Friday, September 30, 2011

Outrageous: 14-year-old Boy Suspended for Saying Homosexuality is Wrong

Dakota Ary
Honor student Dakota
Ary, 14, punished for
saying the truth.
A Christian schoolboy was suspended from Western Hills High School in Texas for saying he thought that “being a homosexual is wrong.”


Can you believe this?

The boy’s name is Dakota Ary, and here is his story:

According to news reports, during a German class, Dakota’s teacher started talking about religion and homosexuality in Germany, and even posted a picture on the wall of two men kissing.

Dakota turned to a friend and said he was a Christian and that “being a homosexual is wrong.” The teacher reportedly overheard his comment and sent him to the principal's office. Then, the assistant principal at Fort Worth’s Western Hills High School called Dakota’s mother and said her son was given an in-school suspension, plus two-days of full suspension for what he had said in class against homosexuality.

Send your instant e-protest to Western Hills High School

After several protests, the school agreed to partially revoke the suspension so that Dakota could play in an upcoming football game. But his mother wants the suspension to be completely eliminated from her son's school record, which is only natural, since he did nothing wrong.

Please send a peaceful protest message to the Western Hills High School, telling them that you also think that Dakota Ary did nothing wrong in expressing his belief that homosexuality is wrong.

God fearing Americans must speak out NOW, while they still have the freedom to do so. Otherwise, everyone who disagrees with homosexual vice may soon be forced into silence. And perhaps even punished. Or jailed. In fact, people in Canada and Sweden have already been arrested and jailed for speaking out against homosexual vice. We must not let that happen in America.


Thursday, September 29, 2011

St. Michael the Archangel, Prince of the Heavenly Hosts

St. Michael the Archangel, from the Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, sec. XV

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Great Little Book: Francisco of Fatima

When America Needs Fatima first published its children’s biography of the youngest of the three little Fatima seers, Jacinto Marto, it was well received by young and old alike. Jacinta’s Story by Andrea F. Phillips continues to be in popular demand and has gone through several printings.

One question, however, has persistently been asked by many: What about her brother, Francisco? Is there a story of his life?

It is with great pleasure that America Needs Fatima now presents a short biographical profile of this Fatima seer titled A Great Little Story: Francisco of Fatima by the Portuguese Jesuit, Fr. Fernando Leite. The book features charming illustrations by TFP artist Jose Roberto Dias Tavares.
Blessed Francisco Marto.

This is not just any book about Francisco. It offers a deep spiritual lesson that will help all grow closer to Our Lady by following in the footsteps of Blessed Francisco Marto. Francisco became a heroic soul in face of grave dangers. He grew up as an ordinary child, concerned with playing and unconcerned about the greater world outside of his own.

After Our Lady appeared to him, his life was so radically transformed that his only thought was giving himself totally to Our Lady.

He became focused on the immense evil that had infected society at that time and caused the loss of so many souls in the battlefield of life.

The little boy soon possessed great sanctity. In fact, he made such rapid progress in sanctity that it was commonly agreed that in one short week he advanced as much as many saints advance in a year. His primary concern for the rest of his brief life on earth was that God not be offended and that He be glorified.

His mission after Our Lady’s apparition focused on four points:

1) A belief in his mission to console Our Lord and to offer sacrifices to save souls;
2) Approaching his mission with great seriousness and logic;
3) A spirit of sacrifice taken to heroic levels, and,
4) Continuous prayer and reflection.

The book, Francisco of Fatima can be very helpful for those who want to walk in the footsteps of Francisco. We can do this by:

1) Developing a firm belief in Catholic doctrine;
2) Taking this doctrine seriously;
3) Having a spirit of sacrifice and continuous prayer.

Following Francisco’s example, one can do more than survive the onslaughts of the enemies of one’s soul. One can obtain total victory over them, help save souls, save one’s own soul and be happy with God and all the Heavenly Court forever.

This book can be an excellent first step in following in Francisco’s footsteps.

