Skip to comments.Archbshp Sheen's Prophetic warning of 50 years ago: Mary and the Moslems; The Significance of Fatima
Posted on 11/02/2001 5:42:58 AM PST by Brian Kopp DPM
Mary and the Moslems
Moslemism is the only great post-Christian religion of the world. Because it had its origin in the seventh century under Mohammed, it was possible to unite, within it, some elements of Christianity and of Judaism, along with particular customs of Arabia. Moslemism takes the doctrine of the unity of God, His Majesty and His creative power, and uses it, in part, as a basis for the repudiation of Christ, the Son of God.
(The following was written in 1952 and reprinted in the October 2001 Mindszenty Report.)
The Power of Islam
by Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
Misunderstanding the notion of the Trinity, Mohammed made Christ a prophet, announcing Him just as to Christians Isaiah and John the Baptist are prophets announcing Christ.
The Christian European West barely escaped destruction at the hands of the Moslems. At one point they were stopped near Tours and at another point, later on in time, outside the gates of Vienna. The Church throughout northern Africa ws practically destroyed by Moslem power, and at the present hour, the Moslems are beginning to rise again. If Moslemism is a heresy, as Hilaire Belloc believes it to be, it is the only heresy that has never declined. Others have had a moment of vigor, then gone into doctrinal decay at the death of the leader, and finally evaporated in a vague social movement. Moslemism, on the contrary, has only had its first phase. There was never a time in which it declined, either in numbers, or in the devotion of its followers.
The missionary effort of the Church toward this group has been at least on the surface, a failure, for the Moslems are so far almost unconvertible. The reason is that for a follower of Mohammed to become a Christian is much like a Christian becoming a Jew. The Moslems believe that they have the final and definitive revelation of God to the world and that Christ was only a prophet announcing Mohammed, the last of Gods real prophets.
At the present time, the hatred of the Moslem countries against the West is becoming a hatred against Christianity itself. Although the statesmen have not yet taken it into account, there is still grave danger that the temporal power of Islam may return and, with it, the menace that it may shake off a West which has ceased to be Christian, and affirm itself as a great anti-Christian world power. Moslem writers say, When the locust swarms darken countries, they bear on their wings these Arabic words: We are Gods host, each of us has ninety-nine eggs, and if we had a hundred, we should lay waste the world, with all that is in it.
The problem is, how shall we prevent the hatching of the hundredth egg? It is our firm belief that the fears some entertain concerning the Moslems are not to be realized, but that Moslemism, instead, will eventually be converted to Christianity - and in a way that even some of our missionaries never suspect. It is our belief that this will happen not through the direct teachings of Christianity, but through a summoning of the Moslems to a veneration of the Mother of God. This is the line of argument:
Mary, Mother of God
The Koran, which is the Bible of the Moslems, has many passages concerning the Blessed Virgin. First of all, the Koran believes in her Immaculate Conception, and also, in her Virgin Birth. The third chapter of the Koran places the history of Marys family in a genealogy which goes back through Abraham, Noah, and Adam. When one compares the Korans description of the birth of Mary with the aprocryphal Gospel of the birth of Mary, one is tempted to believe tht Mohammed very much depended upon the latter. Both books describe the old age and the definite sterility of the mother of Mary. When, however, she conceives, the mother of Mary is made to say in the Koran: O Lord, I vow and I consecrate to you what is already within me. Accept it from me.
When Mary is born, the mother says: And I consecrate her with all of her posterity under thy protection, O Lord, against Satan! The Koran passes over Joseph in the life of Mary, but the Moslem tradition knows his name and has some familiarity with him. In this tradition, Joseph is made to speak to Mary, who is a virgin. As he inquired how she conceived Jesus without a father, Mary answered: Do you not know that God, when He created the wheat had no need of seed, and that God by His power made the trees grow without the help of rain? All that God had to do was to say, So be it, and it was done. The Koran has also verses on the Annunciation, Visitation, and Nativity. Angels are pictured as accompanying the Blessed Mother and saying: Oh Mary, God has chosen you and purified you, and elected you above all the women of the earth.
In the nineteenth chapter of the Koran there are 41 verses on Jesus and Mary. There is such a strong defense of the virginity of Mary here that the Koran, in the fourth book, attributed the condemnation of the Jews to their monstrous calumny against the Virgin Mary.
