“The history of the world from the beginning is but the history of the struggle between the powers of the world, and of hell, against the souls which are humbly devoted to the divine action. In this struggle all the advantage seems to be on the side of pride, yet the victory always remains with humility. The image of the world is always presented to our eyes as a statue of gold, brass, iron, and clay. This mystery of iniquity, shown in a dream to Nabuchodonosor, is nothing but a confused medley of all the actions, interior and exterior, of the children of darkness. This is also typified by the beast coming out of the pit to make war, from the beginning of time, against the interior and spiritual life of man. All that takes place in our days is the consequence of this war. Monster follows monster out of the pit, which swallows, and vomits them forth again amidst incessant clouds of smoke. The combat between St. Michael and Lucifer, that began in Heaven, still continues. The heart of this once magnificent angel, has become, through envy, an inexhaustible abyss of every kind of evil. He made angel revolt against angel in Heaven, and from the creation of the world his whole energy is exerted to make more criminals among men to fill the ranks of those who have been swallowed up in the pit. Lucifer is the chief of those who refuse obedience to the Almighty. This mystery of iniquity is the very inversion of the order of God; it is the order, or rather, the disorder of the devil. This disorder is a mystery because, under a false appearance of good, it hides irremediable and infinite evil. Every wicked man, who, from the time of Cain, up to the present moment, has declared war against God, has outwardly been great and powerful, making a great stir in the world, and being worshiped by all. But this outward semblance is a mystery. In reality they are beasts which have ascended from the pit one after another to overthrow the order of God. But this order, which is another mystery, has always opposed to them really great and powerful men who have dealt these monsters a mortal wound. As fast as hell vomits them forth, Heaven at the same time creates fresh heroes to combat them. Ancient history, sacred and profane, is but a record of this war. The order of God has ever remained victorious and those who have ranged themselves on the side of God have shared His triumph, and are happy for all eternity. Injustice has never been able to protect deserters. It can reward them only by death, an eternal death. Those who practise iniquity imagine themselves invincible. O God! who can resist You? If a single soul has the whole world and all hell against it, it need have no fear if, by abandonment, it takes its stand on the side of God and His order. The monstrous spectacle of wickedness armed with so much power, the head of gold, the body of silver, brass, and iron, is nothing more than the image of clay; a small stone cast at it will scatter it to the four winds of Heaven. How wonderfully has the Holy Spirit illustrated the centuries of the world! So many startling revelations! so many renowned heroes following each other like so many brilliant stars! So many wonderful events!”—Fr. De Caussade SJ, Abandonment to Divine Providence, p. 66-68
On 13 October 1884, Pope Leo XIII entered a trance after finishing Mass in the Vatican and he saw Jesus and Satan talking:
Satan: “I can destroy Your Church.”
Our Lord: “You can? Then go ahead and do so.”
Satan: “To do so, I need more time and more power.”
Our Lord: “How much time? How much power?”
Satan: “75 to 100 years, and a greater power over those who will give themselves over to my service.”
Our Lord: “You have the time, you will have the power. Do with them what you will.”
Pope Leo XIII then went to compose his prayer to St. Michael to be prayed after Masses everywhere.
Fast forward 33 years to 1917 when the Mother of God would have monthly apparitions to simple shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal. To these children, Mary revealed warnings about World War II and the future of the Catholic Church. Besides these prophesies coming true, the children were also vindicated when 70,000 onlookers (including atheists) saw the sun zig-zagging and diving to the earth:
Even secular press admitted this “sun miracle” took place. It was probably the most spectacular miracle in the history of the world, at least since the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.
What is the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary?
Several months before that miracle, Mary spoke to those same children of the Triumph of her Immaculate Heart in regards to Russia and the entire future of the world and the Catholic Church. She said:
“If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.” 1
I have only recently been convinced how much Communism has already influenced the United States in our American social policies (sex-education) to our social habits (women in the work place) to the intolerance of Christianity in the academy (all the while Russia slowly crawls back to her own Christian roots.) But what does it mean that “In the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph“? This is only my theory but I believe there are only two possibilities for this triumph period of peace, and they are indeed mutually exclusive:
1) The end of the world.
2) The transition from this turbulent fifth age of the Church into the sixth and peaceful age of the Church.
