Did you know that “The Miraculous Medal” was originally known as the “Medal of the Immaculate Conception” but because of the many miracles that were occurring, the medal became known as “The Miraculous Medal”.
In the year 1830, in Paris, France, Our Lady appeared to St. Catherine Laboure. The Lady spoke, "My child, the good God wishes to entrust to you a mission." She told Catherine that she would have to endure trials in carrying out the mission, but she would have consolation in knowing that she was working for the glory of God.
The Lady continued, "The times are evil. Sorrows will come upon France; the throne will be overthrown. The Cross will be thrown down and trampled. The Archbishop will be stripped of his clothes. Blood will flow in the streets. The side of Our Lord will be pierced anew. The whole world will be afflicted with tribulations." The Virgin appeared sad and could hardly speak as she said this. But as if giving a remedy, she pointed toward the foot of the altar and said, "Come to the foot of the altar. Here graces will be shed on all who ask for them. Graces will be shed especially on those who ask for them."
The mission that God wanted to entrust to Catherine was made manifest to her on November 27, 1830. It was the mission of making and distributing the Medal of the Immaculate Conception, now known as the Miraculous Medal.
Around the oval frame of the medal we read the words, "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you." In this brief prayer we find the truth of (a) the Immaculate Conception of Mary, and (b) Mary’s intercessory power with God for us who ask for her aid.
On the reverse side of the Medal we see a Cross, the symbol of Christ’s Redeeming Sacrifice on Mount Calvary for the salvation of the world. At the base of the Cross is a bar, which symbolizes the foot of the Cross. Intertwined with the bar is the letter "M" symbolizing the Mary’s intimate involvement at the foot of the Cross with her Son’s Redemptive Sacrifice. Since the Cross is the symbol of Christ’s Redemptive Sacrifice, we can also see a Eucharistic symbolism on the Medal. In all of the approved apparitions of Our Lady there is a Eucharistic thrust. She usually asked for a church to be built, in which the Eucharistic Sacrifice and the Blessed Sacrament always have prime place. Mary always leads us to Jesus, and Jesus is especially present in the Eucharist. The two Hearts are surmounted by flames, symbolizing the burning love with which Jesus and Mary accomplished the work of Redemption, each in their proper way.
Catherine heard the voice telling her, "Have a medal struck after this model. All who wear it will receive great graces. They should wear it around the neck. Graces will abound for persons who wear it with confidence." Many miracles have occurred since Our Lady gave us this great help. By wearing it, we are asking Her to watch over us and to lead us to Jesus truly present in the Blessed Sacrament and away from our present sins.
November 27th is the Feast of the Miraculous Medal. May we again turn to Our Lady during these trying times and place blessed medals on our loved ones. Maybe we could distribute them as gifts during this Christmas season.
Hello Everyone - This Tuesday, November 21st, we celebrate the great Feast Day of Mary's Presentation in the Temple.
Mary, at the age of three,in the presence of her mother, St. Anne and father, St. Joachim, presented Herself in the temple to God. She gave Herself entirely to Him. She thought only of loving and pleasing Him by being perfectly united to His Holy Will. Can you imagine if everyone God created did the exact same thing – what a world we would be living in? Maybe someone should write a “fiction” book about it, titled, “Heaven on Earth”. The truth of the matter is, we do have a free will and we could have done the same thing but our original sin and concupiscence got in the way of such a heroic deed. Of course, we do have throughout all of history many saints who have come close. We have saints who at a young age gave themselves to God in a quick and sure way, knowing that God is everything and that nothing else matters. We also have saints who did not figure it out until much later. Look at St. Augustine who lived a life of leisure until later in life when he made the statement: “Our hearts are restless until they rest in you, O God!” How many of us each day try to find our Heaven on earth without God even though we know – God can only give us this peace and love that we are all searching for.
We may rationalize our actions by stating, “O, he was a saint and I am not.” Or “Of course Our Lady did that – She had no sin on Her soul!” The truth of the matter is, God has given us everything we need to be saints. His Sacred Heart has enough treasures held within it that it is depicted as flames coming from His Human Heart. It is known as the Furnace of Charity! Our Lord has come to many saints telling them to ask for the graces that no one asks for because He is hungering to give them to us. St. Francis de Sales says that we are not saints because we do not want to be. Once a person has desired to be a saint and has prayed for the graces to be that saint, God answers this prayer with the condition that we persevere in prayer. Our Lady is eager to answer as well. There is a warning with this prayer though. In order to fill your soul with these graces, there must be room. If you do not make room yourself by taking the weeds from the garden of your soul, then Our Lady will have to do it for you. She will send trials to come your way in order to purify that soul in answer to your prayer. When the trials come, know that if we surrender to God’s Will and accept this purification, the room will be made for grace and virtue to flourish. If we resist and resist, then the process will be slow until we learn to surrender like a child in the arms of a tender Mother who knows what is best for that child.
