The great host of Heaven was seen, and God spoke to it, saying: "Although you know and see all things in Me, however, because it is My wish, I will state My complaint before you concerning three things. The first is that those lovely beehives, which were built in Heaven from all eternity and from which those worthless bees went out, are empty. The second is that the bottomless pit, against which neither rocks nor trees are of any help, stands ever open. Souls descend into it like snow falling from the sky down to earth. Just as the sun dissolves snow into water, so too souls are dissolved of every good by that terrible torment and are renewed unto every punishment. My third complaint is that few people notice the fall of souls or the empty dwellings from which the bad angels have strayed. I am therefore right to complain.
I chose three men from the beginning. By this I am figuratively speaking of the three estates in the world. First, I chose a cleric to proclaim My will in his words and to demonstrate it in his actions. Second, I chose a defender to defend My friends with his own life and to be ready for any undertaking for My sake. Third, I chose a laborer to labor with his hands in order to provide bodily food through his work.
The first man, that is, the clergy, has now become leprous and mute. Anyone who looks to see a fine and virtuous character in him shrinks back at the sight and shudders to approach him because of the leprosy of his pride and greed. When he wants to listen to him, the priest is mute about praising me but a chatterbox in praising himself.
So, how is the path to be opened that leads the way to great joy, if the one who should be leading the way is so weak? And if the one who should be proclaiming it is mute, how will that heavenly joy be heard of?
The second man, the defender, trembles at heart and his hands are idle. He trembles at causing scandal in the world and losing his reputation. His hands are idle in that he does not perform any holy works. Instead, everything he does, he does for the world. Who, then, will defend My people if the one who should be their leader is afraid?
The third man is like an ass that lowers its head to the ground and stands with its four feet joined together. Sure, indeed, the people are like an ass that longs for nothing but things of the earth, which neglects the things of Heaven and goes in search of perishable goods. They have four feet, since they have little faith and their hope is idle; third, they have no good works and, fourth, they are entirely intent upon sinning. This is why their mouth is always open for gluttony and greed. My friends, how can that endless yawning pit be reduced or the honeycomb be filled by people such as these?"
God's Mother replied: "May you be blessed, my Son! Your grievance is justified. Your friends and I have only one word of excuse for You to save the human race. It is this: 'Have mercy, Jesus Christ, Son of the living God!' This is my cry and the cry of your friends."
The Son replied: "Your words are sweet to My ears, their taste delights My mouth, they enter My heart with love. I do have a cleric, a defender, and a peasant.
The first pleases Me like a bride whom an honest bridegroom yearns and longs for with divine love. His voice will be like the voice of clamorous speech that echoes in the woods.
The second will be ready to give his life for Me and will not fear the reproach of the world. I shall arm him with the weapons of My Holy Spirit.
The third will have so firm a faith that he will say: 'I believe as firmly as if I saw what I believe. I hope for all the things God has promised.' He will have the intention of doing good and growing in virtue and avoiding evil.
In the first man's mouth I shall put three sayings for him to proclaim. His first proclamation will be: 'Let him who has faith put what he believes into practice!' The second: 'Let him who has a firm hope be steadfast in every good work.' The third: 'Let him who loves perfectly and with charity yearn fervently to see the object of his love!'
The second man will work like a strong lion, taking careful precautions against treachery and persevering steadfastly.
The third man will be as wise as a serpent that stands on its tail and lifts its head to the skies.
These three will carry out My will. Others will follow them. Although I speak of three, by them I mean many."
Then He spoke to the bride, saying: "Stand firm! Do not be concerned about the world or about its reproaches, for I, Who heard every kind of reproach, am your God and your Lord."
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Revelations and Prophesies Imparted to St. Bridget of Sweden - Book Two: Chapter Twenty