Thursday, April 10, 2014

Moral Relativism and Secularism - Products of Christianity

I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” Mahatma Gandhi

Christians believe that Jesus Christ always was and is God the Son, one of the three Persons of the Divine Trinity, and as the Son of God He was born of a virgin, here on earth.  Unlike any religious leader before or after Him, he performed miracles, and passed on His power to do the same to His followers.  He alone suffered and died for our sins to conquer sin and death.  One of the reasons that He came to earth was to show us how we are to act towards others.

As Christians, we have been taught by the Master that all life is sacred, that we all (Christians and non-Christians) have been created in God's image, that the child in the womb from the moment of conception is every bit as important to him as all other human beings, that children are special to Him, and that we are to come to Him as little children.

But, more and more Christians have shown themselves to not be different than others who do not believe in Jesus Christ as their Saviour.

If it is clear teaching of Christianity that all life is sacred, WHY do Christians turn from that and support abortion, particularly some of our leaders, like Nancy Pelosi, and the deceased Senator Ted Kennedy?  Why do self proclaimed Christians like President Obama support a woman's so called right to kill the child in her womb at any time until birth?  Why do political leaders like Prime Minister Harper of Canada, the leader of the one party that claims to support the unborn, not stand up for the unborn?  Why is every Christian not united in supporting life?

Recently, I have defended the Catholic priesthood, saying correctly that the instance of sexual abuse by priests and other religious is no higher, lower in fact, than in other places in our society.  Though that is a true statement, it in fact misses the point.  Should Christians in fact be outraged that secular media and society have come down so hard on the Catholic Church?  All Christians bear the shame of the behaviors of some men and women claiming to be of God, who have sexually, physically, and emotionally abused young people in their care.

So, why would there not be moral relativists, and secularists rising up in our societies?  We should be ashamed that Mahatma Gandhi was spot on when he said what was quoted in the sub heading above.

We Christians have shown ourselves to be no different than the worst of the society that we claim is going to hell in a basket.

C. S. Lewis was quoted as saying: “Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.”

How are Christians, not just those special people like Billy Graham, Mother Theresa, Pope John Paul II, but you and me, living our lives differently from the main stream to prove the truth of Christianity. 

We will be held to account for not living the Gospel that Jesus gave us.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Casting Aspersions or NOT

The Dangers of Gossip

I  have just finished rereading an earlier posting from Father Gordon MacRae at These Stone Walls..  Readers of this blog may have read other postings I have made about this fine priest.  Please feel free to wander down the left hand side of this page, and click on the links.  Father Gordon, as you might know, ministers in the Men's State Prison in New Hampshire.  Would that he were going there daily to minister, but no, he does it from the inside because, as those who have researched him or even read his own accounts, Father Gordon has been an inmate of that prison for more than 19 years.  You see, he was convicted on no credible evidence of sexual abuse of a child, who was able to suck a significant amount of money from the Diocese of Manchester New Hampshire.

But, Father Gordon is a fine priest, and in my opinion a holy man, though again by his own accounts a sinner.  In that he is a sinner, he is no different from me, or you for that matter.

The big difference between Father Gordon and me, or you again, is that the main prison that he is in is physical, and can therefor be deemed real for all intents and purposes.  The prison that I inhabit, and you I would hazard a guess, is one of unrepentant sin, and diminution of the many gifts that Our Lord Jesus has given to us for our Daily Bread.  So, though I can get up at any moment from this computer and wander outside in the sunshine, I will carry my prison with me.

Father Gordon knows that he is in prison.  Me, not so much!  There is something to be said for the prison that you inhabit being a physical bricks and mortar prison, even if you cannot leave it, for you can see it, you can touch it, you can even taste it, though I would not really want to do that.  In a prison of the physical dimension, you can at least acknowledge it, and thereby choose to not allow it to take over your life, whereas the prison of my own sinfulness follows me everywhere, and impacts my life silently often, or leads me to sinful actions, words, or thoughts.

But that is not the only prison in each of our lives.  We have the ability to imprison others with our tongues, and also with our thoughts.

Father Gordon, in this latest post, wrote about a priest of his diocese who told a person attending mass, when asked about how to visit Father Gordon in prison, to avoid him saying  “He’s dangerous, and you should stay away from him.”  Though this was a blatant uncharitable act, it is not uncommon, and Lent is a wonderful time for us to examine our own consciences about the words, thoughts and deeds in our lives that imprison others.

The woman in this article by Father Gordon wanted to know how to visit Father Gordon in prison.  Jesus himself urged believers to visit those who were imprisoned as though they were Him, and the penalty for not performing acts of love to those less fortunate than ourselves was the ultimate penalty of eternity in Hell  But, her parish priest did not encourage her to live the Gospel, but instead slandered Father Gordon.

For some time now, My Dear Wife and my prayer partners and I have been praying for all clergy in the world to grow in holiness.  We have also been praying for ourselves to grow in holiness and for all of our family members to convert to faith in Jesus Christ or to revert, for all those baptized who have left the faith.

The priests of the Manchester New Hampshire Diocese have shunned Father Gordon, as have their leaders.  Shame on them for this uncharity and slander against one of their own.

But, lest we "Tut, tut", put our thumbs under our suspenders, and then wag a finger at them in our own self righteousness, let us instead look in the mirror and ponder on who that is in physical, mental, emotional or spiritual prison in our sight needs a shoulder to lean on, or to cry on, needs our financial assistance, and most importantly needs our prayers.

Judging another is such an easy thing to do.  It is far harder to look at ourselves.


Sunday, April 6, 2014

Hiding from Our Convictions

I am a Canadian, and I am proud of my Canadian heritage.  However, I have spent much time in my life in America.  My children are American citizens, Canadian as well, and are direct lineal descendants of one of the passengers on the Mayflower.  As a child, I was raised on Canadian and American history, and of course, the American history was more exciting, as was the American fiction, or at least it was presented as being more exciting.

