Spirit Daily



Apparition To Nun In U.S. Made Pointed Remarks Indicating Fruit Of Sin Was War

By Michael H. Brown

Nearly two years ago we began a lengthy series of articles based on what has become known as the "Our Lady of America" apparitions. These started in 1956 and continued until the death in 2000 of the seer, a holy nun from Ohio named Sister Mildred Mary Neuzil.

Among the requests in these apparitions -- which focused on the U.S. -- was that the American bishops hurry back to holiness, guide our youth, and foster devotion. There was special emphasis on turning the National Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Washington into a major pilgrimage center, a place of spiritual "miracles." Sister Neuzil said she was asked to have a statue of the Blessed Mother constructed and placed with a solemn procession in the National Shrine, and that if this happened the U.S. would return to the kind of morality that made it great (she said no nation had ever been so blessed) and the shrine would become a place of "wonders." There was the directive from the Blessed Mother that the U.S. especially protect its young, who she said were to lead the world back to purity. It was through this devotion that Sister Mildred said the U.S. would assume a place of special spiritual (as opposed to just political) leadership. And it was through such devotion, fostered by the bishops (her "special sons"), that the nation would avoid what Sister Mildred repeatedly warned were coming events. A request to do this -- to foster such devotion, especially in the installation of the statue -- was sent to all cardinals and bishops in the U.S., requesting not only construction of the statue but a solemn consecration of the U.S. in order to avoid "catastrophe." The letter asked the official Church "to honor her as Our Lady of America and to unite all the bishops of the United States in consecrating America to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for the protection of our nation and for the sanctification of so many souls."

While the series of articles generated enormous interest, the cause of the apparition, which long before had received the imprimatur of Archbishop Paul F. Leibold of Cincinnati, has not been taken up by American bishops, and seems unlikely to be acted upon in the near future. There is no statue or commemoration of any type at the National Basilica, and the basilica's rector told us that there were no such plans to install one. We respect the discernment of the rector and bishops, at the same time that we must point out the events that have occurred since those articles: September 11; the Church scandals in America (which have seriously eroded the influence of bishops at this critical historical time); and now a major war.

"My father is angry," the Virgin allegedly had told Sister Neuzil. "If My children will not listen to My Heart, which is a voice of mercy and instruction, punishment will come swiftly and none shall be able to stay it. The pleadings of My Heart have held back the divine justice about to descend on an ungrateful and sinful generation."

In addition to purity -- and sanctification of children -- what was most lacking in the world, the nun quoted Jesus as saying, was faith. "There are so few souls that believe in Me and My love. They profess their belief and their love, but they do not live this belief. Their hearts are cold, for without faith there can be no love."

It was in 1956, eve of the Feast of the North American Martyrs, that the Virgin began her apparitions. When she appeared, said Sister Mildred, it was to say that miracles "greater than those granted at Lourdes and Fatima" would be granted here in America, the United States in particular, if we do as she desires.  

What the Virgin desired was the moral leadership of a nation that had been consecrated to her and was now straying. "I wish it to be the country dedicated to my purity," said Mary in a dramatic revelation of America's role in a spiritual territory that has long been dominated by foreign apparitions. "I desire, through my children of America, to further the cause of faith and purity among peoples and nations. I come to you, O children of America, as a last resort".

We ask now: was such a tough tone legitimate? Is there really "doom" in store for this nation (and continent)?

With God, nothing is dire -- ever. There are ways out of everything. With God there is no such thing as a situation without an exit. And more than anything, He is a loving, kind, and merciful God. This must always be emphasized. At the end of life is the fantastically loving Light of God.

But we think it's a shame, perhaps even a tragedy, that there has not been a major re-consecration of the United States to the Immaculate Heart. This is a nation founded by a Marian devotee named Christopher Columbus, a nation whose largest river was originally known by French explorers as the "River of the Immaculate Conception," a nation whose capital is surrounded by Mary-Land.

And while many nations may carp at it now, think of what the world would be like -- what Europe would be like, what the lands around the former Soviet Union would be like -- had America not been involved in World War One, World War II, and the war against Communism. Those who appreciate the modern way of living may want to imagine a world without the endless American inventions (electricity, cars, steamships, airplanes, radio, television, air conditioning, fertilizers, anti-biotics, by-pass surgery, blood pressure medicine, and yes, of course, computers -- to name a few).

