Last week, I wrote about how the COVID-19 pandemic has created fear, doubt, uncertainty, and feelings of isolation and loneliness for many of the people of our country. I also wrote about Saint Thomas, the apostle who was told by his fellow apostles that they had seen the risen Lord. Upon hearing the claim that they had seen Jesus, Thomas said, “Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.” John 20:25. Thomas was later chastised by Jesus when He told Thomas, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.” John 20:29.
After I started my law practice in January 1983, one of my first clients was Donna Schmidt. I had met Donna several years earlier when my mom introduced me to her. I don’t remember where we were introduced, but I do remember that it was at a Catholic religious event. Donna was a year younger than my mom. They had known each other since they were teenagers, when they both attended the same high school — the Academy of Our Lady, in Peoria, Illinois.
We recently learned that a newly discovered virus — the “Coronavirus” — was spreading in China. It didn’t take long before other countries began reporting that some of their citizens had been infected with the virus. When I first read about the virus, the thought occurred to me that it would be a good idea to order a box of face masks, just in case the virus got out of control.
Last week, for the first time in more than 10 years, I failed to publish my weekly Adoration Letter. To be precise, after publishing 568 consecutive weekly letters over a period of 10 years and 11 months, I missed one. Yes, I have a “reason,” which is another word for “excuse,” for not writing the letter, but I’m not willing to let myself off the hook.
I ordinarily attend daily Mass at Sacred Heart Church in downtown Peoria. Last Monday (March 25), I saw my parents at noon Mass and talked to them after the Mass. My mom told me that it was the 58th anniversary of her consecration to the Mother of God. I knew that she had made her consecration years ago, but I was not aware of the actual date.
One day while you are driving home from work, you notice a man on the side of the road who appears to be injured. You pull over and check to see if he is all right. You quickly realize that he is in bad shape and is dying. He appears to be in his 70s. He is able to tell you that he was walking on the side of the road and was hit by a large truck that swerved off the road and hit him. The truck then drove away without stopping.
You grab your cell phone from your car and call 911. While you are waiting for help to arrive, the man tells you that his name is Tony, and that he was raised as a Catholic. You quickly take off the Brown Scapular that you always wear around your neck and place it around his neck, fearing that he is going to die before he gets to the hospital. You tell him that you are going to pray an act of contrition with him. You then slowly recite the prayer out loud, so he can follow along with you.
After you’re finished with the prayer, Tony asks you to pass a loving message on to his elderly wife and family. He then tells you that he wants to share two very important secrets with you before he dies. He tells you that both secrets have miraculous attributes. The first secret is an earthly secret and the second is a spiritual secret.
The first secret is the location of what he calls a miraculous cave. The cave he is referring to is the underground cave that’s located in the park. He tells you that if you look in his pocket, you will find a map to the cave. He tells you that if you follow the map, you will find an unlimited supply of gold in the cave. He says that he’s known about the cave since he was a teenager. He found out about it from a man who was on his deathbed.
The miraculous part of the cave is that every time you remove gold, the next time you return to the cave, the gold that you removed has not only been replaced, but there’s an additional amount of gold that has been added to the supply that was previously there. For example, if you remove 10 pounds of gold from the cave, when you return there will be 12 pounds of gold in the place where you removed the 10 pounds.
Tony warns you that you will be tempted to share the secret with members of your family, knowing that the gold will never run out. He warns you that most people are not ready to handle the riches that they would be able to acquire from the cave. He also tells you that if too many people learn about the cave, the government will find out about it and close it down.
Tony then tells you the second secret, after which he asks you to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet with him. Before you are finished praying the chaplet, Tony passes away.
The day after Tony dies, you meet with his wife and family to pass on his message of love. You then get in your car and follow the map to the underground cave. You are shocked to find out that everything Tony told you was true. You load up your car with gold, take it home, and hide it in your basement.
The next day you go back to the cave and the gold that you took the previous day has been replaced with more gold than you loaded into your car. The only person you tell about the miraculous cave is your wife, who assures you that she will never tell anyone.
Over the course of the next five years, it’s as though you are living in paradise. You and your wife are able to provide your young children with everything that they could ever want. Each year, you take your family on a new “vacation of a lifetime.” On the five-year anniversary of the day that you learned the secret from the dying man, you are involved in the same type of accident that he was involved in. As a result of your injuries, both of your legs have to be amputated. You quickly realize that all the gold in the world cannot help you get your legs back.
