Saturday, November 12, 2011

You Were Meant To Be Broken=The Lie Behind Sexual Abuse

Sexual Abuse.  It has been going on for since the beginning when sin entered into the world.

My earliest memory is of sexual abuse.  I was three years old and was awoken by a man who was supposed to be my babysitter who had stripped from the waist down on his waterbed and was violating me.  I was scared, I was confused, I was in pain and did not know what to do, so I pretended to be asleep.  I cried silently as I laid there being abused in such a horrific way that when I tell you that I understand the deep wounds of sexual abuse, I really mean it.
That being said, I want to talk to those who are watching the Penn State Scandal.  I want to discuss Sexual Abuse from the perceptive that perhaps those who are sexually abused have been and are being targeted by the Devil because they have been called by God to bring their gifts in a very powerful way to the word for the sake of the salvation of souls.  Each of us have been created by God as a unique and unrepeatable gift of our person.  Each of us have been given different gifts and charisms in living out our lives that will bring Christ to the world.  So in light of this truth, it makes sense then, that if we had supernatural eyes to see, we  would see that light emanating from one another and that the light takes on a different look in some way depending upon who you are and what your particular gifts are.  Just as an icon looks as if the light is coming from within the person in the icon, that is how each of us, as an icon revealing we are created in the image and likeness of God, emanate light in the spiritual realm that only the angels and demons that surround us can see.

A few weeks ago I was in Chicago listening to Zachary King, an ex-high Wizard that was in a satanic coven for over 26 years give his conversion story.

As he was speaking about his childhood, I began to think, what if the reason certain people are sexually abused is not a random event, but is actually a coordinated attack by the devil to destroy God's chosen ones.  What if there were persons who were chosen by God to for the building up of the church and in doing so, bestowed upon them gifts and charisms  and in being chosen, there was some how a supernatural sign upon them that the enemy had learned to identify them?

As I pondered this in prayer, I began to imagine that right in the mother's womb, as new life is being knit together, the kiss of God is placed upon this tiny unborn child and in doing so an immortal soul is infused, thus creating a human person.   Each one of us is made in the image and likeness of God, unique and unrepeatable persons.  Within this truth there is a distinct gift of dignity within that child.  However each of us are called to give our yes in different ways and for different reasons.  Let's say a particular person is called to the priesthood or perhaps is called to be a great Saint and evangelize the world!  Well, this person would bear a mark that is quite different than others.  Perhaps there are more angels that surround this child or different angels, perhaps there is a light that emanates from them in some mysterious way, whatever this mark, this light, or the angels are that differentiate it from others, there seems to be some identifiable means of which to distinguish them from others.

The enemy, being superior in intellect and having thousands of years through trial and error, has some how learned to identify and recognize it.  He might not always know what exactly that persons call is, but he has learned to identify which ones ultimately enter religious life and which ones end up being extremely dangerous, or more easily swayed to his "dark" side and when he does,  he goes after it with a vengeance.  Why? Because we are at war folks.  We are the Church Militant and the enemy has his own battle plan, in terms of war the best plan is to infiltrate the enemies lair, subvert and undermine, use spies, whatever it takes to corrupt and destroy their military efforts.

I asked a priest friend of mine who is a Theologian in this area if I was correct in saying that those who are called to religious life are some how marked in a supernatural way.  He told me that yes, at the moment of conception those that are called to the priesthood are marked and that Mary does know her priests.  He also said that there are different angels sent to different people for different reasons and so that it would correct to say that the enemy can "see" this.

If we had supernatural eyes, we would see this as well.  Some of us are more in tune with the mystical all around us but for many, this reality is hard to believe in or hard to understand.  However, it is my hope that using this analogy one can begin to realize that we are body and soul.  That means there is a physical and spiritual reality knit together creating our very person.  We are neither one nor the other.  The teachings of Theology of The Body by Blessed Pope John Paul II states that " the body makes visible the invisible".  This means that my person is revealed through my body.  Spiritual realities, which our physical eyes can not see, still exist.  If I asked you if you loved someone and you said yes, could you place that love on the table in front of me to show me it? No, but we physicalize our love in other ways.  It is the old saying "Actions speak louder than words" and that is because our actions, our works, our deeds reveal a lot about who we are as human beings.  We need to open our minds to the reality that there is a spiritual realm all around us and it is just as real as the physical one.

The devil exists.  If we had eyes to see the spiritual realm, we would see him and much more.  St. Padre Pio,  once told a group of people that the number of devils active in the world is greater
than all the people who had been alive since Adam.[cviii] 

Padre Pio also said: “If all the devils that are here were to take bodily form, they would blot out the light of the sun!”[cix]. I read this same evidence in the books written by Fr. Gabriel Amorth, a leading Vatican Exorcist. 

ArchBishop Fulton Sheen said the greatest thing the devil ever did was to get people to think he does not exist.  I would agree with that but I would like to add that the devil has propagated yet another aspect to that great lie which is now taking hold even amongst Christians and is actually a far more dangerous lie.

People are now acknowledging that there may be a devil, yet in the same breath they say "but don't focus on him that is what he wants".  Some how people think that if they just ignore him he will go away or will not try to come against them in any way.  I have actually heard someone say, I don't pay any attention to him and people that do are giving him attention and that is giving him power.

