I will never forsake you!

We offer our traditional post for June 13, a day early because we have a special post for you for  tomorrow.

“Don’t lose heart. I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.”

On the feast of St. Anthony, June 13, 1917, Francisco, Jacinta and Lúcia returned as they had promised the Lady. At this visit, Our Lady made three requests:

“I wish you to come here on the 13th of next month, to pray the Rosary each day, and to learn how to read. Later, I will tell you what I want.”

Lúcia then ventured to make a courageous request:  “I would like to ask you to take us to Heaven.”

“Yes, I will take Jacinta and Francisco soon. But you are to stay here some time longer. Jesus wishes to make use of you to make Me known and loved. He wants to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart. To whoever embraces this devotion I promise salvation; these souls shall be dear to God, as flowers placed by Me to adorn His throne.”

Lúcia:  “Am I to stay here alone?”

“No, My daughter. Do you suffer a great deal? Don’t lose heart. I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the way that will lead you to God.”

Lúcia then tells us,

“As Our Lady spoke these last words, She opened Her hands and for the second time, She communicated to us the rays of that immense light. We saw ourselves in this light, as it were, immersed in God. Jacinta and Francisco seemed to be in that part of the light which rose towards Heaven, and I in that which was poured out on the earth.

“In front of the palm of Our Lady’s right hand was a heart encircled by thorns which pierced it. We understood that this was the Immaculate Heart of Mary, outraged by the sins of humanity and seeking reparation.

Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité comments on this sublime vision:

” …  through the rays coming forth from the hands of Mary, they saw themselves submerged in God … and in the great light of God, it was given to them to contemplate the secret of Mary, to see Her pierced Heart. ‘In front of the palm of Our Lady’s right hand was a heart encircled by thorns which pierced it. We understood that this was the Immaculate Heart of Mary, outraged by the sins of humanity, and seeking reparation.’ ”  Continue reading “I will never forsake you!”

For Love of His Sacred Heart

Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and to the Sacred Heart of Jesus are inseparable, although the modernist church certainly does try! For today, let’s revisit this fine old essay by the incomparable Solange Hertz.

For love of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, we offer this essay of Solange Hertz, from her book (highly recommended!), The Thought of Their Heart, on Devotion to the Sacred Heart and the Holy Rosary”.

The Open Heart

by Solange Strong Hertz

“I will reveal My love to them more and more …”

The history of devotion to the Sacred Heart is in a very real sense a gradual revelation of the secret life of the Church. Its prologue, written in the heart of St. John as he reclined against the Lord’s breast at the Last Supper, broadcasts its first rhythms to the world, setting the tempo for the dramatic rending on Calvary. Veneration for the wound inflicted there seems to have been the initial form of the cult among the faithful. From this wound, the “door in the ark,” there gradually issued the proliferation of grace we now know as Sacred Heart devotion, ramifying and increasing through time, space and circumstance to fit all the needs and conditions of worshippers truly seeking intimacy with their Lord.

It elicited tears of repentance, prompted praise, encouraged confident petition and proffered earth’s reparation to heaven for its sins against Love. For centuries the movement developed quietly in the privacy of religious houses and the souls of gifted individuals until it permeated the whole Church in ranks both clerical and lay. In addition to the saints already mentioned, among its devotees must be numbered St. Anselm, St. Frances of Rome, St. Lawrence Justinian, St. Bernardine of Siena, St. Joan of Valois, St. Peter of Alcantara, St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen, St. Antoninus, St. Peter Canisius, St. Francis de Sales— to list but a few of those canonized. Others who spread its benefits are legion. Carthusians, Franciscans, Benedictines, Dominicans, each produced its particular “school” of spirituality based on affection for the wounded Heart of the Savior. The wealth of art, literature, and liturgy both canonical and popular which has come down to us on the subject attests to its vigor and sanctifying power.

Not surprisingly, it was St. John Eudes, the apostle of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, who was instrumental in directing modern piety towards the Heart of her Son. Called by Pope St. Pius X “initiator, teacher and apostle of the liturgical cult of the Sacred Heart,” he had begun by drawing heavily on the writings of the old Cologne Carthusians so as to establish the cult on solid theological ground. By 1672 he had succeeded in obtaining ecclesiastical approval for a Mass of the Sacred Heart to be celebrated in the communities of his own Order, the Congregation of Jesus and Mary.