A number of years ago, my wife and I had the opportunity to become snowbirds, northerners who head to the south of the US (or elsewhere warm) for the winter.  Though we have had occasion to travel to Florida, Texas, and California, we have settled in Southern Arizona and have a "candominium" in an over 55 RV resort there.  A candomium is a humorous epithet for a park model trailer, and these abound in most over 55 RV resorts throughout North America.

Living here for a significant part of each year, I have had the chance to study the people, their attitudes and history, as well as their founding documents, and their understanding of them.  Reading the documents upon which this nation (America) was founded is an inspiration, from the Declaration of Independence to the Constitution and its Amendments.

Accordingly, watching how the Executive Branch, the Legislative Branch, and the Judicial Branch of the government have largely destroyed the intent of the founding fathers particularly in the last 50 years though is particularly disturbing.  Needless to say, seeing how our Canadian politicians abuse our rights and freedoms is also extremely tortuous.

In both of our once great nations of North America, we have moved from standing on the bedrock of our faith in Jesus Christ to sliding around on the sands of political correctness, where what we once knew to be sin has been glorified, tolerated and in fact, encouraged.

For fear of offending others, we have put down the biblical principles of our faith in Jesus Christ, and taken up this mantle of tolerance for our own sins and the sins of others.  Where the Bible tells us to lovingly reprove our brothers and sisters in grave sin, not by judging them, but by confronting them for their own salvation, we instead, have stood idly by, while pornography, abortion, contraception, adultery, and homosexuality have run rampant in our society.

I say this not to judge, since I had a lengthy period of grave sexual sin in my life, and am easily tempted by the rampant, and continually growing list of books, television shows, movies, both mainstream and pornographic, web sites, and other media, to sexual sin.  I know that the proliferation of things alluding to or directly supporting sexual sin in our society create for me the "near occasion of sin", and believe that it is not me alone that faces these temptations.

If we tell someone who is living with her boyfriend, or his girlfriend in a sexual relationship, or is living a homosexual lifestyle, that they are in a state of grave sin, then we are considered haters and intolerant.  The same is true if we confront a man or woman, who is having an extramarital affair.

During the period of my life, when I was in grave sexual sin, not one of my Christian friends confronted me.  All were tolerant and "understanding" of my personal sadness at the time over the general situation of my life, and ignored what else was going on, even though it was pretty obvious.  For my part, I was in a period of emotional turmoil, but I was medicating my emotional distress with sexual license.  A couple of people did talk about me behind my back, and as word of what they said about me filtered its way to me, it was so distorted as to qualify as gossip, and not be corrective nor instructive.

In America, people trumpet the First Amendment to the Constitution as a license to say what they want, and by extension, do what they want, except when they hoist up the Second Amendment, so they can carry a gun, in case someone doing what they want appears, or might appear, physically harmful to them.

The First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America reads as follows:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
That Amendment has been used by pornographers to justify selling smut everywhere, or displaying it on the internet for all to see.  And we, the people, including those of us who are not citizens, have stood silently by.  By the way, in Canada it is the same.

But, interestingly, and more importantly, religious people, who have strong convictions against funding contraception, which is really a form of abortion in many cases, and directly against funding abortion, are having to fight against the government of the day and the Health and Human Services (HHS) mandate, requiring virtually all employers to provide these facilities in their health care plans.

Corporations like Hobby Lobby are in a fight for their lives literally.  The owners, and principals of dissenting and litigating businesses and institutions are fighting to have the right to have conscience objections to providing these things in their health care plans, while wanting to provide real health care to their employees and members.

So, the government that the people of America have selected to govern their affairs is forcing an ideology of sexual freedom (the apparent right of anyone to have sexual relations with anyone they choose at any time, regardless of sex, religion or race) upon the people of America, with nary a whimper from most, and from rampant bloviating by those who claim that Hobby Lobby and their ilk are mere troglodytes from a dark, evil age that has passed out of fashion.

In Canada, the provision of contraception entered into health care plans, including those of private school boards, and religious institutions, also with nary a whimper, and our Catholic bishops stood by, even fanning the flames of this travesty by issuing the Winnipeg Statement in 1968, after Pope Paul VI had released the seminal, and tragically prophetic encyclical letter Humanae Vitae. In the Winnipeg Statement, our Canadian Catholic bishops basically stated that Humanae Vitae was too harsh, but not in so many words, and told Catholic Canadians to follow their consciences, without providing them with the proper guidance to help them do so, in accord with Catholic teaching.

And, in Canada, we have no laws whatsoever governing abortion.  Nothing.  Nada.  Zero.  Not only that, but our national health care system pays for them, as just one more necessary health care procedure.

In Canada, we have the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and like the First Amendment to the US Constitution, section two of that charter grants certain rights as follows:
2. Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:
(a) freedom of conscience and religion;
(b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;
(c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and
(d) freedom of association.
What is shocking and most frustrating is how the freedom of religion has been scourged in both countries by courts and pseudo courts such as human rights commissions, who, in the interests of political correctness have eroded these rights and supplanted them with artificial rights of individuals to not feel judged, or hurt, or discriminated against.

So, in both our countries, where certain Christians in keeping to their principles, have either refused to perform a marriage ceremony for a homosexual couple, or to photograph such an event, or  to provide flowers or a cake for such a ceremony, they have been taken to task by the preservers of political correctness.  Apparently, if you have a Bed and Breakfast in your home, you cannot exclude a homosexual couple from renting your room either.

What is also shocking is that there seems to be no practical instances of heterosexual couples who are not married being denied accommodation.  It may be easier to draw the conclusions that two people of the same sex are a couple, and therefor assumed to be homosexual, whether that is in fact true or not.  However, since lots of married couples have different last names, and many marrieds do not wear wedding bands, knowing that a couple entering your hotel or B&B are in fact not married would require asking a question of them to confirm their marriage status, and that seems, well, out of the question.

