Holy Vocations



Saturday, April 19, 2014

H/T Fr. Peter Carota

1. “It is for their sakes that I sanctify myself, so that they, too, may be sanctified by the truth” (Jn 17:19).

Do I really take holiness seriously in my priesthood? Am I convinced that the success of my priestly ministry comes from God and that, with the grace of the Holy Spirit, I have to identify myself with Christ and give my life for the salvation of the world?

2. “This is my body” (Mt 26:26).

Is the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass the centre of my spiritual life? Do I prepare well to offer Holy Mass? Do I devoutly offer the Holy Mass? Do I make an act of thanksgiving after Mass? Is the Mass the centre of my day in giving thanks and praise to God for his blessings? Do I have recourse to his goodness? Do I make reparation for my sins and for those of all mankind?

3. “Zeal for your house consumes me” (Jn 2:17).

Do I celebrate the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass according to the rites and rubrics established by the Church? Do I celebrate Holy Mass with a right intention and according to the approved liturgical books? Am I attentive to the Blessed Sacrament conserved in the tabernacle and careful to renew it periodically? Do I pay due attention to the sacred vessels and ensure their purification and conservation? Do I wear the dignified, sacred vestments prescribed by the Church? Am I conscious that I act in persona Christi Capitis ?

4. “Remain in my love” (Jn 15:9).

Do I enjoy being in the presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, in meditation and in silent adoration? Am I faithful to the daily visit to the Blessed Sacrament? Is the tabernacle my true treasure?

5. “Explain the parable to us” (Mt 13:36).

Do I carefully make a daily meditation and try to overcome all distractions which separate me from God? Do I seek illumination from the Lord whom I pray? Do I assiduously meditate on the Sacred Scriptures? Do I carefully say my habitual prayers? Do I prepare my homily and preach the truth even though I will be persecuted for it.

6. “It is necessary “pray always and without tiring” (Lk 18:1)

Do I pray all the hours of the Breviary every day in an dignified, attentive and devout manner? Am I faithful to my commitment to Christ in this important aspect of my priesthood, praying in the name of the entire Church?

7. “Come and follow me” (Mt 19:21).

Is the Lord Jesus Christ the true love of my life? Do I joyfully observe my commitment to love before God in celibate continence? Do I give in to impure thoughts, desires or actions? Do I indulge in improper conversation? Do I look at pornography? Have I allowed myself to be in the proximate occasion of sin against chastity? Do I observe custody of the eyes? Have I been prudent in my dealings with the various categories of persons? Does my life represent for the faithful a true witness to the fact that holy purity is possible, fruitful and joyful?  Do I offer Holy Mass in Mortal Sin?

8. “ Who are you?” (Jn 1:20).

In my daily life, am I weak, lazy or indolent? Do my conversations conform to a sense of the natural and supernatural that a priest should have? Am I careful to ensure that there are no elements of vanity or superficiality in my life? Are all my actions consistent with my priestly state? Do I wear the cassock or clerics? Can people see by my clothing I am a priest?

9. “The Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head” (Mt. 8:20).

Do I love Christian poverty? Does my heart belong to God? Am I spiritually detached from everything else? Am I prepared to make sacrifices to better serve God? Am I prepared to give up my comforts, personal plans, and legitimate contacts, for God? Do I possess superfluous things? Do I make unnecessary expenditure or am I taken over by consumerism? Do I use my free time so as to be close to God remembering that I am always a priest – even at these times of rest or vacation? Do I waste time on Facebook, the web, watching movies or TV?

10. “You have hidden these things from the wise and learned and revealed them to mere children” (Mt 11:25).

Am I guilty of the sins of pride: spiritual difficulties, susceptibility, irritation, unwillingness to forgive, tendencies to despondency, etc.? Do I ask God to give me the virtue of humility?

11. “And there flowed out blood and water” (Jn 19:34).

Am I convinced that when I act “in the person of Christ” that I am directly involved with the same Body of Christ, the Church? Can I sincerely say that I love the Church? Can I sincerely say that I strive with joy for her growth? Am I concerned for her interests, those of all her members and for the whole human race? Is Jesus Christ really my King I obey?

12. “You are Peter” (Mt 16:18).