The second admittedly sounds strange, and we will get to that later. But let’s start with evidence for the first via a Vatican-approved apparition of Mary. The Mother of God appeared to some children in Africa throughout the 1980s, warning them about heaven and hell, as well as a coming genocide to Rwanda (which ended up coming true in 1994.) One of the visionaries of Our Lady of Kibeho said this about Our Lady’s warnings:
“Because she loves us so much, she wants us to have more faith in God. During Advent we should reflect upon the return of Jesus. She told me that her Son will return to Earth soon, and that our souls must be prepared for His arrival. The world is in a very bad way…”—Visionary at Kibeho, Rwanda
This sounds like Christ is returning soon! Furthermore, it seems that many of the criteria for Christ’s second coming found in Matthew 24 have been fulfilled. 2
However, there is more evidence for the second theory, namely that the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary is not going to be the end of the world, but rather a new era of peace coming upon the Church and the whole world. This is already found in the writings of Ven. Bartholomew Holzhauser, a 17th century founder of a religious community who conglomerated the teaching of many saints and prophets. Much evidence points to the fact that we (now in the 21st century) are at the end of that tumultuous fifth age of the Church coming quickly into the sixth age of an “era of peace.” Notice how similar this is to what Mary said at Fatima regarding a “period of peace.” In fact, many canonized saints and ancient prophets conglomerated in this book prophesy that the sixth age of Church history will include two figures known as “The Holy Pope” and “The Great Catholic Monarch.” (I preached on these two expected men in the second half of a podcast here.) 3
Even before the death of the last Apostle, already the Catholic Church was facing several antichrists (See 1 John 2:18.) However, the final antichrist will not come until the seventh age of the Church, concurrent with several global happenings I podcasted about here, all proved from the Bible and the Catechism, not private revelation. Again, notice that we are only in the fifth age of the Church, and these events will be found in the seventh age of the Church, so the final antichrist is probably not in power yet anywhere in the world.
Still, our current age of Church history also has plenty of trouble, and Our Lady of Akita gave astonishingly clear warnings of the future to Sr. Agnes Katsuko Sasagawa in as late as 1973:
“The work of the devil will infiltrate even into the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against bishops. The priests who venerate me will be scorned and opposed by their confreres…The Church will be full of those who accept compromises….”—Our Lady of Akita, 13 October 1973
Notice that date of 13 October: 13 October is the date of Pope Leo XIII’s vision of Jesus and Satan. 13 October is the date of the final apparition of Our Lady of Fatima. 13 October is the date of one of the main apparitions of Our Lady of Akita! Our Lady of Akita also spoke of a coming chastisement if we do not repent:
“As I told you, if men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be a punishment greater than the deluge, such as one will never seen before. Fire will fall from the sky and will wipe out a great part of humanity, the good as well as the bad, sparing neither priests nor faithful. The survivors will find themselves so desolate that they will envy the dead. The only arms which will remain for you will be the Rosary and the Sign left by My Son. Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary. With the Rosary, pray for the Pope, the bishops and priests.”—Our Lady of Akita. 4
Besides the days of Acts of the Apostles, I would argue that these are the most exciting times of Church history in which to live as a Catholic! We will either get to see Christ’s second return, or, more likely, the ushering in of a great Catholic era of [relative] world peace and a restoration of all things Catholic, albeit through a great chastisement. Yes, Our Lady of Good Success promised this “complete restoration” of the Catholic Church sometime after the 20th century. So, I believe this is the transition from the fifth age of the Church to the peaceful sixth age of the Church via a global chastisement. Perhaps the most important line of Fatima is:
“The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.”
We know this will happen, so our goal as simple Catholics remains the same to expedite this: To stay in sanctifying grace. This is nearly guaranteed in a relationship with Jesus Christ, a deep prayer life, frequent confession and the daily Rosary. Yes, Our Lady of Akita warned us for tough times, even a fiery chastisement, but we were made for a time like this! God did not make a mistake in which time period He placed you. We have already been given the boldness, courage and fortitude to remain with Jesus and Mary so that Russia may be converted and so that your children (or at least your grandchildren) will see that “period of peace granted to the world.” I write of these private revelations not to scare you but to show that whereas the earth seems to be in a free-fall, the Blessed Trinity is actually in total control of modern world history and modern Church history. We can neither stop the punishment for sins nor stop the coming Triumph of the Immaculate Heart, but I believe we can expedite both by our prayers and penance in sacrificial love. Yes, it all now depends on you and your Rosary beads…more than any players in modern world history.
