The Shrine Revisited

By Charlie Johnston

A few days ago I visited with a priest who pointed out a significant error I had made in a comment I made to a post on December 30 of last year on the Consecration of Russia. I was describing my encounter with National Park Rangers during my Novena in Mt. Meeker to end my pilgrimage. My explanation of the episode made it appear as if I had rescued the world from having the Storm enter its fullness three years ago. That is not what happened: my obedience allowed me to see God’s extravagant mercy in a unique way – but it was the growing prayers and return to the faith of many  throughout the world – and God’s extravagant mercy – that spared us from the full onset of the Storm then. It was a very emotional moment for me, for I had been dreading it for months…and then to see it delayed filled me with the sort of joy I imagine Abraham must have felt when God stayed his hand with Isaac. After over 400 posts and almost 10,000 comments, I imagine I have said a few other things clumsily and appreciate serious counsel on any that have appeared. In any case, here is my corrected version of that comment, followed by a reprint of the story of the Shrine..

Corrected Comment

“When I was on my pilgrimage, I very much dreaded going to the top of Mt. Meeker. I had been told that when I reached the summit – which I was directed to climb to – the gates of mercy would be shut and the Storm would enter into the fulness of its fury. The sides people had chosen by this time would be hardened. One could still get back to the side of faith, but it would be much harder and entail much sacrifice – and few would make it successfully.

I am obedient. I walked across the country with serious neurological damage. But I dreaded this. I had also lived, since childhood, the agreement that I would obey any legitimate authority on earth when it exercised legitimate authority in contradiction to what I had been ordered. This is not as shocking as you might think. God can melt legitimate authorities objections – and on several occasions He has when it was necessary. It is humble submission, keeping my feet on the ground, and not becoming an unaccountable law unto myself.

I suffer an often hidden disability. I could not walk up the mountain and back in a single day. So I was walking up and camping during the Novena. The third day, I was confronted with National Park Rangers who rousted me at gunpoint, for camping was not allowed beyond a certain area. Once they realized I was harmless, everything was fine. But I was not allowed to camp close enough to the summit to be able to make it up and back in a single day, given my disability. I was utterly delighted. I had to feel something like my namesake, Abraham, did when the Lord pulled his hand back from Isaac. For the last few months of my pilgrimage, I dreaded getting to the top…it felt like I was going to be spiritual executioner to many. The Lord used my normal obedience to legitimate authority to spare me this. On the fifth day, I did as best I could, regardless. I got above the tree line, but I clearly could not make it to the top and get back down before it was deep dark – and I had already encountered four bears in the mountain. So I never reached the summit.

During the rest of the Novena I was given to know that because of the growing obedience and prayers of many, God would shorten the number of days in the fulness of the agony of the Storm. Because of my obedience to His command and my later obedience to legitimate ordinary authority, I was given to see that mercy in a unique way. And the Lord would leave the gates of mercy open for people to cross back over easily into the faith and truth as the onset of the fullness of the Storm was delayed. But had I stubbornly defied normal authority and snuck up to the summit as I had first promised, I would have been punished by God for my disobedience.

You can make of this what you will, but I was profoundly grateful to God – and learned something about the extent of His tenderness and mercy – and how He is ever ready to bend His demands when we live obedience. I have read several times that one of the few things that made St. John Paul visibly angry was when some well-meaning person told him he needed to consecrate Russia properly. Any of you who wish can correct what you think is St. John Paul’s great error on the matter. Both by temperament and personal experience, I completely believe he did NOT make a partial job of it, but did precisely what God wanted of him in the matter. And I am happy to take that conviction to my judgment. Never make the mistake of underestimating God’s tender mercy.”

And now, the reprint of the background on the Shrine:

The Shrine

About charliej373

Charlie Johnston is a former newspaper editor, radio talk show host and political consultant. From Feb. 11, 2011 to Aug. 21, 2012, he walked 3,200 miles across the country, sleeping in the woods, meeting people and praying as he went. He has received prophetic visitation all his life, which he has vetted through a trio of priests over the last 20 years, and now speaks publicly about on this site. Yet he emphasizes that we find God most surely through the ordinary, doing the little things we should with faith and fidelity. Hence the name, The Next Right Step. The visitations inform his work, but are not the focus of it. He lives in the Archdiocese of Denver in the United States.
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30 Responses to The Shrine Revisited

  1. YongDuk says:

    A priest when I was in Seminary said to our class that as soon as he heard anyone [like a Saint or a Prophet] holding back the “Hand of God” / “Wrath of God”, he shut the book and threw it out.

    I remember reading St. Faustina, then Blessed, and thinking, he would never read her and the Message of Divine Mercy. (I forgot about Abraham and Moses or didn’t apply it to those “Old” Old Testament places.)

