Category Archives: Spirituality

Make this Lent the event that will change your life forever…

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The season of Lent is something so regular in its advent that it is easy to lose the proper sense of what we should be doing differently, and why this season is so important for our lives as Catholics.

Indeed, so scheduled and habitual are the events of modern life, that it is easy to let the season of Lent go by without ever making those changes necessary in our daily schedule, without which it is impossible to gather and taste the spiritual fruits of the season.

Lent is a Season for Good Works

First, let’s enumerates many good works that can be done during Lent, which though salutary each in a different manner, do not comprise the essential act that we should be engaged in, frequently, during this season.

Thus, first, there is the lenten resolution, which, even when I was a child, was still quite commonly practiced among Catholics — a sort of Catholic version of the New Years resolution, but us much more Christian.

While, yes, it is a good thing to resolve at the start of lent, to undertake some work of charity or devotion, to sanctify this holy season.  That is not the essence of Lent.

Thus, it is a good and holy thing to resolve to go to Daily Mass, receive the Sacraments more frequently, give alms to the poor in the third world, purchase a book about spiritual things, and read some of it, or attend devotional exercises such as the Stations of the Cross, while not neglecting to keep Friday’s meatless, these things while they should never be omitted, are not precisely what Lent is about.

Preparation for Holy Week and Easter is only the Secondary purpose of Lent

Now frequently we hear that the purpose of Lent is to prepare us to celebrate worthily the Sacred Feasts of Holy Week and Easter.  This too, while true, is only a secondary purpose behind Lent.

True, Lent is a liturgical season, which originated to prepare converts to the Faith, for Baptism on Easter, in the early centuries of the Church.

But Lent, as a liturgical season, is not directed principally to preparing the individual or the local Catholic Community to celebrate liturgical ceremonies worthily.  Rather, it has a higher purpose, just as the ceremonies do not exists for themselves, but for a higher purpose.

There is a certain sort of error, which has quietly creeped into the Catholic world in the last century, which conceives Catholic life to consist essentially in liturgical celebrations.  So widespread is this error, that you find Catholic laity reading out loud the entire rite of the Mass in Latin or in the vernacular, when the priest is absent, going so far as to say the priest’s parts; while thinking that on Sundays when there is no Mass in their area, that it would be a sin or fault or imperfection to omit the similitude of the liturgical celebration, so essential they believe that is to Catholic life.

Without a doubt the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is essential to the life of every Catholic and to the entire church.  But the liturgical ritual’s enactment is not the center of life.  Its what that ceremony represents, which is the center of our life:  the Passion and Death of Our Lord Jesus Christ, through which, and without which, we cannot be saved and receive grace.

And hence the scope or role of the liturgical functions is not to be an end in themselves, but to be instruments and occasions for us to do those acts which are essential to Christian life:  the practice of the theological virtues of Faith, Hope and Charity; the contemplation of God and of Heavenly things, and the consideration of the present state of our souls in the light of God.

The Primary Purpose of Lent

Lent, essentially, is for this:  to be an occasion in which we consider profoundly and anew, the state of our souls in the light of God, and in considering this, weighing the immense travesty of our sins against the dire and extreme eternal punishment, which we most certainly merited for them.

This most sober of considerations is what Lent is about.  Without that consideration and that done frequently in this holy Season, we miss the whole importance of Lent.

Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell:  these are the 4 Last Things, and these should be the objects of our frequent consideration, in Church, and out of Church.

The Saints made the consideration of the state of their soul in the light of God their habitual, daily reflection and habit of mind.  It was for this reason that the Saints did so many things which startle the mind and stir the soul of whomsoever hears or reads of them.

Essential Practices for Lent

We will soon enter into the season of Lent.  It will therefore, be very useful for us, now to consider its essential practice, ordering all the other customary practices of Lent towards this one essential thing:  our own repentance.

The mere consideration that we have sinned, is necessary, but this is not the only step we need to take.

We need to examine the causes of our sinfulness:  in which things or places are have we most sinned:  with whom, about what things, during which activities.

A wise Catholic who actually wants to save his soul, does not take likely the consideration of such things.  This is so, because he is a prudent Christian who realizes that unless he corrects a minor spiritual problem, it can easily grow into a greater one.

A humble Catholic too, realizes that, in the reconsideration of ones past sins, one can often find that one’s past confessions were much too superficial, and that in failing to remove one’s self from the occasions of those sins, that the vice which bore their deadly fruit has grown deeper still in one’s soul.

Let’s consider, therefore, the motives we should have in examining our conscience during Lent.  I do not mean “examining one’s conscience” in the perfunctory and quick manner in which we are accustomed, rightly, to do prior to receiving the Sacrament of Penance.

I mean this in the sense of the habit of meditation we should have to do this, whenever we do this, but especially throughout every day of the season of Lent.

Just as one’s house will soon be filthy as a pig-sty, if one does not regularly clean every corner of it; so the soul gathers moral filth through very tiny and unnoticed daily sins.

These grow the vices in our soul; and when these vices are strong enough they give birth to the evil fruit of mortal sin.  And since one mortal sin, unrepented of, is sufficient to lose eternal life, and merit the everlasting and unimaginably excruciating fires of Hell, the prudent Catholic will not take lightly the importance of cleaning the house of his soul.

The first difficulty in this work that we find is that venial sins, each of them, reduce quite unnoticeably the ability of our souls to recognize sin and its effects.

Thus, unless we have a strong habit of examining our soul, when it comes time to think of our sinfulness, we cannot find anything to convict ourselves of!

If this is the case, with yourself; then you have found the first thing to confess and the first thing you must investigate with prayer and meditation:  the fact that you do not recognize yourself to have sinned.

As the Psalms say, even the holiest of men sins seven times a day.  If you are not a Saint, you surely sin more than 7 times a day; if you are a Saint you will already be convinced that you sin much more than this.

However, to counter super-scrupulosity, which is the spiritual disease of those who are convinced that certain things are sins, and that they have committed these quite frequently, even though their real sins are much greater, and by this too anxious of self-accusations they omit the consideration of their vices of pride or despair in the power of God’s grace to forgive them in the Sacrament of Penance; nevertheless for the majority of us, we have not this fault, we just don’t see our sins; we do not suffer from a preoccupation of believing we have sinned when we have not; we suffer from the opposite spiritual fault, of considering we have not sinned, when we have!

One rule of thumb is, that if you do not consider you have committed any sins in the last year, you probably have the habit of committing many mortal sins:  its just that since the effect of sin is the darkening of the mind, you have been so blinded by your sins that you can’t see it.

Lent is a prosperous spiritual time to seek the cure of such a blindness.  And one must seek it, to escape from the dire punishment of Hell which would surely engulf such a blinded soul!

Practical Remedies to Cure one’s own Impenitence

There are some practical remedies to obtain this cure, which need to be mentioned, because they are never preached.

The first is that for most of us, a direct attack upon this blindness does not convince of anything.  Even a very moving sermon, has little or no effect beyond recognizing that it was such.

The actual change of heart, which is the goal of repentance evades the sinner.

A direct attack upon this spiritual insensitivity to sin does not work, because one can only recognize sin, inasmuch as one opens one’s mind to the ability to see it and fear it.

Spiritual blindness is accompanied by a lack of fear of sin; a certain habit of easily excusing major sins, as if they were light faults; and venial sins and imperfections.  There is a certain distortion of judgment in the soul, which has resulted by ignoring the immortality of sin for so long.  And it is, admittedly, a very evil consequence of sin, to free one’s self from.

And to be absolutely frank, its is very rare that a single confession will be sufficient.  Just as those with cancer are not cured by taking just one pill, but often have to endure very painful procedures and months and years of treatment; so this kind of insensitivity to sin requires a long and protracted treatment.

The key to progressing against this awful spiritual disability, is to take tiny steps towards weakening and conquering this disability.

