The Prophecies of Saint Catherine Labouré

The Prophecies of St. Catherine Labouré
Irapuato  14/09/2013 15:25:12
1) God wishes to make Mary better known in the latter times.

50. God wishes therefore to reveal Mary, his masterpiece, and make her more known in these latter times:
(1) Because she kept herself hidden in this world and in her great humility considered herself lower than dust, having obtained from God, his apostles and evangelists the favour of being made known.
(2) Because, as Mary is not only God's masterpiece of glory in heaven, but also his masterpiece of grace on earth, he wishes to be glorified and praised because of her by those living upon earth.
(3) Since she is the dawn which precedes and discloses the Sun of Justice Jesus Christ, she must be known and acknowledged so that Jesus may be known and acknowledged.
(4) As she was the way by which Jesus first came to us, she will again be the way by which he will come to us the second time though not in the same manner.
(5) Since she is the sure means, the direct and immaculate way to Jesus and the perfect guide to him, it is through her that souls who are to shine forth in sanctity must find him. He who finds Mary finds life, that is, Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth and the life. But no one can find Mary who does not look for her. No one can look for her who does not know her, for no one seeks or desires something unknown. Mary then must be better known than ever for the deeper understanding and the greater glory of the Blessed Trinity.
(6) In these latter times Mary must shine forth more than ever in mercy, power and grace; in mercy, to bring back and welcome lovingly the poor sinners and wanderers who are to be converted and return to the Catholic Church; in power, to combat the enemies of God who will rise up menacingly to seduce and crush by promises and threats all those who oppose them; finally, she must shine forth in grace to inspire and support the valiant soldiers and loyal servants of Jesus Christ who are fighting for his cause.
(7) Lastly, Mary must become as terrible as an army in battle array to the devil and his followers, especially in these latter times. For Satan, knowing that he has little time - even less now than ever - to destroy souls, intensifies his efforts and his onslaughts every day. He will not hesitate to stir up savage persecutions and set treacherous snares for Mary's faithful servants and children whom he finds more difficult to overcome than others.
(St. Louis de Montfort Treatise on True Devotion paragraphs 49-50)

Given the fact that the apparitions at Rue de Bac are considered to be the beginning of this prophesied Marian age which precedes the Second Coming of Christ, it should be worth studying them in some more detail. Rev. Robert J. Billett provides an outline of the visions given to St. Catherine Labouré, the content of which she was instructed to incorporate into the Miraculous Medal:

The mission that God wanted to entrust to Catherine was made manifest to her on November 27, 1830. It was the mission of making and distributing the Medal of the Immaculate Conception, now known as the Miraculous Medal. That day was the Saturday before the first Sunday of Advent. The Sisters were gathered in the chapel as usual for prayers at five-thirty in the afternoon. Suddenly Our Lady appeared to Catherine.
At first Mary appeared standing on a globe and dressed in white having with a long white veil which fell to her feet. The Virgin held in her hands, at the height of her shoulders, a golden ball which she seemed to be offering to God as she raised her eyes to heaven. Her fingers were covered with rings whose precious jewels sparkled brilliantly and showered down innumerable rays of light on the globe beneath her feet, almost obscuring the view of her feet. Mary lowered her eyes and looked directly at Catherine. Mary said nothing, but Catherine heard this message, "The ball which you see represents the world, especially France, and each person in particular. These rays symbolize the graces I shed upon those who ask for them. The jewels which give no rays symbolize the graces that are not given because they are not asked for." Then the apparition changed.
Our Lady appeared with a white dress, a blue mantle, and a white veil which draped back over her shoulders. She was still standing on the globe, and had one foot on the head of a serpent which lay at her feet. The 1830 was marked on the globe. The Virgin had her arms and hands pointed downwards, and a cascade of rays was falling down from both hands onto the globe. An oval frame formed around the Blessed Virgin, and written around within it, in letters of gold, was the beautiful prayer, "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you." This was the front side of the medal that was to be made.
Then the vision revolved to show the reverse side of the medal. Catherine saw a Cross with a bar at its feet with which was intertwined an "M." Beneath the "M" were the Hearts of Jesus and Mary, both surmounted by flames of love, one having a crown of thorns, and other pierced with a sword. Encircling all of this were twelve stars around the oval frame.
(Rev. Robert J. Billett, C.M.F. St. Catherine Laboure and the Miraculous Medal http://www.marys-touch.com/Saints/medal/medal.htm)

