Today is the one year anniversary of the Rad Trad's first ever post, a sort of meditation on the East-West schism after attending a marriage between two Catholics—one cradle and one from a Russian Orthodox/Jewish background. This blog began as the brainchild of the Rad Trad's best friend, who suggested he start this little endeavor as an outlet for relaxation and expression.
For the first several months readership was remarkably low, so low I dare not speak of numbers. Around the time Benedict XVI abdicated the Papacy the Rad Trad wrote a very brief series on the Papal Coronation as it existed before Paul VI, which garnered some interest, but not quite lasting. The two real "breakthroughs" in readership came with the Rad Trad's descriptions of Holy Week before Pius XII's novel rites and with his series Reasons for the Reform of the Roman Rite, which traced the broader causes of the 20th century upheaval in the Roman liturgy. Both sets of posts were meant to spread information and begin serious conversation about what happened to the Roman rite in the 20th century, something beyond the conventional Traditionalist claptrap ("Everything was perfect and Plasticine in 1962 until evil Freemason Bugnini came out of the shadows....") and ahistorical modern ignorance ("Well the Church always changes her liturgy, the new liturgy is true renewal, and has brought about nothing but good fruits"). These posts were featured on the St. Hugh of Cluny blog, the St. Lawrence Press blog, and various internet fora. Recently the Rad Trad has noticed an enormous increase in links via Facebook, but Blogger does not allow him to backtrack the links to the pages which advertise his posts.
As of this moment the Rad Trad has received 38,555 hits, currently averaging about 200 per day. After a day or two without a post the average drops to about 150. Days with liturgically oriented posts get 250-350 views. Every month, except June and July (likely because it was summer) readership has increased. Last month, September, was the best to date, with 7,464 hits. The five most viewed posts to date are:
- The Practical Effects of Ultramontanism (587)
- Book Review: The Banished Heart (451)
- Good Friday: Mass of the Pre-Sanctified (391)
- The Roman Rite in Transition (325)
- Reasons for the Reform of the Roman Rite Part I (290)
The most commented-on posts are FSSP Priest Caught Celebrating Versus Populum!, the review of Dr. Hull's Banished Heart above, and the most recent posting on the Parisian Missal.
More importantly the Rad Trad has been privileged to correspond and learn from many of his readers (you know who you are) about the faith and our Lord. It is a blessing.
Lastly, the Rad Trad will now unveil the blog's new patron saint (and will give him a permanent presence once he figures out how to side bar material): St. Felix of Valois! The last lesson in the second nocturn of Mattins for St. Felix's feast should give readers a hint as to why the Rad Trad took Fr. Capreolus' suggestion for this saint's patronage:
"There Felix wonderfully devoted himself to the promotion of Regular Observance and of the Institute for the redemption of bondsmen, and thence he busily spread the same by sending forth his disciples into other provinces. Here it was that he received an extraordinary favour from the blessed Maiden-Mother. On the night of the Nativity of the Mother of God, the brethren lay all asleep, and by the Providence of God woke not to say Mattins. But Felix was watching, as his custom was, and came betimes into the Choir. There he found the Blessed Virgin in the midst of the Choir, clad in raiment marked with the Cross of his Order, the Cross of red and blue; and with her a company of the heavenly host in like garments. And Felix was mingled among them. And the Mother of God began to sing, and they all sang with her and praised God; and Felix sang with them; and so they finished the Office. So now that he seemed to have been already called away from glorifying God on earth, to glorify Him in heaven, an Angel told Felix that the hour of his death was at hand. When therefore he had exhorted his children to be tender to the poor and to slaves, he gave up his soul to God (upon the 4th day of November) in the year of Christ 1212, in the time of the same Pope Innocent III., being four-score-and-five years old, and full of good works."
Tonight is first Vespers of the feast of St. Luke the Evangelist. May we all be aware that the saints, God's friends, are also our own and let us be cognizant of their presence among us as St. Felix was.