So Little Time Left

 

On the first Friday of this month, also the Feast day of St. Faustina, my wife’s mother, Margaret, passed away. We are preparing for the funeral now. Thanks to all for your prayers for Margaret and the family.

As we watch the explosion of evil all over the world, from the most shocking blasphemies against God in theaters, to the imminent collapse of economies, to the specter of nuclear war, the words of this writing below are rarely far from my heart. They were confirmed again today by my spiritual director. Another priest I know, a very prayerful and attentive soul, said just today that the Father is telling him, “Few know how very little time there really is.”

Our response? Do not delay your conversion. Do not delay going to Confession to begin again. Do not put off reconciling with God until tomorrow, for as St. Paul wrote, “Today is the day of salvation.

First published November 13th, 2010

 

LATE this past summer of 2010, the Lord began to speak a word in my heart that carries a new urgency. It is has been steadily burning in my heart until I woke up this morning weeping, unable to contain it any longer. I spoke with my spiritual director who confirmed what has been weighing on my heart.

As my readers and viewers know, I have striven to speak to you through the words of the Magisterium. But underlying everything I’ve written and spoken of here, in my book, and in my webcasts, are the personal directions that I hear in prayer—that many of you are also hearing in prayer. I will not deviate from the course, except to underscore what has already been said with ‘urgency’ by the Holy Fathers, by sharing with you the private words I have been given. For they are really not meant, at this point, to be kept hidden.

Here is the “message” as it has been given since August in passages from my diary…

 

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Jesus is in Your Boat


Christ in the Storm on the Sea of Galilee, Ludolf Backhuysen, 1695

 

IT felt like the last straw. Our vehicles have been breaking down costing a small fortune, the farm animals have been getting sick and mysteriously injured, the machinery has been failing, the garden isn’t growing, windstorms have ravaged the fruit trees, and our apostolate has run out of money. As I raced last week to catch my flight to California for a Marian conference, I cried out in distress to my wife standing in the driveway: Doesn’t the Lord see we are in a free-fall?

I felt abandoned, and let the Lord know it. Two hours later, I arrived at the airport, passed through the gates, and settled down into my seat in the aircraft. I looked out my window as the earth and the chaos of the last month fell away beneath the clouds. “Lord,” I whispered, “to whom shall I go? You have the words of eternal life…”

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New Original Catholic Art


Our Lady of Sorrows, ©Tianna Mallett

 

 There have been many requests for the original artwork produced here by my wife and daughter. You can now own them in our unique high quality magnet-prints. They come in 8″x10″ and, because they are magnetic, can be placed in the center of your home on the fridge, your school locker, a toolbox, or another metal surface.
Or, frame these beautiful prints and display them wherever you like in your home or office.Continue reading

Pentecost and the Illumination

 

 

IN early 2007, a powerful image came to me one day during prayer. I recount it again here (from The Smoldering Candle):

I saw the world gathered as though in a dark room. In the center is a burning candle. It is very short, the wax nearly all melted. The Flame represents the light of Christ: Truth.Continue reading

Charismatic! Part VII

 

THE point of this entire series on the charismatic gifts and movement is to encourage the reader to not be afraid of the extraordinary in God! To not be afraid to “open wide your hearts” to the gift of the Holy Spirit whom the Lord wishes to pour out in a special and powerful way in our times. As I read the letters sent to me, it is clear that the Charismatic Renewal has not been without its sorrows and failures, its human deficiencies and weaknesses. And yet, this is precisely what occurred in the early Church after Pentecost. Saints Peter and Paul devoted much space to correcting the various churches, moderating the charisms, and refocusing the budding communities over and over again upon the oral and written tradition that was being handed on to them. What the Apostles did not do is deny the often dramatic experiences of believers, try to stifle the charisms, or silence the zeal of thriving communities. Rather, they said:

Do not quench the Spirit… pursue love, but strive eagerly for the spiritual gifts, especially that you may prophesy… above all, let your love for one another be intense… (1 Thess 5:19; 1 Cor 14:1; 1 Pet 4:8)

I want to devote the last part of this series to sharing my own experiences and reflections since I first experienced the charismatic movement in 1975. Rather than give my entire testimony here, I will restrict it to those experiences one might call “charismatic.”

 

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Charismatic? Part VI

pentecost3_FotorPentecost, Artist Unknown

  

PENTECOST is not only a single event, but a grace that the Church can experience again and again. However, in this past century, the popes have been praying not only for a renewal in the Holy Spirit, but for a “new Pentecost”. When one considers all the signs of the times that have accompanied this prayer—key among them the continued presence of the Blessed Mother gathering with her children on earth through ongoing apparitions, as though she were once again in the “upper room” with the Apostles… the words of the Catechism take on a new sense of immediacy:

…at the “end time” the Lord’s Spirit will renew the hearts of men, engraving a new law in them. He will gather and reconcile the scattered and divided peoples; he will transform the first creation, and God will dwell there with men in peace.Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 715

This time when the Spirit comes to “renew the face of the earth” is the period, after the death of Antichrist, during what the Church Father’s pointed to in St. John’s Apocalypse as the “thousand year” era when Satan is chained in the abyss.Continue reading

Charismatic? Part V

 

 

AS we look at the Charismatic Renewal today, we see a great decline in its numbers, and those who remain are mostly grey and white-haired. What, then, was the Charismatic Renewal all about if it appears on the surface to be fizzling? As one reader wrote in response to this series:

At some point the Charismatic movement vanished like fireworks that light up the night sky and then fall back into the darkenss. I was somewhat puzzled that a move of Almighty God would wane and finally fade away.

The answer to this question is perhaps the most important aspect of this series, for it helps us to understand not only where we’ve come from, but what the future holds for the Church…

 

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Charismatic? Part IV

 

 

I have been asked before if I am a “Charismatic.” And my answer is, “I am Catholic!” That is, I want to be fully Catholic, to live in the center of the deposit of faith, the heart of our mother, the Church. And so, I strive to be “charismatic”, “marian,” “contemplative,” “active,” “sacramental,” and “apostolic.” That is because all of the above belong not to this or that group, or this or that movement, but to the entire body of Christ. While apostolates may vary in the focus of their particular charism, in order to be fully alive, fully “healthy,” one’s heart, one’s apostolate, should be open to the entire treasury of grace that the Father has bestowed upon the Church.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens… (Eph 1:3)

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The Verdict

 

AS my recent ministry tour progressed, I felt a new weight in my soul, a heaviness of heart unlike previous missions the Lord has sent me on. After preaching about His love and mercy, I asked the Father one night why the world… why anyone would not want to open their hearts to Jesus who has given so much, who has never hurt a soul, and who has burst open the gates of Heaven and gained every spiritual blessing for us through His death upon the Cross?

The answer came swiftly, a word from the Scriptures themselves:

And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. (John 3:19)

The growing sense, as I’ve meditated on this word, is that it is a definitive word for our times, indeed a verdict for a world now upon the threshold of extraordinary change….

 

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