To use discrimination in its non pejorative meaning as merely to differentiate between two things, why would a resort, hotel or other place of accommodation not refuse a room to all couples that are unmarried, in the biblical sense of that word?

Christians have found it all too easy to not really stand on all the principles of our faith. 

Last evening, I watched a movie where a man was forced to figure out if what he believed in was important enough to take a stand on.  The principle of the movie was based on the loss of Christmas in our society, which is rapidly being replaced with "winter holiday", but the issues he faced, including the difficulties of taking a stand are similar.  What was most clear to me was that the right of Christians to express their faith in public has been being eroded for a long time, and we have generally stood by and watched it happen.

I have linked the video below if you wish to see it.  I believe that it is worth your time.

So, I have a closing question, and my question is this.  Have we lost the courage of our convictions, or have we lost our convictions? 
 





Thursday, December 19, 2013

Seeing With the Eyes of Faith

Lately, I have been seeing visions of things in the spiritual world.  Last night, I went for a drive with a very good friend and another Christian friend and I shared with them 3 visions that I had recently had.  My very good friend asked me if I knew what they mean.  I confessed at the time that I did not.

Then this morning I had a fourth vision, and though I am not certain of all the meaning I have some clues.

So, here are the visions.  The first three occurred at early morning Mass on three different occasions at St. Peter's Basilica here in London Ontario.  The fourth vision occurred this morning as I was driving to the early morning Mass there.

The first vision happened 16 days ago, on a Tuesday morning.  The celebrant of the Mass was a priest that both my wife and I know and love Father Jim Mockler, who is rector of the Basilica.

As the Consecration prayers were being said by Father Jim, I first saw very clearly Jesus on the Cross, and the Cross lying on the altar.  Then I looked again and saw the Blessed Virgin Mary standing behind Father Jim, with her hand upon his shoulder.  She was looking at Father Jim and smiling at him lovingly.

9 days later on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Father Jim was not present and a retired priest of the Diocese celebrated the Mass with us, as he does often.  Due to some confusion over the Mass readings, the Mass started 10 minutes late.  As well, the celebrant read part of the wrong Gospel, before correcting himself.  He then gave a rambling homily, probably because of the anxiety of his earlier confusion.  So, by the time he got to the Consecration, there was some impatience among the faithful in attendance.

As he prayed the Consecration prayers, I had the second vision.  When he lifted up the chalice, I saw that there was a semi circle of angels behind him all with hands and arms uplifted praising God and worshiping Him.  I noticed the smell of incense for just a moment.  And again, I saw the Blessed Virgin Mary with her hand on the priest's shoulder, and she was looking lovingly at him.

At the end of Mass, one of the attendees was expressing a great deal of angst over the delay in the Mass, and the reading error, as well as the rambling homily.  I explained what I saw, and that the Mass was no less valid if the priest made mistakes or was late.  It was still the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Frankly, I thought that was the purpose behind the visions.

But, then 2 days ago, on Tuesday morning at Mass, Father Mockler was the celebrant again, and I had the third vision.  This did not occur at the Consecration, but at the end of the Gospel reading and during the homily that followed.  In that vision, I first saw Jesus standing behind Father Jim as he spoke.  His hand was on Father Jim's shoulder and HE looked at Father Jim with love.  A few moments later, I saw that Jesus was Father Jim.  It was Father Jim speaking, but it was Jesus that I saw standing in his place.

Those were the visions that I had seen when I shared them with my friend last night.

But, this morning as I was on my way to Mass I had the fourth vision.  When I drive in my car, I often pray the Rosary.  We have Rosaries in each of our vehicles, in my desk at home and around the house, and in our winter home in Tucson.  The Rosary is a prayer that has been near and dear to my heart for a long time now, and I particularly like praying it with my wife.

As I was driving along and praying, I saw somehow that the Blessed Virgin Mary was behind me and had her hand on My shoulder, while looking at me with love as she had the priests previously.  She was pointing with her other hand towards the Basilica that was still in the distance.  Just before I saw this I felt an anointing of the Holy Spirit, which continued until after the vision was ended.  Also, when I shared this vision with the friend I had seen last night, I felt the same anointing of the Holy Spirit, as I do now as I write this.

But, to answer my friend, what does this all mean?  I do not believe it is for me to interpret these visions in their totality, but I think that I have some insights about them.

Catholic Christians believe in the motherhood of Our Blessed Virgin Mary, and that she has an integral part in the plan of Salvation.  She, herself, is the Mother of God, Jesus Christ Our Lord and Saviour.  We believe that Mary does not act on her own account, but in obedience to and in the Will of the Father, through the Blood of her Son, and in the Power of the Holy Spirit.  At all times, when she has appeared on the earth, she has always pointed to her Son.  We believe that she is our Mother, and that she wants us all to be drawn into relationship with her Son for our own personal Salvation in and through Him.

So, to see and feel in the last instance her love for her children, even me, left me desiring to draw closer to Jesus.  Her simple act of loving me pointed me to her Son, Jesus, both literally and figuratively.

In a series of locutions received by a person in Pennsylvania, locutions that have been going on for a few years, and are reviewed by the person's spiritual director, Monsignor Essef, a Catholic priest in PA, the most recent group was Mary speaking to the individual about her embrace of the world.  These visions are found here.  They are consistent with these visions I have just described.

This morning before I left for Church, I had been reading the blog of Father Gordon J. MacRae.  You may recall from other postings of mine, that Father MacRae is a priest who has been imprisoned for about 20 years on sexual abuse charges, where the events could not even logically have occurred.  Father MacRae is not embittered by his wrongful imprisonment.  Had he just made up a confession that he had done what was claimed, he would be on the street, not imprisoned.  Only a fool or an innocent man would proclaim his innocence over the possibility of not spending years and years in prison.

Readers of his blog know that Father celebrates Mass in his cell each week, but the posting also dealt with his attendance with another prisoner at Mass being said by another priest who visits the prison.  as I read his post, I became aware that what I saw in the three visions at the three Masses happens at every Mass celebrated throughout the world.

