It was almost 15 years ago. I was At Old St. Mary’s here in D.C. celebrating Mass in the Latin (Extraordinary Form). It was a solemn high Mass. I don’t suppose I thought it any different than most Sunday’s but something quite amazing was about to happen.
As you may know the ancient Latin Mass is celebrated “ad orientem” (towards the Liturgical East). Priest and people all face one direction. What this means practically for the celebrant is that the people are behind him. It was time for the consecration. The priest is directed to bow low, his forearms on the altar table the host between his fingers.
As directed I said the venerable words of Consecration in a low but distinct voice, Hoc est enim Corpus meum (For this is my Body). The bells rang as I genuflected.
But behind me a disturbance of some sort, a shaking or rustling in the front pews behind me to my right. And then a moaning or grumbling. What was that? It did not really sound human, more like the grumbling of a large animal such as a boar or a bear, along with a plaintive moan that did not seem human. I elevated the host and wondered, “What was that?” Then silence. I could not turn to look easily for that is awkward for the celebrant in the ancient Latin Mass. But still I thought, What was that?
But it was time for the consecration of the chalice. Again, bowing low and pronouncing clearly and distinctly but in a low voice: Hic est enim calix sanguinis mei, novi et æterni testamenti; mysterium fidei; qui pro vobis et pro multis effundetur in remissionem pecatorum. Haec quotiescumque feceritis in mei memoriam facietis (for this is the cup of my Blood, of the new and eternal covenant; the mystery of faith; which will for the many be shed unto the remission of sins. When so ever you do this, you do it in my memory).
Then, I heard another sound this time an undeniable moan and then a shriek as some one cried out: “Leave me alone Jesus! Why do you torture me!” Suddenly a scuffling as some one ran out with the groaning sound of having been injured. The back doors swung open, then closed. Then silence.
Realization – I could not turn to look for I was raising the Chalice high over my head. But I knew in an instant that some poor demon-tormented soul had encountered Christ in the Eucharistic, and could not endure his real presence displayed for all to see. And the words of Scripture occurred to me: Even Demons believe and tremble (James 2:19).
Repentance – But just as James used those words to rebuke the weak faith of his flock I too had to repent. Why was a demon-troubled man more aware of the true presence and astonished by it than me? He was moved in the negative sense to run. Why was I not more moved in a positive and comparable way? What of the other believers in the pews? I don’t doubt that any of us believed intellectually in the true presence. But there is something very different and far more wonderful in being moved to the depth of your soul! It is so easy for us to be sleepy in the presence of the Divine, forgetful of the miraculous and awesome Presence available to us.
But let the record show that one day, almost 15 years ago, it was made quite plain to me that I held in my hands the Lord of Glory, the King of heaven and earth, the just Judge, and Ruler of the kings of the earth. Is the Lord truly present in the Eucharist? You’d better believe it, even demons believe that!
82 Replies to “Even Demons Believe and Tremble – A Story about the True Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist”
Praise be the Lord, Msgr. Charles Pope!
I am grateful to you Msgr. Pope, for bringing Christ to us! Thank you, thank you for sharing an extraordinary witness to the Presence of Jesus Christ! JESUS IS PRESENT in our midst! O’ GOD, I Believe, I Praise, I Adore and I Love YOU! I pray for those who do not believe, do not praise, do not adore and do not love YOU!
Your witness inspires my heart and re-ignites the fire of love within to go out and evangelize to all of Gods’ people! PRAISE BE TO JESUS CHRIST and TO GOD BE THE GLORY!!!
Demons do not want to be around Jesus, that is for sure.
Every Knee must bend, even under the earth
i like to share my little story that happened recently as an apostolate. I attended Sunday Mass at my parish church in Singapore, latin rite, in english, and where nobody bothers to kneel when receiving Holy Communion. I made good my preparations before Holy Mass and before receiving Our Lord, kneeling and on the tongue. After Holy Communion, I was recollected in prayer. But there came an angsty, raspy voice from someone in the pew behind mine that repeatedly said, “she is dust!” And intermittently, “what baby?!” i was of course somewhat startled but i continued in prayer, with the thought of how true it is that i am merely dust and my King lets Himself be fed to me. So behold, Our King is coming to us, and we should kneel to receive Him, and on the tongue because it is undoubtedly the best posture, most fitting for the King of kings. And how important it is to receive Him well. My favourite and quickest prayer would be to Mary to help me receive my Lord well. And if time permits, i do an act of reparation for my sins and a spiritual communion. Brethen, how I wish for us all that we would receive our Lord very well. Be encouraged!
