2/17 Why Do We Venerate the Martyrs?

The term “Martyr” is derived from the Greek word “martyr” which means “a witness”.  Truly, a martyr is a witness of heroic love of God, a witness of unbending faith and a holocaust.  The Second Vatican Council in the “Constitution on the Church” gives the following meaning of martyrdom: “Since Jesus, the Son of God, manifested His charity by laying down His life for us, so too no one has greater love than he who lays down his life for Christ and His brothers … By martyrdom, a disciple is transformed into an image of his Master by freely accepting death for the salvation of the world, as well as by his conformity to Christ in the shedding of his blood.  The Curuch then considers martyrdom as an exceptional gift and as the truest proof of love.” (§ 42)

We honor the Martyrs not only as heroes of the holy faith, but also as our intercessors before God.  Their innocent blood and wounds are a most powerful and appealing prayer, which the Lord cannot resist.

 

Book of Heaven
5/3/00 – Vol. 3

The Feast of the Cross in Heaven.

This morning I found myself outside of myself, and I saw all of Heaven studded with crosses – some small, some large, some medium; some which were larger, emanated more splendor.  It was a most sweet enchantment to see so many crosses adorning the firmament, more refulgent than suns.  Then, it seemed that Heaven opened, and one could see and hear the feast that the Blessed were making for the cross.  Those who had suffered more were celebrated more on this day.  One could distinguish in a special way the martyrs and those who had suffered in a hidden way.  Oh, how esteemed were the cross and those who had suffered more, in that blessed dwelling!

As I was seeing this, a voice resounded throughout the whole of Heaven, saying:  “If the Lord did not send the crosses upon the earth, He would be like a father who has no love for his own children – who wants to see them poor and dishonored, instead of honored and rich.”

The rest that I saw during this feast I have no words to describe.  I can feel it within me, but I am unable to express it; so I remain silent.

2/16 REFLECTIONS AND PRACTICES From the First Hour of the Passion

(Click here for The Hours of the Passion

Before beginning His Passion, Jesus goes to His Mother to ask for Her Blessing.  In this act Jesus teaches us the obedience, not only external but also internal, which we must have in order to reciprocate the inspirations of grace.  Sometimes we are not ready to put into practice a good inspiration, either because we are held back by love of self united to temptation, or because of human respect, or in order not to use holy violence on ourselves.

But rejecting the good inspiration of exercising a virtue, of accomplishing a virtuous act, of doing a good work, or of practicing a devotion, makes the Lord withdraw, depriving us of new inspirations.

On the other hand, the prompt correspondence, pious and prudent, to Holy Inspirations attracts more lights and graces upon us. 

In the cases of doubt, one should turn promptly and with righteous intention to the great means of prayer and to upright and experienced advice.  In this way, the good God will enlighten the soul to execute the healthy inspiration, increasing it for her greater benefit.

We must do our actions, our acts, our prayers, The Hours of the Passion, with the same intentions of Jesus, in His Will, sacrificing ourselves as He did, for the glory of the Father and for the good of souls. 

We must place ourselves in the disposition of sacrificing ourselves in everything for love of our Lovable Jesus, conforming to His Spirit, operating with His own Sentiments, and abandoning ourselves in Him, not only in all the external sufferings and adversities, but much more in all that He will dispose in our interior.  In this way, at any time, we will find ourselves ready to accept any suffering.  By doing this, we will give sweet sips to our Jesus.  Then, if we do all this in the Will of God which contains all Sweetnesses and all Contentments in Immense proportion, we will give to Jesus large sweet sips, so as to mitigate the poisoning which other creatures cause Him, and to console His Divine Heart.

Before starting any action, let us always invoke the Blessing of God, so that our actions may have the touch of the Divinity, and may attract His Blessings not only on us, but upon all creatures.

My Jesus, may Your Blessing precede me, accompany me and follow me, so that everything I do may carry the seal of Your “I Bless you.”

2/15 Luisa, Jesus’ Simple Dove, His Beloved Dwelling, His Living Temple

The Servant of God, Luisa Piccarreta

 

Volume 2; September 9, 1899

Now, while sitting in the shade of this tree, Jesus looked at me with tenderness, all paternal, and taken by a surge of love, such that it seemed He could not contain it within Himself, He embraced me tightly and began to say: “How beautiful you are! You are My simple dove, My beloved dwelling, My living temple, in which I AM pleased to delight united with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Your continuous languishing for Me relieves Me and refreshes Me from the continuous offenses that creatures give Me. Know that the Love I have for you is so Great that I AM forced to hide it in part, so that you may not become insane, but may live. In fact, if I showed it to you, you would not only become insane, but would not be able to continue to live; your weak nature would be consumed by the Flames of My Love.” While He was saying this, I felt all confused and annihilated, and I felt myself sinking into the abyss of my nothingness, because I saw myself all imperfect; especially, I noted my ingratitude and coldness at the so many graces that the Lord gives me. But I hope that everything will be for His Glory and Honor, hoping, with firm confidence, that in an effort of His Love He may want to conquer my hardness.