Regaining one’s ability to see one’s own sins, is not some mysterious spiritual practice.  It begins with the recognition of one sin which our conscience still can see is a sin.  Perhaps, however, we only think it is an imperfection or venial sin; but if we consider its causes or nature or occasion, it certain, in a soul which does not consider itself to be a great sinner, that he has overlooked something which conceals the fact that he is in reality a great sinner.

I won’t speak about the fact that it is already a mortal sin of pride to consider that you are not a sinner: because such a declaration for such a soul is usually too much to understand.  Pride is a very spiritual sin, and one who has lost the sense of morality, has lost the sense of what is spiritual.

However, at the start it is always useful to consider and recognize intellectually that this is true; even if affectively and effectively we do not understand how this can be the case, because of our blindness.

How to dispose one’s self to the great Grace of Repentance

So, uprooting spiritual blindness begins with considering the one thing we can still see as a sin or imperfection.  This is the first step, because the very nature of spiritual progress is an re-capacitation of the power of the mind to consider spiritual things.  And like dominoes which when aligned properly, cause the next one to fall, when they themselves are toppled, so sins, when recognized and repented of, are the occasion to open our minds to the recognition of other sins.

In each step of the process, the recognition of one sin is the work of the conscience in its present state.  But this recognition cannot enable us to make the second step, which is repenting of the sin, because this second step is the work of prayer, devout and persistent to obtain the grace to repent of it.  And this can only be obtained by humble supplication.

All kinds of fasts, prayers, liturgies, meditations, pilgrimages, spiritual readings, alms, etc., are not going to assist your soul, if you do not use them as accompaniments to the work of earnestly begging for the grace of repentance, and disposing yourself to it by acts of self humiliation before God, in private, in the recesses of your heart and mind, wherein you declare, decide and resolve, that God is God, and that you are just a poor sinner, who in no manner deserves anything but judgment and damnation!

Humility is the key here:  how often a sinner might struggle to overcome one vice all his life, but fail to do so, simply because he never got down on his knees in private, and admitted to God and to himself that he was incapable of virtue by himself, and that he could only be virtuous and good, by the gift of God, earnestly begging Him for it on such an occasion!

This humble prayer and devout, secret supplication for grace, is the key step and the essential prerequisite for repentance, though, it can in fact be done in the secret of one’s heart, even in public places, while driving, or traveling, or even during other occupations, when the soul is properly disposed and God in His Mercy bestows the actual grace for it to occur.

During this essential step of humble recognition, a sorrow is engendered in the soul, along with a fear and realization of the danger of damnation, that the heart and mind turns vivaciously towards God and stirs it to ardently appeal for grace.

During such times it sometimes happens that this movement is responsive to grace sufficiently to receive the gift of tears, and during such a gracious movement, the dispositions of the soul can be cleansed and purged from years and years of distorted affections; leaving the heart with a new and healthy sense of sin and its gravity, and a new and healthy vivacity for things spiritual and heavenly.

The Proper Place and Role of Self-mortification

Essential to preparing the soul for such a humble recognition is the practice of mortification.

Mortification consists corporally with fasting from beverages and food, abstaining from meat and rich foods; use of cold showers, and the endurance of sensations which are painful or sacrificial.

Mortification of the body does not work, when such activities are undertaken by a spirit of self-sufficiency, a kind of presumption that without God one can work his own repentance, or that in doing such things, one proves that he is not a sinner or is some sort of spiritual giant or athlete.

Such a spirit makes such corporal mortifications sinful!

Rather such practices should be undertaken only with the motivation to humble oneself, detach oneself from such a spirit of self sufficiency, and open the door of the spiritual world to the virtue of humility.

This desire to seek spiritual enlightenment, to leave aside one’s pride, to change one’s life at its root, to gain a sense of spiritual things and to loose one’s carnal view of things, should be the motivation of spiritual mortifications, which are very helpful to dispose our souls to the grace of repentance:  such as all those customary acts of Lent, which were mentioned at the beginning of this essay, a snot being the principal purpose of Lent.

Repentance is the principal purpose of Lent, and all other things must be ordered to that.  But repentance has as its goal the reuniting of the soul with God and the resumption of the path toward perfection in the pursuit of eternal salvation. Lent thus finds it glory, not in preparing us for liturgical celebrations in time, but in being an occasion to return to the quest for eternal salvation in eternity.


CREDITS: The Featured Image is Giovanni Bellini’s, Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane, which correctly depicts the fortitude of Christ in spiritual warfare, unlike so many more recent paintings which show Him collapsing under the sight of the sufferings He as about to endure. The image is used here in accord with a GNU Free license, though the work of art is in the public domain.


Stop treating Jesus as your insurance policy. He is your God!

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

We all know of the modern phenomenon of the baptized Catholic who only calls himself “Catholic” when he wants to spout some heresy, blasphemy or Marxist agenda point.

However, in Lent, we need to turn our eyes to the other more common grievous errors, of which, perhaps, all of us have been guilty of at some time in our lives.

First of all, there is the cultural Catholic. He is the one who marvels and praises the Catholic Religion for its visible achievements in art, architecture, liturgy, literature, philosophy etc.. He enjoys being Catholic and the Catholic Faith, but he stops at that. He may or may not defend the truths of the Faith, but he will not disassociate from the Catholic Faith. This kind of Catholic is not living at the level of faith. He is certainly failing first of all in gratitude, because the Catholic Religion does not exist to make your life enjoyable or pleasant nor to serve you as a cultural context, even though it does all these things. Just as there were many in Israel, and even among the Apostles, who admired the Temple of Herod, Our Lord reminded us all that such things will pass away, and that to appreciate their experience but not use them for eternal purposes, is to misuse them.

Second, there is the most common type of Catholic, who sees Jesus and the Catholic Faith as his insurance policy. He definitely believes the Faith on important issues, and wants to make sure that if there is a Hell, he does not end up there. — If he has a vocation to the priesthood or religious life, he believes because it guarantees him a career or education. But Jesus always remains a god who exists to serve him and obtain things for him. That is it. Yes, there is the love of gratitude and friendship, but not the love of a God to be adored unconditionally. — But in no case, is Jesus a reason for him to change his career, lifestyle, home or to do anything that would seriously alter his personal relationships with anyone except those whom he does not like or sees a personal advantage in unfriending.

The problem here is that Jesus is not our collectible nor our insurance policy. And thus one is just in saying that these two types of Catholics are misusing the Catholic Religion and not taking to heart the Gospel preached by the Church, which says that Jesus is the Living God and that we must and are ontologically obliged to serve Him alone.

The near disappearance of this third kind of Catholic spirit is precisely what is behind Vatican II and the aggiornamento: indeed it is absolutely impossible such a Council would have been ever called or conceived, let alone executed, if this third kind of a Catholic was in charge.

This is also the reason why Catholics are finding it neigh impossible to believe that Christ promised us through His High Priestly Prayer to guarantee some basic minimums for the visible Church, minimums which do not include a Church which is culturally pleasant to myself or which serves me as an insurance policy.

If we worship God alone, the rest follows as a dividend on our investment of faith. If not, it will all be stripped away.

Lent is now the season. Let us take time and review how we have treated our God and Savior and how we have limited our relationship with Him. And let us change our priorities.

Our Soul only has one channel, use it well

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

When I was but a boy, there were about 8 channels on television. I did not grow up listening to the radio, as that was turned on only if the family was in the car traveling somewhere.

When I became a teen there was maybe 15 channels on television. That was all we could receive with the antenna on the roof.

But when I moved to Florida in the start of the third year of High School, we had satellite tv, and there were so many channels and no TV guide to tell you what was on.

The internet made the number of channels and sources of information explode to the infinite. Today, on any topic whatsoever one can find more information than one has time to read, listen to or even understand.

And most people get lost in all of that.

