Is Scotland Literally Out Of This World?

Scotland is to be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the first time, on September 3rd, at the Carfin Grotto.

The Scottish Bishops will pronounce the act of consecration, with the Bishop of Paisley, John Keenan, calling for Catholics to prepare for the event, spiritually, for 40 days beforehand. Click here to read the programme of preparation.  There are some real nuggets for discussion on that list, so share your thoughts on the planned preparation.

Comment:

Thing is, I don’t get it. We’re told by popes, bishops and priests that Our Lady’s request to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart has been fulfilled – Russia does not need to be named – because (wait for this) Russia is “in the world” and the world has been consecrated by Pope John Paul II and Pope Francis. A bit like baptising all the babies in Glasgow and telling the family and friends who came along to see wee Johnny baptised that he’s been baptised, he just wasn’t named. Duh!

But, if consecrating the world suffices for the Russian consecration, why consecrate Scotland?

Is Scotland, really “out of this world” in the literal sense, and not just because they’ve got some nice scenery up there in the Highlands? Of course not. Scotland’s very much in (and of) this world, so why is there a need to consecrate Scotland by name, and not Russia?

Other countries have been consecrated, too, in recent years, and they’re all in the world, as far as I know. 

In fact, there have been so many consecrations of countries around the world in recent years, that very soon only Russia will be left un-consecrated! What’ll the hierarchy do then?  Priceless. Share your thoughts. The polite ones 😀   

Scotland is to be consecrated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the first time, on September 3rd, at the Carfin Grotto.

The Scottish Bishops will pronounce the act of consecration, with the Bishop of Paisley, John Keenan, calling for Catholics to prepare for the event, spiritually, for 40 days beforehand.  s programme of preparation

 

Who Is To Blame For The Failure To Consecrate Russia: You…Me…Popes?

For some time, now,  I have queried the claim (widely spread around these days, not least in the Blogosphere) that the Consecration of Russia has not been done because not enough of us are doing our bit by carrying out the Fatima requests to make the First Saturdays, pray the daily Rosary, wear the Brown Scapular etc.  In my humble opinion, that doesn’t make sense.  It doesn’t make sense to me that Our Lady would ask the Pope and Bishops to do this Consecration, in a precise manner, with no mention of any such conditions involving the rest of the faithful, and then, some years later, find the Fatima “experts” are blaming us for the failure of the Pope/Bishops to carry out the Consecration.  At our recent Conference, Father Nicholas Mary C.SS.R mentioned this claim, and when I queried it, he promised to find the origin of it. Today, I received the following email from him providing the source.  Father wrote:

Many sound authors quote Sr Lucia’s assertion that the consecration of Russia would take place “when a sufficient number are fulfilling the requests” of Our Lady of Fatima. There are also other passages from her writings and interviews where she says something similar. Nonetheless the origin of the precise quotation you questioned me about in public recently is as follows:

In 1946 Sr Lucia told John Haffert in an interview that “the Holy Father and all the Bishops will unite to consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.” He then writes:

“‘And do you think the conversion of Russia and peace will follow?’ I asked, catching my breath. ‘Yes,’ she said deliberately. ‘Yes, that is what Our Lady promised.’ ‘But when, Sister,’ I asked, ‘when will it happen?’ ‘It will happen,’ she replied. ‘There might be much more suffering (we had been talking of the awful civil war in Spain), more nations may be afflicted, but it will happen when a sufficient number are fulfilling the requests.’” [John M. Haffert – Russia will be converted, Washington, New Jersey, 1956 (2nd ed.), AMI Press, p. 246]

Although John Haffert (of Blue Army fame) later went astray, at the time of the above writing, he was regarded as a reliable Fatima source, so this quotation surprised me. Still, I noted that Sr Lucia does not claim to be quoting Our Lady; arguably, then, it is possible that she was giving her own opinion. In any case, I sent the above text to a friend in the south of England, who is something of an expert on Marian apparitions in general and Fatima in particular.  He replies:

It does seem difficult to refute [that quote]. But in 1929 at the Tuy vision, Our Lady said that the moment had come (emphasis mine) for the Pope & bishops to consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart.  I wouldn’t have thought it was entirely dependent on how many were living the Fatima message, because at that time, only 12 years after the initial events occurred, the full message wasn’t widely known then.  As I understand it, the message of Fatima applies to all humanity – for the laity, religious and priests to live the Fatima message:- i.e. the daily rosary, brown scapular, consecration to the Immaculate Heart, First Saturdays etc, and for the Pope and the Bishops in union with him to do all those things as well, but in their case also to specifically consecrate Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  The Fatima Network seems to say that there must be some co-operation from the laity in the Fatima message, obviously, but it doesn’t seem to make the consecration absolutely dependent on  it.  Source