Order your copy today by calling toll-free (888) 317-5571.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Brown University Student Comments on Intolerance of TFP

The following commentary was published the Brown Daily Herald by student guest columnist Garret Johnson:

"There is also a general attitude at Brown that there are only two acceptable political views: liberal, or very liberal. This intolerance of conservative political views reached a fever pitch March 23 when the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property came to College Hill to protest Rhode Island's proposed legalization of gay marriage. The group held signs, played bagpipes and handed out pamphlets with their arguments against gay marriage.

"To say that Brown students reacted fiercely would be a gross understatement. While the society members stood on the Main Green and exercised their First Amendment right to free speech, Brown students surrounded the group. One student spat on one of the protesters. Another ran through and ripped a large "Traditional Marriage" banner. Others were seen giving the middle finger to the protesters. The students may have thought terrorizing the protesters and vandalizing their property was funny.

"The University never apologized to the protesters for the broken property, nor did it reprimand the students involved. But to anyone observing the events of March 23, supposedly liberal and accepting Brown students seemed hypocritical, seeking tolerance of different nationalities and skin colors, but not of different political views.

To see how the TFP was treated during this campaign in defense of traditional marriage, see the video by clicking here.

Monday, September 26, 2011

EWTN Host Encourages America Needs Fatima Rosary Rallies

At the beginning of The Life on the Rock program on EWTN, host Doug Barry promotes the America Need Fatima Rosary Rallies by name, mentioning the fact that more than 7000 are scheduled this year, and encouraging viewers to contact America Needs Fatima to get involved.

The full hour program can be seen here:

The important part begins at 1:30 and goes till 4:30. There was another slight mention at the hour's end.

To get involved in this year's Rosary Rallies, click here

Friday, September 23, 2011

Same-sex “Marriage”: Accept it or Resign!

Same_sex____Marriage_____Accept_it_or_Resign__.jpgWriten by John Horvat II

When the New York state legislature rammed through a law “legalizing” same-sex “marriage” this last summer, countless New Yorkers disagreed with the decision. Among them were Christian town clerks who could not in good conscience sign marriage licenses for a union they consider sinful.

Clauses were written in the law that supposedly protect clergy from being forced to act against their faith. However, such clauses do not apply to town clerks or any other government official.

Clerks are told point blank, either accept the law, or resign. Town clerk Rose Marie Belforti of Ledyard, New York found out the hard way. When the law passed, Belforti, a dairy owner and cheese maker, decided her Christian conscience would not allow her to sign same-sex “marriage” licenses. She did not deny them a license but merely asked that another official sign such licenses in her place. Since that other official is not always in, applicants are now asked to make an appointment.

When two applicants of the same sex did indeed ask for a license, the arrangement did not satisfy them. They were outraged by the inconvenience of making an appointment with the clerk’s substitute who now signs all licenses. The case has raised a tempest among the homosexual network nationwide. Indignant cries of religious bigotry and disregard for the law have been leveled against Rose Marie Belforti. Her dairy’s Facebook page now has abusive comments charging her with homophobia where once there were compliments about her bleu cheese.

In the sleepy town of less than 500 families, the local town clerk that normally issued ten licenses a year has been put in the national spotlight. Lawyers are threatening lawsuits against the unassuming dairy farmer. People for the American Way and the law firm Proskauer Rose are now co-representing the two applicants as they demand that Belforti either issue the marriage licenses against her conscience or resign. Online petitions are circulating asking that the clerk be dismissed.

Public officials can’t pick and choose the laws they want to follow,” cries an indignant Michael Keegan, President of People For the American Way Foundation. “If a public official simply decides to shirk the obligations of her office, then she should resign and be replaced by someone who will do the job and carry out state law.”

Drew Courtney, a spokesman for People for the American Way points out: "She has a job to do. That job is to administer the paperwork and licenses of marriages in accordance with the state laws that govern it."

However, it seems the do-your-job-or-resign option only works one way. When it comes to the promotion of the homosexual cause, it appears officials can pick and choose which laws they want to defend. However, there is no indignation from offended liberals when these public officials refuse to do their job and carry out the law.

The most obvious case is the February decision of the Obama Administration’s decision that its Justice Department will no longer defend the constitutionality of Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) banning federal recognition of same-sex “marriage.” The House of Representatives was forced to assume the responsibility for defending the abandoned law signed by then-President Bill Clinton in 1996.

