Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. On February 11th, 1858, Our Lady appeared to St. Bernadette to give her a message of prayer and penance for a world heading for disaster. She also came to confirm the new Dogma proclaimed by Pope Pius IX of the Immaculate Conception in 1854 (link below). She replied to St. Bernadette when asked who she was – “I am the Immaculate Conception.” To this day it is still a controversy. I can’t understand why – how in the world is the Eternal Father going to have the Holy Spirit come upon a woman of sin to conceive and bear His Only Begotten Son Jesus Christ? She was kept free from all sin from her conception for this reason – to be His first Tabernacle – immaculate and pure. God in His infinite wisdom knew she would consent to this august duty of becoming the Mother of Jesus and consequently our Mother as well. She was in perfect union to the Will of God from her conception. How could God have it any other way?
I have some words from Venerable Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen below. These words were taken from a talk he did on “Catholic Hour”, March 11, 1951. Those were the days!!! I never saw them but can only imagine. When I began to study how we got to the crisis we have now in the Church, I looked up the Catholic statistics that existed just for USA. From 1920 to 1960, numbers for Catholics were SOARING!! That would make any Freemason shake in his boots! What to do??? Take over the Vatican – open a council that will change everything – including the Mass – destroy the faith in the people and call it modernism. Modernism? Didn’t the priests from 1910 make an Oath Against Modernism (link below)? (Yes, but after the Council, Pope Paul VI – ripped it up and said it exists NO MORE! Modernism reigns!) And the rest is history! Priests left in droves rather than live against the oath they made to God. A history of decline that we are living in now.
Anyway – I digressed. Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen (who should be a declared saint by now but is being held up by the ecclesiastical freemasons) did amazing evangelizing to the WORLD on radio! Who needs a “new” evangelization when the traditional evangelization was working???? OK – let’s get to our talk by Bishop Fulton Sheen. (This is not in its entirety – too long – just highlights – enjoy and God bless!)
“God has two pictures of us; one is what we are, the other what we ought to be. He has the model and He has the reality; the blueprint and the edifice; the score of the music and the way we play it. God has to have these two pictures because in each and every one of us there is some disproportion and want of conformity between the original plan and the way we with our freedom, worked it out. The image is blurred; the print is faded; our free acts do not coincide with the law of our being; we fall short of all God wants us to be. (very sad)
But though God has two pictures of us, there is however one person in all of humanity of whom He has only one picture, and in whom there is perfect conformity between what He wanted her to be and what she is, and that is His Blessed Mother. Most of us are a minus sign, in the sense that we do not fulfill the high hopes the Heavenly Father has for us. But Mary is the equal sign. The Ideal God had for her, that she is in the flesh. The model and the copy are perfect; she is all that was foreseen, planned and dreamed. The melody of her life is played just as it was written.
That is why through the centuries, Christian liturgy has applied to her the words of the Book of Proverbs (Proverbs 8:22-36). Because she is what God wanted us all to be, she speaks of herself as the Eternal Blueprint in the Mind of God, the one whom He loved before she was a creature. She is even pictured as being with Him not only before Creation but at Creation. She existed in the Divine Mind as an Eternal Thought before there were any mothers. She is the Mother of mothers.
But God not only thought of her in eternity; He also had her in mind at the beginning of time. When the human race fell through the solicitation of a woman, God spoke to the Devil and said, “I will establish a feud between thee and the woman, between thy offspring and hers; she is to crush thy head, while thou dost lie in wait at her heels”, (Genesis 3:15) God was saying that if it was by a woman that man fell, it would be through a woman that God would be revenged; that evil would have its progeny, its mystical body, its Satanic communistic state, but that the Woman would have a progeny too who would be Our Lord, the Son of God, the Savior of the World.
His Mother was not like ours whom we accepted as something historically fixed which we could not change; He was born of a Mother whom He chose before He was born. It is the only instance in history where both the son willed the Mother and the Mother willed the Son. And this is what the Creed means: “Born of the Virgin Mary”. She was called by God as Aaron was, and Our Lord was born not just of her flesh but even by her consent.
God never does anything without exceeding preparation. The two great masterpieces of God are Creation of man and re-creation or Redemption of Man. Creation was made for unfallen men; His Mystical Body for fallen men. When man willed not to have blessings except according to his lower nature, and rebelled against heaven, God planned on remaking or redeeming man.
As Eden was the Paradise of Creation, Mary is the Paradise of the Incarnation, and in her as a Garden was celebrated the first nuptials of God and man. This purity we will call the Immaculate Conception.
It is not the Virgin Birth, The word “immaculate” is taken from two latin words meaning “not stained” “Conception” means that at the first moment of her conception, the Blessed Mother in the womb of her mother St. Anne, in virtue of the anticipated merits of the Redemption of her Son, was preserved free from the stains of original sin. I never could see why anyone in this day and age objects to the Immaculate Conception, because all modern pagans believe that they are immaculately conceived. If there is no original sin, then everyone is immaculately conceived. Why do they shrink from allowing to Mary what they attribute to themselves?
The Immaculate Conception in no way means that Mary needed no redemption. She did! Mary is the first effect of redemption, in the sense that it was applied to her at the moment of her conception and to us in another and diminished fashion only after our birth. She had this privilege not for her sake, but for His sake. She is the blueprint of love whom God loved before the world was made, she who is the Immaculate Virgin, Mother of God. With each of you, too, I confess: She is the Woman I love! God love you!”
Our Lady of Lourdes pray for us! St. Bernadette, pray for us!
Bernadette Porter is a Traditional Catholic, a wife of 41 years with 6 adult home-schooled children and 5 grandchildren. A sincere devotion to Mary, the Mother of God leads me to want to share "The Church's best kept secret" - Mary!