In Apocalyptic Battle Between Light And Dark, There Is The Intercession Of Saints
By Michael H. Brown
It is that day when even distant sounds, the vague mechanics of a factory, the murmur of traffic on a highway, on our roads, seem almost mournful, lending this time called Halloween their faraway moan. It is a spiritual time, like the middle of the night, like three a.m., when the veil parting physical from the spiritual is thinnest -- almost rent -- and there is a direct juxtaposition between good and evil.
It is now also a societal metaphor: much of the world, the world without Christ, has been plunged into darkness. This is not a negative thought but rather a realistic one. It is seen in the images of this day -- and in recent times, of every day. It is seen in the very nature of Halloween, which during the last seven years has grown from a $3.5-billion industry in the United States to over $9 billion annually, with the costumes becoming increasingly demonic and witches, real ones, once confined to their covens, now out there in the open: in Lewiston, New York, welcomed openly by the business association and politicians at the annual Pumpkin Festival, as if it is just fun and games, which it is not.
At Medjugorje the Blessed Mother called our time "the hour of the power of darkness" and in 1991 said that "now, as never before, Satan wants to show the world his shameful face by which he wants to seduce as many people as possible." Those who think that is overly dramatic need only know that Pope John Paul II -- our witness to hope -- has warned that we are living during an "apocalyptic" battle between good and evil, between "the Church and the anti-Church," as he put it.
There is the road to victory, however, and that is to confront evil as Jesus confronted it, as the apostles confronted it. Look at today's Mass reading: "Draw your strength from the Lord and from his mighty power. Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens. Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day and, having done everything, to hold your ground."
When we start to move in that direction, when we arm ourselves, and confront evil, instead of ignoring the issue, and hiding from it, we will shine the Light of victory; we will split this present and growing darkness.
We are all ministers of deliverance when we pray and especially when we invoke the saints. Is there any better example of the juxtaposition than the fact that Halloween, the day of the devils, is followed by the march of All Saints' Day, which proclaims God's swift victory? But that victory depends on us all. As a bishop once said at Medjugorje, "There already exist exorcism prayers, which the priests pray, but everybody can help free people from the influence of Satan. We must call on the name of Jesus, the intercession of the saints, especially the Blessed Virgin Mary. It's important to pray the Rosary." This archbishop added: "I know that some satanic sects exist with the sole purpose of fasting for the breakdown of families. In the world, there are various satanic organizations which try to destroy individuals and families."
It's time for us to break that. It's time for us to come against evil, which is far less powerful than good except when, as now, the good hide themselves.
"Drugs, divorce, everything that is bad in the world -- these are all the things that are attacking families," notes seer Vicka Ivankovic in a book by journalist Heather Parsons (Vicka: Touched by a Mother's Love). "That attack becomes stronger every day, Our Lady says, because the windows and the doors of our homes are open to Satan, and we don't do anything to defend ourselves. Our Lady says that Satan uses every free moment for himself -- and he does this most of all on the young people of today because he wants to destroy our families."
"That is why Our Lady emphasizes so often that we begin again to pray in the family, to pray the Rosary together. With prayer and fasting, we can change our families, defend our children. She has told us this. But it is up to us to decide whether we receive this message from her and live it."
For this reason, we have urged recitation of the Scriptural Rosary [see below], as well as a powerful novena to the Archangel Michael, Stís Michaelís Shield, available in the SpiritDaily Bookstore. The saints are potent when it comes to spiritual warfare. They see things we can't see. They know the dynamics of the spiritual world. And they surround us like a shield. I remember as one of my most powerful prayer days ever spending the day at Our Lady of Fatima Shrine in Youngstown, New York, reciting a Rosary before each and every statue they have there of saints (and believe me, there are dozens). The saints never forgot it.
St. Michael! St. George! St. Pio! St. Benedict! St. Jude! St. Matthew! St. John! St. Charbel! St. Francis!