But our mind only has one channel, and if we don’t use it well, we have lived in vain.

This one channel is the source of information and understanding that can change our life, if we use it.

First of all, this channel is superior to all the others, since this one can talk to God, the Saints and the Angels. This one can receive understanding that will change our life for the better. This one, is the only one, too, which can give us true information about ourselves.

Indeed, if we do not turn this channel on, we are living in a fog, and are not in contact with reality, as much as we might think otherwise.

The one problem with this channel, is that if we turn its attention to any of the other channels available, we are actually using it at the lowest level of its capacity. For just as if we always look at what is on the sidewalk, we might miss the most important meetings and appointments of life; or just as if we went to sea only looking at the waves, and never at the weather or the stars in heaven, we would be constant danger of being dashed in the most terrible misfortunes; so in life, if we do not direct the one channel of our soul to the highest things which it can consider, we are living dangerously and foolishly.

Unlike all these other channels on television or social media, this one channel of the soul can obtain for us the truth about life and the world to come and how to get there. And if we fail to use it, we won’t just ruin our life in this world, we will end up making the worst possible eternal choice: that of indifference, which is punished with eternal horrors.

This wondrous capacity of our souls requires, however, one thing only: that we keep the attention of our minds on the Way, the Truth and the Life, that is, on Jesus Christ, who gave us this channel of the mind, so that we could come to know and believe in Him, and follow Him out of the shipwreck of this world, to the land of abiding safety and salvation.

Finally, this is the only channel where with prayer, meditation and a good and abundant dose of repentance, we can begin to unlock and open the shutter of our soul, clean off the window, and come to understand that where Jesus and His Saints are, is the true reality, and the true only worthwhile destination.

Lent is a time for prayer, reflection, repentance and contemplation. And the best way to start is to turn off all the other channels, and begin to consider how you have wasted your entire life attending to them, and not using the full capacity of the one channel of your soul and mind, to come to know Jesus and follow after Him.

Meditations on how to be a Roman Catholic

Talking about Guardian Angels on their National Holiday: Ascension Thursday

Many don’t know, that, if one could say that the Angels of God have a national holiday, that it would be today: the Solemnity of the Ascension of Our Lord into Heaven. Why? — Hear what Br. Bugnolo says in this 40 minute catechesis on True Devotion to your Guardian Angel: what it is, and how to practice it, and what is the diabolic error many have fallen into…

The Blessed Virgin Mary is the Mother of Truth and we should imitate Her

In this video, Br. Bugnolo speaks about Our Lady’s title as “Mother of God”, and how this means something great as an example for our interior life and how we conduct ourselves among men. He also discusses, libel, calumny, the definition of truth, bigotry and how to consider accusations of criminal activity against other persons. He mentions Ann Barnhardt’s recent screed against a Franciscan Friar and what Catholics should think about unsubstantiated accusations against anyone. — A necessary Catechesis in the post-Soviet, post-Star Wars Era world.

Contra Spiritus idolatriae: A short guide to the discernment of spirits

REPRINTED FROM’s NOV. 7, 2019 Edition

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

One of the most useful books that anyone can read to begin the spiritual life is the work by Saint Ignatius of Loyola on the Discernment of Spirits, which is called his book on Spiritual Exercises.

I say for beginners, because that is what the great Saint Theresa of Avila judged it to be, for beginners.

For beginners, because it deals with the first level of discernment: what is truly good and what is truly evil.

What is truly good is all that which leads you to take the side of Christ and live for Heaven, to arrive at Heaven and do all that is necessary to help others get there.

What is truly evil is all that which leads you to NOT take the side of Christ and NOT live for Heaven, to NOT arrive at Heaven and to do anything which impedes you or yourself to get there.

The second level of discernment is for those who have taken the side of Christ.  As St. Ignatius says in his Spiritual Exercises, such persons can only be deceived by devils who APPEAR TO BE GOOD and angels of light, but which are experts in deceit.

So, on the second level, St Ignatius gives indirect rules for discernment, as to whether the propositions of a spirit to your soul leave you in a state of encouragement, light, zeal, or rather in a state of discouragement, darkness and sadness.  He lays down this rule, that for those walking the way of virtue, a spirit from God adds to one’s encouragement, light, or zeal to serve Jesus Christ, and an evil spirit instead leaves one empty in proposing things too great, darker in understanding the will of God, or of less zeal in the things of Jesus Christ. Whereas, for those not on the path of virtue, a good spirit will cause one to lose zeal for serving creatures, see the lies in which one lives and turn aside from the pursuit of creatures, while an evil spirit will increase one’s obsession in the pursuit of creatures incite to the violation of more moral laws etc..

But, at the second level, this indirect rule of discernment of St Ignatius is often difficult, because it is indirect.

Or in other words, the rule of St Ignatius can confound souls, because it appears to fixate on interior states of the subject, how he feels and what he experiences, and thus in an age of sentimentalism and subjectivism is rarely practiced correctly, which is why the Society of Jesus in modern times has lost its path to God.

Rather, the direct rule of discernment at this second level is easier, namely, all which turns us away from loyalty to creatures and or towards loyalty to the service of God, is from a good spirit, and whatever does the opposite is from an evil spirit.

At this level it becomes extremely dangerous to use the imagination, because, just as the true God is the true reality of the spiritual world, so the soul which seeks him cannot find him in the world of imaginations. This is why St John of Cross counsels so strongly against reading novels for such souls. Today, we would say he counsels against watching movies, romances, television.

A soul dedicated to the service of God at this level has nothing to gain by such endeavors. And if tempted to know of them so as to counsel souls, he does better to read the critiques of zealous souls at a lower level than to watch them himself and put himself at risk of losing the grace of God.

At this second level, the key to right discernment is the criterion how to discern Spirits of Idolatry from Divine Spirits, that is evil angels from false ones. Because, as of yet, the evil angels will not manifest themselves, they will study the psychology of their victims and seek a weak point, where they will attempt to turn the soul away from God and towards seeking some satisfaction in creatures.

This is why at this level it becomes more important to fast (so as to break all attachments to food and drink inasmuch as this is inordinate and not necessary to do the will of God), to humble oneself at prayer and in daily life, especially in encounters with others (so as to break the chief vice which is pride), and to scrub one’s soul of attachments, many of which hold the soul back from serving God with a pure heart.

The lessen to be learned at this level is, God is My All, there is nothing I need which is not for His service, nothing which I desire other than to do His Will and remain faithful.

This self reflection is vital, because bad habits can lead to attachments and small deviations can allow the evil spirits to sway the soul back into sin. Here the study of the Divine Law, that is of the morality revealed by God, is vital, because through the smallest holes of ignorance about what is and what is not a sin, a soul can fall into great error, great evil and be transformed into a devil on earth, without recognizing it. So many clergy and religious have fallen from God on this score, and it is a rare soul who having strayed at this second level, returns to the Divine Service.

At the Third Level, a soul which has been faithful, whether for a short or a long time, will be tested to dedicate itself to the Divine Service through some greater work, whether it be by an inspiration to undertake a work of mercy or a work of justice.

These inspirations come most commonly from one’s guardian angel, so it is very important, in a state of grace, to make a promise to one’s Guardian Angel to heed his inspirations in all things, great and small, and to develop the knowledge of discerning when he is giving advice and following it IMMEDIATELY without any DOUBT or criticism. This takes a lot of practice and the soul often goes astray by following suggestions which are not from one’s guardian angel, but rather from the spirits of idolatry, that is of the world, the flesh or the demonic: and so the indirect rules of discernment of Saint Ignatius are a great help. We need to remember the lessons our Guardian Angel gives us and make a habit of doing readily the good works he inspires, because through them He will make known to us what God wants us to dedicate ourselves to and reveal to us our vocation, if we have one, whereby we are dedicated to God or his service.

