Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Why Suffering Is Good For You

by Plinio Corrêa de OliveiraJacintaTwo of the three Fatima seers, Jacinta and Francisco, died young because of the need for victim souls to give necessary fecundity to Our Lady’s plan. Their lives were proof that nothing great is done without suffering.

Indeed, suffering helps those souls who are absorbed with themselves and unwilling to open up. We should see suffering as normal for man and we should practice it with courage and daring. The acceptance of sacrifice is necessary to combat the Hollywood myth of the “happy end.”

Francisco Marto

Jacinta and Francisco died as children by Our Lady’s design as she had foretold. The third seer, Lucia, lived for many more years. What was the reason why Jacinta and Francisco died so early? This was obvious for they spoke openly about it.

The reason was that Fatima asked people to offer up their sufferings. It called for victim souls to associate themselves with the entire mystery of Fatima, and through their sufferings and pains help bring about all the supernatural fecundity Our Lady wanted to give to the events at Fatima. This is exactly what happened to both children who died in extraordinarily difficult and arduous circumstances that caused them much suffering.

The three children of Fátima in 1917.

The three children of Fátima in 1917.

Such sufferings are needed because when it comes to the salvation of souls, all great works of God are done with the participation of men. In general, this is only accomplished with people willing to fight, suffer and pray for God’s work to be brought to its fruition.

In other words, sacrifice is necessary. Otherwise, nothing great is done.

Jacinta and Francisco

The importance of this principle stood out especially at Fatima. Our Lady directly intervened there by performing stupendous miracles especially the “miracle of the sun.” She did this to underscore the fact that Fatima is one of the most important if not the most important message she has ever given in history.

On that occasion and in those circumstances, Our Lady wanted the sacrifice of two souls who would offer themselves up for the fulfillment of the plan of Divine Providence. This clearly shows how the apostolate of suffering is truly irreplaceable and how it opens up the way for the Church to act upon souls.

Our Lord knocking by W. Rainey

A German painter once painted Our Lord as the Good Shepherd knocking on the door of a simple house. Afterwards someone told him: “You made a mistake, for the door has no outside knob to get in.” He answered: “That’s true, but it is not a mistake. This door symbolizes the human heart. Our Lord knocks on it, but there is no knob outside, only inside. There are certain souls that open up only to themselves and to no one else, and in that case no one can intervene, they are really closed.”

Prayer and sacrifice are precisely the way to influence this type of person. They open up to the grace and find life when they suffer and carry the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ lovingly. They come to understand how normal it is to suffer. A person acquires greatness to the degree that he suffers. The great men in history are those who bear great sufferings for the love of God.

Children of FatimaClearly, this includes not only passive suffering like, for example, allowing another to strike us. It also means active suffering that is, taking the initiative in find suffering. This can be done by confronting bad public opinion or overcoming human respect. In short, it means accepting suffering entirely, embracing it fearlessly and daringly, and taking the initiative to look for ways to sacrifice for an ideal. This is what it means to suffer par excellence and we should seek to do this.

The Hollywood myth of the “happy end” is a great obstacle to accepting suffering and sacrifice. Not all things turn out well in the end as in the movies.

Statue of Saint Louis-Marie Grignion in Montfort-sur-Meu, France. Taken by Floranne2006.

Statue of Saint Louis-Marie Grignion in Montfort-sur-Meu, France. Photo taken by Floranne2006.

Not everything is joy and success. Thus, we should not look at suffering as a kind of seven-headed monster that invades people’s lives uninvited. To the contrary, we should realize that everyone suffers and a life without crosses is worthless. Saint Louis Marie Grignion de Montfort goes so far as to say that when a person does not suffer, he should ask for crosses. For a person to whom God gives no sufferings should be wary of his eternal salvation.

All this comes across very clearly in the sacrifice made by Jacinta and Francisco.

In this sense, we should frequently pray to them to ask Our Lady of Fatima to obtain for us this true sense of suffering that is indispensable for all those faithful who want to become generous and dedicated Catholics.

Written February 19, 1965

What you will see when you die…

St. Drithelm

From time to time throughout History, God reminds His creatures, in very vivid ways, of "the four last things” – Death, Judgment, Heaven or Hell. In his History of the English Church, St. Bede the Venerable records one such occasion as it was told by an Irish monk named Haemgisl.

A wealthy man and a native of Northumbria in England, Drithelm was married and the head of a devout family. No particulars of his early life, other than these few, are known of him prior to the extraordinary event which changed the course of his life forever.

In the year 693, Drithelm fell suddenly and gravely ill, died, viewed the afterlife, and was then permitted to return to life in order to tell others of his vivid experience.