Every time a Catholic priest consecrates the bread and wine, Jesus is present crucified on the altar, regardless of where that altar is, or what it is made of, and also regardless of the faith or state of the soul of the individual priest.  When a priest consecrates the Eucharist, or speaks as a priest in a homily or in his faculty as a priest, he speaks as alter christus, which is why I saw Jesus with his hand on Father Mockler's shoulder as he spoke, but also saw Jesus in the place of Father Jim at the same time.  We are all called to be Jesus for each other, but a priest has a particular faculty to be Jesus in a way that most of us cannot, through the Consecration of the Eucharist.

 It does not matter that Father MacRae is in prison and that Father Jim Mockler is in a Cathedral Basilica.  It does not matter whether 2, 50, 100, or thousands of people are in attendance, Jesus is present there.

As well, Our Blessed Virgin Mary has a particular affinity for her sons who are priests, and that affinity is specially evident in the Mass and in the sacraments.

But, her love for her children is not just limited to ordained priests.  All baptized Christians are baptized into the royal priesthood, and as such we are all priests in our own right.  Hence, when we pray, when we commit ourselves to service of our fellow man, when we seek to be like Jesus, and to become Jesus for others, we are exercising our faculties as royal priests.

Our priests should have special places in our prayers and in our hearts.  We must not expect them to be perfect, but must lift them up to God in supportive prayer.  The devil is constantly trying to diminish their vocation, by tempting them to sin, and by tempting others to sin with and against them.

Please pray for Father Gordon MacRae and all priests who are persecuted for their vocation that the devil's plans for their spiritual demise will fail.  And also please pray for all priests who are able to lovingly exercise their vocation like Father Jim Mockler that they will never be tempted beyond their ability to withstand such temptations.

 May we also entrust all Catholic priests to the love of Our Blessed Mother Mary, and to the protection of the shed Blood of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.








Saturday, September 28, 2013

Ridgetown Prophecies 2013

For the last few years words of prophecy have been received by a person in Ridgetown Ontario, under the spiritual direction of Father Sam (Martin) Johnston, a retired priest of the London Ontario Roman Catholic Diocese.

These prophecies are significant, informative and may be used to build up one's faith.  They are of the category in the Church called private revelation, and are not binding on any person of faith.  That does not detract from their potential to improve your faith in Jesus Christ and in His Love for you and me.

Here is the list with links to date of these prophecies for the year 2013.  When I have posted those that came before, I will produce similar listings.

May God richly bless those who read these words, consider them to be from God, and follow them in their own lives.


DATE
TITLE



9/26/2013
YOUR CONVERSION MUST BE ONGOING
9/20/2013
LET YOUR HEARTS BE LIGHTS IN THE DARKNESS
9/11/2013
YOU DO NOT KNOW THE HOUR OR THE DAY
9/4/2013
YOU MUST PREPARE NOW 
8/28/2013
MY MANDATE OF LOVE
8/21/2013
DETACHMENT FROM THE THINGS OF THIS WORLD
8/15/2013
YOU MUST BE BORN AGAIN
8/6/2013
THY WILL BE DONE
7/29/2013
ALL FOR THE GLORY OF GOD
7/21/2013
CHILDREN, HAS YOUR JOY BEEN ENCUMBERED?
7/18/2013
IT HAS BEEN GIVEN TO YOU TO HEAR
7/7/2013
MY KINGDOM IS AT HAND
7/3/2013
SOON YOU WILL SEE ME
6/26/2013
IT’S A MATTER OF TRUST
6/19/2013
CONSIDER THE PRIVILEGE GIVEN YOU
6/11/2013
ONLY THE TRUTH WILL SET YOU FREE
6/5/2013
THE REDEMPTIVE VALUE OF SUFFERING
5/23/2013
THEY WILL BE ATTRACTED TO THE LIGHT
5/16/2013
LIVE IN MY LOVE
5/2/2013
YOUR HOME IS WITH ME
4/25/2013
STANDARDS SET HIGHER THAN THE WORLD’S 
4/18/2013
NOT SPECTATORS BUT CO-WORKERS WITH GOD
4/11/2013
DON’T BE AFRAID ONLY HAVE FAITH
4/2/2013
YOU HAVE BEEN RAISED TO NEW LIFE
3/21/2013
ACCORDING TO THE FATHER'S WILL
3/14/2013
YOU WERE NEVER LEFT ALONE Coming
3/7/2013
I AM HERE, OPEN YOUR HEART TO ME
2/27/2013
 HAVE THE LIVING WATERS CEASED TO FLOW
2/13/2013
MY EMBRACE OF LOVE
2/6/2013
MY LOVE FOR YOU IS UNCONDITIONAL
2/2/2013
YOUR FUTURE DEPENDS ON IT
1/31/2013
I AM COMING TO EXTINGUISH THE DARKNESS
1/24/2013
FAITH OF OUR FATHERS
1/16/2013
REMOVING THE HIDDEN OBSTACLE
1/10/2013
I CAME TO CALL SINNERS

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Conflict in Syria - A Novel Approach

Military Solution?  Political Solution?  Maybe a better Solution!!

In case you are unaware, there is serious conflict in Syria currently, though there is conflict in Egypt and several hot spots around the world as well. 

But, this conflict has had the element of the use of chemical weapons, though by whom they were used is in question.  And so, President Obama wants to use what is going on there as the buttress for a military solution, though what it is intended to solve is also unclear.  Of course, there is always the political solution, where the parties to this conflict actually communicate with each other directly, or through third parties to attempt to broker a peace.

But, in the midst of all of this sabre rattling, and posturing, and Obama going to the Congress to get them to support him attacking another sovereign country, a sane voice has risen out of the morass that is the current situation in Syria.

Our Beloved Pontiff is proposing that people of goodwill turn to prayer and fasting   Why didn't Obama think of that?