Our Lady of the Annunciation is the example we need to follow in all our discernment. She showed Herself to be a master of discernment at the approach of the Archangel Gabriel, to know whether he was of God or not. She did not presume, she applied these rules. She also avoided the very common error of thinking that we need to wait in prayer to know what to do. Common knowledge is also a source of information about what good works to do, so as soon as She heard Elizabeth was in need, She packed up her things and headed out to help her. She was not a pietist, who believed prayer solved everything, and She was not a spiritualist, who believed that one only acts on the basis of inspirations had in prayer.

Let us pray for one another, that we be faithful to God, more faithful to God and live to be faithful to God in all we do. Amen. Ave Maria!

Do you not know of what spirit you should be?

Finally, brethren, be strengthened in the Lord, and in the might of his power. Put you on the armour of God, that you may be able to stand against the deceits of the devil. For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and power, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places. Therefore take unto you the armour of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of justice, And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace: In all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith you may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one. And take unto you the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit (which is the word of God).

— St. Paul the Apostle, Letter to the Ephesians 6:10-17.

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The Masonic culture in which we have been immersed and formed is the fundamental cause of our misunderstanding what our Christian duties are and in the increasing carnality and senselessness of the form of  life which is being proposed and imposed on us.

For man cannot be enslaved by the flesh until he abandons the spirit.

And thus since Vatican II we have been bombarded with the doctrines of the world, the flesh and the devil, to make us forget the nobility of our status, grace and calling as adopted sons of God. To make us forget that we are not dogs and that we are not gods.

On the contrary we are called to live on high, where Christ Jesus reigns at the right hand of the Father.

At the Right Hand of the Father, in Heaven. Not in the exalted power centers of this world where idols are worshiped.

For as the Apostle teaches,

For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood; but against principalities and power, against the rulers of the world of this darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places.

This vocation as a Christian calls us to have a vision of things which transcends the merely material but does not divorce itself from reality.

We are not pure spirits and we should reject any attempt to make us spiritual without Christ Jesus.

The world of social media and the internet is designed to do just that. To give us 24/7 a huge dose of psycho bait so that we do nothing else but remain connected to the Matrix of deceit, deluded into thinking that life is thought, pure spirituality, without action or concern for others.

We are not angels, and it is unnatural for us to strive to be such, if that striving means we abandon the moral law which regards how we should live and strive in the physical word, with our bodies and souls, and ignore the pressing corporal and spiritual needs which can only be attended to in the real world.

Thus the Matrix inclines us to be passive and disconnected, while pretending to offer us new activities and connections. It results therefore in a whole population which is personally isolated from everyone else, which cannot even start a conversation with another, since all are polarized in their own cyber realities.

But above all it takes from us the time which we would spend with others, where true charity, education and concern takes place.

This is especially true in the final Armageddon which seems to be rapidly approaching. No army can win if it is not united. Therefore, there can be no true opposition to the enemies of the Church, to the enemies of Humanity, or to the Antichrist, unless we organize in the real world and form bonds of loyalty and collaboration which defy the Narrative control which imprisons so many who live in the Matrix.

And for this, we must keep our minds on high, with Christ Jesus at the Right Hand of the Father, that is, we must Pray Continually, as the Apostle urged us:

By all prayer and supplication praying at all times in the spirit; and in the same watching with all instance and supplication for all the saints: And for me, that speech may be given me, that I may open my mouth with confidence, to make known the mystery of the gospel. For which I am an ambassador in a chain, so that therein I may be bold to speak according as I ought.

— St. Paul the Apostle, Letter to the Ephesians 6:18-20.

We should pray for the grace to resist, for the grace to be enlightened so we can see the deceits of our age, discern the trustworthiness or duplicity of men, turn aside from the offers of the world, the flesh and the devil, and reckon the things which lead to Heaven as the things to be desire above all else: prayer, penance, mortification, fasting, abstinence, the reading of the Saints and Scriptures, the earnest supplication for the graces of God, before the thrones of Jesus, Mary, Joseph and all the Saints and Holy Angels.

Let us not pray as those who have succumbed, but as those who wish to rebel, who are at war, who aim to conquer the enemies of Jesus Christ. Let us pray with compassion, not bitterness; with a paternal or material desire to draw sinners and souls back to Jesus Christ, and for the grace and virtues to be effective in this apostolate of salvation.

Only to act thus is to be of the true spirit of Christ.

To be of any other spirit is to be an friend of this world, and an enemy of God.

This is especially true of all those who pursue the cultivation of the flesh. For there is no wine more able to lull the mind or turn aside the spirit from the things of God, than impurity. And impurity is not caused formally by some preternatural spirit, it is simply caused by the aggregation to too much blood in certain parts of the body.

For this reason the Saints took cold showers, ate little meat, rid their homes of things impure, of mirrors and clothing which exposed rather than conceals. For this reason Scripture condemns all those who go to the gymnasium and who respect idols of the flesh, or all idols of the ancient world were designed to incite lust.

And these errors have infiltrated deeply into Christianity since the Renaissance, when many clergy hired the most carnal men to depict the Saints and Christ as if they were Greek Gods of lust, rather than chaste servants of the Father, as had been done for 1000 years in Christian art.

So now we are compelled to break radically from this world of sin. We must treat ourselves as the alcoholic treats himself. We must abandon the world, the flesh and the devil and cleanse our homes, hearts and possessions of all that draws us to put hope in or seek the riches or acquisitions of this world.

Let us not be deceived.

Let us remember that we were not made for this world, but for the world to come.

That grace is not given to us that we might not sin while persuing the world, flesh or the allurements of the devil, BUT RATHER that we might forsake all these and seek God and His Kingdom alone.

Indeed, if we persist in the pursuit of such things, we are spurning the graces of God!

This is why the true Saints of God such as St. Bernard of Claivaux or St. Bernardine of Sienna, when they preached caused crowds to join monasteries. But the false apostles, such as Jose Maria Escrivá (who began his priesthood cohabitating with a sodomite and ended it with spanking adult women on the butt) taught laymen and women to presume they can be saved without practicing the evangelical counsels of poverty, chastity and obedience to Christ.

Indeed, St. John Bosco taught that 60% of Catholic men have the vocation to be religious or monks. Which is another way of saying that only 40% can be saved in the state of marriage or by living as single laymen.

I counsel and urge you all, therefore, in the Lord, to not take counsel with the world, For we must be either fighters or slaves. And in such a choice, there is placed before us Life or death, Heaven or Hell.


The Proud man literally does not understand who God is

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

Saint Augustine, in his book, On the Creed, in his sermon To Cathecumens, ch. 1, n. 2, comments on a truth which if we do not understand, we cannot be saved.

This truth regards God’s own limitation.

That God have limitations seems a self-contradiction.  But this contradiction only appears in a mind which knows not God or does not understand in what divinity consists.

For the Muslim, God can do anything, even deceive.

But for the Christian, our God is essentially different.

And this difference is seen in a limitation, which is actually the hallmark of true divinity.  A limitation which Lucifer did not comprehend, and which Saint Michael and the Holy Angels ever contemplate.

As St. Augustine says, in the above referenced passage: “This alone God cannot do: what He does not will do do”. Or as Peter Lombard explains in his First Book Sentences, Distinction 43: “But that must be understood thus: ‘this alone God cannot do: what He does not want, namely, Himself to be able to do”.

Amazingly, God is limited. He limits Himself. He constrains His own Will. He cannot do all things, because He wills not to do all things.

Another way of understanding this is that God, the true God, is infinite GOODNESS, TRUTH, UNITY, BEAUTY.  And as such, God’s Power is only to accomplish those things which are in accord with His own Nature, and thus He never does what contradicts Himself.

And this high truth is the key to immortality.

Because we cannot be saved unless we live according to God’s laws. For He promises salvation only to the believer in Christ, the obedient to the Holy Spirit, the faithful in all things.

