As of old, prophets were God’s mouthpiece proclaiming good news, bringing messages of encouragement or warning of impending calamities. Even today, chosen vessels speak out to the alarming signs of our time with ever greater urgency. Our Lady’s words, transmitted through the mouths of the seers over the centuries, are always directed to the very same remedial Marian and Eucharistic devotions for the conversion of sinners and peace in the world. Repeated often enough, perhaps we’ll finally listen!
The peace of God’s creation was fractured by the first war which took place among the angels in the empyrean heavens. It was instigated by Lucifer who fell “like lightening from heaven” (Lk 10:18), and ever since it has been a tale of war and peace on earth.
Berthe Petit (1870-1943), a Franciscan Tertiary mystic and stigmatist, was the apostle of the devotion to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary just as St. Margaret Mary Alacoque (1645-1690) was the apostle of the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Berthe was very well-respected by the ecclesiastical authorities of the day. She had a great devotion to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, whom she referred to as “The Prisoner of Love.” She lived for many years on the Eucharist as her only solid food. In fact, the Church has never found anything contrary to the Catholic Faith in her revelations.
In 1912, Berthe began to receive prophecies of world events from Jesus. He predicted the onset of a great war: “It will be the first of those events (wars), full of sorrows, which will precede the chastisement.” This prophecy was fulfilled on August 4, 1914, when Germany violated Belgium’s neutrality and invaded Berthe’s country. England and France then immediately declared war on Germany. It was the first of the world wars.
On May 5, 1917, Pope Benedict XV (1914-1922), impressed as he was with the mission, piety and reputation of Berthe, wrote a letter requesting all the bishops to turn with lively confidence to the Mother of God to intercede with her Son for the return of peace and tranquility. He also directed that the invocation Queen of Peace be permanently added to the Litany of Loreto. To this day, it is the last of her many titles in that Litany, perhaps carrying eschatological significance! In fact, it was also the first of her many titles, for when she conceived and gave birth to the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6), she became the Queen of Peace, the Queen Mother of Peace.
Responding to the confident call of the Church, the Queen appeared eight days later, on May 13, 1917, to the three little children in Fatima. She held a Rosary in her right hand. However, three months later, on July 13, 1917, she warned in Fatima: “The war [World War I] is going to end, but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one will break out during the pontificate of Pius XI.”
It was on October 13, 1917 that she said: “I am the Lady of the Rosary.” She then performed the great miracle of the sun, when the crowd of 70,000 at the Cova da Iria saw the great ball of fire begin to plummet to earth. However, at a wave of the Queen’s hand, the sun retreated to its celestial abode, to the relief of the thousands. This has since been interpreted to mean that Our Lady can avert a major catastrophe if we do as she says—and, may I add, if we pray to her with confidence.
With respect to Fatima, however, very few of the faithful recall that the apparitions of Our Lady in Fatima had a Eucharistic beginning. In the autumn of 1916 (no specific date was recorded), the guardian angel of Portugal, said to be St. Michael himself, appeared to Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta at the Cova da Iria. He had a chalice in his left hand, over which a Host was suspended, from which some drops of Blood fell into the chalice. Leaving the chalice and the Host suspended in the air, he bowed down to the earth with the children and repeated three times this Eucharistic prayer:
Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, I adore you profoundly and I offer you the Most Precious Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which He is offended. By the infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg the conversion of poor sinners.
He repeated the same prayer three times with the children, Most Holy Trinity…, and then disappeared.
There is a most important link between the apparitions of Fatima, Amsterdam and Akita. The latter two are a continuation and extension of the former. Sadly enough, few Catholics are aware of the Church-approved apparitions of Our Lady in Amsterdam and Akita.
Towards the end of World War II, the Queen of Peace appeared to Ida Peerdeman in Amsterdam on March 25, 1945, the Feast which commemorates her Fiat, when she conceived the Prince of Peace and became the Mother of the Redeemer. She said to Ida: “The war will end soon, thanks to this.” She then showed her a Rosary. World War II ended on May 8, 1945, in Europe.
