3 Cities… and a Warning for Canada


Ottawa, Canada

 

First published April 14th, 2006. 
 

If the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet so that the people are not warned, and the sword comes, and takes any one of them; that man is taken away in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand. (Ezekiel 33:6)

 
I AM
not one to go looking for supernatural experiences. But what happened last week as I entered Ottawa, Canada seemed an unmistakable visitation of the Lord. A confirmation of a powerful word and warning.

As my concert tour took my family and I through the United States this Lent, I had a sense of expectation from the beginning… that God was going to show us “something.”

 

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Stars of Holiness

 

 

WORDS which have been circling my heart…

As the darkness gets darker, the Stars get brighter. 

 

OPEN DOORS 

I believe Jesus is empowering those who are humble and open to His Holy Spirit to grow rapidly in holiness. Yes, the doors of Heaven are open. Pope John Paul II’s Jubilee celebration of 2000, in which he pushed open the doors of St. Peter’s Basilica, is symbolic of this. Heaven has literally opened its doors to us.

But the reception of these graces is dependent upon this:  that we open the doors of our hearts.  Those were the first words of JPII when he was elected… 

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Now is the Hour


Sun setting on "Apparition Hill" –— Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina


IT
was my fourth, and last day in Medjugorje—that little village in the war-torn mountains of Bosnia-Herzegovina where the Blessed Mother has allegedly been appearing to six children (now, grown adults).

I had heard of this place for years, yet never felt the need to go there. But when I was asked to sing in Rome, something within me said, "Now, now you must go to Medjugorje."

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That Medjugorje


St. James Parish, Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina

 

SHORTLY before my flight from Rome to Bosnia, I caught a news story quoting Archbishop Harry Flynn of Minnesota, USA on his recent trip to Medjugorje. The Archbishop was speaking of a luncheon he had with Pope John Paul II and other American bishops in 1988:

Soup was being served.  Bishop Stanley Ott of Baton Rouge, LA., who has since gone to God, asked the Holy Father: “Holy Father, what do you think of Medjugorje?”

The Holy Father kept eating his soup and responded: “Medjugorje? Medjugorje? Medjugorje? Only good things are happening at Medjugorje.  People are praying there.  People are going to Confession. People are adoring the Eucharist, and people are turning to God.  And, only good things seem to be happening at Medjugorje.” www.spiritdaily.com, October 24th, 2006

Indeed, that’s what I’d heard coming from that Medjugorje… miracles, especially miracles of the heart. I’d had a number of family members experience profound conversions and healings after visiting this place.

 

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Evaporation: A Sign of the Times

 

 MEMORIAL OF THE GUARDIAN ANGELS

 

80 countries now have water shortages that threaten health and economies while 40 percent of the world — more than 2 billion people — have no access to clean water or sanitation. —The World Bank; Arizona Water Source, Nov-Dec 1999

 
WHY is our water evaporating? Part of the reason is consumption, the other part is dramatic changes in climate. Whatever the reasons are, I believe it is a sign of the times…
 

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This Generation?


 

 

BILLIONS of people have come and gone in the past two millennium. Those who were Christians awaited and hoped to see the Second Coming of Christ… but instead, passed through the doorway of death to see Him face to face.

It is estimated that some 155 000 people die each day, and slightly more than that are born. The world is a revolving door of souls.

Have you ever wondered why Christ’s promise of His return has been delayed? Why billions have come and gone in the period since His Incarnation, this 2000-year-long “final hour” of waiting? And what makes this generation any more likely to see His coming before it passes away?

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On the Mark

 
POPE BENEDICT XVI 

 

“If I get hold of the pope, I will hang him,” Hafiz Hussain Ahmed, a senior MMA leader, told protesters in Islamabad, who carried placards reading “Terrorist, extremist Pope be hanged!” and “Down with Muslims’ enemies!”  AP News, Sept 22, 2006

“The violent reactions in many parts of the Islamic world justified one of Pope Benedict’s main fears . . . They show the link for many Islamists between religion and violence, their refusal to respond to criticism with rational arguments, but only with demonstrations, threats, and actual violence.” Cardinal George Pell, Archbishop of Sydney; www.timesonline.co.uk, September 19, 2006


TODAY’S
Sunday Mass readings remarkably call to mind Pope Benedict XVI and the events of this past week:

 

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How Terrible Is the Gospel?

 

 

This word was impressed upon me yesterday afternoon, a word bursting with passion and grief: 

Why are you rejecting Me my people? What is so terrible about the Gospel—the Good News—which I bring you?

I came into the world to forgive your sins, that you may hear the words, "Your sins are forgiven." How terrible is this?

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Why So Long?

St. James Parish, Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina

 
AS
the controversy surrounding the alleged apparitions of the Blesssed Virgin Mary at Medjugorje began to heat up again earlier this year, I asked the Lord, "If the apparitions are really authentic, why is it taking so long for prophesied "things" to happen?"

The answer was as swift as the question:

Because you’re taking so long.  

There are many arguments surrounding the phenomenon of Medjugorje (which is currently under Church investigation). But there’s no arguing the answer I received that day.