Desolation or Poustinia? It is Up to Us.

Desolation

By Charlie Johnston

One of the things that has troubled me since this whole quarantine thing began is that one of the devil’s primary tools for damaging people is to isolate them. With much of the whole world now self-isolated, it can easily become the devil’s playground. Certainly, it has in some cases. I am utterly appalled at how many officials have assumed authoritarian power – and authoritarian power that has little relation to what is needed to navigate this trial.

I am utterly horrified at how many officials have shamelessly lied to leverage the crisis for more money or more influence. The old politician in me is baffled at how the establishment media and most of the Democratic Party could possibly think that playing Beavis and Butthead throughout the crisis is a good look for them that will pay long-term benefits. Democrats have constantly tried to leverage fear over the virus to try to enact their favored socialist policy enthusiasms. Holding people’s health hostage to accomplish what they can’t at the ballot box seems a striking brand of insanity to me. But even Democrats seem, at heart, to understand that this is not a winning play. Two high-level officials in their party have largely sought to deal responsibly with the crisis, putting the interests of their constituents first. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and California Gov. Gavin Newsom have acted as serious, sober officials trying to manage a crisis. Now Democrats are frantically trying to figure out a way to draft Cuomo as their presidential nominee. It has not escaped my notice that they are looking to one of the few men in their party who has acted as a statesman rather than to one of the many Beavis’s in their ranks. I deeply disagree on most policy ideas of both Cuomo and Newsom, but they have acted as the great majority of officials acted in nobler times in this country – attacking the crisis on behalf of all their citizens rather than trying mainly to leverage it for partisan advantage. I think the cynicism of the philosophy of “never letting a crisis go to waste” is going to backfire mightily on Beavis and company.

Then we turn to Butthead, the establishment media. They are obviously and completely uninterested in finding and reporting information useful to getting through this crisis. In fact, they seem to gleefully cheer the crisis on – hoping that if enough Americans die or the economy is damaged enough it will hurt Donald Trump – all while sitting in the cocoon of their continuing paychecks. They routinely change positions on a dime, always guided by what is most likely to damage Trump. Just over a week ago, they were calling chloroquine a “false hope” purveyed cruelly by Trump. Now they are calling it a potential breakthrough and trying to pretend that Trump was not out in front on it. In a crisis that is novel, early positions do not matter as much as how a leader adapts to unfolding developments. Brit Hume posted video of Dr. Anthony Fauci minimizing the potential crisis on Jan. 21, not to discredit Fauci, but to demonstrate that it is a fool’s errand to demand that anyone have as much clarity of vision as a crisis unfolds as they will in hindsight. I hope that, when this ends, about 80 percent of the establishment media truly feel Americans’ pain by losing their jobs for having been such callous, deceptive low-lifes who reveled in Americans’ pain so long as they thought it could help them in their mad quest. They are so maliciously obsessed they make Captain Ahab and Inspector Javert look like the souls of moderation.

As it stands now, it has become clear that the Wuhan Virus is much more dangerous than a common cold or flu – but primarily to a targeted population. It is dramatically dangerous – and potentially fatal – to people who have other chronic conditions, such as a compromised immune system, diabetes, obesity and some other issues. Even older people generally seem to weather it well IF they do not have the other complicating factors. It is time to work diligently on how to re-open society and get the economy moving again, while enacting protocols to protect those cohorts which are most vulnerable to this. The service manager of an auto repair shop wrote a very nice piece on the real-world consequences to ordinary people of this shutdown.

I do not blame ordinary folks for obeying draconian rules, many of which were arbitrary and unnecessary. I do expect all of us, as this passes, to hold those leaders who exercised arbitrary power without reasonable cause, to account. Send them packing.

I don’t blame Bishops and religious leaders for shutting down services on the orders of secular authorities. I do expect them to prepare for a stand when many of those secular authorities, inevitably, try to use future crises to deny people freedom of religion and religious worship as a matter of ideological policy. Almost all the establishment media and many officials have thought this was a good excuse to act like China.

Yet if the devil seeks to first isolate many of those he would destroy, there is the old Russian concept of Poustinia. A Poustinia is a desert place where you go to meet the Lord, to contemplate Him, and to grow in holiness before Him. All the great prophets – and even Christ, Himself, went into the wilderness in preparation for their public ministry. The desert can be a place of madness and destruction or a place of growth into an iron faith and fortitude.

A few days ago, our commenter Victura made an absolutely inspired posting. Victura is a Priest in the upper Midwest. I have met him personally. I had the very good fortune of having him offer opening prayers at a presentation I gave a few years back. In order to keep us focused on living a Poustinia, rather than going to our destruction, I offer his comment in its entirety:

“I’ve been a priest for 22 years now, and one experience that has always amazed me is how the dying and the terminally ill are able to make decades of spiritual progress in a matter of months. A few examples: men who have struggled with ego all their lives who quickly find the grace of heartfelt humility; tight-fisted materialists who give away their possessions; entitled and privileged souls who discover the virtue of gratitude; some hardened by years of anger, who offer their heart’s forgiveness to those who have hurt them…all this they do within the span of months, or even weeks. Why such sudden progress? Because they suddenly see the truth of their human condition, and choose to act on the truth they see. The proximity of death drew a clear distinction between the things that matter, and the things that never did. However, I’ve seen some others who harden their hearts at the doorstep of death. Even faced with terminal illness, some refuse to discuss it, others sulk in a miasma of impenetrable sadness, and a few grow very angry. I remember one hospital visit in particular. The family of a terminally ill man had asked me to visit their loved one as he lay dying. As I approached his room, the man took sight of my Roman collar and asked, “are you a Catholic priest?” When I answered “yes,” he shouted aloud in a spine-chilling voice, “get out! GET OUT OF HERE!” What’s the difference between these two reactions? The difference is certainly not their circumstances. Rather, it’s the acceptance or denial of the truth of their condition. It reminds me of the two thieves who died side-by-side with Jesus on Good Friday. The good thief accepted his suffering, his mortality, and his place before God, and he repented. As Abp. Fulton Sheen used to say, “his very last theft was to steal paradise.” We don’t know what happened to the bad thief, but the last time we checked, things weren’t looking too good. None of us can control what might come from this crisis, but our sheer powerlessness makes our condition very much like the terminally ill, or a condemned criminal. I’m so grateful for the level-headed reasoning on this blog, now more than ever. What matters now is not what might happen next, but our faith-filled response to it. It’s a time to learn what Jesus meant when he said, “blessed are the poor in spirit.” Our faith and good cheer will be a fount of blessing much more for others than for ourselves. Did you know that many Roman pagans were converted to the faith when they witnessed the martyrdom of St Lawrence? Remember his faith and good cheer, how had the audacity to crack jokes as he was being grilled alive over an open flame? “You can turn me over now. I’m done on that side!” Even in a moment of torture, he was a sign of hope that brought salvation to many others. That is how we must act as well. Anything in life that makes mincemeat of our plans and brings us to our knees is a blessing in disguise, because it puts us face-to-face with the reality of ourselves, and of God’s providence. Forgive me all my rambling, but I see spiritual gold lying all over the face of the Earth right now, and we’d be fools not to simply bend over and take it.” – Victura

May this Palm Sunday be a Poustinia, a profound encounter with the living Christ for all of us.

