In July 2019 I was reassigned to be the pastor of St. John Vianney Parish in South Burlington. Even in my last years in the Northeast Kingdom I was glad to produce a few blog posts a year at TrinityParishInBarton.blogspot.com. All of those posts are still up, but I have started this new blog page, UbiPetrusVT.com. There are multiple theological topics, and other happenings, I’m eager to blog about when I find the time. One or two pieces of scriptural musings are already near complete. Maybe once a month I will find time to post some perspective, or information pertinent to Catholics in Vermont.
As for the blog name, Ubi Petrus, VT, it comes from a phrase of Saint Ambrose of Milan. The full phrase goes “ubi Petrus, ibi Ecclsia,” meaning “where there is Peter, there is the Church.” If I’m allowed to make a play on the phrase of Saint Ambrose, I would say that the Church indeed IS HERE in Vermont, where therefore St. Peter is also (along with the whole Communion of Saints and the Blessed Mother)! If I’m further allowed, as a Catholic priest of the Diocese of Burlington, to boast of our connections to Saint Peter, I will do so by telling of our first bishop’s devotion to the Prince of the Apostles.
Bishop Louis DeGoesbriand – bishop from the founding of the Diocese in 1953 until his death in 1899 – indeed had great devotion to Saint Peter. He convinced pope Leo XIII to give to the Diocese of Burlington – from the relics of the chains of St. Peter – a link of the chains of St. Peter, which had been stored away in Rome for centuries. Pope Leo XIII granted the link, and it has been with the Diocese ever since. More can be told about this later.
For now, I say again welcome to UbiPetrusVT. I hope the blog grows and that you find it beneficial.
To my fellow Catholics in Vermont, to my brothers and sisters in Christ all over the world… happy Feast of the Chair of St. Peter.
Fr. Timothy Naples (2/22/20).
Pictured: a 19th century sketch of the reliquary for the link of the chains of St. Peter. This original reliquary is still used to display the link at the Diocesan Cathedral. The relic link is held in the very center of inner decorative piece. Around the inside is a longer chain fabricated at the request of Bishop DeGoesbriand, as a replica of the relics venerated from ancient times as the chains of St. Peter’s imprisonment. (Sketch is taken from a publication by Bishop DeGoesbriand, Fac Simile of Saint Peter’s Chains, Free Press Association Printers and Binders, Burlington, 1897).