November 20, 2019

The Long Awaited Return of the Tridentine Mass to St. Finbar Church in Bath Beach, Brooklyn

Saint Finbar RC Church
Photos by Cindy Brolsma and New York Scugnizzo
The plan on Sunday was to attend High Mass at Holy Innocents Church (128 West 37th St.) in Manhattan, briefly mingle with friends at coffee hour, then bolt back to Bath Beach, Brooklyn for the first Traditional Latin Mass to be celebrated in 49 years at St. Finbar Church (138 Bay 20th St.). However, due to subway track maintenance and the MTA’s less than stellar bus and shuttle service I could not make it into the city in time. One cannot help but wonder why two hours is not enough time to get from one part of city to another?

Looking to avoid a similar commuting fiasco (and having to go to a local Novus Ordo Mass), I decided to go to St. Finbar’s straight away. Good thing I did, because I actually walked the distance before spotting a bus.
The Sanctuary and High Altar
Annoyed with the MTA, my real grievance is with the current state of the Catholic Church. Unfortunately, you expect bad service from a bureaucratic government agency; but why must one have to travel hours, passing several other churches on the way, just to be able to attend a Tridentine Mass? If made available at every church, the way it should be, traditionalists (i.e. Catholics) wouldn’t have to go gallivanting around the city every Sunday or holy day.

Unquestionably worth all the effort, we’ll continue to support the Traditional Mass wherever it is held and will not rest until its celebrated everywhere.
Parishioners filled the pews around the scaffolding
Now with the unpleasantries out of the way, let’s discuss the more pertinent part of the day.

Arriving early at St. Finbar, I was finally able to see the newly restored nave and sanctuary with the lights on. Having only visited the bedimmed church on Holy Thursdays, it is one of our favorite places to spend time at the Altar of Repose. Still under renovation (they are currently cleaning the ceiling murals), Pastor Fr. Michael Louis Gelfant has done an amazing job restoring the grandeur of the old church by reinstalling the altar rails and pews, as well as uncovering the original marble floor with inlaid roses.
Our new friends Vincent Maida, and Gianna and John Mazzola 
Warmly welcomed, longtime parishioner Vincent Maida was kind enough to show me some of the terrific restoration work he did for the church. In addition to touching up the Stations of the Cross, the former employee of the Guggenheim Museum restored two heavily damaged oil paintings depicting the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the narthex.
The restored paintings in the narthex
Following the Asperges rite, the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass was celebrated by Fr. Rafael Perez, the Parochial Vicar at Divine Mercy Parish, in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Sitting in choir, Fr. Gelfant was the homilist. The sacred ministers were dutifully assisted by Michael and Vinnie, who regularly serve at Our Lady of Peace Church (522 Carroll St.) in Gowanus, Brooklyn. The motets and Mass setting were composed and chanted by Director of Music Alex Violette and Andrew Violette.
Our Lady of the Rosary of Pompeii and a Peruvian style St. Michael
Afterward, I had the pleasure to make the acquaintance of several parishioners, who were very enthused about the prospect of celebrating the Extraordinary Form of the Mass regularly at the church. Sadly, we learned that Fr. Gelfant is scheduled for reassignment and will be leaving in January. Understandably, there are serious concerns that all the improvements he made at St. Finbar are in jeopardy. We pray for the incoming Pastor.
Saint Thérèse of Lisieux and Saint Rose of Lima
Thank you to all the members of the congregation for your warmth and hospitality, it was a tremendous joy to celebrate our faith together. God bless Fr. Gelfant, we wish him great success at his new parish and will keep him in our prayers. Special thanks to my friend Cindy Brolsma from Brooklyn Latin Mass for giving me a lift home and helping me avoid another frustrating misadventure with public transportation.

~ Giovanni di Napoli, November 19th, Feast of Santa Elisabetta d'Ungheria
Saint Gerard Majella and Saint Andrew the Apostle
Santissimo Crocifisso and Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception
As an aside, the 40 Hour Devotion will be celebrated at St. Finbar from Thursday 21st through Saturday 23rd.

Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima to Visit the Shrine Church of the Holy Innocents in New York City

November 19, 2019

Feast of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary

Evviva Santa Elisabetta d'Ungheria!
Photo by New York Scugnizzo
November 19th is the traditional Feast Day of Saint Elizabeth of Hungary, patron saint of nurses, the poor, the homeless and widows. Living a life of prayer and sacrifice, her compassion towards the sick and the poor endeared her to the whole of Christendom. To commemorate the occasion, I'm posting a Prayer to Saint Elizabeth of Hungary. The accompanying photo was taken at Most Precious Blood Church (109 Mulberry Street), the national shrine of San Gennaro, located in New York City's historic Little Italy.
Prayer to Saint Elizabeth of Hungary
Our father in heaven, Your servant, Saint Elizabeth brought care to the sick, food to the hungry and hope to the hopeless, grant us thy blessing that we may follow in her footsteps with love and joy in our hearts. Amen.

Photo of the Week: The Certosa di San Giacomo, Capri

Carthusian monastery founded in 1363 by Count Giacomo Arcucci
Photo by New York Scugnizzo

Giuseppe Petrosino — Saluting an Italian American Crime Fighter

Tuesday, November 19th (7pm–9pm)

Italian Charities of America
83-20 Queens Blvd.
Elmhurst, New York 11373

As part of the Italian American Speaker Series at the Italian Charities of America we welcome our guest speaker Anne T. Romano, Ph.D., author of Italian Americans in Law Enforcement, who will trace the life and legacy of Lt. Giuseppe Petrosino, beginning with his birth in Padula, Italy, his career in the NYPD, and the continuing significance of his legacy.

Admission is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Call for more information at 718-478-3100 or email us at info@Italiancharities.org. Check us out on the web: www.italiancharities.org; like us on Facebook and Instagram.

Solemn Mass in Honor of St. Francis Xavier in the Bronx, New York

November 18, 2019

The Once and Future Kingdom

Screen grab of Prince Filiberto's televised address
On Thursday, November 14th, the Pretender to the Italian throne, Prince Emanuele Filiberto, announced the return of the Royal Family to Italy in a live televised address. Despite providing no information on how “The Royal Family is coming back,” the teaser created a brief stir in monarchist circles, prompting texts and phone calls from friends. After doing a little fact-checking, it quickly became apparent the whole thing was an unbecoming publicity stunt to promote either the upcoming second season of The Crown on Netflix or a new line of clothing by Global Intuition called Casa Savoia. Uninterested in either, I stopped looking into the matter.

As unlikely as it may seem today, I do believe we will see a restoration of the monarchy in Italy one day. However, it won’t be the disgraced House of Savoy we see restored, it will be the Royal House of Bourbon-Two Sicilies in a newly independent Regno dell Due Sicilie. [Cue ridicule and scorn.]

For those of us who are traditionally minded, the Bourbons of Naples are anything but a footnote in history, they are a symbol of authority, sovereignty and justice. They represent a possible future in the face of the present crises that threatens the remnants of our moribund civilization. A return to traditional religious and aristocratic principles, embodied by There Sicilian Majesties, will be our foundation to confront globalism and the unholy secular worldview currently plaguing our society with wanton materialism and widespread apathy.

Thankfully, Massimo d’Azeglio’s often quoted proposition that “We have made Italy; now we must make Italians” still rings hallow. After more than 150 years of social engineering and cultural leveling, Italian unification, which suppressed and destroyed, with varying degrees of success, the local history, culture and identity of the Duosiciliano people, has yet to be completely realized.

We continue to see a gradual awakening, as people across the peninsula (Metternich’s famous “geographic expression”) abandon today’s ersatz culture and discover and embrace their true identity (Neapolitan, Venetian, et al.). To be sure, too many are effete and supine, but for us the growing number of Duosiciliani who have embraced the counter-revolutionary neo-Bourbon cause is what really matters. For the sake of our future, it is important for us to build on these gains.

The south needs to return to its austere roots. This is not some sentimental longing for an idyllic past, but a stratagem for a future based on the immortal principles of spiritual authority (the Church) and temporal power (the Monarchy). With precious little worth safeguarding after unification, Southern Italy needs to diverge from this nihilistic path of modernity with its sterile sybaritic values (as opposed to invigorating spiritual ones) and look to the restoration of its Catholic Monarchy (as opposed to democratic-liberal or Marxist falsehoods) to bring about a well ordered (hierarchical), organic and sovereign state.

Altar and Throne! is our battle cry.