Robert Moynihan of the Moynihan Report has documented what we know at the moment here.

As he reported:

Today Pope Francis took the first, dramatic public action of his pontificate.

During his Sunday Angelus message, he called upon Catholics everywhere — and also all Christians and all men and women of good will — to join him in a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Syria, where civil war has left thousands dead, and the involvement of other powers threatens a still wider war, this coming Saturday, September 7, the vigil of the Feast of the Birth of Mary, the Mother of God.

He asked Catholics everywhere to fast on Saturday along with him, and also to gather in their various parish churches to participate with him as he prays in Rome.

So the world will see something dramatic this Saturday: Pope Francis himself will be in St. Peter’s Square on Saturday evening from 7 p.m. until midnight, praying and fasting with the faithful of Rome and of the whole world, for peace in Syria and in the whole world.

(Some of the logistics are yet clear. Those Saturday evening hours in Rome would correspond to Saturday afternoon from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the eastern United States; it would seem that those hours would be the ones to pray along with the Pope. It is not clear whether the Pope will be present throughout the evening in St. Peter’s Square. Nor is it clear whether he will be praying out loud or in silence during those five hours, or in some combination of the two. Such details have not yet been released.)
 Prayer and Fasting are not new approaches to conflict, but they have fallen out of favor, as the military option has been the go to option, when political ones failed.  Who prays these days?  Well, surprisingly, many of us do.  And so, why not pray and fast with the Pontiff this Saturday, and let God handle the situation.

This is surely not unprecedented.  Maybe you have read of the Battle of Lepanto.  If not, you can do so here.  The victory in that battle was credited to praying the Rosary by the people as requested by Pope Pius V.  It resulted in the Feast Day on October 7 each year we now know as Our Lady of the Rosary. 

We pray for our friends, and we pray for ourselves, and if we have faith, we expect answers, though, if our faith is stronger, we do not have expectations about the particular answers, rather trust that God knows the best answer.

At the time of His Passion, our Lord Jesus Christ went into the garden to pray, and left his disciples to do likewise, but they fell asleep instead.  When he returned, he asked them: "Couldn't you men keep watch with me for one hour?"

The pope is asking us if we can pray with him over 5 hours from 7pm to 12 pm Rome time, 1-6 Eastern Standard Time, and to fast for the day on Saturday.

Military solutions in the middle east have not produced any good results to date, so why is this one going to be any different?  Political solutions are hard to come by when ideologies are so disparate among the factions and other interested parties.  So, why not do what we should have done in the first place and turn to the Maker of the Universe and ask Him for His asnwer?

My dear wife and I will be joining in solidarity with Pope Francis, and many others who see this solution as worthy.  Will you keep watch?




Saturday, July 27, 2013

Why Is Jesus Calling Us Now?



I CAME TO CALL SINNERS

On January 10, 2013 Jesus gave a prophecy, one of the series being posted here at Life in the Spirit.   In it He explained why He is calling us at this time, or at any time, for that matter.  All indents are directly from the prophecy.  All comment is mine, and may or may not be inspired.

You who are now listening and envisioning Me, I came that you might have life unto the full.

He wants us to have a full life.  But, you say, I have a full life.  In that case, you won't be offended or challenged by the posting of Monsignor Charles Pope over at the Archdiocese of Washington today here. Don't forget to watch the video at the bottom.  Facebook would not allow it to be shown through Facebook, so it must be very contentious. 

Sin has robbed you of all that I had planned out of love for all humanity, burdening you with hardships.

As Jesus explains to us, sin has gotten in the middle between us and a full life.  You know, we all have our favorite sins, the things that we do so habitually, that we don't even think of them as sins, if we think of anything as a sin.  But, just because we do not think they are sins does not make it so.  The man who commits adultery "because his wife does not understand him," or the person who lives in a homosexual relationship because he/she "would not choose to be a homosexual" is deluded, as we all are in some ways into thinking that our feelings can direct our actions and thoughts, and we are not responsible for them.  But, for the unhappy adulterer (at least after the moments of sexual pleasure wear off) or the unhappy homosexual (when he or she knows in the heart that what he/she is doing is not right) and all of us whatever our sin/drug of choice is know that our sins cause us to carry a heavy burden.

But I have redeemed you, and each of you, if not already, will experience a moment of awakening to the Truth.

How many of us ponder that Jesus REDEEMED us individually?  How awake are we to the Truth of that ?  Jesus says here that we will experience that moment of Truth.

This is the moment when you know Whose you are and that you are greatly loved and treasured.

What will that awakening feel like?  At that moment, we will know that we belong to God, and that we are greatly loved by Him, and in fact He considers us a treasure.  In that moment of Truth, we also know that it is He we have offended in ways we never even really knew, but that His love for us covers over all those sins. 

But, why do so few even think about God, or if they do think badly of Him?

The evil one convinces many, that I do not exist and that I am a harsh and uncaring God.

Ah!  There is another actor on the cosmic stage, the "evil one" or Satan.  Satan not only convinces many that God does not exist.  He also has many of us convinced that he does not exist, that he too is a figment of our imagination.  Though that probably hurts his ego, it serves his purpose.

But God is ever able to thwart Satan's purpose.

But the Truth is that I humbled Myself to associate perfectly with you and all humanity.

We tend to forget that Jesus did humble himself to come to earth and live with us.  He is not an impersonal God, but a very personal God.

How personal?

I am a personal God who sees and cares about each breath, and thought, and every aspect of your lives.

He cares about each breath I take? And every thought? Every aspect of my life?  And not only me and you, but every person on the face of the earth, and all those who have died and gone before.  Sounds pretty personal to me. 

My greatest joy will be to see you enjoy Paradise, which I formed for you for all eternity.

So, what is all this love God has for us about.  He wants us in eternal paradise with Him   But for many of us, we cannot see past the earth we are on here, and the simple life (though we think it is complex) that we live here on terra firma, though the terra does not seem so firma any more.

