Islam, Terrorism & The Battle of Lepanto – 7 October: Feast of the Holy Rosary…


That light-hearted response to the threat to conquer Rome  contrasts with the reaction here

The following extracts are taken from How the 1571 Battle of Lepanto saved Europe…

For those who know little history, today’s battle with the Islamic State in the Middle East may seem new and unprecedented. It is not.

In a.d.  622, Mohammed set out from Medina to conquer the whole Christian world for Allah by force of arms.  Within a hundred years, his successors had occupied and pillaged every Christian capital of the Middle East, from Antioch through North Africa (home of Saint Augustine) and Spain.  All that remained outside Allah’s reign was the northern arc from Southern France to Constantinople…

Even today, in the eyes of political Islamists, the expansion of Islam is far from finished.  The dynamic obligation at the heart of their Islam is to conquer the world for Allah, and to incorporate it all into the great Islamic Umma.  Only then will the world be at peace.  Submission to Allah is the reason the world was created…


The Greatest Sea Battle in History: Lepanto, October 1571

For more than three years, Pope Pius V had labored mightily to sound alarms about the deadly Muslim buildup in the shipyards of Istanbul.  The sultan had been stung by the surprising defeat of his overwhelming invasion force in Malta in 1565.  The savagery of Muslim attacks on the coastal villages of Italy, Sicily, Dalmatia, and Greece was ratcheted upwards.  Three or four Muslim galleys would offload hundreds of marines, who would sweep through a village, tie all its healthy men together for shipment out to become galley slaves, march away many of its women and young boys and girls for shipment to Eastern harems, and then gather all the elderly into the village church, where the helpless victims would be beheaded, and sometimes cut up into little pieces, to strike terror into other villages.  The Muslims believed that future victims would lose heart and swiftly surrender when Muslim raiders arrived.  Over three centuries, the number of European captives kidnapped from villages and beaches by these pirates climbed into the hundreds of thousands.

The reason for this kidnapping was that the naval appetite for fresh backs and muscles was insatiable.  Most galley slaves lived little more than five years.  They were chained to hard benches in the burning Mediterranean sun, slippery in their own excrement, urine, and intermittent vomiting, often never lying down to sleep.  The dark vision that troubled the pope during the late 1560s was of even more horrible calamities to befall the whole Christian world, bit by bit.  But unity in Europe was hard to find, and even more scarce was the will to fight for survival.

There is no point here in giving the whole narrative of the battle. Suffice it to say that in the center, the volleys from the galleasses out in front destroyed one Muslim vessel after another. ..

As news of the great victory of October 7 reached shore, church bells rang all over the cities and countryside of Europe.  For months, Pius V had urged Catholics to say the daily rosary on behalf of the morale and good fortune of the Christian forces and, above all, for a successful outcome to the highly risky preemptive strike against the Turkish fleets.  Thereafter, he declared that October 7 would be celebrated as the Feast of “Mary, Queen of Victory.”  A later Pope added the title “Queen of the Most Holy Rosary” in honor of the laity’s favorite form of prayer.  All over the Italian peninsula, great paintings were commissioned — whole galleries were dedicated — to honor the classic scenes of that epic battle.  The air of Europe that October tasted of liberties preserved.  The record of the celebrations lives on in glorious paintings by Titian, Tintoretto, and many others.  Click here to read How the 1571 Battle of Lepanto saved Europe

Comment: 

It is a well established fact that Our Lady won the Battle of Lepanto for the Christian armies, and so maybe it’s time to redouble our prayers, take Our Lady at her word and trust totally in the power of the Rosary to defeat heresies, and time, too, for us to remember the words of the Fatima seer, Sister Lucia, that there is no problem, whether temporal or spiritual that cannot be overcome by the power of the Rosary.  That’s quite a promise. 

So we learn plenty about the power of the rosary; Is there anything else to learn from the Battle of Lepanto in the context of the contemporary threat from Islamist terrorism? Are we, for example, praying sufficiently for the conversion of Muslims?  