~ Giovanni di Napoli, November 17th, Feast of San Gregorio Taumaturgo

Relics of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina to Visit Parish in Tuckahoe, New York

November 17, 2019

Praying for the Repose of the Souls of the Deceased Friars and Sisters of the Order of Preachers

The catafalque, a symbolic funeral bier with black funeral pall and candles
Photos by New York Scugnizzo and Peter Clemente
Dies iræ, dies illa,
Solvet sæclum in favilla:
Teste David cum Sybilla.
Quantum tremor est futurus,
Quando Judex est venturus,
Cuncta strict discussurus.
 *

Wednesday, November 13th, my Constantinian brethren and I joined some 200 parishioners at St. Vincent Ferrer Church (869 Lexington Ave.) in Manhattan for their Annual Sung Requiem Mass 
in the Dominican Rite. Sponsored by the New York Purgatorial Society, the Catholic Artists Society, and the Society of St. Hugh of Cluny, the Mass was offered for all deceased Friars and Sisters of the Order of Preachers (Dominican Order).

Before Mass, you can hear a pin drop
Arriving early, I was able to explore the imposing Gothic church a little more than last time I was here. Visiting all the shrines and chapels, I was able to light candles, invoke the saints, and peacefully meditate and pray for the remission of all the sins of the poor and forgotten Souls in Purgatory.
Spending a little extra time by the statue of St. Jude Thaddaeus, I also prayed for the intensions of an ailing loved one, whose condition recently took a turn for the worse.

The Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass was sung by Celebrant and Homilist Fr. Sebastian White, O.P., who was dutifully assisted by several servers and the Schola Cantorum of St. Vincent Ferrer under the masterly direction of Mr. James D. Wetzel. At the end of Mass, Fr. White donned the black cope and offered absolution at the catafalque.

Afterward, all were invited to break bread at the reception held in the parish hall downstairs. Guests mingled, enjoyed some champagne, and partook in the wide variety of canapés, dips and other tasty hors d’oeuvres.

Thank you Very Rev. Walter Wagner, O.P., Pastor of St. Vincent Ferrer and St. Catherine of Siena Parish, and members of the congregation for your warmth and hospitality. God bless all the organizers for sponsoring the Mass and their righteous mission to promote prayer and succor for the Holy Souls in Purgatory. As always, it was a great joy to celebrate our faith together.

~ Giovanni di Napoli, Saturday, November 16, Feast of Santa Geltrude

* Excerpt from the Dies iræ (Day of Wrath) sequentia, chant for the dead

The day of wrath, that day
will dissolve all in ashes
as foretold by David with the Sibyl.
How much tremor there will be
when the Judge will come,
investigating all strictly.
Statues of St. Jude Thaddaeus and St. Dominic de Guzmán
Bye-altar with painting of The Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple
Statues of the Crucifixion and St. Vincent Ferrer
(Above & below) At the reception, a good time was had by all
* * *
For more information about the New York Purgatorial Society visit www.nypurgatorial.com or write to nypurgatorial@yahoo.com

For more information about the Society of St. Hugh of Cluny visit www.sthughofcluny.org or write to contact@sthughofcluny.org

For more information about the Catholic Artists Society visit www.catholicartistssociety.org or write to catholicartistssociety@gmail.com

Also see: 

• Praying for the Repose of the Souls of the Faithful Departed with the New York Purgatorial Society

Feast of San Gregorio Taumaturgo

Viva San Gregorio!
November 17th is the Feast Day of San Gregorio Taumaturgo (St. Gregory the wonderworker), Bishop of Neocaesarea and Confessor. Invoked against earthquakes, floods and desperate causes, he is the patron saint of Laureana di Borrello (RC), San Gregorio (RC), and Stalettì (CZ) in Calabria. According to tradition, during the iconoclasm of the eighth century the body of San Gregorio was cast into the Black Sea at Pontus in Asia Minor. Instead of sinking, the casket containing the saint’s relics miraculously crossed the sea, pushed by the hands of angels, to the sacred Grotta di San Gregorio on the shores of the Gulf of Squillace, an inlet of the Ionian Sea along the coast of Catanzaro. Renowned for his many miracles, the great Saint is venerated in both the Eastern and Western churches. To commemorate the occasion, I’m posting a prayer to St. Gregory the wonderworker. The accompanying photo of the 12th century Byzantine Icon, possibly from Constantinople, comes courtesy of the State Hermitage Museum, in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Prayer to St. Gregory the wonderworker
O holy Saint Gregory, confessor and priest of the Lord, I pray thee that thou wouldst intercede with our Lord God for me, that, being purified from all vice, I may please Him in all things, and that He will grant me the peace possessed by all His servants. Amen

