Dear Friends of the Kolbe Center,
Glory to Jesus Christ!
This will be the last in a series of four newsletters in which we will have meditated on the importance of the physical connection that links every human being on Earth to God our Creator through our first parents St. Adam and St. Eve and their descendants, as recorded in the sacred history of Genesis.
To begin this final reflection, it may be helpful to make an analogy between the ways that people lose physical trails and become lost and the ways that souls lose the spiritual pathways marked out for them by Catholic Tradition. It may then be helpful to make another analogy between those who find their way back to a trail in the wilderness and those who regain the spiritual pathway that connects them to God and their first parents in the past, and to Our Lord Jesus Christ and the Blessed Virgin Mary our Mother, the New Adam and the New Eve, at the end of the road to Heaven.
Lost and Found
We saw last time that most of those who lose a trail in the wilderness follow a “false trail” because they are not careful to stay on the path that has been marked out for them. These are like those Catholics down through the centuries who reject those parts of what has been handed down “in word or letter” that are not to their liking (II Thes 2:15) and so drift away from the path that their fathers in the Faith marked out for them.
We saw that a smaller number of those who lose a trail in the wilderness literally “fall off” the trail and cannot find their way back no matter how hard they try. They are like those Catholics who face a difficult test of obedience and fail and cannot find their way back to obedience—either because they are too proud or stubborn to repent or because they are too ignorant of the Faith to understand the reason for the teaching they failed to obey and the necessity of obedience to that teaching.
We saw last time, that the “lost” sheep easily becomes disoriented and misinterprets his location in time and space—"he rarely travels more than 100 meters in one direction”—although he may think that he has traveled many miles in one direction. He may have been lost for three days and begin to think that it has been three weeks. The longer he is off the trail, the more likely he is to inflate the period of time since he lost his way. It is the same with those who lose their link to God our Creator, through our first parents and the patriarchs. It is easy for them to believe in long ages of time between the creation of the world and the advent of the first human beings because they have lost their direct link to the beginning.
But what can we say about those who are rescued and about those who rescue them?
According to one expert in search and rescue, 77% of lost hikers in North America are rescued by a search and rescue team; the rest find a way out of the wilderness on their own.
We could say that those who are rescued by a search and rescue team are like those who are called back to the right path through evangelization. A stunning example would be the evangelization of the Karen Tribe in what is now Myanmar by evangelist Adoniram Judson:
...[Adoniram] Judson canoed down the Salween River back into the jungle to a tribe called the Karen, whose pagan traditions were strangely amenable to the gospel—they had a Creator of man, and woman from his rib; an ancient temptation and fall; expectation of a white man’s appearance with a sacred parchment. Breakthrough. When Adoniram Judson died, there were 8,000 believers and 100 churches in Burma, which today, known as Myanmar, has the third-largest population of Baptists in the world, mostly the Karen and Kachin tribe. (Andree’ Seu, “Gospel Cyclone,” World (May 31/June 7, 2008).
Granted, we can lament the fact that the Karen were “re-connected” to our first parents and to the Creator of the world by our separated brethren rather than by Catholic missionaries. Yet we can rejoice that the “re-connection” was made; and that the Karen retained a memory of the events recorded in the sacred history of Genesis so as to be able to hear the voice of the Good Shepherd calling them back to the path of life. Most of all, we must pray for the day when the Holy Ghost will fully “in-graft” the Karen into the Family of God by bringing them into full communion with the one, holy, Catholic and apostolic Church.
But what of those who “find their own way out” after losing a trail through the wilderness?
We could say that those who “find their own way out” by regaining the trail on their own are like the Prodigal Son, souls who learned the traditional Faith in their youth and wandered away from it, but who receive the grace to repent, perhaps through the reading of a good Catholic book or DVD, or even through attendance at a reverent traditional Holy Mass. According to the Parable, the Prodigal Son “came to himself” while herding pigs and resolved to “return” to his father, retracing his steps. One of the most poignant and important details in the parable then arises when Our Lord says that the Father sees the Prodigal Son from afar. This suggests that the Prodigal Son has descended physically and spiritually to a low-lying place, but that the Father continues to look for him continuously from his home on the heights. Our Lord goes on to say that when the Prodigal Son is still far away—perhaps at the foot of the mountain from whose heights his father looks for him—the Father runs to greet him. In a similar way, we can be sure that Our Heavenly Father looks after all of his children, wherever they may be, and that when we return to the path that leads to Him, He runs to greet us!
“Stay on the Same Road Your Pious Fathers Trod”
One of the greatest saints of the fifteenth century was the patron saint of Switzerland, St. Nicholas of Fluh, known, affectionately, as “Bruder Klaus.” While attending a conference at Gustav Siewerth Akademie in Germany on “Evolution and the Sciences: A Critical Examination,” in 2009, the priest-brother of Dr. Alma Von Stockhausen, Fr. Dietrich von Stockhausen, took one of my sons and me and two other friends of his to visit the shrine of Bruder Klaus.