I am sorry but what a load of garbage.  The devil is out there and he believes in what we seem to have all willingly abandoned which the belief the supernatural, the belief in the mystical, the mysterious and the spiritual reality that is is all around us.  Everything does mean something.  Our bodies speak a language.  Spiritual realities can be brought to bear in our temporal world we see this through the sacraments which are outward signs that we enter into through and with our physical bodies but what is even more amazing is that there is a spiritual grace that is flowing into our very soul through the sacraments.  The enemy knows this and that is why the "Black Mass" is an exact replica of a true mass, but profaned and blasphemed through ritual, even a consecrated host is used.  Why? Because the Devil believes that ritual, blood, words, sacramentals, sacraments, covenants and contracts are all real supernatural realities that are manifested in a physical way and so, being the great legalist that he is, exploits these truths that so many Christians no longer believe in.

St. Thomas of Aquinas said in his "Summa" that when a man and woman free from mortal sin come together in the marital embrace that the very union of this action becomes a conduit of grace to their souls which is a healing of concupiscence, it enables them to grow in holiness because of the grace received in the action.

The washing waters of baptism, the anointing of our bodies with healing oils, the eating and drinking of the body of Christ, the laying on of hands, the words spoken at consecration or when a couple makes their vows, we are physical beings with a soul and so a spiritual experience is something that our souls are experiencing while our bodies are experiencing it physically.

As a Catholic, I realize that blessed salt is not a magical luck charm.  The use of Exorcised salt is powerful to exorcise a demon because the spiritual power of Jesus Christ through the Church is brought to bear on the physical substance through the blessing of the priest who in the person of Christ (in persona Christi) has with his spoken word, form of prayer and authority of the Church, joined that spiritual reality to the physical substance that I or anyone else can than take and use in their homes or elsewhere.  This is theology of the body in that as the body makes visible the invisible, the salt is making visible the power of the Church in it's use because of the prayer assigned to it.

We see this through the Crucifix, the devil hates it not because it is a piece of wood with a piece of metal of an imitation Jesus that perhaps was manufactured in China, but the enemy sees the power of what it signifies, the power of the obedience and the spiritual meaning of it brought to bear and made visible through the physical form!!!!

The scapular then truly is an armor on the body.  The enrollment in a scapular then seals the person through the prayer said by the priest over the person being enrolled.  The prayer and all of the spiritual protection that comes from it's efficacy is then physicalized onto the person as an outward sign of the protection when it is worn.  Their front and their back are covered in this prayer so that no hex, vex, spell or curse can be made on this person who is shielded and protected.  I imagine anyone trying would see spiritual rubber balls bounce right off this person wearing a scapular.

So you see, those persons who were sexually abused, may have been spotted right in the womb and the enemy has from that moment on, tried to attack and destroy that person so that they could not become all that God called them to be.  The enemy has learned, that in a world of distraction and noise, the likelihood of a person hearing God's call can be drastically reduced when this person has been abused through the very deep wounds of sexual abuse.  The enemy knows that our sexuality, being a boy or girl is a sign that reveals that we were created for love and in God's image and likeness, in the image of the trinity and so the devil seeks to strike us there.

This chink in the armor can cause many of us to despair on Gods mercy, to think that how can God exist to allow this to happen to me? Perhaps we think, how can God be a loving God and let this happen? For those who do overcome that objection, the devil realizes that even though this person may come to believe that God loves them, but that the devil is working to inflict this evil deed, he knows that they will be broken.

Father wounds, intimacy issues, addictions, trust issues and so much more are now inflicted upon the soul because of the sexual abuse and so those of us who answer the call and begin healing, leak like a sieve and are not as effective in being able to bring a drink of the merciful love of Christ to others.

But what if you learned that the sexual abuse was a deliberate and purposeful targeting of you by the devil because you were marked for greatness? What if you learned that the reason you were so severely abused was because marked you amongst his chosen ones that he was in trusting gifts and charisms for the ensuring of the faith and for his plan of Divine Providence?

What you would you think then?  In the enemies eyes, we were made to be broken.  If you need healing from the lies and wounds created by the devil from sexual abuse, any childhood wound or wound from our culture, come to Crystal Lake Illinois on December 10th and be set free!!!

St. Mary MacKillop, pray for us.

Saint Mary MacKillop Shares Hope with Sex Abuse Victims
Sister Mary MacKillop will be canonized this month for her extraordinary efforts helping the poor and founding a religious order under tough circumstances, but her experience dealing with sexual abuse is propelling followers to anoint her as the patron saint of sexual abuse victims.    Since the abuse happened in the church it makes her life story connect with victims and helps represent the modern day struggle that leaders are engaged in overcoming and extricating abuse out of the church.
Sister Mary MacKillop exposed a Catholic priest of sex abuse in a parish in Australia in 1870.  After she revealed that children were being abused by Father Patrick Keating in a nearby parish, she was excommunicated from the church. 
Humiliated by the accusation, Father Keating took revenge on Sister MacKillop as she was officially excommunicated, banished from the church and denied sacrament, by Bishop Sheil, a friend of Father Keating.  Sister MacKillop’s revelation came at a time in the church’s history when church leaders did not want to hear the truth and face the problem of abuse in the church.  As a result, it was easier to punish Sister MacKillop, with contempt and strong opposition that eventually resulted in her excommunication.
With Sister MacKillop’s recent canonization, victims of sex abuse, their friends and families now can pray to her for reconciliation and healing.  Sister MacKillop has clearly shown an understanding of the pain and suffering they endured.  The church’s decision to canonize Sister MacKillop shows a great deal of hope and healing for the church and victims of sexual abuse.  The decision also shows the necessity of addressing and preventing the crimes of abuse head on, and the wisdom showed by the church in it’s ability to recognize and atone for its mistakes.
Sister MacKillop inspires us with a life that was heroic, full and holy.  Her story illustrates a remarkable life: she established an Australian religious order, taught children, worked with the poor and lived a holy life.  She stood up for victims of abuse, when the price to pay was so dear, membership to the church that she loved.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