And this is not an exterior rule for us alone. It is the same rule for God. For we cannot attain to live with God forever, if we refuse to live with God in time. And to live with God means to live according to the rule which He has placed about Himself: never to will to do what He does not will to God.

All sin, thus, begins with prevarication.  Prevarication occurs when we transgress God’s will. We go against it. We break His laws. We sin.

This spirit which leads us to act thus, is pride. The most difficult of all vices to uproot because it lacks most of all an appearance, being totally negative and formless.

Pride causes us to shut the eyes of our mind to the existence of God’s laws, to open our heart to the desire to do what we will, regardless of what God wills. Pride gives license to sin in darkness, in denial and in a deliberate ignoring of the truth.

And thus pride blinds.

And in blinding it separates us from God Who is the guiding Light of all rational creatures.

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Let us uproot pride, then, by being mindful of God: by praying habitually, keeping mindful of His laws, and by fearing more than all else that power which we have, to turn away from God and pretend He does not exist.

There is no eternal life for the proud, because since eternal life only exist with God and in God, those who chose to live according to the pretense that He does not exist, or would will what He does not will, are in death rewarded to meet the god which they imitated in live.

And such a god is not the true God, nor is such a place Heaven.


Quietism and Pietism, handmaids of the Antichrist

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

Just as in Hell, demons serve demons, the lesser in evil serving the greater, so in this world, errors serve errors, the lesser errors serving the greater.

This is also true in the spiritual life. And indeed, as you might imagine, it is principally through adhesion to error that the souls of men become demonic and descend downwards into the infernal even before they are ripped from their bodies in the moment of death, and dragged down to Hell — as Saint Francis of Assisi teaches.

Two of the greatest and most common errors among Catholics today are two of the most effective in preparing the way to the Antichrist.

I speak of Quietism and Pietism.

Quietism is the error which thinks that holiness consists in being not action, and that therefore one can grow or remain holy without the works of mercy. Quietism originates in France in the 17th Century, with a Catholic who falsely presented himself as an authority on the spiritual life.

Pietism is the error which thinks that holiness consists solely in acts of prayer, interior or exterior, but especially in private. Pietism originates in Germany in the 16th century, among the Protestants.

These two errors have wicked offspring which live under different names to conceal their true parentage.

The first is what one might call the Non Expedit Catholic. The concept of Non Expedit was a political decision of Pope Pius IX which in response to the robbery of the Papal States by the Kingdom of Italy declared that it was not expedient for Catholics to participate in politics in Italy because by doing so they would implicitly endorse the robber government. But Non Expedit Catholics today have no such political context to justify their position. They simply do not want to do anything to prevent the collapse of Christian civilization or to defend the Faith in the temporal order, because they have given up all hope that Christ has any power or interest in the temporal order. They so identify themselves with Christ that like Him they flee political power or influence. They pretend, like the parents who lived like capuchines in the example of St. Francis de Sales’ treatise, On the Love of God, that as laymen they should seek the level of perfection of religious. A thing the Saint reproved in strongest terms.

One variation of the ‘Non Expedit’ Catholic votes for secularist parties which are less liberal and progressive, but only because he has despaired of Catholics or Christians doing anything significant in politics. This is very common in the USA, where Catholics vote for one party to oppose the marxism of the other, under the idea that a Christian party would never win. That is how impotent they think Christ and Faith in Him are!

The second is what I call liturgicalism. The Liturgicalist Catholic holds that the entire public effort of the Catholic should consist in participating in religious public rituals, beyond which he can hold and believe in any politics whatsoever.

Together these four errors have prepared the way for the Antichrist by neutralizing the authentic Catholic spirit which showed itself past ages when so many Catholics of all walks of life were so active to preserve and promote the Christian order in the temporal sphere, that they risked life and limb in war, rebellion, and voyages of discovery and colonizations.

Catholics who lament the problems of the world on a daily basis, but do nothing personally to fight them by forming authentic Catholic political parties and supporting them, are the end produce of these four errors. They have been thoroughly inoculated and neutered. A prime example of this is today’s Catholic man, who grows a beard and gives a YouTube lecture on how to be a man, while taking care of the kids at home and letting his wife work a real job. That is the state of the lay catholic today in public life.

I fear that on judgement day, such Catholics will hear those terrible words of Christ, “To whom much was given, much was expected. What have you done with the 10 talents I entrusted to you?”

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Jesus: Lo, I am with you always!

A Meditation for The Ascension

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

The confidence to ask the Lord for the things which are necessary for our salvation and the salvation of others, is one of the foundations of Christian living.

This confidence is a wonderful gift, and to fan it into flames, we need to follow it with a consideration on the gentle but pressing Presence, the Lord Jesus surrounds His faithful with, who call upon His Name!

If one reads through the Old Testament, one can discover many wonderful and awe-inspiring examples of just how good God can be to those who are faithful, and just how terrible He can be to those who are unfaithful.

In regard to how wonderful and good He can be to those who are faithful, Our Lord proclaims in the New Testament and most consoling truth:

Lo! I am with you always, even unto the consummation of the age!

Which some Bibles in English render as, Behold! I am with you always, even unto the end of the world!

The thought that Our Lord is nearby and at hand, and present, is a most consoling thought and consideration.  But to understand and appreciate this great grace, we need to first put it into proper context, and understand aright, what Our Lord is referring to.

First, let us consider what Our Lord  IS NOT referring to.  We live in an age of faithlessness, of apostasy, of infidelity, of heresy, and of out right paganism and the revival of the same.

One horrible error and perverse practice which has arisen in recent decades is called the “New Age Movement”.  And one error of this movement says that anyone can spiritually connect into some greater spiritual power or presence, at will.

On account of this pagan superstition, promoted by such films as Star Wars, or by the promotion of the sale of crystals or by those who advocate going to spiritual places to be “energized” or “to get into contact” with spiritual power; there are not a few of the faithful who believe, that Christian life is not about sanctification, but about being “empowered” spiritually, and about being “spiritual”.

Worse of all, this error holds, that being “spiritual” has nothing to do with being morally upright, with the observance of the 10 commandments.

The insidiousness of these errors of the New Age Movement, requires that we consider very carefully and exactly, what our Holy Catholic Faith teaches, and distinguish the truths of Our Faith, from these detestable errors.

Yes, it is true, that being spiritual, does not require that you be moral or upright.  The proof of this is that Satan, the most evil and devious spirit, is by nature a pure spirit, and thus has a pure spirituality.  He is very a very spiritual angelic person, but he is very evil and immoral.

So, as far as we Catholics are concerned, it is evident that if the Devil is very spiritual, that being spiritual is not the measure by which a Catholic can measure his fidelity to the Lord, or his progress in God’s grace, nor his sanctification by virtue.

As human beings, we can only be so spiritual, and we cannot be perfectly spiritual, since for us humans, such a spirituality would be unnatural and thus sinful.

This is because, as humans, we are composed of 1 soul and 1 body.  We are in truth, both our soul and our body.  But both together.  That is why when our soul separates from the body, in death, we can truly say, not only that our bodies “die”, but that “we” die.

If were were perfectly spiritual, we would not be living with a body; and since having a body is part of human nature, such a perfect spirituality is not proper for men.

Now, do not misunderstand me; I am not saying that we ought not be holy, or that we ought not be spiritual in the proper sense of the term.

And to understand what I mean to say, let me first explain, another term:  “carnal”.  What is of the flesh, is carnal; but in the terminology of St. Paul the Apostle, “carnal” has the meaning of “disordered by concupiscence”, that is by that spiritual disease which entered into man by Adam’s sin.  After Adam’s sin, man’s flesh became carnal in a sense it was not before.  Before, his flesh was carnal in the sense that “carnal” means nothing more than “of flesh”.  But after his flesh became “carnal” in the sense that his flesh became subject to the disorder of concupiscence, which is called the fomes of sin.  “Fomes” in Latin, means “tinderbox”, and St. Augustine uses this term to indicate that concupiscence in our flesh, is the tinder upon which sinful movements arise in our hearts and bodies.

