in fere,
    Now fare ye well for all this yere;
    Yet for my sake make ye good chere;
    Now have good day!

    Let us pray then humbly to the glorious Virgin Mary, which is comfort to them that forsake their sins, that she will make our peace to the blessed Son and impetre and get of him remission of all our sins, and after this life to come to the glory and joy of heaven, to the which bring us the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Amen.

    Tomorrow is the Feast of St. Blaise. Be sure to go to Mass and have your throat blessed if you can. I’ll be stuck at work

  6. James wrote: “I like the Catholic Candlemas way of predicting the nearness of Spring…”
    Do you know the following Scottish rhymes?

    If Candlemas day be dry and fair,
    The half o’ winter ‘s to come and mair,
    If Candlemas day be wet and foul,
    The half of winter’s gane at Yule.
    If Candlemas Day is bright and clear,
    There’ll be twa winters in the year.

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