Calling it the Extraordinary Form seems unfortunate. Doesn’t the Pope call it the “Gregorian Rite”? Never mind. Whatever one calls it, it is moving and inspiring and majestic and mystical. It engages one to the core – body, blood, soul and wonder. And the respect and reverence accorded the Holy Eucharist is wonderful to behold. Small wonder then that demons would be terrorized in it.
Does anyone else ponder the loss of respect for fellow parishioners evidenced in less than casual attire and socializing in the pews? It isn’t surprising to me that lack of respect in one arena flows into others. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum.
There is indeed a loss of respect, but you must be mistaken about the pope not calling the Tridentine mass the extraordinary form as that name was coined in Benedict’s summorum pontificum.
Yes, that is its official name in the lexicon: “Extraordinary Form”
“Small wonder then that demons would be terrorized in it.”
Hmmmm, it seems clear to me that Msgr. Pope is saying that the demons were terrorized by Christ’s presence in the Mass, not the form of the Mass.
Proponents of the Extraordinary Form will make more friends/converts/fans when they stop hijacking every situation to argue for that form of the rite.
Yes, Agreed, true presence is the point, the Mass is the Mass. I love both forms.
The term “Gregorian Mass” was used by Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos when he was head of Ecclesia Dei. It caused some puzzlement; by 1962 the Roman Rite had undergone considerable development since the time of Pope Gregory the Great. Some claim that the Novus Ordo is a return to the ‘purer’ Gregorian form but this doesn’t hold up under serious scrutiny.
Thoughtful. Remember He is There. I love you Jesus.
sometimes i forget the point. your last sentence floored me in that it is the crux of all things. thank you for writing it.
Msgr. Pope, you did it again. That was a beautiful recounting of a truly miraculous moment for you.
You are truly blessed. Once again there is this favorite video of mine. I save it always and then
some family member gets on the computer and decides I have too many things taking up space and they delete it. I love the song and the pictures and it is saved again to bring up when I need it.
And I know if it is deleted again, you will bring it back to me.
Thanks, and may the pews in your church keep filling up.
Thanks, praise the Lord, may all the pews be filled with grateful returning and new Catholics.
Interesting, amazing,wonderful and yet bitter sweet, the poor soul that is. I pray that he is at peace now and the Holly Spirit replaced the demons
Amen, the story was almost 15 years ago. I pray relief by God’s grace and exorcism, if that was necessary, has come.
I hope whoever that man was is forgiven and joins the Seraphim.
This, amongst many other reasons, is why we need to possess greater reverence when receiving the Lord of Glory in Holy Communion. Ideally on the tongue and kneeling. Not on our freakin’ hands.
I too prefer communion on the tongue and kneeling but wouldn’t call our hands freakin 🙂
our hands are unclean and we are not worthy – by mouth untouched by sin – on knee to show complete reverence to the Almighty!
I remember my old spiritual director (r.i.p.), an exorcist, he told me that during a session of his ministry, hiding the Most Holy Sacrament under his clothes, and entering sacristy occupied with the possessed, the devil sarcastically affirmed, ” So you came with the Patron, hmm?”.
I agree with you Msgr. Pope., if the demons tremble in fear, why don’t we tremble in reverence?
I’ve seen this happen a couple of times at the consecration, the last time during the celebration of the Extraordinary Form. I recall witnessing the same disturbance once during the celebration of the Novus Ordo (Ordinary Form of the mass) as well, and twice during benediction. And it always strengthens the faith of the congregation in reminding everyone of the the True Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. As in the case of Eucharistic Miracles, I think our Lord allows this to remind us ever again that He is truly real and present. Even demons are forced to witness to his truth.
Greetings from Ireland! Wonderful, it really reminds us about the Real Presence, and how sometimes we just go through the Mass half asleep! I will make more effort to be more attentive. Thanks for sharing this with us. Kind regards, Paul.
Thanks for this reminder
Great picture! ..both the word picture and the one at the alter. I’m going to try to go to a high Mass this weekend. It’s high time!
Yes, if you click on the photo it comes up clearer
A stunning and enlightening post, many thanks Mgr.