Volume 4; November 22, 1901

After going through most bitter days of tears, of privation and of silence, my poor heart can bear no more. The torment of being outside of my center, God, is so great, that I am continuously battered amid dense waves of a fierce storm in a state of strong violence, such that I suffer death at each moment, and, what’s more, I cannot die.

As I was in this position, He made Himself seen for a little while and told me: “My daughter, when a soul does the will of someone else in everything, it is said that she has trust in that person, therefore she lives from someone else’s volition, and not from her own. In the same way, when the soul does My Will in everything, I say that she has Faith. So, Divine Will and Faith are branches produced by the same trunk; and since Faith is simple, Faith and Divine Will produce a third branch, that of simplicity. And here is how the soul comes to reacquire the characteristics of a dove in everything. Don’t you want, then, to be My dove?”

Volume 12; May 23, 1918

This morning my sweet Jesus did not come, and I spent it amid sighs, anxieties and bitternesses, but all immersed in His Will. As the night came, I could not take any more, and I kept calling Him over and over again. My eyes could not close, I felt restless – I wanted Jesus at any cost. At that point He came, and said to me: “My dove, who can say to you the flights that you take in My Will, the space that you cover, the air that you swallow? No one, no one – not even you would be able to say it. I alone – I alone can say it; I, who measure the fibers; I, who number the flights of your thoughts, of your heartbeats; and as you fly, I see the hearts that you touch. But, do not stop – fly to more hearts, and knock, again and again; and fly over again, and on your wings bring My ‘I Love you’ to more hearts, to make Me Loved; and then, in one single flight, come to My Heart to take refreshment, to then start again more rapid flights. I amuse Myself with My dove, and I call the Angels and My little Mama to amuse themselves with Me. But, you know? I AM not telling you everything; the rest I will tell you in Heaven. O! how many surprising things I will tell you.”

Then He placed His Hand on my forehead and added: “I leave you the shadow of My Will, the Breath of My Volition. Sleep.” And I fell asleep.

Volume 16; October 30, 1923

Then, in the meantime, I felt I was losing consciousness, and I saw a dove, all afire, that was agonizing, and Someone near it Who, with His Burning Breath, was feeding the dove with His Flames in order to nourish it, preventing it from taking any other food, holding it tightly and so close to His Mouth, that it could do nothing other than breathe and swallow the Flames which came from Him. And the poor dove agonized and turned into those Flames with which it was Nourished. I was surprised in seeing this, and my sweet Jesus, moving in my interior, told me: “My daughter, why do you fear that I might leave you? In order to leave you, I should leave Myself, which I cannot do. As much Power as I have, I do not have the Power to detach from Myself. The same for the one who does My Will: since he becomes inseparable from Me, I lack the Power to detach from him; not only this, but I keep nourishing him with My own Flames. Have you not seen that dove, all afire? It was the image of your soul, and the One who was feeding it with His Burning Breath was I, who Delight so much in Nourishing the one who Lives in My Will with only the Flames unleashed by My Heart, through My Breath.

“Don’t you know that the one who Lives in My Will must be filtered through Its Most Pure Light? And to be filtered is more than to be put under a press, because even though the press smashes everything to pieces, it lets everything out – skin and seeds, which settle down at the bottom and leave always something cloudy. On the other hand, when something is filtered, especially then, if it is filtered through the thick Light of My Will, there is no danger that it might deposit something cloudy; rather, everything is Clear, similar to the Clearness of the Light through which it has been filtered. And this is a Great Honor for the soul who Lives in My Will – that whether she thinks, speaks, loves, etc., My Will takes on the commitment to filter whatever she does through Its Most Pure Light. And this is necessary, so that in everything she does, there may be no distinction from what We do, but all things may hold hands and share their Likeness.”

