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Life is tough. Nuns are tougher.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Pay Attention This Time

We have lots of new readers these days! Welcome to our little convent of three and sometimes four and then three again. Some new folks have asked how to leave a question. Just ask in the comments section. Be sure and check back there too, because sometimes other readers beat me to the answer. And save me a lot of time!

I was really surprised today to find a new question on an entry from long ago, particularly since the entry was all about this subject:

Hi Sister, I'm searching to find the Matrix Medal. Do you know where I can buy them? I absolutely love the literature on this amazing sacramental and my family is need of much spiritual help right now. My brother has been diagnosed with a brain tumor and is scheduled in Houston, TX to have the surgery on the 27th. My mom found this sacramental and feels like he truly needs to have it in his possession.

I can tell you where to get the medal.

But...did you read at all what I wrote about this subject? This time, don't plug up your ears and hum.

Let's start with that.

But you don't have to take my word for it. You can have a look at this visionary in her stigmata gown. She's posted it online.

Remember Padre Pio? He always wore gloves. St. Rita had to be locked in a room all by herself from her stigmata wound.

Let me digress a moment and explain that when you actually have the stigmata, they are not symbolic wounds. They are actual wounds. Big bleeding holes. They hurt, they bleed and they make you very, very sick. Imagine if you took a big old railroad tie and pounded it through your hand or your foot, or both hands or both feet and then pulled it back out and walked around like that and the wounds never closed up. That's how ill you'd feel with the stigmata. The reason St. Rita had to be locked away in a room all by herself was because her stigmata wound festered and smelled so terrible, no one could stand to be around her. (Until she died, then her room smelled of roses. I think I read somewhere that it still does and they don't even use a Glade plug in or anything.)

I'm sorry to sound to cynical. It smells fishy. I'm not alone.

As I've said, the Church has not approved this apparition.

Every time Mary appears to someone, she brings something new. A new devotion and a prayer, a revelation, a medal, a healing spring.

So here comes this lady with a new devotion and a prayer and some healing water (that you can buy in the gift shop of her chapel), a medal and some revelations and hey, you don't believe me yet? How about some stigmata? That always works.

I know I must sound like that nun in "The Song of Bernadette" who was jealous of the fact that Bernadette was just a dumb bunny little girl who couldn't remember her catechism and here was this nun who had devoted her life to Christ and who does Mary visit?

Maybe someday I'll find myself carrying Christina Gallagher around in my arms the way that woman ended up carrying Bernadette (but only in the movie; in real life that woman never stopped hating Bernadette it would seem).

I somehow doubt it.

I can tell you where to get the medal. I don't want to upset your mother, who has so much to deal with at present.

You can get one for $2 here:
St. Andrew's Bookstore

I feel terrible telling you that. I don't want to be part of spreading this 'devotion'.

We'll be praying for you all and so will all my readers, because that's what they do. Here in our little convent of three, we'll be turning to Our Lady of Perpetual Help.

At least, it's still the same Mary.


NCSue said...

Rock on, Sister.

Methinks that people who put their stigmata on display are more interested in glorifying self than in glorifying God. Smells fishy to me, too.

Anonymous said...

Hi, sister! Please excuse my english - I'm from Brazil and we speak portuguese down here. I have a question about sin: We can sin through action, omission, words and thoughts. What about dreams? If, for example, I dream about killing my boss, do I have to go to confession the next day?
Thanks in advance,

JP said...

Hi Larissa

This question has come up on EWTN question and answer shows.

They always say that you are not guilty of "sins" that happen only in your dreams.

Any other thoughts?

Anonymous said...

Thanks, JP!

Sr. Teresa said...

Must say..love the way you answered the question about the Matrix medal. I had never heard of it but will most certainly be praying for those involved and the wisdom the Church needs to handle these situations! Your blog is awesome and your humor is exactly like mine...it is actually very Canadian...have you ever been?

Unknown said...

Did Therese Neuman's stigmata show?

JFS in IL said...

Sister, my sister-in-law, a Dominican Sister down in Nashville, told us at our last visit that she and her Sisters are just that - Sisters, not nuns. I thought the terms were synonyms. What is the different? She lives in the Mother House convent, wears a full habit, and works at a local college.

Regina said...

A very interesting post! Never heard of the Matrix medal.
And thanks for your commentary on this.

Arkanabar T'verrick Ilarsadin said...

nuns (and monks) are cloistered. They do not leave the community under any circumstances except under obedience. Their ministry is prayer and silence. Sisters and friars have ministries and apostolates out in the world. They live in their communities, but they deal with the world.

Silver Parnell said...

Dear Sister ~

A question completely off topic, if you don't mind, but i am new to blogs and have trouble finding my way around. i hope i left the right bread crumbs to find my way back to where i started and BACK to where i might get my answer.

My question has a "backstory" as they say in Hollywood...

I am descended from several saints, my favorite being St. Margaret of Scotland (who was actually an English princess who married the Scottish king Malcolm, as you know.) In fact, I am descended from 3 of her 8 children, their descendants having married one another in typical royal fashion. One couldn't marry a COMMONER, and there weren't that many royals in the vicinity, so you married your cousin. This happened so often, I am a cousin to myself several times over...and REALLY related to St. Margaret a bunch of times!

I was not raised Catholic however. In fact, I was raised by wolves. But I was always fascinated with the Catholic church, even as a child. There is no explanation for this, except for the fact that my mother hated Catholics, and since she was an awful mother, perhaps I was just REBELLING.