Some of My people are angry Souls, who without Me in their lives, hate everyone and all created things.  Hatred consumes them, and you My faithful servants, must inform them of My forgiving love, and that it is never too late, even to the last moment of their lives.

There are people on the earth whose lives are filled with hatred.  It does not manifest always in violence.  Sometimes these people just have not much good to say about people and places and things.  This kind of hatred looks benign, but is hatred just the same.  

But, God is making it our job not to leave them in their hatred, but to love them and let them know that He loves them.  Oh, and His love is forgiving.  One of the things that hatred is really about is the self, when the person sees that the self is not good enough.  Self hatred tends to manifest as hatred of others.

When they open the door of their hearts, I receive them, they feel love possibly for the first time in a long time, and they experience a joy that transcends all sadness and pain.
All the hurt and the ways that others have let them down, has been put behind them and they are unburdened.
But, God can heal all of that hatred, and fill the person with joy.  When a Grumpy Gus becomes a Happy Harry, the heavens rejoice.  And for the GG to become an HH, really takes letting go; letting go of a life on unmet expectations, and sadness.
You see, when I am given permission to take over a person's life, I do all the work that needs to be done, they need only cooperate and receive.
In the beginning, you are not able to do for yourself, what My Holy Spirit accomplishes within you.

All God wants from you and me is PERMISSION; permission to let Him take over our lives.  That is the hardest thing to do for us humans.  We think we are in charge, and if we let go, who is out there to take charge for us?  Why not ask God and find out?  What can it hurt?  If you ask God to help you our, and He doesn't exist or doesn't really love you, what have you lost?  You tried and it didn't work.  But it was worth a try.

However, it will work, because all God wants from you is a little "yes".

Little by little, I allow Faith which was given to you in Baptism, to flex its muscle, so to speak, and you learn to be faithful in small things.
I will eventually call upon you to grow in courage, your efforts are essential, it doesn't just happen, and you will be strengthened for greater responsibility, each has a mission in life.

If you say yes, He will do it all until you are able to take baby steps on your own in your faith, and you will grow stronger, more courageous, and happier than you can imagine, with only peace in your heart - real peace in your heart, not the kind that comes and goes depending on your mood, and circumstances.  Real peace.

Many of you have endeared yourselves to the Blessed Mother, this was My heart's deepest longing at the Cross, when I gave Her to you, and She has been drawing you to Me more each day.

Mary is there to help us; to help us draw closer to Jesus.  Jesus left her here on earth as our Mother, a better mother than our own human mother, because she has complete and direct access to God all the time, and because she carried the Son of God inside her, and was formed by God for that purpose, and to be our Mother.

In the coming time that remains to you, follow Me and forgive those who will be opposing and persecuting you, causing more hardships than you already endure. INRI
This is the tough part, but it is necessary.  We must not only follow Jesus, but we must forgive all those along our path who hurt us on our journey.  Why is that so important?  It is important for us to not harbor hatred and anger to others, because it turns us away from God, but our hatred sits on top of theirs and weighs them down even further.  Forgiving and loving those it is hard to love takes burdens off of them, and helps them to see what we are called to see,




Wednesday, July 24, 2013

CHILDREN, HAS YOUR JOY BEEN ENCUMBERED?

This prophecy is the most recent one received in Ridgetown Ontario, and is found here in total, though it is reproduced below as each section is described.
                       
Take hold securely the hand of your Blessed and Holy Mother, She will lead you down the shortest and most secure path to Me.

Jesus wants all of those who love him to take His earthly Mother Mary as our own, and to hold tightly to her hand.  Non-Catholic Christians have failed to believe Jesus telling us how important Mary is to our salvation.  If as the Bible says "All generations will call me blessed" in Luke 1:48, then why are Christians so loath to take Mary as their own mother, just as our brother Jesus did?

It is with great sadness that I view many leaving My banquet table, that I have prepared for their food, which will nourish them, as they hunger and thirst for fulfillment in this life.

In this day and age so many are abandoning the practice of Christian faith, sometimes for some other belief, but often replacing it with nothing.  The devil has convinced so many of us that  we do not need religion, that in fact we are our own gods, whether we state it that way or not.

They seek Me in other things and places, or should I say they do not seek Me, but they are looking for happiness apart from Me.

Those who have found their true happiness in a relationship with Jesus know that there is no real happiness found outside of loving Him, and believing in His eternal love for each of us.  We see our brothers and sisters scrabbling out an existence outside of life in Him, and we know that that is just not enough.  It is an illusion, but when it is all you know, you are unable to see it as that.

The rich young man in Scriptures, was seeking how to gain eternal life. He was saddened in the answer that he should sell all he possessed and give the money to the poor and follow Me.

The man was saddened because he could not separate himself from his possessions, he had not found the happiness he sought but, he did not believe that they were causing him to be encumbered by them.

So many of us seek our happiness in possessions, and give at least tacit acceptance to the saying: "The one who dies with the most toys wins."  Actually the one who dies with the most toys just dies, if they have a hold on him, as they cannot help him once he is dead.

We hold on to our possessions like they really matter.  Yet, many of the happiest people in the world have nothing.  We feel sorry for their lack.  They, in turn feel sorry for us for our lack of things that are important.

If you today are seeking a joy from Me, surrender to Me all that you possess or all that is possessing you, I am asking you today to surrender all that is yours, and entrust them to Me.

Ah! The ask.  In sales, and Jesus is nothing if not a great salesman, though He is much more, the ask is where the rubber hits the road.   And this is a big one.  Give Jesus authority over all you possess, so that it does not possess you.  If your car is so important that you park it far away in a parking lot so it will not get a chip in the paint, only drive it on sunny days, and keep it hidden away in a garage most of the time, the car owns you.  The same goes for your wardrobe, your furniture, and all your other things.

I want to give you the joy of freedom of heart and total abandonment from possessions, I am not asking you to leave house and family, but to free yourselves from a closed hand on what you own.