Self-evidently, it can only be a good thing if more and more Catholics make the First Saturdays, pray the Rosary, wear the Brown Scapular and make sacrifices for sinners etc.  That’s not the issue.  The issue is, IS the fulfilment of those of Our Lady’s requests which apply to the faithful at large, a condition of the Pope’s/Bishops’ fulfilment of Our Lady’s request to them to consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart?  I can’t see it.  Can you?

Note: in the original post, submitted earlier today, I omitted Father Nicholas Mary’s name and mention of the Conference, but he has asked me to amend the post to make the context entirely clear: thus, I have restored that part of his email which states that I “questioned him in public”.  Those bloggers/readers who attended the Conference and witnessed the exchange will recall that it was polite and respectful. Some may consider that I, as a mere laywoman, had no right “questioning” Father “in public”, but I did so merely to correct what I believe to be a misleading opinion about where responsibility for the Consecration of Russia, lies.  If I am proven to be wrong, I will gladly apologise for questioning Father Nicholas Mary.  I am always grateful for necessary correction myself, so feel free to speak your minds, one and all.

Comments invited…

13 May: Fatima Visionaries Canonised?

From Pope to make Fatima child visionaries saints

Two child shepherds who claimed to have had holy visions in Fatima are to be made saints, possibly during Pope Francis’s upcoming trip to the Portuguese pilgrimage site.

Francis gave the go-ahead Thursday to canonise Jacinta and Francisco Marto who, along with their cousin Lucia Santos, claimed to have witnessed apparitions of the Virgin Mary in a miracle officially recognised by the Catholic Church.

The children said Mary appeared to them first on May 13, 1917, when Jacinta was seven years old, Francisco nine and Lucia 10.

The siblings, born into a poor family, fell sick during the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic which racked Europe after the First World War, with Francisco succumbing to the illness in 1919, and Jacinta following in 1920 aged just nine.

Both are buried at the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Fatima, which Francis will visit during his May 12-13 trip to mark the centenary of their first sight of Mary.

Francis’s approval of the miracle attributed to them — reportedly the curing of a Brazilian boy — was the final step needed before the children could be made saints.

They will be the youngest non-martyrs to be canonised in the history of the church.

After her first visit, the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared to them several times over a six-month period, always on the 13th.

This prompted thousands to gather on the spot on October 13, 1917, with several witnesses saying they had seen the sun “miraculously” dance in the sky.

Their cousin Lucia joined a convent. In 1941 she said she and the siblings had been given three secrets by Mary; the first was a vision of Hell and the second was a warning that another, more devastating war was looming — the Second World War.

The third secret she kept to herself for years, before finally being persuaded to write it down and it was delivered to the Vatican in 1957.

Finally published in 2000, it described a vision that was believed — with its depiction of the death of a man robed in white — to have been a prophecy of the 1981 assassination attempt on pope John Paul II.

The Argentine will be the fourth pope to visit the Fatima shrine, after Paul VI, John Paul II and Benedict XVI.  Source

Comment:

How did YOU vote in the poll? 

Consecration of Russia: God Got It Wrong! – World Apostolate of Fatima

Martin Blackshaw (aka blogger Athanasius) writes…

Alerted by the comment of a blogger here a few weeks ago, concerning a website claim by the World Apostolate of Fatima (WAF) that the consecration of Russia was done by Pope John Paul II in 1984, I began a correspondence exchange with a representative of that Apostolate with the aim of enlightening him and his colleagues to the truth of the matter.

For reasons of respect for privacy I will not name the individual with whom I debated the issue. All I will say is that, two weeks down the line, and after much batting back and forth of claim and counter-claim, I have been forced to conclude that the WAF is dangerous to unsuspecting Catholic souls and should be avoided.

In June of 1929, Our Lady appeared to Sr. Lucia in her convent in Tuy, Spain. As promised, the Blessed Virgin requested the consecration she had mentioned 12 years earlier at Fatima. Our Lady’s words were recorded in Sr. Lucia’s memoirs: The moment has come in which God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to make the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means... If My requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.

The moment has come in which God asks the Holy Father, in union with all the Bishops of the world, to make the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, promising to save it by this means…
If My requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.