Now, as He was saying this, I found myself outside of myself, inside a Garden, and, tired, I sat down under a tree to rest. But the rays of the Sun darted through me in such a way that I felt I was burning. I wanted to go under some other tree, a thicker one, that would produce more shade, so as not to be hurt by the Sun; but a Voice (it seems to me that it was my beloved Jesus) prevented me from doing so, saying: “The one who Lives in My Will must be exposed to the Rays of the Burning and Eternal Sun, in order to Live of Light, see nothing but Light, and touch nothing but Light. This leads to the Deification of the soul. Only when the soul is all Deified in God – then can it be said that she Lives in My Will. Rather, come out from under this tree and stroll in this Celestial Eden of My Will, so that, scanning you thoroughly, the Sun may convert you into Light, and may give you the final brush stroke of the Deification in God.” I began to stroll, but as I was doing this, obedience called me back into myself.

Volume 19; June 20, 1926

Then after this, my sweet Jesus moved in my interior, and, all tenderness, told me: “My daughter, tell Me, what about your ideal, your purpose – what is it?” And I: “My Love, Jesus, my ideal is to fulfill Your Will, and all my purpose is to reach the point at which no thought, word, heartbeat and work of mine may ever go out of the Kingdom of Your Supreme Will; even more, in It may they be Conceived, Nourished, Raised and Form their Life, and if needed, also their Death, though I know that in Your Will no act dies, but once it is Born it Lives Eternally. So, it is the Kingdom of your Will in my poor soul that I long for, and this is all my ideal and my primary and ultimate purpose.” And Jesus, all Love and making Feast, added: “My daughter, so, My Ideal and yours are one, and therefore one is our Purpose. Brava, brava, the little daughter of My Will! And since your ideal and Mine are one, you too have sustained the battle of long years to conquer the Kingdom of My Will. You had to endure pains, privations, and have been even a prisoner in your little room, bound to your little bed, to Conquer that Kingdom so much Wanted and Longed For by Me and by you. It cost much to both of us, and now we are both Triumphant and Conquerors. So, you too are the little queen in the Kingdom of My Will, and even though little, you are always queen because you are the daughter of the Great King – of Our Celestial Father. Therefore, as Conqueror of a Kingdom so Great, take Possession of all Creation, of all Redemption and of all Heaven – everything is yours, because your Rights of Possession extend wherever My Will Reigns as Whole and Permanent. All are waiting for you to give you the Honors that befit your Victory.

“You too are the little baby who has so much cried and longed for her Jesus. But as soon as you have seen Me your tears have stopped, and flinging yourself onto My Lap, you have attached yourself to My Breast and, victorious, you have suckled My Will and My Love. As though in Triumph, you have taken rest in My very Arms, and I rocked you so that your sleep might be longer, and I might enjoy My newborn in My own Arms; and, Triumphant, I extended the Kingdom of My Will in you. Also, you are the tiny little dove that has made its Round and made its Round around Me, and while I spoke to you about My Will, Manifesting to you the Knowledges about It, Its Goods, Its Prodigies and even Its Sorrow, you beat your wings, and hurling yourself over the many Seeds I placed before you, you grabbed them with your beak and, Triumphant, you continued your flight around Me, waiting for more Seeds of My Will that I would place before you. And, again, grabbing them with your beak, you nourished yourself and, Victorious, continued your flight, Manifesting the Kingdom of My Will. So, My Prerogatives are yours, My Kingdom and yours are one; we have Suffered together – it is right that together we enjoy our Conquests.”

Special Protection from the Holy Family

 

Special Protection from the Holy Family
Message given by the Eternal Father on October 30, 2018

to Fr. Michel Rodrigue, Founder of
The Apostolic Society of St. Benedict Joseph Labre, Abitibi, QC, Canada

“Whoever will act according to My Will, will be safe.”

            “My son, listen and write.  I desire that this message be communicated to everyone, in all the places where you have preached in the United States and in Canada.

            “Remember the night when Padre Pio brought you into Heaven to see the Holy Family?  It was a teaching for you and for the people who heard you.  It was also a sign to remember the night when My Beloved Son, Jesus was born into the world.

            “Remember how My Evangelist, Matthew, wrote by Divine inspiration of the Holy Spirit, how the star stopped over the place where My Baby Son, Jesus, was born.  It was a sign for the Wise Men.  Today, it is a sign for you and for all Christians, and for all the nations.

“The Holy Family is a sign for every family, and we should model ourselves after them.  I desire that every family who receives this message should have a representation of the Holy Family in their home.  It can be an icon, or a statue of the Holy Family, or a permanent manger in a central place in the home.  The representation must be Blessed and Consecrated by a priest.