Nihil sine Episcopo – nothing without the Bishop – was a saying of St Ignatius of Antioch. Are these words at the root of my ministry? Do I receive orders, counsels or correction from my Ordinary with docility? Do I pray often for the Holy Father? Am I in full communion with the Church’s teachings?

13. “Love one another” (Jn 13:34).

Have I been charitable in dealing with my brother priests? Does my egoism leave me indifferent to them? Have I criticised my brother priests? Have I supported those who are morally or physically ill? Am I committed to fraternal action so that no one is ever left alone? Do I treat all my brother priests and all of the laity with the charity and patience of Christ?

14. “I am the way, the truth and the life” (Jn 14:6).

Is my knowledge of the teaching of the Church as comprehensive as it should be? Do I assimilate and transmit her teachings? Am I conscious that to teach something contrary to the Magisterium, solemn or ordinary, is gravely abusive and causes damage to the faithful?  Do I withhold Catholic teachings out of fear of people getting angry and leaving the parish?  Do I let people dress immodestly?  Am I a priest who pleases people rather than pleasing God?

15. “Go and sin no more” (Jn 8:11).

Proclamation of the Word leads the faithful to the Sacraments. Do I regularly go to Confession? Do I confess my sins in accordance with my state of life and because of the sacred things with which I am involved? Do I generously offer times for the Sacrament of Penance? Am I available to the faithful for spiritual direction and do I set particular times aside for this purpose? Do I carefully prepare to instruct in catechesis? Do I preach with zeal and with the love of God? Do I make sure my parish’s catechism is Catholic doctrine?

16. “He called those to himself whom he willed and these went with him” (Mk 3:13).

Am I careful to promote vocations to the priesthood and to the religious life? Do I promote a greater awareness of the universal call to holiness among the faithful? Do I encourage the faithful to pray for vocations and for the sanctification of the clergy?

17. “The Man came not to be served but to serve” (Mt 20:28).

Have I sought to devote myself to others and serve them every day according to the demands of the Gospel? Do I give witness to the Lord’s charity by good works? Do I see the presence of Christ in the my Crosses and do I see in them the triumph of love? Is my daily activity marked by a spirit of service? Do I consider the exercise of my authority as a form of service?

18. “I thirst” (Jn 19:28).

Have I prayed and generously made sacrifices for the good of the conversion of the souls entrusted to my care by God? Do I discharge my pastoral duties? Am I solicitous for the salvation and sanctification of Holy Souls?

19. “Behold your son. Behold your mother” (Jn 19: 26-27).

Do I entrust myself completely to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Priests, with love and so to be able to love all the more her son Jesus Christ? Do I practice Marian devotion? Do I say the Rosary every day? Do I have recourse to her maternal intercession in my struggles with the devil, concupiscence, purity, and the world?

20. “Father, into your hands I commend my spirit” (Lk 23:44).

Am I solicitous in assisting and in administering the sacraments to the dying? In my personal meditation, in catechesis and in my preaching, do I give consideration to the Church’s teaching on the 4 Last Things (Death, Judgement, Heaven or Hell)? Do I ask for the grace of my own final perseverance? Do I ask the faithful to do likewise? Do I make frequent and devout suffrage for the souls in Purgatory?


Dominican Monastery of the Heart of Jesus (Louisiana) 2014 Holy Week & Easter Week EF Schedule

Friday, April 11, 2014


Inside Holy Ressurection Monastery (Byzantine)

Sunday, March 30, 2014

This Monastery is Romanian Catholic, Which many of you know is Byzantine and is considered the Eastern side of the Catholic church. If you know nothing about the eastern Church or you would like to know more, HRM has retreats you can attend. If you have never been to a Byzantine Catholic Church you should check it out! see if you can find one close to where you live. If you would like to go on a retreat to get away from the things of this world and try something new check out 

300 South 2nd Avenue
PO BOX 276
Saint Nazianz, WI 54232

Telephone: (920) 881-4009
Email: monks@hrmonline.org


Vestition of Four New Sisters Adorers of the Royal Heart of Jesus Christ

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Vestition of four new Sisters Adorers of the Royal Heart of Jesus Christ Sovereign Priest, on the Feast of St. Joseph, 2014 at the church of Sts. Michele e Gaetano in Florence, Italy. Please keep them and all the sisters in your prayers!