So we should be spiritual, in the sense that we should mortify ourselves, body and soul, against concupiscence, that is against having a carnal mind, or living according to the sinful impulses of the flesh.

But it is better to call this “the work of our sanctification” or “the pursuit of perfection,” than “spirituality,” because while it is true that Dominicans have a particular spirituality, and Franciscans, and Carmelites and Benedictines, etc., too; it is also true to say that Satan has his own spirituality; but that is not anything we want to know or imitate!

Back to the words of Our Lord:

Thus, when Our Lord makes us the wonderful promise or proclamation, that He will be with us, unto the end of time, we must first understand that this promise is not true in all times and places.  This seems a contradiction, so let me explain.

Yes, it is true, that this promise is true in all times and places; but it is also false to say that it is true in all times and places.  This is because, we, in all times and places, do not deserve to benefit from this promise; and so in all times and places we cannot PRESUME that Our Lord is with us.  For that reason, to avoid presumption, we ought not ASSUME that Our Lord is with us; we must rather work and strive to be worthy of His Presence!

When we do work and do strive to be worthy of His continual Presence, then these words of Our Lord become true.  Not because our power makes them true, or our effort, or that we merit that they be true; no! Rather, because when we are worthy of His Presence, He makes His Presence felt, as it were. And when we do not merit it, He makes Himself absent, as it were, that is, He does not intervene in our lives with graces and mercies, lights an protections, and leaves us to ourselves — which is a most horrible fate.

For this reason we must be on the alert for 2 kinds of spiritual paralysis, which makes us insensible to the Presence of Christ:  blindness and indifference.  The Catholic who is blinded by mortal sin or by habitual venial sin, knows still by faith that Our Lord is present, for example, in the Most Blessed Sacrament, but it means nothing to him personally.  Likewise, a Catholic who by habitual sin or neglect lives as if this truth means nothing, even while confessing it on his lips, suffers from a hardening of the heart, which is called “indifference.”

A wonderful example to illustrate this, is the simple and beautiful faith of Catholics of the Eritrean Rite. The Eritrean Catholics, unlike us Romans, when waiting for the church to open, do not stand with their backs to the door of the church; no, they stand with their faces to the door.  If you ask them why, they say that it is because Our Lord is present in the Church, and they are waiting for Him to open the doors of His House to them!

Likewise, if you have a living faith and ardent love for Our Lord, it is second nature for you, when passing a Catholic Church were the Sacrament is reposed, to want, as it were, to go and embrace that church, give it a hug, as it were, since it is where Our Lord is dwelling.  We do not hug the doors or corners of our Churches, but perhaps that is because we are just not fervent enough!

Second, to understand the words of Our Lord, upon which we are meditating this month, we need to understand what the word “present” means.

“Present” in English comes from “praesens” in Latin; in Latin the word means “being before” that is “in front of”, or in other words, “before the face of”.  What is present, therefore, is right in front of you, you need only open your eyes to see it.

Obviously, when we speak of the Presence of God, we are using a metaphor, because God, as God, is not present physically, that is corporally, anywhere; simply because God is a pure Spirit, and has no body which is bound by spatial dimensions or locations.

We we say God is present, we mean that He is attentive by His Power, Knowledge and Love.  Though God is in no place, He is present to every place, because He created every place, and sustains every place in being.  All places, as it were, are in the palm of His Hand, and so wherever we are, we are not far from Him, ontologically speaking, even if we are far from him, spiritually speaking, because we are in sin or blinded by sin or made indifferent in our hearts by sin.

With these distinctions made and these errors avoided, we are now prepared to consider what Our Lord DOES mean by this holy words:  Lo! I am with you always, even unto the consummation of the age!

Our Lord is not present to us, without any purpose.  It is for our salvation! not for our sense of sentimental peace or well being.  God does nothing without purpose, and if He is actively attentive by His Power, Knowledge and Love, that is by His Grace and Mercy, it is to save us, and to help us towards salvation, or to aide us to help others towards their own.

God makes His presence known to us, in a variety of ways.  Often it is by a grace which enlivens our soul, so that we make and act of love, faith, or hope, which move us toward observing His Commandments or evangelical Counsels, or the precepts of the Church, or to fulfilling some particular duty.  Nearly every time, Our Lord works this actual grace through the mediation of our guardian Angel; sometimes through the mediation of a special Angel, associated with such a work, virtue, place, or person; often through the intercession of some Saint, and always through the Mediation of Jesus and Mary, who always have at heart and on their mind, our salvation.

God is present, also, in two ways:  actively and passively.  Actively by the manifestation of His Power or grace.  “Passively” when we are in the state of grace, in the sense, that we need not do anything to have Him present, since sanctifying grace makes Him present to us, and we to Him.  “Passively”, Christ is also present in the Most Blessed Sacrament,  in the sense that He need not do anything, nor we, that He be present there, since He has already made Himself present there Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity; the Divinity by means of the Humanity.  But God is so infinitely Active, that even when He is passively present, He is active, that is working grace and mercy in us or for us.

But the secret of sanctification lies in a wonderful truth, which is taught throughout the Old Testament and which is valid and applicable to our days, now that Our Lord has Ascended to His Father on High.  This truth is not emphasized in the New Testament, because in the New Testament the Apostles and Evangelists were emphasizing the Sacred Humanity of Our Lord, and the New Covenant wrought in His Blood.

The secret of which I speak refers to a the power and efficacy of a “spiritual covenant” with the Lord.  Each and every man woman or child, who has supernatural faith, can make a covenant with the Lord, and thereby make himself present to God and God to him, not by grace, but by a certain sort of spiritual contract, whereby one commits oneself to doing good works, and thereby to meriting those actual graces which lead to God’s greater blessings.

Now the motivation to make such a covenant comes from God, because in the work of our sanctification, man does nothing first.  So what I say here, presumes those cases where the Holy Spirit is giving the grace.  And we know by God’s working in the Old Testament and New Testament, that He wants men to make these kinds of spiritual covenants.

In the Old Testament these covenants were the bread and butter, as it were, of the Jewish religion; but in the New Testament Age in which we live, they are secondary and very inferior to the Covenant wrought in Christ’s Blood; nay, they are only effective in that Blood, that is, when employed to arrive at doing Christ’s will on earth.

Each one of us can make a covenant with the Lord, which regards any good work, great or small.  The vows of religious are a type of covenant; marriage vows are another; a private vow to go on pilgrimage, to give up drinking or smoking, or some particularly grave vice, such as gossiping, each of these are spiritual covenants, when we promise God to fulfill them or do them.

According to an exaggerated fear, common to the age of Jansenism, when to save souls from the extremity of scrupulosity in which they thought everything was a sin, confessors were apt to counsel nothing under the obligation of a promise — an exaggeration which went so far as to lead some new religious communities not to take vows! — many a manual or book on the spiritual life counseled against making promises to the Lord.  This is quite unimaginable, and quite unbelievable, that anyone would counsel something so diametrically opposed to all that God has revealed! simply out of fear that some scrupulous person, out there somewhere, might fall into trouble by such a promise!

Oh, what scruples to avoid scruples!

Nay, rather, God wants us to enter into such a covenant with Him; and to show us that He is very pleased by it, we have only read of the wonderful blessings God bestowed upon the Jews of the Kingdom of Judah in the Books of Samuel, Kings, Chronicles, and Judges, to see the efficacy of this spiritual practice.

