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WEDNESDAY      October 28, 1998      SECTION ONE       vol 9, no. 211

To print out entire text of Today's issue, print this section as well as SECTION TWO

Our Lady chooses 1984 to manifest herself to many at Betania

      It was George Orwell who wrote the novel "1984" but it was the Blessed Virgin Mary who made that year very, very special when she fulfilled her promise to appear on May 13th, not only to the visionary Maria Esperanza de Bianchini, but also to the many who would be in attendance. It was the first open manifestation that Mother of God had come to announce to the world that this is truly her "land of grace" and that she wants all her children to become "Ambassadors of Reconciliation." In the fourt part, we trace the events leading up to her apparitions on the feast of Fatima and why Our Lady chose a small farm in the lush, tropical area of Betania south of Caracas. For the chapter, "Our Lady manifests herself to many," click on THE AGE OF MARIAN APPARITIONS.

The New Lourdes: Betania - Refuge of Reconciliation
part four

Our Lady Manifests Herself to Many

The Door to Jesus' Heart is there for the opening, but we refuse to see or acknowledge it because satan blinds us

     That is the gist of the two messages we bring you today from the Blessed Mother Mary to the Hidden Flower of the Immaculate Heart. Our Lady urges us to come to the Flame of her Divine Son's Sacred Heart for it is the Golden Door to Heaven by which we need to pass through to attain eternal life. Her messages to her earthly messengers are fast coming to an end and she endeavors to spur her children on, to turn them away from the world and concentrate on the ultimate rewards ahead. For messages number 253 and 254, click on "I SOLEMNLY TELL YOU..."

Messages Two Hundred Fifty-three and Two Hundred Fifty-four

Message Two Hundred Fifty-three, November 12, 1992

(Our Lady of the Assumption in Charlotte, North Carolina)
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)
          Beloved Hidden Flower, be at peace, for I see your struggles and I give you my Divine Son's Peace.

          Dear child, I ask you to say to all of my little ones that I, the Mother of God, desire all to hear and understand my words, for they are given to you from the Flame of Love of my Immaculate Heart. How my Immaculate Heart searches for all of my little ones, desiring only to enfold them in my motherly embrace so that, secure in my heart, they might fully embrace the Sacred Heart of my Divine Son.

          Dear children, there is no greater possession anyone could have, no greater prize won, no accomplishment more victorious than this - to be captured in the Love of the Sacred Heart of my Son, which is the Golden Door.

          Little children, I have spoken to you now for a long time; my time to be among you is coming to an end. Therefore, my children, please heed my words. Take seriously my messages and convert your hearts by means of prayer, penance, fasting, the Mass and Sacraments lest these things be taken from you.

          Those who are asleep in their faith are lulled by satan's great false peace. Many others, having been led astray, have now hardened their hearts and refuse the graces of God.

          This is the time of great doubt and confusion, when even my faithful little ones shall face temptations. I solemnly tell you do not fear. To those who strive to live their faith shall be given strength, and in that way they shall persevere. Now my words to many will appear even firmer. But as your mother, my love seeks to warn you, and to ready you for that which is to befall mankind.

          Do not be fooled, for all I have foretold shall come to pass. Pray! Pray! Pray! I love and bless you. I give you my Son's Peace. Thank you for responding to my Call!

Message Two Hundred Fifty-four, November 14, 1992

(Holy Family Church in Winston-Salem, North Carolina)
(Imparted to the Hidden Flower by the Immaculate Heart of Mary)
          Beloved Hidden Flower, I am with you. Say now to my little ones, that I desire all to be gathered beneath my Immaculate Mantle, but so few of my children come.

          My call is urgent. I invite. I beseech. As a mother, I plead. satan's forces are fully unleashed for he knows my Immaculate Heart shall triumph. Because your faith is so weak, you are his pawn, and he keeps you ensnared.

          Pray, my little ones. Pray ardently. Hope beyond measure. Love as my Divine Son loved. Suffer willingly, and ask God to allow the Triumph of my Heart now, that His Justice may be swift and many shall find Eternal Life. I love and bless you, my children.

          Thank you for responding to my Call!

