Saturday, October 8, 2011
Living through 'Lepanto II', 2011. Yes, now in the third millennium!
As you can see, the painting below is not of the Battle of Lepanto but of St. John Bosco's dream of the 'Barque of Peter' and the two pillars towards which the Holy Father is trying to guide her. (They are seen there on the horizon, the one pillar surmounted by Mary our Blessed Mother and the other by the Blessed Sacrament. I for one believe the saint's dream to have been prophetic. I should be surprised if any readers here are unfamiliar with it. (For brief background, read here. ) The link leads you to an enlarged version of the painting and you can clearly see which part of the dream it depicts. The dead Pope lies on the deck. His successor has taken over. I am not going to invite opinion about when 'Lepanto II' began, but sure as eggs, we are up to our necks in it now.
If the Battle of Lepanto took place as the response of Christendom to the gravest peril in her history at that time, what now? It was a single naval battle that took place in a specific geographical area on a particular date. Now it is very different and it is worse. Christendom is attacked not only by the Ottomans, but by the secularism, atheism and hedonism of the West, and from within her own fortress. And any day we can read over our morning coffee what the dissidents have said a few hours earlier. It is a cancerous and sprawling horror. That is what we are called to fight in 'Lepanto II'..
440 years after Lepanto we are facing an even more grave peril. Pius V, who called the Church to prayer at a time when news of his exhortation must have taken some time to get through, apparently 'knew 'of the Lepanto victory before the confirming news got through to him a fortnight after the battle. He reigned only six years. Our dear Holy Father Benedict has already reigned longer. But his task is incomparably more complex.
Saint Pope Pius V, Our Lady of Victories, Our Lady of the Rosary pray for our Holy Father Benedict and for us, his flock.We are in that churning sea. We must fight. And we will do it with the help of your Rosary.