FINALLY, the question, if you have not already gone to sleep:

I was not asking for Saint Margaret of Scotland's intercession while I was a child, and I wasn't a Catholic (or even a Christian!) until recently and I didn't even KNOW she was related to me until my 40's...but do you think that, as her descendant, she was praying for me and that this could account for some of my attraction to the Catholic church?

Anonymous said...

Thank you! Sister, for your clarifying comments and fidelity to the faith regarding the 'come and go', self-proclaimed visionaries, prophets and such. I wonder if you would/could comment on another such woman who is very popular in some circles of the Catholic lay community these days: i.e. Anne, Lay Apostle. Thank you for any light you care to shed on this woman. God be with you, dear Sister! You are in my prayers. Maggie

Unknown said...

Hi, Sister Mary Martha!

I'm so happy to have found you and your witty blog. I need help regarding that pesky matrix medal and Christina stinkin' Gallagher. My husband is from Ireland and has family there who have been thoroughly duped by this false prophet. They have been regularly driving to Achill to attend the House of Prayer (about a 300 mile round trip) and refuse to believe the mounding evidence against Gallagher and her claims. They believe that all who dismiss her are actually spreading lies. They sent us a few matrix medals and I don't know what to do with them. Is it okay to throw them away? And what is your advice as to how to get our loved ones away from the House of Prayer without starting WWIII within this very sensitive family? I'm very worried about their continued involvement.
Thank you for your help!

Anonymous said...

@ Larissa, this is subject to my own opinion: Dream states of mind are closer to 'the heart of the onion' (please excuse the analogy but psychology is not an explicit science). Actions within a dream-scape are not as ‘conditioned’ by the super ego and are actually truer to ones 'pure will' or 'unrefined ego'. The purest of wills, such as Christ's, would not need to restrict itself, for it would rarely if ever feel tempted in the first place (unless perishing in a desert). Synthesizing or acting the behaviour of a more enlightened being, which is what you or I may do by not killing our bosses in reality, is too convoluted by outer 'onion' layers - suffice to say I am of the opinion that you truly want to and "TRULY", beyond the consequences of reality, would kill him. I have vivid dreams where I am presented with similar temptations and I fail in denying them. I usually feel terribly ashamed the following day knowing that I had a choice in the dream and failed to exhibit a purity of will. Reflection and meditation are key to training your ego towards purity. Telling yourself it couldn't be helped because it was a dream will only grant you an immediate reassurance and you're ultimately building up unresolved emotional strain.
Again I am in no degree qualified to offer psychological advice, or even observation, and the above information is entirely conjecture otherwise granted validity from a doctor of psychology (who, again is naught but a poet).

Anonymous said...

@Jlynn343: The imagery contained in the Matrix Medallion is in no way the invention or original mediation of Christina Gallagher. It is a composite of pre-existing Catholic imagery which Ms. Gallagher synthesized. The face of a Miraculous Medallion (or the Immaculate Conception) is considered a Matrix of Sacred imagery, which (could) refer to the sublime and inconceivable nature of the immediate presented world and Gods sublime intermediation/mediation of it (eg. inconceivable virgin birth). The Bleeding Hearts on the second face refers to the "Sacred Heart" of Jesus Christ and "The Immaculate heart" of The Holy Mother Mary; which are also incorporated on the second face of the pre-established Miraculous Medallion.
I would personally and strongly advise against neglecting any such tokens of faith simply on the grounds of their recent social history. Again Ms. Gallagher does not own or did not derive their image, nor do I believe she understands them proper (in this sense her synthesis may bear authenticity, for it’s beyond her own understanding. The kneeling woman of The Matrix is not The Holy Mother Mary (as Gallagher has stated) for there is no Immaculate Halo about her head. I have a similar pictorial token bearing a woman dressed in a red skirt; matching the detail and pose of the woman on the Matrix Medallion, who is knelt before Mary dressed in white and cyan and veiled with an halo of stars and light, Mary is also set on a higher ground than the repenting figure just as the Crucifix in The Matrix). Furthermore she is not in any position or capacity to comprehend or determine, as she so claims, the nature and Divine Will of such a sublime matrix, for as I am to believe she is nearing terrestrial justice for her actions. In this sense you could envisage her as the very sinner knelt before the Crucifix of “her” medallion; an ironic and very matrix orientated perspective. I hope these observations help disassociate Ms. Gallagher from such long and pre-existing sacred imagery.
As for your husband and family may I offer you this advice? - The wisest humans the grace this world have been so because they truly appreciate their position of ultimate unknowingness (cf. Socrates/ The Fool (XXII) of The Major Arcana). I do believe in a greater than knowing (as we know knowing) consciousness, and if there is anything human beings ought be to granted mercy for it's their knowing no better. Our faith is our own, it's a personal relationship developed by oneself, and oughtn’t be designed through the authority of others (while direction and council is often helpful, it can be a personal trespass). I'm Irish and I can tell you Achill is a truly inspiring and awesome place, a 300 hundred mile pilgrimage there sounds perfectly respectful and could only help deepen ones faith.
Honestly know little of Ms. Gallagher, should she exhibit pride/vanity/gluttony through her faith then that's between her and her maker. If you are worried about your family's association to this place of objective worship then simply pray on behalf of their possible misunderstanding, then in following pray for your own; but again I'm sure any greater consciousness would be aware that their will and intentions in doing so are good natured, so long as they're not kneeling before her as a false idol. If they give her their life savings in the name (or guise) of a selfless greater cause then they're objectively following closely to the path of Christ. Should she keep this money for her own short lived material desires then she will surely pay for her inequity in equal and opposite measure, and likewise they rewarded in measure.
Thanks for your time reading and I hope this somehow helps. J