Heaven Helps Us Get To Heaven
I have pointed out in the last two Newsletter’s the dangers of sin and how the denial of sin is the worst sin of all. I also showed that most people go to Hell in spite of the fact that God makes it so easy to go to Heaven even for the greatest sinners. Down through the ages God has even made it easier to get to Heaven with special privileges and indulgences.
Many of these have come from Our Lady for individuals, Nations, and
Religious Orders. Those that did not address individuals I will not talk about
here: like Our Lady of Soufanieh for the Church, Our Lady of Nicaragua for that
nation, Tre Fountain for the conversion of
Protestants, and parts of Fatima for the conversion of
The most important of these are “The Five First Saturdays”, The Brown Scapular, The Rosary, The Seven Sorrows, The Miraculous Medal, and Church Indulgences.
The Five First Saturdays
The greatest personal help to get to Heaven from Our Lady that first
This is a guarantee of Heaven. See below!
This is why this is my most beloved devotion. But let us be sure we do it correctly. First and most important we must offer all these things in reparation for sins against the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
In 1930 Jesus appeared to Lucia. He said that:
"The reason for five - 1st Saturdays is the five blasphemies against Her Immaculate Conception, Heart , against 1.Her perpetual virginity, 2. Her divine maternity of God and mankind, 3. indifference and 4. even hatred to Her and 5. insult Her Holy Images.
In 1925 on Dec 10th Lucia saw a
vision of Our Lady and the
"Have compassion on the Heart of your Most Holy Mother, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce Her at every moment, without there being anyone to make an act of reparation in order to take them away."
Then Mary said,
"See, My daughter, My Heart surrounded by thorns which ungrateful men pierce at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. You, at least, try to console Me and say to all those who, for five months, on the first Saturday,
1. Confess, 2. Receive Holy Communion, 3. Recite the Rosary, 4. And keep Me company during fifteen minutes while meditating on the 15 mysteries of the Rosary, in a spirit of reparation.
I promise to assist them at the hour of death with all the graces necessary for the salvation of their souls."
For more detains see http://www.unitypublishing.com/Apparitions/FatimaBook.html
The Brown Scapular
into Europe, the Carmelites were hermits living on Mount Carmel in
Because of the
Saracen invasion, they were forced to leave
It was in
By 1251, St. Simon realized that Our Lady was his only hope. With tears in eyes, he saluted her as the Flower of Carmel and the Star of the Sea. He prayed fervently for her "privilegium". The special protection a Lord gave to his vassals. The Lord would protect his life and property, in return for the loyalty of the one making the request.
In the 13th century there was no commerce or industry. Land was the only means of a livelyhood. The vassals paid homage to the Lord of the land. The Lords owned the land and by this act of homage the vassal was given the right to till the land. He was guaranteed the protection of the Lord.
was not something new to medieval
Faith and actual living were one in the middle ages. The monk presented himself to God, His Divine Master, just as a vassal presented himself to his lord 'to pay homage.' So too, did the friar make his vows to God.
As we have seen the idea of the scapular and the giving of yourself to another for protection was not a novel idea. Our Lady choose that which was traditional and widely practiced.
While praying, Our Lady appeared to St. Simon Stock, giving him the Brown Scapular saying to him:
"Receive, my beloved son, this habit of thy order: This shall be to thee and to all Carmelites a privilege, that whosoever dies clothed in this shall never suffer eternal fire"
After Our Lady appeared to Saint Simon, almost immediately a miraculous change took place in the Order. The order was saved, its Marian character confirmed and Mary became more a Mother than a Queen to it. In the beginning only the Carmelites wore the scapular. But by the 14th century the privilege of wearing the scapular extended outside the order. Lay groups and third orders were formed. Some of these groups were called confraternities.
Still Our Lady
continued to favor the Carmelite Order and her scapular with further blessings
and promises. In 1321, St. Peter Thomas was told by Our Heavenly Mother that
'the Order of Carmel is destined to exist until the end of the world'. On March
3, 1322 an even greater favor was conferred. On this date Pope
"I, the Mother of Grace, shall descend into purgatory on the Saturday after their death and bring into heaven all confraternity members I find in purgatory."
All who are enrolled in the Brown Scapular belong to the Confraternity.
But what is the meaning of the brown scapular? We cannot wear her scapular and live a sinful life. Our Lady's promise means at the hour of death we will receive the grace of final perseverance or the grace of final contrition. St. Alphonsus tells of the prostitute who heard of the scapular promise and wore it but continued in her life of sin. Years later as she lay dying, sick in a hospital, and all alone, she thought of her life and looked at her scapular. She called for a nurse and cried out: 'take off this scapular for surely the torments and fires of hell could not be worse than the pain it is causing me.' The nurse took off the scapular and the woman immediately died in her sins. Our Lady will not be mocked!
