8/12: Feast of Our Lady’s Immaculate Conception – Pray For Priests Today… 

Ave Maria, Gratia plena
Hail Mary, Full of Grace

Dominus tecum
The Lord is with thee

Benedicta tu 

Blessed art thou

in mulieribus
among women

Et benedictus fructus ventris
 tuae, Jesus
And blessed is the fruit of thy womb – Jesus

Sancta Maria
Holy Mary

Mater Dei
Mother of God,

Ora pro nobis, peccatoribus
Pray for us, sinners,


Nunc et in hora mortis
now and at the hour of our death

Amen.

Comment: 

Firstly, on this beautiful Feast, Catholic Truth wishes all readers, bloggers and visitors to this site every happiness and grace. For the sake of those visitors who may not be Catholics and unsure of the meaning of this Feast, you can read an explanation here

I suggest that we pray especially for priests today.  Our Lady has a particular love for priests – they are, after all, “other Christs” in the world.  Much as it pains me to say so, however, we are hearing of all sorts of terrible scandals involving the ordained, almost on a daily basis. The Devil has clearly targeted the priesthood at this time of terrible trial in the Church.  Given the exalted place of the priest in God’s plan of salvation, this should not surprise us:  “The priesthood is the love of the heart of Jesus. When you see a priest, think of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – St. John Vianney, patron saint of parish priests. 

As always with devotional threads, share your thoughts about any relevant issues, as well as your favourite prayers, hymns, etc.   

A very happy Feast of Our Lady’s Immaculate Conception to one and all…  

27/11: Feast of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal – Pray for Church and World…

Comment: 

There are lots of stories of miracles associated with the Miraculous Medal (hence the adjective!) but the one which follows is of special interest to me because it involves the well-known American priest, Fr John Hardon SJ, whose account of our Scottish martyr, St John Ogilvie is linked on the homepage of our website

The Ice-Cream Miracle…

Despite the miracles associated with the medal, many people don’t believe it can make such a difference. Fr. John A. Hardon, S.J. was one of those people. Not long after he had been ordained, a Vincentian priest encouraged him and others to promote the Miraculous Medal, because Blessed Mother really does work miracles through it. Although Fr. Hardon ordered a free pamphlet on how to bless the medals and enroll people in the Confraternity of the Miraculous Medal, he didn’t get one for himself.

But later, in 1948, when the United States priest encountered a ten-year-old boy who was in a coma after a sledding accident, he decided to see if it would help. A sister who worked at the hospital found one and a ribbon the priest could use to hang it around the boy’s neck. Even though the boy had been diagnosed with inoperable permanent brain damage, the priest read the prayer that enrolled the boy in the Confraternity of the Miraculous Medal.

As soon as he finished the prayer, the boy opened his eyes and asked his mother for ice cream. It was the first time he had spoken in nearly two weeks. New x-rays showed the brain damage had disappeared, and the boy was released from the hospital after about three days. Like the boy and his family, the priest’s life and his belief in the medal were forever changed. Source 

If you have any experiences of miracles yourself through wearing the medal, please share them with us here. Any related issues, favourite prayers, novenas, hymns etc. are also welcome, to help us mark this beautiful Feast day.  And, please, let us all remember to pray especially seriously on this Feast,  for great graces for all those involved in political life today; for those imposing totalitarian rule, whether knowingly or unknowingly, in the name of controlling the Coronavirus, and for a miraculous resolution to the election crisis in the USA. 

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, pray for us!

7/10: Feast of the Holy Rosary… For Your Diary – Public Rosary in Glasgow, 10/10 

Comment: 

The above hymn is set to a different tune from that with which most of us in Scotland grew up, but which is nowhere to be found on YouTube.  In any event, it’s a pretty tune, and gives honour to Our Lady on this beautiful Feast of the Most Holy Rosary

Notice. . . 

Our blogger Catherine has been asking us, for many months now, to publicise a Rosary for the specific intention of the Consecration of Russia, in the manner requested by Our Lady of Fatima. We are pleased to comply with Catherine’s request, given the fact that our political situation is now increasingly serious. We find ourselves living under a very different type of governance where our leaders  now simply issue orders – “rule by decree” – which is typical of totalitarian regimes. Our personal and religious freedoms have been removed  in the name of a virus which is harmless in most people who  become infected, and which contributes to the death of very few indeed.  Initially sold to us as a temporary measure, it is very clear that the drastic changes to our way of life are here to stay – indefinitely.  Elsewhere on this blog you will find evidence of the intention of the world’s “elite” to use the Coronavirus in order to “reset” the world.  Sound like a conspiracy theory?  As long as you don’t mind being proved wrong, click here

At Fatima, Our Lady warned that Russia would spread her errors, and chief amongst those errors is Communism.  Using fear of the Coronavirus, the Governments of the UK have managed to remove our personal and religious freedoms, promising that this is a temporary measure to prevent the spread of this non-deadly virus. 

Fear has now gripped the population, including the clergy; priests and bishops are pledged to co-operate in implementing Government rules and regulations in our churches. Thus, we are happy to comply with Catherine’s request for a public rosary specifically dedicated to praying for the graces necessary to bring the Pope and Bishops of the world to see the need to  obey Our Lady and properly consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart. 

Arrangements for Public Rosary, Saturday, 10 October, 3pm. . . 

Meet at the Clyde Walkway, opposite St Andrew’s Catholic Cathedral on Clyde Street, Glasgow, at 3pm

Father Stephen Dunn will lead the fifteen decades of the Rosary, as well as the very short Litany of Our Lady of Loretto and the Prayer to St Michael, Archangel. 

