The Story of Knock
On the 21st August, 1879, at about 8 o’clock, Our Lady, St. Joseph, and St. John the Evangelist, together with an altar on which stood a cross and a Lamb; appeared in a blaze of Heavenly light at the gable wall of the parish church of Knock, Co. Mayo. Fifteen people witnessed the apparition over a period of two hours. Our Lady was in an attitude of prayer and supplication, looking up towards Heaven; St. Joseph bowed his head respectfully towards Our Lady and St. John the Evangelist appeared as a bishop in the act of earnestly preaching; looking both towards the altar and Our Blessed Lady. No words were spoken; for no words were needed. It appeared as if Our Lady interceded with God for the Irish people, St. Joseph encouraged us to trust Our Blessed Mother and St. John preached silently to us to heed the Mother of God and to rely on the graces which are poured out on faithful souls from the sacrifice of Jesus Christ on Calvary, as clearly shown by the presence of the altar, the Lamb and the cross.
The Catholic Mass
is nothing other than the one and same Sacrifice which Jesus Christ Himself offered to His Father on Calvary; offered again to God by the priest in order to atone for the sins of men. At that central moment of history, God the Father looked upon this Sacrifice being offered for the sins of men. Unlike the sacrifice of calves, goats, lambs etc. offered by the Jews to atone for sin, this Victim was a man who was man and God in one person! Only this Sacrifice was sufficient to atone for the sins of men. It was for this reason that Jesus Christ; the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity, came into the world; to offer Himself as the Sacrifice by which men are reunited to God (John, 18:37). This mystery, the mystery of our redemption, the mystery of the Mass, is central to our existence and our happiness. Through the sacrifice of Our Saviour come all the graces (or helps) we need in life. By remaining in a state of friendship with God and availing of these graces we do not have to rely on ourselves alone; rather we have God Himself to help us through the difficulties of life. How wonderful! Consequently, the daily struggle against sin and even the hardships and tragedies of life are so much easier to bear because we transcend them through our love for God and His love and assistance to us.
God is our loving father…
At Baptism, we really become children of God and members of His Catholic Church. God is a Father who loves us more than the best human father can love his children. God created us out of nothing so that we would be happy forever with Him in Heaven. Heaven can be ours if we return this love which God gives us. Jesus told us that we are called to be the children of God and heirs to the kingdom of Heaven!
As our Father, God gives us everything we need, if we ask Him. But because He is a loving Father, He commands us to avoid what harms us and tells us to do what is good for us.
The Church is our spiritual family…
The Church is the Mystical Body of Christ, founded by Christ Himself, and our home here on earth. The Church is likened to a ship heading to holiness, which unites us to God — we must be on board in order to arrive safely at our destination, which is happiness with God, in this life and forever in Heaven.
The Church gives us the priest…
The priest is a man like all of us, a sinner who can make mistakes. However, he is also someone designated by God to stand between sinful men and the Good God; to offer the sacrifice of Christ on our behalf; and, through his actions, to bring all men the supernatural gifts of God. These gifts include the Sacraments, which are God’s supernatural helps for us in our lives. The priest also feeds our souls and helps us in our daily challenges by his teaching and explaining the Catholic faith. When the priest, who is anointed as an alter Christus (another Christ) performs his duties diligently, he brings down from God the integral solution for a happy way of life on earth and eternal salvation at the end of this earthly life.
We have witnessed in Ireland, like the rest of the world; a catastrophic decline in the Faith in the past fifty years. Without the grace of God and without the truth of faith to guide us, many people have put money and pleasures first and, sadly, reap disastrous results by their indifference to God, His Doctrine and Law: casual and multiple relationships rather than a stable and holy marriage; divorce and the break up of families; apathy, depression and suicide; greed, selfishness and a lack of generosity; idleness and crime; the abuse of alcohol and drugs, etc.
Our ancestors endured dungeon, fire and sword because they were unwilling to relinquish the most-precious gift handed down to them from St Patrick, the Catholic Faith.
But where did this “car crash” in the Catholic Church come from? It came from the disastrous action of a cohort of liberal bishops at the Second Vatican Council, who did the unthinkable: to erroneously reconcile the Church of Christ to liberal ideas, which contradict the perennial teaching of Christ and the Catholic Church for 2,000 years.
