This writing was first published March 24th, 2009.
“the smoke of Satan is seeping into the Church of God through the cracks in the walls.” —POPE PAUL VI, first quote: Homily during the Mass for Sts. Peter & Paul, June 29, 1972
THERE is an elephant in the living room. But few want to talk about it. Most choose to ignore it. The problem is that the elephant is trampling all of the furniture and soiling the carpet. And the elephant is this: the Church is polluted with apostasy—the falling away from the faith—and it has a name: “Wormwood”.
Shortly before Christmas 2008, I received a strange word:
It is a word mentioned in the Bible. From Webster’s Online Dictionary:
In the symbolical language of the Apocalypse (Rev. 8:10, 11) a star is represented as falling on the waters of the earth, causing the third part of the water to turn wormwood. The name by which the Greeks designated it, absinthion, means “undrinkable.”
Indeed, the Church is meant to be the source of living water, nurturing and nursing her children on the Truth, who is Christ. But these waters in many places have been poisoned by heresy—mass heresy. Many are those who claim to be Catholic ministers, but like wolves in sheep’s clothing, lead their flocks to errant pastures, groomed and tended by dissident theologians—the false prophets of our day. It goes to show that a theological degree is no guarantee of orthodoxy. Indeed, the ecclesiastical orders in North America have been routing the faith to such a degree that several theological seminaries and universities as well as hospitals and schools are now Catholic in name only. They are often the very source of the moral pollution in our culture.
Almost as damaging are those who simply remain silent out of fear:
Pastors who lack foresight hesitate to say openly what is right because they fear losing the favor of men. As the voice of truth tells us, such leaders are not zealous pastors who protect their flocks, rather they are like mercenaries who flee by taking refuge in silence when the wolf appears… When a pastor has been afraid to assert what is right, has he not turned his back and fled by remaining silent? —St. Gregory the Great, Liturgy of the Hours, Vol IV, p. 342-343
If we want to know where our culture of death—of abortion, euthanasia, and contraception—came from, look no further than the episcopate’s doors. Forty years ago, when the world’s predators stood ready to devour the faithful, many sheep (such as my parents) were told that “the pill” was acceptable and that they could follow their conscience. Alas, the wolves were already inside the sheep pen, already inside the Church! I was born in 1968—just five months before the release of Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI’s encyclical letter reaffirming the Church’s teaching against contraception. It would be eight years later before my parents were taught the truth about birth control by two lay people (which resulted in the birth of my dear little brother.) How close I came to not existing due to false teaching! (Two years later, the minister who advised my parents, left the priesthood and got married.)
The flood of abortion, pornography, STD’s, and divorce entered Catholic homes and society at large when the moral dam of the clergy collapsed (see Removing the Restrainer). There is an elephant in the living room, and its name is Wormwood.
THE BITTER PLANT
“Wormwood” is also known as a bitter plant.
The tradition is that this plant sprang up in the track of the serpent as it writhed along the ground when driven out of Paradise. —Webster’s Online Dictionary
Yes, in the wake of the ancient serpent’s tail:
The tail of the devil is functioning in the disintegration of the Catholic world. The darkness of Satan has entered and spread throughout the Catholic Church even to its summit. Apostasy, the loss of the faith, is spreading throughout the world and into the highest levels within the Church. —POPE PAUL VI, Address on the Sixtieth Anniversary of the Fatima Apparitions, October 13, 1977
Contraception is the primary bitter agent of the “fallen star”—that is, the fallen clergy and theologians who have rejected the Church’s moral teachings. The Barque of Peter, the Church, is like…
…a boat about to sink, a boat taking in water on every side. —Cardinal Ratzinger (POPE BENEDICT XVI), March 24, 2005, Good Friday meditation on the Third Fall of Christ
I have met several priests from various regions of the United States who estimate that over 50 percent of their fellow seminarians are “gay”—many living active homosexual lifestyles. One priest recounted how he was forced to lock his door at night. Another told me how two men burst into his room to “have their way”—but turned white as ghosts as they looked upon his statue of Our Lady of Fatima. They left, and never bothered him again. Another was brought before his seminary’s disciplinary panel when he complained about being “hit on” by fellow seminarians. But they asked him why he was ”
homophobic.” Other priests have told me that their faithfulness to the Magisterium was the reason they almost didn’t graduate, and that some of their colleagues did not survive because of their obedience to the Holy Father. How can this be?!
Her most crafty enemies have engulfed the Church, the Spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, with sorrows, they have drenched her with wormwood; on all Her desirable things they have laid their wicked hands. Where the See of Blessed Peter and the Chair of Truth have been set up for the light of the gentiles, there they have placed the throne of the abomination of their wickedness, so that the Pastor having been struck, they may also be able to scatter the flock. —POPE LEO XIII, Exorcism Prayer, 1888 A.D.; from the Roman Raccolta of July 23, 1889
There is an elephant in the living room, and its name is Wormwood… and Schism is her twin sister.