God sends signs
I too am curious why demons can be moved (to flee), while we sit unmoved. What a great testimony to the real Presence of Christ in the Host.
Well, I suppose fear motivates rather vividly, whereas the moments of a love and faith that needs to grow, sometimes works more slowly.
Once Again Monsignor, a home run or a run home is more like it.
I read your posting just before going over to our local Church to meet a deacon friend of mine for our daily prayer time with the Liturgy of the Hours in front of the tabernacle.
It is no wonder that the Holy Mass is considered the source and summit of our faith.
I had my own experience that proved to me beyond a shadow of a doubt that Jesus is present in the Eucharist many years ago.
God Bless You
Very nice story and theologically appropriate
Yes, the Real Presence is real. And so are demons! Why on earth we still have bishops and priests who deny this is beyond me. There are even dioceses that do not exorcists. We think always in the psychological these days. But still many of fail to see the spiritual which is by far even more powerful then anything physical of which the physical is a part of. Oh well, I just hope that poor soul suffering terribly under the weight of demonic possession found comfort and relief at some point of his/her life. May God have mercy in his/her immortal soul.
Agreed, step by step we’re getting back to the “old time religion.”
(I need to work on my proof reading skills!!)
Yes, the Real Presence is real. And so are demons! Why on earth we still have bishops and priests who deny this is beyond me. There are many dioceses that do not have exorcists. It’s all psychology these days. Psychology is vital but many of us fail to see the spiritual which is by far even more powerful then anything physical of which the psychological is a part of. The greatest deception of the evil one was to convince people that the fallen angels and eternal hell doesn’t exsist. I just hope and pray that poor soul suffering terribly under the weight of demonic possession found comfort and relief at some point of his/her life. May God have mercy on his/her immortal soul.
You are right about us knowing the true Presence intellectually–but for this realization to reach the core of our soul is a marvelous, and awesome experience. and one we should seek. Thank you for the reminder.
Thanks for your faith
Good post. But it is interesting that during the consecration our thoughts can be turned from God to distraction (caused by our mind possibly…the ever present to do list is a prime example) or to sins that have long ago been forgiven but we feel that they have not (Satan or our own psychological make up would be the possible causes). In my experience Satan or the evil spirits are allowed to stay around consecration time, before, and after, due to the fact that either God is permitting them to tempt us/oppress us OR because we have invited them into certain aspects of our lives and we haven’t asked God to clean them out. Make a further effort in acts of faith, praise, and thanksgiving to God right then and there for the former and ask God to cleanse you/give Him permission to clean house in the latter instance. Satan usually doesn’t like drawing the kind of attention to himself mentioned in your post because it greatly validates the faith in God of those who already believe. he seems to work more effectively when we are not aware of his influence or when we keep quiet about how we think he is working against us. When we share what we are going through or the struggles we are having with a good spiritual friend/advisor they can sometimes see the enemy’s typical plan of attack and help us dismantle it better than we can.
understood, one point does not preclude the other.
Just the other day, there was a discussion about some experiences people had from a lack of respect relevant
to the presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist on Fr. Z`s blog, who happens to be a big fan of the Tridentine
(latin) Mass. All the experiences expressed from the flood of posts that followed all seemed to come from celebrations of the Novus Ordo and the abuses were astounding. The woman who originaly contacted Fr. Z
claimed that the Priest who celebrated the Novus Ordo got some particles of the Host on his hands and wiped them on the carpet. She was horror struck. If every priest believed as you do, Msgr. Pope, I don`t believe we would have all the abuses that I`ve heard about. For some unknown reason it seems that a great number of priests, even some coming from seminaries today, seem to regard the Eucharistic Sacrafice as symbolic rather than transubstantiation and that is very sad and I believe the result of liberation theology. The Holy Father himself stated, in the “reform of the reform,” from Cardinal Koch, the Vatican`s top ecumenist, that there is a need to revisit the teachings post Vat II due to a neglect in the paschal mystery in the Eucharistic celebration. There is in fact a resistance from rigid progressives on acceptance of the EF and this also was addresed. It took 40 years to get to where we are and it will take time to get to where we need to be however, with more priests who feel and believe as you do, it may be sooner than later. Pax
I don’t think doubt of the true presence is common among young clergy today. And, while it is true that abuses are less common in the EF there is also something of a self-selected group here, whereas the wider Church has a less insular experience and thus abuses are more common. I still think that little by little, Brick by Brick, things are resolving. Fr. Z has well influenced and inspired a generation of younger clergy in both forms. May he be blessed.