There is an established principle in the Church when it comes to heresy, which is that a heresy containing elements of truth is much more dangerous than one that is an outright falsehood. The same principle applies in general wherever truth is paramount, be it WAF propaganda or the doctrines of secular ideologies.

Communism, for example, ensnared many because it sided with the poor working classes against the exploitation and injustices visited upon them by the rich and powerful. Accompanying its alluring empathy, however, was the lie that class warfare and a revolutionary overthrow of Church and State was the answer to all their problems.

The theoreticians, architects and implementers of the Communist utopia knew well how to woo the ignorant with promises of human dignity and equality for all. Like the poor beggars who fell for the same revolutionary rhetoric in 18th century France, however, the overthrow of Church and the established order was to result in a much more despotic governance than the one they had rid themselves of.

And so it proved in Russia and its satellites post-1917. Instead of freedom and their fill, as Communism had promised, the proletariat found itself more enslaved and hungry than before. It also found itself subject to mass extinction upon the whim of whatever paranoid ego maniac happened to murder his way to the top.

By the late 1980s the Soviet Union was so greatly in danger of internal collapse that it shifted its position to the delight of its long-suffering people. Now there was to be “Glasnost” and “Perestroika” (Openness and restructuring), a contingency plan laid out many decades before by Lenin himself.

All at once the Iron Curtain was withdrawn and western democracy was welcomed in together with its Capitalist ideals and market economy. Communism, it seemed, had failed in its objective and the world rejoiced.

For many lesser informed Catholics this was proof positive that the 1984 consecration of the world made by Pope John Paul II was accepted by heaven. Russia was converted, they said, though to what exactly remains a mystery to this day.

What has happened since, imperceptible to the masses, is that all Western governments including the United States have become more Socialist and atheistic in their governance, to the extent that God is today entirely banished from the political, economic and legislative life of almost all Western Democracies.

Evolutionism, first recognised and embraced by Karl Marx as the key to cultural anarchy, is now everywhere the fundamental global Gospel upon which all else is built and proceeds. Contrarily, The Creator, His Commandments and the natural law are dismissed as myths of a less enlightened age.

Complimenting this new vision for the new post-Christian Europe is a model of the old Supreme Soviet, called the European Union.

The Supreme Soviet was a series of legislative bodies (parliaments) based within the Kremlin that made all the laws by which the various Soviet Socialist Republics were bound. Though individual nation States in Europe are not yet entirely governed in the same way by the EU’s Brussels-based centralised government, this is the ultimate goal and many are walking blindly into it.

In their pre-Vatican II Encyclicals, the Popes warned of the dangers threatening nations should Communism ensnare them. They predicted in particular that such nations would rapidly decline financially, spiritually and morally. Who would argue that this is not the very scenario we are witnessing today in all the nations of Europe?

Yes, it would appear that the “Glasnost” and “Perestroika” introduced by Gorbachev nearly thirty years ago signified less the death of the Communist ideology in Russia than its surreptitious expansion to every corner of the globe.

It was the West that was opened up to restructuring; the moral voice of the Catholic Church having been silenced by the lure of Catholic/Orthodox relations at Vatican II, whose liberal prelates became metaphorically high on a truth-altering drug long promoted by Communism, called ecumenism.

Cardinal Josef Tomko, friend and advisor to Pope John Paul II at the time of the 1984 consecration of the world, later admitted that it was precisely for fear of damaging Catholic/ Orthodox ecumenical relations that he personally advised the Pope not to mention Russia.

That John Paul II complied with the request of Cardinal Tomko rather than with the request of Our Lady is obvious from the following unscripted line the Pontiff inserted into his ‘Act of Entrustment of the World’ at that time: Enlighten especially the peoples whose consecration and entrustment by us you are awaiting.”

When I brought this glaring fact of a non-mention of Russia to the attention of my WAF correspondent, he rather indifferently replied that he personally saw it as the Pope exercising his power to bind and loose by prudently choosing a less direct form of consecrating Russia in order to avoid any persecution of Russian Catholics. He even drew ridiculous parallels with the wartime prudence of Pius XII in dealing with the persecution of the Jews to bolster his theory.

In other words, he was saying that heaven hadn’t really thought through the practical consequences of a direct consecration of Russia by the Pope to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and so the Pope was forced to employ corrective tactics that were more prudent than God’s.

I put it to him that what he was suggesting bordered on blasphemy, that all John Paul had demonstrated by his actions was disobedience to God and a woeful lack of trust in the divine promise.