O Holy Spirit, Spirit of wisdom and divine love, impart Your knowledge, understanding, and counsel to youth that they may know the vocation wherein they can best serve God. Give them courage and strength to follow God's holy will. Guide their uncertain steps, strengthen their resolutions, shield their chastity, fashion their minds, conquer their hearts, and lead them to the vineyards where they will labor in God's holy service. Amen.


FSSP February 2014 Ordinations

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A grand total of 15 Seminarians of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Peter (FSSP) were received in the Subdiaconate in the first two weeks of February.

Pictured: 9 were ordained Feb. 15 by Abp. Haas, of Vaduz (Liechtenstein), in the parish church of Deuchelried, in Wangen in Allgäu (Baden-Württemberg), near the Wigratzbad seminary (Bavaria) -- 4 Frenchmen, 2 Canadians, 1 Colombian, 1 from the Dominican Republic, and 1 Austrian. 21 Seminarians received several minor orders in the same ceremony.


Priests and deacons ordained at La Reja seminary for the SSPX: December 2013

Sunday, January 26, 2014

An American priest from Miami was part of a bumper crop of priestly ordinations at the SSPX's seminary in Argentina in December.

In the image above, Fr. Baquerizo's maniturgium is bound around his hands by his mother after being were anointed with sacred chrism by the ordaining bishop. It is customary for a priestly son to honor his mother by giving her this linen maniturgium — and buried with upon her death.

Priests and deacons ordained at La Reja seminary for the SSPX

December 21st (2013) was a day of great rejoicing for the seminary of Our Lady Co-Redemptrix in La Reja, Argentina. For on that date, nine deacons (a number equaled only once in her history) were ordained priests by Bishop Bernard Tissier de Mallerais:
  • Fr. Aureo Mendes (Brazil)
  • Fr. Fernando Rivero (Argentina)
  • Fr. Pedro Roldan (Argentina)
  • Fr. Jose Maria Jimenez, (Spain)
  • Fr. Luis Rodriguez (Mexico)
  • Fr. Jose Mota (Mexico)
  • Fr. Jesus Estevez (Dominican Republic)
  • Fr. Pius Nanthambwe (Zimbabwe)
  • Fr. David Baquerizo (United States)
Also, four subdeacons were also raised to the diaconate:
  • Rev. Mr. Santiago Villanueva (Argentina)
  • Rev. Mr. Timothee de Bonnafos (France)
  • Rev. Mr. Fernando Moenckeberg (Chile)
  • Rev. Mr. Felipe Echazu (Argentina)

Newly-ordained American, Fr. David Baquerizo (originally a parishioner at the Shrine of St. Philomena in Miami, Florida), returned home two weeks later to say a first Mass on Sunday, January 5. The prior of Sanford, Florida, Fr. Marc Vernoy, made the 5-hour trip south to be his assistant priest in the Mass, and Fr. Pierre Duverger flew in from Platte City, Missouri to preach the sermon.
Since the Mass coincided with Fr. Baquerizo's 25th birthday, the jubilant parishioners prepared a special party to honor the event.

Source: SSPX


Saint Gregory Monastery: A Primitive Benedictive Community

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Taken from the website of the monastery:

The word "Monasticism" derives from the Greek "monos" which means "alone." The original Christian "monastics" (men and women) were hermits who fled normal human society to live "alone" with God in remote areas throughout Asia Minor, Africa, and Europe. A purely solitary life proved to be extremely challenging and even dangerous for most devotees, so monastics formed communities, transforming the search for God into a "family affair." Monastic observance was strengthened and enhanced by a life in common where prayer, worship, study, and labor were held together by fraternal charity and mutual support in this richly spiritual way of life. Monasteries became ideal local churches, where Christian life could be observed in a more intense form, away from the many distractions of common human society. By "leaving" the world, monks and nuns place themselves at the very heart of it, engaged in a continuous cycle of worship and prayer throughout the day and night for the needs of the Church and all of humanity, particularly for its great spiritual hunger. 