My 9/11 Experience (Caution: Disturbing Images)=UPDATED

As we approach the 10th anniversary of 9/11, I have been thinking about how it is an event that my generation (much like the generation of the Kennedy Assassination), will recall it knowing "where" they were and "what" they were doing when two hijacked planes hit the Twin Towers in New York City. 

Here is my 9/11 story of where I was and what I was doing, but with an additional segment on how it impacted my life as a mother.

I had just flown home the day before from Georgia, where I watched my baby brother graduate from his basic training in the Armed Services.  After getting my daughter Sarah off to school (she was 6), I went back upstairs and crawled into bed next to my 6 month old daughter, AnnaMarie.  My son Gabriel, aged 4 and my daughter Elisha aged 4 1/2 were snuggled next to me watching Sesame Street.  

My husband called me from work.  I glanced at the time and noticed that it was way to early for him to call to check in and immediately worried something was wrong.  A flat tire? He ran out of gas? My immediate thought was a selfish one, "do I have to get up and do something?".

He asked me if I was watching television.  I told him yes.  When it became clear to him that I had no idea what was going on in real time on every station BUT PBS, he told me to go down stairs and turn on the tv.

My heart jumped into my chest.  I was afraid, but checked the children then ran downstairs and turned on the tv.  What was unfolding before my very eyes has since gone down in history books for future generations to learn about and remember as a horrific day of tragic consequences for the United States of America.

Neither of us spoke as I watched the smoke billow out of what I would later learn was the North tower.  What was I looking at? Did a bomb explode? I was trying to make sense of what was happening and why my husband sounded so freaked out.  Neither of us spoke, I just held the phone to my ear and listened to the commentary on the live news coverage.   My first impression was that a freak accident occurred.  I listened to the news reports and the theory that a small private plane must have lost control and hit the building.  At the same time, my husband expressed to me that he believed this was not an accident, but was instead an attack.  I was confused and frightened but, without expressing it, I was sure he was wrong.  That would NEVER happen to "us".  As an American Citizen, I felt that this kind of incident would never happen on American soil.  I certainly had no comprehension of what was really happening.

That is when it happened.  The particular channel I was watching had live footage of the North tower in flames and out of the corner of the screen I saw it.  Slowly, gently gliding into the frame and then tilting it's angle at just the last moment, I watched in horror as the image clicked in my brain as being another airplane and just as I realized what it was, it struck the South Tower spraying waves of steel, fire and smoke out the side.

I gasped as the fear entered into every participle of my being.  Oh how I longed for my husband to be with me and not just talking to me on the phone.  I wanted my daughter home from school.  I wanted to climb back into my warm bed with my little baby and watch Sesame Street and turn back the clock making this "thing" that was unfolding go away.

Then the reports of another plane came in, this one hitting the pentagon.  I became numb with fear and grief as I heard of yet another, headed towards the White House, crashed in a field in Pennsylvania.  When would the chaos end? How many more where there? Even when it became clear that there were  no more planes, I still felt raw with anticipation that the next "attack" was imminent.  The first time I heard a plane go by in the sky after that day, I had a jolt of fear climb up my spine.

While most of us know where we were and what we were doing on September 11, 2001, there is another memory linked to these September 11 attacks that has stayed with me and shaped me as a mother for all of these years since.

While that day was just something I watched on television, many more "lived" it with tangible consequences to their own lives.  Yet it was only until the weekend following the attack that I actually entered into the event and allowed myself to be affected in a personal way by all I had witnessed as a mere observer.

I was upstairs with all of the kids trying to get the fall clothes out and the summer clothes put away.   Clothes were strewn from one end of the room to the other. AnnaMarie, who had extreme colic, was screaming uncontrollably as usual.  I was overwhelmed, I was tired and Shawn was working overtime as usual to help us dig out way out of the financial crisis that we had once again found ourselves in because of me staying home with our small children.

As I opened yet another container, I smelled a dirty diaper and got up to find Gabriel to deal with yet another one of the many mundane tasks of being a mother.  Gabriel was had pulled all of his clothes off, including his diaper and he and his 4 year old sister where walking through the contents.  Their foot prints of feces were all over the carpet and the clothes that I had laid out in piles.  As I saw the scene before me, I began to cry realizing how many hours of more work now lay before me.  I felt so overwhelmed.

The baby was screaming, I had boxes of summer and fall clothes strewn about, many of which now had to rewashed.  But I could not even deal with any of that yet because I now had to clean poop off of two children and out of the carpet in three separate rooms.  But it soon got much worse.

As I stood their crying, holding AnnaMarie wondering how I was going to deal with this AND take care of a screaming baby, my 6 year old came into the room to see what all of the fuss was about.

She took one look at the poop smeared all over the carpet as well as on her brother and sister and proceeded to throw up all over the floor.  If you think that is bad, wait a moment, it get's worse.