So that the blind may see even though satan tries to cover our eyes with the mask of deceit

     Today we bring you two short vignettes - one reflects the great imitator and father of lies who is so clever. How clever? Just read "Satan's Beatitudes". The second is even shorter, but gets right to the point that to see something is to remember, but remember which is more important. That is the crux of "That the Blind may See"as we wrap up the Octoberfest Appeteasers before heading into a November Cornucopia of Appeteasers next week. For these two vignettes, click on OKTOBERFEST FOOD FOR THOUGHT APPETEASERS       Today's theological tidbits come from MR and EJB via e-mail and should really get one to think seriously about our own behavior. The first - "Satan's Beatitudes" is a twist on the Beatitudes imparted by Our Lord. Since satan is the great imitator, imagine his eight beatitudes and consider carefully if we do not pray, are we not his prey? The second, entitled "Seeing is believing!" deals with a sense of direction that we all must decide on sooner or later, not necessarily a physical operation or examination, but a spiritual one that will make us good as new - New grace, new man, in a new place - Heaven! The following vignettes are truly something to think about.

Satan's Beatitudes

          If the Devil (whom we don't hear much about today) were to write his beatitudes, they would possibly go something like this:

    • Blessed are those Christians who are TOO TIRED, TOO BUSY, TOO DISTRACTED to spend time with their fellow Christians in Church
        - they are my best candidates to backslide.

    • Blessed are those Christians who WAIT TO BE ASKED and EXPECT TO BE THANKED
        - I can use them to slow things down.

    • Blessed are those Christians who are TOUCHY, with a bit of luck they may STOP GOING TO CHURCH and get others to quit
        - they are my missionaries.

    • Blessed are those Christians who are VERY RELIGIOUS but GET ON EVERYONE'S nerves
        - they are my most effective stumbling blocks.

    • Blessed are those Christians who are TROUBLEMAKERS
        - they are my best wrecking crew.

    • Blessed are those Christians who have NO TIME TO PRAY
        - they are easy prey for me.

    • Blessed are those Christians who are COMPLAINERS
        - they are my best discouragers.

    • Blessed are YOU when you read this and THINK IT IS ABOUT OTHER people and not yourself
        - I'VE GOT YOU!!!

That the Blind may See!

      There's a story about a man who was slowly losing his memory. After an examination, the doctor said that an operation on his brain might reverse his condition and restore his memory. However, the surgery would be so delicate that a nerve might easily be severed and would cause him total blindness.

      "What would you rather have," asked the surgeon, "your sight or your memory?" The man pondered the question for a few moments and replied, "My sight, because I would rather see where I'm going than remember where I have been."

      Maybe finishing with a short prayer might put it all in perspective:

      Dear God, it is usually useless and often detrimental for us to rest on our past achievements or recall constantly our past failures and sins. Help us make today a new day and press ahead eager to serve You by serving and loving others. AMEN.


     Today is the Feast of the Apostles Saint Simon the Zealot and Saint Jude Thaddeus, patron of hopeless cases, while tomorrow is the Thirtieth Thursday in Ordinary Time. For the readings, liturgies, meditations and vignettes on these two Apostles, click on LITURGY

Wednesday, October 28, 1998

      First Reading: Ephesians 2: 19-22
      Psalms: Psalm 19: 2-5
      Gospel Reading: Luke 6: 12-16


         This apostle, Saint Simon the Zealot, shares the feast with Saint Jude Thaddeus because it is believed both were sent to Persia where they were martyred for the faith in the first century. St. Simon was referred to as the Cananean in Matthew 10: 4 and Mark 3: 18 and called the Zealot because of his great zeal in upholding the Jewish Law. (cf. Luke 6: 15 and Acts 1: 13) Cananean means "Zelotes" in Greek and therefore gives credence to this concept. It was also necessary to give him a title to distinguish him from Saint Simon Peter who Jesus constantly addressed as Simon in Sacred Scripture. After the Council of Jerusalem after Jesus' Ascension, Simon went to Egypt where he preached the Gospel there and then on to Carthage, up into Spain where James had been and even into Britain. Sailing back through the Mediterranean he returned to Jerusalem where he joined Jude on missionary journeys east to Syria, Mesopotamia and into Persia which is today Iran. Historians report that he was sawed in half and left to the beasts to devour. He is often depicted in art holding the instrument of his martyrdom. Again the eastern church differs in the account of this apostle, where his feast is celebrated on May 10, maintaining he died peacefully at Edessa on October 28, but because of the nature of his mission and the people he was ministering to, it is highly unlikely he escaped the crown of martyrdom. This fact was confirmed by Church scholar and historian Saint Fortunatus, bishop of Poitier in the 6th Century.