What has been just described is what our Consecration to the Immaculate Heart can do for us. Being the Mother of Jesus, She has a special right to all the gifts of Her Son. The Church teaches that She is the Mother of all Graces. She distributes them to Her children.
Therefore, let us give ourselves to Our Mother so that She may teach us the sure way of surrender to the Will of the Father. Let us ask Her to teach us how to give of ourselves completely to God in love and service. Let us meditate on the greatness of Mary’s love and service during the years She spent in the Temple always increasing day by day in Her resplendent virtues and graces.
As Mary presented and offered Herself to God in the temple with promptitude and without reserve, so let us also present ourselves this day to Mary without delay and without reserve; and let us ask Her to offer us to God, who will not reject us when He sees us presented by the hand of our Queen and Mother, who is the living temple of the Holy Spirit, the delight of Her Lord and the chosen Mother of the Eternal Word. May we not forget to offer prayers of thanksgiving to our Eternal Father for this great Mother and Queen!
Thank you Eternal Father, Son and Holy Spirit for the great gift of our Queen and Mother!
Without the Eucharist, the priesthood is meaningless. Separated from the Eucharist, priests become agents of Satan. Either they are for Him or against Him; there are no in betweens. Jesus affirms this: “He who is not with Me is against Me.” (Mt. 12:30) Moreover, Jesus says: “If you are neither hot nor cold, I will vomit you out of My mouth”. (Rev. 3:16)
What should we do so that priests can once again be agents of God who will lead millions of souls to Heaven?
There is an urgent call for priests to return to the Eucharist as the center of their lives. Weakened by the onslaught of so many temptations today, they need someone to help them and those who can help them are victim souls.
A victim soul is someone commissioned by Jesus, the Redeemer, to collaborate with Him in prayer and penance to liberate people from the bondage of satan and to reconcile them to God. At Fatima, our Blessed Mother said, “ Many souls go to hell because few pray and do penance for them”. The Angel that appeared before Our Lady at Fatima gave the children prayers of reparation. These were prayers of Eucharistic Reparation. We can contribute to this reparation by daily remembering to offer up these prayers along with our daily duty.
In the message of our Lord to Sr. Maria Auxilia de la Cruz, which is highly recommended and approved by the Primate of Mexico, Cardinal Ernesto Corripio Ahumada, the Lord said:
“There is an increasing need for souls who might be guides for other souls in the world; that is, there is a need for wise and holy priests who are capable of guiding others along the path of grace. But, my little victim soul, there are too few priests who are forgetful of themselves, untiring and zealous in seeking the glory of God.
Oh, how we need those who really enjoy living with their Eucharistic King. How few dedicate their time to the salvation of souls! And, yet, they ought to be veritable victim souls for Me, each one a true “Alter-Christus”. I thirst for Eucharistic priests; I long for them with infinite desire.
The world will not improve until My priests come to realize that they ought to live in Me, for Me, and with Me, and, having realized this, they live according to the desires of My Heart. As long as priests fail to penetrate the depths of My Eucharistic Life, there is no remedy for the world.
When priests become fully aware of what it means to be a priest, when they realize that they were made for the Eucharist, that they ought to be My living hosts through which I can reach My people, then and only then will there be salvation for the world. Then there will be Eucharistic guides, who will be able to say, “I am The Way for Christ lives in me.”
Only then will the crowds follow them just as they followed Me in Galilee; then the work of Redemption will have abundant fruit; then My Father will be glorified and My loving Heart will find consolation and the world will be saved.
But listen once more My beloved child, this is the last secret. I shall impart to you today. I have just told you that the world will not be saved until My priests make the Eucharist the center of their lives; well, in My infinite wisdom I have decided that this grace of living a truly Eucharistic life can be obtained for My anointed priests only through a legion of little souls destined to be My victim souls; they will serve as a means of grace for My priests. Through the immolation of these little victim souls I will give Myself in a special way to My priests and I will reveal to them the secrets of a Eucharistic life.
Just as at another moment in history the redemption of mankind depended upon the fiat of My Immaculate Mother so, up to a certain point, the restoration of humanity depends upon the generous acceptance by these victim souls of their sacred mission.
Would you like to be one of those victim souls, coredemptors? You, My beloved spouse, are one of those chosen souls. I ask you once again, “Do you want to be My little victim soul? The Motto, “Only God” means in practice, “Not I but He,” [Taken from Broken Bread, p. 19-21]
Victim souls are daughters of Mary because Mary is the first victim soul who produced the Host-Jesus and who produces unceasingly hundreds of thousands of victim souls who will populate this earth. Since the Incarnation, Mary is the Mother of victim souls in a most singular manner. She is the Mother who sees only Jesus in these souls and loves them with the same incomprehensible love with which she loves Her Son. Mary desires that these souls multiply and inundate the earth until it becomes a huge tabernacle filled with “living hosts” in whom Christ is present in each one without losing His absolute unity. Mary desires this and is disposed to all this in order to obtain the Father’s glory.