(And yes, I did notice that the northern lights above the remote cabin look kind of like a squirrel-CJ)

293 thoughts on “Desolation or Poustinia? It is Up to Us.

    1. Classic. That deserves a celebratory limerick:

      To place second in the battle is the worst.
      Then today –– how ’bout that –– you’re the first!
      Hip hip hooray little scamp
      You finally toppled the champ.
      In persistence you’re clearly well versed.

      BTW, I was on the trail when I saw this first exchange and laughed out loud that you got a comment in before reading the column. Ah, well, I haven’t read it yet either.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. It’s like this wonderful game me & Beckita play together!!! Lol I’m so happy we were able to give you a -laugh out loud- moment on your trail for you in turn just gave me quite a -laugh out loud- moment sitting here in nippy Ohio looking out the window at a rare beautiful blue early morning sky and a good ole cup of java!!! 😂☕️

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      2. Hehehe here’s my second reply MP!!!

        Just one more thing…🙋🏻‍♀️That celebratory poem was just awesome!!! Did you make that up??? Quite good!!! Quite good!!! 👏👏👏

        Also, it’s a little more than nippy in Ohio this morning!!! It’s downright FROSTY!!! It’s 29 degrees!!!🥶 but that thick morning frost looks beautiful in the sun!!! 🌞 🤗

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        1. What self-respecting Irishman and special features editor would pinch a limerick and try to pass it off as his own? Of course I wrote it.

          Finally read the column in the quiet last night and need to publish a correction. I had in fact already read, and thoroughly appreciated, Victura’s portion of the column from an earlier run. As for CJ’s thoughts, I may never again be able to think of hack politicians and the media as anything else but Beavis and Butthead.

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          1. Ha!!! I knew you had to have written that yourself MP!!! Pure geniusnessnessnessnessnessnessistic!!!!!!🤗🐿👏👏👏👏👏👏👏

            I read this last post to Michael last night (God bless him…all his years of working with his hands -cars-machinist-foundrywork) he can’t use his fingers anymore for little phones!!! Lol so I read it to him..,he cracked up at the Beavis & Buttead part too!!! 😂😂😂

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  1. Excellent Charlie and Victura, thank you for reposting it Charlie. Loved it the first time and even more so the second reading. It causes me to think of two passing I witnessed. One, my mother’s, the tenderness of God’s touch was beautiful and holy.
    The other, my step-mother-in-laws, arrows and fire shot from her eyes at my husband and me during her passing.
    I can’t help but think of those poor dear souls and their wretchedness. And Jesus’ pain…he died for them, and Judas, and the other thief, and all the others like that. Is it possible for us to pray for them and those prayers be applied that at the moment of their death they will say yes to the Lord? Could it be even for the likes of Hitler? Lord, have mercy on me a sinner. Feeling rather weepy at the plight of us poor dumb sheep.

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    1. Http, I attribute my Grand Mothers (both) prayers for my conversion. Both prayed the Rosary and attended daily mass.So, yes, prayer works and since God is outside of time, we may pray for those like Hitler for their conversion.

      If anything, it will demonstrate the Mercy of God for one and all, dispalying all the soul had to do was to ask forgiveness. It is up to them to accept.

      Yesterday’s Plenary Indulgence was for a friend of the family who recently died. Today’s was for his brother who died 20-30 years ago. When I visited the cemetary, I prayed for the Brothers and thought of the joy when I see them again.

      Tomorrow’s Plenary Indulgence will be for a Sailor whom I knew of, beer can racing in Western Long Island Sound. He was 91. He was a who’s who in the sailing community and passed his knowledge onto his son, who is a renowned (infamous) J-29 National champion.

      Fr. Victura is spot on regarding Gold. I have heard it said no greater mercy exists than to help someone who has no way of helping themsleves, like a soul in Purgatory.

      Liked by 8 people

      1. I love J -24’s and J-29’s!!! I actually think we have a one design class of racing J-29’s currrently at SSC???!!! Sandusky Sailing Club- I gave up sailing years ago when I started having kiddos and they got rid of MORC fleet… was just time to move on, but my hubby says I can sail a boat better than I can drive a car!!! Whoosh… love the whoosh sounds of sailing in heavy air!!! Right Desmond??? ⛵️

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        1. i never commanded nor crewed in any J-Boat. I would have liked to do so. But by the time they came out in the mid-1970’s, I was already a married man with e children – aged 1-5. As it was, by that time I was age and responsibility relegated to more casual craft – hee in the Rocky Mtn. Region. I grew up adjacent for the most part to salt water, in British Columbia & Washington State. But Jean’s health suffered badly in the damp of the Pacific Northwest, so in our first year of marriage, we relocated to the dryer climate of Colorado. Here, due to the relative paucity of ‘open water’ – you must drive many miles to find anything large enough for a full fun day of sailing.

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            1. I still have a reasonably good voice – but not even remotely what it once was. Charlie is also 15 years my junior. When I was his age I still had a pretty good voice.

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                    1. Ok so this is really wierd in a very good way!!! I just put in the first disc of the series “The Chosen!” and it PLAYED!!! Last night we tried it over and over like 10 times and it would not work at all!!! Thank you dearest Jesus!!!🤗🙏❤️🌹

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                    2. Awesome that it worked this time. I’m looking forward to your reviews. 🙂

                      One thing I really appreciate is the depiction of miracles as MIRACLES ~ not just explained away as sometimes happens. The people who encountered Jesus and recognized Him as the Messiah found that they had no other explanation ~ the miracles, suited to the individuals, were so great.

                      The same is true today, although (as in my case) the miracles are not necessarily stupendous. We just recognize . . . .

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                    3. Sr. Bear I truly think it was one of those miracles “recognized” that the first disk even played yesterday…. my hubby n I were both scratching our heads last night when I showed him…see it works now! It didn’t the night before!!! Thank you again, Jesus and also to a beautiful intercessor who may have prayed for the dvd to work 🤗📀!!! I love miracles!!!❤️❤️❤️

                      So we watched the first episode and I found it ABSOLUTELY engaging!!! First off, I LOVE Saint Mary Magdalena and I pray to her often for I love the way she loves Jesus with such a pure and rescued heart and I love the way Jesus stuck up for her in her distress! One could meditate just on that scene for hours alone!

                      The first episode didn’t get into all that yet but it was deeply moving going into her childhood and how she ended up in such a sad state! The rescue gave me goosebumps!