I experienced a similar story in the death of my mother. My sister gave her a bath on her death bed but forgot to put her scapular back on. I saw this and gave her mine and moments after she died.
The Rosary goes back to the first century and was made into its present form in the Seventh Century but it fell into misuse until the Thirteenth Century so we will start from there.
In the last
seven hundred years there have been three great rosary victories. In the year
1214, Our Lady appeared to Saint Dominic, giving him her Holy Rosary. She told
him by propagating devotion to her rosary, he would defeat the Albinginsian Heresy that was flourishing in
victory was in 1571, when all of
One hundred and
twelve years later, in 1683, the Turkish forces again threatened to overrun
Of that battle,
there was a fourth rosary victory! It took place January 8, 1815 in New Orleans, when General Jackson (later
President Jackson) publicly acknowledged victory over the British forces due to
the prayers of the women, children and Holy nuns in
Of all the Holy Fathers who have spoken out on the Rosary, by far, the greatest advocate and spokesman, was Pope Leo XIII. He reigned from 1878-1903 one of the longest reigning Popes in the History of the Church. He wrote 13 encyclicals on the rosary. His encyclicals completely explained the rosary, making them in reality a complete study of Mary and her rosary.
The first encyclical, announced in 1883, he asked the entire world to pray the rosary everyday during the month of October. He later made it a decree. He made it known that the month of October, be known as the month of the Holy Rosary. It was because of him that we have the beautiful invocation, "Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, Pray for us!"
The first encyclical, entitled Efficacy of the Holy Rosary in History, Pope Leo XIII stated: "When the Church was detached and menaced by all sorts of evils to whom did the Church have recourse? To the protection of the sublime Mother of God, the Sovereign depository of all hope and the dispenser of all graces." He immediately granted various plenary and partial indulgences to the recitation of the rosary.
22, 1891, his fourth encyclical entitled, (Octobri Mense) the Month of October, he pointed out the evils which
the Church was suffering and the attacks made on her. He showed that the many
souls are lost by apostasy, religious indifference, and a luke-warm attitude.
This is exactly what is going on today! The Pope stated: "May it be
affirmed, that by the will of God, Mary is the intermediary through whom is distributed of God's mercy; for grace and truth come
In his encyclical, Laetitiae Sanctae, he gave us three causes that are destroying society. He meant society of his time, but they apply to today! The distaste for a simple, humble, and laborious life. A repugnance for everything that causes suffering and forget fullness of the future life. He gave us the mysteries of the rosary as the solution to these problems. That is when we pray the joyful mysteries it is for the distaste for the simple, humble and laborious life. The sorrowful mysteries are a remedy for the repugnance for everything that causes suffering. The Glorious mysteries for the forgetfulness of the future life.
In 1893, five
encyclicals were written by this Holy Father. In the encyclical entitled,
"Always Joy," (Incunda Semper)
he referred to Mary as the Mediatrix of Divine Grace,
Co-Redemptrix and Queen of Heaven and the universe.
It was in the encyclical entitled, "Mary the Help of all People," (Adiutricem Populi) he showed that
the rosary was the means of reuniting the Eastern Orthodox Churches with
In 1896, he was
about sixty years ahead of his time, when he advocated the Family Rosary.
'This sweet memory of our young years has never left us with the passing of time, nor has it weakened. It has, indeed, helped-and we say this with confidence-to make the Holy Rosary very dear to our soul; and we never fail to recite it in its entirety every day as an act of Marian piety which, above all, we desire to perform with particular fervor in the month of October." He prayed the joyful mysteries in the morning, the sorrowful in the afternoon, and glorious in the evening which is Papal household.
Throughout the history of the Church, the popes have all spoken out in favor of the rosary. Pope Gregory XIII said, "The Rosary is the means of appeasing God's anger and of imploring Our Lady's intercession."
Pope Saint Pius V, "It gives us the spiritual peace and consolation we need."
Pope Adrain VI called it, "The Scourge of the devils!" Pope Paul VI referred to it as the treasure of grace. Pope Saint Pius X, the first canonized pope in 500 years said, "Give one million families praying the rosary everyday and the World is saved."
Pope Saint Pius
X added, "Give me an army praying
the Rosary. I will conquer the world." He later stated, "After the Mass, there is no prayer that is
more efficacious than the Holy Rosary." Our present Holy Father, Pope
Louis Kaczmarek, author of three books and custodian of the International Pilgrim Virgin Statue of Our Lady of Fatima for 20 years, in one of his many lectures illustrated just how powerful the Rosary really is! From 1939-1945, World War II almost destroyed the world. And he showed how many battles were won in the feasts of Our Lady.