I kid you not when I say that her 4 year old sister, who at that point did not realize that she had stepped into the poop or that it was all over the floor as well as herself, looked down at herself and then back and her sister and then she began to throw up as well.  

By this time, my head was spinning and you can imagine how sorry I felt for myself.  As I dragged up a bucket of soapy water and began to clean and scrub the feces and vomit out of the carpet, all the while listening to a screaming baby and the others yelling and fighting with each other, I began to break down and sob.  I continued to sob, you know the kind that wracks your whole body and you could not stop even if you tried?  Well, that was me.  I even began talking out loud to myself about how much this just "sucks" and I can't believe how my kids could have been so naughty for doing this to me.  I contemplated going back to work and putting them all in daycare.  I went on lamenting about my predicament when suddenly, a flash of video footage from the 9/11 attacks played out in my mind and with it, an inner discernment that gently opened my heart to see how very blessed even this act of cleaning up vomit and poop from my carpet was.

I saw in my mind's eye, the people who jumped off the towers to their death as their friends and co-workers were being consumed by smoke and flames.  The discernment I had was, how many of those people who died a horrific death, would trade places with me in a moment,just to have just one more day with their babies, their husbands or wives?  A sudden wave of peace washed over me.  It emanated from deep within me and felt as if it were spread right out to my fingertips.  I was so very blessed to be alive, to be with my family, to have an opportunity to love and be loved.  It is a memory that comes to me every time I am reminded of 9/11. 

This memory, of how the hardships of life, the every day sufferings of being a mother or a wife or sister or a daughter, have been part of the journey and I often take them for granted.  I have so many lessons to learn, but that day I learned that even the hardest things to endure like a loss of a job, financial hardship, mundane jobs like housework or other life events have been something that I allow to consume me.  They are but a distraction to the real purpose and meaning of life.  The purpose of life is to love and to be loved through a total and free gift of ourselves to others, especially our own families.  I am still struggling with this.

The truth is that we are given a very short time to be here and that what we choose to do with it does matter.  Perhaps this is what the saying "offer it up" is all about.  Many times we run away from things that are difficult or because suffering is involved.  However, when we realize that enduring the difficulty rather than resisting it, for sake of love, transforms us and those around us the difficulty becomes something completely different.  It becomes a gift.  It becomes an act of love.  There is great mystery to suffering that I do not truly comprehend but one thing I do know is that we should not waste any opportunity to offer up our difficulties and our sufferings to God for grace, for love, for penance, for our families conversions etc.

We can make transform our suffering into something valuable.  When we enter into the mystery of suffering,  there is often personal growth on the other side.  My suffering was nothing compared to the many families that lost so very much that day but I pray that I did not waste it. 

Perhaps, if there is a survivor of 9/11 reading this, it will give them peace to know that far away, in a small town in Wisconsin, a young mother who was overwhelmed with life, entered into the pain and suffering of their day and then joined her own suffering to theirs as a gift to God in hopes that He would bring them consolation in their trials and sufferings.

I realize now that the role that Simon played in helping Jesus Christ carry His cross, was an invitation for me to do the same and that "offering it up" was just one of the many ways of accomplishing this.

My God, Our Father, embrace those in pain from 9/11, may God the Son, console His bride to ease their burden, may God the Holy Spirit fill the hearts of His children to enable them to endure and be healed.  May Our Lady of Guadalupe protect, heal and open all of us to receive her Son.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Amy Winehouse; A Deeply Damaged Soul is Dead at 27 UPDATED Nov 2011


An initial autopsy taken in the wake of the singer's death was inconclusive, though no drugs were found in her system at the time. But according to both Greenway and pathologist Suhail Baithun, plenty of alcohol, sadly, was.
Baithun told the inquest committee this morning, where their findings were revealed, that Winehouse had consumed "a very large quantity of alcohol" and that her blood-alcohol limit was more than five times that of the drunk-driving limit.


Amy Winehouse was found dead in her London home July 23, 2011. Her cause of death is not known yet but the family will get the results of the autopsy within the next four weeks.

Mr Winehouse, who broke down in tears at the service at Edgwarebury Cemetery in North London, spoke on behalf of his ex-wife Janis and their son Alex and insisted she had made a ‘fantastic recovery'.

Her Father is making plans to set up a foundation to help struggling drug addicts in their daughter’s name.

Read more:

I have not heard much from her mother other than her saying that she had seen her daughter a few hours before her death and she seemed "out of it".

In an interview in 2008, her mother Janis said she would be unsurprised if her daughter died before her time.
She said: 'I've known for a long time that my daughter has problems.
'But seeing it on screen rammed it home. I realise my daughter could be dead within the year. We're watching her kill herself, slowly.
'I've already come to terms with her dead. I've steeled myself to ask her what ground she wants to be buried in, which cemetery.
'Because the drugs will get her if she stays on this road.
'I look at Heath Ledger and Britney. She's on their path. It's like watching a car crash - this person throwing all these gifts away.'
In addition, there was a website set up called When Will Amy Winehouse Die?, with visitors asked to guess the date of death with the chance of winning an iPod Touch.
Read more:

What a tragic statement about our world that a persons life and even their death is made into a form of entertainment, a mere commodity for our use and consumption.

Amy was a deeply damaged soul. Once, while being interviewed by Spin magazine, she broke off talking to carve her then-boyfriend Blake Fielder-Civil's name into her stomach with a shard of mirror. What a voice. What a unique personality. What a horrible waste. But what could anyone have done? Amy Winehouse had plenty of people trying to help her, plenty of chances to turn things round. Ultimately, the bleak truth is that the forces driving her to get blitzed were stronger than the ones driving her to write and perform." said Luke Lewis about the death of Amy Winehouse.