November 16, 2019

Feast of San Giuseppe Moscati

Evviva San Giuseppe!
November 16th is the Feast Day of San Giuseppe Moscati, the "Holy Physician of Naples." Born on July 25th, 1880 in Benevento, Giuseppe was the seventh of nine children of Rosa (née de Luca, Marchesi dei Roseto) and Francesco Moscati, a magistrate from Santa Lucia di Serino. He studied medicine and surgery at the University of Naples, graduating summa cum laude in 1903. In 1906, during an eruption of Mount Vesuvius, he risked life and limb evacuating patients from the crumbling Riuniti Hospital in Torre del Greco.
With the outbreak of WWI, Dr. Moscati volunteered his services and treated thousands of wounded soldiers. After the war, he returned to his practice in Naples caring for the poor at the Hospital for the Incurables. Not only did he refuse payment from his impoverished patients, Dr. Moscati would often give them money for their prescriptions. He tragically died on April 12th, 1927 at the age of 46. Beatified on November 16th, 1975 by Pope Paul VI, he was canonized just sixty years after his death on October 25th, 1987 by Pope John Paul II. He is the patron saint of physicians and bachelors. To commemorate the occasion I'm posting a prayer to Saint Giuseppe Moscati. The accompanying photo is from a friends private shrine. 
Prayer to Saint Giuseppe Moscati
Dear St. Joseph Moscati, true model of Christian doctors, in the exercise of your medical profession, you always took care of both the body and soul of every patient. Look on us, who have recourse to your heavenly intercession, and obtain for us both physical and spiritual health, and a share in the dispensation of heavenly favors. Soothe the pains of our suffering people; give comfort to the sick, consolation to the afflicted and hope to the despondent. May our young people find in you an ideal, our workers an example, the aging a comfort, the dying the hope of eternal salvation. To all of us be a pattern of industriousness, honesty and charity; so we may comply with our Christian duties and glorify God our Father. Amen.

Feast of Santa Geltrude la Grande

St. Gertrude the Great, ora pro nobis!
November 16th is the Feast Day of Santa Geltrude la Grande (1256–c. 1302), Virgin, Mystic and Benedictine nun. One of many co-patrons of Naples, she was an early devotee of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and is often invoked for the poor and forgotten Souls in Purgatory. To commemorate the occasion I’m posting The Prayer of St. Gertrude. Given to her in a vision by Our Lord Jesus Christ, it is believed every time this powerful prayer is prayed with heartfelt devotion souls are released from Purgatory. Evviva Santa Geltrude!

The Prayer of St. Gertrude the Great

Eternal Father, I offer Thee the Most Precious Blood of Thy Divine Son, Jesus, in union with the Masses said throughout the world today, for all the Holy Souls in Purgatory, for sinners everywhere, for sinners in the Universal Church, those in my own home and within my family. Amen.

November 15, 2019

Brief Musings

Short on time, but itching to post

Chivalry

Having been a while since we last posted a “Ponderable Quote,” I thought we would start again with a few brief excerpts from Émile Théodore Léon Gautier’s (1832-1897) Chivalry: The Everyday Life of the Medieval Knight (Tumblr House, 2015). I just started reading the book, but I’ve already found plenty worth sharing. Here are a few choice bits:
There is more than one kind of Chivalry, and lance thrust are not everything! In default of the sword, we have the pen: failing the pen, speech: and in default of speech, honor, in our lives! (P. 6)
[Chivalry] is less an institution than an ideal.                                      Many volumes have been written upon this noble subject, and a few words will be sufficient to define clearly chivalry and the knight. "Chivalry is the Christian form of the military profession: the knight is the Christian soldier." (p. 7)
In legendary lore the embodiment of chivalry is Roland: in history it is Godfrey de Bouillon. There are no more worthy names than these. (p. 20)
This highly praised code has unfortunately never been formulated with sufficient clearness and it is too true that the pure gold of ancient chivalry was very quickly alloyed. In the twelfth century—one is too apt to forget the date—the romance of the Round Table spread amongst us the taste for a less wild but also a less manly chivalry. The elegancies of love in them occupied the place formerly reserved for the brutality of war and the spirit of adventure in them extinguished the spirit of the crusades. One will never know how much harm this cycle of the "Round Table" inflicted on us. It civilized us no doubt; but effeminated us. It took away from us our old aim, which was the tomb of Christ gained by blood and battle. For the austerities of the Supernatural it substituted the tinsel of the Marvelous. It is to this dangerous but charming literature that we owe the theatrical, the boastful, rash chivalry which proved so fatal during the Thirty Years War. It was against it and not against our old Epopœia that Cervantes pointed his pencil, and we must confess that some complaints of the great satirist were not without foundation. Thanks to this regrettable encroachment we now entertain a false idea of the true chivalry, which we confuse with a certain delicate and sometimes an excessive gallantry. The time has arrived to protest against such an error. (p. 22)
Holy Name Society
An unexpected, but greatly appreciated gift
Recently invited to a Holy Name Society meeting at the Shrine Church of St. Bernadette (8201 13th Ave.) in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn, I was unexpectedly presented with a terrific hardback photo album capturing all the highlights from the Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary of Pompeii. A very thoughtful keepsake, the book brought back a lot of great memories of a supremely special day.

