Monday, June 28, 2021

Prophecies of St. Irenaeus

From Against the Heresies:
He [The Antichrist] shall sit in the Temple of God as if he were Christ, and leading astray those who worship him. For when he is come, and of his own accord concentrates in his own person the apostasy, and accomplishes whatever he shall do according to his own will and choice, sitting also in the Temple of God so that his dupes may adore him as the Christ...By means of the events which shall occur in the time of Antichrist it is shown that he, being an apostate and a robber, is anxious to be adored as God; and that although a mere slave, he wishes to be proclaimed as a king. For he being endued with all the power of the devil, shall come, not as a righteous king, not as a legitimate king obedient to God but as an impious, unjust, and lawless one; as an iniquitous and murderous apostate; as a robber, concentrating in himself a satanic apostasy, and setting aside idols to persuade men that he himself is God....The disciples of the apostles say (from oral tradition) that they (Elias and Enoch) whose living bodies were taken up from this world have been placed in an earthly paradise where they will remain until the end of the world...At the time of his reign Antichrist will command that Jerusalem be rebuilt in its splendor and will make it a great and populous city, second to none in the world and will order his palace to be built there. (Read more.)
~ Saint Irenaeus of Lyons

 

More HERE.

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Our Lady of the Sacred Heart

Pious reader, you, who have followed us throughout, what is your most earnest desire? To honor the hearts of Jesus and Mary His Mother; to work for the conversion of poor sinners; to cooperate according to your means in the work of reparation? Well, you may attain all these ends in the surest, sweetest way, by Our Lady of the Sacred Heart. She will lead you with a mother's gentle hand. You will see and feel by a happy experience that, in abandoning yourself to her guidance, you will do more for the glory of God, your own sanctification, and the salvation of others, than by any other means....Have no fear to attribute to Mary too great a power over the Heart of her Son. Beyond all thought or expression, she is Queen of this Heart; for thus does Jesus love to honor His Mother.

~ Love, Peace and Joy by the Reverend André Prévot

Monday, June 21, 2021

Hidden in the Sacred Heart of Jesus

From Fr. Mark:
Devotion to the Sacred Heart, thus understood, is a manifestation in the Church of the Holy Spirit, "helping us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought" (Rom 8:26).5 The Sacred Heart is, in the life of the Church, the organ by which "the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God" (Rom 8:27).
Cardinal Ratzinger wrote: "We see who Jesus is if we see him at prayer. The Christian confession of faith comes from participating in the prayer of Jesus, from being drawn into his prayer and being privileged to behold it; it interprets the experience of Jesus' prayer, and its interpretation of Jesus is correct because it springs from a sharing in what is most personal and intimate to him".6

This is the prayer of the Sacred Heart, the prayer that filled the days and nights of Jesus' earthly life, the prayer that suffused his sufferings and ascended from the Cross at the hour of his death, the prayer that with him descended into the depths of the earth, the prayer that continues uninterrupted in the glory of his risen and ascended life, the prayer that is ceaseless in the Sacrament of the Altar....

The prayer of the Heart of Christ at the hour of his sacrifice passes entirely into the heart of the Church, where it is prolonged and actualized "from the rising of the sun to its setting" (Mal 1:11) in the Liturgy of the Hours and in the mystery of the Eucharist.

Cardinal Ratzinger asks if, after the once-for-all Pasch of Jesus, anything more is needed. "After the tearing of the Temple curtain and the opening up of the heart of God in the pierced heart of the Crucified, do we still need sacred space, sacred time, mediating symbols? Yes, we do need them, precisely so that, through the 'image', through the sign, we learn to see the openness of heaven. We need them to give us the capacity to know the mystery of God in the pierced heart of the Crucified".14

It is through the liturgy, first and above all, that we pass over into the prayer of the Sacred Heart, the word to the Father forever inscribed in his pierced side. (Read entire post.)