The morning after his death, as his grieving family was gathered around his bier, Drithelm sat up. Frightened at the sight of the dead man come back to life, everyone but his wife ran away, terrified. “Be not afraid,” he said to her, “for now I am truly risen from death and allowed again to live among men... But,” he added, “hereafter I am not to live as I have been wont, but rather in a very different manner.”

Drithelm immediately left his house and went to church, where he spent many hours in prayer. Returning home the next morning, he divided up all his possessions among his wife, his children and the poor. He then gave a detailed account of his experience to King Aldfrith of Northumbria, Aethelwood Bishop of Lindisfarne and the Irish monk. At the sovereign’s request, the Abbot of Melrose Abbey admitted Drithelm into the monastery as a monk.

Drithelm spent the rest of his life in a hermitage on the banks of the River Tweed. His remaining years were indeed lived “in a different manner” as he gave himself over to constant prayer and mortification, often combining the two by standing in the freezing waters of the river, surrounded by floating ice, while reciting the psalms. To those who would comment on his extraordinary means of penance by such remarks as, “It is wonderful, Brother Drithelm, that you can stand such cold,” the monk would reply gravely, “I have seen greater cold.” To those that heeded, he would warn them to have a wholesome and holy fear of their lot in eternity, and to those who would stop awhile and listen, he would recount his vision, thereby influencing many for the good by his words and example.

What had changed Drithelm's whole way of life was an astounding vision of eternity that he had experienced while he was "dead."

After dying, Drithelm said he had found himself in the presence of a “handsome man in a shining robe.” This guide showed him three panoramas. The first was a long valley with a road running through it. One side was being consumed by a great fire, on the other blew a blizzard of freezing snow and hail. On both sides could be seen countless souls who would cast themselves from the fiery flames to cool off in the icy blizzard, and then throw themselves out from the blizzard to warm up in the fire. Drithelm thought this must be Hell, but his guide told him it was not.

They next came to a place of intense darkness. Here the guide withdrew and left him for awhile. Soon Drithelm saw a deep pit. Out of this pit, tongues of flame would throw up souls like sparks and then swallow them up again. Among those souls he saw a clergyman, a layman, and a woman. The stench of the pit was unbearable. As he stood looking, a crowd of devils surrounded him menacingly, but when his heavenly guide returned, they all fled.

The third vision was of a pleasant meadow full of sweet-scented flowers and happy people. “This is not the Kingdom of Heaven,” his guide informed him. When they went towards the kingdom and could sense from afar its light and sweetness, the guide would not let him go any farther.

He then explained to Drithelm that the first valley was filled with people who had been saved only at the moment of death. They had much purification to endure, but the prayers and Masses offered for them on earth could shorten their suffering. The pleasant meadow was for those whose need for purification was slight. Those who died without imperfection, he said, would enter Heaven at once. But those who entered the dark hole of Hell could never escape.

His heavenly guide then told Drithelm that he must return to life, but should live thereafter “in a different manner.”

Photo by: Unterrather

Monday, August 31, 2015

Rosaries Against The Satanic Practice of Selling Baby Parts!

Become a Rosary Rally Captain to end the Satanic practice of selling baby parts!

     After the horrifying Planned Parenthood scandal, I was floored by how much our nation needs prayer.

     Especially the Holy Rosary.

     As you know, a pro-life group managed to get a Planned Parenthood abortion doctor to tell them how they sell organs from aborted babies for profit.

     This was filmed during a meal in a restaurant. The abortion doctor shared the gruesome details while calmly eating salad and drinking wine.

     The video is simply horrific...sent chills down my spine...like a horror movie….

     But it’s NOT a movie. It’s really happening in America.

     However, I certainly don’t plan to just sit around feeling sad and defeated! My reaction is to increase our Rosary Rally Crusade across America.

     And this is why I want to invite you to become a Rosary Rally Captain in October 2015. Over 8,000 people have already accepted to be a captain and lead a Public Rosary. Can you do the same to help save America?

     It is very simple. All you need to do is:

  • Fill in the form, and we’ll send you a beautiful rally banner and a manual.

CLICK HERE to sign up.

  • In time, contact your friends and invite them to join you at the place you choose.

  • On Saturday, October 10, 2015 at noon pray a Rosary in a public place.

  • When you become a Rosary Rally Captain, we’ll deliver a Red Rose in your name to Our Lady on the very spot where she appeared in Fatima, Portugal. We’ll do this on October 12, 2015.