“We have lived to see the marriage of the Catholic Church with Liberal ideas. It would be to deny the evidence, to be willfully blind, not to state courageously that the Council has allowed those who profess the errors and tendencies condemned by the popes .., legitimately to believe that their doctrines were approved and sanctioned…. Thus, driven to this by the facts, we are forced to conclude that the Council has encouraged, in an inconceivable manner, the spreading of Liberal errors. Faith, morals, and ecclesiastical discipline are shaken to their foundations, fulfilling the predictions of all the popes. The destruction of the Church is advancing at a rapid pace.”
(Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre to Cardinal Ottaviani December 20th 1966).
The root of the contemporary problems of Church and society at large lie greatly in the changes made in Church Teaching and Morality over the last fifty years. These include especially the suppression of the ancient Mass of all time and the watering down of Catholic teaching, which have had the dire results of many Catholics being malnourished by an adulterated creed, one which fails to uphold (or even by omission denies!) the very fundamentals of the Christian life.
How many know and truly believe in the awesome reality of Baptism? This Sacrament cleanses the soul of original sin, infused divine grace (the life of God) and makes men the adopted children of God and heirs to His Kingdom. How many know about Sanctifying Grace? The great gift of Baptism whereby God Himself dwells in our soul. How many are aware of the reality of mortal sin? Any transgression of God’s Commandments, in a serious matter, with full knowledge and full consent, evicts God from our soul. Sin is essentially a rejection of God for a creature — we say “I prefer this created good to the Creator.” How many have a healthy and salutary fear of Hell? In God’s mercy, Hell is a reminder to us that should we be so unfortunate as to die in a state of mortal sin we will most certainly endure an eternity of unimaginable torment, forever separated from God. How many see the immense joy and liberation of Confession? – the restoration of the soul back to God, and what about the True Presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament? The list could go on and on…
Here in Ireland there are priests who DO still preach the faith of Christ unashamedly and offer the same Sacrifice of the Mass which Saint Patrick and Saint Oliver Plunkett did. Do you want to know more about them? You may visit the listed centres below or visit www.sspx.ie.
|Corpus Christi Priory
|St John’s Church in Dublin
St. John’s Presbytery,
1 Upper Mounttown Road,
|Our Lady of the Rosary Church
Shanakiel RoadSunday’s Well,
|Our Lady of Knock and St. Patrick Chapel,
Unit 5, Richbrook Business Park,
|St. Pius V Chapel,
78, Andersonstown Road,
|Phone: Dublin: (01) 2809407
Phone: Athlone: (090) 649 2439
APPENDIX: THE CHURCH IN CRISIS; THE IMPORTANCE OF TRADITION: SOME QUOTES
St. Paul to the Galatians 1:8:“But though we, or an angel from Heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preaches to you, let him be anathema”.
Pope St. Stephen I; third Century A.D.:“Let them innovate in nothing, but keep the tradition”.
Saint Athanasius; died 373 A.D.:“No one, my beloved brethren, will ever prevail against your Faith. And we are confident that God will one day return our churches to us”.
Saint Athanasius; died 373 A.D.:“You are fortunate, you have remained in the Church through your faith. You hold fast to the foundations of the faith which has come down to you from the Apostolic Tradition…In the present crisis, it is they who have broken away from it.”
Saint Hippolytus (3rd Century):“And now, through the love which He had for all the saints, having come to our most important topic we turn to the subject of the tradition which is proper for the churches, in order that those who have been rightly instructed may hold fast to the tradition which has continued until now, and fully understanding it …. may stand the more firmly therein…”
St. Isidore (7th Century):“Therefore, heresy is from the Greek word meaning ‘choice’… but we are not permitted to believe whatever we choose, not to choose whatever someone else has believed. We have the Apostles of God as authorities who did not choose what they would believe but faithfully transmitted the teachings of Christ. So, even if an angel from heaven should preach otherwise, he shall be called anathema.”
Saint Vincent of Lerins (died circa 445 A.D.):“What then shall the Catholic do if some portion of the church detaches itself from communion of the universal Faith? What other choice can he make – and if some new contagion attempts to poison, no longer a small part of the Church, but the whole Church at once, then his great concern will be to attach himself to antiquity which can no longer be led astray by any lying novelty.”
St. Thomas Aquinas; died 1274:“Hold firmly that our Faith is identical with that of the Ancients. Deny this and you dissolve the unity of the Church”.