Sunday, June 20, 2021

The Life of Joy

A life of joy is the most delightful fruit of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.... "We only do that well which we do with joy" (St. Thomas). If, then, we wish to serve God and love our neighbor well, we must manifest our joy in the service we render to Him and to them--"servite in laetitia." Oh, let us do this, and not change the nature of things--God is joy; true devotion is joy; love is joy; sacrifice is the source of joy; the Cross itself is the condition of solid joy. Let us, then, open wide our hearts. It is joy which invites us. Press forward, and fear nothing. Let us always rejoice and ever advance in love and in joy.

~ Love, Peace and Joy by the Reverend André Prévot

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Of Fatima, the King of France, and the Consecrations

Let us revisit a post by Fr. Richard Heilman on Roman Catholic Man:
On Sunday May 13th, 1917, the children were pasturing their flock as usual at the Cova da Iria, which was about a mile from their homes. They were playing when suddenly a bright shaft of light pierced the air. The lady spoke to them and said: “Fear not! I will not harm you.” “Where are you from?” the children asked. “I am from heaven” the beautiful lady replied, gently raising her hand towards the distant horizon. “What do you want of me?”, Lucia asked. ” I came to ask you to come here for six consecutive months, on the thirteenth day, at this same hour. I will tell you later who I am and what I want.”

It was Mary’s final appearance, on Oct. 13, 1917 (exactly 33 years, to the day, after Pope Leo XIII’s vision), that became the most famous. An estimated 70,000 people were in attendance at the site, anticipating the Virgin’s final visit and with many fully expecting that she would work a great miracle. As everyone gazed upward, and saw that a silvery disc had emerged from behind clouds, they experienced what is known [as] a ‘sun miracle.’ Not everyone reported the same thing; some present claimed they saw the sun dance around the heavens; others said the sun zoomed toward Earth in a zigzag motion that caused them to fear that it might collide with our planet (or, more likely, burn it up). Some people reported seeing brilliant colors spin out of the sun in a psychedelic, pinwheel pattern. The whole event took about 10 minutes.

With these apparitions at Fatima, God asked for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary by the Pope in union with all of the bishops of the world. Our Lady of Fatima said that if the Consecration of Russia was done, Russia would be converted and there would be peace. However, if the Pope and the bishops did not obey the request, Our Lady said that Russia would spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church and of Holy Father, the martyrdom of the good and the annihilation of nations. I find it interesting that Our Lady appeared in Fatima with these warnings exactly 100 years before the 500th anniversary of the Protestant revolt (1517-2017).

[...]

At Rianjo, Spain in August 1931, Our Lord communicated to Sister Lucy His dissatisfaction with the Pope’s and the Catholic bishops’ failure to obey His command to consecrate Russia. He said:
Make it known to My ministers, given that they follow the example of the King of France in delaying the execution of My requests, they will follow him into misfortune. It is never too late to have recourse to Jesus and Mary.
In another text Lucy wrote that Our Lord complained to her:
They did not wish to heed My request! Like the King of France they will repent of it, and they will do it, but it will be late. Russia will have already spread its errors in the world, provoking wars and persecutions against the Church. The Holy Father will have much to suffer.
 The reference by Jesus to the King of France’’s disobedience and punishment is as follows:
On June 17, 1689 the Sacred Heart of Jesus manifested to Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque His command to the King of France that the King was to consecrate France to the Sacred Heart. For 100 years to the day the Kings of France delayed, and did not obey. So on June 17, 1789 the King of France was stripped of his legislative authority by the upstart Third Estate, and four years later the soldiers of the French Revolution executed the King of France as if he were a criminal. In 1793 France sent its King, Louis XVI, to the guillotine. He and his predecessors had failed to obey Our Lord’s request that France be consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and thus misfortune had befallen both the King and his country. (Read more.)
Now it must be noted that Louis XVI, with the consent and guidance of his confessor, the Eudist priest Fr. Hebert, made a Vow to the Sacred Heart in the spring of 1791 when he and his family were under house arrest at the Tuileries Palace in Paris. To quote from the Vow:
O Jesus-Christ! divine Redeemer of all our iniquities, it is in Your Adorable Heart that I want to deposit the overflowing of my afflicted heart. I call upon the help of the tender Heart of Mary, my majestic protector and my mother, and the assistance of Saint Louis, my most famous patron and of my ancestor. O adorable Heart, by the so pure hands of my powerful intercessors, receive with kindness the wishes that confidence inspires in me and that I offer to You like the humble expression of my feelings. If, by an effect of the infinite kindness of God, I recover my freedom, my crown and my royal power, I promise solemnly:
1. To revoke as soon as possible all the laws which will be indicated to me, either by the Pope, or by a Council, or by the four Bishops chosen among most enlightened and most virtuous of my kingdom, with the purity and the integrity of the faith, the discipline and the spiritual jurisdiction of Holy Catholic, Apostolic Church, Roman, and in particular to revoke the Civil Constitution of the Clergy. (Read more.)
The King was killed before he could fulfill his Vow. There are more details in my biography of Louis's wife, Marie-Antoinette.