To this he replied that Sister Lucy had herself confirmed heaven’s acceptance of the 1984 consecration. He even directed me to a DVD for sale on Amazon in which Cardinal Vidal apparently has Sister Lucy making the confirmation on camera.

My obvious response was that any such video confirmation from Sister Lucy, if it were genuine, would have been utilised to the full by the Vatican a long time ago. It would not be left as an obscure production available only to the few who stumble upon its existence and are prepared to fork out good money to buy a foreign language copy from Amazon.

Besides this, Sister Lucy is on record as having several times testified to the non-fulfilment of the 1984 consecration. She declared the fact, for example, in a 1985 interview with the Blue Army’s Spanish magazine Sol de Fatima, and again in 1987 to the journalist Enrico Romero.

A more thorough examination of the facts can be found here: http://www.cfnews.org/page10/page91/consecration-addup.html

So then I asked him about the non-participation of the world’s bishops in the 1984 act, to which he replied that they did in fact participate in “spiritual union” with the Pope. The problem with this strange assertion, however, is that said “spiritual union” was not clearly discernable to the world and is very hard to prove.

Had not Our Lord expressed to Sister Lucy His desire that His Mother’s Immaculate Heart be honoured beside His Sacred Heart, which is why he wants the world to see the conversion of Russia resulting from a public and solemn act to the Immaculate Heart of Mary by the Pope and the bishops?

As far as my WAF correspondent is concerned, though, there never was a specific request from heaven for a public and solemn participation of the bishops with the Pope. This, said he, was a corruption of the Message introduced by some of the more extreme Fatima enthusiasts.

And so I came to the fruits of the 1984 act of John Paul II. I chronicled for him the non-conversion of Russia, its continued hostility to Catholicism, its exploding immorality and its renewed Cold War stance with the West that threatens shortly to erupt into global nuclear conflict. This last observation was made recently by a former Commander-in-Chief of the British Armed Forces.

I further chronicled the crisis in the Church, the deteriorating culture of Western Nations, the rise of Islamic terrorism, the conflicts in the Middle East and so many other manifestations of evil indicative of a heavenly request not fulfilled and a world consequently running headlong into the abyss.

To this observation my correspondent replied that God rarely brings about miraculous conversions by divine intervention, and so we must be patient and permit the fall of Communism in 1989 to produce eventually the fruits promised by Our Lady, which fruits, said he, are only delayed by the refusal of individuals to obey Our Lady’s request for recitation of the Rosary and fulfilment of the five First Saturday’s devotions of reparation.

So there we have it. It’s not the Pope and the Bishops of the world who have failed to meet Our Lady’s request, but the faithful who refuse to embrace the Rosary and the five First Saturday’s. It is the latter rather than the former who are responsible for the non-conversion of Russia. How very convenient!

To emphasise his point, my correspondent sent me a link to some EWTN writings on the subject of Fatima by the Neo-Modernist Fr. Robert J Fox. This told me all I needed to know about my correspondent and the Apostolate he represents. Read about Fr. Fox

Here: http://www.fatima.org/news/newsviews/1104frfox.asp

Here: http://www.fatima.org/news/newsviews/062504frfox1.asp

Here: http://www.fatima.org/news/newsviews/062504frfox2.asp

Here: http://www.fatima.org/news/newsviews/062504frfox3.asp

In summation. Like those heresies and ideologies I mentioned at the outset, the World Apostolate of Fatima proposes to readers of its website a great good, namely, the recitation of the Rosary and the five First Saturday’s devotion of reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. But then comes the poison, the liberal Modernist party line that Russia has been consecrated and the future looks rosy.

This single falsehood, so contradictory of the evidence before our eyes and so obstructive of an outpouring of God’s grace on Russia, the world, the Church and souls, undermines whatever truths the WAF otherwise confirms.

It is therefore incumbent upon all souls of good will to expose this and other so-called Fatima Apostolates that peddle the “Russia is consecrated” falsehood. For behind it lies the illusory ecumenical utopia envisioned and pursued at all costs by certain powerful Vatican officials. No less than the honour of Our Lady and the salvation of countless souls depends on our full objective fidelity to the truth about Fatima.

Comments invited…

We’d especially like to hear from those who consider that we are now enjoying the promised period of world peace AND from  those who agree with the World Apostolate of Fatima that it was necessary for the Pope to be “prudent”, given that God really didn’t understand the political implications of consecrating Russia… 

For the record, I’ve sent the link to this thread to the man in charge at WAF and invited him to contribute. 

Surely, Now’s The Time To Raise Most Important Issue In The World?