     Meanwhile, I put together a page with a couple of videos. Both of these videos bring to light why we need a Crusade of rosaries for America.

     Please, Click here to watch these videos.

     And then, please join our prayerful Crusade for America. CLICK HERE to become a rosary rally captain.

When you become a Rosary Rally Captain, I promise to take to Fatima a Red rose in your name and for your intentions. This will take place on October 12th.

Click here to become a Rosary Rally Captain and pray for America!

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Archbishop Responds to the Demands of ‘Transsexual’


The Archbishop of Mexico Responds to the Demands of a ‘Transsexual’

The Cardinal recalled that the catechism points out that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered acts, contrary to natural law and do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Therefore, under no circumstances can they be approved.”

The Archbishop Primate of Mexico, Norberto Cardinal Rivera Carrera has responded to a transsexual’s demands on the Church’s position regarding issues such as abortion, same-sex “marriage” and gender ideology.

Filial Petition to Pope Francis to Save the Family — Sign Here

On July 29 of this year, a “transsexual” named Diana Sánchez Barrios sent Cardinal Rivera a letter in which she praises the abortion laws and homosexual unions adopted in the Mexican capital and accuses bishops of promoting homophobia and discrimination against homosexuals.

Cardinal Rivera responds: “First of all, I disagree with you that the approval of some laws is for the benefit of the population; murdering a baby in its mother’s womb is not a good thing for the woman who experiences this episode, and much less for the child, who would thus be deprived of the first of all rights, which is the right to life.”

Typically, said the Archbishop Primate of Mexico, “women who have aborted seek the sacrament of reconciliation to ask for Our Lord’s pardon, and we cannot imagine the pain and guilt they carry as they just begin to become aware that abortion was a terrible act in which they murdered their own child.”

In this sense, “the Church cannot accept the approval of false rights such as those you listed in your letter because they go against the words of Holy Scripture, the Church’s teaching that derives from it, and the Catholic Faith lived in fidelity to God’s plan for two thousand years.”

After recalling that the Catechism of the Catholic Church states that one should avoid “any sign of unjust discrimination” regarding homosexuals, he also recalled that Article 2357 of the same catechism considers that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered acts, contrary to natural law and do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Therefore, under no circumstances can they be approved.”

By www.IPCO.org

How the Russians Were Defeated by The Holy Rosary

Holy Rosary Crusade of Reparation

After World War II, Austria was divided between four countries: America, France, the United Kingdom, and Russia. At the time, Russia was still communist. The section of Austria controlled by the communists was the richest, and included the city of Vienna. The Viennese were subject to the all the atrocities and tyrannies of communism.

However, in 1946, Fr. Petrus Pavlicek, after making a pilgrimage to Mariazell, the principle Marian shrine in Austria, was told by an interior voice: “Do as I say and there will be peace.”

To obey this inspiration of Our Lady, Fr. Pevlicek founded the Holy Rosary Crusade of Reparation in 1947. This Crusade consisted of the Viennese faithful coming out of their homes in order to participate in a public Rosary procession in the streets of the city. The intentions of the Rosary were for the end of communism in their country and in the world.

At first, the processions were minuscule, but in time they grew to staggering proportions. In 1955, after eight years spreading the word about the Crusade throughout Austria, the Rosary processions would reach sizes of half a million people, about 1/10 of the Austrian population. Finally, through the help of Our Lady, the Soviet forces pulled out of Austria in October of 1955, leaving the country for good.

”Through the Holy Rosary; Save America!” 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

What Napoleon Thought About Holy Communion

What Napoleon Thought About Holy Communion

In an age of instant gratification, we are encouraged to forget about the most important things in our lives. Our rushed and hectic schedules demand our attention. We must have everything now, instantly, regardless of the consequences. It must be the latest and greatest, the biggest and the best version; it must be new and improved; updated to 5.0, 6.0 or even 7.0.

When we are caught up in the frenetic intemperance of our times, it would be good to stop a moment and reflect on those things that really matter. This is especially true of our Catholic Faith. All too often, we do not fully appreciate what our Faith has to offer. We do not, for example, realize what a great grace it is to adore Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament and especially to receive Him, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.

In moments of reflection, we should think about Napoleon. He was the emperor of France in the early nineteenth century. There was no glory he did not receive during his lifetime. Always victorious in war and adored by his men, he subjected huge parts of Europe to his rule. His life might be considered the apotheosis of all possible glory and joy.

Yet, he left the Church, persecuted the Church and lived a life that was ultimately unhappy. Indeed, it might be asked: What was his greatest joy?

