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March 5, 2021 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

Editor’s Note: Are you interested in finding some good Lenten reading? Why not choose one or more of our books? The books available are Catholic Replies and Catholic Replies 2, All Generations Will Call Me Blessed, Who Do You Say That I Am?, Catholicism & Reason (Apologetics), Catholicism & Scripture (Salvation History), Catholicism & Society (Marriage and Family), Catholicism & Ethics (Medical/Moral Issues), and Catholicism & Life (Commandments and Sacraments).
While they usually range in price from $10.95 to $17.95, you can purchase them at a special Lenten price of $5 each, plus $10 shipping for up to five books and $15 for more than five books. All orders must be paid by check. You can learn more about these books by visiting our website at www.crpublications.com. Don’t order from the website, however, since it automatically charges full price.

Q. In the song Mary, Did You Know?, the lyrics ask if Mary knew about many of the things that would happen in the life of Jesus. They ask if she knew that “your baby Boy has come to make you new? This Child that you delivered will soon deliver you.” This implies that Mary needed to be delivered from sin. Is this compatible with Catholic teaching? — B.N., via e-mail.
A. Michelle Arnold of Catholic Answers has answered this question in the affirmative. Here is what she said:
“The song Mary, Did You Know? can be understood in an orthodox manner. Catholics believe that Mary did indeed need to be delivered from sin. She was delivered from ever having any stain of sin on her soul from the very moment of her conception. That is the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. That deliverance was done in anticipation of her Son’s sacrificial death on Calvary.
“If we think of Mary at the moment in history when she was cradling the Child Jesus, which is the moment at which the song describes her, then she had already been immaculately conceived, but the sacrificial death that her deliverance anticipated was still in the future at that point in time. It was the sacrificial death that would fully accomplish her deliverance and the deliverance of all mankind. So it is technically correct from a historical perspective for the lyrics to say ‘soon deliver you’.”

Q. What do you know about the Blessed Virgin appearing to a woman in the Netherlands in the 1950s and asking to be addressed as “The Lady of All Nations”? Was this a legitimate apparition? – M.C., via e-mail.
A. No, it was not, according to a Catholic News Service article that appeared in the January 30th issue of the National Catholic Register. The woman, whose name was Ida Peerdeman, claimed that the Blessed Mother appeared to her 56 times between 1945 and 1959 and gave her numerous messages and prophecies. She said that Mary wanted to be called “The Lady of All Nations,” and a prayer card asked Jesus to “let the Holy Spirit live in the hearts of all nations, that they may be preserved from degeneration, disaster, and war. May the Lady of All Nations, who was once Mary, be our advocate. Amen.”
In 1956, the local bishop of Haarlem, Johannes Huibers, declared after an investigation that he had “found no evidence of the supernatural nature of the apparitions.” This verdict was confirmed in 1974 by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF).
However, in 2002, Bishop Joseph Maria Punt of Haarlem said that the alleged apparitions were authentic, but the CDF expressed “concern regarding one particular aspect of that devotion whereby official prayers invoke the Blessed Virgin as Lady of All Nations ‘who was once Mary’.” The congregation told the apostolic nuncio of the Netherlands that “Marian devotion must be nourished and developed in accordance with the indications given by the Holy Father [Pope St. John Paul II] in Redemptoris Mater and Rosarium Virginis Mariae and not according to private apparitions, nor according to a ‘new’ name of Mary as ‘Lady of All Nations who was once Mary’.”
On December 30, 2020, Bishop Johannes Hendricks of Haarlem-Amsterdam said that while “the use of the title Lady of All Nations is in itself theologically acceptable…the recognition of this title cannot be understood — even implicitly — as the recognition of the supernaturality of some phenomena from which it seems to have come.” He said that “in this sense, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith reaffirms the validity of the negative judgment on the supernaturality of the alleged ‘apparitions and revelations’ to Ms. Ida Peerdeman approved by St. Paul VI on April 5, 1974 and published on May 25, 1974.”
Bishop Hendricks said that “this judgment implies that everybody is urged to cease any propagation concerning the alleged apparitions and revelations of the Lady of All Nations. Therefore, the use of the images and prayer cannot in any way be considered a recognition — not even implicitly — of the supernaturality of the events in question….Devotion to Mary as the Lady and Mother of All Nations is good and valuable. It must, however, remain separate from the messages and the apparitions. These are not approved by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. That is the core of the clarification which has come about in accordance with the Congregation following the recent appearance of various national and international reports concerning the veneration.”

Q. Do you think that Triumph Communications is a reputable publishing company? And what about books by Malachi Martin? Should we read them or avoid them? — Name Withheld, Washington State.
A. According to its web site, “the mission of Triumph Communications is to defend and promote the Christian traditions. Triumph Communications is working to recover and restore the traditions that make us strong, that make this life a joy as well as a sacrifice, and that lead our souls to their eternal destiny.” Located in Saskatchewan, Canada, Triumph makes available books, articles, videos, and CD recordings that promote the Traditional Latin Mass, oppose the spread of the heresy of Modernism in the Church, and sometimes offer an apocalyptic view of events and personalities in the Church since the end of Vatican II in 1965.
We read a couple of the late Fr. Malachi Martin’s books some years ago and found them interesting, especially with regard to his apparent knowledge of the inner workings of the Vatican, but we were not convinced of the scenario he presented and were not motivated to read his other books.

Q. Can you please send me a list of companies that support Planned Parenthood and that I should boycott? Also, please send a list of Catholic-recommended companies and products that are pro-life. – R.D., via e-mail.
A. A few issues back, we listed some companies that donate money directly or indirectly to Planned Parenthood, including Nike, Heinz, Energizer, Clorox, Facebook, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, CVS, Walmart, Liberty Mutual, Aetna, Pepsi, ExxonMobil, and there are hundreds of others. Michael Hichborn of the Lepanto Institute, who focuses mainly on Catholic agencies who give money to morally tainted groups, is one source of information (www.lepantoin.org).
The most comprehensive “Boycott List” of companies that donate to PP can be obtained from Life Decisions International, P.O. Box 439, Front Royal, VA 22630 (fightPP@activist.com).
On the Planned Parenthood website, by the way, there is a call for defunding the police (and you thought they were just about killing babies!). Here is what it says:
“As the country continues a long-overdue reckoning with systemic racism and the murders of Black people at the hands of police, Planned Parenthood stood alongside partners leading the fight for racial justice by supporting the call to #DefundThePolice and invest in community based solutions, education, and health care instead of militarizing police forces.”
For a lengthy list of pro-life groups and companies, see the website www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/prolife-organizations-9557.

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Catechism

Today . . .

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Catholic Replies

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