                      Can’t wait to see episode 2 tonight on this Holy Thursday!!! So glad Charlie told us all about “The Chosen!!!” Btw I’m really loving ALL the chosen actors thus far!! Peter, Andrew, the tax collector!!! Feels like you’re right there!!!🤗❤️🙏🌹🐻📀🇺🇸🐿🙋🏻‍♀️👣

                      Happy Holy Thursday, Sr. Bear!!! God bless and keep you safe always!🤗❤️

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                    4. Dear Linda ~ I’m so happy that you and your husband appreciate Episode 1. It’s a moving and plausible (if not completely historical) meditation on the backstory of Mary of Magdala and her first encounter with Jesus. It also plausibly (tho imaginatively) gives a deeper understanding of Mary’s often being referred to as “the Apostle to the Apostles.” In The Chosen, this didn’t just start on Easter morning. I’ll refrain from further commentary ~ we want to keep things a surprise for others. 🙂

                      God bless and keep you on this most unusual Holy Thursday ~
                      Sister Bear

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                    5. Lambzie and I watched all 8.  It’s so sad now, we have to wait for new episodes ☹We ordered them cause of you Sr. Bear.  So thanks!—- Sent from Doug’s Back Pack

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                    1. Oh yes!!! On it today… lol. Oh well.. can throw that sacrifice into the bag of the others during this global pandemic😂😂😂 hahaha!!! Funny how pandemics and world wide lock downs put disappointing things in perspective!!! Ps.. Charlie, you had put a great post up a year ago today on grace!!! Worthy to re-read…really good!!! I’ll go fetch it now!🤗🙏❤️🐿👣

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          1. Btw those darn J-24s were super fast on a racecourse!!! My dad had a lindenburg 26 at that time..,race machine too but those darn J’s would come out of nowhere!!! Ps…what a thoughtful husband you were to Jean to move away from a dangerous climate for her!!! That was a great TNRS!!!⛵️🤗🙏❤️🌹👏

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            1. My grandfather, Robert Purdy (my mother’s father) was a racing sailboat builder from way back before he moved to Pascagoula , MS to build ships during WWll.
              His family owned the Purdy Boat Company and one of thier most famous works was the Aphrodite, built for multimillionaire John Hay Whitney. Some of Aphrodite’s guests over the years were Fred Astaire, Sir Laurence Olivier, Spencer Tracy, Katharine Hepburn, Henry Ford II, FDR advisor Harry Hopkins, Nelson Rockefeller and Shirley Temple.
              One of my family members published a book on the company with diagrams and invoices of some of the racing sailboats in it. There is a Facebook page dedicated to the Purdy Boat Company.
              Needless to say, several of my family members are boat owners and a few boat builders.
              My mom’s sister and her husband carried passengers back and forth to islands in the Caribbean as a business for several years. Interestingly, both my uncle’s legs were paralyzed from a racecar accident but it didn’t stop him from Captaining that sailboat alone with my aunt!
              He also learned to walk without crutches even though he could not move either leg from the waist down!
              Amazing fellow!

              Liked by 3 people

              1. Phillip Frank that is FASCINATING!!! So much more to say but I’ll wait until tomorrow because it’s blowing like stink here!!! Aka storming!!!⛵️🤗😂 and a bit of lightning too and I want to look up your family boat ⛵️ company!!! Just so cool!!!! Who knew?!?!??

                Liked by 1 person

              2. Hi Phillip Frank!!!

                I wanted to respond more to your piece last night but we were getting some really bad bad storms! I think a tornado touched down not too far from here and 80,000 people in the upper northeast of Ohio were this morning without electricity! yikes!

                Well anyhow…I told my hubby about your families purdy boat company and he said he feels like he’s heard about it before! I looked it up on facebook and am following it now too! What an amazing sailing family you have!

                My brother and his wife, Polly are currently in the Virgin Islands. They sailed their 62 foot C & C from Lake Erie starting last summer. They are newly retired and always wanted to do it! I’m not sure their timing is right but I do pray for them daily! I guess they are really going after drug lords in that region thanks be to God for to be in the Virgin Islands these days can be a little bit risky!

                But anyhow, thanks for sharing about your families Purdy Boat Company!!! It’s so very interesting!!

                God Bless!!!

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  2. Thank you Charlie! A reporter said a day or so ago, that this was the first year we wouldn’t be celebrating Easter. He couldn’t be more wrong about that. I love the cartoon “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” Yes he took the gifts, decorations & even the “roast beast”, but the people of Whoville still welcomed Christmas. He could not steal Christmas & the Coronavirus cannot steal Easter. Christ is alive! He is Risen! A Blessed Holy Week and Happy Easter to you all!

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  3. I think I’m going to have to disagree with you on the virtue of these 2 governors. I just read this morning that Newsome just stated that the virus offers an opportunity for democrats to advance their progressive agenda. And remembering his father I cannot think of anything positive to say about Cumo. I’m stilled convinced that Cumo is always and only for Cumo

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      1. Well I’ll defer to your better judgements on politicians. I’ve grown rather cynical when it comes to politicians, doubly so Democrats. My cynical reply would be, yea their serious and sober as long as things fit their agenda! LOL! Love your work and insights. Thanks

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      1. It would be best to use links to show what you mean and give context. You may well protest Cuomo’s actions, but you should note that he plans to take 20% of the UNUSED ventilators from upstate and redeploy them to the city where they are needed – and promises to return them after the pandemic is ended. No part of his plan involves leaving any of the people of the state unprotected. If your plan would be to let people die in the city while you hold on tightly to your UNUSED ventilators, well, I’m glad you are not the governor of anything.

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        1. CJ: On Sunday 4/5/2020 in the Philadelphia Inquirer an article by Maureen Boland on her Coronavirus ordeal appeared. You can find this article by googling: Maureen Boland Philadelphia Inquirer 4/5/2020. Bottom line BEFORE she was incubated with a breathing tube she was given hydroxychloroquine and Zithromax (Zpack). She started recovery right away. You can read her story. Sunday night the local news reported on a man who had been incubated for 17 days. They reported that all covid-19 patients who had been incubated in the area up to that point had died. The man in the report was treated intravenously with Remdesivir an Ebola treatment and shortly after went home. Here’s the link:
          https://6abc.com/covid19-cases-us-Coronavirus-symptoms/6079477/
          Then I found this report on ventilators and covid19 which supports the the local TV news report that most incubated covid19 patients die. Here is the report
          https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2020/04/02/826105278/ventilators-are-no-panacea-for-critically-ill-covid-19-patients
          My conclusion as a family member is this. If I had a family member hospitalized for covid19 before being ventilated I would beg the doctors for hydroxychloroquine and Zithromax and point to this woman’s story of recovery. If incubated I would beg them to try Remdesivir and point to the man’s recovery and that incubation is not a cure per the third article (which the doctors and nurses probably already know). Tonight a Philadelphia police officer 9 months from retirement and incubated died. Why wasn’t he given Remdesivir? I wanted the community here to have these reports. The reports are a little extra knowledge they might need.