Like in Fatima, Amsterdam also has a Eucharistic history. A great miracle occurred there on March 15, 1345. A devout Catholic, Ysbrand Dommer, seriously ill and near death, was given Holy Communion by the parish priest. Shortly after he left the house, the patient became violently ill and vomited in a basin. The woman caring for him threw the Host into a large open log fire in the hearth. It was a chilly day in March and the next morning when she went to the hearth to revive the embers, she was startled to see the Host, fresh and brilliant, floating above a low flame from the coals in the hearth.
She instinctively snatched the Host from the fire, carefully wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in a chest for safe keeping. The priest, who was immediately summoned, then placed the Host in a pyx and carried it to the parish church. The following morning, to his surprise, he found the pyx empty. Lo and behold, the Host was discovered in the house by the same woman when she opened the chest to remove some linens.
Once more, the priest was summoned and he decided to return the Host to the church. Then, after yet another mysterious disappearance, the miraculous Host was eventually carried in a solemn procession to the church; and the home of the sick man in which the miracle took place was soon turned into a chapel, and the fireplace was carefully preserved. Since then, there has been a yearly procession in the city in commemoration of that miraculous event.
About 100 years later in 1452, a great fire destroyed most of the small and mainly-wooden town of Amsterdam and engulfed the “Holy Place” where the miracle took place. When the fire was finally extinguished, another miracle was discovered. Lying amidst the smoldering ruins, untouched by the fire, was the pyx containing the miraculous Host.1
In 1578, after the Reformation, Roman Catholicism was suppressed, and the procession was forbidden by Amsterdam’s Calvinist Town Council. In defiance, however, the procession continued in silence without hymns and prayers and has continued to this day. Some 10,000 Catholics from Holland and nearby countries gather every year to march in silence in memory of the miraculous Host. Indeed, on Saturday March 20, 1999, I joined friends in Amsterdam and marched with them in the silent procession at night, starting from the “Holy Place” and then into the city center.
It is also possible that Our Lady of All Nations chose to appear in the city of Amsterdam because by all accounts, since the 18th century, Amsterdam became one of the most cosmopolitan places in Europe. In fact, as of 2015, the city is home to almost 190 nationalities, second only to London.
It is, therefore, not surprising that, during the apparitions of Our Lady of All Nations to Ida in 1945, she also experienced a profusion of Eucharistic miracles, which began on July 17, 1958. I discovered that it was on a Thursday, the night of the week on which Jesus instituted the Eucharist before His crucifixion on the following day. The experiences concluded on March 25, 1984, once more on the feast of the Annunciation, when she conceived and eventually gave birth to the “Eucharist.” Indeed, when I first visited Ida at her home thirty-four years later, on July 17, 1992, as she opened the door to greet me, she exclaimed: “Hello! Did you know that today is the anniversary of the miracle?” At that time I did not!
About the first Eucharistic experience, Ida wrote in her diary: “As I opened the tabernacle, a very bright Light appeared before my eyes. In that light I saw three figures linked with one another in a semicircle. They were of extreme whiteness… Then something very peculiar took place. The three figures expanded slowly, becoming larger and larger, until they formed a semi-circle. After this, they joined together to form a circle. Subsequently, the figures spread out toward the center, and then only a tiny dark spot remained. Suddenly, that spot too was filled so that, all at once, a very great sphere of white fire stood before my eyes. I looked at it, and all of a sudden I recognized the Sacred Host, and suddenly everything appeared again as usual.” This Light was reminiscent of Jesus, who once said, “I am the light of the world. He who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” (Jn 8:12).
Ida had fifty-six mystical Eucharistic experiences, which, as I said above, ended on March 25, 1984! As she wrote in her diary: “During Holy Mass at Holy Communion, I saw a bright Light coming and spreading over all those present. After receiving Our Lord, I heard a voice saying very clearly: ‘The period of the Lady of All Nations as Coredemptrix is drawing nigh.’ Heavenly music then sounded in my ears, and I saw a lustrous crown sparkling like diamonds. Then everything faded away, and the Light slowly disappeared.”