The life at Saint Gregory Monastery follows the spiritual doctrine taught in the Rule of Saint Benedict written in the Sixth Century A.D. The passage of time has rendered some details and practices obsolete, however the teaching of the Rule regarding obedience, humility, the primacy of the "Work of God," discretion, moderation, and the supremacy of fraternal charity are ageless. 

Canon law and other regulations of the Roman Catholic Church establish the framework of all religious institutes of the "Consecrated Life." Our community is governed by the Constitution of the Benedictine Subiaco Cassenese Congregation and our day-to-day customs are guided by our own "Book of Customs." While we may continue to observe whatever customs are still feasible today, we make it a priority to reflect, above all, upon the authentic spiritual tradition of the Holy Rule, which is read daily in community in brief segments so that it is heard in its entirety three times within a year.

Enclosure. As directed in the Holy Rule, we observe certain practices that maintain a definitive separation from the outside world as much as is possible. The separating grille in the church has both a practical and a symbolic purpose in witnessing how our community has withdrawn from the world to worship and pray on its behalf. Locked doors, gates, walls, and fences secure the areas on the monastery property that are used exclusively by the monks for work, meals, and other normal activities out of the sight and interaction of guests. Unless necessity or other compelling reasons demand otherwise, monks remain on the grounds of the monastery, not leaving it unless permitted or directed by the Superior. We do our best to provide guests with suitable accommodations and welcoming areas outside the enclosure so that all visitors are well cared for without compromising our cloistered life. 

Opus Dei. The daily celebration of the Holy Eucharist and the Liturgy of the Hours, referred to as the "Work of God" in the Holy Rule, take precedence over all other human work, activities, personal prayers, and devotions. The prayerful and proper celebration of the liturgy is the ministry of monastic men and women. The liturgy is the Church at prayer, and monastic communities, in a very special way, carry out this mission with reverence and devotion. The arrangement of our monastic church and all our liturgical actions comply with the approved norms of the Catholic Church of the Roman Rite for Benedictine communities. Daily Mass is celebrated according to the "Novus Ordo" (Ordinary Form of Pope Paul VI) using the currently approved English Missal according to the level of solemnity appropriate for each day. As encouraged by the Church for monastic communities, there is extensive use of Latin Gregorian chant from the Graduale Romanum (1979 edition). 

And, as directed by Monastic Hours (Collegeville, Minnesota: Liturgical Press, 2000), our Liturgy of the Hours complies with the reforms of the Second Vatican Council, and maintains a regular psalter wherein all 150 Psalms are prayed within a two-week cycle. The Latin hymns, antiphons, psalms, and responses are taken from the revised Antiphonarium Monasticum (Solesmes: Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes, 2005-2007). Our liturgical day begins with the Office of Readings, known in the monastery as "Vigils," celebrated before sunrise. The psalms at this hour are chanted "recto tono" (on a single tone) in English (Grail Psalter 2010) while the hymns are sung in Latin. We gather six times throughout the day to pray the canonical hours of Lauds (Morning Praise), Terse (Midmorning Prayer), Sext (Midday Prayer), None (Midafternoon Prayer), Vespers (Evening Prayer), and Compline (Night Prayer).
Monastic Horarium

4:15 a.m. Vigils
6:00 a.m. Lauds
---Followed by Lectio Divina
---and private prayer

7:00 a.m. Breakfast
---Taken in silence
9:00 a.m. Terse
9:30 a.m. Mass
12:00 noon Sext
12:30 p.m. Dinner
---In silence while
---listening to reading

3:00 p.m. None
---(with Adoration and
---Benediction of the
---Blessed Sacrament)

5:10 p.m. Vespers
---Followed by Lectio Divina
---and private prayer

6:00 p.m. Supper
---(Sunday evening meal
---would be informal and
---combined with Recreation)

8:00 p.m. Compline
---Night Silence through
---Lauds of the next day

5:30 a.m. Vigils
6:30 a.m. Lauds
7:00 a.m. Breakfast
---Taken in silence
8:10 a.m. Terse
8:30 a.m. Mass
---Mondays are primarily
---"free days" where monks
---may pursue personal hobbies
---or other interests or engage in
---recreational activities
---with one another.