    Charlie, when I read your mis-statement. I wasn’t bothered. I had seen your Birmingham video. Your sincerity before the Lord was evident.

    I merely said, “Oh, goes to show you, [Young Duk}, what you and judge! God choose the little, even when garrulous, to confound the proud!”

    So, while I welcome your re-print and quasi-retraction, to quote someone else: Could it be as you said, and that you were supported by more prayers than you realize as Moses arms were?

    Charlie, I do not hold you on a pedestal, I merely see you as a fellow brother of the Lord and rejoice in your obedience, which holds such greater weight than most modern day folk–Bishop, Priest, Lay person alike–realize!

    So, Charlie, that is fine if you were corrected by this priest friend of yours, but, as you said to BJ, if you promoted yourself in the media, I would not have listened; if you had promoted yourself as the “Mt. Meeker Saviour”, I would not have listened. You did honestly say that you felt in your heart that if you had summited Mt. Meeker things would have been different and that God allowed you to be an example how the simple, ordinary, garrulous or [I forget how my mom described you] does have import to God and to change His Heart/to stay His Hand, etc. That is how God works using a lowly St. Faustina or a lowly Charlie Johnston.

    Holy Lay people keep unholy Hierarchs humble.

    Charlie, your persona keeps me humble even if I wane eloquent…

    God is good; thank you for your yes and for the hope for us who want to be good when we feel so weak and little and gruff and uncut and rough and not silent enough like St. Faustina!!

    Liked by 7 people

    • charliej373 says:

      Oooo…I love that formulation – “wane eloquent.” No, I think my priest friend was absolutely right. Sometimes we have a hard time exactly describing what a truly emotion-laden incident means to us. I was so taken with the extravagant mercy when I was dutifully, but sorrowfully, on my way to live an obligation I desperately wanted not to. So I overstated what it meant – but not what it meant for my heart.

      Liked by 5 people

      • YongDuk says:

        Okay, that speaks to my heart.

        I have had even before Seminary the image of my holding a very old Priest as he lay dying. I am not sure if he is African or South Asian, but I know that I held him. Only years later did the Vision pan-out to show more and what I saw is as you say, “I was so taken with the extravagant mercy when I was dutifully, but sorrowfully, on my way to live an obligation I desperately wanted not to.” While I was honored and humbled to be in that position to minister to him than more than just the Sacraments, I did not want to be, but looking at the many, many, oh too many Bishops and Clergy I know, I wondered who else would be willing to be there and suffer that and so I stayed and faced what I had to.

        Please pray for a weak brother, Charlie,… and others please pray for us. This is the “Grey” I mentioned.


        Liked by 4 people

  2. Beckita says:

    Obedience. Thank you, Charlie. Just yesterday, Anthony Mullen wrote about obedience while utilizing the words of a great spiritual teacher of our times, Fr. Jacques Philippe, in his small book: “In the School of the Holy Spirit.”

    I have noticed people continue to comment that they falter or struggle with knowing the next right step. I highly recommend Fr. Jacques’ book for assistance. He gives concrete and simple ways to live under the direction of the Holy Spirit, to “Go Forth” with confidence taking the next right step. And if you’re one who has practiced and honed this skill, you will still be inspired, edified and further grow in refining the Little Way of TDL.

    PS ALL of Fr. Jacques’ books are enriching. Anyone wrestling with worry and/or anxiety? “Searching for and Maintaining Peace” is filled with hope that you really can train yourself to to do your part to enter God’s Peace while allowing His Grace to propel you securely in this mindset. “The Way of Trust and Love” is Father’s book with the subtitle, “A Retreat Guided by St. Therese of Lisieux.” We are blessed!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Beckita says:

      And, Charlie, thanks also for the repost of “The Shrine” piece. It has even richer meaning on the reread and the images are amazing! My son and his family live in Denver so I immediately thought of making an annual pilgrimage from these northern Rockies to Mt. Meeker if I’m meant to survive the upcoming events. And the people of the Kingdom…


  3. BD says:

    Hi Charlie, Just a quick comment concerning the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. I believe Pope St. John Paul did what he was shown to do, period. Sister Lucia said it was accepted by Heaven. It was not done however prior to 1960 as requested. There may be some consequences for that failure, we shall see. We all know how this ends however.


  4. El ingeniero de Tepeyac says:

    “but it was the growing prayers and return to the faith of many throughout the world – and God’s extravagant mercy – that spared us from the full onset of the Storm then. It was a very emotional moment for me, for I had been dreading it for months…and then to see it delayed filled me with the sort of joy I imagine Abraham must have felt when God stayed his hand with Isaac.”

