After instituting the Sacrament of His Love on Holy Thursday, Our Lord commanded His Apostles, and by them, us, “Abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you shall abide in My love … This is My commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you”.
My Lenten reading is from Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, The Dolorous Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. (TAN Books) In Section III, Chapter 1, she recounts the following prophecy which was part of the agonies experienced by Our Lord in the Garden of Olives.
After describing satan and his legions attacking Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Garden, and the multitude of men, who appeared as though blinded, who attacked Our Lord, Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich related,
“it was made known to me that these apparitions were all those persons who in divers ways insult and outrage Jesus, really and truly present in the Holy Sacrament. I recognised among them all those who in any way profane the Blessed Eucharist. I beheld with horror all the outrages thus offered to Our Lord, whether by neglect, irreverence, and ommission of what was due to Him; by open contempt, abuse, and the most awful sacrileges …
After a bit more describing the offenses to Our Lord in His Sacrament of Love, Blessed Anne says,
“I saw many others in which worldly, tasteless, unsuitable ornaments had replaced the magnificent adornments of a more pious age. I saw that often, the poorest of men were better lodged in their cottages than the Master of heaven and earth in His churches. Ah, how deeply did the inhospitality of men grieve Jesus, who had given Himself to them to be their Food! … In consequence of all this, I saw the weak scandalized, the Adorable Sacrament profaned, the churches deserted and the priests despised. This state of impurity and negligence extended even to the souls of the faithful, who left the tabernacle of their hearts unprepared and uncleansed when Jesus was about to enter them, exactly the same as they left His tabernacle on the altar. …
“I saw irreverent Christians, sacrilegious priests, crowds of tepid and unworthy communicants, wicked soldiers profaning the holy vessels, and servants of the devil making use of the Holy Eucharist in the frightful mysteries of hellish worship. Among these bands, I saw a great number of theologians, who had been drawn into heresy by their sins, attacking Jesus in the Holy Sacrament of His Church, and snatching out of His Heart, by their seductive words, a number of souls for whom He had shed His blood.”
All this was brought home to me most forcibly lately by a series of events in which I became painfully aware of the offenses to Our Lord Jesus Christ even in the context of traditional Latin Masses said in Novus Ordo parishes. I will not relate these here, but simply state that I discussed them with my confessor, who is a very devout Society priest, when we attended Chapel recently.
I confessed to Father V. my uncertainty about having walked out of a Latin Mass at a Novus Ordo parish few weeks ago, due to a particularly offensive episode. When I asked about the prudence of such an act, Father V. advised me that we must make charity for our pastors, especially for Novus Ordo Church pastors, a priority.
Father V. assured me that while it was correct to withdraw from such an offense, he urged me to bear in mind that our actions must always be informed by a great love for Our Lord Jesus Christ and a desire to affirm His truth above all, but that it is essential that these actions be done with the utmost charity for others and never with bitterness, which is of the devil. He reminded me that giving in to bitterness plays right in with the designs of the devil, who always seeks to sow hatred and discontent among the faithful.
Father V. cautioned me, In discussing this with others, “you must make very certain that you understand that Our Lord is deeply offended by acts of disrespect and lack of charity for His priests and Bishops, even those who disrespect Him. Many of them do so not from malice, but from ignorance, because there has been such poor catechesis in the Church for many years now.” Father stressed the importance above all else, of penance and prayer for our priests and prelates and most especially for the Pope. He gave me to understand that it is the greatest misfortune to befall a priest to betray His Savior and cause scandal to the faithful.
I then promised Father that I will offer my rosaries and Little Office, along with Lenten penances, for our poor erring priests and prelates, keeping in mind Our Lord’s words from the Cross, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do”. Additionally, I hope to review past posts as soon as time permits, in order to assure that I comply with Father’s instructions. So you may notice some differences as we go along.
To those who are devoted to the Faith, it often seems clear that those among the hierarchy who are undermining the Faith, are filled with malice against Our Lord, and that makes us, to an extent, bitter enemies of them. However, St. Paul is a perfect example for us in these chaotic and confused times. He urged the Jews to kill St. Stephen, but he was ignorant at that time, and when he was confronted with Christ, he adored Him and surrendered his will and his life to serving Our Lord Jesus Christ in the most exemplary manner.
We absolutely must obey Our Lord’s words at this time in history! From the Cross, He gives us His example, as He prayed for those who brutally crucified Him, and still crucify Him today, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do”. He still commands us, “Abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you shall abide in My love … This is My commandment, that you love one another, as I have loved you”.
NOTE: This post belongs to evensong at Return to Fatima. I am not in any way associated with the person who takes my articles without permission.
Pray the Rosary and confound the devil!
~ evensong ~