DEAR brothers and sisters,
Warm greetings in the love and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
For almost three years now, I have been writing on a regular basis the words which I feel the Lord has placed in my heart for you. The journey has been a remarkable one, and has affected me deeply.
I have received a number of requests throughout this time for these writings to be presented in a book form. The spiritual director of these writings has also urged me to do so. His advice is to take the heart of this broad work and present it in a more distilled form. In this way, you will have a more concise picture of what the Lord is trying to convey through so weak a vessel as I. And so, I have begun to write this book and compile the writings accordingly. If God wills it, it will be published.
It so happens that this has converged with the completion of the 10 part series, The Seven Year Trial. That series, in some regards, is a distillation in itself of the past two years, combining the Church Fathers, the teaching of the Catechism, and the Book of Revelation into one. I can tell you that the after-effects of the battle which ensued during their writing still remain. I am tired. But the Lord continues to send me "angels" to strengthen me when I feel I cannot go on any further. My mission is not yet finished; television may also be a part of my missionary work once the book is completed: a documentary summary of the writings… but one step at a time. We are drawing ever closer to the heart of this present Storm, and the Lord will not forsake us by remaining silent (Amos 3:7). To those who seek, they will find. To those who knock, the door will be opened. To those who listen, they will hear.
As in the past, if the Lord gives me a specific word or teaching to pass on to you, I will certainly do so. But most of my focus now will be upon the book—and the changes which He is bringing to my family…
A NEW SEASON
Our eighth baby is expected in October. Through a process of lengthy discernment, my wife and I feel it is time to sell our tour bus. As many of you know, it has been our mission for the past eight years to travel throughout North America and abroad with our children, preaching the Gospel through word and music. I have been privileged to proclaim Jesus to tens of thousands of souls! But the monthly payments, the cost of fuel, and the instability this adds to family life has led us to believe that this season is coming to a close. Of course, we depend almost entirely upon this mode of ministry for our sustenance. So, this is not an easy decision, and leaves us entirely dependent upon the providence of God as I go forward with the time-consuming duty of creating this book. But He will not fail us. He never has. I pray that I may never fail Him.
FURTHER THOUGHTS ON THE TIMES…
I can only express deep sorrow as I watch the growing rebellion in the world, and yet, this too is permitted by God’s will. There was a recent gay pride parade in San Francisco, USA. Men and women walked in full nudity through the streets as small children looked on. If any other citizen were to do this on any other given day or in any other parade, he or she would be arrested and punished. But not only do the authorities do nothing, they approve of it by participating in such parades, as was the case in recent American and Canadian events and other parts of the world. It is a sign of the depth of sickness which has gripped the world which now sees evil as good and good as evil. As I pondered once again how the Lord continues to permit this, the answer was swift:
Because when I act, it will be global and it will be absolute. It will end in the purification of the wicked from the face of the earth.
The Lord is being incredibly patient, waiting as long as possible before completely removing the restrainer to allow lawlessness to achieve its brief climax. When this present Storm is over, the world will be a different place. Some people have asked me to comment on the coming American elections. All I will say is that I believe these things are also helping to set the stage for what I have already written. I am sad, for most people do not recognize the times we are living in:
Know this first of all, that in the last days scoffers will come to scoff, living according to their own desires… (2 Pet 3:3)
In the past two months, there has been an explosion of brutal violence—manifestations of senseless evil bursting upon communities throughout the world. This too is a sign, perhaps more significant than hurricanes and floods.
There will be terrifying times in the last days. People will be self-centered and lovers of money, proud, haughty, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, irreligious, callous, implacable, slanderous, licentious, brutal, hating what is good, traitors, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God… (2 Tim 3:1-4)
Rather than a surmounting victory of evil, these are signs that our deadly culture is almost at an end. That times of peace lay beyond the shattered horizon of post-modernism. Hope is dawning….
There are signs of God’s Mercy at work: the powerful words and guidance of the Holy Father; the continuing apparitions and presence of Our Mother with us; the zeal and total dedication I have seen in souls whom I have encountered on my journeys. We are living in a "time of mercy," and should continue to expect great miracles of His mercy.
Many are undergoing strong temptations—seductions to fall asleep, to dissipation, to laziness. The temptations now are different I believe… distractions which seem harmless in themselves but nonetheless remain distractions. The Lord knows our weakness, and so we should renew our faith and commitment to Him each day without hesitation, no matter how hard we have fallen. He will not abandon us, even though we are tempted to abandon Him.
Remain firm, like the anvil under the hammer. The good athlete must take punishment in order to win. And above all we must bear with everything for God, so that he in turn may bear with us. Increase your zeal. Read the signs of the times. Look for him who is outside time, the eternal one, the unseen who became visible for us… —St. Ignatius of Antioch, Letter to Polycarp, The Liturgy of the Hours, Vol III, pg. 564-565
Let us call upon the intercession of the saints, men and women like Ignatius, Faustina, and Augustine who knew our weakness, and yet, trusted in His mercy to the very end.
Seek to please him whose soldiers you are and from whom you draw your pay; let none of you prove a deserter… A Christian is not his own master; his time is God’s. —St. Ignatius of Antioch, Letter to Polycarp, The Liturgy of the Hours, Vol III, pg. 568-569
We are in a battle—this is nothing new. What is new is the stage of battle we are now entering into.We must have our spiritual head about us; it is time for so
briety and vigilance, but in a spirit of freedom and peace.
Now the Lord has made the past and present known to us through his prophets, and he has given us the ability to taste the fruits of the future beforehand. Thus, when we see prophecies fulfilled in their appointed order, we ought to grow more fully and deeply in awe of him… When evil days are upon us and the worker of malice gains power, we must attend to our own souls and seek to know the ways of the Lord. In those times, reverential fear and perseverance will sustain our faith, and we will find need of forebearance and self-restraint as well. Provided that we hold fast to these virtues and look to the Lord, then wisdom, understanding, knowledge and insight will make joyous company with them. —A letter attributed to Barnabas, The Liturgy of the Hours, Vol IV, pg. 56
I cannot say enough how much the Eucharist and Confession will strengthen you; how the Rosary will teach you; how the Scriptures will guide you. Be consistent with these four pillars, and I believe you will have everything you need, so long as you bind these devotions with the cord of charity. In this way, the virtues Barnabas speaks of will be aptly watered and fertilized and able to grow, even quickly.
COMMUNION OF PRAYER
As I piece together the book, I may continue to republish some of the writings. Even now, as I sift through them, their pertinence and relevance is stronger than ever. They are spiritual food for me too.
Let us keep one another in the communion of prayer. You are always in my daily prayers and continue to have a very special place in my heart. You have been given to me by the Lord as a special little flock of His which I was commissioned to feed in this time. Please pray for me that I persevere to the end. Pray also for the necessary providence to care for my family and the resources and finances to pay for these new projects. To put it plainly, I need some benefactors to step forward to help us finance these initiatives. It is due to your generosity in the past that I am able to at least begin this book. Thank you so much, dear friends, for responding to our needs.
Remain firm. Follow Jesus without fear. We are just beginning.
His little courier,
World Youth Day has shown us that the Church can rejoice in the young people of today and be filled with hope for the world of tomorrow. —POPE BENEDICT XVI, World Youth Day closing remarks, Sydney, Australia, July 20, 2008; www.zenit.org
Pope John Paul II called North America "missionary territory once again."
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