This quote comes from Louis Kondor, S.V.D. (Ed.) Fatima in Lucia’s Own Words (Fatima: Postulation Centre, 1976), p. 162. Although this blog post is not about whether Russia was adequately consecrated or not, it is interesting to note what Fr. Gabriele Amorth said about this. Before his death last year, he was the chief exorcist of Rome (and before that) a trusted man of Pope John Paul II. Fr. Amorth said the following about Russia here. ↩
I already know that many people want to say “But we don’t know the day nor the hour!” Yes, I know Christ says that. But just because we don’t know the “day nor the hour” of Christ’s return does not mean that we won’t know the year! Not that I claim to have any idea when that year actually is, but Jesus never would have given us so many clues in Matthew 24 if we were supposed to be totally in the dark on eschatological events. Remember also that Christ’s indication in the Gospels of the coming the destruction of the Temple (70 AD) was enough to get all the early Jewish-Christian converts out of Jerusalem to the hills before its destruction. The temple is a microcosm of the cosmos, and the cosmos will also burn one day, so it would make sense why Christ would give us the clues of Matthew 24 regarding his return. Even CNN admits we have had more earthquakes than ever before in history. Notice how many of these are taking place.: As He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your ycoming and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains. “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.↩
Venerable Bartholomew Holzhauser (17th Century)
The fifth period of the Church, which began circa 1520, will end with the arrival of the holy Pope and of the powerful Monarch who is called “Help From God” because he will restore everything. The fifth period is one of affliction, desolation, humiliation, and poverty for the Church. Jesus Christ will purify His people through cruel wars, famines, plagues, epidemics, and other horrible calamities. He will also afflict and weaken the Latin Church with many heresies. It is a period of defections, calamities and exterminations. Those Christians who survive the sword, plague and famines, will be few on earth. During this period, many men will abuse of the freedom of conscience conceded to them. It is of such men that Jude the Apostle spoke when he said, “These men blaspheme whatever they do not understand; and they corrupt whatever they know naturally as irrational animals do.” They will ridicule Christian simplicity; they will call it folly and nonsense, but they will have the highest regard for advanced knowledge, and for the skill by which the axioms of law, the precepts of morality, the Holy Canons and religious dogmas are clouded by senseless questions and elaborate arguments. These are the evil times, a century full of dangers and calamities. Heresy is everywhere, and the followers of heresy are in power almost everywhere. but God will permit a great evil against His Church: Heretics and tyrants will come suddenly and unexpectedly; they will break into the Church. They will enter Italy and lay Rome waste; they will burn down churches and destroy everything. ↩
These are not crackpot apparitions or backwater trad tales. After eight years of investigations, Bishop John Shojiro Ito, Bishop of Niigata, Japan, recognized “the supernatural character of a series of mysterious events concerning the statue of the Holy Mother Mary” and authorized “throughout the entire diocese, the veneration of the Holy Mother of Akita, while awaiting that the Holy See publishes definitive judgment on this matter.”—EWTN. EWTN also remarks on the veracity of the apparitions of Our Lady of Akita: “Despite claims that Cardinal Ratzinger gave definitive approval to Akita in 1988, no ecclesiastical decree appears to exist, as certainly would in such a case. However, some individuals, such as former Ambassador of the Phillipines to the Holy See, Mr. Howard Dee, have stated that they were given private assurances by Cardinal Ratzinger of the authenticity of Akita. In any case, in keeping with the current norms, given the absence of a repudiation of Bp. Ito’s decision by his successors, or by higher authority, the events of Akita continue to have ecclesiastical approval.”
