Dear Friends of the Kolbe Center,
Glory to Jesus Christ!
Readers of this newsletter can testify to the fact that we almost never ask for donations and that for the last twenty-one years we have never turned down an invitation to give one of our seminars anywhere in the world without regard to our host’s ability to cover our travel expenses. From the day of our founding on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception in the Jubilee Year 2000, we have depended on the generosity of our benefactors through whom Divine Providence has always provided everything that we have needed to carry out His plans for this apostolate. Recently, a new friend of the Kolbe Center who is a professional financial advisor suggested that we remind our members that donations of stock can be given to our Center and that such donations are usually best made before the end of October. If any of you are interested in making such a donation, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will introduce you to our friend who will be happy to walk you through the process.
I would also like to inform you that one of the leading Catholic theistic evolutionists in the world, Fr. Nicanor Austriaco, O.P., has invited me to participate in a traditional disputatio with him on Saturday, November 13, at Providence College in Rhode Island where he teaches. The disputatio differs from a debate in that both parties are required to set forth and defend the other party’s position as fairly as possible before offering a critique of that position. The thesis that both parties will address is: “Is it reasonable for a Catholic to accept an evolutionary account of Creation?” I would ask you to pray that the Holy Ghost and Our Lady will help us to prepare for this disputatio so that we can speak the truth in charity, successfully defend the true Catholic doctrine of creation, expose the fatal flaws in the molecules-to-man evolution hypothesis and give glory to God for what He actually did in the work of Creation.
A recurring theme of this newsletter is the way that God’s supernatural divine action in the lives of His saints confirms the historical truth of His supernatural divine work in creation. Just a few days ago, on Sunday, October 24, the Church would normally have celebrated the feast of St. Anthony Claret whose wonder-working activities as priest and Bishop bore witness to the truth of God’s Genesis revelation in various ways. Nowadays it is commonplace to hear Catholic intellectuals insist that it gives God more glory to work through secondary causes to achieve His purposes than to achieve them directly and that it is more wonderful to produce a human body through the action of innumerable secondary causes over hundreds of millions of years than to produce one directly at the beginning of time. With the same kind of reasoning these learned Catholics dismiss the special creation of all of the different kinds of plants and animals in favor of an evolutionary development of all of the different kinds of living things from one or a few one-celled ancestors.
It is all the more interesting, therefore, to note that several years before the publication of the Communist Manifesto in 1848, when the number of communists in the whole world was negligible, with his gift of prophecy St. Anthony warned of the horrendous evils that would be unleashed by this movement. As we take pains to demonstrate in our seminars, the principal “error of Russia” that took hold in that nation after the Bolshevik Revolution was not communism but evolutionism which made confident atheist-materialists of the principal leaders of the communist revolution, and which denied the special creation of all things by God. Thus, the notion that God had created the different kinds of plants and animals in the Hexameron came to be regarded as a myth, replaced by the new “scientific” understanding that all of the different kinds of creatures came into existence from one or a few one-celled organisms over hundreds of millions of years of struggle for existence.
The life of St. Anthony Mary Claret was full of wonders that gave the lie to the widespread naturalism of his day, but there is one miracle in particular that did so in a particularly humorous and remarkable way. It occurred when St. Anthony was devoting himself to writing and preaching missions in Spain, often walking long distances to accomplish his work. On one occasion which he himself related in his autobiography he struck up a conversation with a poor man on the road. The man was carrying a large sack full of tobacco to sell in the market, but the fellow was downcast at the sight of customs agents in the road ahead who would ask him for a license to sell tobacco—a license that he did not possess. As one of the saint’s biographers described the situation:
Buying the tobacco had taken every cent [the poor man possessed] and were he to lose it, his family faced ruin!
Padre Anthony’s compassion aroused at the thought of the needy household, he insisted upon carrying the sack himself. “They won’t say anything to me,” he said.
“No, but they won’t believe the tobacco is yours, and how will this help me?” the distracted man complained. However, he relinquished his load to the cheerful priest.
“What have you there?” came the peremptory demand as the pair approached the inspectors.
“French peas,” replied dauntless Padre Anthony, as he unconcernedly eased the load off his back for examination.
His companion’s agonized state of mind while “the law” stepped up to “discover all” may well be imagined. But, as one fascinated by his certain doom, he too drew close and peered into the now open pack. Happily, no one was observing him, so that the transition from paralyzing fright to grateful joy reflected in the poor chap’s eyes passed unnoticed. In an instant he had been transported from terror into the high, free air of hope! For, as affirmed by this marvelous Padre Claret, his sack actually did contain only the permissible peas!
The inspection concluded, they continued on and soon entered the relieved man’s home village. There he received his property from the hands of his benefactor, and from his lips a few parting words of good counsel. He who had escaped the penalty for his infraction by a miracle was ashamed of the vagrant wish that such a marvel might have netted something more valuable than a store of peas. He hastened to return thanks that they would at least provide a few meals for his youngsters. What then was his astonishment when he reached his cottage, opened the pack and found it brimming over with the dry, sweet-smelling tobacco for which he had risked so much!
Consider well how much meaning Our Lord packed into this miracle! A sack of tobacco plants was supernaturally changed into a sack of French peas, the physical reality of which was attested to by Fr. Anthony, his poor companion and the customs agents. But this sack of French peas was then supernaturally transformed back into a sack full of tobacco, with all the valuable accidents that had prompted the poor man to risk all to take it to market without a license! In the face of such a miracle, who would be so hardhearted and faithless as to withhold his belief from the sacred history of Genesis when Moses tells us that God willed into existence the different kinds of plants on the third day of creation?
As the children of the Enlightenment set the stage for Darwin to deny the special creation of all things by insisting that “the present is the key to the past,” God’s supernatural action in answer to the prayers of his saints gave the lie to their blasphemies—as it continues to do to this very day, through the Sacraments and through the prayers of the members of the Mystical Body of Christ where there is living Faith. As reported in an article on St. Anthony at Catholic.org:
On September 3, 1859, Padre Claret claimed he had heard Jesus tell him that there were three great evils that were descending upon mankind: the first was a series of enormous, horrifying wars; the second, the four powerful demons of pleasure, love of money, false reasoning and a will separated from God. Finally, Jesus told Claret that the third chastisement would be brought about by Communism, an unknown, fledgling movement that only had hundreds of followers at the time. Two years after the September 3 warning, during benediction of the Blessed Sacrament in August 1861, Claret again said that he was warned interiorly by Jesus that Communism was to be the great foe of humanity. The remedy, Jesus told him, would include devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and the Holy Rosary.
As a kind of global communism spreads its tentacles over the whole world, let us intensify our devotion to the Blessed Sacrament and to the Holy Rosary, and let us invoke the prayers of St. Anthony Mary Claret, for the hastening of the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the consecration and conversion of Russia, and the Eucharistic reign of Christ the King throughout the world.
Yours in Christ through the Immaculata in union with St. Joseph,