16 July: Feast of Our Lady of Mt Carmel

The Feast of Our Lady of Mt Carmel is a very good time to learn about the Brown Scapular, and for those who are not yet enrolled in it to resolve to do so.  Click here for a comprehensive history of the Brown Scapular, with details of miracles and the facts about the (often misunderstood) Sabbatine Privilege.

Our Lady of Mt Carmel, pray for us!

Comment:

Those who are not yet enrolled in the Brown Scapular but would like to be, might be interested to learn that enrolments will take place on the Feast, 16th July, in both the Glasgow and Edinburgh SSPX chapels after Mass.  In  Glasgow, Mass begins at 9.45.am here, and in Edinburgh Mass begins at 1pm here.

Note: in Glasgow, on Sundays, there is free parking on Sauchiehall Street, and a small all-day charge at the National Car Park in Cambridge Street, both a short walk from the chapel.  In Edinburgh, there is usually parking on the street outside the church, but the pavement is currently being restored, so this is not possible at the present time. There is, however, a car park a few hundred yards north of the chapel, first opening on the right. It is signposted St Leonard’s Parking. Usually free on Sundays.

General Discussion (15)

If there’s something of interest in the news that’s not covered in one of the topic threads, or you have a question to ask, a comment you’d like to  make about anything under the sun, more or less, this is the thread for you.

However, please check first, to ensure that you haven’t missed a topic thread or another thread where it would be appropriate to post your comment, as the GD discussion threads fills up very quickly.

Readers, all too often, go straight to the General Discussion thread to post news that is already the topic of a thread or to ask a question that is already being discussed elsewhere. So, do your Sherlock Holmes – at the very least check the side-bar – before posting here, please and thank you! Your “news” may simply be a different angle to a subject already under discussion, so do, please check before posting your comment here.   OR it would be helpful if you could check out the most recent thread on that subject, in case it is still open. In which case, your comment would be best placed there.  Example: if your news is about the Mass or the SSPX, scroll or check the archives to find the most recent thread on that topic.   If there is no thread still open, then it’s safe to post on the GD thread.     

Feel free, also, to share your favourite spiritual reading books, prayers and devotions on this thread. Whatever.   Enjoy!

To read previous 10 General Discussion Threads, click on the links listed below.

(1) click here  (2) click here  (3) click here  (4) click here  (5) click here
(6) click here  (7) click here (8) click here  (9) click here (10) click here
(11) click here (12) click here   (13) click here   (14) click here  

Bl Alexandrina – A Modern Mystic…

“ I desire that, after your death, your life may be known, and that will happen; I shall see to it.  It will reach the ends of the earth.”

Our Lord speaking to Blessed Alexandrina, 22nd November 1937.

The desire of Jesus to see a widespread knowledge of the life of Blessed Alexandrina Maria da Costa of Portugal is starting to be fulfilled, as devotion to her grows steadily throughout the world.  One of the great mystics of modern times, a ‘victim soul’ chosen by Christ to suffer in atonement for the sins of humanity, she appears set to become an important and well-loved saint in the Universal Church.

Her life gives us an example of complete fidelity to the will of Christ, and also presents an astonishing and undeniable explosion of the supernatural to an increasingly secular world. 

Blessed AlexandrinaBedridden for life from the age of twenty, after sustaining a serious injury some years earlier while trying to escape from an attack on her virtue, she suffered unspeakable pain throughout her life and mystically underwent the Passion of Christ on Fridays to atone for the sins of humanity.  She also had frequent ecstasies during which she saw and spoke with Our Lord and Our Lady, and offered her sufferings to bring about the consecration of the world by Pope Pius XII to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, an act which in turn shortened the duration of World War II.

Her life reaffirms the immense value of suffering offered in union with Jesus, and stands as a beacon of hope to those who suffer in any way, and a sign of contradiction to those who would deny the value of suffering offered in union with Jesus.  She prayed especially for youth, and has been proposed by the Church as “a model of purity and perseverance in the Faith for today’s youth.”