         The saint known as the Patron Saint of Hopeless Cases, Saint Jude Thaddeus was a cousin of Jesus since he was the nephew of the Blessed Mother and her chaste spouse St. Joseph. Jude was also the brother of Saint James the Less, a fellow apostle as pointed out in Luke 6: 16 and Acts 1: 13. In Matthew 13: 55 and Mark 6: 3 Jude is called only Thaddeus. Yet they are both the same man. In fact, most likely Jude was a boyhood companion of Jesus for his and James' father was Cleophas who died a martyr and whose wife was Mary of Cleophas who stood at the foot of the cross (cf. Matthew 27: 56 and Mark 15: 40). Both Jude and James left everything behind to follow Jesus, so taken were they with their childhood Friend Who had planted the seeds of a lasting vocation to follow Him. After the Council of Jerusalem, he left for Edessa where tradition tells that he healed the king of Edessa of leprosy by holding up a shield of Christ and proclaiming the Name of Jesus over the pagan ruler. Jude was instilled with special gifts of the Holy Spirit including ordering the demons to leave the pagan idols in many of the temples he visited. Once they were gone, the idol images toppled to the ground, smashing in pieces. It was a sign to all that Jude's God was the One True God. It is believed Jude returned to Jerusalem and then returned to Syria with Saint Simon. While it is believed Simon died in the city of Suanis, Persia, some believe Jude suffered martyrdom in Beirut which is today Lebanon. Jude wrote His Epistle warning Christian converts of the dangers of heresy and immorality some time between 62 and 67 AD after the death of his blood brother St. James who had been the Bishop of Jerusalem and before the death of Saint Peter for Peter referred to Jude's Epistle in his own Second Epistle (cf. 2 Peter 2: 6, 10-18; 3: 2-3). Some accounts relate Jude was crucified on the cross as an example to all, but most hold to the tradition that he was clubbed to death and beheaded. He is often depicted holding the face of Jesus and a club, the instrument of his martyrdom. In some illustrations, a flame protrudes from his forehead representing the power of the Holy Spirit. In the Devotions section there is a special Novena and Consecration to St. Jude.

Thursday, October 29, 1998

      First Reading: Ephesians 6: 10-20
      Psalms: Psalm 144: 1-2, 9-10
      Gospel Reading: Luke 13: 31-35


      Today's Devotions honor Saint Jude Thaddeus. For the Prayer to Saint Jude and Consecration to Saint Jude, click on PRAYERS TO SAINT JUDE

Special Prayers and Novena to Saint Jude

    Glorious Saint Jude Thaddeus, by those sublime privileges with which you were adorned in your lifetime, namely, your relationship with our Lord Jesus Christ according to the flesh, and your vocation to be an Apostle, and by that glory which now is yours in Heaven as the reward of your apostolic labors and your martyrdom, obtain for me from the Giver of every good and perfect gift all the graces of which I stand in need:
    Mention your request here

    May I treasure up in my heart the divinely inspired doctrines that you have given us in your Epistle: to build my edifice of holiness upon our most holy faith, by praying for the grace of the Holy Spirit; to keep myself in the love of God, looking for the mercy of Jesus Christ unto eternal life; to strive by all means to help those who go astray.
    May I thus praise the glory and majesty, the dominion and power of Him Who is able to keep me without sin and to present me spotless with great joy at the coming of our Divine Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.


    Saint Jude, Apostle of Christ and glorious martyr, I desire to honor you with a special devotion. I choose you as my patron and protector. To you I entrust my soul and my body, all my spiritual and temporal interests, as well as those of my family. To you I consecrate my mind so that in all things it may be enlightened by faith; my heart so that you may keep it pure and fill it with love for Jesus and Mary; my will so that, like yours, it may always be one with the Will of God.
    I beg you to help me to master my evil inclinations and temptations and to avoid all occasions of sin. Obtain for me the grace of never offending God, of fulfilling faithfully all the duties of my state of life, and of practicing all those virtues that are needful for my salvation.
    Pray for me, my holy patron and helper, so that, being inspired by your example and assisted by your prayers, I may live a holy life, die a happy death, and attain to the glory of Heaven, there to love and thank God forever. Amen.


      O God, You made Your Name known to us through the Apostles. By the intercession of Saint Jude, let Your Church continue to grow with an increased number of believers. Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

October 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message

   Dear children! Today I call you to come closer to my Immaculate Heart. I call you to renew in your families the fervor of the first days when I called you to fasting, prayer and conversion. Little children, you accepted my messages with open hearts, although you did not know what prayer was. Today, I call you to open yourselves completely to me so that I may transform you and lead you to the heart of my Son Jesus, so that He can fill you with His love. Only in this way, little children, will you find true peace - the peace that only God gives you. Thank you for having responded to my call.

For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE

Click here to go to SECTION TWO or click here to return to the graphics front page of this issue.

October 28, 1998 volume 9, no. 211   DAILY CATHOLIC