The constitutionality of laws is, of course, determined by the courts -- not by the executive branch. However, in this case favoring the homosexual agenda, it seems the public official can shirk the responsibility of the office and flatly refuse to defend the law of the land.

A second case in point is that of Proposition 8 in California. Voters across the state decided to amend the State Constitution and recognize marriage as between one man and one woman. Since the constitution is the law of the state, state officials are obliged to defend that law despite their personal opinions. However, when the amendment was challenged, then-California Attorney General Jerry Brown and then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger refused to defend the amendment which is part of the State Constitution. Defenders of traditional marriage are now petitioning to ask if they can defend the disregarded rights of the majority that voted for Proposition 8.

In the case of Rose Marie Belforti, she has not refused to carry out the law or grant licenses. She merely delegated it to others. However, in the case of DOMA and Proposition 8, the elected executives have unilaterally decided not to uphold the present law. No one from People For the American Way is calling for these elected officials to resign.

There is a double standard here that must be addressed. Obviously the uproar in New York is not about the principle of law that is supposedly being transgressed. It is about an agenda that tramples upon the conscience of officeholders, disregards laws and constitutions and ignores the opinions of majorities. It is agenda that forces itself upon the nation and is definitely not part of the American Way.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

How Far Can They Go? Hay is a Polutant?

During his presentation on the status of the nation’s new country-of-origin labeling (COOL) law, and on behalf of the R-CALF USA COOL Committee, Kansas cattle feeder Mike Callicrate was asked a non-COOL question that set convention goers on their heels during the 12th Annual R-CALF USA Convention held August 26-27 in Rapid City, S.D.

“Has the Environmental Protection Agency declared hay a pollutant?” an audience member asked. Callicrate responded affirmatively and explained that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently initiated a formal enforcement action against his Kansas feedlot for, among other things, failure to store his hay in a pollution containment zone. “Now that EPA has declared hay a pollutant, every farmer and rancher that stores hay, or that leaves a broken hay bale in the field is potentially violating EPA rules and subject to an EPA enforcement action,” Callicrate said. “How far are we going to let this agency go before we stand up and do something about it?”

Callicrate said the EPA does not appear to be going after the corporate feedlots. “EPA is turning a blind eye toward the mega-feedlots that are a real risk for pollution and, instead, is antagonizing small to mid-sized family operations in an effort to help their packer-partners capture the entire live cattle supply chain away from family farm and ranch operations.”

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Our Lady's Statue 'Guards' House From Texas Wildfire

Smoke from a raging wildfire still filed the sky when one evacuee in Texas returned to his home. He found his home unscathed thanks to a statue of Our Lady that he believes stopped the fire.

The Texas wildfire had been burning for days across central Texas last week and incinerated about 1,400 homes and tens of thousands of acres of land. It has burned every yard and everything on them in the Ranch Crest Subdivision of Montgomery County, Texas, CNN reported. “But miraculously all the homes here are still standing.”

The fire line came right up to a barely two-foot tall statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe placed on two stones and resting against a tree in the Garcia’s garden, and then stopped suddenly.

Garcia discovered this after he returned home for the first time after four days, and thanked the Virgin Mary. “She protected our home, everybody’s homes. We prayed to it before we left to protect everybody’s homes,” he told CNN, pointing toward the statue outside his house.

(Be careful when viewing the advertisement in the beginning. It changes and we cannot be sure what will appear!)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Scenes from Meeting in St. Lous: Our Lady of Good Counsel

In Sunday, September 18, about 30 friends and supporters of the American TFP and its America Needs Fatima campaign gathered at St. Joe's Java in St. Charles to hear about the fascinating story of the miraculous picture of Our Lady of Good Counsel of Genazzano - one of the most extraordinary shrines in all of Christendom.

The inspiring story of Our Lady of Good Counsel teaches us not only to ask for counsel but to expect extraordinary solutions to our problems.

Below are some scenes from the talk.