Twenty-eight years after the beginning of the Amsterdam apparitions, Our Lady appeared in Akita, Japan, in 1973, and spoke to Sr. Agnes Sasagawa through a wooden statue in the convent carved by a Japanese sculptor from a prayer card with a picture of Our Lady of all Nations standing in front of the Cross. These apparitions in Akita are in certain ways, at least to me, the most important of all Church-approved apparitions of Our Lady.
Extraordinary Eucharistic events also occurred in Akita, Japan. They began on June 12, 1973, during the month dedicated to the Sacred Heart. Once more, when researching the calendar of 1973, I found that June 12 also fell on a Thursday! Sr. Agnes Sasagawa, a stigmatist and a humble Japanese nun of the Institute of the Handmaids of the Eucharist, an appropriately-named Order of nuns, saw mysterious rays suddenly emanate from the tabernacle in the chapel.
She described the events in her diary. “Suddenly, I saw a blinding Light shining from the tabernacle. I immediately prostrated myself in adoration; and when I lifted my eyes, I then saw a soft Light which enveloped the altar like a mist or a dense smoke in which appeared a cohort of angels turned towards the Blessed Sacrament, and their pure and clear voices proclaimed ‘Holy, Holy, Holy’ (Isaiah 6:3). When they finished, I heard a voice on my right praying the prayer of the Handmaids which was composed for the Community by Bishop John Ito: ‘Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, present in the Holy Eucharist, I consecrate my body and soul to be entirely one with Your Heart, being sacrificed at every instant on all the altars of the world and giving praise to the Father, pleading for the coming of His kingdom. Please receive this humble offering of myself. Use me as You will for the glory of the Father and the salvation of souls. Most Holy Mother of God, never let me be separated from your Divine Son. Please defend and protect me as your special child. Amen.’”
On Thursday, June 28, the eve of the feast of the Sacred Heart, Sr. Agnes again saw a blinding Light coming from the Blessed Sacrament and a multitude of angels surrounding the altar in adoration before the Host. The statue of Our Lady of All Nations came to life, and a voice of indescribable beauty was heard from the statue: “Do you say well the prayer of the Handmaids of the Eucharist? Then, let us pray together.” As Sr. Agnes recited the words “Jesus, present in the Eucharist,” the voice from the statue interrupted her and said: “From now on you will add ‘TRULY.’” Then they prayed together: “O Sacred Heart of Jesus, truly present in the Holy Eucharist, I consecrate my body and soul to be entirely one with Your heart…”
It was on October 13, 1973, that Our Lady made this unparalleled, apocalyptic, but conditional prediction: “As I told you, if men do not repent and better themselves, the Father will inflict a terrible punishment on all humanity. It will be a punishment greater than the flood, such as one will never have seen before. Fire will fall from the sky (cf. Pt 3:1) and wipe out a great part of humanity. The survivors will find themselves so desolate that they will envy the dead. The only arms which will remain for you will be the Rosary and the Sign left by my Son. Each day recite the prayers of the Rosary.
“The work of the devil will infiltrate even into the Church in such a way that one will see cardinals opposing cardinals, bishops against bishops. The priests who venerate me will be scorned and opposed by their confreres… The Church will be filled with those who accept compromise, and the demon will press many priests and consecrated souls to leave the service of the Lord.”
Indeed, these latter predictions about the Church have come to pass over the years, and even to this day! However, Our Lady ended by saying: “I alone can save you from the calamities which approach. Those who place their confidence in me will be saved.” Let us recall that, before she died in 1920, little Jacinta of Fatima said, “Tell everyone that God has entrusted the peace of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.”
With respect to the “fire,” it certainly will not be the sun. The sun is a nuclear furnace which changes hydrogen into helium by nuclear transmutation and in the process of other changes, a tremendous amount of energy is released. Indeed, what is meant by God to sustain life on earth by providing light and warmth for our existence, has now been mimicked by man using the same nuclear process to destroy life on earth. As J. Robert Oppenheimer exclaimed after the first test in Los Alamos in the USA, “Now, I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.”