Meanwhile, Cardinal Burke has called for Russia to be consecrated in the manner requested by Our Lady of Fatima:
“It is evident that the consecration (of Russia) was not carried out in the manner requested by Our Lady,” said Vatican Cardinal Raymond Burke in his keynote address marking the highlight and conclusion of the Fatima Centennial Summit held over the weekend.

“I do not doubt for a moment the intention of Pope St. John Paul II to carry out the consecration on March 25, 1984,” said Cardinal Burke. He noted that Sister Lucia stated that “Our Lady had accepted it.”

He continued nonetheless, “Recognizing the necessity of a total conversion from atheistic materialism and communism to Christ, the call of Our Lady of Fatima to consecrate Russia to Her Immaculate Heart in accord with Her explicit instruction remains urgent.”

The former head of the Vatican’s highest court reissued his call, first made at the Rome Life Forum in May, for the faithful to pray and work for the consecration of Russia according to Our Lady’s specific instruction. He quoted the end of the famous secret to the children where Our Lady Herself predicted: “In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she shall be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.” With some 700 attendees, the conference was the largest Fatima centennial celebration in North America. To a standing ovation both before and after he spoke, Cardinal Burke delved deeply into the message of Our Lady of Fatima, her predictions and the consequences of failing to heed her warnings to the world. The Cardinal drew a direct line from the famous Third Secret of Fatima’s dire predictions for the massacre of priests, religious and the death of the Pope to the current crisis in the Church.

“The teaching of the Faith in its integrity and with courage is the heart of the office of the Church’s pastors: the Roman Pontiff, the Bishops in communion with the See of Peter, and their principal co-workers, the priests,” he said. “For that reason, the Third Secret is directed, with particular force, to those who exercise the pastoral office in the Church. Their failure to teach the faith, in fidelity to the Church’s constant teaching and practice, whether through a superficial, confused or even worldly approach, and their silence endangers mortally, in the deepest spiritual sense, the very souls for whom they have been consecrated to care spiritually.”

Cardinal Burke, who has suffered publicly for his defense of the faith, urged the faithful, “Let us not fail to embrace whatever suffering comes from our faithful witness to Him Who is the true Treasure of our hearts.”

“Let us not give way to discouragement but rather remember that the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary assumed into glory, never ceases to beat with love for us, the children Her Divine Son gave to Her as He was dying on the cross,” he said. (Read more.)

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Confidence and Abandonment

...Abandonment is, I may dare to say, the principle virtue of souls devoted to the Sacred Heart....By abandonment He offers them a means by which they are enabled to participate in His almighty power. He opens to them them the treasures of His Heart, which undertakes to supply for all the shortcomings of souls abandoned to Him, and to perfect all their works. He makes them docile instruments, who place no obstacles to the action of God, and faithfully give Him the glory in all....Confidence by itself can easily obtain all things.

~ Love, Peace and Joy by the Reverend André Prévot

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

The Oblation of Saint Thérèse

On June 9, 1895, at the Carmel of Lisieux, Saint Thérèse made the Act of Oblation to Merciful Love. In her autobiography she said: "I received the grace to understand, more than ever, how much Jesus desires to be loved." Instead of offering herself as victim to the justice of God, as did other religious, taking upon themselves the "punishment reserved for sinners," Saint Thérèse decided to offer herself as a victim to the Merciful Love of God. She asked to be consumed as a holocaust in the fire of the Sacred Heart, in order to console that Heart and save souls. "Fire transforms all things into itself, " the saint wrote in her Act of Oblation. "I know that the fire of love is more sanctifying than the fire of Purgatory."
 