I hope your right Msgr. Pope. I have not taken an ABC poll on how wide spread the irregularities are in the Novus Ordo, I can only go by what I have read of other peoples experiences on other blogs and my own personal experience at a Church not far from me that I won`t attend any more. Some of them that posted though, were seminarians, and I can only conclude from their descriptions of what they were taught and that the teaching lacked a proper training that they were looking for in relation to the celebration and theology of the paschal mystery. From my own seminary days a long long time ago, I know there are differances and one or two
descriptions dose not equal all of them. Your story, by the way, was published in a conservative Catholic news
bulletin that I recieve automatically at my email address and so I got to read it again. I will pass your compliment on to Fr. Z. I am sure he will appreciate it. All priests today need our support and prayers which is why I belong to the Confraternity of St. Peter. Please know you are in my prayers. Blessings and Pax to you.
Dear Msgr. Pope –
Thank you for this powerful post. I would like permission to run this post on my blog at http://www.RCSpiritualDirection.com. I will link back to this site and provide proper credit. If I don’t hear back I will assume permission.
Yes, please feel free to reprint anything I post here. Looks like you have a great site. I am going to bookmark it.
I really enjoy your posts at RCSpirtualDirection.com, I’m a most everyday reader. I’m looking forward to seeing the link back to Msgr. Popes article, go team!
God be praised! What a wonderful story. Too many times we are taught to believe in devils but not in our Lord. If the Lord was not here, we would be instantly destroyed by the demons. But Jesus is alive and very well and there to forgive our sins and to dwell among us in the Holy Eucharist! So it is no wonder this evil soul was tormented. It could never be in the True Presence of Light and Mercy! It had to cry out and leave. Darkness can never overcome the Light. When the Light is presence, Darkness is instantly overcome!
Yes, and we can hope the light reached the tormented soul.
…and if I may say.. pray, including the St Michael’s Prayer, that the light reaches the tormented soul and all tormented souls.
I was in Medjugorje in June of this year for the 30th anniversary of the apparitions of the Blessed Mother of God. Mass was being celebrated everyday and in many languages. I attended the English mass in the morning. It was not unusual to hear the loud animalistic moanings of certain indviduals who – as they were approaching St. James Church started the loud moaning, shreiking etc. and were clearly possessed. I had heard these horrible sounds at least 2 or 3 times during the day. I used to attend the healing mass at 7:45 in the evening & on one occasion, a young woman who appeared to be in her late twenties or early thirties fell to the ground & started screaming with this horribly loud vile voice that sounded like it was being amplified. It was in front of me and I was in shock. It was so loud & so horrible, and I was in shock momentarily. Two fellow pilgrims, who were with my group, must have seen my ashen face & remarked: “Oh, it’s your first time seeing this- isn’t it.” Shortly after – 2 priests came running out with Holy water, others joined them & started sprinkling her. She continued to bellow in the loudest voice I had ever heard coming out a human being. More priests came running down & were also sprinkling her with Holy water. She was drenched. At some point the horrid bellowing started dying down & she started sobbing. Two nuns came by & helped her up & I believe took her to recuperate.
Evil is real. Possession is real. I had been taught that it was far and few between or that it was non-existant.
I have no doubt whatsoever now – of the existance of evil.
Unfortunately, the events at Medjugorie have been officially rejected by the Holy Father (both JPII and Benedict XVI therefore, by the Catholic Church. The faithful have been told officially that the so-called visions at Medjugorie are NOT from Heaven or from our Lady and therefore are not sanctioned by the Church. That means that despite the attraction of all the “miraculous” occurrances that seem to happen there, the faithful are not to frequent it. It has been proclaimed by the current and past Bishops of Mostar and Medjugorie. It is NOT an approved sight and you should not be enticed by “miraculous” healings, conversions, etc., because the devil will lure any faithful Catholic away from the Church in anyway he can–including making something evil seem holy. I would highly recommend you and others who follow this false apparition to check with the local Bishop who oversees the Medjugorie area and even Rome. Obedience is very difficult sometimes, but we must always have the humility to cede to the lawful Authority of the Church. St. Bernadette (et al) is a perfect example of this humility.