In James Joyce’s book, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, there is a passage where Subscription5.3

Napoleon tells his generals that the happiest day of his life was the day of his First Holy Communion.

Beloc, in his biography of Napoleon, confirms this great happiness when he wrote: “His preparation for his First Communion he always remembered and that day stood out for him all his life.”

The Church is full of hidden treasures that we do not value as we should. One need not be an emperor to appreciate the Holy Eucharist; one need only be a Catholic.

As seen on Catholic365.com

By John Horvat II author of Return to Order. See more of his writings at:  www.ReturnToOrder.org

Saturday, August 29, 2015

70th Anniversary of the Amazing Hiroshima Eight

Hiroshima before the bombing.Hiroshima before the bombing.

Early on August 6, 1945, a lone American B-29 Superfortress bomber circled in a vividly blue sky over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. The unsuspecting inhabitants on the ground barely glanced at the plane. They were unaware of the deadly payload it was about to unleash on them, ushering in the atomic age with unimaginable death and destruction.

As one single bomb neared the ground, a city died in an instant. Houses crumbled, people evaporated, an immense ball of fire shot skywards, and a terrible wave of super-heated gas bulged out from ground zero, flattening buildings for miles.

Atomic cloud over Hiroshima.

Atomic cloud over Hiroshima. The cloud rose to over 60,000 feet in about ten minutes, while smoke from the burst of the first atomic bomb had spread over 10,000 feet at the base of the rising column.

Amongst the unsuspecting inhabitants of Hiroshima was Fr. Schiffer, a Jesuit missionary assisting the many Catholics of that city. On the morning of August 6, 1945, he had just finished Mass and sat down at the breakfast table. As he plunged his spoon into a freshly sliced grapefruit, there was a bright flash of light. His first thought was that a fuel tanker had exploded in the harbor, as Hiroshima was a major port where the Japanese refueled their submarines. Then, in the words of Fr. Schiffer: “Suddenly, a terrible explosion filled the air with one bursting thunder stroke. An invisible force lifted me from the chair, hurled me through the air, shook me, battered me, whirled me round and round like a leaf in a gust of autumn wind.” Next thing he remembered was that he opened his eyes and found himself on the ground. He looked around, and saw there was nothing left in any direction: the railroad station and buildings in all directions were gone. Yet, the only harm to him was a few slight cuts in the back of his neck from shards of grass. As far as he could tell, there was nothing else physically wrong with him.

Father John Seimes, S.J., one of the eight Jesuit Fathers that miraculously survived the atomic bombing.

The small community of Jesuits to which Fr. Schiffer belonged lived in a house near the parish church, situated only eight blocks from the center of the blast. When Hiroshima was destroyed by the atomic bomb, all eight members of the small Jesuit community escaped unscathed, while every other person within a radius of one-and-a-half kilometers from ground zero died immediately. The house where the Jesuits lived was still standing, while buildings in every direction from it were leveled. Father Hubert Schiffer was 30 years old when the atomic bomb exploded right over his head at Hiroshima. He not only survived, but also lived a healthy life for another 33 years!

Our Lady of the Assumption Church and the Jesuit Rectory.

Our Lady of the Assumption Church and the Jesuit Rectory.

How did this group of men survive a nuclear blast that killed everyone else, even people over ten times further away from the blast? It is absolutely unexplainable by scientific means. An interesting detail is that this group of Catholic clergy was made up of ardent enthusiasts of the Message of Fatima. They lived the Message. Was their fidelity to Our Lady rewarded by this stupendous miracle of their survival?

Atomic cloud over Nagasaki from Koyagi-jima on August 9, 1945.

Atomic cloud over Nagasaki from Koyagi-jima on August 9, 1945.

Even more astonishing is that the story was to be repeated a few days later at Nagasaki, the second Japanese city to be hit by an atomic bomb. In both Hiroshima and Nagasaki the survivors were Catholic religious. Most other buildings were leveled to the ground, even at 3 times the distance, but in both cases their houses stood – even with some windows intact! All other people, bar a handful of scattered mutilated survivors, even at thrice the distance from the explosion, died instantly. Those within a radius ten times the distance of the Jesuits from the explosion were exposed to fierce radiation and died within days.