Jesus knows, since He is God, that there is no freedom in the things of this world.  They may be very useful, but beyond their utility and beauty, they are a trap.  Jesus is not specifically asking you to sell everything you own and give it to the poor, though that might be a good idea if your possessions possess you.  But, He is asking your to open your hands and therefor your hearts so that you are free of your possessions, so you will do with them what Jesus wants you to, and give them their proper place as things, not as gods.

If soon it will be asked of you to leave these things behind, it will already have been decided in your heart to have given everything to Me, trusting in My provision of everything you will need.

But, here He tells us that there will come a time when we will have to leave our things behind to follow where He wants us to go.  But, He tells us that we will have been prepared to leave behind our things to follow our heart, and trust in His Divine Providence - not an easy task.

I am to be your everything, thus total peace and joy that surpasses all understanding will be yours.

If He becomes everything to us, we will always be rich in treasure, just not what we have become used to.  To be filled with peace and joy in all circumstances is treasure indeed.

To the world at large this seems to be total absurdity, since they do not comprehend the invisible reality of God working among His people.

I want you to say with Me as I met My Apostles at the well of the Samaritan woman, ‘My food is to do the Will of My Father and to finish His work.’

In this way you abandon your thoughts and all that you desire to God, unburdening yourselves for the work of God, and leaving your concerns to Him.

This reminds me somewhat of when Jesus told disciples about His death and that they must eat His body and drink His blood, and many of them left because it was a teaching to them that was too hard for them to absorb with their human minds, as Eucharist is still too hard for our Protestant brethren to delve into and grasp.   What He asked his disciples to believe was absurd then, and what He asks us to believe is absurd now - at least with our human eyes.  But with our eyes of faith we can see more clearly, and can add our Amen to his request.

I love you, and want freedom to be yours, it is for your greatest good in the fulfillment of the commission, to love God and others, that I ask of you to surrender now the things that encumber.

May peace fill you as I grant this grace, as it has never been so urgent before, and so great an opportunity for you to advance in the coming steps to the illumination of the world.

 It takes courage to read this, believe it, and allow Him to do what He must so that we can be who He wants and needs us to be.

He speaks in the last phrase about the "illumination of the world."  We think that we are an illuminated society.  We have so much knowledge that did not exist before.  We have learned more in the last decade than in the previous century, and our knowledge keeps growing exponentially.  But, in our thirst for knowledge we have lost track of Wisdom, which is even more important.  Having all the knowledge of the world is of no value if it is not applied with Wisdom.

God illuminates us with His Wisdom, and fills us to bursting with His Holy Spirit, if only we say "Yes Lord."  Our yes to Him is like Mary's yes to the Holy Spirit.  It is an act of submission of our will to the Divine Will.  Our submission to Him is not giving up freedom, but gaining complete and total freedom, freedom to be the best we can be, to be what we were created for, what God had in mind for us from before time began.

Will be allow our Joy to be unencumbered?  Will we allow ourselves to be set free?

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Breaking It Down - Prophecy from Ridgetown Ontario October 25, 2011

Over at Life in the Spirit this prophecy appeared today.  It is entitled "Bread of Life".  I have reproduced it below, but it is chopped up with my explanations about its content.  The original content is in red.
                           
You have known and acknowledged that I have called and chosen you.
People of prayer have felt the call of the Lord in their lives.  They have been led to begin to repent of their sins and to turn their hearts to doing God's Will in their lives.  

We have begun to see that the things of this world are really not important, but that the people of it are, and they, just like we were, are trapped in the lure of this world, and its empty promises.
If you have felt this in your life, then you are to know that you have been called and chosen by God for this place and this time.
 
 I have selected to make of you a vessel for the continued sanctification and nourishment of your families especially those who have left the faith and the Sacraments.

One of the things in life that is now a cause of sadness for me is how our children have abandoned the Catholic faith, in practice if not fully in their hearts.  Their lives and the lives of our siblings, their children and loved ones and of many of our acquaintances and friends are modeled after the world we inhabit and not the Saviour of the World who came for us and died, and then was resurrected for us that we might have life to the full in Him.

One of the reasons for the falling away in our society of the once faithful has been the influence of the devil in this age.  Part of the behavior of our children and siblings is their response to the sinful example of my own life to them for so much of my life.  If I had me for a father or a brother would I behave any differently than my children and siblings?

But, if we can see that we have been called out of the muck and mire, how are we to help others our of it, particularly if they, like us before, have no idea that they are stuck in the muck.

But, God says here that we are to be vessels of their sanctification, all those who we shed silent tears for.  Many of the tears I shed for those of my family is for how they were lured deeper into lives of sin by my own sinfulness. 
In using you as My instruments, many would otherwise be forever lost, starving for Spiritual food, without My intervention.
Here, God tells us that our weeping and mourning will not be wasted, and that we are called to be His Instruments to help feed them the spiritual food that God has been giving to us.  He wants us to share His food, His Body and Blood, with them.  But How?
You will stand in the gap, maintaining the lifeline of grace, Hope in the wake of the coming Chastisement.
We are not useless.  We can stand in the gap for them, praying for them, loving them where they are, and by living lives worthy of the calling of God on our own lives, we can be signs to them in times of trouble as in the coming Chastisement.
Ahh!  The coming Chastisement.  We don't know what that is really going to be, but we cannot look at the weather patterns or lack thereof in our world, the starvation happening in our world, both physical and moral, the economic uncertainties that exist, particularly since the latest recession started in 2008.  With the rule of abortion, same sex marriage, and general lawlessness that is prevailing, can God stand back, and not chastise us to bring us back to Him?
You will be My chosen vessels sent to others as well, who are in need of My healing, deliverance and peace.
We will be sent to help others as well, maybe next door, maybe across the globe.  Can any of us, if our hearts are coming into tune with God not see the need for healing, deliverance and finally peace in this sin sick world.
Just as you can do nothing on your own, always be totally infused in Me as your source of food and strength for the Mission to which you have been called.
But, chosen though we may be, we are not in this alone, not guided by our own selves, but are to be totally filled with Him as our food and strength to fulfill the calling on us.  Whew!  That takes a load off of my mind.  My sin has been a part of what has led so many to abandon God in this day and age, not mine alone, but mine is every bit as big a part of this disease as anyone else's.   But, God will fill me up with Him, so that I can be Him to my family, to friends, to strangers on the journey.
Your supply replenished as a Ciborium filled with consecrated Hosts ready to feed the poor.

