Protection of Country
Shoes of Readiness
“Stand therefore… as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.”
In Ephesians 6, St. Paul compares the gospel of peace to shoes that make us “ready.” Ready for what? Ready to GO.
One who puts on shoes is ready to leave a place enroute to another. So, at the heart of this verse is the importance of mission and evangelization. It is not enough to protect ourselves, our families, our homes, and our churches. Having been fortified by the gospel of peace, we are to share that peace with others who are outside our immediate circles.
In this way, the peace of the gospel spreads throughout the country. And only when each country is at peace within itself and with God can nations be at peace with other nations.
We see it in the book of Isaiah.
“How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who publishes peace, who brings good news of happiness, who publishes salvation, who says to Zion, ‘Your God reigns.’ The voice of your watchmen—they lift up their voice; together they sing for joy…” (Isaiah 52:7-18)
You Are Sent.
In Matthew 10, Jesus sends the apostles out to evangelize the world, to take the Good News to all the earth. But He doesn’t send them out with words. He doesn’t just tell them to go and proclaim the Kingdom. He commands them to bring forth the kingdom.
The gospel tells us that Jesus “gave them authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.” (Mt. 10:1)
Jesus gave them power to work and act on his behalf. He told them to proclaim that the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand. (Mt 10:7) Then
He commanded them to “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons.” (Mt 10:8)
So you see, Jesus’ peace plan for the nations rests on the apostles who are sent. He told them when they enter a home to “let your peace rest on it.” (Mt 10:13)
But He made it very clear that He was not sending them out to peaceful places.
“Be on your guard; you will be handed over to local councils and flogged in the synagogues. On my account, you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time, you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you… you will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” (Mt. 10:17-22)
Jesus gave them power when he sent them out because He was sending them out into a war zone. But the end goal was peace and conversion. He was relying on them. Therefore, understand that the protection of country rests in part on the shoulders of the apostles, even today.
If the apostles are sent to proclaim the good news, to heal sickness, to cast out evil, to let peace rest on homes, but they do not go… then what becomes of the world? What happens if the apostles who were given power to usher in the kingdom stay put for fear of the persecution, the devil, the councils, the kings, and the governors? How can the Kingdom come if the kingdom bearers do not come? How can there be a plentiful harvest if the laborers will not go into the field?
The devil who is prince of the world wants the apostles of Jesus Christ on perpetual quarantine, trapped in fear and sickness. Because Satan knows the apostles have been given power and authority to dismantle his kingdom of darkness on earth – even if the apostles themselves don’t know it.
So, one of the most powerful ways we can protect our country is to go into it—into our communities, workplaces, schools. We do not have to go to far-off places or travel abroad. No. Opportunities for evangelization and ministry are closer than you think. They are right here in our own communities—those we visit in person and those we visit online.
And we don’t always need to preach gospel passages either. Sometimes we just need to live gospel values.
We are to work on God’s behalf, to GO, to speak. We are not to remain secluded; we are not to remain quiet. It is not enough to pray in our houses, to seek God in our homes. As apostles of Christ, we are soldiers. We have been sent to the lost.
To the lost who seek war, we must bring peace. Our faith cannot remain private but must become public. For this is the way that nations will be converted. Below are some other means by which God will protect our country and our world.
Rosary of the Unborn
We’ve already discussed the importance of the rosary in the section on “Protection of Family.” But the rosary is immensely powerful when it comes to “Protection of Country,” too. In fact, Mary has given us a specific rosary that serves as a powerful weapon for the Militia.
In every war there are the major, decisive battles that either cause you to win the war or lose it. It is no different in this spiritual war. The most decisive battle we experience currently is not against terrorism or maniacs testing nuclear arms. It is against abortion.
According to the World Health Organization, there are approximately 125,000 abortions occurring each day around the world, which corresponds to 40-50 million abortions every year. That’s 40-50 million distinct, eternal souls created by God, loved intensely, blessed with innate purpose. Just wiped off the planet.
That’s millions of family trees snuffed out in an instant. Millions of vocations—millions of parents, priests, ministers—millions of chosen personalities gifted with the ability to change the world for the better. Millions of gifts, crafted lovingly by the Hand of God, given to us for our benefit. Now gone. All gone. Many even thrown in dumpsters.
Do not be deceived. Do not think this is just some political issue, like taxes or jobs. This, my friends, is the battle of all battles, the battle that will inevitably decide our fate.