With her Act of Oblation, Saint Thérèse did not expect sufferings to go away. "I wish to suffer for Love's sake and for Love's sake even to rejoice...I will sing always, even if my roses must be gathered among thorns...." In a letter to her sister Celine, she explained: "The burden of our song is suffering. Jesus offers us a chalice of great bitterness. Let us not withdraw our lips from it, but suffer in peace. He who says peace does not say joy, or at least sensible joy....Do not think we can find love without suffering...."

Through her Oblation to Merciful Love, Saint Thérèse gained a deep insight into her Carmelite vocation. "I understand that love embraces all vocations, that it is all things, and that it reaches out through all ages, and to the uttermost limits of the earth, because it is eternal....In the heart of the Church my Mother, I will be love." She prayed that after her death she be allowed to "return to earth" to keep saving souls. She said: "I want to spend my heaven doing good upon earth."

"You will look down from Heaven, will you not?" asked her sister when Saint Thérèse was mortally ill. 

"No," replied the dying young woman. "I will come down." Another time she said: "After my death, I will let fall from Heaven a shower of roses." On September 30, 1897, in great mental and physical agony, the twenty-four year old nun, gasping for breath, proclaimed: "I do not regret having surrendered myself to Love." A few hours later, her last words were: "My God, I love You."

The miracles which followed her death took the Church and the world by storm.

(All quotations are from the book Soeur Thérèse of Lisieux, The Little Flower, 1912)

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Vow of Louis XVI to the Sacred Heart



There is a great deal of misunderstanding on the internet concerning the Consecration of France to the Sacred Heart by Louis XVI. It is not true that the king made the Vow/Consecration in the Temple prison while awaiting execution. He made it while still living at the Tuileries palace. In the spring of 1791, after signing the Civil Constitution of the Clergy a few months earlier, King Louis XVI fell ill at the Tuileries, where the royal family were living under house arrest. His illness was undoubtedly the result of the stress of the upheavals which he had tried to prevent, as well as the fact that his conscience was troubling him about signing the Catholic Church in France over to the revolutionary government, severing the ties with Rome. Louis had signed it under duress but deeply regretted his decision immediately.

According to biographer Bernard Fay, Louis made the Vow under the guidance of his non-juring confessor, a Eudist priest Fr. Hebert. In the 1600's a Visitation nun, Saint Margaret Mary, had claimed that Jesus had requested that the King of France consecrate France to His Sacred Heart. The consecration had never been performed. So, with the help of Fr. Hebert, Louis drafted the following Vow, which he sealed in the walls of his apartments.

The Vow was not found until the palace had been partially burned by the Commune and was being torn down in 1871. It was discovered still sealed in the wall of the king's room. Louis was a locksmith and was fascinated with construction, so building a hiding place for his papers would not have been beyond him. He was known for his penchant for secrecy and his hiding of private papers from prying eyes. The fact that the Vow was not discovered until the 1870's demolishes the claim of some that it was merely a product of pious forgery during the 1814-1830 Restoration. The methodical legality of the document is typical of Louis XVI, who as an amateur cartographer was characterized by his precision and attention to detail. The translation is a bit rough because it is mine, with some help from Google.

Dedication of France to the Sacred Heart of Jesus by King Louis XVI

You see, ô my God! all the wounds which tear my heart, and depth of the abyss into which I have fallen. Evils without number surround me on all sides. My personal misfortunes and those of my family, which are dreadful, overwhelm my heart, as well as those which cover the face of the kingdom. The cries of all the unfortunate ones, the moaning of oppressed religion resounds in my ears, and an interior voice still informs me that perhaps Your justice reproaches me with all these calamities, because, in the days of my power, I did not repress the license of the people and the irreligion, which are the principal sources; because I served the weapons of heresy which triumphed, by supporting it by laws which doubled its forces and gave it the audacity to dare all.