    Is it possible that the storm will pass us by much like the Category 5 hurricane Patricia did to the Mexican coast? I do wish to see the miracle done through Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe and the conversion of Muslims to Christians and the healing of the Christian church with our Protestant and Orthodox brothers as mentioned before on this blog.

    God is great – all the time


    • charliej373 says:

      We are already IN the Storm. It just hasn’t reached its fullness yet. And if it does not, we would be doomed. The Storm IS the divine chemotherapy for the cancer that has infected society. Participate in the Rescue.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Anne says:

        Thank you Charlie….. It can be so hard to accurately express…. And all readers are coming from different stances too! So we see how limited we all are …. Our human language can help…. And confuse!
        I like your comment……”divine chemotherapy”.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Patricia says:

        more storm news: Islamic’s take claim for downing Russian plane with 220 vacationers. Maybe this is the opening of the all out war.


      • Kim sevier says:

        That truly gives me nightmares. That we will not get to the fullness of the storm because I know in my heart we would be doomed. But then I remember Our Lord will not abandon us.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Mack says:

    I’m very grateful that God saw fit to delay the fullness of the Storm so it didn’t happen 3 years ago. That is a big grace! I praise him for it. At the same time, I understand what Charlie means that the Storm is like chemotherapy. So while I am not looking forward to the trials it will bring, I am looking forward to the healing it will bring as a result of those trials. Every day brings a new outrage (like the statue dedicated to the satan in Detroit), and when I hear of those things now I have hope because soon they will be gone.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Anne says:

    Last night …. Before reading this…… I thought how I must take advantage of this time of grace and mercy. It is precious. may The Lord pour down graces on all here to help us ……. he still has so much to do in me. I needed the extra time…. And each day now as well. the extra time is Mercy in action.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. JeanE says:

    How beautiful Charlie. What an incredible lesson and gift and hope for all. I wonder if you have any idea whatsoever what you have done here for all of us…what you are teaching us about Obedience and Humility and ultimately Love and Mercy! To do and say what you have just done and said? That is quite a cross to bear. God Bless you- you have a heart filled with Christ!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. luvmercy5775 says:

    I’m sharing this tribute because of the testimony which concludes with the words, “the storm saved us.” Powerful analogy of what we, too, seemingly are facing. As it took place, I’m sure many did not appreciate it’s intensity. But without it, the outcome would have been far worse.

    A Tribute to Lance Lambert, 1931-2015

    FRIDAY, 30 OCTOBER 2015
    LATEST UPDATES CIJ XXIV: Replacement Theology (Part 2): The Teaching of the ‘Church Fathers’ – Friday, 30 October 2015 05:10

    A Tribute to Lance Lambert, 1931-2015
    Frances Tuesday, 26 May 2015 font size Print Email

    A Tribute by the Revd Dr Clifford Hill
    Lance Lambert has had anoutstanding ministry of huge significance for relationships between Jews and Christians. His father was a member of an aristocratic family in Italy but as a Jew, he feared for his family when Mussolini joined forces with Hitler. He sent his wife and two children to England, where she changed her name in case Hitler won the war and persecution reached these shores. As a Messianic believer, Lance was in a unique position in Jerusalem where he was accepted as a wise counsellor by many in leadership in Israel. He kept a kosher household so that his orthodox friends would always feel comfortable in his home.

    Lance Lambert has had an outstanding ministry of huge significance for relationships between Jews and Christians.”

    I’ve known Lance since the days of his ministry at Halford House in the Richmond area of London back in the 1970s in the early days of the Charismatic Movement, when he was already an established leader. His ministry at Halford House was always biblical and even in those days showed his interest in the Hebraic roots of the Christian faith – which was long before he made Aliyah to Israel. He also had a considerable interest in the prophetic ministry which grew out of his love for the prophets of ancient Israel and their role in the history of the nation.

    Journey to Faith
    After he settled in Jerusalem, my wife and I often spent time with him in his home on our visits to Israel. He talked about his family and how his father was arrested and sent to Auschwitz. They never heard from him again. His mother rarely spoke about their Jewish family background. Then one day, there was a tent mission near their home and Lance’s sister went with some friends and responded to the call for salvation. She came home full of it and Lance’s mother reacted strongly, forbidding her to go again. Lance was so intrigued by his mother’s reaction that he went to the mission the following day and he also responded to the gospel which was the beginning of his Christian life. It was only after this that he learned about his Jewish past and it wasn’t really until he was pastoring the church in Richmond that he began to take it a particular interest in his family history.

    Lance’s ministry was always biblical, and even in its early days showed his interest in the Hebraic roots of the Christian faith.”

    His home in West Jerusalem (near the Windmill) was full of antiques and I remember over the stairs there was a wall hanging that he said was of great historical interest and was of the same era as the Turin Shroud. Having a conversation with Lance in his home was usually in competition with two very noisy parrots but it was always worthwhile to listen to his scholarship and to benefit from his great knowledge of Israel and the contemporary Middle East.