The very next year, on the feast of St. John the Apostle, December 27, 1673, the torrents of private revelations converged explosively in the Visitation convent at Paray-le-Monial in France. It was there that our Lord, appearing to the humble young nun, St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, chose to set the seal of divine approval on what had until then been a most salutary practice in the Church, but which nevertheless remained a private affair— a kind of “inside track” for fleeter spirits. Our Lord had once told St. Gertrude:

“Whenever you desire to obtain anything from Me, offer Me My Heart, which I have so often given you as a token of our mutual friendship, in union with the love which made Me become man for the salvation of men; and I give you this special mark of friendship, … “

After four great apparitions in Paray from 1673 to 1675, … devotion to the Sacred Heart was soon to be enjoined upon all. If we are to believe the words of St. John the Apostle and the ancient prophets concerning the Heart of God, we who are living three hundred years later must be about to witness nothing less than the last moments of the world. “In the latter days you shall understand these things,” promised Jeremiah. “The THOUGHTS of HIS HEART to all generations: to deliver their souls from death and feed them in famine” (Introit, Mass of the Sacred Heart).

Continue reading “For Love of His Sacred Heart”

Doldrums

“The soul must never be discouraged by the fruitlessness of its repeated efforts. It seems to be laws of the spiritual life that, since all progress ultimately depends on God, He lets us first learn our complete helplessness by long and weary efforts that come to naught. But we have His word: ‘I Myself will come and save you!’ ” (Dom Eugene Boylan)

Today’s post was requested by several readers who have asked for more articles to help with their practice of prayer.  Many are noticing a spiritual lassitude and an unaccustomed resistance to their devotions. A book that has helped me is Dom Boylan’s “Difficulties in Mental Prayer” which I obtained a long time ago second hand. It is now quite expensive through Amazon but Abe Books has it reasonably priced. If you find this helpful and would like more posts in this line, let me know.

One quick note before we get into this, please help the brave and wonderful faithful of Ireland with their 40 Days of Prayer and Penance. See the article on Lifesite News and please, wherever you are, make it a priority to support this wonderful effort. Many of us owe the faith we have today to the unflagging efforts and greatness of soul of the Irish priests, nuns and brothers who brought the faith to our families many generations ago. My own family was brought back to the faith by a fiery Irish priest who shamed my mother into returning to the faith and getting her heathen children catechised. And Matt Talbot is amighty warrior for those of us who battle alchoholism on behalf of our poor family members too weak to defend themselves.  So, please, let’s help the Irish who have helped the Church so much!

† . † . †

Prayer develops just as human intimacy develops, and, like it, has its seasons and its variations. If, therefore, our way of praying is not adapted to the particular state of our intimacy with God, there is bound to be difficulty.

If, for example, one is ready and fitted for affective prayer, meditation–that is, discursive prayer–becomes a profitless burden; if, perhaps, one act or one type of act is sufficient to keep the soul occupied at prayer, then any striving to multiply these acts will be found most difficult and disturbing. If the heart wants to speak to God without words, any attempt to force it to make a series of distinct acts may destroy the prayer.

Again, if God gives His grace to the will alone, and wishes us to unite ourselves to Him in naked faith, any effort to set the mind or the imagination to work will only be a distraction, and is really a resistance to grace. Then, too, souls who have once reached a high degree of prayer and then fallen into some serious infidelity, cannot resume their former manner of praying without repairing the fault; and though they will not have to climb up the whole of the ladder again, yet their restoration has its own problems. Thus, each degree of intimacy with Our Lord has its proper manner of prayer, and difficulties can arise from failure to choose the right one.

But the greatest difficulties in prayer, and the greatest obstacles to its progress, have their roots outside prayer in the general condition of our spiritual life. On the sincerity of our purpose, the truth of our loyalty, the genuineness of our love–on such things does our prayer greatly depend. Everything that can make or mar friendship and its intimacy will make or mar prayer. We have already noted how the familiarity with God and His teaching that comes from spiritual reading is essential to prayer, and can be a great help for its progress; this, however, is by no means sufficient.

The fundamental dispositions from which prayer flows, and on which its progress depends, are humility, confidence, and a thirst and need for God which shows itself in seeking Him in prayer and, in fact, at all times by doing His Divine will. Any defect in these dispositions will be reflected in a corresponding failure in prayer.

Purity of Conscience

Prayer will not develop unless the soul is advancing towards the fourfold purity of conscience, of heart, of mind, and of action. As to the first of these, prayer is a loving intimacy with God. Now, this is impossible if the conscience is stained with a deliberate habit of sin, for that is a direct denial of love to God and a definite withdrawal of part of our heart and our life from Him. Even an habitual infringement of a rule, in which we deliberately persist after we have adverted to it, makes it impossible for us to try to look God in the face, so to speak, to go into His presence with that readiness of heart for His service, which is the secret of all true devotion and prayer.

That is why it is so important that every priest or religious, and every soul who wishes to advance, should try to look God in the face, in all reverence, at least once every day, without rushing into some form of vocal prayer.