I will not have temerity, ô my God! to justify to myself before You; but You know that my heart was always subject to faith and morals; my faults are the fruit of my weakness and seem worthy of Your great mercy. You forgave King David, who caused your enemies to blaspheme You and King Manassès, who had involved his people in the idolatry. Disarmed by their penitence, you restored them one and the other on the throne of Juda; you made them reign with peace and glory. Would You be inexorable today towards a son of Saint Louis, who takes these penitent kings for models, and which, with their example, wishes to repair his faults and to become a King according to Your Heart?

O Jesus-Christ! divine Redeemer of all our iniquities, it is in Your Adorable Heart that I want to deposit the overflowing of my afflicted heart. I call upon the help of the tender Heart of Mary, my majestic protector and my mother, and the assistance of Saint Louis, my most famous patron and of my ancestor. O adorable Heart, by the so pure hands of my powerful intercessors, receive with kindness the wishes that confidence inspires in me and that I offer to You like the humble expression of my feelings. If, by an effect of the infinite kindness of God, I recover my freedom, my crown and my royal power, I promise solemnly:

1. To revoke as soon as possible all the laws which will be indicated to me, either by the Pope, or by a Council, or by the four Bishops chosen among most enlightened and most virtuous of my kingdom, with the purity and the integrity of the faith, the discipline and the spiritual jurisdiction of Holy Catholic, Apostolic Church, Roman, and in particular to revoke the Civil Constitution of the Clergy.

2. To take, in a one year interval, in union with the Pope and the Bishops of my kingdom, all measurements necessary to establish, according to the canonical forms, a solemn festival in honor of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, which will be celebrated in perpetuity in all France, on the first Friday after the octave of the Blessed Sacrament, and always followed by a general procession, in repair of the insults and profanations made in the time of the disorders, by the schismatics, the heretics and the bad Christians.


3. To go myself in person, within three months from the day of my delivery, to the church of Notre-Dame of Paris, or in any other principal church of the place where I will be, and to pronounce, one day of Sunday or festival, at the foot of the high altar, after the offertory of the Mass, and between the hands of the celebrant, a solemn act of dedication of my person, my family and my kingdom to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, promising to give to all my subjects, the example of the worship and the devotion which are due to this adorable Heart.


4. To set up and to decorate at my own expense, in the church which I will choose for it, within one year from the day of my delivery, an altar which will be dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and which will be used as an eternal monument of my recognition and my confidence without end in the infinite merits and in the inexhaustible treasures of grace which are contained in this Crowned Heart.


5. Finally, to renew every year, in the place where I will be, on the Feast of the Sacred Heart, the act of dedication expressed in the third article, and to attend the general procession which will follow the Mass of this day. Today I pronounce only in secrecy this promise, but I would sign it my blood if it were needed; and the most beautiful day of my life will be that where I will be able to aloud publish it in the temple. O Adorable Heart of my Savior! Let my right hand be forgotten and let me curse myself, if I forget Your blessings and my promises, if I cease to love You, finding my confidence in You and all of my consolation. Amen.

Here is the original French:


Consécration de la France au sacré-Coeur de Jésus



Vous voyez, ô mon Dieu ! toutes les plaies qui déchirent mon coeur, et la profondeur de l'abîme dans lequel je suis tombé. Des maux sans nombre m'environnent de toutes parts. A mes malheurs personnels et à ceux de ma famille, qui sont affreux, se joignent pour accabler mon âme, ceux qui couvrent la face du royaume. Les cris de tous les infortunés, les gémissements de la religion opprimée retentissent à mes oreilles, et une voix intérieure m'avertit encore que peut-être votre justice me reproche toutes ces calamités, parce que, dans les jours de ma puissance, je n'ai pas réprimé la licence du peuple et l'irréligion, qui en sont les principales sources ; parce que j'ai fourni moi-même des armes à l'hérésie qui triomphe, en la favorisant par des lois qui ont doublé ses forces et lui ont donné l'audace de tout oser.