Cardinal Parocchi, Italian churchman, 1884:“The world knows no longer, nor does it wish to know anything beyond purely material things. It is insensible to the beauties of faith, no longer places its hopes in a future existence, turns its back even on the Almighty Himself. Say to men these days: souls must be saved which are in danger of perishing, people who know nothing about the fundamental ideas of religion must be instructed, alms bestowed on the needy for love of that God who will richly reward some day those who show generosity – you will soon discover you are speaking to them in a language they no longer understand… “
Pope Leo XIII, On The Education of the Clergy, 8th September 1899:“In the face of the combined efforts of incredulity and heresy to consummate the ruin of the Catholic faith, it would be a real crime for the clergy to remain in a state of hesitancy and inactivity. In such an out-pouring of error and conflict of opinion he must not prove faithless to his mission, which is to defend dogma assaulted, morality travestied and justice frequently outraged. It is for him to oppose himself as a barrier to the attacks of error and the deceits of heresy; to watch the tactics of the wicked who war on the faith…; to unmask their plots and reveal their ambuscades; to warn the confiding, strengthen the timid and open the eyes of the blinded. Superficial erudition or merely common knowledge will not suffice for all this – there is need of study, solid, profound and continuous, in a word of a mass of doctrinal knowledge sufficient to cope with the subtlety and remarkable cunning of our modern opponents.”
Pope Saint Pius X Pascendi Dominici Gregis (8th September 1907):“Undoubtedly, were anyone to attempt the task of collecting together all the errors that have been broached against the Faith and to concentrate into one sap and substance of them all, he could not succeed in doing so better than the Modernists have done. Nay, they have gone farther than this, for ….. their system means the destruction not of the Catholic religion alone, but all religion.”
Our Lady, the Mother of Jesus Christ; at Fatima, Portugal; 1917:“You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to My Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will be saved and there will be peace. The war is going to end; but if people do not cease offending God, a worse war will break out during the reign of Pius XI. When you see a night illuminated by an unknown light, know that this is the great sign given you by God that He is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions against the Church and against the Holy Father. To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If My requests are heeded, Russia will be converted and there will be peace; if not; she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions against the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, various nations will be annihilated. In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, and she will be converted, and a period of peace will be granted to the world.”
Pope Pius XII; a few days before his death in 1958: “The day the Church abandons Her universal tongue will be the day before She returns to the Catacombs”.
Pope Paul VI, The Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, 29th June 1972, less than seven years after the close of the Second Vatican Council:“From some fissure the smoke of Satan has entered the temple of God”. The Pope’s words appeared to be a very clear warning that the Catholic Church has taken the wrong path and that some people, taken with the “spirit of Vatican II” had fallen under the sway of dark spirits.
Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre, Former Archbishop of Dakar and Apostolic Delegate of Pope Pius XII to all of French – speaking Africa, Former global Superior of the Holy Ghost Fathers and Founder of the Society of St. Pius X; died 1991:“The higher they come from the more scandals provoke disasters. Certainly, the Church itself guards its sanctity and its sources of sanctification, but the control of its institutions by unfaithful popes and apostate bishops ruins the faith of the faithful and the clergy, sterliizes the instruments of grace, and favours the assault of all the powers of Hell which seem to triumph. This apostasy makes its members adulterers, schismatics opposed to all Tradition, separated from the Church of today, in the measure that it remains faithful to the Church of Our Lord. Everyone who remains faithful to the true Church is the object of savage and continuous persecution.”
Pope Benedict XVI; during the sermon given during the Mass of Corpus Christi, Thursday 22nd May 2008 in the square before the basilica of St. John Lateran:“To kneel before the Eucharist is to profess our liberty: he who kneels before Jesus cannot and must not prostrate before any earthly power, no matter how strong it may be,” and he added: “we Christians, kneel only before the blessed Sacrament, because in it we know and believe that we are in the presence of the only true God, who created the world, and loves it to the point of giving it His only Son.” At the time of Communion in that Mass, the faithful who received the sacred host from the hand of the pope, were invited to kneel on a prie-Dieu and receive on the tongue. In this respect, on several occasions, Archbishop Albert Malcolm Ranjith, secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments has recalled that “the Mass is not a show”, and pointed out that communion in the hand “should be a practise to revise”: “I am convinced of the urgency of giving once more the host directly in the mouth of the faithful without their touching it,” and “of returning to the practise of genuflecting for communion as a sign of respect”.
Published by the
Legion of St. Joseph