Even better than the album, I was happy to learn that the restored painting was finally mounted on the wall of the baptistery. Still abuzz about the Mass, the parish is serious about reestablishing this important southern Italian tradition and plans for next year’s celebration are already in the works.
The newly restored painting of Our Lady of the Rosary
of Pompeii now hangs in the baptistery
Personal Patrons

A curious friend asks: Who were the personal patrons "too numerous to name" in our recent post about Sant'Uberto? Not one to publish inquiries online, I made an exception this time because I regret not giving all my holy benefactors their due. In order of acquisition:

Santa Patrizia di Costantinopoli (St. Patricia); Sant’Antonio Abate (St. Anthony the Great); Santa Lucia Martire (St. Lucy); San Rocco (St. Roch); San Vito Martire (St. Vito); Sant’Eustachio Martire (St. Eustace); Santa Margherita Maria Alacoque (St. Margaret Mary Alacoque); San Lorenzo Martire (St. Lawrence); Sant’Andrea Apostolo (St. Andrew the Apostle); San Bonifacio (St. Boniface); and Santa Geltrude la Grande (St. Gertrude the Great).

As for the “others” I alluded to in the list of martial saints, they are: San Giovanni da Capestrano (St. John of Capistrano); San Lorenzo da Brindisi (St. Lawrence); San Sebastiano Martire (St. Sebastian); San Vincenzo Martire (St. Vincent, the Martyr of Craco); and San Maurizio Martire (St. Maurice).

Christus Vincit

His Excellency Bishop Athanasius Schneider’s highly anticipated Christus Vincit: Christ’s Triumph Over the Darkness of the Age (Angelico Press, 2019) is now available at the Shrine Church of the Holy Innocents (128 W 37th St.) in Manhattan. All set to buy a copy online, I picked one up after Sunday Mass instead. Since I’m currently reading Chivalry delivery speed was not really an issue, however if ever given the choice I prefer to shop locally. This is especially true when given the opportunity to support Holy Innocents, “The little Catholic Church around the corner” at the crossroads of the world.

~ Giovanni di Napoli, November 13, Feast of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini

November 13, 2019

Feast of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini

America's first saint
November 13th is the Feast Day of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, patron saint of immigrants. The first United States citizen to be canonized, she came to America on March 31, 1889 at the urging of Pope Leo XIII to help Italian immigrants. She founded numerous institutions dedicated to caring for the poor, the uneducated and the sick, including the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Photos by New York Scugnizzo
To commemorate the occasion I'm posting a Prayer to Mother Cabrini. The accompanying photos were taken at the Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini Shrine in Washington Heights, New York.
Prayer to Mother Cabrini
Almighty and Eternal Father, Giver of all Gifts, show us Thy mercy, and grant, we beseech Thee, through the merits of Thy faithful Servant, Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, that all who invoke her intercession may obtain what they desire according to the good pleasure of Thy Holy Will. (here name your request) St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, beloved spouse of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, intercede for us that the favor we now ask may be granted.

Traditional Latin Mass in Bath Beach, Brooklyn

Missa Cantata
Sunday, November 17th
1:30 pm

St. Finbar RC Church
138 Bay 20th street (entrance @ Benson Ave)
Brooklyn NY 11214