Have they really been rejected, or just not affirmed? I am not up to date on this matter.
Medjugorje is still under investigation and in the meantime, Catholics are permitted to make pilgrimage there. There seem to be conflicting reports on the beliefs of the Popes. I have visited twice and witnessed miracles (even though I was skeptical) the first visit, and my husband and I witnessed a similar event as Msgr. described, just 2 pews away, on my second visit, as the Sacred Host was being processed thru the church. I told my husband that we must keep our eyes on Jesus.
Medjugorje will be known by its fruits. I believe our Blessed Mother brought me back to the Church by putting a book about it before me, in a very unexpected place, during a very difficult time in my life. Father Donald Calloway (author of No Turning Back: A Witness to Mercy) had a similar experience. A member of my first pilgrimage group is now a humble and devoted priest because of Medjugorje. My husband said he didn’t need to go there to believe, because he saw the change it made in me. Although I strongly defend and believe in the apparitions of Medjugorje, if the Church says they are a hoax, I will accept that. But it seems ironic that I could now accept that because of Medjugorje :-).
I was my understanding that the apparitions of Our Blessed Mother at Medjugorie will not and can not be studied by Rome until they have ceased. That until that time the Church has made no decision either for or against their validity.
The Holy See has not rejected nor accepted the events at Medjugorje. The official decision will not be given while the apparitions are going on. This is the usual modus operandus. Many judge Medjugorje by the fruits. Millions have been there and I cannot even imagine how many have been healed, brought back to God etc. Over forty five thousand faithful have come during this 30th anniversary year. The official anniversary mass that was celebrated on June 25th of this year was one in which over 400 priest took part. Masses during that week were said in so many languages. The bishops of Mostar (both during communism & afterwards) have a right to their own opinion. Other shepards of Christ climb Cross Mountain, hear confessions, help the suffering heal etc. This is their personal time & if they choose to spend it this way – well it’s their decision. One of the priests who used to assist Pope John Paul celbrated one of the masses. Pope John Paul said on occasion (documented) that if he were not Pope – would be in Medjuggorje.
I doubt that the devil is luring people to prayer and converstions. The messages of Medjugorje are simple: 1. Prayer with the heart: Rosary 2. Eucharist 3. Holy Bible 4. Fasting 5. Monthly confessions. I was so moved by my experiences there that I joined the weekly rosary group at my parish. I’m seeing many differences for the better in my life. I have never seen a bad tree that produces good fruit.
I have to agree with Sister Terese Peter. Our Church presumes all phenomena to be inauthentic until proven otherwise. Our Church also empowers and relies on the discernment of the local Bishop of the diocese where the phenomena is occurring to pronounce judgement. Two local Bishops and a previous commission have already pronounced the phenomenon non constat de supernaturalitate and unworthy of belief. Below is a link to the local Bishop’s website outlining the Church’s position as well a link to the catechism regarding private revelation. Anyone putting themselves or encouraging others to place themselves above or in opposition to the teachings and guidance of our Church risk great spiritual danger.
@Lily – Instead of evangelizing Medj and encouraging others to fly thousands of miles for thousands of dollars to a foreign parish, why don’t you evangelize and encourage others to experience the joy of the sacraments and prayer by inviting them to your local parish? I’m elated to see you have rejoined your local parish and are praying the Rosary with them.
Vatican officials were initially dubious about the authenticity of the Fatima apparitions, which started in 1917. The apparitions were finally declared worthy of belief by the Catholic Church in 1930. It took a lot of faith and courage for folks to keep believing and praying until the final word was given by the Holy See. Communism had a deep hold on Bosnia Herzegovina in 1981, when the Medjugorje apparitions started. The Bishop of Mostar at that time was passionately opposed to any mention of Marian visions. Nothing has changed.
A letter of approval or disapproval from a local bishop does not automatically signal approval or denial. Formal approval can only be provided after detailed analysis by the Holy See. On March 17, 2010, the Vatican announced it was beginning a formal investigation of the apparitions at Medugorje. The Holy See has never officially either approved or disapproved of the messages of Međugorje, although both critical and supportive documents about the messages have been published by various Catholic figures. Cardinal Camillo Ruini is heading the commission that will study the matter. People go to Medjugorje to pray, attend confession, be healed. There are masses daily in many languages. The only risk I can see is not caring about one’s soul. Pope John Paul II expressed his opinion on this matter clearly. If it was good enough for Blessed John Paul, it’s good enough for me. By the way, I do not need to evangelize Medjugorje and encourag others. I am one small person. Others have already done that well. I am taking your last comment (church & rosary) as one made in good faith and not false flattery. Thank you.