          Liked by 6 people

          1. Frankly–I do fault for Dr. Fauci for having dissed this safe medical treatment as owning merely “anecdotal” evidence for effectiveness, and corresponding reluctance from the FDA to support its use until randomly selected controls are not given the treatment–which the French medical authority (now reporting on 1000 medical cases treated with only a few deaths of otherwise sick patients) stating is unethical–and he is right. Letting people die to “prove” a statistical point is immoral.

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  4. This is such an accurate summary of current events, and how we may even benefit from the crisis, that I’m sending it to my Democrat friends. Might even be a wake up call for them–at least I can hope for that.

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  5. I’m reminded of the old adage; nothing focuses your attention like the hangman’s noose. I pray everyone will reappraise their priorities and come to the truth of Christ’s will for them, and then do it!

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  6. “but I see spiritual gold lying all over the face of the Earth right now, and we’d be fools not to simply bend over and take it.”

    Amen Father. People that turned away from me because of my beliefs are reaching out to say hello. It is a wonderful time to “reconnect” with so many who have lost their way. I pray that the good Lord can use me to be a sign of hope to others.

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    1. I love this SanSan – and I hope some will remember how often I have told people who asked how to convert their friends and family to live what they preach with calm fidelity, be cheerful and welcoming, and that God, Himself, will direct people in crisis to these attractive qualities in you – but in His time, not yours.

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      1. Well, seems a couple of those that have “reconnected” have not changed their stripes. I do care for their souls, but this is a bridge too far–at least for me. I totally give them to the Lord. I wish I was better equipped mentally and emotionally to listen to there brainwashed propaganda. 😦

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  7. Hi Charlie and Victura,

    Thank you both for this post. On target as always.

    I am interested in hearing what is going on in our country regarding the Coronavirus, but I am so tired of all of the political rhetoric and posturing. “Just the facts, ” the character Sgt. Joe Friday used to say on Dragnet in the early days.

    I heard that the man who created the “My Pillow” company has retooled to make masks, and has been catching flak for it. I see other people, great examples of American ingenuity, stepping up to the plate to help. One family in northern CA is using their 3-D printers to make face shields for nurses. They are moving up from 3 printers to 10, so they can help out in the crisis. Everyone in the family is pitching in.
    You may have also seen the encouraging report about the man who has taken the Italian use of the bags, like a bubble over the head, which can be used instead of ventilators in many cases. He is making and shipping as many as he and his local community can to hospitals. He is charging the same price for them now as before this crisis. He has also offered the designs free of charge to anyone who will produce these essential items for hospitals.

    https://www.uchicagomedicine.org/forefront/patient-care-articles/helmet-based-ventilation-is-superior-to-face-mask-for-patients-with-respiratory-distress

    There are any number of incredibly inspiring stories around. I wish the media would help us to see the hope out there.

    I am hopeful about the Chloroquine. Perhaps, this could be something to turn things around.

    Thank you Charlie, Victura, and Beckita for helping us to keep hopeful, and to take the Next Right Step.

    I agree with Dianeblvs comment above. I pray for everyone here and your families to have a blessed Holy Week and Easter Season. All of God’s graces, blessings, and gifts of His peace, love, and patience, awaiting the new season of health for us all, our country, and the world.

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  8. Oh wow, Charlie!!! I just LOVED this piece!!! There should be a “love” button to bypass the “like” button!!!

    I have to say Michael and I-were two of the lucky ones to meet Charlie & Victora last spring in the Midwest town!!! Hey to Mick!!!🤗

    Father Victora!!!! If my memory does not deceive me, I remember Charlie saying, “This is Victora on our TNRS ASOH site!!! He doesn’t post too often!!!” I think he should MORE!!!What insights!!! Wish I could sit in his pew daily!!! Just a beautiful soul in him!!!🤗

    Interesting times we are in!!! We are feeling the desert you speak of in our neck of the woods as Charlie described.., I’ve been lucky enough yet to get to go to our local parish daily and just sit with Jesus and Mary and pray my flame 🔥 of love rosary- most of the time all by myself!!! It’s just surreal and I can’t wait to go again tomorrow!!!

    The times are strange and hard but I like this time to be with God and just slow down!!!

    Everyone is beginning to wear 😷 here!!! Just surreal!!! I know our local hospital is getting more cases but I don’t see the dire situation yet! Very mysterious times!!! GOD BLESS US ALL EVERY ONE OF US🤗❤️🌹

    TNRS ASOH

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    1. Thank you Linda! If I do not post more often, its because I’m busy trying to be faithful to the “post” that God has given me–my parish. 🙂

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  9. In all sincerity, I just think this is the opening salvo and a test drive for what is coming. It definitely is a time to prepare in the desert for what will be the mission ahead. As Fr John Riccardo says, “We were born for this!” Time to buckle up and get our spiritual houses in order. Definitely time to surrender to Jesus (Surrender Novena is amazing) and beg the Holy Spirit to give us the courage and wisdom to always say Yes to God.

    I know through obedience that Charlie can no longer provide prophecy – but I believe the Revelation was spot on. Maybe the interpretation or timing was off – but folks we are there now. I think we were given a four year reprieve to bring in more souls. Perhaps we will not see Trump finish his presidency. If we do – then thank God we were given more time. But the labor pains are here now. Even Bill Gates vaccine can be seen as part of the One World Government plan.

    We’ve been praying for Thy Kingdom Come Thy Will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven! God is answering that prayer now. We know not how or when but that He is!

    Perhaps he is taking home to him souls that would otherwise be lost in what is still to come.

    My guess is that many of us on this site are now having vivid and prophetic dreams. Scripture is being unveiled in real time now.

    It is Go time! Many times I feel like Gideon and want to hide behind the wine press. but the Lord can use his remnant to win the battle. I hear the shofar – time to suit up daily for battle! Helmet of Salvation – check! Belt of truth – check! Shield of Faith – check! Sword of the spirit- check!

    Who is with me?

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    1. I’ve always wondered and have even posted a few times if it won’t be President Trump who who would be running and 2020 election may not happen????🤔

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  10. John and Sarah (St. Clare Seeds),

    Since I asked a few weeks back about seeds I had purchased years ago, I wanted to update you that some of my old seeds from St. Clare’s HAVE germinated. They were food saved and frozen for a long while now and dated 2014!!!! Woohoo! I still have A LOT of other seeds from you for 2015, 2016 and 2017. Praying those will also germinate when needed. And….. we just ordered some new ones today :).

    God Bless all,

    Becky-TN

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  11. I read a worthy meditation a friend sent: It concerned how the first Easter the Disciples were in initial disbelief and were hidden behind locked doors. Only later did they realize that Truly HE HAD RISEN from the dead. So, like the first disciples, many of us too will be on lockdown during this Easter. Let us take the time to pray with the first disciples during this time

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  12. I’ve lost count of how many time I’ve read Fr. Victura’s response at this point, and I’m glad it was posted again in case anyone didn’t get a chance to see it.

    I don’t know what to make of the political aspects of it all, and I don’t know what to make of Trump. I’m going to believe he’s done his best, with what information he had, but boy oh boy did he listen to the wrong people.