When we promise the Lord to do a good work, habitually, or give up a habitual morally bad habit, we show God respect, trust, love, honor, and give Him glory, as the God of all Justice and Holiness!  And this is, indeed, a thing very pleasing to God, the Holy Ghost, who is infinitely zealous for our progress in all holiness and virtue, for by such a progress we are conformed to Him.

In making any such covenant, we merit immediately the remission of some of the temporal punishment for sins, esp. for the sins we have promised to avoid.

Indeed, the spiritual life of sanctification, cannot go forward without such promises or covenants.  Spiritual stability for us feeble, unstable men is founded upon a chain of such promises, well made and well thought out, and faithfully kept, even if at the beginning, it is difficult or we fail.

These covenants are the stages of the life of perfection, the training in the art of spiritual warfare that the Lord wants to train us in.

For those who want a suggested formula for a general covenant of life with the Lord Jesus, here is a suggested formula:

A Covenant Prayer with the Sacred Heart of Jesus

O Sacred Heart of Jesus! Thou art the Great and Wonderful Lord, the Mighty God!  Who has descended from Heaven, to sweat and suffer and die, rejected, so that I might live and have life eternal!  Who ascended into Heaven to prepare a place for me in Thy Eternal Kingdom! Who dost stand before the Throne of Mercy of Thy Eternal Father, ever interceding for us! Hear, I beg Thee, the prayer of a most unworthy creature!

Mindful of all that Thou has done for me, and of how much I, a wretched sinner, need Thee:  I resolve this day to make this covenant with Thee:  I take Thee to be My God, and I surrender myself to be Thy servant and subject!

I will do what Thou has commanded!  I will head what Thou has counseled!  I will obey Thy Voice speaking to me through the true Pope, Benedict XVI, and the priests in communion with him, who are my sacred pastors.  I will mind the precepts of the Church, and confess my sins, especially resolving to uproot the vice of _________.  I am confident that with Thee all good things are possible, and that Thy grace is sufficient for me!  For to have Thee, is to have all, in time and eternity!

Help me, Save me, O most Merciful Heart of Jesus!  Make me be all Thine, and be always at my side, to help, protect, enlighten and guide me, this day, and to bring me safely to Thy Eternal Kingdom, in Heaven. Amen.

O Blessed Virgin, intercede for me, and obtain for me the grace to keep this covenant with your Divine Son! To be faithful to it, all my days. Amen.

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CREDITS: The Featured Image is a detail from Gebhard Fugel’s, The Ascension of Christ, which is in the public domain, the original of which is in the Catholic Parish Church of St. Johannes Baptist, Obereschach, Stadt Ravensburg, Germany.

The Prophetic Vision of Bl. Emmerich of May 13, 1820

By Alexis Bugnolo

Tomorrow is the 200th anniversary of one of the most historically and mystically significant prophetic visions any Saint has had in the history of the Church. Not only on account of its accuracy but on account of the fact that it speaks of our own time of chaos in Church and State. A time in which there are 2 popes at the same time, a thing unheard of in the Catholic Church at any time in 2000 years, not to speak of the last 570 years, without any anti-popes: the last being Felix V (Duke Amadeus VIII of Savory) who falsely the papacy, from Nov. 5, 1439 to April 7, 1449 A. D..

In particular, the fact that Bl. Anne Catherine Emmerich had this vision, which regards a wicked pope at Rome establishing worship for all gods in the Church, 200 years to the day that Bergoglio has called upon all religions to pray together, on May 14, 2020 is not coincidental, unless of course it was willed by Bergoglio precisely to indicate that he recognizes himself as the Anti-Christ in this vision.

For this reason, I will republish it here, from the English translation taken from The Life and Writings of Bl. Anne Catherine Emmerich. And lest anyone doubt the transcription, I will instead include here the images from the pages of the book at Google Books. I shall intersperse the pages with comments of my own.

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May 13, 1820 would not be a day which anyone in 1820 could consider significant. But the meaning of this day was made important because 97 years later Our Lady appeared on this same day at Fatima, Portugal, to ask the consecration of Russia to Her Immaculate Heart and portend dire and disastrous events in the world and in the Church if the Holy Father did not hearken to Her request, a request God Almighty would confirm with the greatest public miracle since the parting of the Red Sea by Moses: the Miracle of the Sun, of Oct. 13, 1917.

So the very date of the vision beckons us to pay attention. Our Lady appearing at Fatima on that same day is a sign that She is telling us that this vision is not about the past, but about the future, and that to interpret it as regarding ancient times is simply wrongheaded.

Second, the mention that she had a vision of two popes verifies this interpretation. Because, as I said, there has not be the conflict of a Pope and Antipope since 1445. But, it must be noted, this expression, “two popes” is even more noteworthy, because no Catholic would ever speak of 2 popes. They would say, I see a vision of a pope and of an anti-pope.  To say 2 popes is to signify a situation which is entirely unique in the Church and regards a crisis of discernment which will shake all Christendom.

Third, to mention 2 popes in regard to 2 churches is also something which is highly remarkable. Because, to those who would want to simply interpret the vision of Bl. Anne as regarding the conflict of pope and anti-pope, the mention of 2 churches makes that impossible, since every anti-pope claimed to be the pope of the same church as his rival. This is further confirmed by her mention of the city of Rome, to exclude any possible idea that she was speaking of the Coptic Pope of Alexandria or of any other see in conflict with Rome.

From these first observations, we can exclude that this mystical vision has anything whatsoever to do with the past, and is truly prophetic of the future.

2015-fashionable-personal-transport-two-wheel-scooter-self-balancing-unicycleBut Bl. Emmerich’s vision of a vehicle which is flat and has wheels but is pulled by no horses confirms that she is speaking of our own days, and in vision has seen a technology of our own days, which only recently has become popular.

Thus, as those who insist Bergoglio is the pope have attempted, at sites such as One Peter Five, any interpretation which insists that Bl. Emmerich’s mystical vision refers to ancient times, when such technology was never even imagined to be able to exist, is simply willful blindness grasping for straw.


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That this vision refers to a time future to that of 1820 and to our own time is further clarified because the Blessed openly distinguishes the time of the two popes to the wonderful vision, “Rome suddenly appeared as in the early ages ….”.

The fact that within her first vision, she is given another, is significant. For just as in any literary work references are made to the past to draw comparisons to present situations, it is clear that the Holy Spirit, Who is the author of all true mystical communications, through angelic ministrations, is calling us all to read carefully what the Blessed is about to say and compare it to the past. Here is what she says:

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And she continues:

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As we can see from the above, this reading is also confirmed by the fact that though Pope Boniface IV and the Greek usurper Emperor Phocas did live contemporaneously, Phocas was a Catholic and had nothing to do with the idolatry which was practiced at the Pantheon, a Roman Temple dedicated to all the pagan gods, which was converted to the Christian Church of Santa Maria Rotonda in 609 A.D., at the request of the former and with the permission of the later. To insist that Phocas wanted the Cross set up in a temple of demons is not only anachronistic but an absurdity of the highest order.

I hold rather, that this insertion of the historical account was willed by the Holy Spirit, because He knew well, that if He openly revealed to the Blessed Emmerich the things of the future, she would never have been beatified and her writings would have been destroyed or condemned by false shepherds. Seeing their wickedness from eternity, He spoke to her in a way the faithful who still had eyes to see, could see, and so that the blind, refusing to see, would not see it.

That this vignette regarding Pope Boniface IV and the Emperor Phocas is not about the vision of the two popes, Bl. Emmerich also makes clear when above, she says, “When I had witnessed this vision even in the smallest details, I saw again the present Pope.” This put out of any question that the vignette continues in what follows.

She then speaks of the Dark Church or Church of Darkness, as the German original has — I am told. This is significant, because since she has just spoke of the Church of Santa Maria Rotonda, which is very luminous, having a round opening in the ceiling which lets in the light of heaven day and night. This Church of Darkness then has a roof which blocks out the light of heaven, and that is a sign that it is illuminated from below and is not the Church of Christ but that of the Anti-Christ and Satan.

