8. Restating almost to the letter the teaching of the First Vatican Council's Constitution Dei Filius, and taking into account the principles set out by the Council of Trent, the Second Vatican Council's Constitution Dei Verbum pursued the age-old journey of understanding faith, reflecting on Revelation in the light of the teaching of Scripture and of the entire Patristic tradition. At the First Vatican Council, the Fathers had stressed the supernatural character of God's Revelation. On the basis of mistaken and very widespread assertions, the rationalist critique of the time attacked faith and denied the possibility of any knowledge which was not the fruit of reason's natural capacities. This obliged the Council to reaffirm emphatically that there exists a knowledge which is peculiar to faith, surpassing the knowledge proper to human reason, which nevertheless by its nature can discover the Creator. This knowledge expresses a truth based upon the very fact of God who reveals himself, a truth which is most certain, since God neither deceives nor wishes to deceive.(6)
9. The First Vatican Council teaches, then, that the truth attained by philosophy and the truth of Revelation are neither identical nor mutually exclusive: “There exists a twofold order of knowledge, distinct not only as regards their source, but also as regards their object. With regard to the source, because we know in one by natural reason, in the other by divine faith. With regard to the object, because besides those things which natural reason can attain, there are proposed for our belief mysteries hidden in God which, unless they are divinely revealed, cannot be known”.(7) Based upon God's testimony and enjoying the supernatural assistance of grace, faith is of an order other than philosophical knowledge which depends upon sense perception and experience and which advances by the light of the intellect alone. Philosophy and the sciences function within the order of natural reason; while faith, enlightened and guided by the Spirit, recognizes in the message of salvation the “fullness of grace and truth” (cf. Jn 1:14) which God has willed to reveal in history and definitively through his Son, Jesus Christ (cf. 1 Jn 5:9; Jn 5:31-32).
10. Contemplating Jesus as revealer, the Fathers of the Second Vatican Council stressed the salvific character of God's Revelation in history, describing it in these terms: “In this Revelation, the invisible God (cf. Col 1:15; 1 Tim 1:17), out of the abundance of his love speaks to men and women as friends (cf. Ex 33:11; Jn 15:14-15) and lives among them (cf. Bar 3:38), so that he may invite and take them into communion with himself. This plan of Revelation is realized by deeds and words having an inner unity: the deeds wrought by God in the history of salvation manifest and confirm the teaching and realities signified by the words, while the words proclaim the deeds and clarify the mystery contained in them. By this Revelation, then, the deepest truth about God and human salvation is made clear to us in Christ, who is the mediator and at the same time the fullness of all Revelation”.(8)
11. God's Revelation is therefore immersed in time and history. Jesus Christ took flesh in the “fullness of time” (Gal 4:4); and two thousand years later, I feel bound to restate forcefully that “in Christianity time has a fundamental importance”.(9) It is within time that the whole work of creation and salvation comes to light; and it emerges clearly above all that, with the Incarnation of the Son of God, our life is even now a foretaste of the fulfilment of time which is to come (cf. Heb 1:2).
The truth about himself and his life which God has entrusted to humanity is immersed therefore in time and history; and it was declared once and for all in the mystery of Jesus of Nazareth. The Constitution Dei Verbum puts it eloquently: “After speaking in many places and varied ways through the prophets, God 'last of all in these days has spoken to us by his Son' (Heb 1:1-2). For he sent his Son, the eternal Word who enlightens all people, so that he might dwell among them and tell them the innermost realities about God (cf. Jn 1:1-18). Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, sent as 'a human being to human beings', 'speaks the words of God' (Jn 3:34), and completes the work of salvation which his Father gave him to do (cf. Jn 5:36; 17:4). To see Jesus is to see his Father (Jn 14:9). For this reason, Jesus perfected Revelation by fulfilling it through his whole work of making himself present and manifesting himself: through his words and deeds, his signs and wonders, but especially though his death and glorious Resurrection from the dead and finally his sending of the Spirit of truth”.(10)
For the People of God, therefore, history becomes a path to be followed to the end, so that by the unceasing action of the Holy Spirit (cf. Jn 16:13) the contents of revealed truth may find their full expression. This is the teaching of the Constitution Dei Verbum when it states that “as the centuries succeed one another, the Church constantly progresses towards the fullness of divine truth, until the words of God reach their complete fulfilment in her”.(11)
12. History therefore becomes the arena where we see what God does for humanity. God comes to us in the things we know best and can verify most easily, the things of our everyday life, apart from which we cannot understand ourselves.
In the Incarnation of the Son of God we see forged the enduring and definitive synthesis which the human mind of itself could not even have imagined: the Eternal enters time, the Whole lies hidden in the part, God takes on a human face. The truth communicated in Christ's Revelation is therefore no longer confined to a particular place or culture, but is offered to every man and woman who would welcome it as the word which is the absolutely valid source of meaning for human life. Now, in Christ, all have access to the Father, since by his Death and Resurrection Christ has bestowed the divine life which the first Adam had refused (cf. Rom 5:12-15). Through this Revelation, men and women are offered the ultimate truth about their own life and about the goal of history. As the Constitution Gaudium et Spes puts it, “only in the mystery of the incarnate Word does the mystery of man take on light”.(12) Seen in any other terms, the mystery of personal existence remains an insoluble riddle. Where might the human being seek the answer to dramatic questions such as pain, the suffering of the innocent and death, if not in the light streaming from the mystery of Christ's Passion, Death and Resurrection.