    I really wish he would do an evening address to the country where he gives us a solid plan on how to get out of this, and for the love of all things holy, people are afraid to breathe the air out there, and he needs to address that. The depth of fear that these ‘experts’ have put into people— I mean, I’m speechless. He needs to talk about that. There are people walking outside, alone, with masks on. And they are terrified that they are somehow randomly going to inhale a bit of this virus and it’s going to kill them. It’s just reprehensible that this level of hysteria has been perpetuated and carried on. People need to be spanked.

    For my own part, this happened so suddenly that truly a ‘quick’ preparation was near impossible. But for me, and my house, we have fared well. God prepared us well. And I say that as a mom of a household of 9, all with really awful food sensitivities, so there is no ‘beans and rice’ for dinner for us. I have lacked nothing. God put it on my heart to make it to Costco last week on a day when there were no egg restrictions and I was able to stock up for us, even while stores local to me were out. My mom and I were going through seeds today, picking what we were going to plant for this year’s gardens. I’m able to share, and help where I can.

    I know so many people economically devastated by this shut down. Not to ignore the severity of the Wuhan flu, but I know one person who has died from it (and that’s questionable, he was elderly and he wasn’t tested but they are counting as such) , and I know–I don’t even know how many businesses that are now shutting down. That may sound callous to some, but these families… all of the bits and pieces that go into putting business together, the other smaller businesses that are entwined together..it’s a rock in a lake with so many ripples. One goes out of business and it effects countless others— when thousands go out of business? I am overwhelmed at the thought. So many people who one month ago were making good lives for themselves now that is gone. It’s so sad.

    I am hopeful and overwhelmed at the same time. And I’m glad it’s God’s job and not mine. I’m going to go take my next right step and put my Chipmunk to bed.

    Much love and prayers to all here.

    Liked by 9 people

    1. Briana, so glad you were able to stock up for awhile. I agree with you on the state of business and people losing their jobs left and right. How long can it go on? We also own a small business and if our SBA loan doesn’t come through in time, we will be sunk and have to let all our people go. I have a beautiful crucifix on the wall close to my desk, that has been blessed by 10 of my favorite priests, including Saint JP II, and I often go up to it and kiss our Lord’s feet….sometimes take it off the wall and just hug it and talk to Him. Faith in God is what it’s all about these days. Peace, Courage and Faith to everyone here. A Blessed Easter to each and every one of you.

      Liked by 9 people

    2. @Briana Elizabeth: Thank you for sharing how Divine Providence is working in your brood’s life! I don’t think it callous of you to note the interdependence of small businesses and how the downfall of one effects the others. It reminds me of the Body of Christ and the economy of God’s grace. The sooner we get back to work, the better. In the case of this virus, targeted quarantines make sense; universal quarantines do not. I hope that the majority will understand this when the present uncertainty and the fear that it fosters are cleared up with hindsight–blessed hindsight.

      Liked by 6 people

      1. Of course a targeted quarantine. I shop for my older neighbor and her husband, and though both are healthy, they’re in that age bracket and I’d just rather them both stay home until this has calmed down. (Shopping for the home bound would be a great Boy Scout project, or for a Confirmation class project later).

        And I agree, hindsight is going to be a gift in this. A gift that we made it though, and that we hopefully have learned some valuable lessons.

        Liked by 5 people

  13. I love the reference to Poustinia. Catherine Doughtery’s book on Poustinia, and the way she had all her fellow travelers spend a week in retreat in Poustinia really struck home with me. YES, that is exactly where we must be today, in Poustinia. A space away, just you and God, and an icon to focus on. Of course, since I still have a farm to run and 14 folks to feed everyday, I cannot literally get away, so I must do it otherwise. But maybe one day. BTW, I found a priest who doesn’t lock the church doors when he says Mass. And if one places a pix on the altar, it cannot NOT be consecrated also. Awesome, totally awesome to still have Mass and Eucharist!

    Liked by 10 people

    1. The first thing I did upon completing my pilgrimage was to spend three days in a Poustinia cabin at Our Lady of Tenderness Poustinia in the mountains near Estes Park, Colorado. It wasn’t a true Poustinia, for I visited for those three days with Sr. Lucille (who had been Catherine Doherty’s main assistant for two decades before establishing this hermitage).

      Liked by 7 people

  14. I forgot to add in my post up there that I found ONE really good video that was calm, rational, and really informative as to how to not get Wuhan Flu, and it’s very sensible and easy. No fear. Just practical. And I hope that people listen to him, heed his words, and go about their business.

    “Dr. David Price is a critical care pulmonologist caring for COVID-19 patients all day in NYC at Weill Cornell Hospital. This simple, informative and comforting talk is filled with common-sense advice on how to you can protect yourself and family from Coronavirus.”

    https://kj103fm.iheart.com/featured/tj-janet-jrod/content/2020-03-29-doctor-says-dont-be-scared-of-covid-19-just-do-this-and-you-wont-get-it/?cmp=managed_mostrequestedlive&Pname=local_social&Sc=editorial&Keyid=socialflow

    Liked by 8 people

    1. Yes, Briana! I posted this as well…a few articles ago. Thanks for bringing it forward here. I love how this doc gets emotional because he has gotten past his fear now that he has had actual experience working with covid19 patients.

      Liked by 5 people

  15. Actually being a bit of a Melancholic introvert, I wouldn’t mind some time as a hermit or an anchorite. Actually I always thought that the stylites were cool – nothing like living on top of a pillar to get some privacy and quiet time. I’ve taken up Calloway’s book on Consecration to St. Joseph – going to make the formal consecration May 1 – and other spiritual reading.
    I could actually wish for a few days off – Amazon is busier than ever. They have gotten really strong on social distancing and have started taking our temperatures at the beginning of shift.
    I occasionally wonder these days if God is not allowing our own crazy over-reaction to be our own punishment for our previous desire to micro-manage everything. We sit down here saying “I. Must. Control. Everything.” and God looks down and says “Okay, let’s see how that works for you.”
    My brother and SIL were both diagnosed with CV but seem to be getting through it okay- none of the respiratory stuff that some report. One of the weird aspects of this is how differently it seems to effect different people.
    PAX,
    Matthew

    Liked by 11 people

      1. Yes CJ, I too dream of meandering back to the mountains. I hope to go soon enough but for now I’m anxiously watching the collapse unfold in a way I would never have dreamed possible.

        Liked by 4 people

        1. Isn’t that just so, BD? Who woulda’ guessed it would come to this? Hmmmm… You know, it’d be kinda’ fun when everything’s over, and we’re basking in the Light of the full Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, to go back and count just how many times Charlie exhorted us to give up on figuring out the Plan. 🙂 In the days when he was solo moderating and clearing 500+ comments a day – yes, 500+! – I’ll bet he must have said in a bazillion creative ways: Never mind about the details… just gird your loins, set your faces like flint and TNRS.