Below, a report of the planned meeting between the Pope and Vladimir Putin in Rome – surely an excellent opportunity to raise the question of the Consecration of Russia.  I say that, because I doubt that Putin will have any objection, and that puts the bishops in their place. I did read somewhere that he DID object once when it was put to him, but not sure whether that is true or not. Certainly, if he has no problem with it, why should the bishops? Read the report below and tell us if you agree…

POPE-PUTIN_2745743bVladimir Putin will raise the Ukraine crisis and the plight of Christians in the Middle East during a meeting with Pope Francis in Rome on Wednesday.

It will be Mr Putin’s second meeting with Pope Francis, and the latest episode in a long-running but sometimes fraught relationship between the Kremlin and the Vatican.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the president of Russia and the Bishop of Rome will cover “specific international problems, in particular the situation in Ukraine with emphasis on inter-religious relations and the activities of the Ukrainian Greek Catholics,” Kremlin spokesman Yuri Ushakov told reporters on Tuesday.

Russian leaders traditionally visit the Pope during any visit to Italy, and Russian and Soviet leaders have maintained links with the Vatican since formal contacts were established between the Holy See and the Kremlin under Mikhail Gorbachev.

For the Kremlin, these meetings are an important source of “supplementary external legitimacy,” said Andrei Zolotov, a Russian journalist who specialises in religious affairs. “That is particularly important for Moscow in the present political situation.”

At their last meeting in November 2013 the notoriously tardy Mr Putin kept the Pope and his aides waiting for nearly an hour (the Kremlin blamed the delay on protesters outside Mr Putin’s Rome hotel).

Mr Putin’s team hailed that meeting as a success, and it raised hopes of a rapprochement between the Catholic and Russian Orthodox Church hierarchy.

But analysts say a mooted historic meeting between the Pope and Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, is now off the cards – largely thanks to the war in Ukraine.

To date Pope Francis has avoided taking a strong line on the Ukraine crisis, confining himself to expression of dismay at a “war between Christians” and implicitly – but not specifically – condemning the annexation of Crimea by calling for respect for international law.

A Russia-backed rebel fires at Ukrainian army positions at Donetsk airport, eastern Ukraine (AP)

According to one leading Vatican analyst, the Russians have taken care to express their appreciation for that restraint.

Writing in Rome’s Corriere della Sera newspaper on Tuesday, Massimo Franco said that in the past few days Patriarch Ilarione of the Russian Orthodox Church had “discreetly” reaffirmed gratitude for the Vatican’s “independent” line.

That is partly because the Vatican is sees Mr Putin’s Kremlin as an ally in other areas.

Apart from a joint commitment to “traditional values” – most prominently in opposition to gay marriage – the Third and First Romes have shared interests in the Middle East.

 Pope Francis has also been outspoken in his condemnation of persecution of Christian minorities in the Middle East, blaming the fanaticism of groups like the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (Isil) for driving Christians from their homes.

The Vatican openly opposed Western countries entering the war in Syria, and some analysts suggest that the “moral pressure” of a vigil for peace led by Pope Francis in September 2013 was instrumental in averting airstrikes.

In turn, Mr Putin has sought to reassert Russia’s traditional claim to be the protector of Christians in the Middle East, and has long portrayed his ally Bashar Assad, the Syrian president, as a secular protector of religious minorities against violent Islamism.

Russian weapons deliveries and diplomatic cover at the United Nations have been crucial to Mr Assad’s survival since an uprising against his rule in 2011 broke into a full-blown civil war.

For the Vatican, that makes Mr Putin an “unavoidable and valuable interlocutor for containing Islamic terrorism,” said Mr Franco.

But Pope Francis is coming under increasing pressure from leaders of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church to take a more forceful line.

Sviatoslav Shevchuk, the Archbishop of Kiev Halych and the head of the Ukrainian church, has openly criticised the Vatican’s “ambivalence” over Russia’s role in the war.

“We understand Rome is trying to safeguard its ties with Moscow, but we also know Christ has always been on the side of those who suffer. In this conflict, it is Ukraine which is suffering – and the Holy See, whose diplomacy is service of the Gospel, should be at our side,” he said in May in an interview with La Croix, a French Catholic daily.

Most combatants on either side of the war in Ukraine are eastern Orthodox.

But the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church has been outspoken in its support of Kiev, and some fighters, especially on the pro-Russian side, see the war as a continuation of centuries of enmity between Orthodox Slavic civilization and the Catholic dominated West. Source