The apparitions of the Virgin Mary to St. Catherine Labouré share some striking imagery with the Third Secret of Fatima, and there is clearly an intention here to invite us to draw a point of comparison between the two. The rays of light which emanate from the hands of Our Lady to shine down graces upon the world in the visions of St. Catherine Labouré is reflected in the Third Secret of Fatima, when the Virgin Mary issues dazzling radiance from her right hand in order protect us from the flames of the Angel's flaming sword - which threatens to consume the world in chastisement for its sins:

After the two parts which I have already explained, at the left of Our Lady and a little above, we saw an Angel with a flaming sword in his left hand; flashing, it gave out flames that
looked as though they would set the world on fire; but they died out in contact with the splendour that Our Lady radiated towards him from her right hand: pointing to the earth
with his right hand, the Angel cried out in a loud voice: ‘Penance, Penance, Penance!'.

The front and back images shown on the Miraculous Medal are presented here side-by-side

The rays of light shown falling down upon the world from the hands of Virgin Mary on the
Miraculous Medal thus represent the graces which flow from the hands of Our Lady during the Triumph of her Immaculate Heart. We can be doubly sure that this vision concerns the Triumph of
the Immaculate Heart of Mary in the fact that St. Catherine Labouré saw her standing with one foot crushing the head of the Serpent upon a globe representing the earth. The crushing of the Serpent's head is directly related to the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The twelve stars depicted on the reverse side of the Miraculous Medal inform us that this is the Woman Adorned with the Sun in the Book of Revelation, who is presented with twelve stars around her head (Rev 12:1). And chapter 12 of the Apocalypse is in turn a prophetic expansion of the Protoevangelium of Gen 3:15:

"I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.”
(Gen 3:15)

Rev 12 informs us that when the head of the Serpent has finally been crushed, the Great Dragon is thrown down to the earth, and becoming ever more enraged, continues his pursuit of the Woman, threatening to carry her away with a flood:

Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the
dragon and his angels fought back, but he was defeated, and there was no longer any place
for them in heaven. And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the
earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. And I heard a loud voice in heaven, saying, “Now the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his
Christ have come, for the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down, who accuses them day and night before our God. And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Therefore, rejoice, O heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to you, O earth and sea, for the devil has
come down to you in great wrath, because he knows that his time is short!”
And when the dragon saw that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman who had given birth to the male child. But the woman was given the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness, to the place where she is to
be nourished for a time, and times, and half a time. The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood.
(Rev 12:7-15)

In the vision of St. Catherine Labouré, the Virgin Mary stands victorious over the wicked Dragon as the new Eve, having trod down the Ancient Serpent under her heel. The Immaculate Heart of Mary itself appears on the reverse side in this vision, sharing the same side of the Miraculous Medal as the right hand of the Virgin, from which the Third Secret tells us issues the radiance of flowing grace to save the world from flames, recalling God's promises in the Book of Malachi:

For behold, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble. The day that is coming shall set them ablaze, says the LORD of hosts, so that
it will leave them neither root nor branch. But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness shall rise with healing in its wings. You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall. And you shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day when I act, says the LORD of hosts. “Remember the law of my servant Moses, the statutes and rules that I commanded him at Horeb for all Israel. “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the LORD comes. And he will turn
the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers, lest I come and strike the land with a decree of utter destruction.
(Mal 4)

Without the coming of Elijah to restore the Church, to "turn the hearts of fathers to their children and the hearts of children to their fathers", the earth would be met with a decree of utter destruction in blazing flames, and no one would be saved. Yet in one final outpouring of Divine Mercy before the Day of Judgment, God gives the Two Witnesses to the Church, when the Woman is given "the two wings of the great eagle so that she might fly from the serpent into the wilderness" (Rev 12:14). The arm of the angel with the flaming sword is stayed by the radiance which issues from Our Lady's motherly hands, in order to allow for a period of penance and conversion.