A friend of Catherine’s has offered to bring a bier holding a statue of Our Lady of Fatima, which means that we may be able to process during the Rosary. We will either stand to pray or process. 

We ask everyone who can manage to come along, because public prayer is very powerful, very pleasing to God at the best of times and especially at this time, given that He has been denied the worship due to Him for months now, because of State control over the Church.

This thread will remain open for questions – Catherine will respond to any enquiries in the comments below. 

Our Lady, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, pray for us!  

27/11: The Miraculous Medal – Best Practice in Spreading this Sacramental…

Below, listen to the beautiful sermon delivered by Father Linus Clovis, well known pro-life priest who, to our delight, accepted our invitation to address our Conference in June,  2016 on the topic “Francis – A Pope For Our Times.”   Here, he recounts two amazing miracles which are associated with the Miraculous Medal…

Comment:

Only last Sunday after Mass, I was introduced to a young non-Catholic man who, for the first time, had attended the traditional Latin Mass, and in the course of the conversation he explained that he had turned his back on his worldly, Godless life. He was now “researching” the Faith and had been learning quite a bit about the crisis in the Church.  It was a very interesting chat, but what struck me most forcibly was that a young mother who was participating in the conversation chose a moment to offer the young man a Miraculous Medal on a blue thread  (encouraging him to find a chain in due course!) And, with the medal, she gave him a small explanatory booklet.  In very few words, she exhorted him to wear the medal round his neck, as this was be the best possible help he would get in his research… He accepted the medal and booklet, so please pray for him. 

It got me thinking, though, that many, probably most, Catholics would have held back, keen to be “prudent”, not want to put the young man off the Church by appearing to be too pushy.

Thus, it would be useful to learn from others the various ways in which each of us might spread devotion to this powerful sacramental.  The young mother mentioned above, tells me that she carries some medals and leaflets with her when out and about,  with the aim of trying to distribute one at every opporunity. 

Your ideas – and stories of miracles associated with the medal – are very welcome on this thread.

Happy Feast of the Miraculous Medal, to one and all… 

11/2: Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes…

Comment:

We ask bloggers and readers to please pray for our friends and relatives who are suffering at this time; on this Feast, we remember especially supporters/readers of Catholic Truth who have asked us to remember them in our prayers. Our Lady of Lourdes, health of the sick,  pray for them.
Feel free to add your own petitions for prayer on this thread, and, as with all Feast Day threads, post your favourite hymns, prayers, experiences, accounts of miracles, funny stories etc.

Between February 11 and July 26, 1858, Bernadette Soubirous, a 14-year-old peasant girl, experienced 18 apparitions of the Virgin Mary in the nearby Massabielle grotto. During the 9th vision, an underground spring with healing powers was revealed. The Holy See recognizes 67 miracles attributable to the water that flows from it.
For more details of the story of Lourdes, click on the image above.

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?  

A Very Happy Feast of the Assumption!

Wishing all our bloggers and readers a very happy Feast of the Assumption.  Feel free to share your favourite prayers, hymns, stories – even your favourite jokes, of the good clean fun variety – to celebrate the Feast.  But first, click here to read Munificentissimus Deus – the Apostolic Constitution of Pope Pius XII defining the dogma of the Assumption in 1950.  

13/7: Fatima Centenary of Vision of Hell

The Lady told Lucia: …Sacrifice yourselves for sinners, and say many times, especially whenever you make some sacrifice: ‘O Jesus, it is for love of You, and for the conversion of sinners, and in reparation for the sins committed against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.’“ 

As Our Lady spoke these last words (Lucia said) she opened her hands once more, as she had done during the two previous months. The rays of light appeared to penetrate the earth, and we saw, as it were, a vast sea of fire. Plunged in this fire were demons and souls in human form like transparent burning embers, all blackened or burnished bronze, floating about in that conflagration, now raised into the air by the flames which issued from within themselves, together with great clouds of smoke, now falling back on every side like sparks in huge fires, without weight or equilibrium, amid shrieks and groans of pain and despair, which horrified us and made us tremble with fear (it must have been this sight which caused me to cry out, as people say they heard me). The demons could be distinguished by their terrifying and repellent likeness to frightful and unknown animals, black and transparent like burning coals. That vision only lasted for a moment, thanks to our good Heavenly Mother, Who at the first apparition had promised to take us to Heaven. Without that, I think that we would have died of terror and fear.”

The Explanation of the Vision

Our Lady said to us, so kindly and so sadly: “You have seen Hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end, but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the reign of Pius XI. When you see a night illumined by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God, that He is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the Church and of the Holy Father.

To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the Consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. 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. In Portugal, the dogma of the Faith will always be preserved etc.”

Our Lady then taught the children a prayer to add to the end of each mystery of the Rosary: O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fire of Hell, Take all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need.

The seers photographed after the vision of Hell.

Comment:

Believe it or not, there are actually Catholics who disapprove of Our Lady showing the children the vision of Hell.  Why on EARTH would anyone think or say such a thing? 

There is no shortage of warnings about Hell in Sacred Scripture, and saints down the centuries have had visions of the torments awaiting souls in Hell: “I saw the torments of hell and those of purgatory; no words can describe them. Had poor mortals the faintest idea of them, they would suffer a thousand deaths rather than undergo the least of their torments during a single day.” St. Catherine of Siena.

So, rather than be shocked at the children of Fatima being shown the vision of Hell, the truly Catholic response  is one of gratitude; it is, surely,  a great grace to have had the dogma of Hell affirmed by Our Lady herself at the beginning of the 20th century, when it was to come under enormous attack.  Or perhaps you would have preferred a vision of Heaven? Share your thoughts…