VIII. SPIRIT OF THE CHURCH
3. Loss of the sense of the blessing
St. Padre Pio: I will tell you now about what follows, about the blessing of the priest. People in the church sometimes leave before the blessing; sometimes they do not wait for it at all because they do not desire it. They do not understand what it gives them and why it is provided. You see, Christ, when departing from the earth, blessed it, blessed the apostles, and gave them His peace. This peace, which He left, is the beginning of Heaven. It leaves in the soul a longing for the immaculate, eternal peace.
The peace in God that we achieve on earth is imperfect, because it largely depends on ourselves; but even if we pray for peace during struggle, we will receive it. This concerns the peace of the soul in which one dwells in union with Christ. This peace is stronger than the attacks of the evil spirit, and it can be kept deep within the soul, even when everything around is full of unrest. The earth is not at peace. The more peace there is within us, the more Satan seems to kill this peace. However, the Holy Spirit multiplies this grace within us when we really need it. Christians should not be afraid of any events, because they are embraced by the grace of Christ. This grace, which protects them, strengthens them and makes them independent from the world, flows out from the blessing. Through the sign of the cross that the priest makes over the faithful, the Holy Spirit provides graces at the measure of the opening of the soul to that grace; and depending on the Will of God, it flows in a different way on different souls.
When departing, Jesus blessed the apostles, so they may carry His peace to their homes. This peace is abiding in Him. Only such a peace is durable. The blessing provides us with the grace of the presence of Christ, who acts in this blessing through the power of the Holy Spirit. Without this blessing, we would not be able to do anything. Each blessing that we take away after the Holy Mass, comes out form Heaven into the world and acts, acts by transforming and shaping the world in the image of God.
The road of every blessing is far-reaching in its consequences. It sometimes reaches very far and brings goodness in places where it can not to be expected at all. Thus, always take the blessing and ask for it. The blessing is a direct pull of graces from Heaven for our needs, our miseries and our anxieties. It is the peace of God, which by descending, transforms the world.
I want you to further pass down the blessings that you receive from priests. Not only they can bless. In the Name of God, the Spirit gives Himself to those who believe, and He only seeks souls thirsty for His graces. The blessing surrounds those who ask for it and receive it with love. I bless you daughter. Amen.
4. The blessing of the priest
Holy Spirit: The priest blesses with the authority of God. On behalf of God. The blessing of the priest is the blessing of Christ. If the priest blesses the union of two people, it becomes a marriage because the power of the priest is the power of God. Whatever the priest binds on Earth is bound in Heaven. The blessing of the priest has an eternal power and value; it commits reality to yield to the will of God.
The blessing of lay people draws only from the blessing of the priest, because the blessing of the priest comes directly from God, and the blessing of lay people is its derivative. The graces flowing from the cross are granted to mankind through the mediation of priests. The cross is a force and an exorcism in itself, so making it with faith always brings its blessing upon the world, upon specific persons or matters. This is why parents should bless children, spouses should bless each other. You should bless people, food, animals, rooms, sick places in the body. You do not use directly the power of Christ through this, but you draw from the redemptive grace of the cross of Christ.
The difference in the blessing of a priest and a layman is such as the difference between Christ and His cross. In the first case, Christ Himself blesses, and in the second the blessing flows from the cross upon the power of the redemptive sacrifice of Christ, which sanctified the cross.
6. Thy Kingdom come
God the Father: The prayer “Our Father” is the plenitude of adoration and union of the soul with Me. In its individual requests, man unites his will with Mine and in this way gives Me glory. In its first request, it addresses Me with the name “Father”, which gives Me joy because it is a recognition of My nature and the nature of My love for man. It is also a profession of faith and a recognition of its truths in oneself. Thanks to these truths, man realizes what God has done for him, filiating man in his Son – Jesus.
Today, we will pay attention to the second request, in which you ask Me with the words: “Thy Kingdom come”. Do you understand what you desire, by asking Me for this? What do you expect after the fulfillment of this request? Wishing for My Kingdom, you wish for Me as a King. My Kingdom is not a land deprived of suffering, as some imagine themselves My governance. My Kingdom is something much greater. My Kingdom is a reality in which I reign over everything. My Kingdom is contained in the human soul, but it also encompasses the infinite universe. It is not a land, but a spiritual reality. The size of My Kingdom does not depend on its area, but its spiritual depth. My Kingdom in certain souls reaches its plenitude and is greater than the one which encompasses entire tracts of Heaven. I do not reign equally in souls, but differently in every one. There are souls in whom I reign in such a perfect way, that the size of My Kingdom in them seems to encompass the entire country. In your soul, I create My reality, I establish My Kingdom, and I wait to see if you will let Me extend it to the boundaries of My Kingdom in Heaven. I wish to rule in the soul as I rule in Heaven, in a perfect and complete way.