The Significance of Fatima
Mary, then, is for the Moslems the true Sayyida, or Lady. The only possible serious rival to her in their creed would be Fatima, the daughter of Mohammed himself. But after the death of Fatima, Mohammed wrote: Thou shalt be the most blessed of all the women in Paradise, after Mary. In a variant of the text, Fatima is made to say, I surpass all the women, except Mary.
This brings us to our second point: namely, why the Blessed Mother, in the 20th century, should have revealed herself in the significant little village of Fatima, so that to all future generations she would be known as Our Lady of Fatima. Since nothing ever happens out of Heaven except with a finesse of all details, I believe that the Blessed Virgin chose to be known as Our Lady of Fatima as a pledge and a sign of hope to the Moslem people, and as an assurance that they, who show her so much respect, will one day accept her divine Son too. Evidence to suport these views is found in the historical fact that the Moslems occupied Portugal for centuries. At the time when they were finally driven out, the last Moslem chief had a beautiful daughter by the name of Fatima. A Catholic boy fell in love with her, and for him she not only stayed behind when the Moslems left, but even embraced the Faith. The young husband was so much in love with her that he changed the name of the town where he live to Fatima. Thus, the very place where our Lady apeared in 1917 bears a historical connection to Fatima, the daughter of Mohammed.
The final evidence of the relationship of Fatima to the Moslems is the enthusiastic reception which the Moslems in Africa and India and elsewhere gave to the Pilgrim statue of Our Lady of Fatima, as mentioned earlier. Moslems attended the church services in honor of our Lady, they allowed religious processions and even prayers before their mosques; and in Mozambique the Moslems who were unconverted, began to be Christian as soon as the statue of Our Lady of Fatima was erected.
A Missionary Strategy
Missionaries in the future will, more and more, see that their apostolate among the Moslems will be successful in the measure that they preach Our Lady of Fatima. Mary is the advent of Christ, bringing Christ to the people before Christ Himself is born. In an apologetic endeavor, it is always best to start with that which people already accept. Because the Moslems have a devotion to Mary, our missionaries should be satisfied merely to expand and to develop that devotion, with the full realization that Our Blessed Lady will carry the Moslems the rest of the way to her divine Son. She is forever a traitor, in the sense that she will not accept any devotion for herself, but will always bring anyone who is devoted to her to her divine Son. As those who lose devotion to her lose belief in the divinity of Christ, so those who intensify devotion to her gradually acquire that belief.
Many of our great missionaries in Africa have already broken down the bitter hatred and prejudices of the Moslems against the Christians through their acts of charity, their schools and hospitals. It now remains to use another approach, namely, that of taking the 41st chapter of the Koran and showing them that it was taken out of the Gospel of Luke, that Mary could not be, even in their own eyes, the most blessed of all the women of Heaven if she had not also borne the Savior of the world. If Judith and Esther of the Old Testament were pre-figures of Mary, then it may very well be that Fatima herself was a post-figure of Mary! The Moslems should be prepared to acknowledge that, if Fatima must give way in honor to the Blessed Mother, it is because she is different from all the other mothers of the world and that without Christ she would be nothing.
(This article courtesy of The Mindzenty Report, published by the Cardinal Mindzenty Foundation.)
But at the same time, it is true that to Muslims, the distinctions between Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox are immaterial. In fact, the distinction between Christians and Jews is not particularly important to them. We must remember that one of the things that enabled Islam to conquer Spain and North Africa was the fact that Christians were fighting among themselves, sometimes over politics (Visigothic kingdoms in Spain) and sometimes over religion (Arian and other heresies).
As a pragmatic matter, we've got to put all this aside for awhile. The real enemy has revealed himself, and he's not any of us.
Let them just discuss among themselves.
There is nothing more hateful than an ex-Catholic.
Nothing dumber either.
A Missionary Strategy Missionaries in the future will, more and more, see that their apostolate among the Moslems will be successful in the measure that they preach Our Lady of Fatima. Mary is the advent of Christ, bringing Christ to the people before Christ Himself is born. In an apologetic endeavor, it is always best to start with that which people already accept. Because the Moslems have a devotion to Mary, our missionaries should be satisfied merely to expand and to develop that devotion, with the full realization that Our Blessed Lady will carry the Moslems the rest of the way to her divine Son. She is forever a traitor, in the sense that she will not accept any devotion for herself, but will always bring anyone who is devoted to her to her divine Son. As those who lose devotion to her lose belief in the divinity of Christ, so those who intensify devotion to her gradually acquire that belief.