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Bl. Emmerich describes this church of darkness, above, as one without the Sacraments, without an altar, and not even a proper pulpit. She is obviously describing then a place of worship which is not Catholic.

And with her mention of idols, drawn from the breast of each, it becomes clear why she first had the vision of Pope Boniface IV, namely, that the true Catholic Faith removes idols, and the false Church of Darkness restores them. References to Bergoglio’s introduction of Pachamama idolatry in the Church, which came to the fore in October, 2019, but which has been practiced by the St. Gallen Mafia and its allies for some time, could not be more obvious. She descries the Indian demon Kiva (many arms), Pachamama (miserable shrunken limbs).

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The whole church was draped in black. You cannot describe more prophetically the Good Friday service of Bergoglio at the Vatican.

The Blessed also now describes the nature of the crisis: The Church of Darkness has few worshipers but great zeal to promote idolatry. The Church of Christ has many worshipers but no zeal to defend the Faith. This is exactly what we see today.

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She then accurately declares that while idolatry of ignorant pagans was common, many did not do it out of a malign will, but those who abandon the True God for idols are very wicked and have  bad will. This rebukes so many who are silent about the idolatry of Bergoglio and his coterie.

The Blessed then describes exactly what has happened in the last 7 years, the growing tepidity of the clergy who, because they are deceived into thinking Bergoglio is the pope, lose the grace of God day by day for their sins of doing nothing and going along.

Bl. Anne Catherine Emmerich then speaks of the COVID-19 lock-downs, which have closes the Churches all over the world: “I saw in all places Catholics oppressed, annoyed, restricted, and deprived of liberty, churches were closed, and great misery prevailed everywhere …”. And since mystical visions speak of things spiritual, it is not contradictory that she adds “with war and bloodshed”, because the closing of the Churches is killing souls and destroying their spiritual life.

Finally, she mentions the common laypeople of simple faith who resist the lock-downs, speaking of them in the terms which describe such people in their own day.

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Finally, Bl. Emmerich clarifies for us the cause of the crisis: the Masonic Sect, speaking of it in terms which every Catholic in 1820 would recognize. She foretells Our Lady’s intervention and the return of a strong Pope, to succeed the weak pope. Her other visions explain that this intervention will be obtained by Our Lady when She sees enough of the faithful asking for it, at Santa Maria Maggiore, at Midnight. Prayers, that are presently being offered every night.

Thus ends the vision of May 13, 1820.

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Christ or AntiChrist: Who is the Master of your soul?

by Br. Alexis Bugnolo

Since Rousseau there has been promoted in the West a very pernicious error, which has long ago spread to the entire world, namely that we are born just and innocent and good.

The truth rather is found only in the Catholic Faith — capital, F, here to indicate the doctrines of the Holy Roman Church — which make the proper distinctions, distinctions which every man needs to know if he is to save his soul and arrive at eternal life.

Yes, all God has made is good according to its nature, form, being and existence. This include human nature and all human beings. And inasmuch as man is good according to his nature, form, being and existence, God commands the human race to be fruitful and multiply. This regards the natural order.

But moral goodness is a measure of the quality of the will in a rational creature in that will’s conformity to willing what is good, and not just what appears to be good, but what is truly good. Thus we speak of some men who are good and some who are evil, because we speak of how their wills are aligned to good or evil. This regards the moral order.

But the moral order, since it can regard things which are held in the human will, which is a spiritual faculty, is part of the spiritual order. And this spiritual order, inasmuch as it regards spiritual truth or spiritual falsehoods can also be called good or evil.

So Rousseau is correct when speaking of the natural order, and of the moral order of the human person in the womb, or before the use of reason, because not only is a man good according to his nature, form, being and existence, his will is naturally inclined to seek the good.

However, Rousseau is wrong because he denies the spiritual order.

For the truth is, that though we are conceived in a Creation from God which God Himself calls good, and though He calls our nature, very good, nevertheless, we are conceived into Hell.

This is because, on account of the sin of Adam, our race was cast down into subjection to the Father of Lies, Lucifer, the great deceiver, when Adam listened to his deceived wife, Eve, and spurned the will of God and the punishments which God had decreed for the violation of His precept regarding the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

According to the Saints, this was a real Tree, but it also represented a concrete test of Adam and Evil in the spiritual order. By choosing to follow the counsel of Satan, they rejected the supernatural order of grace, in which God had created them, and chose the infernal order of damnation to which the Devil seduced them.

From that point onward, all human beings have been conceived into this same spiritual state. In the Catholic Faith, we call this the state of Original Sin. Here the word, “state”, means status, not a nation.

But few of us consider how horrible this truth is, namely, that we are conceived into Hell, that is, conceived in Original Sin, and into subjection to all the demons of Hell.

This state is not one of possession, because we retain the natural liberty of free will and the natural capacity to exercise that will at all times. (A possessed person retains the former, but not the latter at all times).

We Catholics too often dismiss this horror and horrible state by a misunderstanding of the effects of Baptism. Because we do rightly to rush our newborns to the Font of Salvation and have them delivered by the grace of the Sacrament of Baptism (which in the Old Rite rightly includes several exorcisms) and freed from the stain of Original Sin, justified by Sanctifying Grace and infused with all the theological and moral virtues.

And this motivation and faith is good and true, because there is no hope for man apart from Baptism into Jesus Christ, that is into His Mystical Body, the Catholic Church.

However, there is nearly always forgotten in modern times, that Baptism sanctifies the soul and restores the spiritual order in it, BUT IT DOES  NOT alter the human body, which remains, on account of its conception in original sin, disposed to return to the slavery of the devil.

The grave failure in modern times to attend to this truth of the human body has led to countless horrors, sins and abominations.

This truth of the de facto subjection of the human body to the empire of the devil means, that in its quasi-natural tendencies, our flesh will always incline to sin, vice and disorder.

The Saints teach us this, because they were such examples of fasting, mortification, penances, patience and heroic self punishments. Though they were very holy in soul, they nevertheless did not ignore that their flesh was corrupted in its very conception and that to live in accord with God’s Will it was absolutely necessary that they not only subject it to God’s teaching but that they discipline it, and refuse to follow its inclinations.

This is something we need to remember when judging ourselves.

For we should not presume we are without sin. We should not presume we are properly disposed to receive the Sacraments. We should not presume that our first inclinations or natural states of mind or intention are good.

Rather, we should presume the contrary, have a great circumspection about ourselves.

Even the pagan philosopher, Aristotle, realized this, when he wrote that nearly no man is able to think properly until he is at least 50 years of age, on account of the force of the disordered affections which subject men to the vices of lust, avarice and the desire for power.

The same is true for us as Catholics, though we are baptized, and even when we are in the state of grace. Because the state of grace is no guarantee that our first movements are not disordered.  It is a force that they be properly ordered, but unless we live the life of grace by acts of faith, hope, charity, and mortification and self discipline, these first movements might be quite otherwise.  Only in the great Saints, who were so faithful, that God granted them to pass through a special kind of spiritual purgation, can we say their first inclinations were always spiritually good or at least not evil.

So to sum up, remember that your were conceived into Hell, redeemed by Christ in Baptism, but that your flesh remains inclined to return to the slavery of the Devil, and that, so long as you live, you need to fight against its inclinations to evil.

With this knowledge, discerning the spirit of Christ and the Spirit of the Antichrist is easy:

Christ says: Deny yourself, take up your Cross, and follow Me.

The AntiChrist says:  Affirm yourself, be free, and do as you will.


CREDITS: The Featured Image above is a detail of the very theologically accurate painting of Christ & the Antichrist, by Ilya Glazunov. Though that link you can visit his website and acquire copies of his artistic work. He lives in Russia. This image is used as a free advertisement of his work.

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