            “As the star followed by the Wise Men stopped over the manger, the chastisement from the sky will not hit Christian families devoted to, and protected by, the Holy Family.  Fire from the sky is the chastisement for the horrible crime of abortion, for the culture of death, sexual perversion, and lust in regards to the identity of man and woman.  My children seek after perversion more than their Eternal future.  The increasing blasphemies and persecution of My just people offend Me.  The arm of My Justice will strike now.  They do not heed to My Divine Mercy.  I must now allow for many plagues to come in order to save as many souls as I can from the slavery of Satan.

            “Send this message to everyone.  I have given Saint Joseph, My representative on earth as protector of the Holy Family, the authority to protect the Church, that is the Body of Christ.  He will be the protector during the trials of this time.  The Immaculate Heart of My daughter, Mary, and the Sacred Heart of My Beloved Son, Jesus, with the Chaste and Pure Heart of Saint Joseph, will be the shield for your homes and for your family, and your refuge during the events to come.

            “My Words are My Blessing over all of you.  Whoever will act according to My Will, will be safe.  The Powerful Love of the Holy Family will be manifested to all.  I AM your Father, These are My Words!”

2/14 It was the Cross that made Jesus recognized as God. The cross of pain and the cross of love.

Book of Heaven
3/8/01 – Vol. 4

 

Continuing in my poor state, and with the silence of blessed Jesus, this morning, as I was oppressed more than ever, on coming, He told me: “My daughter, it was not my works, nor my preaching, nor the very power of my miracles that made Me recognized with clarity as the God I am, but when I was put on the Cross and lifted up on It as though on my own throne – then was I recognized as God. So, the Cross alone revealed Me to the world and to the whole of hell for Who I really was. All were shaken and recognized their Creator. Therefore, it is the Cross that reveals God to the soul, and makes known whether the soul is truly of God. It can be said that the Cross uncovers all the intimate parts of the soul and reveals to God and to men who she is.”

Then He added: “Upon two crosses do I consume souls – one is of pain, the other is of love. And just as in Heaven all nine choirs of Angels love Me, though each one has its distinct office – as for example, the special office of the Seraphim is love and their choir is positioned more in the front in order to receive the reverberations of my love; so much so, that my love and theirs, darting through each other, correspond continuously – in the same way, I give to souls on earth their distinct offices: some I render martyrs of pain, and some of love, as both of them are skillful masters in sacrificing souls and in rendering them worthy of my satisfactions.”

2/13 Hours of the Passion

 Reflections and Practices form Seventh Hour: From 11 PM to Midnight

 

In this third hour of Gethsemane, Jesus asked for help from Heaven; and His pains were so many that He also asked for the comfort of His disciples. And we—do we always ask for help from Heaven in any painful circumstance? And if we turn also to creatures, do we do this with order, and with those who can comfort us in a saintly way? Are we at least resigned, if we do not receive those comforts that we were hoping for, using the indifference of creatures to abandon ourselves more in the arms of Jesus? Jesus was comforted by an Angel. And we—can we say that we are the angel of Jesus by remaining around Him to comfort Him and share in His bitterness? However, in order to be as a true angel for Jesus, it is necessary to take sufferings as sent by Him, and therefore as Divine Sufferings. Only then can we dare to console a God so embittered. Otherwise, if we take pains in a human way, we cannot use them to comfort this Man-God, and therefore we cannot be His angels.

In the pains that Jesus sends to us, it seems that He sends us the chalice in which we must place the fruit of those pains. And these pains, suffered with love and resignation, will turn into a most sweet nectar for Jesus. In every pain we will say, “Jesus is calling us around Him to be His angel. He wants our comforts, and so He makes us share in His pains.”

My Love, Jesus, in my pains I look for Your Heart to rest, and in Your pains I intend to give You shelter with my pains, so that we may exchange them, and I may be Your consoling angel.

2/12 Rest from Work

One characteristic of sanctifying Sunday is rest from strenuous physical work.  during the first centuries Christians did not enjoy freedom of religion and were persecuted. For the early Christians, therefore, Sunday was an ordinary workday.  Since they had to work during the day, they conducted their Sunday services in the late evening, or early morning.

Sunday rest began to assume greater significance when in 313 A.D. the Church was granted complete religious freedom under emperor Constantine the Great.  The first laws regarding Sunday rest did not come from the Church, but from the state.  In 321 A.D. Emperor Constantine issued an edict in which he decreed:  “On the most revered day of the Sun let all judges, townspeople and all laborers rest.  Only let the farmers in the villages work freely without hinderance.”  The historian Eusebius (+c.340) testified that the Emperor Constantine the Great made Sunday a day of prayer, ordered all his subjects to put aside their work and excused all Christian soldiers from duty so that they might attend Sunday Service.  The Emperor Theodosius the Great (379-395) first of all forbad all public spectacles, then later in the decree of 386 he prohibited all court proceedings, commercial, business and legal transactions. Whoever violated this law incurred the same penalty imposed for sacrilege.  Such civil laws, of course, promoted the observance of Sunday as a holy day of prayer and rest.