In its perfection, purity of conscience consists in a firm disposition of the will never to consent deliberately to any offence against God or to any departure from His holy will, and is such that as soon as any act is seen to be opposed to the will of God, it is immediately retracted. Faults of frailty and thoughtlessness will always occur, but we must try more and more to prevent all deliberate faults; and as often as they occur, even be it seventy times seven times in the day, we must so often immediately renounce them and seek God’s pardon by a glance of contrition and confidence in His mercy.

In this way we shall gain more in humility than we have lost by our fault, and the confident return to God can give Him more honor than the offence has denied to Him. It is, therefore, an illusion to hope to become a man of prayer while one comes to terms with the enemy. Human weakness and bad habits will cause many a defeat, but the war must be kept up with unceasing courage, and with a grim determination to keep the conscience clean of all that can offend God.

Purity of heart

Purity of heart consists in keeping all the affections of the heart for God alone. It is not enough to rule out all sinful attachments, for if our heart is divided by any inordinate attachment, even to lawful recreations, to our work, to persons, or to anything else, we cannot say we love God with our whole heart. There always will be attachments in the human heart, but they must be subordinate to God and to His will, so that they can never usurp His place as the mainspring of our actions.

The spiritual life is a love affair with Jesus; He has given us His whole Heart, pouring out for US’ the last drop of His Blood in the agonizing death of the Cross; He demands the whole of our heart, and we cannot refuse to want, at least, to give it all to Him. Without this willingness it is impossible to remain in loving silence before Our Lord.

Nothing so darkens our gaze on God, nothing so weakens our desire for God, nothing so lessens our striving for God, nothing so deafens our hearing for God, as a single inordinate attachment. That is the great source of many difficulties in prayer. Nor are the baneful effects of such attachments confined to this simplified prayer of silence. The very first “act” we try to make at prayer rings hollow and false in our own ears, as soon as we are conscious that we are dividing our heart between God and His creatures. And we cannot be intimate with God for long before He points out to us some of those attachments that cause rapine in the holocaust; for God is a jealous God–He is a consuming fire.

Purity of mind

Under purity of mind we include the careful and constant control of our thoughts and memories, by prudently excluding all that is unnecessary, frivolous and vain, and by gradually building up a continual recollection of God and His works. This is also one of the most important of all mortifications for those who would progress in the spiritual life, and far more effective than the most penitential macerations of the flesh. In fact, without it, corporal penance is almost useless. This internal mortification should be extended to the control of our emotions, especially those of anger, fear, hope, sorrow and joy.

The man whose hope, love and trust are fixed in God does not give way to anger when God sends him trials or when people try his patience to its limits, nor does he vainly fear God’s loving Providence, which he knows covers every single detail of his life. Nor, again, does sorrow at his material losses enter deeply into his heart when it is set on the riches of God; and the joys of this life seem trivial, aye, unworthy even, to one who knows the delight of God’s love.

Purity of action

Purity of action, which is often called purity of intention, consists in a continual watch over the motives which animate our actions, and in a constant effort to act only for the love of God and according to His will. It demands a relentless war on that self–love that is always seeking to inspire all our deeds.

When a religious has settled down in the religious life, and has become faithful in his observance of the rule, further progress is to be sought for, not in violent efforts to do extraordinary actions, but in an ever–increasing purity of intention in the ordinary works of everyday life. This is the surest way, in fact–apart from very special cases–it is the only way, to fulfill that law of Christian perfection, which St. John the Baptist so well laid down: “He must increase–I must decrease.”

All search for our own honor, for our own undue ease, all self–seeking, however much it be cloaked by the plea of altruistic motives, or the search of higher sanctity, is directly opposed to that great rule given us by Christ of denying ourselves and following Him. This, perhaps, may seem too hard, and might lead only to discouragement. But perfection of this fourfold purity is not required for progress in prayer, for such perfection is synonymous with sanctity; we must, however, continually strive towards these dispositions of purity. We must desire this purity, we must pray for it, we must make earnest efforts to acquire it.

But without a special help from God, it is unlikely that we should achieve a sufficient measure of it. There is, however, no limit to God’s goodness, and it is at this stage that He is accustomed to intervene, taking compassion on our infirmities; after we have been toiling all night and caught little or nothing, He acts through His special Providence, and in a short time He has advanced us beyond all expectation. But He demands that we do our part that we keep on putting out to sea, so to speak, and persevere in our attempts to make ourselves pleasing to Him, and to pray to Him, no matter how fruitless they appear.