The place of the talk at the coffee shop inside the St. Joseph's Radio building directed by Mrs. Lucille Cortese (

Part of the audience before the talk

During the talk: Much interest and many questions about Our Lady of Good Counsel.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

TFP Meeting in St. Louis: Extraordinary Solutions for Impossible Situations: The Story of Our Lady of Good Counsel

Hear the fascinating story of the miraculous picture of Our Lady of Good Counsel of Genazzano - one of the most extraordinary shrines in all of Christendom.

The story itself is very inspiring and should give us courage as Our Lady of Good Counsel teaches us not only to ask for counsel but to expect extraordinary solutions to our problems.

Don't miss this opportunity to increase your devotion to Our Lady!

A free picture of Our Lady of Genazzano will be given to all who attend.

Guest speaker: Mr. John Horvat- Director from Tradition Family and Property

When? Sunday September 18 at 2:30PM

Where? St. Joe’s Java

3920 South Old Hwy 94

St. Charles, MO


Click here for a Google map

Please forward this information to any and all who you think would be interested and able to attend.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Remembering Our Lady of Sorrows

September 15 is the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows.

About this day, Abbot Prosper Guéranger comments how Our Lady, whom God predestined to be the Mother of His Son, was united in her person to the life, mysteries and suffering of Jesus, so that she might be a faithful cooperator in the work of Redemption.

He notes that God must consider suffering to be a great good since He gave so much suffering to His Son, Whom He loved so much. And since, after His Son, God loved the Holy Virgin more than any other creature, He also wanted to give her suffering as the richest of all presents.

In the solemnity of this feast, we principally remember Mary on Calvary where she suffered the supreme sorrow of all sorrows that filled her life. Indeed, so great was Mary's grief on Calvary that, had it been divided among all creatures capable of suffering, it would have caused them all to die instantly.

If the Church limits the number of sorrows to seven, it is because this number has always symbolized the idea of totality and universality. To understand the extent and suffering of Our Lady, one must know the extent of her love for Jesus. Her love as Mother of God only augmented her suffering. In fact, nature and grace came together to produce profound impressions on the heart of Mary. Nothing is stronger and more pressing than the love that nature gives a mother for her son or that grace gives for God.

These considerations help us understand the role of suffering in our lives.

We see we are not alone in our suffering. In fact, the immensity of the crosses suffered by Our Lady was so great that we might also say she suffered not seven, but all sorrows. She is Our Lady of All Sorrows since no one suffered more.
Statue of Our Lady of Hope, Macarena, venerated at
The American TFP’s national headquarters, in Spring Grove, Pennsylvania.

While it is true that all generations will call her blessed, to a lesser but immensely real degree, all generations may also call her "sorrowful."

Thus, we need to understand better that when sorrow enters our lives, it is a proof of God's love. And when we are not visited with sorrow, we do not have all the proofs of God's love for us.

It is in sorrow that our mettle is tested. Moreover, one finds a note of maturity, stability and rationality in those who suffer and who suffer much. And so we should understand that when adversity, difficulties, misunderstandings, bad health and conflicts visit us, we must not see them as things that should never happen. To suffer is normal in this vale of tears.

If she, whom God loves so much, suffered, how much more should we suffer. He, who God and Our Lady love, suffers because God will not refuse to give him that which He gave abundantly to the two whom He loved most: Our Lord Jesus Christ and Our Lady.

Thus, we must see temptations, trials, stress and so many other sufferings as something normal in life. We must ask that sufferings pass but when they persist, we must bless God and Our Lady.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

What Our Lady Said at Fatima on September 13, 1917

The Fifth Apparition — September 13, 1917

A crowd estimated at twenty thousand observed atmospheric phenomena similar to those of the previous apparitions: the sudden cooling of the air, a dimming of the sun to the point where the stars could be seen, and a rain resembling iridescent petals or snowflakes that disappeared before touching the ground. This time, a luminous globe was noticed which moved slowly and majestically through the sky from east to west and, at the end of the apparition, in the opposite direction. The seers saw a light, and, immediately following this, they saw Our Lady over the holm oak.