This is a sin of astronomical proportions. It is a direct sin against the very essence of God because it is a sin against life itself which comes from God. It is a sin against His generosity, His will, His plan. It is a sin against the incarnation of Jesus who made pregnancy sacred when He chose it as the means by which to come and save the world. It is a sin against the Holy Spirit who breathes life into each soul that takes residence in a womb. It is a sin against Mary who, even though Her pregnancy was unplanned, chose life for our sake.
This. Is. THE. Battle. And the Virgin Mary has come to warn us.
On July 13, 1997—exactly 80 years (to the day) after the Virgin Mary asked the children of Fatima to pray the Rosary for peace and atonement—Mary appeared to another visionary, this time in America.
Maureen Sweeny-Kyle was praying in a church in Ohio, when suddenly Mary appeared in the Church, holding a large, beaded Rosary. The 50 Hail Mary beads changed into the shapes of the 50 states and then slipped off the string of the Rosary and landed in a pile at Mary’s feet.
A few days later on July 17th, She appeared to Maureen again with all 50 states still in a pile at Her feet. There were two angels with Her this time. One angel picked up one of the states and handed it to the other angel. It was like sand in his hand. Then it turned into gold with some of the sand falling out as it changed. The gold was then given to the Virgin Mary who placed it into Her Immaculate Heart.
The Virgin Mary said to Maureen: "These are the faithful and righteous who have persevered in faith… Humbly understand that you are living in apocalyptic times and that this is a place of revelation—holy revelation. Tonight, I am asking you to accept your place in these times and to increase the grace in your hearts by your efforts through prayer and sacrifice.”
This message echoed the message She gave the children at Fatima 80 years prior.
Almost a month later, on August 10th, 1997, the Virgin Mary appeared to Maureen once again. This time all 50 states were in a pile at Her feet, and they are smoldering as if they were ashes. She gave Maureen a message that was to be made public for all people.
She said, “Abortion is the evil which races your country towards destruction. Only if this evil is overturned in hearts and in the world, can your nation be saved from certain death. Dear children, the tribulations have begun and proceed as labor pains of a woman with child, each one stronger and more telling than the one before. I come to you asking you to stop the death and destruction and the loss of life and souls… Dear children, you are the solution and the victory; therefore, pray, pray, pray.”
Once again, just as She had done so many times before with so many different seers, the Virgin Mary came to warn us of coming chastisements, and to plead with us to pray the Rosary.
She then appeared to Maureen with a different kind of Rosary. Instead of the 50 states, the beads on this Rosary were shaped like blue tear drops. Inside the 50 tear drops were 50 tiny fetuses curled up like they would be in a womb. The Virgin Mary called this the “Rosary of the Unborn” and asked Maureen to have it made for the public. It was a long, difficult task finding someone who could mass produce such a detailed bead… but five years later, the task was completed.
After it was completed, Mary and Jesus appeared to Maureen with special promises to those who pray the Rosary of the Unborn. The Virgin Mary said, “I affirm to you, my daughter, that each Hail Mary prayed from a loving heart will rescue one of these innocent lives from death by abortion.” (July 2, 2001)
That means 50 Hail Marys prayed on the Rosary of the Unborn will save 50 babies from abortion! Think how many babies that saves each week, each month, each year if we pray it daily! And that’s not all it does.
A month later Jesus appeared to Maureen and said: “Every rosary prayed from the heart to its completion on these beads mitigates the punishment as yet withstanding for the sin of abortion…When I say ‘punishment as yet withstanding’…I mean the punishment each soul deserves for taking part in this sin. Then too, I also refer to the greater punishment that awaits the world for embracing this sin.” (August 3, 2001)
On August 13, 2006, Jesus appeared again and said, “Today, my brothers and sisters, you fear—and with good cause—the event of a nuclear war…because of nuclear fallout…and yet I tell you, that the fallout from praying the Rosary of the Unborn is much more powerful than any nuclear bomb. You will not have an end to these threats against world peace until abortion is eliminated.”
Consecration to the Immaculate Heart
We discussed the importance of Marian consecration in the section “Protection of Soul.” But it is also relevant here, too, when we consider the “Protection of Country.” This is because the peace of the world has been entrusted to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, as She explained at Fatima.
During World War I, in 1917, the Virgin Mary appeared to three shepherd children in Fatima, Portugal and said to them, “The war (WWI) is going to end, but if people do not cease offending God, a worse one (WWII) will break out… God is about to punish the world for its crimes, by means of war, famine, and persecutions of the church and of the Holy Father.” She said, “To prevent this, I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to my Immaculate Heart, and on the First Saturdays of every month, Communions of reparation be made in atonement for the sins of the world.”