The perfect picture that St. Therese of Lisieux has drawn of the spiritual life will help to give us courage. She sees it as a stairway to be climbed, at the top of which God is waiting, looking down in Fatherly love at His child’s efforts to surmount the first step. The child, who represents ourselves, fails to manage to climb even the first step; it can only keep on lifting up its tiny little foot. Sooner or later God takes pity on it, and comes down and sweeps the child right up to the top in His arms; but–and St. Therese insists on this as much as she insists on God’s loving kindness–we must keep on lifting up our foot.

The soul must never be discouraged by the fruitlessness of its repeated efforts. It seems to be laws of the spiritual life that, since all progress ultimately depends on God, He lets us first learn our complete helplessness by long and weary efforts that come to naught. But we have His word: “I Myself will come and save you!”

† . † . †

NOTES:

“The greatest difficulties in prayer, and the greatest obstacles to its progress, have their roots outside prayer in the general condition of our spiritual life.” Our Lord told Sister Lucia that the reparation He desires is that we fulfill the duties of our state in life in a faithful manner. This is a call to humble obedience in the little, but demanding, trying tasks that humble and exasperate us day by day.

“Try to look God in the face, in all reverence, at least once every day, without rushing into some form of vocal prayer.”  This is precisely what my confessor told me some time ago. “You must begin by kneeling before the Crucifix and do not talk. Be silent before Him and allow Him to speak to your heart.”

“All search for our own honor, for our own undue ease, all self–seeking, however much it be cloaked by the plea of altruistic motives, or the search of higher sanctity, is directly opposed to that great rule given us by Christ of denying ourselves and following Him.” This is sometimes a very humbling and hard lesson. It is only when we realize how little and utterly helpless we are and surrender ourselves to Him with humble resignation that He lifts us up.  And often that takes a bit of time. Patience.

“I Myself will come and save you!”

Please, Pray the Rosary and confound satan and those who serve him!

†Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.

The Feast of Corpus Christi, 2018

 

“For the bread of God is that which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life to the world.”

They said therefore to Him: Lord, give us always this bread.  And Jesus said to them: “I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall not hunger: and he that believeth in me shall never thirst.” (John 6, 33-35)

Today, the Thursday following Trinity Sunday, we celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi, the Sacred Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.

In the Gospel of John we read:

“I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give, is My flesh for the life of the world.” The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying: How can this man give us His flesh to eat?
Continue reading “The Feast of Corpus Christi, 2018”

Shoring up the ruins, once more

NOTE: There is an addition at the bottom of the post regarding the Pope’s masterstroke of PR in the Chilean sex abuse scandal.

I’ve been corrected on my post “Shoring up the ruins?” by readers who have pointed out that the Pope’s “Testament” appeared to be an attempt to keep Bishops who commit irregularities from personally profitting from their abuses. In response, I reaffirm that the Vatican has set aside an office at the Vatican Bank for this project, and a possible interpretation is that the Vatican anticipates some danger to the Church’s financial and real property assets, not only in Chile but in various countries throughout the world, notably America. I have been told that there is a distinct possibility that Germany’s government may end its largesse to the Church as may the United States. Perhaps this is false information. But perhaps it is not.  Let us then, watch and pray.

In a recent post we quoted from Sandro Magister

As an addendum to these statements of Pope Francis on the ultimate intentions of himself and of other pastors of the Church, it must also be pointed out that the secretariat of state recently distributed to all the cardinals, to the apostolic nuncio, and to curia officials five pages of “Guidelines for the drafting of a testament,” dated February 18, 2018.

The first guideline is to draw up the testament “with the Vatican notary,” or to write it in pen from start to finish, sign and date each page, and keep it in a sealed envelope not at home but “in a secure place, for example at the Institute for Works of Religion, which has an office set up for this purpose.”

In the second place, “with the exception of rights that the law reserves for legitimate heirs,” it is suggested that a “universal beneficiary” be identified in an ecclesiastical organization recognized as “exempt from inheritance taxes,” with the caution of “indicating the non-lucrative purposes for which the assets are transferred to that specific organization.”

For example, “if the beneficiary is the Holy Father, the purpose will be: ‘for His works of charity, or for Peter’s Pence,’” while “if the beneficiary is a religious Congregation, the purpose will be ‘for the charitable works of the Institute.’”

Continue reading “Shoring up the ruins, once more”

K.I.S.S…

Keep It Simple is a good rule to help us stay on the true path in the post-Vatican II confusion and wreckage of the faith.

Much of the confusion results from faithful Catholics and even hierarchy not knowing the basics of their faith.  Readers ask about  various “apparitions”  which seem to them to be pious and helpful. There is also a steady drip of those who seek to promote false visions and false prophets; many of whom visited Medjugorje and decided to start their own cottage industry of pious frauds.