          Liked by 6 people

          1. You better believe it! I just put an old TNRS shield sticker on my car, today. This is only the second sticker I have ever applied to any vehicle of mine. The first one is a few years old and implores us to pray the Rosary for America. On the TNRS sticker, I took a sharpie and spelled out Take the Next Right Step and Trust Do Love and added asignofhope379.com on the bottom. I am just saying! ❤

            Liked by 4 people

    1. Anyone watch that old PBS show of the guy who went to Alaska and built everything he needed? He lived alone for a long time. For years I have felt a urge to live cloistered but what he did is way out of my skill set.

      Liked by 5 people

      1. Story of Dick Proenneke

        I have the dvd. It is amazing he built the log cabin in two weeks, by himself. I enjoy watching the tv show building alaska and numerous people struggling to build a house and it taking months. Dick, kept it simple.

        Liked by 5 people

    2. Me too, Matthew– I’ve always wanted to do a month long silent retreat. But the rebellious child in me bristles at forced isolation– if it’s not my idea I don’t like it!

      Liked by 2 people

    3. Tha factory I work in started scanning our foreheads as we start our shift. The young woman doing it is jyst takung our temp, but how long before we are scanned for other things?

      Want your pay? get scanned. Got yoyr Bill Gates digital vaccination certificate? Get scanned.

      Its a harbinger of totalitarianism.

      Like the 9/11 post rollout of totallitarian control, this has the same feel to it.

      Liked by 8 people

        1. Especially Gates, Beckita. I remember reading years ago that he donated some kind of vaccine to a third world country and the women started reporting that they were having miscarriages! (It may have been in The Wanderer.) You can imagine what was going on! Don’t trust Gates and his ilk at all!

          Liked by 4 people

  16. Victura’s post was most apropos for these time.
    I took the first post he made, reduced it to a textable length version, and sent it out to a group text we have been using to send faith filled messages to one another.
    It was a big hit!

    Liked by 6 people

  17. Still think the most relevant scripture is Rev 9 – 5th trumpet.
    If we don’t acknowledge God there would be two more (6&7) to come.
    The plague only torments for five months – the subsequent ones (biblically) are truly lethal.
    Currently 0.1% are infected on average. NY 0.6% as a high.
    Mitigation, testing, prophylaxis are all components but prayer and a fundamental change of heart are far more important.
    Avoid gossip – I can always find some one to say something provocative – only once in a while something informative.
    Happy Easter and have a blessed Holy Week retreat.
    Thank you Charlie.
    Vic

    Liked by 8 people

  18. What’s next? Easter miracle followed by illumination of conscience followed by a more intense battle between good & evil. Events lasting months, maybe even up to a couple years (worst case scenario). Economic collapse to usher in socialist control. Or more plagues, disasters, & famines.

    The near future won’t be calm & easy, but at least we can take comfort that God is moving things along and not leaving us helplessly stuck in society’s lukewarm & upside down fake liberal morality.

    It would seem the devil & his allies are trying to gain power by highjacking our current crisis…

    Liked by 10 people

  19. Apparently, this is happening in many communities throughout the country: howling, yelling and cheering in support of medical workers every night at 8pm. Feedback is coming from medical people as they write about it being a shot in the arm.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. HTTP, the squirrel as mascot for this site has a five year history and it began with the story of a flattened squirrel and a Bishop who commented frequently at TNRS back in the day. Such fun bantering it was. In conjunction with the Bishop’s encounter with the squirrel, we discovered Charlie has had a love of squirrels his whole life long. Yup! Essentially, we’re all a bunch of squirrels cracking nuts to spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually feed each other and those around us. 🐿🐿🐿🐿🐿🐿

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Indeed! Today’s Gratefulness Word for the Day made me think of our dear TNRS mascot and timeless challenges. ❤

        Liked by 8 people

  20. As a practicing professional funeral director for 33 years, I can only heartily agree with Fr. Victura’s reflections. It’s true. My deceased dad, who was a marine corps raider on Okiniwa and the Gudal canal, where he saw many of his fellow marines did in action, and who died a holy death at the age of 93, would often tell me, and I quote, “During the course of a man’s life hecan deny so many of Heaven’s solicitudes to live the good life. But what that man cannot deny is the reality of death, and oh how his impending death will change his outlook on life.” It’s true. Fr. Ventura’s thoughts truly highlight that fact of Death’s reality, and over the course of my many years as a funeral director I would come into the sacred space of countless souls who had rectified their lives before they died to the Eternal Destiny that awaited their soul and the aroma of sanctity that was a part of that soul’s human remains was very evident with their passing from this life to the Eternal Realm. Yes, the holy perfume of Heaven’s love that opened the veil for a passing soul to enter was a always a holy moment for me as well.

    Liked by 11 people

  21. Was listening to an interview with Bill Gates that was circulating around. His foundation does a lot of work with vaccine development. During his rambling comments he mentioned something that hit me like a sudden tooth ache. He mentioned something about the necessity to prevent large gatherings of people around the world to control this virus.

    Prevent large gatherings of people? Skirts awfully close to the right to peacefully assemble and to petition the Government to me.

    I’m thinking this is one of those God given rights we contemplate from time to time which are fundamental to a just Government.

    I’m beginning to see signs that this (excuse?? cover?? rationale??) is going to be directed particularly at church and religious gatherings. Not good.

    Liked by 8 people

  22. JESUS = GOOD NEWS! 😉

    YUP!
    https://stream.org/the-american-people-must-pull-together-as-a-family/

    https://www.catholicleague.org/de-blasio-fears-christian-virus/

    https://www.crisismagazine.com/2020/he-who-is-not-against-us

    https://townhall.com/columnists/kurtschlichter/2020/04/06/beware-the-creeps-who-enjoy-their-new-pandemic-power-n2566370

    A friend sent me this Prayer today & asked that I pass along:
    “God, you alone are worthy of honor, glory, and praise. With You, we can overcome every storm, including Covid-19. Right now, we are asking you to heal those who are sick and protect those who are not. Give our leaders extra wisdom as they navigate this pandemic and economic uncertainty. Strengthen your global church. Reveal to us how we can partner together to reach the needs of those around us. Calm our fears. Fill us with your hope, joy, and peace as we continue to trust in you. Use this pandemic to pave the way for spiritual renewal. We want your glory, power, and healing to be on display.
    Come Lord Jesus, Come!, Amen.”

    https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/wuhan-pandemic-silver-linings

    The Usual Suspects …. very busy ;-(
    http://www.floppingaces.net/most-wanted/even-amid-a-pandemic-media-still-dems-best-weapon-americas-greatest-threat/

    https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/2020/04/leftwing-media-try-block-oann-white-house-briefing-joseph-klein/

    https://canadafreepress.com/article/rush-limbaugh-democrats-salivating-over-coronavirus-as-opportunity-to-decap

    Mark Mallett’s latest Post touched on Bill Gates (“great” supporter of entire Global Left Agenda) & “Friends” want to develop new vaccine with some kind of bio-metric tracker/ID embedded. Now!! Only some crazed right wing God/Gun Clinger would conjure up Mark of The Beast paranoia. … Right!? Some worthy once said: “Dictators do not come with guns and bayonets but with smiles and promises.”

    https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/did-bill-gates-just-reveal-real-reason-behind-lock-downs

    GOD SAVE ALL HERE!!