She promised the children, “If my wishes are fulfilled, Russia will be converted, and there will be peace. If not, then Russia will spread her errors throughout the world, bringing new wars and persecution of the church. The good will be martyred, and the Holy Father will have much to suffer. Certain nations will be annihilated. But in the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she will be converted, and the world will enjoy a period of peace. In Portugal, the faith will always be preserved...”
Why did the Blessed Virgin Mary specifically mention Russia in what appeared to be a message for the entire world? What was the significance of Russia in 1917?
Several months before this apparition, the radical Bolshevik Party began a Russian revolution under Marxist Vladimir Lenin. In November of 1917, less than a month after Mary’s last apparition in Fatima, the revolutionaries took control of the Russian government, forming the world’s first communist state. A civil war broke out between the Bolsheviks and those who rejected communism, but Russia's communist party claimed the victory.
The Russian “errors” that the Virgin Mary warned about in July 1917 were the errors of communism. She asked that a consecration be made, or else Russia would spread her errors throughout the world, bringing new wars and persecution of the church. The consecration was not made, and that's precisely what happened.
Communist Russia became a world power known as the Soviet Union, which gave credence to the Marxist philosophy and cultivated the spread of communism throughout the world. It also brought new wars, just as the Blessed Virgin Mary said it would—for example when the Soviet Union went head-to-head with the United States during the Cold War.
Unfortunately, the consecration of Russia was not completed. In 1931, Jesus himself appeared to Lucia, who was then a nun living in a convent. Lucia wrote that the Lord complained how “his ministers” had not completed the consecration. He said, “they will repent of it, and they will do it, but it will be late. Russia will have already spread its errors in the world, provoking wars and persecutions against the church…”
In 1952 Pope Pius XII wrote the apostolic letter Carissimis Russiae Populis (On the Immaculate Heart and the People of Russia). Unfortunately, this was not a public consecration. It was in the midst of the cold war, and many felt tensions were too high to call out Russia's errors. But in 1982, St. John Paul II publicly consecrated the “Modern World to Our Lady of Fátima,” and he made special mention of Russia.
A few years later, the Berlin Wall came down, and communist regimes were overthrown throughout Europe. The Soviet Union then dissolved into its various republics. But unfortunately, the errors had already begin to spread.
Fast Forward to today. Tenets of Marxism have spread throughout the world, even reaching the Western World. This is a sign that we cannot wait any longer. We must consecrate our hearts and nations to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
St. Michael the Archangel
In the book of Daniel chapter 8, the angel Gabriel appeared to Daniel to help him understand a vision that he recently had.
Gabriel told him, “Listen, and I will tell you what will take place later in the period of wrath... the ram that you saw with the two horns, these are the kings of Media (modern day Tehran) and Persia (modern day Iran). The male goat is the king of Greece.” (Daniel 8:19-21)
These are key players in the tribulations from which an evil one shall arise. “He shall grow strong in power, shall cause fearful destruction, and shall succeed in what he does... by his cunning he shall make deceit prosper under his hand... without warning he shall destroy many and shall even rise up against the Prince of princes.” (Daniel 8:24-25)
In Daniel chapter 10, Gabriel returned to Daniel to explain more about his visions.
“Daniel, from the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words have been heard, and I have come because of your words. But the prince of the kingdom of Persia opposed me for 21 days. So, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, and I left him there with the prince of the kingdom of Persia, and have come to help you understand what is to happen to your people at the end of days.” (Daniel 10:12-14)
This is huge. God gave Daniel prophetic visions that concern, among others, the kingdom of Persia. Then, the “prince” of the kingdom of Persia fought Gabriel to prevent him from explaining the vision to Daniel.
This is not a human “prince” because he calls St. Michael the Archangel one of the chief “princes.” These “princes” are spiritual beings.
The “prince” of Persia referenced in Daniel then is a dark angel of Satan. We know this because he opposed Gabriel, an angel of light sent by God.
Understand the importance here.
These spiritual beings are eternal. Persia may have changed its name to Iran, but that dark “prince” is still working to foil God’s plans. He is still working for the rise of the evil one that Daniel wrote about.
What does that mean for us, today?