Another key line of Our Lady of Akita regarding this chastisement is this:
“In order that the world might know His anger, the Heavenly Father is preparing to inflict a great chastisement on all mankind. With my Son I have intervened so many times to appease the wrath of the Father. I have prevented the coming of calamities by offering Him the sufferings of the Son on the Cross, His Precious Blood, and beloved souls who console Him forming a cohort of victim souls. Prayer, penance and courageous sacrifices can soften the Father’s anger. I desire this also from your community…that it love poverty, that it sanctify itself and pray in reparation for the ingratitude and outrages of so many men.”—Our Lady of Akita. ↩
What is Transferred in the Generational Line
One of the most amazing things about the God of the New and Old Testament is how He deals with families. Although women are frequently holier than their husbands, God has chosen—already found in the first book of the Bible—the generational blessing to be transferred from the husband through the boys of his family and so on.
Esau said to his father, “Have you but one blessing, my father? Bless me, even me also, O my father.” And Esau lifted up his voice and wept.—Genesis 27:38
We long for our father’s blessing, but we often only receive his negligence or bad habits. Nowadays, there is a lot of talk these days about generational curses, and these do indeed exist, but we have to be careful about falling overboard into generational fatalism. At one point in the history of Israel, God gets so fed up with the Hebrew “daddy-wound” excuse that He prohibits this parable from being spoke all over Israel: The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.
What this means is that God prohibited the excuse, “I sinned because my Dad sinned.” It’s like: My Dad ate bad grapes, so I can’t get my act together. In modern terms, it would be “I’m an alcoholic because my Dad is an alcoholic.” or “I’m addicted to porn because my Dad abused me.” Although there is a high correlation for both of these evils that I do not mean to mock, we must also remember that God prohibits excuses, for God has given to every man a free-will to begin a new family with fresh responsibility:
The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge’? As I live, declares the Lord God, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel. Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: the soul who sins shall die.—Ezekiel 18:1-4. 1
The reason we can not use a pious “daddy wound” excuse for our sins is because the grace we receive from God in the sacraments is infinitely more powerful than our physical, fallen bloodline. The grace and peace coming through the Precious Blood of Jesus is more powerful than the sins of the bloodline of the Maranzano family or the Mangano family or your family or my family. This is why God prohibits the ancient “daddy wound” excuse of the fathers eating sour grapes as it somehow transfers to the kids. 2
Although only original sin (not actual sins) transfers down a bloodline, the propensity for sins can indeed transfer down a bloodline, especially when mortal sins are committed under the roof of your children (and yes, pornography and drunkenness are both mortal sins.) This is where I am going to admonish the men reading this blog post to double-down in their vigilance against curses (that come primarily from their own sins) and blessings (literal blessings upon their children) to leave a legacy in their families today. I am going to give five battle-goals in this post.
Why should our vigilance be doubled?
Good Catholic parents keep telling me about their good children who are more frequently showing a propensity for same-sex attraction, transgender feelings, children making strange noises (yes, I know most kids make odd noises, but I mean preternaturally strange noises) as well as a highly-unusual propensity for finding pornography. Even relatively sheltered kids are doing sexual dances without ever having been taught. How is this possible?
It is either through learned behavior via the five-senses or through some type of cultural osmosis or even by demons that come into the home. I had written in an earlier blog post against pornography that a man must not use pornography unless he wants demons to invade his home. I realize this is a rather show-stopping claim, but every exorcist I know will back me up on this claim. Thus, I stick by this original claim.
But now, I am realizing something more scary: Even men who are successfully avoiding pornography and other mortal sins are finding their very young children get into sexual dancing and perverted experiments with themselves or other strange things. Some of this is the common effect of original sin that is only avoided in the childhood accounts of canonized saints. But nowadays, some of these unusual perversions are because the fathers of families are not providing the full gamut of protection prayers and blessings that their children need against the most perverse and pro-death culture in the history of the world. Indeed, refraining from pornography is only the beginning of keeping many demons out of the home. But from what many good Catholic families are now reporting to me, I see: It is not enough.
I want to give my top five suggestions for how men can begin to provide spiritual protection for their families.
Five-Point Battle Plan:
1. Pray at least Five Decades of Daily Rosary with your family. You can no longer afford to say “We try for one decade at night but we have little kids who are too unruly.” Fine. Put the little ones to bed and say the five decades with the kids who can stay awake. Or, if none can stay awake, go to your bed and get on your knees with your wife at your side, and pray five decades of the Rosary with her. Or, perhaps you are waiting for her to lead the family? Men, you must take the initiative of spiritual warfare here, or you will lose. No exagerration here with what I’m coming against even in good Catholic families. You can’t afford to call me an extremist anymore with the preternatural proof I have of what is going on in even sheltered Catholic families. With the current spiritual and cultural war, you can not afford to spiritually lead your family without the minimum of 5 decades of the Rosary a day.