“My Kingdom is not of this world” – My Son said when He suffered rejection and condemnation from people. And today I repeat to you the same thing. Even though in My Kingdom you are great, as the sons of God, in the world you will be looked down upon as madmen. For My Kingdom is won through suffering. So by asking Me – “Thy Kingdom come” – you ask Me to expand My authority in you, in souls, in nations, in everything. My Kingdom is the world of the spirit that defeated the world of the flesh. My Kingdom is invincible, and although its strength is invisible in the world, it reigns over nations. In the souls who desire to implement it on Earth, I reign with great momentum. The Kingdom of God is not for the dead. It is not won by dying, but by living and fighting every day. After death, the fight is over, and thus My Kingdom is attained or not. But the souls who love Me, live in My Kingdom already here on Earth.
Thus, by asking Me for My Kingdom to come on Earth, you ask Me for the victory of My Will in every soul. When I will be victorious in every soul, I will establish My Kingdom everywhere. There is a Kingdom on Earth in which I reign through My spirit and in it I exercise My dominion, receiving glory. In the present state, however, it is much weakened. The heart of My authority beats slower and slower, and that is because it lacks those who have been taking care of its health. The holy Church is the image of My Kingdom on Earth, but I reign in it to the extent to which I reign in its members. The Church is not a lifeless creation, and so My Kingdom is not constant. It falls and rises in each of its members. Through the rising of every one of them, I desired to reign over the whole world, to pour My Spirit in the nations. Now, however, the nations have seen through My plan and fight with My Kingdom on Earth. They will not defeat it, but they will force it to flee. My Kingdom will rise however through sacrifice and I will reign over the whole world.
When I will be chosen as King, I will establish My Kingdom everywhere. Then My Will shall be fulfilled. The spirit will win over the world. I will reign from one end to the other in all things and in everyone, and My Kingdom will reach its plenitude. Pray for the world to recognize, that by fighting against Me, it passes judgement upon itself. And by desiring that I expand My reign over your land, you will save it. I am the King who comes in peace. My power transcends the power of all the kingdoms of the Earth. If you surrender to Me and step down from your thrones for My glory, open the gates of your cities and recognize Me as King, you will save your lives. If you will fight Me, you will perish. So pray that you may be able to discern My Kingdom which is coming, and when it will come, it will bring deliverance to the spirit by inflicting death to the body. Come out to meet Me, and I will receive you and you will enter through the gates of the cities in My entourage. Come out of the cities which fiercely defend their sin, because otherwise you will perish together with them. I bless those who bring on My Kingdom. I bless those who ask Me for it with faith. Ask with faith, look forward with longing, and what you seek in your hearts shall come to pass for you.
7. Holy Mass
Saint Agnes: Today I wish to take you to our Holy Mass. It differed a lot from your Holy Mass, but not at all in the forms. Mainly in the spiritual part. Forms changed over time and they were also dependent on the place where the Sacrifice was performed, but it was always the Sacrifice of our Lord and we participated in it with true faith. This was the main difference separating our times. While an exception happened at the Holy Mass, a person with an impure heart who did not seek God, your Holy Masses gather people who do not participate in them at all. They do not pray. They are only present with the body, but not the heart. Such people are the majority. In my times, going to the Holy Mass was already a profession of faith and a sacrifice for God, because there was always a threat of falling into the hands of persecutors of Christians, of whom there was no shortage at that time. After each Holy Mass, my soul was strengthened by a great hope and new graces. I knew that this Holy Mass has effects for my soul in eternity and that they last independently of what will happen to my body on Earth. It was a treasure that we were accumulating in this life, risking the loss of the temporal life. Thus, we valued this brief time of experiencing the mysteries of our faith in communion with those who believed in the same way. We valued our common prayer at the voice of the priest and staying together if only for this short time face to face with God present among us. The Holy Communion that we received could be our last meal for the road to Heaven, for the time of trial and persecution. The time of the Holy Mass elapsed inexorably quickly, and we had to go back to our homes and to the society in which talking about the things that mattered the most to us, Christians, was dangerous.
The blessing of the priest was a strength that was carried out from the Holy Mass. It had to be enough for all the time until the next Holy Mass, which was never a sure thing, because at each subsequent meeting we were hearing about further persecutions. We prayed for those who did not come anymore to the next Holy Mass, for those who suffered in prison and were condemned to death. We prayed for those who were in imminent danger and for those who have already made a sacrifice of their lives. Our thoughts and desires were close to God. We were learning bravery and the price that must be paid for faith. From the Passion of our Lord Jesus, we drew courage and strength to abide in the faith and to stave off fear. We asked for the gifts of the Holy Spirit for the whole community of Christians, and especially for the hour of trial, so that we may be able to keep faithfulness. The great testimony of those times was the fruit of the great prayer of entire communities, and not only of individual holiness. People made a sacrifice to God with entire houses, from the youngest to the oldest. These were not individual occurrences, but the sacrifice of the whole Church. You are lacking among you the spirit of community, the love for the Church and the prayers to the Holy Spirit for each other, but the most lacking is the faith in the living presence of God during the sacrifice of the Holy Mass and in His action bearing fruit in real effects for the temporal and the eternal life.