I had another vision of the great tribulation… It seems to me that a concession was demanded from the clergy that could not be granted. I saw many older priests, especially one, who wept bitterly. A few younger ones were also weeping… It was as if people were splitting into two camps. —Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich (1774–1824); The Life and Revelations of Anne Catherine Emmerich; message from April 12th, 1820.
REAPING WHAT HAS BEEN SOWN
It is this acceptance of contraception that has led to and continues to foster a literal “Wormwood” in our waters. Studies are beginning to reveal that hormones from contraception are making their way back into the water supply. The results are frightening. In some cases, such as in Canada’s Great lakes or Colorado’s Boulder Creek, male fish have begun to change sex and their populations have been greatly reduced. It has been traced to estrogen—the female hormone found in oral contraceptives or birth control patches.
It’s the first thing that I’ve seen as a scientist that really scared me. It’s one thing to kill a river. It’s another thing to kill nature. If you’re messing with the hormonal balance in your aquatic community, you’re going deep down. You’re twiddling with how life proceeds. —Biologist John Woodling, Catholic Online , August 29, 2007
Furthermore, as evangelical writer Julio Severo points out, contraception also results in “micro-abortions”:
...rivers have become deposits of annihilated lives. Hundreds of millions of women use pills and other birth-control devices that provoke micro-abortions that end flushed in toilets, and then into rivers. —Julio Severo, article “Rivers of Blood”, December 17, 2008, LifeSiteNews.com
The water we cook with, we bathe in, we drink, is tainted with the blood of these murdered individuals. There is an elephant in the living room, and its name is Wormwood.
Who can fail to see that society is at the present time, more than in any past age, suffering from a terrible and deep-rooted malady which, developing every day and eating into its inmost being, is dragging it to destruction? —POPE PIUS X, Encyclical E Supremi, n. 2
THE TIMES OF SORROW
You shall not pollute the land in which you live, for blood pollutes the land, and no atonement can be made for the land for the blood that is shed in it, except by the blood of the one who shed it. (Numbers 35:33 ESV)
It is difficult for me to write these things. I’d much rather kick my feet up, read a novel, and pretend that everything in the world is going to go along as it always has. The problem is, there’s an elephant in the living room. I can’t in good conscience pretend that it doesn’t exist. The dung has piled up high, the smell of disobedience is everywhere, and the damage to our children’s future is irreparable, save for a direct intervention from on High.
The warning in my heart is clear of a coming instrument of purification (see The Hour of the Sword).
War is coming to the shores of the Americas.
It is clear, absolutely clear, that the Western world has no intention of repenting of the crime of abortion, despite the scientific, biological, moral, and visual evidence of the humanity, personhood, and dignity of the unborn. It is the most cruel, selfish, and barbaric of practices of perhaps any civilization in the oft tragic history of humanity (see Is the Fetus a Person and The Hard Truth – Part V).
Be careful, especially when all seems to be peaceful and calm. Russia may act in a surprise way, when you least expect it… [God’s] justice will begin in Venezuela. —Servant of God Maria Esperanza, The Bridge to Heaven: Interviews with Maria Esperanza of Betania, Michael H. Brown, p. 73, 171
Because God loves us, our consciences need to be violently shaken. Before there can be an Illumination of Conscience, before we are willing to look up, we have to be brought to our knees, just as the Prodigal Son would not think to return home until his pride was crushed.
And let us not say that it is God who is punishing us in this way; on the contrary it is people themselves who are preparing their own punishment. In his kindness God warns us and calls us to the right path, while respecting the freedom he has given us; hence people are responsible. —Sr. Lucia, one of the Fatima visionaries, in a letter to the Holy Father, May 12th, 1982.
The bitterness of Wormwood has reached the Lord’s mouth:
Because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. (Rev 3:16)
If the Lord spits a portion of His Church out of His mouth—that is, removes His divine protection—it is not because He does not love us. It is precisely because He loves us:
If you are without discipline, in which all have shared, you are not sons but bastards… whom the Lord loves, he disciplines; he scourges every son he acknowledges. (Heb 12:6,8)
Is Ephraim not my favored son, the child in whom I delight? Often as I threaten him, I still remember him with favor; My heart stirs for him, I must show him mercy, says the LORD. (Jeremiah 31:18-20)
…for the elephant in the living room needs to be exposed. Wormwood needs to be uprooted. Poison needs to be drawn out so that Living Waters can flow again.
What I want to say is: Enough is enough! How much more can all of us take? Like you, my heart is broken, my mind is confused, my body hurts and I have moved in and out of a variety of feelings especially shame and frustration, fear and disappointment, along with a sense of vulnerability, and a tremendous poverty of spirit. I have cried and I have silently screamed,and perhaps that was my prayer to God: Why Lord? What does all this mean? What are you asking of me and of my priests? What do you want to see happen among your people? Is this a time of purification or is it nothing more than devastation? Are people going to stop believing, will faithful people stop being people of faith? Lord, what are you asking of us and how can we make it happen? —Archbishop Anthony Mancini, Halifax, NS, in response to a fellow bishop’s arrest on possession of child pornography; Letter to the Roman Catholic Faithful of Nova Scotia, Oct 2nd, 2009
Thanks for your love, prayers, and support!