Our Lady: Continue to pray the Rosary to obtain the end of the war. In October, Our Lord will also come, as well as Our Lady of Sorrows and Our Lady of Mount Carmel, and Saint Joseph with the Child Jesus, to bless the world. God is pleased with your sacrifices, but He does not want you to sleep with the ropes; wear them only during the day.

Lúcia: They have requested me to ask you for many things, for the cure of some sick persons, of a deaf-mute.

Our Lady: Yes, I will cure some, others not. In October, I will perform a miracle for all to believe.

"And rising, she disappeared in the same manner as before."

* * *

This account is based on the book
Our Lady at Fatima: Prophecies of Tragedy or Hope for America and the World?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Zeal for the Most Holy Name of Mary

Written by Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira

In times past, people considered names to be symbolic of the person. This was so true that for a long time people even gave great importance to initials, a kind of symbol of the name, which in turn is a symbol of the person.

Thus, a name was considered to be a symbol of the more profound psychological, moral and spiritual aspects of the person. The name of Our Lady, like the Most Holy Name of Jesus, should then be considered symbolic of the hallowed virtue of Our Lady, her mission, and all that which she represents.

From this standpoint, we venerate the name of Our Lady since it is an affirmation of her interior glory, inner qualities and her person. The name of Mary is then the symbolic manifestation of all that exists of hallowed in Our Lady. By honoring this name we celebrate the glory that Our Lady has, had and will have, in heaven, earth and the entire universe.

Regarding her glory in heaven, all has been said. She is the queen of all angels and saints, placed above all creatures. She is placed incomparably and incommensurably above all creatures so that in the order of creation she is the high point toward which everything converges. She is our Mediatrix with God, Our Lord. The glory that she has by this fact is simply inexpressible and derives from her condition as Mother of the Savior, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Regarding her glory on earth, we consider how Our Lady must be glorified also on earth. The Glory be prayer states: Glory be to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The answer is: As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. Thus, it is normal to affirm that Our Lady should also be venerated on earth; and for her most holy Name to be glorified in an ineffable way.

Imagine a world like that of Christendom which would be influenced by the spirit of the great Marian apostle Saint Louis Grignion de Montfort. Imagine if the disciples of Saint Louis Grignion de Montfort were the salt of the earth and really set the tone for devotion to Our Lady throughout Christendom. Then we could understand what Our Lady’s glory in the world should be like. It would be incomparably more than it is today.

We see how greatly Our Lady was glorified by Holy Mother Church (at least until progressivism entered the scene). To us this glory seemed immense. However, it was nothing in comparison to the glory that she should have according to the spirit of Saint Louis Grignion de Montfort. We must ardently love Our Lady’s glory because it is unbearable for her not to have the glory that she should have. It simply is most odious and execrable that vice, crime, the Revolution and the wickedness of men have managed to diminish the glory that she should receive from men.

Our zeal for the glory and name of Our Lady should be as children in their mother’s house. How could a son feel fine in his mother’s house when he sees others refusing to give the attention due to her? How can we feel happy on earth, which is under Our Lady’s queenship, when we see her being refused her rightful honors and respect? This must be a continuous reason for us to have much more than just grief but great indignation that the Queen is not being recognized by all in the role which is her own.

The preceding article is taken from an informal lecture Professor Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira gave on September 11, 1964. It has been translated and adapted for publication without his revision. –Ed.

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Lessons of 9/11

Written by John Horvat II
The Lessons of 9/11
On the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, it is fitting that we reflect on what has changed in America.

Of course, no one doubts that 9/11 was a defining point in our history. All remember where they were on that fateful day. However, we would venture to say that 9/11 was more than just a shocking physical attack on our homeland. It was a symbolic attack on our way of life. It was also a rude awakening that served to shake us from an optimistic hedonistic vision of life that is the product of our Hollywood-driven culture.

In this sense, there were many lessons that we learned from the attacks. We were forced to confront reality head on and question this false vision of life. Contrary to the sentimental notion that all men are basically good, we found ourselves facing evil, irrational men capable of cold-blooded murder on a grand scale. Contrary to our relying on technology to solve all our problems, we found our technological advantage could not deliver us from this evil. In fact, our technology not only failed but they used it against us by slamming our own jets into the World Trade Center using low-tech $5 box cutters as weapons.
Shaken from a hedonistic way of life, we found ourselves facing evil and what it is capable of. And were forced to endure enormous suffering in a culture that does everything to deny it.