The answer is found later in Daniel. After Gabriel explained everything to Daniel, he said, “Now I must return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I am through with him, the prince of Greece will come. But I am to tell you what is inscribed in the book of truth. There is no one with me who contends against these princes except Michael, your prince.” (Daniel 10:20-21)
These scriptures are a reminder that we need to call upon St. Michael now more than ever. He is a chief prince in the battle for world peace.
Pope Leo XIII knew this. That’s why he composed the St. Michael Prayer in 1886. During Mass, the Pope had a terrifying vision of demonic spirits (“princes”) that gathered on what he called “the Eternal City” (Rome).
It’s important to remember that it was the Roman Empire that took control of Greece after Daniel’s vision.
After the Pope’s vision, the newly composed St. Michael Prayer was prayed in unison by the congregation after every single Mass.
Somewhere along the lines, though, the church stopped doing this. But perhaps we need to start again. Perhaps the unseen battle between princes is intensifying more than we know, and our chief needs our prayers.
Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel
"Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil; May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; And do thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan and all evil spirits who wander through the world for the ruin of souls. Amen."
Community Clocks & the 24-Hours
In 1882, Jesus appeared to a young Italian visionary named Luisa Piccarreta and showed her the last 24 hours of His Passion, starting with the moment He said goodbye to His Mother (just before the Last Supper) and ending with the moment He was buried. Jesus then asked Luisa to meditate on these hours.
After Luisa had been living the Hours of His Passion for over thirty years, Saint Hannibal told her to write the revelations in a book. Saint Hannibal was greatly moved by the book and printed it with a Preface that he wrote himself.
In the Preface to the 24 Hours of the Passion, St. Hannibal recalled Christ’s promise of protection to those who pray the Hours, saying: “If on account of only one soul doing these hours, Jesus would spare a city of chastisements and would give grace to as many souls as there are words of these sorrowful hours, how many graces might a community [or any group of individuals] expect to receive?”
On May 16, 1917, Jesus confirmed this when He told Luisa, “These Hours are the order of the Universe; they put Heaven and earth in harmony, and restrain Me from sending the world to ruin..."
Now, I know, some may feel discouraged at the thought of praying for 24 hours straight, given the need to work and sleep. But these hours can be done in several different ways.
The Standard 24-Hour Meditation
The first option is to set a reminder or alarm on your phone. At the start of each hour read the meditation for that hour (which takes between 5 and 10 minutes) then meditate on it when you go back to your work, duties, or sleep.
A Condensed 12-Hour Meditation
The second option is to do it just like the 24-Hour meditation but meditate on two reflections each hour so as not to disrupt your sleep at night.
A Collective 24-Hour Group Meditation (aka a Community Clock)
The third option is to pray the 24-Hours with a group of 24 people. Each person would be assigned one of the 24 hours (for example, the 6 PM hour or the 4 AM hour). With each hour of the day assigned, the members of the group collectively complete the hours together. If you complete the hours as a group and want to continue the devotion as a perpetual clock, it might be helpful to assign each person an initial time and then rotate hours. That way, the burden of the nighttime hours is shared.
The Blessed Virgin Mary also spoke to American visionary, Maureen Kyle, about the importance of living in God’s will, especially as it relates to Holy Love, which is to love God above all else and neighbor as self.
The Virgin Mary did not speak the first time She appeared to Maureen in Elyria, Ohio.
“I was at Adoration at a neighborhood Church,” Maureen said. “And Our Lady was suddenly just standing to the side of the Monstrance—She never puts her back to Jesus or the Blessed Sacrament. She had a large, beaded rosary in her hands, and I thought, ‘Am I the only one seeing her?’ People were getting up and leaving or coming in and not paying any attention. All of a sudden, the fifty Hail Mary beads turned into the shapes of the fifty states. Then she left. I didn’t know why she was there, but I thought, ‘maybe she wants me to pray for the country.’”
Sometime later, the Blessed Mother appeared to Maureen again, and again the Hail Mary beads turned into the shapes of the fifty states. This time, though, the states then turned into a sort of dust, and then fell at Mary’s feet. Afterwards, the Blessed Mother explained this vision to Maureen.
"Today, sadly, your nation and most countries have chosen a course contrary to Holy Love," Our Lady said. "It is a path never before accepted with such conviction and lack of conscience. It is a path contrary to life and the laws of nature given by God. The world does not see the consequences of its choices. When I showed you all the states of your nation piled at My feet in a smoldering mass, I was revealing to you the end this nation and many others have chosen. It is a consequence that causes the angels to tremble before the throne of God seeking mitigation. I myself weep for such a loss." (October 1, 1997)