Nobody should be afraid. Priests must begin to preach about the existence of the dark side, and how to expel it. They must stop avoiding the issue. They must strengthen their faith. They must transmit the real power of the saints, noted the archbishop "We must teach the people to praise God the Father, the Holy Spirit and to venerate the Blessed Virgin," he said. "We must teach the people to live the sacraments and that there is no reason to fear. But rather, we must pray and love."
Brothers and sisters:
Draw your strength from the Lord and from his mighty power.
Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the Devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens.
Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day and, having done everything, to hold your ground.
So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate,
and your feet shod in readiness for the Gospel of peace.In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield,to quench all the flaming arrows of the Evil One.
And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit,which is the word of God.
With all prayer and supplication,pray at every opportunity in the Spirit. To that end, be watchful with all perseverance and supplication for all the holy ones and also for me,
that speech may be given me to open my mouth,to make known with boldness the mystery of the Gospel for which I am an ambassador in chains, so that I may have the courage to speak as I must.
See also Scriptural Rosary and Deliverance from Evil Spirits available in our bookstore
Scriptural Rosary: A Powerhouse Of Grace And A Source Of The Miraculous
By Michael H. Brown
We're finally able to make available what I believe is the most powerful prayer outside the actual Eucharist. It's called the Scriptural Rosary, and through the last 15 years I've seen it cause tremendous results. I've prayed it around the world, and have worn out several of them. They're so valuable I keep them as relics. I have personally found it to be more powerful than saying the Rosary with standard beads and perhaps this is because it's a more extensive Rosary. It has a meditation not just for every mystery but for every single prayer -- and the results are potent.
Whenever there's a problem, and especially if it's a severe problem, an immediate recitation of this powerful prayer brings clarity. It takes about 45 minutes and is worth every second. I like to start the day with it, and on the rare occasions when I can't, things don't go as smoothly. The Rosary dispels anxiety and brings you immediately to what's important. It puts things in perspective. It has always amazed me how things that concern me suddenly vanish during recitation or how answers dawn on me. It grants us an exit when we're boxed into a corner.
I have prayed it in deepest Africa; I've prayed it in zones of war. I've prayed it over people who were dying or extremely ill. I've prayed it in New Zealand and Tokyo and Israel. I have prayed it at the site of the Annunciation, at the site of Crucifixion. I've prayed it at dozens of sites of apparition.
And it has enhanced every one of those experiences. It's packed with power because it has 150 little passages from the Bible and involves 15 recitations of the Lord's Prayer, along with 150 Hail Marys. This is a potent combination because both Scripture reading and the Rosary are each special tools against evil.
It's a book of solutions. It's a book of miraculous intervention. Nothing brings me closer to Mary. Nothing puts me closer to Jesus and heaven (except, like I said, the liturgy). I've prayed it at Knock and Fatima and Lourdes and Guadalupe and Betania and Medjugorje and Zaragoza and Montserrat and at the graves of saints like Francis of Assisi and Therese the Little Flower and Padre Pio and Catherine Laboure. I've prayed it at the Vatican in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament -- and what power that unleashed!
Once when I was in Rome walking near the Coloseum a couple of teenage girls rushed up to me speaking hurried Italian and showing me something in a newspaper as if to divert my attention. Immediately I suspected them as pickpockets and placed my hand over my wallet. Finally I was able to shoo them away, but a minute later I heard a commotion and they were running back to me -- holding my Scriptural Rosary. Apparently, while I was guarding my back pocket, they had taken it from my shirt or jacket pocket -- and now they were returning what they had stolen, as if impelled by an unseen force.
[Further note: The Scriptural Rosary is based on the original Rosary, an outgrowth of the 150 Psalms of David. Most historians trace the origin of the Rosary as we know it to the Dark Ages of ninth-century Ireland when monks recited or chanted the psalms and devised ropes with 150 or 50 knots for laymen so they could keep count when they recited an abbreviated version. Soon after clergy and lay people in other parts of Europe began to recite the Angelic Salutation as a repetitive prayer (it's the first part of the Hail Mary) and integrated it with the old technique of chanting the Psalms. Then, during the 13th century, another prayer form, which would soon give the Rosary its Mysteries, began to develop.]
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