2. Auxilium Christianorum: The exorcist Fr. Ripperger has put together an international team of tens of thousands of lay men and women and priests. They are now praying basic prayers of spiritual protection over their families and over each other from afar. (One laywoman told me that there are now hundreds of thousands of people signed up!) The goal of Auxilium Christianorum is to provide prayers for the members – priests, laity, family and friends – so that they are not adversely affected by the demonic. Because men have the greatest gift of spiritual authority and protection in their families, I suggest as many men as possible enroll in this venture, provided they meet these few requirements. These are the willing ones, the spiritually vigilant warriors who want to fight to get their families to heaven. Auxilium Christianorum has an excellent FAQ here that you should read before signing up.
3. Praise God for His goodness together as a family! This is first because praise is God’s due and secondly because it is our salvation to praise God and thirdly because it unites our families to thank God but as a distant fourth: Praise is exorcismal against Satan. Satan and his legion of demons can not stand a family that praises God. Satan got especially angry at St. Faustina for writing about His goodness: “Do not write about the goodness of God! He is just!”—Satan to St. Faustina, Divine Mercy Diary 1338.
4. Praise your wife and children. By “praise” I do not mean “praise” in the same way as number three above, for the above refers to “latria” in the sense of adoration due only to God. By praise of your family, I mean encouragement and compliments. At least, let your encouragements be as frequent as your corrections.
5. Bless your wife and your children. This is the blessing that is transferred inter-generationally for as many generations as will exist from your progeny until the second coming of Jesus Christ. Imagine this blessing passing through your son, to his son, to your grandson, to the point of leaving a dynastic legacy. Satan can not do this, because his only legacy is de-creation. A humble man becomes God-like by simply blessing his children before they go to bed. This blessing is not to make them feel good (although it will make them feel more protected than living in a fortress!) or encouraged (although it will make them feel like the son or daughter of a warrior!) but because the multi-generational blessing that a father can give his son is real. A blessing is efficacious, meaning it will change world history, as we see in Aaron’s blessing in the Old Testament:
The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, Thus you shall bless the people of Israel: you shall say to them,
The Lord bless you and keep you;
the Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.
“So shall they put my name upon the people of Israel, and I will bless them.”—Numbers 6:22-27
If you’re not good at making up spontaneous prayers, just memorize and pray the bold above, every night upon your wife and children. 3
We long to be blessed by our fathers, to be protected by our fathers, to be praised by our fathers. This is done through blessings, encouragements and protection prayers. Men, I admonish you to begin one or even all of the above five today.
All of Ezekiel 18 is worth reading: The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge’? As I live, declares the Lord God, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel. Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: the soul who sins shall die. “If a man is righteous and does what is just and right— if he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbor’s wife or approach a woman in her time of menstrual impurity, does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, does not lend at interest or take any profit, withholds his hand from injustice, executes true justice between man and man, walks in my statutes, and keeps my rules by acting faithfully—he is righteous; he shall surely live, declares the Lord God. “If he fathers a son who is violent, a shedder of blood, who does any of these things (though he himself did none of these things), who even eats upon the mountains, defiles his neighbor’s wife, oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not restore the pledge, lifts up his eyes to the idols, commits abomination, lends at interest, and takes profit; shall he then live? He shall not live. He has done all these abominations; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon himself. “Now suppose this man fathers a son who sees all the sins that his father has done; he sees, and does not do likewise: he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbor’s wife, does not oppress anyone, exacts no pledge, commits no robbery, but gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment, withholds his hand from iniquity, takes no interest or profit, obeys my rules, and walks in my statutes; he shall not die for his father’s iniquity; he shall surely live. As for his father, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother, and did what is not good among his people, behold, he shall die for his iniquity. “Yet you say, Why should not the son suffer for the iniquity of the father?’ When the son has done what is just and right, and has been careful to observe all my statutes, he shall surely live. The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself. “But if a wicked person turns away from all his sins that he has committed and keeps all my statutes and does what is just and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die. None of the transgressions that he has committed shall be remembered against him; for the righteousness that he has done he shall live. Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked, declares the Lord God, and not rather that he should turn from his way and live? But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die. “Yet you say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way not just? Is it not your ways that are not just? When a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it; for the injustice that he has done he shall die. Again, when a wicked person turns away from the wickedness he has committed and does what is just and right, he shall save his life. Because he considered and turned away from all the transgressions that he had committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die. Yet the house of Israel says, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ O house of Israel, are my ways not just? Is it not your ways that are not just? “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, declares the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions, lest iniquity be your ruin. Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord God; so turn, and live.” ↩
A friend wrote me an email after reading this article tonight and it read: “As a veterinarian, I can tell you that wounds that are licked fester and become extremely gross.” I had never thought of licking wounds this way! ↩
There is a modern myth among conservative Catholics that only a priest can bless people. This is simply not the tradition of the Church. You can find St. Catherine of Siena blessing people. You can find biological fathers blessing their family in all ancient rites of the Catholic Church (Roman, Byzantine, Armenian, Greek, Russian, etc.) To be sure, there are some unique things about a priest’s blessing. First, only a priest carries with him the whole blessing of the Church behind him. Secondly, it is probably best that only the priest bless with his whole arm “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (although I think some non-priestly saints did this occasionally, too.) But certainly, every father of a family can bless his wife and children by tracing the sign of the cross on her forehead as he says the above prayer, “The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.” Every mother can bless her children in a similar way, but she can not bless her husband this way. This is not to say that she is not holier than him. She probably is holier than her husband! But God established the blessing to go down the latter of spiritual authority, not holiness. This is also why a holy layman should not bless a rotten priest. The layman’s prayers for the priest will be more powerful than vice versa, but we must respect the authority given in a blessing. Finally, I want to give one more reason why you should not be afraid of blessing your children: Satanists and witches have absolutely no qualms about cursing strangers (especially those with big families) with their diabolical hexes, curses and voodoo. Families should not live in fear of these people. Why? Because the curses of Satanists upon children are not as powerful as the blessings that parents bring into their children’s lives…provided the parents are actually blessing their children before bed. Again, just trace the sign of the cross on their forehead as they go to bed and bless them in spontaneous prayer or the above Aaronic blessing. ↩
“For at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.”—Ephesians 5:8
The Mass and Salvation History, part 2. This two-part series is based on the stained glass around the high altar and sanctuary, here at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Jacksonville, Florida. All of salvation history culminates in the single sacrifice of the Last Supper and Calvary, found in both of the center panes. The featured landscape image above is the sculpture of the Last Supper, found under the mensa of the high altar. Pictures for reference to the podcast are on my blog. They are numbered 1 to 9, going west to east with a north-facing high altar (still liturgical ad orientem, of course.) Today is 5 to 9 on the East Side, seen below on the blog.
5) Wedding Feast of Cana (Jn 2)
6) Abraham and Isaac (Gen 22)
7) Passover (Ex 12)
8) Multiplication of the Loaves (Mt 14)
9) Calvary (Jn 19)
The Mass and Salvation History, part 1. This two-part series is based on the stained glass around the high altar and sanctuary, here at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Jacksonville Florida. All of salvation history culminates in the single sacrifice of the Last Supper and Calvary, both found in the center panes. The featured landscape image is a stained glass from the nave. Pictures for reference to the podcast are on my blog. They are numbered 1 to 9, going west to east with a north-facing high altar (still liturgical ad orientem, of course.) Today is 1 to 4 on the West Side.
- Pentecost (Acts 2)
2) Melchizedek (Gen 14)
3) Moses and God giving Manna (Exodus 16)
4) Last Supper (Lk 22)
This sermon is about Mount Tabor and the Transfiguration by way of the Sermon on the Mount and the countercultural calling of the Maccabean martyrs.
This is a talk I gave to the North Shore Latin Mass Society. It considers the historical, mystical and theological perspectives of the five sorrows of the Rosary.
Why do Christians keep the 10 Commandments but not the kosher laws of Leviticus? What do the Irish have to do with the Galatians of Turkey? This and more on today’s podcast.