At times, readers point out that a particular “apparition” has the approval of the local Bishop.  That happens as a result of the disorientation caused by the Church’s defiance of Our Lady’s Message of Fatima. Disobedience breeds confusion.  When you see disobedience and confusion, you are seeing the hand of satan in the Church.

The remedy is the same as always, return to the last point at which there was the certainty of the true faith: Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. If the proposed devotion contradicts or distracts from these vital devotions, turn away!

Today, the faithful are by turns confused, misled and eventually battered into indifference by the failure of the hierarchy to provide true guidance. It has helped me considerably to simply adhere to the rule of obeying the requests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. That little rule excludes all these diverting, even contradictory  apparitions and messages.

But since questions continue, here are a few particulars:

God is always the same, He is never going to command one thing today and then contradict Himself at a later date. This is the all-pervasive error of modernism, that God’s truth evolves to meet new situations.  Example: The Ten Commandments are as relevant today as they were in the time of Moses. By adhering to this simple rule, we avoid being misled by the false teachings of Pope Francis and his ilk on marriage and the Sacraments.

In the same vein, when God makes a demand on us, He does not withdraw it even if centuries go by without our obedience to His command. This means that Our Lord’s request to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque for public devotion to His Sacred Heart is just as imperative in 2018 as it was in 1689. The command of Our Lord Jesus Christ has not diminished in urgency in all this time; in fact, it weighs more heavily in the balance against us as time passes.

The Message of Fatima is organically coherent with that of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. In it Our Lord Himself requests that devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary be placed alongside of devotion to His most Sacred Heart.  There is absolutely no contradiction between these two devotions. They are united, complementary, that is, they complement, complete, and strengthen each other, even as the Hearts ofJesus and Mary are united. There is a beautiful theology there, which is totally consonant with all of the true faith, and an unending source of edification and grace.  There is no need or benefit from distracting apparitions, even if they at times may seem pious or at least innocuous.

After Fatima, the Catholic world was flooded with apparitions and today many even have the approval of the sorts of Bishops which have plagued the Church since the revolution of Vatican II. But if we simply use our common sense, (that is our Catholic sense!) we  readily discern that true devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary noes not benefit from most of these new devotions.

For instance, we know that Jesus asked St. Margaret Mary Alacoque for public and private veneration for the image of His Most Sacred Heart. And we know that at Fatima, Our Lady told us that Our Lord wants the Church to establish devotion to her Immaculate Heart by means of her Rosary and First Saturdays of Reparation to her Immaculate Heart and for this devotion to be placed alonside of devotion to His Sacred Heart.

And yet, Sister Faustina’s Divine Mercy devotion would have us believe that within the same timeframe of the Fatima request,  that Jesus was also appearing to Faustina requesting a different devotion, this time to an image which omits His Sacred Heart and requires the use of Our Lady’s Rosary to recite prayers which supplant her own prayers, approved by countess popes, encyclicals, saints and centuries of thoroughly Catholic piety. Why would Jesus ask for this different devotion when the earlier requests for devotion to the Immaculate Heart and the even earlier request for the Sacred Heart devotion, were not fulfilled?

Ask yourself, does this new devotion further the propagation of the earlier devotion?

Applying the same rule to the apparitions of Akita and Our Lady of Nations, we see the difference in the two: Akita’s message simply points to the suppressed portion of the Message of Fatima, reinforcing it, while the false Lady of Nations diverts attention in another direction, leading the faithful to actions which do not fulfill the commands of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Once again, the requests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary must be our guiding rule.

Another way of expressing this rule is: the earlier approved devotions to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary take precedence over any proposed new message of devotion. If the proposed new devotion does not help us to fulfill the commands of the earlier devotion, then turn away and refocus on the Sacred and Immaculate Hearts. Obedience first, last and always.

At Return to Fatima, we urge all faithful to  Consecrate ourselves to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary and live our Consecrations in all the daily duties of our lives. There is no need for seeking after newer devotions, newer prophecies, more and more knowledge. We find our inspiration in Eucharistic Adoration (in a truly Catholic Church) in the sacraments and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, in our Rosaries, offering all to Jesus through the Immaculata: “O Jesus it is for love of Thee, for the conversion of sinners and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.”

It is such a practical, clear solution to the confusion: Look to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary, heed their requests, devote ourselves to living as they have asked us to live. It is simple, even a child can do it, as Saints Jacinta and Francisco showed us one hundred years ago!

 

Please, Pray the Rosary and confound satan and those who serve him!

. Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.
. Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!
. Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us now and at the hour of our death.
. St. Joseph, protect us, protect our families, protect our priests.
. St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle.

Please pray for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary!