No nation has ever transformed the globe in such a way. But it is also a nation -- a continent -- which has lost its spiritual course. Such was apparent even back in the early days of the revelations to Sister Neuzil, who was known as an extremely patriotic nun. "My child, there will be peace, as has been promised, but not until my children are purified and cleansed from defilement, and clothed thus with the white garment of grace, are made ready to receive this peace, so long promised and so long held back because of the sins of men," said the apparition. "My children, either you will do as I desire and reform your lives, or God Himself will need to cleanse you in the fires of untold punishment."

We ignore these messages at our peril. Sister Neuzil, who spent much of her life as a cloistered, suffering sister of the Precious Blood, also claimed to have visions of saints and angels -- including two angels who she said were protectors of the United States and one of whom allegedly said that "if the people of this land carry out faithfully the instructions and pleadings of the Lord Jesus and the Virgin Mother then they will be following me to the hour of peace."

That was the course: to revert right back to the devotion upon which the American continent was founded. "America, the United States in particular, is being given the tremendous, yet privileged, opportunity to lead all nations in a spiritual renewal never before so necessary, so important, so vital," wrote Sister Neuzil in a book of messages. This was what the leaders, what the politicians, what the bishops needed to know: that it was not politics or bureaucracy or military action that would make things safer, but purity, but goodness. When asked if there would be a nuclear war, the Blessed Mother told Sister Neuzil: "My faithful one, if my warnings are taken seriously and enough of my children strive constantly and faithfully to renew and reform themselves in their inward and outward lives, then there will be no nuclear war. What happens to the world depends upon those who live in it. There must be much more good than evil prevailing in order to prevent the holocaust that is so near approaching."

Was this message heeded? Is it heeded even now -- in the midst of the second war involving the United States in less than two years, and what may be shaping up as a global "holy" war? Is it a coincidence that the Virgin emphasized peace in the same way as peace has been emphasized at Medjugorje? Is it a coincidence that one major apparition occurred on the anniversary of the great Fatima miracle? According to the nun, America, led by its bishops, was to serve as a beacon for all of humanity to return to Jesus, peacefulness, and purity.

And so now at this critical juncture we must ask ourselves: Have we heeded her requests? Have we installed the devotions? Have we kept our young pure? Have we disseminated goodness (hello, Hollywood)?

Sister Neuzil feared that the burden of leadership would be too great for the U.S., but she was assured by the Blessed Mother "that Michael and the whole army of Blessed Spirits will give their assistance at all times."

It was the United States, said another message, "that is to lead the world to peace, the peace of Christ, the peace that He brought with Him from Heaven in His birth as man in the little town of Bethlehem."

What a commission! But also: what a responsibility. "Dear child, unless the United States accepts and carries out faithfully the mandate given to it by Heaven to lead the world to peace, there will come upon it and all nations a great havoc of war and incredible suffering," the apparition had warned. "If, however, the United States is faithful to this mandate from Heaven and yet fails in the pursuit of peace because the rest of the world will not accept or cooperate, then the United States will not be burdened with the punishment about to fall."

As stated, these messages not only received a formal imprimatur (with an additional Nihil Obstat from Most Reverend Daniel Pilarczyk, who is the current Cincinnati archbishop), but a medal was struck and a plaque dedicated to Our Lady of America hung in the chancery until it was later removed. Just last week we received an inspired letter from another nun, Sister Anne Marie Walsh of Bosque, New Mexico, who urged that those suffering offer up their suffering for the cause of this apparition. "I was especially struck by the messages regarding how America has been chosen by God to spiritually lead the world and that the key to avoiding chastisements would be purity of heart, and devotion to Our Lady under her title of the Immaculate Conception," wrote this nun. "Given the urgency of the messages, the 'closeness of the terrible purification that is about to fall upon all nations,' I'm wondering why we can't put together an army of prayer warriors made up of the sick and suffering, who would storm Heaven on behalf of the intentions of Our Lady of America. The principle at work here is that certain graces are granted through suffering alone, meaning God does not give them in any other way."

Sister Neuzil said much the same. There is suffering and fasting -- especially during this time of Lent. What a golden opportunity! Will we let it slip by? "Our situation today reminds me of something the Holy Father said several years ago, right before the Great Jubilee Year," notes Sister Walsh. "He was speaking, as he often did at the time, about being faithful to the graces of the Holy Spirit at this time, and that if we were faithful, we would see a new springtime of Christianity, a flourishing of the faith that's never been seen before. But he also said, if we were not faithful, we would enter into a new age of barbarism. We certainly saw a taste of that with September 11."

[Sister Walsh can be contacted at srannemarie@softhome.net; for Our Lady of America Center, call 419-435-3838 or write P.O. Box 445, Fostoria, Ohio 44830]

[For Our Lady of America messages and articles, see The Best of Spirit Daily or Our Lady of America Messages]

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