You are angry, depressed, and resentful. How could this happen to you? You had everything going for you. You and your family were set for life. For the next year, you suffer under the torment of what could have been. You have nightmares of the accident that ruined your life.
Because of your despair, your wife insists that you begin attending daily Mass with her. The first day that you go to daily Mass, the priest announces that the day is October 7, the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary. Upon hearing the priest’s announcement, for the first time since Tony told you the two secrets, you remember the second secret. Tears start streaming down your face because when Tony told you the second secret, he emphasized that before you took advantage of the first secret, you were required to put the first secret into practice.
What was the second secret? It was what Tony called “the best-kept secret in the Catholic Church.” Tony started out by telling you about the miraculous power that the Blessed Mother was given to influence our daily lives, which is triggered by the recitation of the daily Rosary. He told you that if you remained in the state of grace and prayed the Rosary every day while doing your best to meditate on its mysteries, the Mother of God would arrange for an abundance of additional grace to flow to you every day from Almighty God.
He emphasized that the grace that you received would work the same way that the gold worked — that each time you received grace as a result of the intercession of the Blessed Mother, like the gold in the cave, the grace that was sent to you would be replaced with more grace than you received.
He said that each subsequent day, you would not only receive the same amount of grace that you received the previous day, but you would also receive the additional grace that was added when the previous day’s grace was replaced. He said that as the grace increased each day, it would begin to flow through you to your wife, your children, your parents, and your siblings. Tony emphasized the fact that the cumulative grace that you would receive each day would be far superior to the material gold that you would be able to collect from the cave.
After your experience at Mass and your recollection of the second miraculous secret, you make a promise to God that you will do your best to attend Mass every day and that you and your family will pray a Rosary every day. Over time, your anger, depression, and despair dissipate and you begin to have hope again for your future and the future of your family. You also begin to see the extraordinary effects of the great grace that flows to you and your family each day as a result of this new daily prayer ritual. You never get your legs back, but you end up with something much more valuable — a guarantee that you and your family will eventually spend eternity with God, His mother, and all the angels and saints.
Although there is no such thing as a miraculous cave, the secret of the Rosary is genuine and real. Miraculous graces really will descend upon you and through you to the members of your family when you develop a relationship with the Mother of God by praying her daily Rosary.
I was fortunate to have a mother who taught me the secret of the Rosary when I was a boy. Although I didn’t put the secret into practice until I was out of college, I can tell you from what I have observed in my own life and the lives of the members of my family who have implemented this secret, that it works exactly the way I just described it. If you are skeptical about this miraculous prayer, all I ask is that you suspend your disbelief for one year and follow the secret for the next 365 days. I can guarantee you that you will experience the great power of the Rosary as well as the Blessed Mother’s eagerness to assist you and your family.
She then told them that war is a punishment from God for the sins of mankind. She warned that if her requests for prayer and reparation were not heeded, “good people will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, [and] various nations will be annihilated.” Her appearances occurred during World War I, which began in July 1914 and ended in November 1918.
Despite our Lady’s warning, the sins of the flesh accelerated. The most egregious of those sins was the sin of contraception, which became much easier to engage in because of the invention and mass production of the latex condom, which began in 1929. The newly developed processes for manufacturing and distribution produced thousands of condoms per week, which allowed couples to have easy access to affordable birth control that was never available to them before.
Despite prohibitions against contraception that were in place within the Christian and Catholic communities, there was widespread acceptance among Christians and Catholics of this new form of birth control. Although couples knew better than to practice contraception, the latex condom provided couples with a way to experience the pleasure of sex without the sacrifices associated with pregnancy, birth, and the raising of children to adulthood.
Within a generation of the introduction of the latex condom, the majority of Christian and Catholic couples were practicing contraception.
The sin of contraception is so grievous that the Catholic Church has always taught that it is a mortal sin that cuts off the sanctifying grace that a couple needs for their marriage and their family. All methods of contraception (the condom, the pill, sterilization, etc.) have the same effect — the breaking of the link between sex and procreation.
When God created man and woman, He gave them a special gift that allowed them to “connect” in an intimate and spiritual way — a connection that we now understand includes the participation of the Holy Spirit. This special connection occurs only when the gift of sex is open to new life and is utilized within the framework of marriage.
According to the Book of Genesis, the first command that was given by God to Adam and Eve was, “Be fruitful and multiply.” In order to comply with God’s wishes, Adam and Eve were given the gift of sex. With this gift, they were given the knowledge that the primary purpose of sex was for procreation.