I’m sure your intentions are good, however, I need to point out a couple things I notice in your posts that I present for your discernment. First, Sister Terese Peter has taken a vow poverty, chastity and obedience. She has consecrated herself to life long service to our Church and espoused herself to Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior himself. You chose to directly contradict and ignore her guidance as well as His Excellency, Bishop Peric’s guidance. I think this couldn’t possible please our Lord. From what tree does this kind of fruit stem from? Have you bothered to read any of the Bishop Peric’s Declarations, it seems to me it’s the least you could do after he hosted you in his diocese. Here’s an excerpt from the first document on his website:
“The Church, from the local to supreme level, from the beginning to this very day, has clearly and constantly repeated: Non constat de supernaturalitate! This practically means no pilgrimages are allowed that would presuppose any supernatural character to the apparitions, there exists no shrine of the Madonna and there are no authentic messages, revelations nor true visions! This is the state of things today. How will things be tomorrow? We’ll leave them in God’s hands and under Our Lady’s protection!”
Mostar, 1 September 2007
+ Ratko Perić
Bishop of Mostar-Duvno
What disturbs me most about this attitude I see over and over again displayed by medj ‘faithful’ is that even Adam and Eve after being tempted in the Garden and partaking of the fruit, God in his merciful goodness granted them the good grace to recognize their nakedness and in fear they at least tried to hide. Today it seems even this grace of fear of the Lord has been lost. I suppose I should at least be grateful that you seem to have the charity to allow the bishops of Mostar ‘a right to their own opinion.’ Praise God!
From invalid episcopal self ordination protect us O Lord!
http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/1100812.htm unless you’ve been there you shouldn’t judge – so far the messages that come from the people there do not go against Church doctrine..and in this day and age if a piece of bread with a figure of Christ on it makes someone believe – then that is his/her miracle – who are we do judge? we are here to guide them – not judge.
Once again I’m accused of judgment by a medj. advocate when I reference Declarations of a local Bishop, the catechism of the Catholic Church and point out the Magisterium’s current position on the alleged phenomenon which is inauthentic until proven otherwise. If pointing out, out of love and concern, that anyone who places themselves above or in opposition to the Magisterium of our Church are placing themselves and others in great spiritual danger, then I accept your accusation of judgement and joyfully find myself guilty as charged.
I’m confused however, who really is doing the judging here Lily? Was it me who pretended to know the hearts and minds of 400 priests and their reasons for attending the anniversary in a weak attempt to justify the veracity of an alleged apparition? Was it me who pretends to know the heart and mind of a ‘priest who used to assist Bl. JPII? Was it me who professed to know the heart and mind Bishop Peric, Bl. JPII or anything else you present as fact with no proof other than your own personal views and feelings? Yes, I do accept your accusation of judgement, you prove yourself quite an expert on the topic.
One last thought I’d to like to leave for your further discernment. This article was a trip to a local parish in Washington, DC for a reflection on the True Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist at a Mass that occurred years ago. Somehow something managed to highjack the flight and divert it to an unapproved phenomenon in Yugoslavia for a crash landing amongst demons.
In an unrelated comment, What is it about this particular Mass that never fails, then or now, to stir trouble? Endlessly fascinating!
I spoke as a simple pilgrim in honouring the power of the Mass to graphically defeat evil. I am blessed to have witnessed such a battle.
It was not my intention to divert honour from the power of the Eucharist .I ask forgiveness if my words inspired division. For with division and without the leadership of wise religious, we are lost sheep. Evil would rule unopposed.
St Paul reminds us that evil will also gain control if we allow legalistic debates within the body of the church to trump the faith of the child like. There were those who questioned the jurisdiction of Our Blessed Mother to attack evil at Lourdes and Fatima. We will always have those who value administrative form over the substance of faith. Our Savior came to free us from the legalists.
We are told to wait respectfully while Rome ponders Medjugorje. We are not told to attack and question .So, respectfully, we wait. There is no rush. There is no need to attack. .
