Many have circulated prayers and novenas to halt the pandemic — a noble, urgent Catholic action. But perhaps such prayers should go deeper. Perhaps the focus first should be on purging whatever it was and is that caused this strange lingering chastisement, for a warning/chastisement it is.
It seems purging long has been what the Blessed Mother has indicated.
After the debacle of Hiroshima, the anniversary of which was marked last week, Mary entered the phase of apparitions that led to what we see today.
Far from fading after the cataclysms of the 1940s, the apparitions of this amazing woman, this astonishing and underestimated woman, grew to remarkable proportions.
It was the hour of battle with Satan and there came after Fatima other apparitions with more secrets, the appearances especially intense at the beginning of the Cold War. Similar miracles were soon reported around Italy and the rest of the continent — including the old site of Saragossa in Spain (where she manifested to James in the first century).
At place after place the sun whirled and pulsed and spun. It moved. It turned colors. Mary’s time had arrived. The era had begun with the Miraculous Medal and, according to Father Johann G. Roten, director of the International Marian Research Institute, “between 1830 and 1981 (when Medjugorje began), there were close to a thousand major, minor, and related apparitions.”
Let that sink in.
Others gave estimates far higher. If every daily or weekly apparition were to be counted in cases where a seer had serial experiences — more than one — the number would not be calculable.
I don’t know how they derived their figure, but the French periodical Le Monde once estimated twenty-one thousand apparitions between 1976 and 1986.
Mary’s era, her most intense intervention, was at full throttle. Now apparitions once centered in Italy, Portugal, or France fanned across nations.
There were reports at Bethlehem. In Poland Sister Faustina had visions. In Dublin the Blessed Mother appeared during World War Two in front of a green clover-shaped cloud with the dragon at her feet. “Have faith,” she said. “The war will not reach Ireland.”
Up through 1946 she had been reported as a luminous figure over a mighty cliff in Kerrytown.
She was in Hungary. She was in Michigan. She was reported by four French girls in a major case at L’ile Bouchard. She came with a sun miracle at Casanova, Italy. I have a study of apparitions in Austria alone that, with a miracle per page, is a couple inches thick.
Suffice it to say apparitions were claimed from eastern Canada to Bellmullet, Australia. You can read much more about apparitions through history in The Last Secret.
The point is that in recent times, especially since the world wars, Mary’s appearances have been profligate — exploding like a metaphysical mushroom cloud (though ignored by or unknown to most Catholics).
As it said in The Last Secret: “She was concerned with Chapter 13 of Revelation. The rising beast. She was concerned with the evil that ruined men’s souls and brought earthly destruction. There had to be much more good than evil prevailing in order for her to prevent what an apparition in Fostoria, Ohio, called ‘the holocaust that is so near approaching.’
“Time after time she relieved man of plague and drought. She couldn’t do that forever. One day there would be a reckoning. One day there would be too many holes in the dam. That was how chastisement worked. They were mainly localized events. But as sin grew, so did they. As sin grew, the local chastisements became regional chastisements. If sin were great enough, the chastisement crossed national borders.”
Concluded the book (1998): “Something on the level of bubonic fever was now hanging over the horizon.”
This is what we face. While many argue frivolously over the legalities of faith, ignoring what Mary has emphasized, and instead making gossip of the Church, a run of chastisements loom. Perhaps it is the case that God acts mightily when in whatever city, region, or nation, those headed for hell outnumber those headed for purgatory or Heaven.
–Michael H. Brown
[adapted from The Last Secret]