12:00 noon Sext
12:30 p.m. Dinner
---In silence while
---listening to reading

1:45 p.m. None
5:10 p.m. Vespers
---Followed by Lectio Divina
---and private prayer

6:00 p.m. Supper
---Community Recreation
7:30 p.m. Compline
---Night Silence through
---Lauds of the next day

4:30 a.m. Vigils
6:00 a.m. Lauds
---Followed by Lectio Divina
---and private prayer

7:00 a.m. Breakfast
---Taken in silence
8:10 a.m. Terse
8:30 a.m. Mass
---For postulants and novices:
---Classes and study
---For everyone else:
---Chant practice, study,
---or other work

12:00 noon Sext
12:30 p.m. Dinner
---In silence while
---listening to reading

1:45 p.m. None
---Work Assignments
5:10 p.m. Vespers
---Followed by Lectio Divina
---and private prayer

6:00 p.m. Supper
---Community Recreation
7:30 p.m. Compline
---Night Silence through
---Lauds of the next day

Life in Common. Solitude and silence do play a significant role in the monastic life, but such values are never as important as fraternity. The monastic community is a family and the Superior is the father of that family. No matter how good each monk may be, none of us are angels, and sanctity is not an automatic gift. All that we do here is carried out within the context of the common good and fraternal charity: prayer, study, labor, and the daily struggle on our journey toward God. Community life is our greatest cross and our greatest blessing. By doing our best to be present in a timely fashion at the liturgy, at table, and community recreation, we are lending support and encouragement to one another. Community life is never easy, but it is a great grace, and vital to a wholesome life in holiness.


The Theology of Religious Vocation

Sunday, December 08, 2013

Here's the still-unsurpassed guide to discernment, grounded in the theology of Aquinas. On the question of religious vocation, all are agreed: A candidate must be called by God. But how God calls, and how one knows He has called, are questions that receive widely differing answers. Errors are costly: A false vocation can harm both the Church and the man or woman who was not truly called. A vocation missed means a life's full potential unrealized and perhaps an incalculable loss to souls.

Which is why this book by Fr. Edward Farrell, OP, received such high praise from reviewers, educators and pastors alike when it first appeared in 1952. Father Farrell's aims:

1) to lay down practical, workable principles, as immediately proximate to action as possible, which can be used profitably by confessors and spiritual directors in their task of guiding prospective candidates for the religious state; and 2) to order, crystallize, and make explicit a body of Thomistic doctrine on religious vocation.

In fact, Fr. Farrell succeeded in doing even more: As several reviewers pointed out, his guidebook was no less indispensable to young men and women considering religious life, and their parents, than to pastors and counselors. The reason? Sound advice and reliable answers on topics like:
- Three principal signs of a religious vocation
- Nine secondary signs
- Step-by-step, how the candidate should examine his qualifications and suitability for religious life, and then decide
- Four material factors that establish the suitability of a person for the religious life
- What role does individual nature play in the determination of a vocation? What qualities or characteristics does God bestow upon His favored children?
- Two indispensable conditions of divine vocation and the personal habits and dispositions that contribute to them
- Four basic human qualities that any prospective candidate for the religious life should have
- Inward impediments to the religious life; e.g., sensuality and spiritual sloth and their remedies
- Six factors that contribute to religious vocation by positively influencing the exercise of virtues indispensable to it
- The family's role in vocation. Dangerous attitudes that grow like weeds even in the minds of good, Catholic parents, according to Pope Pius XI
- The role of priests, and other special influences
- Guidelines for priests in preaching and counseling about vocations; Is God's call something internal, a grace infused into the soul? Or external, an invitation of a legitimate superior to embrace the religious life?
- What is the internal call St. Thomas speaks of? Just as important: What is it not? Why is it necessary? How may it be discerned? St. Thomas' specific, practical norms on the nature and discernment of vocation
- Two principles of Thomistic teaching on grace and predestination that apply specifically to the question of vocation
- Religious vocation defined with theological precision, stripped of the confusions and ambiguities of popular usage
- The one statement of Our Lord which contains an epitome of Catholic doctrine on the nature of the religious state and its relation to the common Christian life
- The virtue of religion: how it supplies the power that carries the candidate across the threshold of a new life
- The virtue of magnanimity: how it functions as the special and proper cause of the intensity of the act of devotion which is religious vocation
- The virtue that will always be found wherever a vigorous religious life prevails, supplying to religious the fullness of heart and courage necessary to keep them plodding along the great and difficult road to perfection
- Why greatness is inseparable from the religious life
- How the essence of the religious state is found in the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience
- How one can cultivate the seeds of religious vocation