    Liked by 8 people

  23. There is irony, a significant number of people in Canada voted Liberal in last year’s federal election, so they could get handouts, they got the handouts like they wanted, but they’re human ties have been cut! No more visiting friends, family members, & social groups; minimum 2 meter distancing, limited group size, talking through glass, and forced to use technology.

    Liked by 3 people

  24. THE POUSTINIA EFFECT

    I did not previously know the Russian word, Poustinia** though I previously understood the concept. But Jean and I have for the most part been living ‘Poustinia’ for a month and a half or more now. The effect of Poustina – when lived – is to produce great peace and calm in the soul with a growing love and gratitude for God and His grace.

    For us, what I’ve now coined as the ‘Poustinia Effect’ [PE] was and is accidental. I.e., both of us are in our mid to late 70’s, and each of us has “underlying conditions” – me 2 & her 1. Based upon the advice of our personal physicians and all the medical professionals in our family (MD’s and one RN) we self-quarantined prior to civil or religious authorities’ advice on the subject.

    I now view it as God’s great providence for us at this time in our lives. Why? Because – as I’ve been stating to numerous people via email and phone – I’m having the best Lent of my life with no previous one being remotely close. Despite the apparent Coronal carnage around us, we are both at fairly deep and growing peace with both God and man/neighbor.

    I suspect we are far from alone in this.

    It is largely due to this inner peace and calm that I’ve been able to resist all attempts to draw me out of this self-imposed quarantine. I’ve had some good friends previously invite me to come out and play in some public place – large or small makes no difference. I’ve had religious associates try to pressure me and others into attending gatherings wherein I cannot reasonably assume I will be secure from contact infections, such as from the breath of those around me. [I am not saying that is how this 2nd class of inviters view it. Their view appears as simply a myopic, ‘Be not afraid’ view. The other side of the prudential coin, “Tempt not the Lord They God”, does not seem to occur to them as an equally grave part of their prudential balance.

    It doesn’t seem to deeply occur to such types that if I get Covid19 from such contact, I am not just risking harming myself – I could be responsible for the death of my wife of 50+ years.

    In any case, when I married, I promised to love as my own body, and to protect, my wife. If I should bring her home a ‘spiked corona/crown’ for a present and she should die from it – would I be able to credibly then say to God, but my buddies wanted me to come out and play, or, religious associates told me the controlling factor is, “Be not afraid”?

    No, I would be told, I gave you a solid Catholic/Christian moral formation, and a decent brain with which to apply those moral teachings. As my father used to tell me in somewhat similar circumstances when I was a boy, “If so-and-so walked off a cliff, would you just blindly follow him?”

    In the ‘Poustinia Effect’ which I’ve been given by God this Lent, I can resist all innocent attempts to get me to put my spouse at risk – and yet not judge the hearts of those who innocently tried to get me to “come out and play”. Thanks to God’s PE gift to me this Lent, I can see what they cannot seem to see, without judging their hearts.

    **”Encountering God in silence, in solitude, and in prayer.” In olden Russia, a Poustinia was a small hut or cabin where serious Christians would go to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life – in order to get closer to God. I learned this Russian word from an article written by Charlie Johnston.

    All my love in Christ

    Desmond

    Liked by 10 people

    1. Thanks Desmond. Most errors start with a grain of truth than emphasize to the exclusion of all other legitimate truths that are involved in making prudent decisions. I appreciate you sharing your balanced view of how you approached a decision like this. I get a little frustrated when people start tossing out bumper-sticker sloganeering as opposed to prudent and serious consideration – and then try to shame everyone who comes to a different decision.

      Liked by 8 people

      1. Thanks for the intro to the word ‘poustinia’. Some of my local friends were stunned to discover that I didn’t even know the word (given evidently to the fact that we had one here – the same one you visited). Remarks like, “But you know so much about Slavik languages…”, etc., became common in the last few hours.

        Liked by 2 people

  25. So I have a story to share. I am a healthcare worker and I made a terrible mistake in dosing medication for a patient. I accidentally gave her 10x the dose. I have felt so bad because of it. Anyway, the dose was a regular dose in a healthy patient, just not for this particular patient. So they figured it out and she came back in for follow up care. It was then discovered that she was newly pregnant. As part of her regular meds she is taking a very toxic medication. She told the nurse that it was divine intervention. She never would have figured it out in time and due to her age and condition this may be her only chance. Please pray for her and her baby.

    Liked by 10 people

    1. Thanks for the link, Patrick. I’ve been looking forward to this movie’s coming out, and I’ll have to make sure to watch it in the next couple of days (from what I understand, it’s free to watch until Easter Sunday).

      Liked by 8 people

    2. Thanks for the link Patrick. Beautiful witness and really made me reflect on how deep my faith really is and could really be. Happy Easter my friends! Alleluia, He is Risen! ~juls

      Liked by 2 people

  26. (Reuters) – Australia’s highest court on Tuesday overturned former Vatican treasurer George Pell’s conviction for sexually assaulting two teenaged choirboys in the 1990s, allowing the 78-year-old cardinal to walk free from jail.

    In a unanimous ruling, the High Court found that the jury in Pell’s trial “ought to have entertained a doubt” as to Cardinal Pell’s guilt. The court’s seven judges ordered that the convictions be quashed and verdicts of acquittal be entered in their place, meaning Pell cannot be retried on the charges.

    The cardinal began serving a six-year sentence a year ago for the alleged assaults, which the plaintiff said took place when Pell was archbishop of the city of Melbourne.

    Liked by 9 people

    1. Yes, Arwen, that is why I linked to her book. The woman who was her main assistant at Madonna House for two decades, Lucille Dupuis, was a dear friend of mine. In fact, after I finished my pilgrimage I spent three days in a Poustinia cabin at Our Lady of Tenderness Poustinia in the mountains just about seven miles east of Estes Park – visiting with Sr. Lucille. After she left Madonna House, Lucille became a hermitess who started a Poustinia retreat in the Colorado mountains. Alas, Lucille passed away in January of 2014.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. I knew a hermitess who lived in our small town here in Floral City years ago. We knew her as Sr Rose and she had left her failing Order after the craziness in the 1980’s when many an order was formally “changed” or disbanded. She chose to remain a religious and, under a new bishop, became a hermit. My brother, a former monk himself, became good friends with her and was her handyman for many years before she died.

        Liked by 6 people

    1. I can’t help but wonder how many people have headed BACK to Mexico? I remember that during the recession, many Mexican nationals went home because of the lack of work.
      With lockdowns around the world, it has to be just as hard to go home as it is to get here.

