Understanding the "Urgency" of Our Time


Noah’s Ark, Artist Unknown

 

THERE is a quickening of events in nature, but also an intensifying of human hostility against the Church. Yet, Jesus did speak of labor pains which would be "only the beginning." If that is the case, why would there be this feeling of urgency which so many people sense about the days in which we are living, as if "something" were imminent?

 

NOAH AND THE NEW ARK

God instructed Noah to build an ark, an enormous construction project which took decades. This ark was visible to everyone who walked by, and would have been considered extremely odd given that they lived in arid land far from the sea. When the animals arrived in a cloud of dust, it also would have created a great scene. Then at last, Noah was instructed to enter the ark with his family seven days before the flood (Genesis 7:4).

Hasn’t God been making a great scene for several decades now about the world’s present condition of unprecedented sinfulness? He has done so—signaling the signs of the times—by providing a new ark, the "Ark of the New Covenant": the Blessed Virgin Mary (she is called the "Ark of the New Covenant" since, as the ark of the Old Covenant carried the Ten Commandments, Mary carried the Word of God in her womb (see Exodus 25:8.) Mary is also recognized in typology as a symbol of the Church, just as Noah’s ark is a type of the Church. Mary carried the "new covenant" within her, the promise of a "new heavens and a new earth," just as Noah’s ark carried the promise of a renewed world.)

The contemporary manifestation of her role as the new Ark began primarily with her apparition in Fatima, Portugal, when she called us into the "refuge of her Immaculate Heart," and has increased in various apparitions throughout the world. 

Then God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant could be seen in the temple. There were flashes of lightning, rumblings, and peals of thunder, an earthquake, and a violent hailstorm. A great sign appeared in the sky, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars… (Rev 11:19-12:1)

It is worth noting that after the appearance of the "ark of his covenant… the woman clothed with the sun," the next sign in the "sky" is that of a "huge red dragon":

Its tail swept away a third of the stars in the sky and hurled them down to the earth.  (Rev 12:4)

The stars have been interpreted by some as the "princes of the Church", or clergy fallen into apostasy (Steven Paul; The Apocalypse—Letter by Letter; iUniverse, 2006). The apparitions of this past century appear to be the harbinger of a great apostasy or rebellion… and a coming purification.

 

MARY, ARK AND REFUGE

It is time for us to cease being overly concerned about the anti-Marian doubts of non-Catholics. So too we should no longer trouble ourselves over those modern Catholics who consider devotion to Mary as archaic, outmoded, and even "bad theology." Her role is firmly established in Church Tradition, and we have been given extraordinary and miraculous confirmations of her maternal presence in our times.

Yes, Mary is gathering her little lambs into her bosom before the approaching storm.

Do not damage the land or the sea or the trees until we put the seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God. (Rev 7:3)

She asks us to co-operate with her the way Noah was asked to co-operate with God. The Lord could have gathered the animals into the ark Himself, but He asked Noah and His family to help. And so, our Mother desires that we not only enter the refuge of her Immaculate Heart, but bring souls with us, "two by two, male and female." We are to bring a harvest of souls through our witness, suffering, and prayers.

Those that entered were male and female, and of all species they came, as God had commanded Noah. (Gen 7:16) 

There is a name emblazoned upon the bow of this great Ark. That name is "Mercy." God is pursuing us with extraordinary patience providing every opportunity for repentance. The message of Divine Mercy of St. Faustina is, one could say, the ramp into the Ark.

I am giving them the last hope of salvation; that is, the Feast of My Mercy.  If they will not adore My mercy, they will perish for all eternity… tell souls about this great mercy of Mine, because the awful day, the day of My justice, is near.Diary of Divine Mercy, St. Faustina, n. 965 (see The Last Hope of Salvation–Part II)

 

THE URGENCY

The urgency in our day is this: the door of the Ark is still open, there is still time to enter within, but the opportunity may be entering its twilight. (The Lord will "illuminate" the ramp of the Ark in a powerful and unprecedented way, giving humanity a final opportunity to repent and seek His face… a "warning" or "illumination of conscience," according to some of the Church’s mystics and Saints. See Trumpets of Warning—Part V.)