St Padre Pio as the Aged Simeon: An Advent Meditation

Isn’t this picture of the Holy Capuchin Priest striking as realistic and beautiful as he presents the Divine Infant for our veneration? What strength on the one hand and what gentleness on the other! What a contrast between the manly face which is a little rough of the courageous son of Saint Francis and that of the little King of hearts! What a difference between these two right hands that we see: this tiny one which is tendered graciously towards us, and that adult and imposing one which hides its wound and its terrible sufferings under the black mitten and the lace of his alb! On the one hand the strength of a male athlete whose life is but a perpetual and dolorous immolation for God and souls, a fierce combat against sins and the demon (Bluebeard, as he calls him) and the on the other hand, the sweetness and abandon of a peaceful Baby.

But if one penetrates even further in the contemplation of this picture and thinks of Christmas Night, one perceives how goodness and sweetness is also found in the celebrated stigmatist. Loaded with such a noble burden, how lightly he walks, how his heart must be entirely enflamed at the touch of Jesus, so precious and amiable. And faith makes us see in this little Infant of Christmas the Strong God, The Lord of Hosts, Who begins His gigantic course to become one day at His turn cruelly stigmatized and immolated. He who is carried gives to him who carries Him all the strength he has need of to advance in his career of Priest and victim. “The old man carried the Infant, says the liturgy of the Feast of the Presentation of Our Lord in the Temple, but the Infant governed the old man.” (The Alleluia verse from the Mass, taken from a profound remark of Saint Augustine).

Meditation on this picture of our Capuchin “Simeon” and of his Heavenly burden will aid us to understand that in the Heart of God and of His Saints, there is as much strength as there is gentleness, as much unction as there is courage. In God and in those who resemble Him, the rigor, the intransigence, in respect to evil and error, doesn’t take away suppleness, goodness and condescension. This is a harmony and equilibrium that often escapes us. Our frailty makes us pass from stiffness to laxity, from hardness to liberality, from willfulness to passiveness, or vice versa.

The Great Antiphon that the Church has us sing before the Magnificat of Vespers on December 17th (the first of the “O” Antiphons) is perfectly adapted to our needs as children of our Seraphic Father and of Padre Pio. Before the image of the Divine Infant, let us repeat it several times with confidence: “O Wisdom, that proceeds from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from end to end, mightily and sweetly disposing all things, come to teach us the way of prudence.”

Source: Written by Fr. Jacques Emily, TOSF chaplain.  If you are interested in joining the Traditional Third Order Franciscans, please contact:

Fr. Jacques Emily, TOSF chaplain
St. Aloysius Gonzaga Retreat House
PO Box 1379 Los Gatos, CA 95031
408-354-7703 tel | 408-354-7369 fax


St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary (SSPX) 2013-2014 Enrollment

Thursday, November 28, 2013

From the website of the SSPX:

We are happy to report that St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary in Winona, Minnesota has 93 members in residence.

Amongst this number are the 10 priests who form the faculty staff, from the rector and vice rector to the various professors, who also act as spiritual directors to the various seminarians and religious.
As for seminarians, 93 have entered St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary for the academic year of 2013-2014. This total includes those in various stages of preparation for the holy priesthood, from those in the Spirituality Year, to those in cassock or tonsured, as well as the clerics ordained in the minor or major holy orders (up to the diaconate).

The total also includes the 17 new entrants who have entered the preliminary year of preparation called Humanities — essentially a program of Liberal Arts studies — to ensure these young men have an elemental intellectual formation before entering the Spirituality Year — the focus of which is the spiritual life.

Not to be forgotten amongst the 93 members are 5 professed brothers, 2 brother-novices and 1 postulant to the SSPX's religious brotherhood.

Thus here in the United States, the Society of St. Pius X continues in its Church-given mission to form priests in the likeness of Our Lord Jesus Christ for the sanctification and salvation of souls.
During this 2013-2014 academic year, please keep the faculty, seminarians and religious at St. Thomas Aquinas Seminary in your prayers.


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