      Like

      1. PF, I don’t know the reality, but I did see a few days ago a tweet on Twitter that quoted someone in Mexico who was complaining about all the people who had come back to his neighborhood in Mexico, and that person added that that was playing out in neighborhoods all over Mexico.

        Tell me, PF, if experts say it is impossible to deport 20-30M illegal aliens from the US, how do you actually do it? Might it be done by getting those IAs to deport themselves?

        Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s a powerful message, Linda, which rings ever true today, especially, in light of where we are in this Storm. At the same time, in honoring Charlie’s movement to A Sign of Hope with the focus on writing as he now is doing, it’s probably best not to post it. That said, I saved the message and you can write me at TNRSAnswers: tnrs.answers@gmail.com and I’ll share it with you.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Wow!!! Thanks again Beckita!!! Very powerful indeed!!! You may get a lot more inquiries today!!! I tried to pull all my archived TNRS up and I’m soooo dumb with this stuff I can’t find them!!! I’m like a blind squirrel 🐿 😬😂🙏😁

        Liked by 2 people

  27. Apropos to “Into the Desert” and “Poustinia,” I got a heads up a couple of weeks back that the MLB was seriously considering bringing America’s pasttime to the Arizona desert to get the season going in May. This would entail all 30 teams playing here, basically in a bubble, and without fans in attendance, utilizing the abundant spring ballparks all within a 50 mile radius in metro Phoenix. Add the indoor home field for the D-backs for triple headers, and you’ve got the makings to play ball.

    Teams would be isolated in team accommodations far from home and away from family, not exactly austere cabins in the woods, but not exactly 5-star accommodations either, with travel only to and from the ballparks.

    Critics of the plan quickly pointed out that it can quickly get to 100 degrees + here… uh, yeah, it’s the desert, but I can assure you the kids here have been playing ball in these conditions for a long time, with naught but a love of baseball and the support of some hearty family sweating it out in the dugout or the stands.

    Sure, this is probably not on a lot of your radars, but I can’t help but stop and notice this development. Here’s yet another thing that got too big for its britches… getting whittled down to size with some simplification, and maybe some purifying grace.

    When my middle kid was playing ball throughout the summer here, I remember quite well the multi-field facility where they played out in the cornfields of Mesa. Often double headers, I’d watch every pitch from the ballpark, which were made to look like famous MLB parks such as Wrigley Field, then I’d go walk the long rows of the cornfields in between games, with large and melodious flocks of red wing black birds to help me focus on loftier things.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. I’m also hearing some whining about the players having to be away from their families for months. Shoot, active military routinely deploy away from family to far, far worse locales than this with nary a whimper. And considering all the talk about “the war” on Covid, being on “war footing,” etc., I say man up and embrace Poustinia in so far as it’s offered to you. PLAY BALL!

      Liked by 2 people

        1. The “Monastery League.” I like that. If nothing else, I got to hit the social channels hard in the past couple of days, leveraging the folks I know in sports/sports media with the topic. You know what new word they learned after I learned it here? That’s right, “Poustinia.” Credit it to the CJ Effect.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Good work, MP! We gotta pull whatever strings we can, eh? (Well, I don’t have any strings to pull, but I can still hope and pray for a baseball season). Incidentally, the guy who wrote the article to which I linked is a devout Catholic, which is why I think he coined the term “Monastery League.”

            Liked by 1 person

  28. A prayer for a miracle: the sudden, complete and lasting obliteration of COVID-19.
    Posted on 6 April 2020 by Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

    Almighty and eternal God, who shaped us from the mud of the earth and breathed into us beautiful life and eternal souls made to give You glory, look graciously now upon Your poor creatures who have fallen into sin. We now cry out for mercy, though we have deserved Your wrath and the rod of Your correction and trials. Be appeased. Lift from us this present affliction of disease and its fear as once You withdrew Your destroying Angel from scourging Jerusalem after smiting Israel with the sword of plague. Look kindly on us, kneeling as if upon the threshing floor. Look into our ashen and sackcloth laden hearts which we desire never again to be hardened against the promptings of Your Spirit, and forgive. Forgive the offences so many of Your ungrateful images have committed against the Hearts of our Lord and His Mother. Forgive the countless sacrilegious Communions of the last decades. Forgive Your priests and bishops who in great numbers have abandoned their proper place between Your people and Your altars. Some have committed unspeakable offences, not excluding even manifest idolatry. Forgive all of us every neglect and unworthy deed and thought as well as any lingering attachment to sins. Forgive all the sins that have cried to heaven. Forgive and then give us graces for our fuller sorrow out of love for You, more than our dread of punishment, and also for our firm purpose of amendment. Bold with confidence that the prayers of the converted sinner are precious to You, we now dare to ask You for a miracle. By Your might, annihilate the COVID-19 virus and all its mutations and variations. Restrain this disease, this consequence of sin, and make it to be harmless. We ask that You do this, almighty and merciful God, suddenly, completely, and in a lasting way so that the peoples of the whole world will recognize Your almighty hand and fall upon their faces in wonder, faith and gratitude. By this miracle, reveal Your love and kindness even though we do not merit the least of Your favors. Even while we submit ourselves to Your will, we ask this, Eternal Father, through Our Lord Jesus Christ Your Son, who died for us on Calvary and rose again in glorious impassibility. We ask this through the Holy Spirit the Consoler. We implore this through the intercession of Saint Raphael, Your healing Archangel, as well as through ____. In particular we, now humbled, entrust this audacious petition to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Health of the Sick. Let her intercede for us as the Queen of Heaven whom Your Son will not refuse. “Not to us, O Lord, not to us; but to Thy name give glory.” O God, loving and kind, we beg You to grant us this miracle. Amen.

    Liked by 8 people

    1. Thanks as always for all the news, CD! In your compilation earlier, you referenced Mark Mallett’s new post, The Labor Pains Are Real, and the mention of Gates. I thought of DOUG as I read Mark’s post, and you will see it tie in with your research, Doug, if you read it. Relates to Father Gobbi’s messages to the MMP also. There is SO much going on at so many levels. Mark also says that Kissinger is a 33rd degree Mason and links to K’s op ed. Wow, it’s coming out into the open more and more. All this exposure of evil is to show us to pray harder and harder.
      Come Triumph of the Immaculate Heart! How we need you to defeat Satan!

      Liked by 7 people

  29. Just a little FYI: “Victura” is Latin, and it translates as, “about to conquer.” I chose that name because I believe God’s grace is about to conquer this troubled world, and that the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart is immanent. Christ is “about to conquer,” and God is going to get his people back. We all need a God-centered, boldly optimistic spirit, at this time. 🙂

    Liked by 11 people

    1. Have always loved your screen name, Victura, and Amen to a God-centered, boldly optimistic spirit. It will be especially needed going forward into the most intense days of the Storm yet to come. Still praying for mitigation of the consequences of our disordered ways via the primo mitigating factor: conversion.

      Liked by 6 people

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