Although she was never able to visit the site of the apparitions of Our Blessed Lady at Fatima, Alexandrina’s extraordinary story has many connections to the Fatima events, and her message is essentially the same: “ Do penance, sin no more, pray the Rosary, receive the Eucharist ”.  Because of this, she has been described as the ‘fourth seer of Fatima’.  One can point to miraculous occurrences in the lives of all the saints, but Alexandrina herself became a living miracle , for in the last thirteen years of her life, she ate and drank absolutely nothing, existing on the Holy Eucharist alone.

Pope John Paul II said the following about Alexandrina in his homily at her beatification ceremony in 2004:-

“ ‘Do you love me?’, Jesus asks Simon Peter, who replies: ‘Yes Lord, you know that I love you’. The life of Blessed Alexandrina Maria da Costa can be summarized in this dialogue of love. Permeated and burning with this anxiety of love, she wished to deny nothing to her Saviour. With a strong will, she accepted everything to demonstrate her love for him. A ‘spouse of blood’, she mystically relived Christ’s passion and offered herself as a victim for sinners, receiving strength from the Eucharist: this became her only source of nourishment for the final 13 years of her life.  With the example of Blessed Alexandrina, expressed in the trilogy ‘suffer, love, make reparation’, Christians are able to discover the stimulus and motivation to make ‘noble’ all that is painful and sad in life through the greatest evidence of love: sacrificing one’s life for the beloved.  Secret of holiness: love for Christ.”  Click here to read more…

Comments invited 

Managing Medjugorje: Vatican Cop-Out

THE EPONYMOUS FLOWER reports : ‘Cardinal Vinko Puljic, Archbishop of Sarajevo and member of the Pontifical Commission of Inquiry, which is mandated to study the phenomenon of Medjugorje, said to have “recommended” to the pope to come to a decision on Medjugorje only on “administrative” aspects, but not on the “phenomena” and messages. [The messages are obviously heretical, if words can mean anything at all.]   medjugorje_map

The Virgin Mary is alleged to have regularly appeared at a parish of Medjugorje for the past 35 years to six “seers”, which is under the jurisdiction of the Bishop of Mostar. Bishop Ratko Peric, like his predecessor Pavao Zanic (to 1993), regarded the Medjugorje phenomenon with great skepticism. Bishop Zanic declared as competent ecclesiastical authority that the alleged apparitions were “not supernatural” in character ( non constat de supernaturalitate ). This decision was supported and confirmed in 1991 by the Yugoslav Bishops’ Conference and still applies today.

People have “the right to go to Medjugorje to pray and do penance,” explained Cardinal Puljic in December for the Turkish state news agency Anadolu Agency (AA). Medjugorje “is one of the largest confessional benches, not only the Balkans, but in all of Europe, and that has to be somehow taken into account when deciding which one will meet”.
Cardinal Puljic therefore recommended to the Pope a decision to “solely” address the “administrative aspects”, responding in “no way to the question of appearances.” “When it comes to visions and messages, which are still under consideration, the Church does not move quickly. The Church does not hurry, but always arrives at a conclusion. I’m not worried about the attitude of the Holy Father or those of the CDF. “
Concerning the pilgrims, the Cardinal, that which has already been said applies: “It is important that the people who go to Medjugorje, pray for the strengthening of their faith and are comforted in returning home.”

 “Solomonic” or “Educational” solution?

Behind the scenes there has been a tug of war for years in the Vatican around Medjugorje. The Vatican became increasingly cautious, while some Church officials, including the Archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Schönborn, are convinced of the authenticity of the phenomenon. [Not exactly a vote of confidence.] Since the 80s, however, there has been a negative decision on Medjugorje. Since then, it is argued by proponents that Rome had not yet decided. A decision of Rome, however, not canonically necessary to be provided. Among the supporters of Medjugorje, there is the claim that Pope John Paul II. and the then faith Prefect of the CDF, Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger have commented positively about Medjugorje, which has been denied in writing by Cardinal Ratzinger 1998.

In 2009 the CDF confirmed the jurisdiction of the Bosnian bishops and thus the negative decision of 1991.
In 2010, Pope Benedict XVI. finally established a Vatican commission of inquiry to examine the phenomenon of Medjugorje and bring about the much-discussed decision in Rome. The signals emanating from the Commission were negative in the matter. At the turn of 2012, the final report was placed in front of the Pope.