~ by evensong for love of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, King.
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin! Give me strength against thine enemies!

© All Content Copyright 2013-2018 ReturntoFatima.org. All Rights Reserved.

 

The Promise, May 13, 2018

One hundred and one years and counting . . .
 “You are going to suffer a great deal, but the grace of God will be your comfort.”

Our Lady’s words to Lúcia, Francisco and Jacinta echo down the long years of this tragic century.  Although Francisco and Jacinta saw a quick end to their trials, Lúcia’s suffering was protracted and seems especially poignant to us today.  For Lúcia was to experience disobedience to the message of Our Lady and the tragic betrayal of the Church  by Popes and Bishops, the sly derision of theologians, the crass opportunism of some of the laity and the bovine indifference of most of the rest.  Thus, she accompanied Our Lord and His Blessed Mother in their suffering.

Lúcia, Francisco and Jacinta were declared saints by the Immaculate Mother of God from the very start of the Fatima message. They have no need of a “Holy Father” of this sort who offers no more relevance for them than Caiphas and Herod had for our dear Savior. Lúcia still has much to teach us as we prepare to face the consequences of the Church’s betrayal of Our Lady of the Rosary.

May 13, 1917, the day the world changed and no one noticed … An offer made, an offer ignored … such a small thing … as they say, “the devil’s in the details” …

May 13, 1917 was a bright sunshiny Sunday and the rocky hillsides were sprinkled with wildflowers when  Lúcia , Francisco and Jacinta saw the Mother of God, “more brilliant than the sun”, in Lúcia’s words. From Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité:

“I am of Heaven.”

“There before us on a small holm oak, we beheld a Lady all dressed in white. She was more brilliant than the sun, and radiated a light more clear and intense than a crystal glass filled with sparkling water, when the rays of the burning sun shine through it. We stopped, astounded, before the apparition. We were so close, just a few feet from Her, that we were bathed in the light that surrounded Her, or rather, which radiated from Her. Then Our Lady spoke to us: – ‘Do not be afraid. I will do you no harm.’

To Lúcia’s questions, the Lady answered, “I am of Heaven”.

To Lúcia’s question, “What does your Grace want of me?”, the Lady replied,
“I have come to ask you to come here for six months in succession, on the 13th day at this same hour. Later on,  I will tell you who I am and what I want. Afterwards, I will return here yet a seventh time.”

Lúcia then, “Shall I go to heaven too?” “Yes, you will.”
“And Jacinta?” “She will go also.”
“And Francisco?” “He will go there too, but he must say many rosaries.”

Continue reading “The Promise, May 13, 2018”

First Saturdays of Reparation – more necessary than ever

 

For some background on the urgent necessity of the First Saturdays of Reparation we offer the following in time for you to plan to begin your First Saturdays from May  through September and then, in October, for thanksgiving for being able to offer them all!

On her second visit (June 13, 1917), Our Lady told the little shepherds,

“Jesus wishes to make use of you to make me known and loved. He wants to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart.” …  “I will never forsake you. My Immaculate Heart will be your refuge and the path that leads you to God.” …  Our Lady extended her right hand and in front of her palm was a heart encircled by thorns which pierced it. In Lúcia’s words, “We understood that this was the Immaculate Heart of Mary outraged by the sins of humanity and seeking reparation.”

And then, the following month, after showing them the  the vision of Hell, Our Lady said:

You have seen Hell, where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish throughout the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If people do what I request, many souls will be saved and there will be peace.  The war is going to end. But if people do not stop offending God, another and worse war will break out in the reign of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that it is the great sign that God gives you, that He is going to punish the world for its crimes by means of war, famine, and persecutions against the Church and of the Holy Father.

To prevent this I shall come to ask for the Consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays.

If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace. If not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecution of the Church; the good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, she will be converted, and some time of peace will be given to the world.”

Frère Michel de la Sainte Trinité , in Volume II of the Whole Truth About Fatima quotes Sister Lúcia of Fatima’s recollection (given in the third person):

“On December 10, 1925, the Most Holy Virgin appeared to her, and by Her side, elevated on a luminous cloud, was the Child Jesus. The Most Holy Virgin rested Her hand on her shoulder, and as She did so, She showed her a heart encircled by thorns, which She was holding in Her other hand.

At the same time, the Child said: “Have compassion on the Heart of your Most Holy Mother, covered with thorns, with which ungrateful men pierce It at every moment, and there is no one to make an act of reparation to remove them.”