It is believed the drug that that killed her was ecstasy. Interestingly this drug is supposed to make you happy, feel like you can do anything, even fly. This young woman, raised by Jewish parents, who I have noticed would wear the Jewish Star around her neck, was anything but happy. Her addictions, eating disorders, cutting and other self abuse all screamed out to the world through her body that her soul was beyond pain and was desperate for love. In the Catholic tradition "Ecstasy" was something experienced mystically by the saints when they entered into a mystical union with God. Some would even levitate. Is it no wonder then, that when a drug comes along promising mystical experience, that those most in need for God would accept this counterfeit? In a world that has lost it's belief in the supernatural, we keep seeing gifted artists, perhaps with unique charism and gifts of a supernatural kind, perish in search for the ultimat high yet accepting the lie instead of what they really desire?

This video displays this unique woman as well as her unique voice. The words always haunted me, "I cheated myself, like I knew I would, I told you that I was trouble, I told you that I was no good". I think they disturb me even more now.

At only 27 years old, she joins the ranks of other famous persons who died at the same young age. Among them, Jimi Hendrix who died after taking sleeping pills and alcohol. He asphixiated after inhaling his own vomit. Janis Joplin died from a heroin overdose, Jim Morrison died of an apparent heart attack, Kurt Cobain died from shooting himself with a shotgun, Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones drowned in his swimming pool, Ron "Pigpen" McKernan who was a founding member of the Grateful dead died after alcoholism caused massive internal bleeding.

There are so many listed in fact that Wikipedia has a page dedicated to them called "The 27 Club". While we await her "official" cause of death, it has been reported that it is from some kind of drug overdose. This comes as no surprise as she has been hospitalized for what was reported as an overdose of ketamine, ecstasy, cocaine, heroin and alcohol in the past and has done many stints in rehap for her many addictions, one as recently as May of this year.

If you are unaware of who Amy Winehouse was, then let me try and enlighten you. Amy Winehouse had a voice that could, in one man's words, pin you up against a wall. It is true, her voice was like no other and that is why I liked her voice. Her throaty jazz vocals had rough and brassy infusion yet somehow her 60's style dress and hair as well as her hip-hop slang gave her a style all her own. He lyrics seemed to always be about her life which was about drinking, taking drugs and chronic infidelity and abuse either at her own hands or at the hands of her husband who is said to be the one who introduced her to crack-cocaine.

They say that artists write, sing or paint about what they know, I say it is the making visible the invisible. Her soul, deeply damaged and troubled, manifested itself through her music. I believe anyone who heard her sing or saw her perform or even just read her lyrics would say this woman was hurt and fill with an ache so deep that it was only a matter of time before her soul cried out and was either heard or was snuffed out all together.

We live in a troubled world where as I write this, children and their mothers are dropping dead in Somalia from starvation and dehydration, children are sold into sexual slavery and drugs have become the devils way of convincing people that life is so awful, they should try to enter the dreamlike state that drugs can give them so escape from it all. The temptation is powerful, especially if you have any financial or emotional issues that threaten to overwhelm you. The dreamlike state seems to be an escape that makes life more tolerable.

We start at out as innocent souls and then along the way, some of us become deeply damaged.

Why do so many amazing souls created with such talent check out so early in life? I thought that God would never give you more than you can handle? Well, this is true, however, God desires for us to be in a relationship with Him. I think one of the common factors amongst these tragic young deaths is a lack of relationship with God. Wait, hear me out now. If anyone reading this can give me the name of a person who had a belief in God and a relationship with God yet allowed the pressures of the world to overcome and take their life then please fill me in because I can think of none.

I have been praying for Amy for years and I will not stop now. I hope that before her death, she in someway was cognizant enough to ask God to forgive her for not believing she was made for greatness and that she was a gift. I pray that she asked God to help her, to take her home. I am hoping this happened but what I fear is that the enemy might have taken her. Drugs have a way of keeping a person unaware of anything. That is the great tragedy. Drugs are becoming a a greater and greater threat in our world. The antidote, is to find a way to bear the burdens of life. She was made for relationship, we all are. The thing is, most people don't realize that ultimately, they desire a relationship with the bridegroom who never disappoints and that is Jesus Christ.

I am sad she lost the fight. I pray her soul is at peace. If you know someone with drug or alcohol addiction, don't wait, go to them now and encourage them to fight for their soul before it is too late.
Q: What is the origin of "Rehab?"

A: "We were walking down the street, on our way out to the pool hall, and I sang out of nowhere, like a joke," she said. "And Mark was like, 'Who's that?' I said, 'It's no one, I just made it up.' He's like, you should do that as a song, it's funny. And I was like, it's true."

Q: Do you feel like you're a true romantic, or is there a cynicism that keeps you from being the ultimate romantic?

A: "No, I'm a very romantic person. I'm romantic about everything."

Q: I think people think of you as being...

A: "A miserable, cynical person."

Q: Do you ever feel like you'll let people down if they expect this raconteur who's wild and you don't deliver?

A: "No. If someone goes 'Amy, let me buy you tequila,' and I'm like 'No, no, I'm not drinking,' if they ask why, I always say that I'm on antibiotics. Because I'm ashamed to just go, 'You know, I'm just not drinking.' I have to say that I'm on a course of medication, because I feel ashamed (about abstaining)."

