“Dear children! Pray with me for a new life for all of you. In your hearts, little children, you know what needs to be changed. Return to God and His Commandments, so that the Holy Spirit may change your lives and the face of this earth, which is in need of renewal in the Spirit.
Little children be prayer for all those who do not pray; be joy for all those who do not see the way out; be carriers of light in the darkness of this peaceless time.
Pray and seek the help and protection of the saints so that you also could yearn for Heaven and Heavenly realities. I am with you and am protecting and blessing all of you with my motherly blessing. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (May 25, 2020)
“Pray with me for a new life for all of you…”
We keep talking about a “new normal.” If we are honest with ourselves, how many of us really want a new normal or is it a New Life we are yearning for?
He shall speak words against the Most High, and shall wear out the saints of the Most High, and shall think to change the times and the law; and they shall be given into his hand for a time, times, and half a time.Daniel 7:25
We need to use this time to pray for the reality we hope for and courage to overcome the complacency that threatens to send us backward into what was or worse, what could be, which is not aligned with God’s Kingdom.
“In your hearts, little children, you know what needs to be changed.”
Don’t we? Can’t you feel it when something is said that is contrary to the Divine Law. Doesn’t your heart ache for the promises of Jesus to be true. Doesn’t your spirit shutter when hypocrisy runs rampant.
A friend shared a story of a woman he knows who was ridden with anxiety over the gathering of her family for a time of celebration of which she herself could not attend. Under normal circumstances, she would’ve gone except the gathering occurred during quarantine and she was in the age at most risk. The gathering was for celebrating the new home of her niece who was moving in with her boyfriend. The couple is unmarried. When my friend raised the question of why she was more outraged by the fact the gathering occurred during quarantine against county orders and not the pre-marital cohabitating, she had a moment of conflict. How many of us have truly taken the time to reflect on our outrage over the virus? Are we upset over the things that upset God or are we still focused selfishly on our own needs and opinions. If you were outraged that abortion clinics remained open and churches didn’t, or that some disregarded the lives of the elderly for the sake of their own sanity and economic vibrancy, did you also consider respecting life includes avoiding contraceptive use and respecting population growth, family fertility, and sacramental marriages. How have you stood up to protect all life. When concerns of domestic violence, suicide risk and addiction increase as a side effect of quarantining became an issue, where did you take a stand or was the church too busy protesting the “right” to gather in order to worship (even though the Scriptures tell us we truly only need two or three for Jesus to be present) and swearing Jesus gave us “unalienable rights” to receive the Eucharist, even though a quick read of Scriptures clearly shows us he set up an Apostolic Church not a democracy. If our outrage is still “Me” focused and not “other” focused then righteousness is not well represented. We have to learn to be the Church at all times, in all circumstances. Which is why Our Lady’s message is more poignant than ever. Would that we all could see this momentary “pause” as such a defining moment.
Conflict brings confrontation precisely because we need to change something. In our hearts, we all know what needs to be changed. The Moral Law has been written in our hearts. We need Grace to see it and make it so. We could all use a little more compassion and mercy for each other too.
“Return to God and His Commandments”
Of all the Biblical Feasts commanded in the Scriptures (there are 5: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Pesach, Shavuot, and Sukkot) Shavuot is one of my favorites. Why? Because it’s the foreshadow of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. Just as Pesach was a foreshadow of the Passover Feast, Shavuot and the 49 days of Counting the Omer, which precede it, were a foretaste of the 50 days Christians now celebrate between Passover and Pentecost. The last 9 days of which are usually given over to Novena Prayer to the Holy Spirit. (Novena is Latin for “nine” as in nine days of prayer, as is Pentecost Latin for “fifty”, as in the 50th Day.)
You shall count for yourselves seven weeks, from when the sickle is first put to the standing crop shall you begin counting seven weeks. Then you will observe the Festival of Shavu’ot for the L-RD, your G-d.Deuteronomy 16:9-10
And, what exactly happened on that 50th day in the desert for Israel to make it so special? Shavuot is the day the Lord sent fire down on Mt. Sinai to deliver His Living Word “the Torah” to the Israelites. The Scriptures tell us the thunderous voice of God was so terrible and frightening that the Israelites begged Moses to tell the Lord to stop speaking and instead for Moses to be the mediator between them. “Speak to us yourself and we will listen. But do not have God speak to us or we will die” Exodus 20:19.