Then the Most Holy Virgin said: “Look My daughter, at My Heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce Me at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You at least try to console Me and announce in My name that I promise to assist at the moment of death, with all the graces necessary for salvation, all those who, on the first Saturday of five consecutive months, shall confess, receive Holy Communion, recite five decades of the Rosary, and keep Me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the fifteen mysteries of the Rosary, with the intention of making reparation to Me.”

In this revelation, Our Lady of the Rosary as Mediatrix of Graces,  promises the supremely valuable gift of God’s grace, that is, the gift of final perseverance, without which other gifts are worthless, “For what doth it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, and suffer the loss of his own soul?” (Matt 16, 26).

Frère Michel continues,

“the first fruit of the Communion of Reparation is the salvation of the one practicing it. Let us place no limits on the divine mercy, but keep to the letter of the Blessed Virgin Mary’s promise: whoever fulfills all the conditions set down can be sure of obtaining at the moment of death at least – and this even after miserable lapses back into a state of grave sin – the graces necessary to obtain the pardon of God, and to be preserved from eternal chastisement.”

The devotion of First Saturdays was not at all new, but was given a new emphasis by the Blessed Virgin. Previously, there had existed the practice of devoting Saturdays to Mary. For instance, “The Fifteen Saturdays in honor of the Most Holy Rosary”, a popular devotion of the Rosary Confraternities to receive the Sacraments and perform pious works on each of fifteen consecutive Saturdays in honor of the Fifteen  Mysteries of Our Lady’s Rosary. Pope Leo XIII enriched this devotion with generous plenary indulgences.

Then, just a few years before Our Lady came to Fatima, St. Pius X, on June 13, 1912,  granted generous new indulgences for the Devotion of Reparation on the First Saturdays of the month, in order to “promote the piety of the faithful towards Immaculate Mary, Mother of God, and to make reparation for the outrages done to Her holy Name and Her privileges by impious men”.  On November 13, 1920, St. Pius’s successor, Benedict XV granted new indulgences to this practice when accomplished for eight consecutive months.

And so we see that when Our Lady requested that the Pope solemnly approve of this devotion and promote it,  she was not seeking the impossible, but merely adding precision and simplifying  an established devotion. And yet, since 1925, no pope whatsoever has obeyed this very simple request.

Pope Benedict XV was succeeded by Pope Pius XI who did much to proclaim the Kingship of our Lord Jesus Christ. But this pope pointedly ignored Sister Lúcia and her efforts to call the true message of Fatima to his attention.  His efforts to broker peace failed dismally and his aid to the Russian people only served to assist Stalin’s hellish communism in its stranglehold on the enslaved Russian people.

We have seen in other posts  how Pius XI’s misguided actions  were the trigger for Our Lady’s return in 1929 to  ask for the Consecration of Russia, which he also ignored, thus contributing to Russia’s spreading of its errors, and causing the loss of untold numbers of souls.

Pope Pius XII also did not establish the Devotion of the First Saturdays of Reparation as Our Lady requested. Much is made of his failure to Consecrate Russia, but the establishment of First Saturdays was easily within his reach and consequently, it is inexcusable that this was not done for fully 35 years until 1960, when all became clearer with John XXIII’s open defiance of the request of the Mother of God. And now, after more than a century, we are farther than ever from fulfilling that simple request of Our Lady and our dear Lord.

John Paul II, whom many today call “Great” and “Saint” added to the betrayal by  refusing to promote the simple and profoundly merciful devotion of First Saturdays of Reparation, and promoting instead the false  “Divine Mercy” devotion and the “Luminous” mysteries, knowing full well that every DM chaplet recited was a rosary denied to Our Lady, and every recitation of the Luminous Mysteries supplanted one of Our Lady’s venerable mysteries, thus falsely pitting the two Sacred Hearts against each other.  The Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary are not vying with one another for our attention! Those who attempt to set the one against the other are offending both Hearts deeply.

At Fulda, John Paul gave his reasons for not revealing the Third Secret, When asked why the Third Secret was not revealed, the Pope responded:

“Given the seriousness of the contents, my predecessors in the Petrine office diplomatically preferred to postpone publication so as not to encourage the world power of Communism to make certain moves.  On the other hand, it should be sufficient for all Christians to know this, if there is a message in which it is written that the oceans will flood whole areas of the earth and that from one moment to the next millions of people will perish, truly the publication of such a message is no longer something  to be so much desired.”

Thus, the pope showed that he placed human considerations ahead of trust and obedience to God. He also never gave a clear explanation for why he refused to promote the First Saturdays asked for by Our Lady. If he was truly the devout Marian pope he professed to be, why did he refuse Our Lady this small favor she had asked for?

Our Popes have not obeyed Our Lady’s request for the First Saturdays of Reparation, our Bishops have not promoted this devotion (for the most part) neither have the majority of Novus Ordo Catholics. But now, more than ever, we few faithful can and must obey Our Lady’s request in this, the centenary year of the apparitions, miracle and message of Fatima.