While waiting, we are thankful that we live in difficult times. The Blessed Virgin came to us at Medjugorje at a time when the world faced physical destruction through war with the evil empire. As acknowledged by Pope John Paul, the Mother of God assured victory without a shot being fired. This victory ranks right up there with Joshua at Jericho.
Now we are admonished by the Blessed Mother to struggle against the devil as it launches a most insidious and devastating attack on our faith. Our weapons in this battle are the Eucharist and the Rosary.
I am thankful for the support provided to our Blessed Mother at Medugorje by the religious, led by our Franciscan brethren. With this display of simple faith by our sheppards, I know that we are again in good hands. Victory will not be denied.
In the spirit of refusing debate or division, I will not comment further on this matter. Rather, I am simply waiting for Rome and honouring the Eucharist and praying the Rosary .
Meanwhile, we must not snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. We must not engage in rash, divisive, administrative, jurisdictional issues as to whether the Eucharist is a powerful weapon in Washington but not in a small village in the middle of nowhere.
I would also hope the priests presented her for official exorcism. A sad but telling story to be sure.
Msgr. Pope, thank you for your comment about whether she was subsequently presented for official exorcism. I do not know because the two pilgrims from my group who had seen my ashen face & overall demeanor – took me to an open area under a tree. (was brutally hot that day) One of the pilgrims whose son was studying for the priesthood went on to explain that in her native country of Haiti – possession was common place. She’d had much experience and proceeded to educate me about some of the realities. Her pilgrimage to Medjugorje was to pray for healing for her country. She was elderly but climbed the mountains and hills with such a zest & fervour that she put others to shame. What a great lady she was. She taught me a lot. Thank you for your article.
Thank you very much for sharing this with us Monsignor. We have only ordinary masses at our parishes but none the less they can be very moving. I started to go back to mass about 8 years ago and every time the priest elevates the host and then the chalice saying the usual words, I start to tremble and have tears in my eyes. For me, at this exact moment the priest’s hands stops to be his own and the words he speaks are no more his own. It’s like Christ traveling more than 2000 years to be present with us during this sacred moment.
It is Christ elevating the bread, breaking it and then elevating the cup once again just as he did at the last super. I thank those priests who say mass in a respectful way and I like when bells are heard during the elevation. Some parishes don’t use the bells anymore, too bad.
Thank you for this beautiful testimony and for your faith!
Many are called to believe and a few are chosen to bear witness.
What a beautiful story, and what encouragement to you and to the Faithful to see that demonstration of His Presence! Years ago, my father (Evangelical-Calvinist, and a man of integrity who lived his faith in a way I have failed to find since) asked me: “What DO Catholics believe about Communion?”. I thought, “Oh dear!”, because I knew he wouldn’t like what I was about to say, but I owed such a man no less than the Truth, so I answered that we believe that in the moment when the priest says: “This is my body” bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Christ, or words to that effect. His reply was: “Well, in that case it’s even more ridiculous than I thought!” OUCH! The person I most loved and respected was rubbishing the very reason I was a Catholic (strictly speaking, I can answer the question as to why I became a Catholic in one word: transubstantiation). Sometimes I have myself stood back and thought, in incredulity, “Do I really believe that?”, because it seems so incredible. (I once repeated my: “Do I really believe that?” to a priest, at which he remarked that what was I doing teaching Catechism (at least he cared). I hastily reassured him my question was due to awe and wonder, rather than disbelief.)
As to my dear father, I muttered VERY quietly: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” Both he and my mother are now gone to their eternal reward, and I imagine them meeting in Heaven and dad saying to mum, somewhat surprised: “You know, you’ll never believe it, but Annie was right.” (Well, she was if she was actually living, and spreading, the teaching of the Church ….)
I am an Indian Benedictine monk priest living in the southern state of Kerala, India. I have see similar phenomena many times, when I celebrate Holy Mass in local language for the people. People who wear amulets, or having influence of witch craft or some thing diabolic, I have seen falling down unconsious during the time of elevation. It was more among poor village women,; they some times go to hindu deities also for prayer or healing to the local magic man who gives them some magic thread to wear on their bodies. They groan loud and fall.