A Swiss soldier, husband, and father turned hermit, St. Nicholas of Fluh achieved a permanent place of honor in the history of Switzerland by successfully mediating between rival cantons and averting a civil war. St. Nicholas survived for many years on the Holy Eucharist alone, possessed the gift of miracles, and foretold both the Protestant Revolution in Switzerland and an even more serious crisis of faith in the more distant future. Regarding the Protestant uprising, he foretold:
There will come a time when another faith begins, and blessed will be those who bravely reject it . . . There will be a change of religion so near to Obwald that you will be able to take water to it in a jug held with one finger.
Within fifty years, the neighboring Canton of Berne abandoned the Catholic Faith, fulfilling the saint’s prediction to the letter. St. Nicholas foresaw an even greater crisis of faith in the more distant future.
An unhappy time is coming of revolt and dissension in the Church. Oh my children, do not let yourselves be led astray by innovations. Rally and hold fast. Stay on the same road, the same footpaths as your pious fathers trod. Preserve and maintain what they have taught you. It will be enough if you resist the attacks, the tempests, the hurricanes that will arise with such violence.
The Church will be punished because the majority of her members, high and low, will become so perverted. The Church will sink deeper and deeper until she will at last seem to be extinguished, and the succession of Peter and the Apostles to have expired. But, after this, She will be victoriously exalted in the sight of all doubters.
Below Bruder Klaus’s family farmstead, deep in a beautiful gorge, lies an old Catholic Church and, attached to the church, stands the cell from which Bruder Klaus could assist at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, adore the Blessed Sacrament, and receive Holy Communion through a small opening. After we had venerated these holy places, Fr. von Stockhausen took us to a restaurant overlooking the gorge where St. Nicholas von Fluh had given so much glory to God. To our amazement, he pointed out a hotel that stood close to the restaurant, where he informed us that none other than Vladimir Lenin had stayed during World War I, awaiting the right moment to return to Russia in secret to ignite the Bolshevik Revolution. So did the holiness of Bruder Klaus, revealed in his hidden life at the very bottom of that magnificent gorge, stand in total contrast to the satanic pride of Vladimir Lenin, ensconced in his hotel room on the heights overlooking the valley.
Lenin had been baptized, chrismated and communed as an Orthodox Christian, but, having read the works of Darwin, he lost his faith in Christianity, embraced the scientific “fact” of molecules-to-man-evolution, and became an atheist. On his desk he kept a statue of a chimpanzee, sitting on a pile of books—one of which was Darwin’s Origin of Species—contemplating a human skull. As he sat at that desk, Lenin authorized the murder of millions of his fellow countrymen because they stood in the way of evolutionary progress. His successor at the helm of the communist regime in Russia, Josef Stalin, had been an Orthodox seminarian when he read the works of Darwin and Lyell and lost his faith. Stalin expanded the murderous social engineering programs of his predecessor and brought death to 20 million or more human beings who stood in the way of evolutionary progress to his communist utopia. Meanwhile, as prophesied by Our Lady of Fatima, the “errors of Russia,” especially evolution, spread to China, where Mao-Tse Tung renounced traditional Chinese philosophy in favor of communism and announced that “The foundation of Chinese Socialism rests on Darwin and the theory of evolution.”
Stay on the same road, the same footpaths as your pious fathers trod.
If only Vladimir Lenin and his fellow communists, the communists and freemasons of our day, the protestant revolutionaries, and the fathers of the so-called Enlightenment had heeded that warning! Yet through the DVD series “Foundations Restored,” through our website, and through our other videos and publications, many of our brothers and sisters around the world are being led back to the path “our pious fathers trod,” consecrating themselves to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and helping to hasten that day when, in the words of “Bruder Klaus,” the Church “will be victoriously exalted in the sight of all doubters.”
Yours in Christ through the Immaculata in union with St. Joseph,
P.S. Today is a First Saturday. To review Our Lady of Fatima's urgent request for keeping the First Saturday, please go to this link at the Fatima Center website.
P.P.S. In the article at this link and in other places, we have demonstrated that all of the authentic liturgical traditions of the Catholic Church teach the traditional doctrine of creation and the literal historical truth of the sacred history of Genesis. Not surprisingly, a specious claim is being made by some Church leaders who have embraced evolution-based modernism that Catholics who love the Traditional Latin Mass in particular are snobs and elitists. Testimonies are urgently needed from priests, religious and lay faithful to the fact that it is often the simple and the poor, not the rich, academically educated, Catholics throughout the world who love the traditional Mass of the Roman Rite as well as the traditional liturgies of the other approved rites of the Church. If any of our readers can offer testimonies along these lines, I will forward them to a team of journalists who are collecting evidence to prove that the war on the Traditional Latin Mass is actually a war on the poor, and especially on the poorest of the poor.