We were forced to endure enormous suffering in a culture that does everything to deny suffering and tries to make everything end “happily ever after.” Finally and most importantly, we were invited to turn to God for solace and strength in our suffering.

We learned all these lessons from the attacks and we do not hesitate to say that we took them to heart. America did not become discouraged but rose to the occasion in a show of strength and unity that disconcerted the enemy. Today, the al-Qaida network that engineered the attacks lies in ruins. Atop the fallen towers, a new tower arises. Another attack has not taken place.

In an impressive display of patriotism, American youth enlisted in the armed services often sacrificing promising careers to fight for our country. Contrary to our hedonistic culture, these valiant soldiers fought with great sacrifice, endured great hardship and inspired admiration and respect. Our armed forces deserve the gratitude of our nation.
Our Lady of Fatima Ground Zero
God, to Whom we turned in our sorrow in 2001, has been disinvited from this year’s commemoration ceremonies.

In fact, all Americans participated in this same generosity and idealism by their support of these efforts. We believe Providence cannot but look with favor on this spirit of generosity, idealism and self-sacrifice. Indeed, when men put grand causes before their own self-interest, it opens the way for God’s grace to work.

On this tenth anniversary, we remember all these things. However, we must also realize that the fight is not over. The Islamist threat is still there as can be seen by the increasing persecution of Christians worldwide. Perhaps more disconcerting are those who would minimize the notion of this threat in the name of political correctness.

We are further reminded of the continuing cultural fight when we see that the God to whom we turned in our sorrow in 2001, has been disinvited to the ceremonies this September 11. We see that chaplains and religious leaders are not invited for New York City’s tenth anniversary commemoration “service.”
Keep the Cross at Ground Zero
Moreover, there are those who are suing to remove the iron beam cross from the Ground Zero site. Others would build a mosque near the site.

Thus, on this September 11, all Americans are invited to remember those who tragically died and take to heart the lessons we have learned over these ten long years. However, we are also invited to embrace the cross and press the attack.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Nativity of Our Lady

Written by Fr. Thomas de Saint-Laurent

Many days passed before God finally completed the masterpiece of His creation. For nine months, the soul of Mary had given form to her virginal body, and the hour of her happy birth approached. As the suffocating Palestinian summer neared its end, the mellowing sun poured abundant torrents of golden light on the opulent plain of Samaria, ripening the rich orchards of autumn fruit. On a magnificent September day, with nature adorned in radiant beauty, the most Holy Virgin came into the world in the white-walled city of Nazareth.

She was probably born in the same house where the great mystery of the Incarnation later took place and where Jesus spent most of His childhood and youth in work and prayer. The angels did not acclaim the coming of the glorious Queen with hymns of joy as they later did the birth of the Savior. Invisible to the eyes of mortal men, the angels considered it an honor to mount guard around the humble crib over which Saints Joachim and Anne lovingly watched. The prophecy of Isaias had come to pass. The root of Jesse, ten centuries removed, had sprouted a new branch. On this same branch in but a few years more would blossom the eternal Flower, the Incarnate Word.

Her divine Son would soon appear representing a new dawn of hope upon a world plunged for four thousand years into the darkness of pain and death.

The day the Queen of Heaven was born ranks as one of the most beautiful in history since it announced to condemned mankind the long-awaited time of liberation. In commemorating this great event, the Church bursts forth in its enthusiasm: “Thy nativity, O Virgin Mother of God,” sings the Church in its liturgy, “has announced joy to the whole world” — Nativitas tua, Dei Genitrix Virgo, gaudium annuntiavit universo mundo.

Indeed, we seem to forget in what horrible distress the world lay prostrate before the coming of Christ.