I think you should remember that Satan can decieve us by making things looking fruitful from God even when they are not from God. Therfore, many of those who believe in Medjagorie will be in disbelief and leave the church when they find out the truth that this apparation is not for real, This is when Satan will totally decieve those who believe they are faithful Catholics.. You see Satan may appear as Mary ; except for her feet. Yes, his cloven feet will always appear. In Medjagorie the apparation shows his cloven feet covered so you can not see them. It is said that you should always be able to see Mary’s feet so you can tell if its the hooven claws of Satan or Marys feet.
We are taught in our religion that we are not to promote Apparations that are not approved by the church. THis includes Medjagorie. The Bishop at that time and maybe even now from Medjagorie himself said this is not a true apparation.
The sister and priest who started this whole story have an illigitimate child. The priest is under investigation now for something he did that was against our faith. I spoke to Michaei Davies who did a piece on the apparation story. He told me when ne went to Medjagorie just to speak to others and see for himslef since he has no opinion either way. That local people even said that it was a made up story. Also, there are many followers who have gone back home to inform there spouses that Mary appeared to them — that they are now seers and they left their spouses.
I took Note to what Michael said and came to my own conclusion after reading articles printed by the so called Medj. folllowers. I was surprised that the seers were the ones who moved the apparations into the church off the hill. I also was shoked to read the news that the Boy Seer ( Ivan, i believe) married on Easter. Hmm , I was always taught that Sunday was the Lords day and Sundays Holydays and Lent was not a time you were married in the church. Let alone Easter! Next ,the paper supported many unapproved marian apparations and only once supported the Fatama pilgrimage it is said that Medjagorie is only going to distract people from the true apparations and message of Fatima and it has done this well. It has been proved that thier messages contrdict the Bible teahings. The seers themself have said they do not have to dress as modest because its old fashion. Last , yet not least, the seers are very rich now and making great profits from the followers going to see this false apparation.
Sorry for any typos.
I wish every Priest knows the Power behind them and in them. Yes Mosgr. your message is a powerful one, for everyone who has the opportunity to read through. I believe that Jesus is trully present in the Eucharist. Whenever I attend the Eucharistic celebration or adoration, I speak with Jesus as a Human Being fully present with us. Yes the devil and all its beastly tricks and manipulations has no power over the children and friends of God. Every Knee shall bow at the pronounciation of the Holy Name Jesus, all demonic power disapear. Let every priest of God, I mean the Catholic Priest be strong in Prayer, May the spirit of our Good God help them to proclaim His power and presence rigorously especially in the present situations in our World.
Jesus is real in the Holy Eucharist. He is God that will be in Communion with us, this is the Greatest Gift God left to mankind, we are privileged to have the chance to partake it. We will pray for priest and for all the faithful that they maybe able to understand not just in mind and doctrine but at heart, how Great a Gift it is to us Roman Catholics.
Reflecting on this post, I was reminded of an anecdote a lady share with us about an incident in which a Hindu religious procession having to make a detour bypassing the main road going to their temple which also had to pass through the Catholic Church of Visitation just when the consecration was taking place.
It was a Saturday sunset mass and the church is located in the middle of the town main road in which at the end of that road is a Hindu temple. In Malaysia, the religious profession of the people are Muslim for the Malay population, Buddhist/Tao/Confucious leaning for majority of the Chinese population and Hindu for Indian-descent people. It so happened that on that particular Saturday evening, the Hindu temple had a procession of their deity on an ox-cart passing through this main street in the town. This procession involved also temple acolytes, dancers and musicians, with trumpets and drums and a large crowd of people.
However, according to the lady, just as the priest was doing the consecration, she heard a very loud commotion outside the church and apparently it was this procession which seems to have had trouble with the oxes, who refused to move and stopped just before the main door of the church, which was wide opened at that time, and the accompanying “temple acolytes”, musicians and others, were trying to coaxed the oxes into moving but apparently just refused to move.
Finally, after some delay, they managed to get the whole procession to move again by taking a detour on to another road which bypass the church before coming back to the same road after bypassing the main entrance of the church.
Demons fear the Almighty! and they HATE latin! I think saying the words in latin makes it more profound – I wish we could have all our masses in latin. Just a thought.
Please feel free to visit my blog about a great American Exorcist and stigmata.
I also maintain a web site: http://www.traditionalcatholicism.org
We will pray for that soul that showed up at your Mass.
With the assurance of my Holy Rosary prayers for all your good work in the vineyard of the Divine Master, I remain yours truly in Jesus and Mary Immaculate.
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