After the American conquest of Japan, U.S. army doctors explained to Fr. Schiffer that his body would soon begin to deteriorate because of the radiation. To the doctors’ amazement, Fr. Schiffer’s body showed no radiation or ill effects from the bomb. All who were at this range from the epicenter should have received enough radiation to be dead within a matter of minutes. Scientists examined the group of Hiroshima Jesuits over 200 times during the next 30 years and no ill effects were ever found.

hiroshima after

Hiroshima after the bombing

Could it have been a fluke? Could the bomb’s makers have designed it to avoid killing U.S. citizens? There is no known way to design a uranium-235 atomic bomb so it could leave such a large discrete area intact while destroying everything around it. The Jesuits say: “We believe that we survived because we were living the message of Fatima. We lived and prayed the Rosary daily in that house.” Fr. Schiffer feels that he received a protective shield from the Blessed Virgin, which protected him from all radiation and ill effects. Fr. Schiffer attributes this to his devotion to Our Lady, and his daily Fatima Rosary: “In that house the Holy Rosary was recited together every day.” Secular scientists are dumbfounded and incredulous at his explanation. They are sure there is some ‘real’ explanation. However, over 60 years later the scientists still have not been able to explain it.

From a scientific standpoint, what happened to those Jesuits at Hiroshima still defies all the laws of physics. It must be concluded that some other force was present, whose power to transform energy and matter as it relates to humans is beyond our comprehension.

Urakami Cathedral after the bomb. Only 500 feet from the hypocenter of the blast stood the original Urakami Cathedral, a center for Nagasaki’s Catholic community. Catholic missionaries first came to Nagasaki in the 16th century, and within several decades hundreds of thousands of people in Southwestern Japan were practicing Catholics.

Urakami Cathedral after the bomb. Only 500 feet from the hypocenter of the blast stood the original Urakami Cathedral, a center for Nagasaki’s Catholic community. Catholic missionaries first came to Nagasaki in the 16th century, and within several decades hundreds of thousands of people in Southwestern Japan were practicing Catholics.

Dr. Stephen Rinehart of the U.S. Department of Defense is widely recognized as an international expert in the field of atomic blasts. Says Rinehart: “A quick calculation says that at one kilometer the bulk temperature was in excess of 20,000 to 30,000 degrees F, and the blast wave would have hit at sonic velocity with pressures on buildings greater than 600 PSI. If the Jesuits, at one kilometer from the geometric epicenter, were outside the atomic bomb’s “plasma” their residence should still have been utterly destroyed. Un-reinforced masonry or brick walls, representative of commercial construction, are destroyed at 3 PSI, which will also cause ear damage and burst windows. At 10 PSI, a human being will experience severe lung and heart damage, burst eardrums and at 20 PSI limbs can be blown off. All the cotton clothing would be on fire at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, and your lungs would be inoperative within a minute of breathing even one lungful of air at these temperatures.

Hypocenter of the blast in Hiroshima was Shima Hospital.

“No way could any human have survived nor should anything have been left standing at one kilometer. At ten times the distance, about ten to fifteen kilometers, I saw the brick walls standing from an elementary school and there were a few badly burned survivors; all died within fifteen years of some form of cancer. Reconnaissance pictures taken of a panoramic view from epicenter of the blast, at Shima Hospital looking towards the Jesuits’ house, did show some kind of two-story building totally intact, at least from what I could make out, and it looked to me the windows were in place. Also there was a church with walls still standing a few hundred yards away, but the roof was gone.

“The Department of Defense never commented officially on this and I suspect it was classified and never discussed in open literature. I think it is possible the Jesuits were asked not to say anything either at the time.”

Miraculous Image of Our Lady of FatimaFor God, who made all matter and energy, it is simply a matter of willing it and the laws that govern them are suspended. This is what happened at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It also happened in ancient times, to the loyal servants of God Sidrach, Misach, and Abdenago, as is related in the Book of Daniel (3:19-24):

“Then was Nebuchodonosor filled with fury: and the countenance of his face was changed against Sidrach, Misach, and Abdenago, and he commanded that the furnace should be heated seven times more than it had been accustomed to be heated. And he commanded the strongest men that were in his army, to bind the feet of Sidrach, Misach, and Abdenago, and to cast them into the furnace of burning fire. And immediately these men were bound and were cast into the furnace of burning fire, with their coasts, and their caps, and their shoes, and their garments. For the king’s commandment was urgent, and the furnace was heated exceedingly. And the flame of the fire slew those men that had cast Sidrach, Misach, and Abdenago. But these three men, that is, Sidrach, Misach, and Abdenago, fell down bound in the midst of the furnance of burning fire. And they walked in the midst of the flame, praising God and blessing the Lord.”

Short Stories on Honor, Chivalry, and the World of Nobility—no. 486

Originally published in Britain Needs Fatima Members’ Newsletter, Issue 25, February, 2007. Britain Needs Fatima Members’ Newsletter is a publication of the Tradition, Family, Property Bureau for the United Kingdom.
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