November 2, 2018 – “…My motherly heart suffers as I am looking at my children who do not love the truth, those who are hiding it-as I look at my children who do not pray with their feelings and actions. I am sad as I am saying to my Son that many of my children no longer have faith, that they do not know Him-my Son…”
Our Lady shares with us her deep pain at the number of souls who do not love the truth; who do not know or love Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Imagine, someone you love (a child, sibling, or spouse) who is righteous, selfless, and compassionate, working tirelessly and sacrificing themselves to serve others for goodness’ sake only to be ridiculed, defamed and ignored at just about every juncture. The pain you’d feel for that loved one, knowing their goodwill and yet watching them be unfairly mistreated, would be pretty heartbreaking, right? How much greater, then, the Blessed Mother’s pain is as she continually watches her Son, Jesus, Who is God, be denied and blasphemed time and time again by souls, who are also her spiritual children.
And then we come to an interesting part of this half of the message. Let’s reread:
“My motherly heart suffers as I am looking at my children who do not love the truth, those who are hiding it-as I look at my children who do not pray with their feelings and actions. I am sad as I am saying to my Son that many of my children no longer have faith, that they do not know Him-my Son.”
When I first read this, I was stuck on the words, “those who are hiding it.” I thought initially about those, within the Church, who purposely hide the truth from others by spreading inaccuracies, or compromises on Church doctrine for their own ulterior motives. And then I thought about those who hide the truth for fear of being outcast or mocked by critics. The bottom line is both fear and manipulation are producing the same results: loss of faith. This is what saddens Jesus and Mary so deeply. And this is why Our Lady often calls us to pray for conversions; to pray for those who are looking for Jesus but don’t know how to, and to pray for those who are persecuting Him (the Mystical Body of Christ) so that they may find truth (Jesus).
I came upon a passage from the Gospel of St. John the other night, and felt it connected in a way with Our Lady’s message. Here, we know the Pharisees sought to silence Jesus with lies and manipulation. And because of their animosity towards Jesus, this in turn caused some in the synagogue to hide their belief in Jesus for fear of expulsion.
Perhaps we can meditate over this Scripture reading along with Our Lady’s message in our prayers today. I think it’s important for us too to remember, in our prayers for those who have not yet come to know and love Jesus, to also pray for those within the Church as well. Especially priests and religious life. May the Holy Spirit give us the grace and strength to live our faith courageously, and to love and live in the truth, which is God Himself.
Even after Jesus had performed so many signs in their presence, they still would not believe in him. This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet:
“Lord, who has believed our message
and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
For this reason they could not believe, because, as Isaiah says elsewhere:
“He has blinded their eyes
and hardened their hearts,
so they can neither see with their eyes,
nor understand with their hearts,
nor turn—and I would heal them.”
Isaiah said this because he saw Jesus’ glory and spoke about him.
Yet at the same time many even among the leaders believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they would not openly acknowledge their faith for fear they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved human praise more than praise from God.
Then Jesus cried out, “Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me. The one who looks at me is seeing the one who sent me. I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.
“If anyone hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge that person. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world. There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; the very words I have spoken will condemn them at the last day. For I did not speak on my own, but the Father who sent me commanded me to say all that I have spoken. I know that his command leads to eternal life. So whatever I say is just what the Father has told me to say.” [John 12:37-50]