READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: http://www.oneyearbibleonline.com/july.asp?version=31July 28, 2008
(2Pe 3:11-12) Seeing then that all these things are to be dissolved, what manner of people ought you to be in holy conversation and godliness? Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of the Lord, by which the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with the burning heat?
FROM THE MAILBAG VIA Kathy: Sermon by Fr. Louis Campbell- Tenth Sunday after Pentecost, July 20, 2008 The Great Tribulation
Someone asked me if, in my opinion, the Great Tribulation would be starting soon. The Great Tribulation is that time foretold by Our Lord when His followers would endure great trial and suffering:
"They will deliver you up to tribulation, and will put you to death; and you will be hated by all nations for my name's sake. And then many will fall away, and will betray one another, and will hate one another. And many false prophets will arise, and will lead many astray. And because iniquity will abound, the charity of many will grow cold. But whoever perseveres to the end, he shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world, for a witness to all nations; and the will come the end" (Mt.24:8b-14).
If we look around us it is hard not to be convinced that the Tribulation has already begun. A Great Apostasy, also prophesied in Sacred Scripture, has been under way for the past forty or fifty years, and the spiritual devastation in both Church and world is beyond belief.
We must understand that spiritual devastation is a far greater evil than any kind of natural disaster. The whole world was in a state of shock over the great earthquake and accompanying tsunami that occurred in the Indian Ocean on December 26, 2004. The fires in California and the floods in the Midwest have left us all wondering what could happen next, and we fear even a financial tsunami. But even if the whole earth should quake and swallow up half of mankind, if most of the human race should die of famine or plague, or if a huge asteroid should strike the earth and leave the planet devoid of all life, it would not be as great a disaster as one mortal sin.
Yes, sin is the greatest evil. Our life on the earth is limited and must come to an end some day, but, hopefully, we will then enter into eternal joy in Heaven. Earthquakes, hurricanes and floods do not offend God. But mortal sin is an offense against the All Good and Holy God Who deserves only our love and gratitude. Mortal sin strikes against God in an attempt to kill Him. In fact, it did kill Him. Jesus Christ, the God-Man, surrendered His sacred humanity on the Cross as a Victim for the sins of the world.
Sin is the most horrible of all evils. And in these times sin is everywhere. It surrounds us, it threatens us, it haunts us, it attacks us. "The wages of sin is death," says St. Paul (Rom.6:23). Mortal sin has killed millions, even billions of human beings. If that is not a disaster, what is?
The Most Holy Virgin Mary, venerated in Ecuador as Our Lady of Good Success, appeared in the 1600's to Mother Mariana de Jesus Torres at the Conceptionist Convent in Quito, Ecuador, and told her that the twentieth century would be a time of great evil and persecution of the good. Millions of people would fall into Hell, including many bishops, priests, and nuns. Innocence in children and modesty in women would hardly be found anymore. Those who should speak out would remain silent, and the Church would lack the one leader who would be able to bring things to order once more. Knowledge of the apparitions would not be widespread until the time of these terrible disasters. Mother Mariana was asked to do penance for the people of our times, and she did.
Our Lady requested of Mother Mariana that a statue be made according to her likeness. Fearing that the bishop would not believe her, Mother Mariana delayed asking his permission. When she finally went to see the bishop he said to her: "What took you so long?" He had had a dream in which Our Lady told him to expect Mother Mariana's visit. He gave her the necessary permission to have the statue made. This apparition of Our Lady of Good Success has never been doubted or censured by the Church, and every bishop of that diocese since that time has approved and encouraged devotion to Our Lady of Good Success and her miraculous statue (a small replica of which we have in our sanctuary).
How is it possible that the world has fallen so deeply into the mire of serious sin? If we studied the secret societies (which Our Lady also spoke of at Quito) we would find that they have succeeded in seducing many into lives of sin. Priests and bishops have been their direct targets. And when the Church's leaders stray from the narrow way, the people soon follow them along the broad path that leads to destruction.
But we are responsible for our own sins. The world has no conscience anymore and has lost the sense of sin. We allow our consciences to be deadened by watching things on TV, DVD's and the internet that are filled with poisonous ideas and seductive images that destroy the soul. Why do we let them do this to us? Those who provide these things couldn't care less that they are sending us to Hell to cry and lament in horrible punishments for all eternity. They couldn't care less that they are robbing the young of their innocence and turning them into perverts and slaves of sin. Lets turn the tables on these agents of the devil and refuse to accept any more of their sickening garbage! We were made for better things. Lets choose only what is good and pleasing to God, and follow Christ alone from now on! Long live Christ the King!
The most encouraging thing is that Our Lady told Mother Mariana that these evil times would come to an end, and she would, by the power of God, overcome the devil and initiate a time of great triumph for the Holy Catholic Church. May that time come soon!
In the meantime, we must not fear the devil or sin itself. God's mercy is everlasting, and there is no sin which He is unable to forgive. Even when we are guilty of the gravest sins, there is joy among the angels of God when we repent. Think of this wonderful passage from St. Paul to the Romans:
"But where the offense has abounded, grace has abounded yet more; so that as sin has reigned unto death, so also grace may reign by justice unto life everlasting through Jesus Christ our Lord" (Rom.5:20b,21).
Our Lady of Good Success, pray for us!
Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 7- "On Joy-Making Mourning"18. Let your reclining in bed be for you an image of your declining into the grave, and you will sleep less. Let your refreshment at table be for you a reminder of the grim table of those worms, and you will be less indulgent. And in drinking water, do not forget the thirst in that flame, and you will certainly do violence to your nature.
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This month's archive can be found at: http://www.catholicprophecy.info/news2.html.