Why is Making Reparation so Essential
The True Horror of Liturgical Abuse
There is no doubt that one of the most offensive actions one can commit against God is liturgical abuse. Indeed, we see even in the old testament that when the sons of Core and their followers offered incense in a manner contrary to that prescribed by God for His worship they suffered the following fate:
The earth broke asunder under their feet: And opening her mouth, devoured them with their tents and all their substance. And they went down alive into hell the ground closing upon them, and they perished from among the people. But all Israel, that was standing round about, fled at the cry of them that were perishing: saying: Lest perhaps the earth swallow us up also. And a fire coming out from the Lord, destroyed the two hundred and fifty men that offered the incense. (Numbers 16:31-35)
And when our Lord found liturgical abuse happening right before His own eyes as He walked upon the earth He did not hesitate but took immediate action:
And the pasch of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And he found in the temple them that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting. And when he had made, as it were, a scourge of little cords, he drove them all out of the temple, the sheep also and the oxen, and the money of the changers he poured out, and the tables he overthrew. And to them that sold doves he said: Take these things hence, and make not the house of my Father a house of traffic. And his disciples remembered, that it was written: The zeal of thy house hath eaten me up. (John 2:13-17)
And yet we may still not understand just how horrible this sin really is. I know I didn’t until I read the most shocking thing I think I might ever read in my life in The Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is based upon the visions of Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich and transcribed by a Redemptorist Priest…
They took a child of one of the purest and most devout mothers amongst the followers of their religion, and she esteemed herself very fortunate to offer up her child in this way. The child was flayed and strewn with flour to absorb the blood. They ate this blood-soaked flour as a holy repast, and continued strewing the flour and eating until there was no blood left in the child’s body. Finally the child’s flesh was cut up into small pieces, which were distributed among them and eaten. I saw them performing this gruesome ceremony with the greatest simplicity and devoutness, and I was told that they had adopted this dreadful practice as a result of misunderstanding and distorting certain prophetic and symbolical indications which they had received regarding the Holy Eucharist. I saw that this terrible sacrifice was carried on in Chaldea, in the country of Mensor, one of the three holy kings, until he put an end to its horrors on receiving enlightenment in a vision from heaven on the day of Mary’s conception. I saw him on a high wooden pyramidal edifice, engaged in studying the stars, as his people had done for centuries in accordance with their ancient traditions. I saw King Mensor lying in an ecstasy as he contemplated the stars; his limbs were rigid and he had lost consciousness. His companions came to him and brought him back to himself, but at first he seemed not to know them at all. He had seen the picture in the star with the Virgin, the scales, the ear of corn, and the cluster of grapes, and had received an inner admonition, after which that cruel ceremony was abolished.
After seeing at night in my sleep the fearful picture of the murdered child on my right hand, I turned over in horror in my bed, but saw it again on my left hand. I begged God most earnestly to free me from this dreadful sight. I woke up and heard the clock strike. My heavenly Bridegroom said to me, pointing round Him as He spoke: ‘See far more evil that befalls Me every day at the hands of many throughout the whole world.’ And as I looked about me into the distance, many things came before my soul which were indeed still more dreadful than that sacrifice of children; for I saw Jesus Himself cruelly sacrificed on the Altar by unworthy and sinful celebrations of the Holy Mysteries. I saw how the blessed Host lay on the altar before unworthy degenerate priests like a living Child Jesus, whom they cut and terribly mutilated with the paten. Their sacrifice, though an efficacious celebration of the Holy Mysteries, appeared like a cruel murder. (Life of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Ch. 2:14-15)
And let us consider another equally disturbing account give by Saint Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri, Bishop and Doctor of the Church, in his great work Dignities and Duties of the Priest…
Oh ! what horror must God and his angels feel at the sight of a sacrilegious Mass! This horror the Lord made known in the following manner, in the year 1688, to his servant Sister Mary Crucified, of Palma, in Sicily. At first she heard a doleful trumpet, which uttered, in a tone of thunder, audible over the entire earth, the following words: Ultio, poena, dolor (vengeance, punishment, pain). She then saw several sacrilegious ecclesiastics singing psalms with discordant voices, and in a confused and irregular manner. She next saw one of them rise up to go to the altar and say Mass. While he was putting on the sacred vestments, the church was covered with darkness and mourning. He approaches the altar, and, in saying the Introibo ad altare Dei, the trumpet sounds again and repeats, Ultio, poena, dolor. In an instant the altar appeared to be surrounded by flames of fire, which denoted the just fury of the Lord against the unworthy celebrant; and at the same time a great multitude of angels were seen with swords in their hands as if to execute vengeance on him for the sacrilegious Mass which he was going to offer. When the monster came near the consecration, a crowd of vipers sprung from the midst of the flames to drive him away from the altar; these vipers represented his fears and stings of conscience. But they were all useless; the impious wretch preferred his own reputation to all these stings of remorse. Finally he pronounced the words of consecration; and instantly the servant of God felt a universal earthquake, which caused heaven, earth, and hell to tremble. She saw angels around the altar bathed in tears; but the divine mother wept still more bitterly at the death of her innocent son, and at the loss of a sinful child. After a vision so tremendous and dismal, the servant of God was so overpowered with fear and sorrow that she could do nothing but weep. The author of her life remarks that it was in the same year the earthquake happened which produced such havoc in the city of Naples and in the surrounding country. Hence we may infer that this earthquake was a punishment for the sacrilegious Mass at which Sister Mary was present.