Q: When your first album came out, someone asked where you'd be 10 years from now, and you said...

A: "Dead. Dead in a ditch, on fire."

(Q&A by Chris Willman of Reuters)

Friday, July 22, 2011

Icon of the New Adam and New Eve: The Shroud and The Tilma

The Shroud of Turin and The Tilma with the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. Both images are Icons.

What is an Icon? An Icon is said to be "written" not painted because it is sacred art that has a purpose. It is a Catechism in color. Every line, every detail means and teaches something. That something is a theological truth about God and man's relationship to Him. Icons are spiritual doorways because when we contemplate them, there is an internal movement towards God incarnate, which is what Icons are, and when we move toward God, He moves towards us.

Icons are God incarnate because they are the physical manifestation of theological truth. They make visible the invisible. It was said that every man and woman are icons because we are made in the image and likeness of God, male and female He created them so to see a "persons" is to see the likeness of God. Perhaps that is why we greet one another with a gesture of reverence. Some cultures shake hands and some bow in the presence of others.

So now, in a world where the belief of the supernatural is almost lost, we are once again in need of a simple catechism. Like children, we need to be re-engaged through the beauty of pictures. "Beauty will save the world" and perhaps sacred art is the very beauty Dostoyevsky was speaking of.
(This Icon "written" by Michelle Leonille Jennes using the shroud as her guide and Divine Mercy)

So what do I think they are Icons of? Well, several things but here are four of the biggest. I believe they are Icons of these four things.

Icons of;

1. The Wedding Feast
2. The Eucharist
3. The Redemption of Man and Woman
4. The Song of Songs

1. The Wedding Feast:

TILMA; Tilma worn during marriage ceremonies, worn on the body as a covering. Bridegroom and Bride are tied together as a symbol of their union during ceremony of wedding. It also is used to carry children later, in the fold which is then tied around the waist of the person. The Tilma is worn by average people therefore revealing that ALL are called to Union and Communion. Two pieces of cloth were sewn together, in fact the center of this cloth is the exact middle of the image. It is where two have become one. Two pieces of cloth become one garment. This also brings dignity to male and female he created them as marriage is only between a man and a woman. In the image, I content the exact center of the tilma is also where the divine mercy image is in the robe. But that is another thing.

SHROUD; The Shroud is believed to be the table cloth of the last supper. This is the wedding feast of of the lamb, the table an earthly banquet but the feast is on Jesus Christ, the true food and true drink. This last supper is THE wedding feast and we are ALL called to the Wedding feast. The cloth of the shroud is two pieces sewn together. The two become one once again revealing the theme of "marriage". Also revealing the dignity of male and female he created them as marriage is between a man and a woman.

2. The Eucharist

TILMA; The image of Mary, with Christ incarnate, is God made flesh. This is a Eucharistic image. She is the tabernacle that brings us Jesus. She is the ark of the New Covenant that holds manna for us. Even the words of Juan Diego "is this the land of the flesh, the land of the corn, the land of my people" is indicative that the food of his people is linked with flesh. Fr. Miguel Guadalupe wrote in 7 Veils of OLGuadalupe, that even the image is shaped like a ear of corn, the fruit!

SHROUD; The image of Jesus, on the tablecloth is the very meal upon which we are receiving. The miraculous impression, a foreshadowing of what would continue on earth at the hands of the priest. Jesus uttered the words over the cloth upon which hours later he would be covered. He broke the bread and gave it to us as true food and true drink. Later, his body, broken would be laid upon the cloth once more, and at the moment of his consecration, of the fulfillment of scripture, he rises and in an instant his glorified body manifests the image, makes visible the invisible, onto the table cloth.

3. The Redemption of Man and Woman; The New Adam and The New Eve

TILMA; Not only do the constellation's placed precisely over her image where theological truths are conveyed, but she reveals that her immaculate conception is woman fully participating in the redemption of man. Just as Eve took of the apple and ate, so did Adam and so BOTH fell from the glory of what God had intended for them. In God's plan for the redemption of man, He could have done it by any means He saw fit, yet, He chose for the participation of mankind, and begun so through A woman. Male and female He created them, so would not God make it known that male and female they are redeemed? If we are made in his image, male and female, then we see how beautiful it is that before Christ takes His flesh from her, the merits of His sacrifice are applied to her at the very moment of her conception. OLGuadalupe appears to St. Juan Diego on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, linking this truth to the image.
Sts. Joachim and Ann, Icon handwritten by the iconographer, Nancy Lee Smith, IHM
(Copyright, Saint Ann Catholic Church and the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary)

The truth of Redemption "written" in this icon is that God makes all things new. Eve, of her own free will, in the garden of paradise, free from concupiscence and free from sin, she took from the tree of knowledge of Good and Evil, the fruit and ate it. She brought it into her body, through an act of the will and it bore death to the world.

This image reveals through Iconography, that Mary, The New Eve, free from sin (immaculately conceived) brings into her virginal garden (an icon of eden) with an act of her free will, she brings into her garden the fruit of ALL KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL and through her yes, brings life into the world. Not just spiritual life but the physical life of Jesus Christ full man and full God. "The Body makes visible the invisible".