It can therefore refer to an exchange of man-made nuclear bombs. In fact, Einstein also once said, “I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones!”
But as an amateur student of astrophysics and a keen follower of NASA’s reports, I do believe that the possible “fire” could also refer to asteroids or meteors which on impact at high speeds will have the same nuclear effect. In fact, Our Lady of All Nations did warn us in Amsterdam, “There are meteors; watch out for them.”
The statue of Our Lady of All Nations in Akita wept 101 times. The tears began on January 4, 1975, and ended on September 15, 1981, the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows! Then, on September 28, 1981, the angel said to Sr. Agnes: “There is meaning to the figure 101. This signifies that sin came into the world by a woman, and it is also through a woman that salvation came to the world. The ‘zero’ between the two signifies the Eternal God who is from all eternity unto eternity. The first ‘1’ represents Eve, and the last ‘1,’ the Virgin Mary.” In short, the angel was confirming that Mary is the Woman of Genesis 3:15 and the Second Eve, the Coredemptrix and companion of the Redeemer.
But this warfare, this “enmity” between the ancient serpent and the woman of Genesis 3:15, reads in full: “I will put enmity between you and the woman, between your seed and her seed. She will crush your head and you will lie in wait for her heel”—the heel meaning, according to St. Louis de Montfort, her faithful children and followers.
And so, we, “her seed,” are also engaged in a spiritual warfare with the forces of evil in high places (cf. Eph 6:10-13); and, as Paul preached, we must “put on the whole armor of God” (Eph 6:11). In like manner, the Queen of Peace in Akita, speaking through the statue of Our Lady of all Nations, when warning us of the possibility of a cataclysm “worse than the Flood,” said: “The only arms which will remain for you will be the Rosary and the Sign left by my Son.”
As for the “Sign,” most interpret it as referring to the Eucharist. This would be in accord with the dream of Don Bosco in 1862, when he saw two pillars of salvation, one surmounted by a Host and the other by an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary. On the other hand, a few have also interpreted the “Sign” as referring to the Cross, which was seen by Emperor Constantine in 312 A.D.—In hoc signo vinces (“In this Sign you will conquer”). But as Our Lady of All Nations also said in Amsterdam in 1951, “All men must return to the Cross, and only then will peace and tranquility reign.”
Indeed, it was in anticipation of His sacrifice on the Cross that Christ did what He did at the Last Supper. It was the unbloody prefiguration of His Passion which He had to experience on the following day when the first High Mass would be celebrated on a hill. Calvary was the altar stone, but on that day it was to be the bloody Sacrifice of Christ, who was both Priest and Victim. He was sinless, but He took upon Himself the sins of the world. He said: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Lk 23:34). It was the “confiteor” (“act of contrition”). But in that High Mass, there were no pews. Stabat mater. The Mother stood at the Foot of the Altar. She was there all through the bloody Sacrifice of her Son; and when, in a loud voice, He cried out: “It is finished,” it was the Ite, missa est.
“Do this in remembrance of me” (Luke 22:19). The Eucharist is offered again and again at each daily Mass all over the world. It is the outward and visible sign of our Redemption won for us by the Sacrifice, Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Though He died, it is the unbloody Sign of His undying love for mankind. It is the Sacrament of Love, and according to The Catechism of the Catholic Church; it is also the Sacrament of conversion (CCC 1423).
Unfortunately, instead of heeding the words of Our Lady, the world is progressively degenerating; and there is violence and wars and rumors of wars everywhere. Never has the world known such times or such a decline of faith and morals. In fact, many have sought to have the motto, “In God We Trust,” removed from all U.S. currency! At a time when the United States was in the grips of a Great Depression, on March 4, 1933, President Franklin Roosevelt said: “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” However, there is no time for fear. There is only time for prayer—and to do as Our Lady says. We therefore have a choice—conversion or cataclysm. Time is short.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us. Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us who have recourse to thee.