The Mother of God’s prophecy that the world would have much to suffer if the sins of the flesh continued was fulfilled in 1939, 10 years after the introduction of the latex condom. That’s when World War II began. The war didn’t end until six years later (1945). As a result of the war, tens of millions of civilians and soldiers were killed, and millions more were wounded.
So what has happened in the 70-plus years since the end of World War II? Have the people of the world repented, prayed for guidance, and changed their lives. The answer is no. Today, we have more sexual sins than ever, which include very reliable forms of contraception, millions of abortions each year, rampant premarital sex and adultery, pornography that is available to anyone who has access to a smartphone, homosexual and transgender behavior that is being forced upon our society, and other forms of deviant sexual perversion such as new technology that will provide sex robots to anyone who wants them.
With all the sins of the flesh that are currently taking place in our modern society, how is it that we’ve been able to avoid another world war? Why hasn’t the world been punished like it was with World War I and World War II?
In my opinion, the reason that God has not allowed another world war to occur is because while the sin of contraception was freely and voluntarily accepted and engaged in by tens of millions of couples in violation of God’s laws, the sins of abortion and homosexual marriage were legalized, endorsed, and forced upon us by the U.S. Supreme Court.
The people of our country did not freely and voluntarily choose to legalize abortion on demand and homosexual marriage on a national level. If abortion and homosexual marriage had been left to the people to decide on a national level, they would have had to vote for a constitutional amendment that legalized abortion and homosexual marriage. The legalization of abortion and homosexual marriage was forced upon our country by seven evil judges on the U.S. Supreme Court.
It is my belief that if the people of our country had voted to legalize abortion in 1973 instead of the law being unexpectedly changed by five judges on the U.S. Supreme Court, God would have allowed an extremely harsh punishment to occur, such as another world war. If that had happened, millions of American lives would have been lost.
The same holds true for the elimination of God from the public schools and public institutions, which only occurred because a handful of judges on the U.S. Supreme Court decided that God had no role to play in our lives and the lives of our children.
In His mercy, Almighty God has so far spared our country from the massive suffering that would take place in a modern-day war in which biological and nuclear weapons would be used against our population and our country.
Unlike World Wars I and II where our military engaged in battles that occurred in countries other than the United States, we wouldn’t be that fortunate if there were another world war. There is no doubt that if another world war were to take place today, there would be massive destruction of large sections of our country.
As a result of God’s infinite mercy, we now have five judges on the U.S. Supreme Court who we hope will put a stop to the imposition of new evil laws upon the more than 325 million Americans who have no vote on the Supreme Court. Those justices are John Roberts (conservative Catholic), Clarence Thomas (conservative Catholic), Samuel Alito (conservative Catholic), Neil Gorsuch (conservative Episcopalian who was raised Catholic) and Brett Kavanaugh (conservative Catholic).
There’s a good reason that the forces of evil were unleashed against Judge Brett Kavanaugh when he was nominated to replace retired Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court. Kavanaugh’s enemies knew that if he was allowed to become a Supreme Court Justice, their ability to impose their diabolical laws on our country would be curtailed.
Over the next couple of years, another opportunity may arise for our president to appoint another judge to the U.S. Supreme Court. If that happens, there’s a good chance that we will have six out of nine Supreme Court Justices who will refuse to allow the forces of evil to impose their diabolical laws on our country. The court may even reverse some of the evil laws that were previously imposed on us.
We must remain vigilant in praying that we will someday be able to restore the Judeo-Christian laws, values, and beliefs that once dominated our society.
The lawsuit was filed because the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission launched an investigation after a complaint was filed by a transgender woman who was denied access to the Hope Center. The lawsuit is asking a federal judge to overturn a city ordinance as unconstitutional because it violates the religious beliefs of the individuals who run the shelter.
Here’s how the Hope Center described its dilemma in the lawsuit that was filed with the court:
It would not only be dangerous and against common sense, but it would violate the Hope Center’s sincerely held religious beliefs to admit biological men into its shelter and allow them to sleep side by side and disrobe next to women, some of whom have been assaulted by men and fear for their safety.
It was 2 a.m. Monday morning. Dr. Kenny Omlin of Napa was in the process of getting his family off their 11-acre estate as flames from the Atlas Fire rapidly approached. He opened his car door and saw his 80-year-old mother sitting in the passenger seat, clutching a rosary and praying.