Victim souls ought to remember that they are called to be Jesus but since Jesus was formed in the immaculate womb of Mary, they cannot nor will they be formed by the Holy Spirit other than in this same pure womb of their heavenly Mother. She is the model in which these “hosts” are formed, the ciborium which contains them, the tabernacle in which they are hidden, and above all, the receptacle into which they are emptied, so that they may become perfect “hosts”. For only by being another “Mary” for Jesus will they be capable of being transformed.
THE LOVE ONE SHOULD HAVE FOR MARY
The love for Mary in a soul is a special sign of predestination. No one who loves Mary is lost. Filial love is tender, confiding and generous. The soul ought to bear in mind that if the soul is Jesus for the Father, the soul is also Jesus for Mary. The soul ought to love Mary with the same love with which Jesus loves her. We shall never be able to love Mary as Her Son loves Her. For this reason, we can love Her and desire to love Her without measure, knowing that we shall never love Her enough. The souls should see in Mary, her Mother, teacher and guide. It is a happy subjection to Mary which will make her another Jesus.
Purgatory and Our Lady
St. Francis de Sales, Doctor of the Church, says there are two invincible proofs of Purgatory. The first:- there are sins which are light in comparison with others, and which do not make man guilty of hell. If then a man die in them, what will become of him? Paradise receives nothing defiled (Apoc. xxi): hell is too extreme a penalty, therefore if it is not deserved by one’s own sins, it must then be understood that he will stay in a Purgatory, where he will be duly purified, and afterwards go to Heaven. When his soul is purged, he will go to Heaven, to be with the blessed. Of these sins the Wise Man speaks (Prov xxiv.): The just shall fall seven times a day: for the just cannot sin, so long as he is just, with a sin which deserves damnation: it means then that he falls into sins to which damnation is not due, which Catholics call venial, and these can be purged away in the other world in Purgatory.
The second reason is, that after the pardon of sin there remains part of the penalty due to it. As for example, in the 2nd of Kings, chap. xii., the sin is forgiven to David, the Prophet saying to him: The Lord hath also taken away thy sin: not thou shalt not die. Nevertheless, because thou hast given occasion to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme for this thing, thy child shall die the death.
Purgatory is a great mercy of God and we are called to share in that mercy. We believe that we can help those in this purgative state. In St. Luke, in the 16th chapter, it is written Make unto yourselves friends of the mammon of iniquity, that when you shall fail they may receive you into eternal tabernacles. To fail, what is it but to die? -and the friends, who are they but the Saints? The interpreters all understand that the departed can be helped by the Saints. For in what other way can one understand these words: make to yourselves friends who may receive you? They cannot be understood of alms, for many times the alms is good and holy and yet acquires us not friends who can receive us into eternal tabernacles, as when it is given to bad people with a holy and right intention.
We maintain, then, that we may pray for the faithful departed, and that the prayers and good works of the living greatly relieve them and are profitable to them. For this reason, all those who die in the grace of God, and consequently in the number of the elect, do not go to Paradise at the very first moment, but many go to Purgatory, where they suffer a temporal punishment, from which our prayers and good works can help and serve to deliver them.
Whose prayers and good works are the most efficacious? Our Queen and Mother is the most powerful intercessor for the souls in Purgatory. How dear these precious children must be to Our Queen and Mother – Mary. Some saints tell us that She Herself visits them in their place of suffering. This must, indeed, comfort them. What great joy to see Mary and the maternal light of love in Her eyes. She comes to comfort them but it also likewise adds to their pain by causing them such grief when She must leave them and they cannot follow. Imagine the joy when the day finally comes when She takes that soul with Her back to Paradise!
Saint Peter Damian, Saint Ildefonse, and Saint Frances of Rome assure us that it is the feast of the Assumption of Mary (Aug 15) on which the most souls are released from Purgatory each year. Moreover, her role is especially confirmed by the Catholic Church’s teaching regarding the Brown Scapular given by Mary to Saint Simon Stock in 1251. Enrollment in the Brown Scapular and faithful living will draw graces from Mary in this life as well as the next. She will constantly keep watch over souls and lead them to Her Son. She delivers all those who faithfully wear Her Scapular from Purgatory.
Saint Teresa received a vision in which the souls in Purgatory received a spray of cool water whenever the Holy Rosary is prayed for them. Saint Alphonsus Liguori, also a Doctor of the Church, confirmed that praying the Rosary is a great means to bring relief to souls in Purgatory. Saint Pio, when giving a Rosary to someone said, “Let us empty Purgatory.”
Mary has a special and tender place in Her Heart for those who suffer most. Let us rely on our sweet and stainless Mother as an intercessor for our brothers and sisters being purified for the eternal happiness of Heaven. Let us say our Rosaries for those who have gone before us so that they may reach Paradise and in turn ask Our Mother and Queen to help us here on earth to reach our goal – Heaven!
Bernadette Porter is a Traditional Catholic, a wife of 41 years with 6 adult home-schooled children and 6 grandchildren. A sincere devotion to Mary, the Mother of God leads me to want to share "The Church's best kept secret" - Mary!