Even the process of Iconography reveals a theological truth and Our Lady of Guadalupe is no exception. For instance, her inner robe is a rose or earth color and is understood by the Nahuatl Indians as meaning she was created from the dust of the earth. Through the lens of Iconography we can see that ALMOST ALL OF THE NAHUATL GLYPHS hold a message NEVER BEFORE considered because we have not looked upon the image through the LENS OF ICONOGRAPHY.

Through the lens of Iconography, we would first understand that the clay bole used on the image as well as the gold leafing found there have a HUGE message and symbolic meaning!

The clay symbolizes the earth from which Adam (and all humanity) was created. With
the gold leaf, you "breathe life" into the clay, as God breathed life into Adam.

Just as raw clay is fired into a handsome and durable pot, applying gold leaf "fires"
the clay bole into luminous beauty, reflecting earthly and heavenly light. So through the lens of Iconography, the message found in OLGuadalupe reaffirms that She is the New Eve and that where I see the torso of Christ in her inner robe which is done in these clay tones, IS the New Adam and the gold leafing, reveals the breath of God, the Divine Light.

SHROUD; The New Adam, free from sin, with an act of his free will allows the manifestation of our sins, the spiritual depravity, to make itself visible upon His body so as to bare it and then birth us all through his sacrifice into His Father's heavenly kingdom. The New Adam's glorified and redeemed body is what created the image onto this holy cloth.

4. The Song of Songs

"Arise, my darling,
my beautiful one, and come with me.

See! The winter is past;
the rains are over and gone.

Flowers appear on the earth;
the season of singing has come,
the cooing of doves
is heard in our land."
(Song of Songs 2:10-12)

It is as if Mary is being invited to rise and be assumed into heaven! To demonstrate the redemption of woman as well as man has been accomplished. God unties all of the knots that Adam and Even tied. He makes all things new.

Tilma; Mary is both sister and bride as well as Mother. As sister, she has provided the flesh and blood, without a biological father, thus acting as a twin might. The splitting off from one person and the creation of another. This is what took place when Adam was asleep and Eve came from His side. There was not a union of two become one flesh. So in the tilma we see Mary, offering her side, her flesh, for the Son of God to be given the hands and feet upon which to give His life for the Redemption of the world. The constellation of Gemini is over her torso. The Nahuatl indians wrote in glyphs and not letters. There way to write the most beautiful of love songs and poetry was the glyphs of flowers and flower clusters. Music, was the highest form of prayer and to dance and sing was the highest form of worship. The flower glyphs on the robe of our lady is "written" by God revealing to the indians this is a divine love song of the greatest form of love and of worship of the one true God. To love, free from concupiscence.

Even now, I have been told that Msgr. Eduardo Chavez has placed pins into the center of the flowers and tested his theory to see if a song or melody would manifest and indeed, there is. I have believed this from the moment I began to see that OLGuadalupe is an Icon of the New Eve. She is the Bride that sings her beautiful song to the Bridegroom. That song is an invitation for the world to ponder the biblical book of the bible and discern and contemplate the love poetry of our God in the Song of Songs. We are called to love our sister and our bride. Jesus himself, desires for us to be nourished at his mother's breast, as we see in many pictures of the saints that had mystical experiences of this. We are called, to be brothers and sisters by sharing in His mother's milk and in fact her protection under her mantle. She is His sister , His mother and His Bride. I have also found significant writings of Blessed Amadeus as well as Fr. Miguel Sanchez that believed this image had a message for the church as the lady of the apocalypse. He believed that she would be a great intercessor of healing and evangelization to the world. He even speculated that the flowers on the hill, which were many, held great significance to the story. I have researched these flowers and agree. There were many flowers gathered on Tepeyac hill and I believe they are all significant to the story being told through Iconography to the Church of the 21st century.

SHROUD; There has been the discovery of the flowers within the image. Not only has there been similarities to iconography, but there is even some experts that believe that there are "cartoon" shaped flowers on the image. I suspect that they also would play a song if pins were placed into the centers and that if played while the tilma song played, would create a melody and harmony. These images are receptive and the parallels and similarities are great. These are only SOME of what I have found and I am a nobody, a no one, a mother of 8. But, St. Juan Diego was also an average everyday person, and perhaps sometimes, the littlest ones are the ones that hear. I could be wrong, but I believe we are all being invited to contemplate the images of the Shroud and the Tilma in light of one another (also with Divine Mercy).

For more info on other areas I am developing, please read the other articles related to this on my blog.

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Icon Of The New Eve and The New Adam; Song of Songs on the Tilma

One of my latest "discernment's" that the Song of Songs is "written"(Icon's are not painted but written and this is one of my main contentions, that there is a message written in the image of the Tilma for the Church of the 21st Century through the lens of Iconography) in the image has been confirmed, at least to me. The priest in the picture is Fr. Tim, someone I believe Mary is going to be revealing much of her plan through in the next several years, please pray for him.

This would be one more demonstration that the technological age that would have the equipment to detect it, would be re-invited to discern the image of Our Lady of Guadalupe. So far, because of a micro-scope, we have found the Purkinje effect, the effects of a living eye as well as 14 people including a family and Bishop Zummarago and St. Juan Diego, all considered to be present in the room at the time St. Juan Diego opened his Tilma and the image suddenly "appeared". The second is the that the Constellations as they appeared at the exact latitude and longitude of the apparition are deposed on the tilma in the exact placement of the morning of Dec 8, 1531 by way of the stars on her outer mantle. Advanced Keplers mathematics and super computers and software programs were necessary for this discovery to be found and then confirmed. Now, a song, may be present and discovered only after entering into the 20th century upon which the music devices have been invented to hear the song? Am I the only person asking the question of "Could there be a message in the Tilma for the Century of the Church that is most like the Aztec culture? We are after all, a culture with false deities, shedding of innocent blood and in need of divine intervention as well as a poor man's catechism to re-evangelize our pagan world are we not?