Each Holy Mass is in a way a separate world, which gives back to us its riches for a sincere movement of the heart. Only this once we can receive them and keep them forever. The next Holy Mass those are already different gifts and different graces, but not the same. The grace for a specific moment can not be repeated anymore. These graces are close to one sigh of the heart, but then they disappear. However, during this moment, we can obtain them and then they last forever, for all eternity. Do not waste so much the time of the Holy Mass, because it is a grace the meaning of which you can not even imagine. You can participate every day in this grace, and you do not do it well even once a week. You will not obtain anywhere such great graces as during the sacrifice of the Holy Mass. Only from this Sacrifice flows such power and depth of unity with God, connecting the soul forever with the Person of the Savior. It seems that only saints should live on Earth having so many Holy Masses and so many opportunities to make use of their graces. If you had our faith and so many Holy Masses at every step, you would become a society of angels. Ask the Holy Spirit for true faith, because you have the Holy Masses, and what they will be like depends on your faith.
Saint Agnes: Today I will talk to you about the Holy Spirit. About who He was for us and what place He now occupies in your faith. It seems that He has been moved away from human hearts as incomprehensible and inconceivable. And in our times, receiving Him was the second fundamental sacrament necessary at all to be a Christian. Without the gifts of the Holy Spirit, we would have been a frightened handful hoping to survive. Only with the Holy Spirit we were Christians in the full sense of the word. The Holy Spirit accompanied all our meetings. We prayed to Him in every difficulty. He was precisely God with us, who taught us to get to know Jesus and to act according to His Will. When we received the Holy Spirit, we became united with Him through this sacrament. Not only at the time of the sacrament, but forever. It is as if He was descending from Heaven to accompany us forever on our way to Heaven. He was like a good mother watching over the development of the child and a guide on a lonely and unknown path.
The care and the guidance of the Holy Spirit manifested themselves on many planes of our lives, not only through the extraordinary graces that we experienced, but through His courage and strength with which He filled us. Sometimes it seems to me that what has been obvious to us, for you became unbelievable. Even though you receive the same sacrament and the same Spirit, through the lack of faith you do not gain such graces and you do not behold such signs as we have been witnesses of. The signs of the Holy Spirit aroused our faith, but without faith there would be no sings; and so today the world lacks both faith and signs. Back in the day, before receiving this sacrament, we prepared for it in a particular way.
These were not just teachings, for the Holy Spirit, by coming, instructed us Himself and gave us the understanding of many Godly affairs. The preparation consisted in opening ourselves to the reception of the Holy Spirit. In order to open ourselves properly, we used fasting and fervent prayer accompanied by mortification. The entire community prayed for those who were to be the recipients of this sacrament. For it is not enough to prepare the mind. One should rather prepare the heart. It is in it that the Holy Spirit will dwell when He will come, and from it He will act upon the mind, the soul, and the whole body of man, and even on the personality that sometimes undergoes an explicit change after the reception of this sacrament. Fainthearted and nervous people became full of courage and peace.
For us, the Holy Spirit was a companion on Earth, a companion of all our prayers and sacrifices. He was not an inaccessible God in Heaven, but precisely the One who descended to us, in order to look after our community and every Christian individually. It was He who led us in action and warned us against the dangers. He gave us dreams and spoke through the elect. He brought us joy and bravery. He dwelt with us and lived with our life, so that we would not remain alone and would not get lost. And today you strive to get to know God without the help of the Holy Spirit. His role and His love are not properly understood. Lord Jesus has sent to us His Spirit so that He might remind us of everything and make us His tools in the plan of the Salvation of the world. Without the Holy Spirit, we can only be seekers of God, but not guides for others. The Holy Spirit gives everything. If you want to have a greater faith, ask precisely the Holy Spirit, because He is the creator of human souls. He transforms them and makes them ripen in grace, so that one day they may bloom with the fullness of His gifts, or rather Him alone, when through His gifts we will accept Him alone in fullness. Pray to the Holy Spirit and you will transform the face of the Church, which will become again a witness and an apostle full of fervor and bravery. May God bless you and support you through His Spirit in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Translated from : Kontemplacja Ducha Swiętego. Grzechynia 2017, p. 189-223