The source of conversion should be Jesus Christ sink..We should preach Christ crucified..that isn't hateful it is scriptual..
He is. As Mary would say. She points to her Son and says "follow Him."
You convince no one, Mom. These doctrinal dust-ups don't do anything but make Christians look petty and foolish.
"My way is better than your way."
Or, even worse:
"My way is THE ONLY WAY."
The prayer for the Moslems is wonderful, but the reason Moslems flock to Fatima is because Jesus (to them Issa or Esau and God said "Esau I have hated") is supposed to come back at the end times and according t them, he's going to slay every Christian who doesn't bow down to Mohammed according to the Moslems. Why should we get excited about that? If Protestants followed a scripture that said that the Pope in the last days is going to kill all Catholics who don't convert to Protestantism, I wonder if you'd all be so excited if Protestants were lining up to visit the Vatican, or would you realize they might be lining up to see you killed (in this hypothetical scenario)? You know how they line up to see stonings and public executions in the Moslem world, well that's the concept here.
Catholics don't do this to them. They are free to have their threads about pre-destination, rapture, sola scriptura etc without even a single Catholic screaming about how they are wrong in what they believe. Catholics don't run around damning them to hell or calling their preachers anti-christs for their un-biblical ideas. Yet they always have to come into Catholic/Orthodox discussions to pick fights. Do they actually think they win anyone's hearts with their constant attacks?
So much hatred from people who call themselves christians...
John 14:6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Not my way Sink..His way!
The source of conversion should be Jesus Christ sink.Regardless of what is preached Jesus Christ is always the source of conversion. It is neither the messenger or how he chooses the message, but the Word Incarnate that brings us home.
We should preach Christ crucified..that isn't hateful it is scriptual..Why dont you go and try, see if you get any conversions. In any case, of course they will preach Christ crucified as well. That doesnt mean we should ignore common ground and use that to our advantage.
maybe he could read the February 15 2000 PLO Vatican agreement...the deals have allready been doneHave you compared the agreement with the PLO to the agreement with Israel? Can you tell me what it is in the agreement with the PLO that offends you, that is not also in the agreement with Israel? And yes, I do actually expect quotes, your own personal paraphrase wouldn't be all that effective.
The prayer for the Moslems is wonderful, but the reason Moslems flock to Fatima is because Jesus (to them Issa or Esau and God said "Esau I have hated") is supposed to come back at the end times and according t them, he's going to slay every Christian who doesn't bow down to Mohammed according to the Moslems.
I happen to believe in the rapture of the Church, the chaste bride of Christ, at the end times. The 'slay every Christian' may actually be the source of the great lie the world will believe concerning the sudden snatching away, that the Moslem's 'Esau has disposed of these who would not bow to Mohammed'. Apostasy always has some grain of plausibility in it, a times mostly plausible, but there is always that small bit of leaven that leveneth the whole.
Recently I found this (from Buddhist sites)
In the mid-sixteenth century, when Father Francis Xavier arrived in Japan with the hope of converting its people to Christianity, he was shocked upon encountering so many Buddhist monks involved in homoerotic relationships; indeed, he rapidly began referring to homoeroticism as the "Japanese vice." Needless to say, Father Xavier decided it was his duty to rid Japan of the "sin of sodomy." Xavier wrote, "We frequently tell the bonzes [i.e., Buddhist monks] that they should not commit such shameful sins; and everything that we tell them amuses them since they laugh about it and have no shame when they are reproached about so vile a sin." It appears, however, that Xavier and his fellow missionaries did not manage to convince a majority of Buddhists. It is reported that on one occasion, as he and a group of missionaries were walking through the streets of Yamaguchi, a gang of youths began yelling at them, "So you're the ones who forbid sodomy!" The youths then began throwing their shoes at them.
Now you know why they would take a male child from every family in Tibet and other Buddhist communities and give them to the monasteries.
Well now that I've angered the Catholics and the Buddhists, I have to go (I have to take my son to his homecoming), and I'm NOT anti-Catholic for anybody's information.
Last time I checked, faith in Christ was working pretty well.