The price of reconciliation is very high. It needs that all pride must be squeezed out of each heart. No reconciliation is possible when one refuses to find guilt in one's behavior. In today's world when there is the craze to rationalize in order to justify oneself for any and every action, reconciliation is not even sought after. Anger and hatred surface as a result. It is no wonder that we have families and nations torn apart. Prayer with the heart is a must! Without it, no one can find humility enough to apologize and ask for forgiveness either from God, from neighbor, or even from self.
Special graces are needed from God for reconciliation, graces which cannot be received unless we have a heart to Heart relationship with Him. Yes, the price of reconciliation is very high, but we only get what we pay for. If we wish to live a life of peace and joy, the highest quality of life known to God and man, we must be ready to humble ourselves before God and our fellowman at any price. Reconciliation is that experience of heart which the world today needs more than ever!
Those of us of the Fold, those of us who claim to be Mary's children, have every grace available to us, most certainly, the grace of total reconciliation. How Our Lady pleads for reconciliations amongst all of her children! It is no wonder that we hear of her apparitions beginning to come to an end. There is nothing else she can do. She has most assuredly outdone herself in our day. Let us all fulfill what she is asking and be reconciled with one another.
My little ones, the saints of Heaven interceded for you daily. They can help you draw closer to my Divine Son. They are recognized by Holy Mother Church in order that their lives might be an example for you. Therefore, draw closer to these holy saints, that they might obtain for you the graces you need in order to persevere in the time of great darkness.
I do solemnly tell you that the great darkness has already descended, but you do not recognize it because of the false light of the evil one's lies.
My little ones, soon I shall not be with you in this extraordinary way, and you are yet unconverted, stubborn in your pride.
Will you not in this time constantly seek the conversion of heart which I have asked for, for so many years? Each day come to my Divine Son in the Tabernacle and ask for the grace of conversion of heart. I solemnly tell you my Divine Son shall give it to all who ask.
I love and bless you. Thank you for responding to my Call!
Beloved of My Mother's Immaculate Heart, with what Love do I gaze upon My children. O! I see their hearts. I know all their desires. That which I thirst for the most is the giving of their own heart to Me. Do you not understand what happens in that moment? O! My Own Divine Heart is so overflowing with Divine Love that I can not contain My Mercy. It pours forth like a torrent, and completely annihilates the poor, weak human heart. Quite overcome, the human heart dissolves into My Own, learns from It, and beats with It, in My Own Time there is complete Mystical Union.
This is what I yearn for. This is My Joy at giving Myself to you in the Blessed Sacrament.
On this day, My children come in faith, unselfishly seeking to free the Holy Souls from their punishment. Any heart which beats so unselfishly shall not be turned away. I shed My Mercy and Grace upon the Holy Souls. All of their sufferings are suspended in that moment. By the virtuous sacrifice given Me on their behalf, countless are forever freed and joined to the Beatific Vision.
Yet how few of my children come to Me. How few can come to tell Me of their Love. They speak ceaselessly of their desires, but only a few come with enough faith to say to Me, "I love You, My Lord and My God."
Do you not then understand My deep Sorrow because I gaze upon only a few of My loved ones? Where are they upon whom I have lavished My graces and gifts for their earthly life? Where are they who run to Me and strike their breast when they are given a cross, but when they have been helped to carry the cross, they turn deaf ears to My Voice which calls them closer? Where are My children, why do they refuse to spend time with Me?
I solemnly tell you that the moment is coming when, as Just Judge, I shall say to them "I know you not". In that moment their curses shall fill all the earth, but their anguish will last for eternity.
I ask each of My children to come to Me. Reverence, honor, glory and praise belong to Me; it is I Who have given you all that you possess. Not man.
You are living in the end times. Great shall be your trials. Greater still your rejoicing when, having persevered in the time of darkness, you shall witness My Glorious Return.
Be no longer filled with pride. Rather, humble yourself before Me and do violence to your weak, sinful nature. Only in this way shall you draw into My Heart, Which is the Golden Door. Only in this way shall the tears be turned into everlasting joy!
Behold, I am Your God. Behold, I go to the harvest. Behold, all that has been told you shall come to pass. I give you My Blessing that you might believe, and convert your heart. Listen to My Mother, who announces My Return. Pray. Fast. Convert your hearts. No longer neglect Me, Who am Eternal King.
Death of Blessed Contardo Ferrini a Professor of Roman law at the University of Messina in Sicily who was known for his tremendous piety and humility.
Birth of John Krol in Cleveland, Ohio. He would go on to become a priest and bishop and be elevated to the rank of Cardinal in June, 1967. This former president of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops was the Archbishop emeritus of Philadelphia and died while in Rome early this year at the age of 88. He was a close friend of Pope John Paul II and had escorted him when Cardinal Karol Wojtyla visited the United States before becoming Supreme Pontiff.
Mother Teresa founds the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta, India on this day born from a desire to fulfill the gospel of love taught by Jesus in seeing Him in every human being no matter how poor, downtrodden or sick they might be. Mother's order, known for the trademark blue and white sari, has become one of the most well known and beloved throughout the world in less than fifty years.
Vatican Radio begins its first broadcast on this day as directed by Pope Pius XII.
Pope John Paul II beatifies Blessed Don Luigi Orione, Blessed Bartolomea Longo and Blessed Maria Anna Sala.