Consider then how terrible it is for a Priest to offer Holy Mass in the state of mortal sin, but how much more then would he outrage God if in the course of offering Holy Mass he would actually commit a mortal sin by deliberately perpetrating some type of Liturgical Abuse?!
At another point in the same work speaking about the horrors of a sacrilegious Mass being offered Alphonsus says:
St. Bernardine of Sienna teaches that such priests are even worse than Judas; because Judas betrayed the Saviour to the Jews, but they deliver him up to devils by receiving him into their sacrilegious breasts, which are ruled by devils.
And yet despite the indescribable evil of the sin of liturgical abuse it is not only common, but it has been almost institutionalized in many places. God will require a price to be paid for these evils and if we do nothing there will be a terrible chastisement. Let us then pray each day in reparation for these sins and for the conversion of those responsible.
Litany of Reparation
Lord, have mercy on us. Lord, have mercy on us
Christ, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.
Lord, have mercy on us. Lord, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us. Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, offered for the salvation of sinners, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, annihilated on the altar for us and by us, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, despised by lukewarm Christians, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, mark of contradiction, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, delivered over to unbelievers and heretics, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, insulted by blasphemers, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, Bread of angels, given to animals, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, flung into the mud and trampled underfoot, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, dishonored by unfaithful priests, Have mercy on us.
Sacred Host, forgotten and abandoned in Thy churches, Have mercy on us.
Be merciful unto us, Pardon us, O Lord.
Be merciful unto us, Hear us, O Lord.
For the outrageous contempt of this most wonderful Sacrament, We offer Thee our reparation.
For Thine extreme humiliation in Thine admirable Sacrament, We offer Thee our reparation.
For all unworthy Communions, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the irreverences of wicked Christians, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the profanation of Thy sanctuaries, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the holy ciboriums dishonored and carried away by force, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the continual blasphemies of impious men, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the obduracy and treachery of heretics, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the unworthy conversations carried on in Thy holy temples, We offer Thee our reparation.
For the profaners of Thy churches which they have desecrated by their sacrileges, We offer Thee our reparation.
That it may please Thee to increase in all Christians the reverence due to this adorable Mystery, we beseech Thee, hear us.
That it may please Thee to manifest the Sacrament of Thy Love to heretics, we beseech Thee, hear us.
That it may please Thee to grant us the grace to atone for their hatred by our burning love for Thee, we beseech Thee, hear us.
That it may please Thee that the insults of those who outrage Thee may rather be directed against ourselves, we beseech Thee, hear us.
That it may please Thee graciously to receive this our humble reparation, we beseech Thee, hear us.
That it may please Thee to make our adoration acceptable to Thee, we beseech Thee, hear us.
Pure Host, hear our prayer.
Holy Host, hear our prayer.
Immaculate Host, hear our prayer.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.
See, O Lord, our affliction,
And give glory to Thy Holy Name.
Let us pray.
O Lord Jesus Christ, Who dost deign to remain with us in Thy wonderful Sacrament unto the end of the world, in order to give eternal glory to Thy Father, by the perpetual oblation of Thy Passion, and to give to us the Bread of life everlasting: Grant us, we beseech Thee, the grace to mourn, with a heart full of sorrow, over the injuries which Thou hast received in this adorable Mystery, and over the many sacrileges which are committed by the impious and by heretics, and even alas, by weak, ignorant, and wicked Catholics. Inflame us with an ardent zeal to repair all the ignominies to which, in Thine infinite mercy, Thou hast preferred to expose Thyself rather than deprive us of Thy Presence on our altars, Who with God the Father and the Holy Spirit livest and reignest one God, world without end. Amen.