Concurrent with civil legislation, the Church began more and more to enjoin there faithful to abstain from physical work on Sunday.  The Council of Laodicea in Asia Minor in 364 prescribed Sunday rest “as far as possible”.  Emperor Leo the Wise (886-911) forbade farmers to work on Sunday.  The patriarch of Constantinople Nicephor (806-815) declared that Christians should not even travel on Sunday, unless it was necessary.  As early as the eighth century we find more and more local synods prescribing Sunday rest.

In the West, Emperor Charlemagne in 789 banned work on Sunday as a violation of the third commandment of God.  In 1243, under Pope Gregory IX, the law of Sunday rest became a universal practice in the Latin Church.

From this, it is evident that the celebration of Sunday is the oldest and a very sacred Christian tradition, which originated with the Apostles themselves.  Consequently, participation in the Divine Liturgy and the observance of Sunday rest should be for us a natural practice of evident spiritual value.  We must not forget that obligation to keep Sunday holy is not only a Church law, but basically also a divine law from which no dispensation can be given.  Even if for grave reasons we cannot be present in Church for Sunday services, nevertheless, we are obliged to keep Sunday holy in our own way. We can do this, for example by frequent remembrance of God, longer prayers, spiritual reading, and guarded speech and conduct.

In this regard Metropolitan A. Sheptytsky, O.S.B.M says: “The law that enjoins presence at the Divine Liturgy, and the law of rest or inactivity on Sunday, are Church laws which only define, explain and complement more clearly the natural and positive law of God in the Mosaic legislation … Nothing can at any time dispense from the law of God, neither ecclesiastical authority nor burdensome circumstances.  All are obliged to observe the Law of God, even if it means risking or losing one’s life … Thus the obligation to observe Sunday, in so far as it is a Church law, does not oblige when its fulfillment involves a great burden and inconvenience … But the third commandment is such, that no burden, no inconvenience and no authority whatever has the power to dispense from it; because the third commandment is also in the New Testament a commandment of God; that is, an obligation that is inviolable and infallibly and indiscriminately binding on all. This obligation is also an obligation of the natural law, that is, an obligation which every person can know from natural reason and experience in his conscience.  To fail to fulfill that part of the third commandment which pertains to the natural law is, therefore, a sin even under circumstances which relieve one of the obligation to participate in the  Divine Liturgy and to abstain from manual work.   The failure to observe that commandment will always be a sin, and consequently, a great loss and injury to the soul.”  (On the Observance of Sunday, 1942


Book of Heaven
6/9/22 – Vol. 14

As I was in my usual state, my always lovable Jesus would come very often; and sometimes He would lean His head upon mine, telling me: “My daughter, I need rest. The uncreated Intelligence wants to rest in the created intelligence. But in order to find true rest, I should find in your intelligence all the glory and the contentment which all other intelligences should give Me. Therefore my Will wants to expand your capacity to be able to find this rest. No, I am not content if my Will does not place in you all that the others should give Me.” Then, He seemed to breathe over my intelligence, and it remained as though chained by many threads of light, for as many created minds as came out of the hands of our Creator. And each thread of light said: “Glory, gratitude, honor… to my God, trice Holy.” And Jesus said: “Ah, yes, now I can rest! I find the return of the intelligence of Creation; the created mind is fused with the Uncreated Mind.” …

… After this He came back again, but all afflicted; and He told me: “I feel sad when they think that I am severe, and that I make more use of Justice than of Mercy. They are with Me as if I were to strike them in each thing. Oh, how dishonored I feel by these ones! In fact, this leads them to remain at due distance from Me, and one who is distant cannot receive all the fusion of my Love. And while they are the ones who do not love Me, they think that I am severe and almost a Being that strikes fear; while by just taking a look at my Life they can only notice that I did only one act of Justice – when, in order to defend the house of my Father, I took the ropes and snapped them to the right and to the left, to drive out the profanators. All the rest was only Mercy: Mercy my conception, my birth, my words, my works, my steps, the Blood I shed, my pains – everything in Me was Merciful Love. Yet, they fear Me, while they should fear themselves more than Me.”