Shavu’ot draws a line of connection between Exodus 19 and Acts chapter 2. The festival superimposes the giving of the Spirit in Jerusalem over the giving of the Torah at Sinai. The two events are forever inseparably linked. This link creates a profound theological implication for believers.– Fire On the Mountain
To this day, the Jewish people celebrate this wondrous event when the Talmud says “tongues of fire fell over every Jew and the Torah was understood by them” with a recitation of the Ten Commandments in their synagogues and a night of fasting from sleep in order to “stay awake and study” the Torah. The fast is broke the next morning with much joy and the eating of sweet foods made from dairy.
The Apostle Paul alludes to this when he mentions, “I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able” 1 Corinthians 3:1-3.
Like the Fire on the Mountain of Sinai, the Holy Spirit falls on the Upper Room on the 50th Day after Christ’s Paschal Supper to illumine the hearts and minds of the disciples, which we celebrate as the Feast of Pentecost.
Our Lady’s message is therefore quite timely, with Pentecost arriving this weekend (May 30th). She is reminding us to return to the Fire of Sinai and the Fire of the Upper Room and let our hearts be renewed by that same Fire, “so that the Holy Spirit may change your lives and the face of this earth.”
Just as the Spirit continued to fall afresh on the new converts and disciples of Ephesus in the days following Pentecost (see Acts 19) and continues to fall today, we must receive that Fire now and allow the Spirit to lead us into understanding the Scriptures that we might be purified and be holy as the Lord is holy. We must return to God directly, no longer shun his voice, and keep his commandments (that includes having a stronger understanding of the Scriptures, the feasts, and the teachings of the Apostles handed down, like the Rabbis in the Talmud, through the Magisterium of Faith).
I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.Ezekiel 36:27
“be prayer…; be joy…; be carriers of light in the darkness of this peaceless time.”
Our Mother gently reminds us of our mission mandated by her Son. We must “go forth” and be a light to the world and disciple the nations. We do this best through our commitment to prayer and by the witness of joy in our lives. In short, we do this through loving others more than ourselves.
Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.Matthew 28:18-20
Prayer is not for changing others, it’s for changing you. Your Joy in that process is what changes everyone who is watching you.
“Pray and seek the help and protection of the saints”
Why does Our Lady remind us of the help and protection of the saints? Because they, unlike any other witness outside Christ and herself, have exampled to us the proven pathway of selfless Love. When we read and meditate on the life of the Apostles, martyrs and holy saints throughout time, we have a reference point for our own lives. More than the influence of modern-day evangelist who are among the living and only example the life of one living in the last 80 years, we have the stories of saints throughout the centuries spanning different ethnicities, cultural experiences and persecutions, which allow us to see the greater breadth and continuity of the Spirit at work in humanity. We have permission to sacrifice knowing the outcome is much like many others whom the Lord himself has marked and set aside as holy ones. Such continuity of Spirit gives us hope and courage to do it again in every age. We find protection in unity. We find help in family.
In the lives of great saints and holy men and women like Padre Pio, Teresa of Avila, Hildegard of Bingen, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Catherine and Bernardine of Siena, and Theresa of Lisieux (as well as, hundreds of others) we see the power of the Holy Spirit at work to purify and the manifestation of His Gifts to bring understanding and transformation, renewing the world around them, through them, with them and in them.
The Saints are a reminder to us that we ought not to become complacent with our time in this life but we ought to “yearn for Heaven and Heavenly realities.”
It is in this spirit of preparing our hearts for Heaven and Heavenly realities that we ought not to ignore the prophesies of Our Lady to the seers of our day. The website CountdowntotheKingdom.com has done an excellent job of compiling the prophecies and ongoing revelations relevant to our current times. If you have not checked out the site yet, I encourage you to do so.
If you are still on the fence about whether prophecies should be accommodated into your faith life at all, I encourage you to the read the article “Awakening to the Storm” on The Now Word as food for thought.
Today, the greatest scoffers of prophecy come, not from without, but within the Church. Any notion of even considering these times in the light of private revelation, much less “end times” Scripture, is met with disinterest, if not derision. Which is not at all the attitude of the early Church.Awakening to the Storm, May 21, 2020
Now is the time to Watch and Pray – and to be…by your example of faith in prayer, joy, and as carriers of light, a source of illumination to help others find their way home by the hand of Jesus. And we are not alone. Not only do we have a Great Cloud of Witnesses interceding for us with prayers and tears and blood upon the altar of Jesus but we have His Holy Mother to help guide us and comfort us along the narrow way, as she did for our Lord and Savior.
“I am with you and am protecting and blessing all of you with my motherly blessing.”
May the protection, love and guidance of the Holy Family be with you and your loved ones as we watch and pray. Until the Day Dawns,
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!