I am writing each day on the Scapular during this Novena to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. I missed yesterday because I care for my Dad twice a week in between Visiting Angels to be sure all is taken care of. He is 87 - please say a prayer for him (Bernard)! Thanks! This post is under talks because I feel it is frequented by more viewers than the other. I feel this is important - If the modernists do away with St. Simon - then it is easy to do away with the vision and the Scapular all together. Nice plot of Satan! The sad part is that he has wormed his way into the Order and this dictate is from the Carmelite friars themselves - Very very sad!
Today, we are going to touch on a touchy subject - St. Simon Stock. He was revered for centuries by the Church as the one who received the Scapular and its Promise at the hands of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. According to what is written - he was an amazing saint with incredible mystical gifts. According to the modern skeptical, well learned, updated, smarter than the last 700 year Carmelite friars - he could be a fraud and was taken from the calendar (even though we have history and his remains). How Satan has weaseled his way into the most incredible places of the Church - I think at this moment there is no stone that can be picked up where you will not see his worms. VERY VERY SAD! We need a renewal and for the most part, we are seeing it. The Roman Catholic Church will not die! Satan may have been given "his hour" to destroy it but his hour is coming to a close and we will see a renewal - thanks be to God!
I have been taking informative talks given by Carmelite priests in the book "Take This Scapular". Today we will quote Father Jo Pacquin, T.O. Carm. from pages 8-15. This is all about St. Simon and as you can see from the number of pages - very lengthy. We will not cover all of it but some of it.
Fr. Pacquin begins by comparing St. Simon and his past to that of St. Joseph, spouse of the Virgin Mary. Very significant persons but very obscure in the writings of the Church. This is a good comparison although no one compares to St. Joseph. The common elements are: Our Lady, the holiness of these men and how Satan wants to keep them from us!
He begins: "The date of his birth is about the year 1165 (no specific). His parents belonged to the English nobility of Hartford, in the County of Kent. The saint's father was Lord of Kent. As a boy.. he felt the call to do God's work (and like St. Francis of Assisi) left his nobility to seek a life of solitude with God. He withdrew into a deserted spot where he hid himself in the hollow of an oak tree. (Note: this sounds crazy but it was common in those days as the trees were large and it was a simple easy hermitage to live in - He lived a rigorous life like St. John the Baptist and all those who chose to be hermits - living very meagerly) At the age of 47, he entered Carmel which came to Kent in 1212 and he was sent to Mt. Carmel in the Holy Land where he was instructed in the tradition of the Order and continued his life of penance and prayer near the summit of the Holy Mountain.
In the year 1244, the Muslim Saracens from the Caspian See, together with the Sultan of Egypt, defeated the army of the Crusaders at Gaza. They captured Jerusalem and marched through Samaria and Galilee destroying all the villages.
Blessed Alan the Breton, Prior General at Mount Carmel, sailed for Europe with those that wanted to sail with him and started a General Chapter in Aylesford, England in 1245. St. Simon soon was elected to replace him in time. England was now the ruling center of the Order. St. Simon began to establish priories near the great universities so that all the Brethren could attend. Before his death, houses were established at Cambridge, Oxford, Cologne, Paris, Bologna, Montpellier, Toulouse, Louvain, besides the establishments in Hulne, Norfold, London, York, Norwich, Brussels, Malines, Bruges, Ypres, Haarlem Liege, Bopard, Venice, Pisa, Genoa, and Frankford-on-the Main. (Note: places of great learning were all Catholic - mainly to educated the priests who in turn would educated the people) Undoubtedly, his success was due to his holiness and the overpowering devotion he had for Our Blessed Lady, and to her corresponding help.
Even in those days, the bishops and clergy thought that Carmel should be suppressed because of its growth and influence. His companion and secretary, Father Peter Swanyngton wrote: "Blessed Simon, weighted down with old age, enfeebled by rigorous penance, and bearing in his heart the troubles of all the brethren, used to pray without ceasing throughout the night even to the dawn. While he was praying, consolation came to him from Heaven, which he related to us at our assembly as follows:
"Dearest brethren: Blessed be God Who does not abandon those who trust in Him and does not spurn the prayers of His servants; Blessed be also the most Holy Mother of Our Lord Jesus Christ who, mindful of ancient days and the tribulations which have befallen many of you; sends you a message which you will receive with joy in the Holy Spirit. May He guide me that I may make it known as it behooves me to speak... While I was pouring out my soul in the sight of the Lord though I am but dust and ashes, and while I was beseeching with all confidence my Lady, the Virgin Mary, that as she willed to call us her Brothers, so she would show herself a Mother, snatch us from temptation, and by some sign of grace, recommend us to those who are persecuting us: while saying to her with sighs: "Flower of Carmel, blossoming vine, splendor of Heaven, Child-bearing Virgin none like to Thee; Mother mild, whom no man dist know, upon thy Carmelites privileges bestow, Star of the Sea:
She appeared to me with a great company, and holding the Habit of the Order, said, THIS WILL BE FOR YOU AND FOR ALL CARMELITES A PRIVILEGE; HE WHO DIES IN THIS WILL NOT SUFFER ETERNAL FIRE. And because her glorious presence delighted me beyond measure and I, miserable one, could not withstand her majesty, she disappeared, saying that I should send to the Lord Innocent, the Vicar of Her Blessed Son, who would grant us a remedy for our troubles.
"Brethren, store up this message in your hearts, strive to make your election sure by good works and never be found wanting; watch in thanksgiving for so great a mercy, pray without ceasing that the word made known to me may redound to the praise of the Most Holy Trinity, the Father, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the ever Blessed Virgin Mary."
The Breviary recounts how; "To the burden of his dignity, he added more frequent vigils, more abundant tears, and rougher hair shirts. He was kindly towards others; but, more severe than ever toward himself, he chastised his body by ever new forms of punishment." Further, we learn that public testimony was given to his holiness of life, when "in the spirit of prophecy, he foretold many future events and cured hitherto incurable diseases. When his brother, to tempt him to break the fast, offered him some cooked fishes, he raised his eyes to heaven and restored the fishes to life. By the sign of the Cross he turned water into wine, thus overcoming the trickery of the demon who, while the Saint was saying Mass, had cunningly carried off the wine which had been prepared in the cruets..."
Around the 100th year of his life, Simon left the Motherhouse at Aylesford, England, for the General Chapter to be held at Toulouse in France. When he and his companions arrived at Bordeaux, the Saint could not continue the journey. Hearing of his sickness, Carmelites from all over Europe were attracted to Bordeaux. St. Simon died, surrounded by his family in the Order of Carmel, on the sixteenth of May, 1265. He was buried in France but it was a blessing because of the persecutions in England - who knows what may have happened to his body - had it been sent back. It has since been returned to Aylesford, England where pilgrimages occur.
FOR CENTURIES - Satan has made attacks on this Scapular and this saint -- all for good reason - Our Lady has blessed them with Her favor! It is God's Will that the humility of Our Lady will crush the head of the proud serpent - until he is crushed - He will launch every attack on Her. May we be aware of this and defeat him and defend Her - Our Queen and Mother! May we promote Her Scapular and pray to St. Simon Stock - especially today!!
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Bernadette Porter is a Traditional Catholic, a wife of 42 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!