Since then, a decision has been delayed by some church circles, helped along by the unexpected resignation of Benedict XVI. The Commission of Inquiry had completed its work, yet remained for another two years in office until 2014.
A postponement is argued for since it is concerned that a negative decision could unsettle many believers and shake in their faith. In fact, those in the know confirm that tension is very high among Medjugorje. The danger of divisions within the Bosnian Franciscans makes the regular rounds. An argument from experience- which is not taken lightly in Rome, confirms the reluctance of Pope Francis. Francis has expressed himself repeatedly against “an addiction to apparitions and messages.”

On 6 June 2015, the Pope had himself expressed the view of an early decision on the return flight from Sarajevo. But nothing has happened since then. At the end of June, Andrea Tornielli, the papal household vaticanist said that a decision would wait until “after the summer break”, perhaps would even be given “at the Synod of Bishops”.

An “administrative” solution has presented itself after months. A decree lays on the desk of the pope which has been formulated since the spring of 2015. Medjugorje is recognized as a place of prayer, entrusted to the pastoral care of the Franciscan Order, but is subordinated to the jurisdiction and supervision of Rome. There will be no light construction because it interferes with the rights of the Mostar diocese. Public appearances of the “seers” are also suppressed or completely prevented. As far as a non-decision on the “apparitions” and “messages” it is argued that the phenomenon is still ongoing and therefore, to make a final judgment prematurely was indeed impossible. There is talk in Rome of a “Solomonic” or “educational” solution. Source 

Comment:

This is just what we expected from the Vatican,  really.  Yet another dereliction of duty.  It’s patent nonsense to say that “the phenomenon is on-going” – that’s the blankety blank problem, for goodness sake. It WILL be on-going as long as the money keeps rolling in.  Whoever said: “Medjugorje is the Devil’s answer to Fatima” was on to something.  Or perhaps you disagree? Before you say so, watch one of the “visionaries” at work in the video below…

Pope Francis: Mother Teresa Canonisation Approved…

Pope Francis has approved of the second miracle of Mother Teresa, thereby clearing the way for her sainthood.  mother-teresa-quotes-12

On 15 December he received the final approval of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints meeting.

The canonisation is expected to be sometime later next year. 

Speaking to Sky News, Thomas D’Souza, the Archbishop of Kolkata, a city which Mother Teresa made her home, said: “We are very happy and overjoyed with this news, the city of Kolkata has been waiting for this day. We thank God of the great gift he bestowed on us with Mother Teresa.”

According to a statement from the Vatican, the second miracle involved a Brazilian man with a viral brain infection that resulted in multiple abscesses with triventricular hydrocephalus.

In December 2008 the patient was in a coma and dying and various treatments had been ineffective.

The patient’s wife is said to have continuously sought the intercession of Mother Teresa for her husband

He was wheeled into the operating theatre for emergency surgery at 18:10 on 9 December 2008 .

At the same time, his wife went to her church and along with the pastor begged Mother Teresa for the cure of her dying husband.

At 18:40 the neurosurgeon returned to the operating room and found the patient inexplicably awake and without pain.

He asked the doctor: “What I am doing here?”

The next morning he was examined, fully awake and without any headache.

On 10 September this year, the medical commission voted unanimously that his cure was inexplicable in the light of current medical knowledge.

The man, now completely healed, resumed his work as a mechanical engineer without any particular limitation.  Source

Comment

Is this latest canonisation to be welcomed? Mother Teresa was certainly keen to help the poor, and was enthusiastic about making the world a better place: to her credit, she spoke out clearly against abortion, even in the presence of politicians. The miracle recounted above seems pretty convincing. Is all of that enough for canonisation? Should we be celebrating?

Feast of the Immaculate Conception…

On this major Feast of Our Lady, we enjoy an exchange of favourite hymns, prayers, favours granted, and, of course, jokes and stories of interest.

Happy Feast Day to everyone!