Then the Lord shut [Noah] in. (Gen 7:16)

Once the door of Noah’s ark closed, it was too late. So too in our day, Mary has referred to this period in history as a "time of grace." Then the door will be "shut." The storm clouds, those clouds of deception which have already filled our skies, will accumulate and thicken so as to block the light of Truth entirely, if only for a brief time. Persecution of the Church will reach its peak, but those who entered the Ark will be under the protection of Heaven, beneath a Mantle of Wisdom that will strengthen them from "abandoning ship." They will have the grace to discern the lie and not be drawn out of the Ark by the spectacular flashes of lightning all around them, that false light which deceives souls who have refused Jesus, the Light of the World.

Therefore God sends upon them a strong delusion, to make them believe what is false, so that all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.  (2 Thess 2:7-12)

Those in the Ark will be few, existing in parallel communities, trusting entirely on the providence of God.

God patiently waited in the days of Noah during the building of the ark, in which a few persons, eight in all, were saved through water. (1 Pet 3:20)


In (those) days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day that Noah entered the ark. They did not know until the flood came and carried them all away. So will it be (also) at the coming of the Son of Man. (Matt 24;38-39)

 

THE FLOOD 

When those "seven days" of tribulation are over for the Church, then will begin the purification of the world.

For it is time for the judgment to begin with the household of God; if it begins with us, how will it end for those who fail to obey the gospel of God? (1 Pet 4:17)

Scripture speaks of a coming purification by the sword—"a minor judgment."  It will be swift and unexpected. According to Scripture, it precedes the Era of Peace, and ends with the destruction of Antichrist:  "the beast and the false prophet."

He judges and wages war in righteousness. Out of his mouth came a sharp sword to strike the nations… The beast was caught and with it the false prophet who had performed in its sight the signs by which he led astray those who had accepted the mark of the beast and those who had worshiped its image. The two were thrown alive into the fiery pool burning with sulfur. The rest were killed by the sword that came out of the mouth of the one riding the horse, and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh… Then I saw an angel come down from heaven… He seized the dragon, the ancient serpent, which is the Devil or Satan, and tied it up for a thousand years… (Rev 19:11, 15, 20-21, 20:1-2) 

For the LORD has an indictment against the nations, he is to pass judgment upon all mankind: The godless shall be given to the sword, says the LORD… A great storm is unleashed from the ends of the earth. (Jer 25:31-32)

So, we must understand the urgency of our time… and turn back to God with all our hearts. Prayer and penance can still change things.

However long it takes for His plan to unfold, now is the time to enter the Ark.

Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. (2 Cor 6:2)

Mary, in whom the Lord himself has just made his dwelling, is the daughter of Zion in person, the ark of the covenant, the place where the glory of the Lord dwells. She is "the dwelling of God . . . with men." Full of grace, Mary is wholly given over to him who has come to dwell in her and whom she is about to give to the world. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2676; cf.  Exodus 25:8


CALL TO THE ARK
(This poem was sent to me as I was writing this meditation…)

 

Come all my dearest children

for the time of trial is here,

into the ark of my protection

I will take away all fear.

Just as Noah long ago

saved those who would take heed,

and left behind the blind and deaf

full of worldly sin and greed.

The reign of sin and error

is increasing, soon to flood,

because of man’s rejection of my Son

and His redeeming blood.

The earth is placed in peril

all children on the brink,

minds and hearts befuddled

into Satan’s grasp they sink.

My ark will be a haven

I will protect and save,

those who come and take their refuge

I will help you to be brave.

My mother-love will fill you

I will light your path and guide,

through times of fear and darkness

I’ll be always at your side.

—Margaret Rose Larrivee, July 11, 1994

 

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Posted in HOME, MARY, TIME OF GRACE.