Soon, we will have an opportunity that will never come again. The First Saturday of May, that is, May 6th, will present the opportunity to observe Our Lady’s long-requested First Saturdays from May through September in the Centenary of her apparitions at Fatima. Then, October 7th, we can give her one extra First Saturday, just because we, her true children love her so much! What a lovely spiritual bouquet for the Queen of the Holy Rosary, Queen of our hearts! What a blessing to be able to prepare for the momentous date of October 13, 2017! Please make every effort to perform this devotion!

For more information on First Saturdays of Reparation, please see our earlier post: First Saturdays of Reparation.

Thank you for reading. Please encourage others to make the essential First Saturdays of Reparation between now and October 13.

This is a repost of our previous article. We have been posting on the urgent need for First Saturdays for five years now. If only Catholics would obey this simple request!

†  Remember, pray the Rosary and confound the devil and all who serve him.

  Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts, Mother of the Church, do thou offer to the Eternal Father the Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, for the conversion of poor sinners, especially our Pontiff.

†  Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us!

†  Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Thy Kingdom come! Viva Cristo Rey!

†  St. Joseph, guardian of the Holy Family, protect our families, protect our priests!

†  St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle!

~  by evensong, for love of the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, Queen of our hearts.
Vouchsafe that I may praise thee, O Sacred Virgin, give me strength against thine enemies!

The Silent Annunciation

This year the feast of the Annunciation fell on Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week;  thus juxtaposing the Incarnation, Death and Resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ. As we look at these events in this way, we see the Blessed Virgin’s obedient “Fiat” introduces us to her Divine Son’s life – His agony and acceptance of the Father’s will:  “Yet not my will, but Thine be done. (Luke 22, 42), which in turn, re-echoes back her own, “Be it done unto me according to thy word.” followed by His cry from the Cross,  “Father, into Thy hands I commend my spirit.” (Luke 23, 46) and His triumphant Resurrection from the dead. See how these events are gathered together, their harmony resonating in one hymn of glory to God through humble obedience. The Blessed Virgin was obedient to God’s will; her divine Son wrought our salvation by obedience and now, in these times, they call us to return to obedient faith in a time of universal disobedience to God’s law.

But note that this year, the Blessed Virgin’s feast is silent; there was virtually no mention of it because it is overshadowed by Holy Week and in fact, bumped forward to the day after Low Sunday;  at which time it was again largely ignored.

If anyone who reads this noticed their church or chapel honoring the Annunciation on the Monday following Low Sunday with any events at all, (for instance, Rosary and benediction before the Blessed Sacrament, an invitation to renewal of Consecrations) please share your good news with us. My own highly unscientific sampling showed not single event. Total silence.

Continue reading “The Silent Annunciation”

Another Look at the Angel’s Prayer

A commenter recently corrected us regarding the “Most Holy Trinity” Prayer taught by the Angel of Fatima.

The commenter stated:

“This is the correct version of the Prayer of the Angel:

“Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, I adore Thee profoundly, and I offer Thee the Most Precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of the same Son Jesus Christ, present in *all* the Tabernacles of the world, in reparation for all the *outrages, sacrileges,* and indifferences by which He Himself is offended.  And by the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg *of Thee* the conversion of poor sinners.

* words that were omitted or reversed in the version originally posted”

I wish I was possessed of the confidence of that commenter! I have dozens of books on Fatima and there are many  variations in that prayer.  On the page which  the commenter cited, I had inadvertently omitted the phrase,  “of Thee”,  leaving the last sentence to read “I beg the forgiveness of poor sinners.” So, I  corrected that mistake in the one instance in which it appeared.

Three Versions

There are several variations on the Angel’s Prayer. Here are three examples  from authoritative sources. I have others.

“Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, I adore Thee profoundly, and I offer Thee the Most precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of the same Son Jesus Christ, present in the Tabernacles of the world, in reparation for all the sacrileges, outrages, and indifferences by which He Himself is offended. And by the infinite merits of His Most Sacred Heart and through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg of Thee the conversion of sinners.”

That is the version published in the booklet, “The True Story of Fatima” by Father John de Marchi, published by the Fatima Center. It is found on page 7 and again in  “The Seven Fatima Prayers” on page 96. You’ll notice that the order of the reparations, that is “sacrilges, outrages and indifferences” is the same as we have used consistently here. Father Gruner was the Director at the time this booklet was published.

Next, from Frere Michel de la Sainte Trinite. The Whole Truth about Fatima – Vol I :

Continue reading “Another Look at the Angel’s Prayer”