November 12, 2019

Celebrating the Feast of Sant’Agrippino di Napoli

Sanfedisti enjoying the great outdoors
Photos by New York Scugnizzo
Saturday, November 9th — Gathering in the early morning at the Shrine Church of the Holy Innocents (128 West 37th St.) in Manhattan, members and friends of the Fratelli della Santa Fede (Brothers of the Holy Faith) celebrated the Feast of Sant’Agrippino di Napoli with prayer, fellowship and a highly anticipated cultural excursion to Casa del Caciocavallo Farms (10 Orchard Dr.) in Gardiner, New York.
We came prepared to pray at Holy Innocents
Expecting a quiet opportunity for prayer and meditation at the church, we discovered a handful of parishioners already in the process of praying the 2,000 Hail Mary Devotion, which is offered every second Saturday of the month from 6am to 4pm. In addition to the Holy Rosary and our usual prayers of thanks and praise, we included petitions to Sant’Agrippino for the happy repose of the souls of the faithful departed.
Scenic Casa del Caciocavallo Farms
Deeply Committed to acts of Heroic Charity, the Sanfedisti regularly offer to God our satisfactory works and suffrages, as well as invoke the saints to assist the poor and forgotten Souls in Purgatory.
One of the stars of the show
After our supplications, we began our long trek Upstate, with a brief detour in Hoboken, New Jersey to pick-up a straggler. Once out of the city, our journey was all smooth sailing. Taking in the beautiful countryside and changing foliage, our party listened to music and discussed a wide range of topics, including the recent poor form and tumultuous atmosphere surrounding the Napoli football club. Partenopei fans to a man, our pessimism in the current squad proved prescient as the disappointing 0-0 draw later in the day against lowly Genoa confirmed. Since we’re adults and have way more important things to worry about, the team’s failure to get a result did not dampen the excitement of our trip.
Packing up the cheese
Welcomed to the CDC Farms by owner and cheese maker Freddy Destefano, we were brought to his modest warehouse, where the artisan caciocavallo is hung to age for no less than sixty days. Made with fresh curd from Hudson Valley cow’s milk, the tasty teardrop shaped cheese are heated and stretched by hand before being brined. Stocking up on the southern Italian delicacy, our group bought several cases to share and enjoy with family and friends back home. Unable to wait, we carved one up on the car ride home.
Loading our haul into the car
Having made good time, we were in no rush to return to the city, so we did a little exploring and ended up at Tony’s Place, a nearby sheep and goat farm our friend Frank Cicc’ has been patronizing over the past two decades for his freshly slaughtered paschal lamb. Originally butchers from Corona, Queens, Tony, his wife Emma, and their dog Lily warmly welcomed us into their home for some espresso with Sambuca. Before leaving, our gracious hosts let us explore their rustic farm and see some of their ruminant livestock.
Tony and Emma
Not quite over, our entertaining day trip continued back in Hoboken. Dropping off Cicc’ and his cases of cheese, we were invited in to join him for some caffè and a shot of Anice liqueur from Sassano (Alfonso Penna). When his daughter Annamaria learned about our little jaunt to Tony’s, she shared a childhood story of how her grandmother killed her pet rabbit for dinner. This prompted the rest of us to recall our own affecting stories of slaughtered pets. The death of Carmine’s beloved goat "Billy" was definitely the most graphic, if not the saddest.
This curious fellow wasn't camera shy
Bidding Cicc’ and Annamaria farewell, the rest of us moved on to Carmine’s workshop to unload his cheese and catch a glimpse of his vast collection of presepio pieces. An avid crèche builder, Carmine is famous in Hoboken for his annual Christmas display. In 2016 his work was featured in the Hoboken Historical Museum, who published the artist’s oral history chapbook, I Imagine My Town Being the Town Inside, Recollections of Carmine Percontino. Revealing his plans for this year's tableau, we got a sneak peek of his budding creation. Still early days, we’re sure it’s going to be magnificent.
A friendly little critter greeted us by the fence
Getting late and tired, the rest of us wanted to beat the traffic and get back to our loved ones in New York. Normally we would all go out for dinner or stay at someone’s house to fête the saint, but we were too full from all the cheese we ate in the car. Sant’Agrippino must have been with us, because we got home with minimal delays.
Snacking on some caciocavallo in the car. Imbibing some Anice at Cicc's house
Later that evening, when my appetite returned, I couldn’t resist another go at the caciocavallo. With one of our earlier conversations about the different ways we enjoy eating the prized cheese replaying in my head, I decided to roast mine over hot coals and spread it on some toasted bread. Paired with a cluster of grapes and a glass of Lacryma Christi wine from Feudi di San Gregorio, it was the perfect way to end our celebration of the glorious third-century Bishop of Naples. Viva Sant’Agrippino!

~ Giovanni di Napoli, November 11, Feast of San Martino di Tours
Carmine revealed his plans for this year's tableau 
He has an impressive collection of presepio pieces
A section of his outdoor crèche