The sin of our first parents had borne the fruit of death. Until the coming of the Savior, the curse of the Almighty lay heavily upon sinful humanity. Adam had eaten of the forbidden fruit in the wild hope of becoming like God. With terrible irony, God stripped him of his magnificent privileges and reduced him to extreme misery. Thus, the ancient world was founded upon oppression of the weak and disregard for human dignity. The greater part of mankind was subject to the torments of slavery. Even Rome, the proud bearer of civilization, considered the multitude of its slaves as but an immense herd destined for slaughter. Indeed, masters had the power to send their slaves to their deaths solely to amuse themselves. The refined patricians of the Imperial City would sometimes use these poor souls as fodder for the salt-water eels they raised. Nothing satisfied their gluttony more than these delicious marine eels, fattened on human blood.
In an epoch plunged in discouragement, the Jews believed Providence had abandoned them. It was then that the hidden work of infinite Mercy began to be accomplished in their midst.

The distress of souls was even more acute. Adam had supposed that he could do without God. He unappreciatively spurned his Sovereign Benefactor. God, in return, withdrew from His creature. He did not abandon mankind altogether, however, but spoke to him at rare intervals, announcing the future coming of a virgin who would crush the head of the serpent under her immaculate heel. He raised up prophets from among the people, yet He hid Himself within His inaccessible light.

Moreover, the Lord had not allowed the source of grace to cease entirely. He did not refuse His pardon to the repentant sinner, granting it under the sole condition of a perfect contrition. Even so, amid the temptations of the flesh and deprived of the abundant spiritual help now available to us, the weakest souls fell by the thousands into the infernal pit.

Poor men of ancient times! They keenly sensed their weakness and vulnerability, and they searched in intense anguish for some way to gain supernatural assistance in their necessity. God, a spiritual Being, escapes man’s rude senses, so men made idols in which to place their utmost hope. Alas, these statues were deaf and did not hear the heartrending cries arising from forty centuries of distress.

Yet, this terrible nightmare wherein mankind struggles dissipates like a dense nocturnal fog before the sweet morning light. The quadrant of eternity marks the hour of its infinite mercy. The birth of Mary begins the work of Redemption. In her crib, the mother of the Savior illuminates the desolate earth with the grace of her first smiles. Jesus will soon appear and, with His Precious Blood, will erase the sentence of our condemnation. The world which has suffered so, will finally delight in the joy of liberty and peace. Slavery will everywhere be abolished, and human dignity will henceforth be respected. Like a flowing stream, graces will spring forth in abundance from the sacraments. We have but to approach and draw from them — without limit — pardon, courage, and life everlasting.

The God who hid in Paradise will descend to earth and never abandon mankind. After His Ascension, Our Lord will remain among us under the Eucharistic veil until the end of time, when the Real Presence will leave the destroyed tabernacles. Christ will then visibly reign over the glorious souls of the resurrected elect. Such are the great joys the birth of Mary announces. “Thy nativity, O Virgin Mother of God has announced joy to the whole world.”
The birth of Mary begins the work of Redemption. In her crib, the mother of the Savior illuminates the desolate earth with the grace of her first smiles.

The birth of the Blessed Virgin was, then, one of the foremost events of history. Let us now examine how the birth was received and draw lessons from this meditation that will benefit our interior lives. The holy Fathers of the Church express the impact of the birth of the Immaculate Virgin on the invisible world by describing the heavens overwhelmed with wondrous admiration. The angels were at a loss to find adequate praises for acclaiming the adorable Trinity for having created her who was the beloved Daughter of the Father, and who would become the Mother of the Word Incarnate and the Spouse of the Holy Ghost. Nor did they weary of admiring the beauties of their queen. The blessed spirits, who rejoice at the conversion of a single soul, rejoiced upon seeing the appearance of the sure Refuge of sinners. They knew that Mary would one day be the Gate of Heaven who would never refuse entry into the eternal kingdom to those who invoked her with confidence. The Fathers also note the immense sigh of relief of the just in limbo, those who had died since the beginnings of the world, as well as the furor of the demons in Hell, who saw the approaching end of their tyrannical reign.