See http://www.unitypublishing.com/Apparitions/DoorTheHolyRosary.html for this list.
The Miraculous Medal
Because of the doctrine verified at Rue du Bac by Our Lady I expect all my prayers to go through the hands of Our Lady where she cleans them up, adds Her prayers to them, and presents them to God. I also expect all the graces coming from God to go first through the hands of Our Lady, as the dispenser of all grace. This is a doctrine hard for both Catholics and non-Catholics to accept.
It is expressed
well in the vision of Lucia in
This is the story and power of this doctrine.
Medal, also known as the Medal of the Immaculate Conception, is a medal created by
Saint Catherine Labouré
following a vision of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Saint Catherine Labouré
stated that on the night of July 18, 1830, she awoke upon hearing a voice of a
child calling her to the sisters' chapel (located in the Rue
du Bac, Paris), where she heard the Blessed Virgin
Mary say to her, "God wishes to charge you with a mission. You will be
contradicted, but do not fear; you will have the grace to do what is necessary.
Tell your spiritual director all that passes within you. Times are evil in
On November 27,
One of the most
remarkable facts recorded in connection with the Miraculous Medal is the
conversion of a Jew, Marie-Alphonse Ratisbonne
who had resisted the appeals of a friend to enter the Church. Alphonse Ratisbonne consented, somewhat reluctantly, to wear the
medal, and being in
The chapel in which Saint
Pope John Paul II used a slight variation of the reverse image as his coat of arms, the Marian Cross, a plain cross with an M underneath the right-hand bar (which signified the Blessed Virgin at the foot of the Cross when Jesus was being crucified).
Not even the
other nuns in the convent knew who the seer was until after the death of
The Seven Sorrows
Virgin Mary grants seven graces to the souls who honor her daily by saying seven
Hail Mary's and meditating on her tears and dolours.
This devotion was passed on by St.
1. I will grant peace to their families.
2. They will be enlightened about the divine mysteries.
3. I will console them in their pains and I will accompany them in their work.
4. I will give them as much as they ask for as long as it does not oppose the adorable Will of my Divine Son or the sanctification of their souls.
5. I will defend them in their spiritual battles with the infernal enemy and I will protect them at every instant of their lives.
6. I will visibly help them at the moment of their death, they will see the face of their mother.
7. I have obtained (this grace) from my Divine Son, that those who propagate this devotion to my tears and dolours, will be taken directly from this earthly life to eternal happiness since all their sins will be forgiven and my Son and I will be their eternal consolation and joy.
The Catholic Church is able to grant indulgences because she draws on
the infinite merits of
Enchiridion of Indulgences (1968)
Kinds of Indulgences
Plenary indulgences: The word "plenary" means "full," so a plenary indulgence takes away all the punishment due to our sins.
Partial indulgences: A partial indulgence takes away part of the punishment due to our sins.
Some Indulgenced Prayers and Actions
- "A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful who, in the performance of their duties and in bearing the trials of life, raise their mind with humble confidence to God, adding - even if only mentally - some pious invocation." (i.e. "Holy Mary, pray for us", etc.)
- "A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful, who, in a spirit of faith and mercy give of themselves or of their goods to serve their brothers in need."
- "A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful, who in a spirit of penance voluntarily deprive themselves of what is licit and pleasing to them."
- A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful who witness to their faith in a non-Catholic environment (this can even be something so simple as saying grace in a restaurant!)
Various indulgenced prayers
- Rosary, (plenary indulgence if recited in church, or with a group or family; partial indulgence in other circumstances)
- Stations of the Cross, Nicene Creed, (plenary)
- Litany of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or the Litany of All Saints (partial)
- "Hail Holy Queen," "Apostles' Creed," Sign of the Cross, Prayer for vocations to the religious life and the priesthood(partial)
Various indulgenced actions
- A visit to a cemetery with prayer for the dead (plenary from 1st to 8th November, partial all other days. This indulgence is given to the Souls in Purgatory).
- A visit to adore the Blessed Sacrament (partial; plenary for a visit lasting more than half an hour)
- Reading the Holy Bible (partial; plenary for over half an hour)
- Teaching or learning
- Spending at least three days in a retreat (plenary)
- Participating in the Adoration of the Cross during the Good Friday liturgy, and devoutly kissing the cross (plenary)
- Renewal of one's baptismal promises (partial; plenary if the renewal is made on the Vigil of Easter or on the anniversary of one's baptism