In the Catholic Mass, the Ciborium is a gold container with a lid on it that holds the consecrated body (sacramental bread) of our Lord Jesus Christ.  When Mass is said, the priest consecrates the body and blood of Jesus and refills the Ciboria/  God is saying that as simply (though mystically) as this is done, so we shall be filled with Him for our journey.  The symbolism of this is wonderful.


You yourself will be My Ciborium, I am the Bread of Life.
And it gets better.  We will be a Ciborium, filled with the Bread of Life.  We will be filled and refilled with Him, Our Saviour.
Give what you have received from Me to the many who are in dire need.
So, we are then able to give what we have received, with no need to horde it, because it will be refilled as we need.  How cool is that!
First must be your families of which you are closely related, then to those I bring to you without their being aware.
 Oh! Sage advice there, but what would you expect from God who so loves us.  Our first responsibilities are to our families.  They have been hurt by our sin, but they are also aided by our love, and as we grow more in love and less in sin, they gain benefits from it.

But, interesting phrase at the end of that sentence "those I bring to you without their being aware."  So, we don't go up to them and tell them that we have something and they need it.  No, we are to bring them the love of God without their being aware.  So, our job is not to scare them to Him, but love them to Him.
Loved one, will you serve Me in this way?  Will you allow Me to use you as a Ciborium to feed others?
So, the close, just as in any good sales effort.  After the above, dare we say no?  Not me, thank you very much.   Remember the hymn we sing from time to time "Here I am Lord".  One part of the lyric goes: "I will go, if you lead me.  I will hold your people in my heart."
From now on, because you have given to Me your hearts and your whole being, your time will be most valuable in the time remaining.
This statement is somewhat in response to a prayer that Jesus gave to Anne, a Lay Apostle in locutions in Cavan Ireland a number of years ago for the faithful to pray.  It goes: "Dear God in Heaven, I give You my life, my work and my heart.  In turn, give me the grace of obeying Your every direction to the fullest ppossible extent.  Amen."
If we have given our hearts as He says, and given Him our whole being, there will be an economy to the time that we have available to us.
Be at peace always for this will attract the ones who are most confused in the frantic world of speed and noise.
But, Lord how are we to bring them to you?  Ahh!  Be at peace.!

Now, Julian of Norwich makes sense, as she said:  "All will be well.  All will be well.  All manner of things will be well."  Whys did she need to repeat it three times?  Why did Jesus ask Peter: "Do you love me?' three times.  So, we would get it eventually.  It was important enough to repeat.

So, God tells us to be at peace ALWAYS.  That will attract them.  My Dear Wife and I have been praying together in the evenings, offering up intentions of those things and people of whom we are aware, praying the Rosary, the Rosary of the Seven Sorrows, a number of other specific prayers that have come to us over the years, and doing a brief reading with prayers.  We have noticed changes happening in the lives of loved ones and others, and have also had people come to our home and comment on how peaceful it is.  That is God at work.  It isn't us, though we are cooperating.  It is Him.
You will appear to stand alone and will seem not to conform with the world at large but it must be so.

Since He closed the sale above, He can now tell us a bit about the challenges that come with selling out for Him.   We will appear to stand alone.  I find that many of the things that people are talking about as important do not matter to me anymore.   Specifically, the matters do not really matter.  But, the people do, so there is detachment from their issues, but a growing attachment to the individuals and their hearts.
This is My plan for you and for all who will respond to My call, it falls on deaf ears too preoccupied.

It is a call for survival for salvation.
So, this is His Plan for me, for you, for all who read these messages, and for those who receive their messages in other ways.  We are not to be deaf to this call, and not to be preoccupied with the things of this world, like our work, our play, our television sets, and other distractions from the big picture, His Big Picture.

How important is this.  It is a call for SURVIVAL.  Our very survival is at stake here.  And more than that SALVATION.  He is the Way the Truth and the Life, and that leads to our salvation.  There is no other path way to get there.  Big house won't do it.  Money in the bank won't make it happen.

This is a call to be humble and contrite.  "A humbled and contrite heart You will not spurn."
Be the vessel of food for the needy, the Bread of Life for those who are not destined to perish.
"Be" the vessel of food, not "Do".  We are human beings, not human doings.  Our being is to be active, but we are to model Him for others.  Jesus lived His life on earth in humble obedience to the Father, even unto His death on the cross.  He was the vessel of food for the needy.  Can we be any less in this day and age?

We are to be the vessel of food for those "not destined to perish."  Jesus knows that some will perish.  He is not bound by time and space, so He knows the end, who said yes, and who said no to His Call.  All can say yes, but many will not.  But, let none say no because we did not come to them with Him and as Him as He calls us to.  I do not want that on my head.  Do you?
This is a mysterious concept for you but as you will trust in My work in you all will fall into place.
Wow! That's an understatement.   A mysterious concept, You say.  But, all we have to do is trust in His work, and it will fall into place.  It will slowly become clear, though still a mystery, but the veils that hide it from us will be pierced, and our eyes will see more clearly.
My desire is that none should perish whom My Father has given Me.
Though He knows that some are destined to fail, because they will choose not to follow Him, He does not want any to perish, as we were all given to Him by the Father.  We can choose not to follow, but His heart aches for those who will turn away, and He will not rest until He has exercised all options to draw all to Him.
                                                                                                                               INRI