How was the birth of Mary, which delighted heaven and terrified the fallen angels, received on earth? The birth of Saint John the Baptist several years later was accompanied by miracles that vividly impressed the popular imagination. The inhabitants of Judea asked themselves with admiration: “What will become of this child whose arrival in this world is hailed by so many prodigies? What, then, will this child be?” The sublime mission of Mary far surpassed that of the Precursor. Yet, nothing extraordinary indicated to the multitudes that she who was promised to sinful man immediately after the fall and whom the prophets had announced throughout the centuries was born. In fact, the Immaculate Virgin was born amid universal indifference.

According to certain traditions, no one in the small town of Nazareth where Saints Joachim and Anne lived paid heed to the new arrival. Although the blood of David flowed in her veins, her family had fallen from its ancient splendor. Who noticed these impoverished people?

Anne and Joachim had been childless for many years, but the Lord had at last answered their prayers. They saw their daughter Mary as the measure of His celestial goodness to them. Little did they suspect, however, the veritable treasures the Most High had instilled in the soul of their child. They could not have imagined the wonder of her Immaculate Conception. They did not realize that the Mother of the Redeemer lay in their loving arms.

The Jews of the time were plunged in discouragement. The voice of the prophets had not been heard for years. Having lost their political freedom, they believed Providence had abandoned them. It was then that the hidden work of infinite Mercy began to be accomplished in their midst.
Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
By sin mankind spurns our Sovereign Benefactor, and God withdraws from His creatures. Yet never entirely. And He will intervene at the very moment when we believe ourselves completely abandoned – if we have confidence.

These facts speak for themselves and teach us an obvious lesson. Would that the obscurity of Our Lady’s birth teaches us to make little of human greatness! Let us keep a Christian perspective of indifference toward the fleeting vanities that Christ Himself shunned in His Mother’s birth. Were these important, surely He would not have refused them to His mother.

This great mystery also teaches us never to lose heart. The Immaculate Mother came into the world at a time when the Jews had lost hope. Indeed, they thought all was lost. Let us reap the benefit of this lesson. We often become discouraged when, calling on heaven to assist us, our request is not immediately granted. Sometimes God waits until we are on the brink of the abyss before extending His hand of mercy. So, let us not become discouraged and cease praying! The Almighty will intervene at the very moment when we believe ourselves completely abandoned. If we have confidence — an unlimited supply of confidence — we will be greatly rewarded!

Saint Thomas of Villanova explained in a sermon that Mary is the heavenly dawn, not only for the world, but especially for each individual soul. He recalled the great truth taught by Catholic tradition that a soul imbued with devotion to the Blessed Virgin carries within it the sign of predestination. Do you firmly desire to be saved from final damnation? Then faithfully honor Mary. Do you wish to guarantee the salvation of those who are dear to you? Obtain from them the promise that they not fail to recite some prayer to Mary every day. Catholic Tradition states that a servant of Our Lady cannot perish: Servus Mariae non peribit. He will forever sing the mercy of Jesus and of His holy Mother.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Miraculous Medal Gets Fatima Fliers Printed on Time

Written by Robert Ritchie

My friend Sergio De Paz from Miami, Florida, went to the printer last week to pick up copies of the America Needs Fatima invitation flier for the upcoming Rosary Rally at Miami's Tropical Park on September 10.

The printer gave him some bad news.

"Sorry fliers are not ready. The printer is out of order and out of ink. Come back next week.”

Mr. De Paz reached in his pocket and took out the Miraculous Medal that he had just received the day before from America Needs Fatima in the mail.

He placed the Medal on the printer and said to the shop owner, "Let’s say a Hail Mary and ask Our Lady’s Miraculous Medal to help get this machine running."

They did just that. After praying they turned on the press again, and pushed the start button. The machine worked fine, and Mr. De Paz got his fliers printed right then and there.

He went home happy and with his fliers in a box, pondering whether this was just a coincidence or if it was a miracle worked by Our Lady’s Miraculous Medal.

After all, it’s called “miraculous” for a reason, right?

The flyer that needed to be printed (above)

If more Catholics would have faith in the power of Catholic sacramentals, and in Our Lady’s intercessory power to work miracles, they would be less inclined to look for solutions in false religions.

Turn off Oprah Winfrey and turn on Our Lady’s intercessions