So, I contend, we are making discoveries in an image that always held these new findings but they were laying dormant until the age upon which would need it most would not only discover it, but through a gift of an outpouring of the Holy Spirit, there would be an outpouring of grace and receptivity to the world so that we would, through the sacred doorway of art, discover the spiritual realm. The Aztec's were catechized through glyphs, through pictures that spoke a language to them. Through the lens of Iconography and science, Theology and Technology are revealing the teachings of our faith once again and I expect to see millions healed, converted and protected through Our Lady of Guadalupe.

I have just been told by a friend who traveled to Mexico and met with Msgr. Eduardo Chavez. My friend told me that Msgr. Eduardo has taken pins and put them into every center of every flower and then had it analyzed and put through some kind of device to test the theory that a song or melody exists within the image. I am not sure if that is a device like the small jewelry box I had that when I opened it, the metal cylinder that when it turned, would spin and the the pins on it would pluck a steel comb creating a beautiful melody, usually, a love song. Well, it is my understanding that Msgr. Eduardo Chavez found found that there is a song or melody in the structure of the flower clusters that when the pins are plucked, creates a tune. I do not have all the specifics on this but am working on getting them and will update this when I do.

I had this same discernment and shared it in May of this year with Fr. Peter Damian Fehlner, the director of the Shrine of OL Guadalupe in La Crosse. Fr. Peter Fehlner is a Marionologist, an expert in Theology as it pertains to Mary. I told him, I believed there is a message about Mary being both Sister and bride. Sister, in that like a twin, she split from her side and gave her flesh, all of it, to Jesus. Sister, in that in the song of songs, we are invited to contemplate the love of the bride and bridegroom as sister first then bride. It is also a message of loving rightly, without the disorder of concupiscence. The constellation of the Gemini Twin is over her belly.

I told him that I believed that there was a song in the image, in the robe. I did not know how to confirm this, yet believed it strongly based on the fact that OLG is the Icon of the New Eve and that I believed the Shroud is the Icon of the New Adam. I have read research of the ancient Nahuatl Indians and that they wrote/painted in flower glyphs to depict love songs and love poetry.

Clusters of flowers were to depict the most beautiful of prayerful poems and music. I told him that I believed that hidden within the clusters on her robe, lies a song. It is a song of holy music. I based this on the fact in their culture dancing is a form of prayer or entering into the prayer.

She IS the woman in the Song of Songs.

The fact that OLG is is dancing meant that she is participating in the song revealing that she IS the bride. Yet, she is making the music because she is performing by playing the morroco which she is holding in the palms of her hands (yet it is sacred music since her pinky's are in the position of St. Anthony's cross). The fact that she is making the music shows her role in the redemption of man as her own conception was immaculately conceived (1st date of apparition) and that through her Fiat, her yes, The New Adam was given flesh and blood from which to give us his Fiat. Just as Adam was free from concupiscence when from his side 100% of his DNA was utilized to create woman. Like an embryonic twin that splits, Adam split and the breath of God into her created woman. So now we have The New Eve, free from Concupiscence, sharing her flesh to give life to the New Adam.

This theology is shared pictorially in that she is holding the morocco in her hand (her immaculate conception and her Fiat, her participation is validated). Mary reveals to all women that we also are called to the redeemer. She is the redemption of woman and so all women have hope of being sung to by the Bridegroom.

Mary participates on every level as Christ makes all things new, she is also assumed into heaven so that the feminine receptive is redeemed and even her body is glorified and risen into heaven just as Christ's was to show the world that while man and woman fell in the garden, male and female they were created, well guess what the tilma and the shroud tell the story through sacred art that male and female we are redeemed. It is the story of Eschatological Man. It is Theology of the Body. That is why the glyph of Blessed Pope John Paul 11 is there as well as the Song of Songs.

I pray if you can share any information on this new research about an actual song being found in the image that you can share with me how to find this information. I have so many more insights to share about what the image of OLGuadalupe is SINGING to the world because within the image, is a message for the Church of the 21st Century.

By the way, there is a message about an unholy and diabolical "trinity" of the dragon, the serpent and the scorpion in the image as well. They are working in a profanation of unholiness all to mock God, but yet, since the very beginning have been bringing about deception, division, confusion and schism (the dragon/draco), murder, death, loss of dignity of person and of life and the shedding of blood acts like gasoline on flames to this entity (the serpent/hydra) and finally perversion, woundedness, desecration of femininity and masculinity (the scorpion/scorpio). Even the sign of scorpio with the M and the forked tail seems to be speak a profanity.

This unholy and diabolical perversion forms an inverted triangle over the image with the head of the dragon being stared down by Mary as she holds the family in her eyes. She is the power upon which we will be protected from this force at work in the world, and has been at work (osiris, isis and horus) since it is my contention they have been at work since the beginning of time, she is going to bring healing of deep wounds to many and she is going to rightly order her children to prepare us for our final confrontation which I believe is coming soon. I believe we are at an end of an age and She desires to be our intercessor, with her son of divine mercy.