Je n'aurai pas la témérité, ô mon Dieu ! de me justifier devant vous ; mais vous savez que mon coeur a toujours été soumis à la foi et aux règles des moeurs ; mes fautes sont le fruit de ma faiblesse et semblent dignes de votre grande miséricorde. Vous avez pardonné au roi David, qui avait été cause que vos ennemis avaient blasphémé contre vous ; au roi Manassès, qui avait entraîné son peuple dans l'idolâtrie. Désarmé par leur pénitence, vous les avez rétabli l'un et l'autre sur le trône de Juda ; vous les avez fait régner avec paix et gloire. Seriez-vous inexorable aujourd'hui pour un fils de saint Louis, qui prend ces rois pénitents pour modèles, et qui, à leur exemple, désire réparer ses fautes et devenir un Roi selon votre coeur ?
O Jésus-Christ ! divin Rédempteur de toutes nos iniquités, c'est dans votre Coeur adorable que je veux déposer les effusions de mon âme affligée. J'appelle à mon secours le tendre Coeur de Marie, mon auguste protectrice et ma mère, et l'assistance de saint Louis, mon patron et le plus illustre de mes aïeux.
Ouvrez-vous, Coeur adorable, et par les mains si pures de mes puissants intercesseurs, recevez avec bonté les voeux satisfactoires que la confiance m'inspire et que je vous offre comme l'expression naïve de mes sentiments.
Si, par un effet de la bonté infinie de Dieu, je recouvre ma liberté, ma couronne et ma puissance royale, je promets solennellement :
1_ De révoquer le plus tôt possible toutes les lois qui me seront indiquées, soit par le Pape, soit par un Concile, soit par quatre Evêques choisis parmi les plus éclairés et les plus vertueux de mon royaume, comme contraires à la pureté et à l'intégrité de la foi, à la discipline et à la juridiction spirituelle de la sainte Eglise catholique, apostolique, romaine, et notamment la Constitution civile du clergé ;
2_De prendre, dans l'intervalle d'une année, tant auprès du Pape qu'auprès des Evêques de mon royaume, toutes les mesures nécessaires pour établir, suivant les formes canoniques, une fête solennelle en l'honneur du Sacré-Coeur de Jésus, laquelle sera célébrée à perpétuité dans toute la France, le premier vendredi après l'octave du Saint-Sacrement, et toujours suivie d'une procession générale, en réparation des outrages et des profanations commises dans le temps des troubles, par les schismatiques, les hérétiques et les mauvais chrétiens.
3_D'aller moi-même en personne, sous trois mois, à compter du jour de ma délivrance, dans l'église Notre-Dame de Paris, ou dans toute autre église principale du lieu où je me trouverai, et de prononcer, un jour de dimanche ou de fête, au pied du maître-autel, après l'offertoire de la messe, et entre les mains du célébrant, un acte solennel de consécration de ma personne, de ma famille et de mon royaume au Sacré-Coeur de Jésus, avec promesse de donner à tous mes sujets, l'exemple du culte et de la dévotion qui sont dus à ce Coeur adorable.
4_D'ériger et de décorer à mes frais, dans l'église que je choisirai pour cela, dans le cours d'une année à compter du jour de ma délivrance, une chapelle ou un autel qui sera dédié au Sacré-Coeur de Jésus, et qui servira de monument éternel de ma reconnaissance et de ma confiance sans bornes dans les mérites infinis et dans les trésors inépuisables de grâce qui sont renfermés dans ce Coeur Sacré.
5_Enfin de renouveler tous les ans, au lieu où je me trouverai, le jour qu'on célébrera la fête du Sacré-Coeur, l'acte de consécration exprimé dans l'article troisième, et d'assister à la procession générale qui suivra la messe de ce jour.
Je ne puis aujourd'hui prononcer qu'en secret cet engagement, mais je le signerais de mon sang s'il le fallait ; et le plus beau jour de ma vie sera celui où je pourrai le publier à haute voix dans le temple.
O Coeur adorable de mon Sauveur ! Que j'oublie ma main droite et que je m'oublie moi-même, si jamais j'oublie vos bienfaits et mes promesses, si je cesse de vous aimer et de mettre en vous ma confiance et toute ma consolation. Ainsi soit-il.
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