The Immaculate Heart is depicted on the Miraculous Medal as being pierced by the sword of Our Lady of Sorrows (Luke 2:35), and is shown alongside the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The positioning of the Sacred Heart of Jesus alongside the Immaculate Heart of Mary recalls the fact that the consecration of the world to the Sacred Heart of Jesus by Pope Leo XIII in 1899 took place at the beginning of the 100 years of Satan's greater power, and was framed at the end of the 20th century by Pope Bl. John Paul II's consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This may suggest that it these consecrations that must take place before the head of the Serpent is finally crushed, and Satan is cast from heaven at the end of his period of greater power. Devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary is described by Our Lady as the remedy to the vision of hell seen in the first part of the Secret, and it is only through this devotion that the head of the Serpent can be crushed:

"You have seen hell where the souls of poor sinners go. To save them, God wishes to establish in the world devotion to my Immaculate Heart. If what I say to you is done, many souls will
be saved and there will be peace".
(Second Part of the Secret of Fatima)

The vision of St. Catherine Labouré also appears to be connected to Our Lady of Lourdes, given
the fact that the prayer inscribed upon the Miraculous Medal invokes the Virgin Mary as the Immaculate Conception: "O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you." This immediately brings to mind the most famous words of Our Lady of Lourdes: "I am the Immaculate Conception", which were spoken to St. Bernardette Soubirous at the Grotto of Massabielle on 11th February, 1858 - just shortly after the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception was infallibly defined by Pope Pius IX in 1854. The dogmatic teaching of the Immaculate Conception, which is binding on all Catholics, affirmed as a Divinely revealed truth that the Virgin Mary was conceived without the stain of original sin. St. Bernardette, a poor, uneducated peasant girl, could not have possibly known the complicated theological implications of this recently pronounced dogma, and this statement was one of the indicators that confirmed the validity of these apparitions.
This dogmatic teaching provides us with a unique insight into the eschatological significance of the Protoevangelium. Just as sin was introduced into the world by a woman succumbing to the
temptation of the Serpent during the creation, so the world would be saved by a woman born
without sin during the new creation. A woman who would appear as the Morning Star to announce the coming of the new dawn, when the Second Coming of Christ would usher in the creation of the new heaven and the new earth. The timing of the apparitions of St. Catherine Labouré, which took place on the Saturday before the first Sunday of Advent, reminds us that the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary takes place just before the Second Advent of Christ, when a woman
born free from the stain of original sin finally brings the events of the fall of mankind to its final conclusion, and paradise is finally restored.
The combination of deeply symbolic imagery shown on the Miraculous Medal leads to us to the understanding that St. Catherine Labouré's vision illustrates how the victory of the Woman Adorned with the Sun over the Serpent is won through the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, linking together the apparitions of Lourdes and Fatima through the eschatological significance of the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception. It may thus be of some relevance that the events leading up to the consecration of the world to the Immaculate Heart of Mary on October 13th this year, began on the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes - on 11 Feb, 2013, when Pope Benedict first announced his intention to abdicate the papacy. And the lightning that struck St. Peter's Basilica within hours of this announcement was not the only deeply symbolic act of nature that has taken place this year in connection with Our Lady of Lourdes. The flooding which inundated Lourdes on 18th June, 2013, has been similarly looked upon by many Catholics as some sort of heavenly sign or warning - especially given the dramatic nature of this event. Video footage of the flooding at Lourdes showed the statue of the Virgin Mary at the Grotto of Massabielle threatening to be swept away by the flood waters, which were highly reminiscent of the words of the Apocalypse:

The serpent poured water like a river out of his mouth after the woman, to sweep her away with a flood. But the earth came to the help of the woman, and the earth opened its mouth
and swallowed the river that the dragon had poured from his mouth. (Rev 12:15-16)

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