    A Word about Syria
    He lived in the area where most of the ruling class of Israeli politicians and businessmen lived, so he knew most members of the Cabinet and he was always well-informed on contemporary issues. On one occasion my wife and I were enjoying a Shabbat meal at his table and I told him that I’d had a strong word of warning which I believed to be from the Lord that there was an imminent attack coming from Syria within a few days. It was Friday 13 April 1984, which was just prior to Passover. It was not long after the bombing of the American Embassy in Beirut and most Western forces were being withdrawn from Lebanon, leaving Syria the dominant force in the Middle East.

    Lance thought it highly unlikely, as there was no special alert and Israeli military intelligence was usually very efficient. We returned to England the following day and we listened to every news bulletin over the next day or two but there was no incident, so we concluded that I must have been mistaken in the word that I thought I had heard. But a month later Lance came to London and telephoned asking me to meet him. He sounded excited and I arranged to go to Richmond the next day. This is the remarkable story he told me.

    Early on the Saturday morning, Lance called to see one of his neighbours who was theMinister of Defence in the Government, who dismissed the suggestion of an impending attack from Syria but promised to check with the military. Two hours later he came to Lance’s house and began asking numerous questions about me; who I worked for and questions about my background. The Minister was convinced that I must have high-level contacts in Syria as satellite information revealed the massing of military forces in southern Syria moving towards the Golan Heights with an imminent invasion possible. Within hours Israel was on full military alert so Lance began calling Messianic leaders inviting them to meet in his home on Sunday afternoon. They concluded that if God had revealed this to them they should do something about it.

    Saved in the Storm
    They began a time of fervent intercession for the protection of Israel. By 6 o’clock that Sunday evening a storm swept across the land and struck Jerusalem with hurricane-force winds and torrential rain. Storms in Israel at that time of year are very unusual and this was a storm of great intensity. Lance said the noise was so great that they had to shout to hear each other praying and he expected a tree in the yard to come crashing through the window at any moment. The storm continued right through Monday 16 April and through to Tuesday 17, covering the whole of Israel, southern Lebanon, southern Syria and parts of Jordan.

    On Wednesday 18 Lance met the Minister, who quietly said “Lance, the storm saved us”. He reported that intelligence indicated that there was to have been a missile attack followed by a full-scale assault by tanks and troops, but the ground was so soft that heavy armoured vehicles would not have been able to make progress. Once the surprise element was lost the planned assault had been cancelled. He also told Lance that Israeli intelligence had been checking his friend in London but that so far they had been unable to identify my source of information! Lance thought that was hugely funny and he said that he hoped they would soon find out.

    Lance was wise, generous and loving. He will be greatly missed for the hugely influential ministry that he exercised.”

    This incident firmly established my friendship with Lance. I learned a lot from him: he waswise, generous and loving and he will be greatly missed for the hugely influential ministry that he exercised. After that incident in 1984, Lance gladly agreed to be one of the leaders of the prophetic gatherings at Mt Carmel and in Jerusalem, some two years later in 1986. He played an important part in both these meetings. At Carmel he received an important prophecy which is still quoted today (click here for a full transcript). It spoke of the shaking of the nations which he believed began with the First World War and was about to escalate in line with the prophecy of Haggai 2 and Hebrews 12 and the warnings that Jesus gave concerning the end times.

    As a Messianic Jew, Lance was in a unique position as a bridge between Christians and Jews in Israel. He was a man with a mission, raised by God at a special time in history. He was surely a forerunner of what St Paul in Ephesians describes as “the one new man” –fully accepted by both Jew and Gentile – a very precious brother.

    Long may his influence continue!

    Liked by 8 people

  9. Teri says:

    Hi, Charlie.

    Thank you for your obedience. My we all pray for the grace to be obedient in taking the next right step. I was wondering what you thought of the dedication of 2016 as the Year of Mercy by Pope Francis.

    Thank you and blessings,


  10. Doug says:

    I love God’s mercy and that most prophesy is not fatalistic and that our response can change his heart.


  11. little one says:

    “it was the growing prayers and return to the faith of many throughout the world – and God’s extravagant mercy – that spared us from the full onset of the Storm then.”
    Your comment struck me as a consolation to all those who pray… that our prayers make a difference. That God listens and responds with Great Mercy! Our prayers are answered in His time and not ours. He is a loving Father who wants to grant all of us Mercy… Thank you for your obedience Charlie and for relaying this experience. We can all learn from your experiences and learn how to make the next right choice in our own lives. A question persists in my mind, when is your next trip up the mountain? Praise God always and everywhere!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Anne says:

    So if the rescue is late 2017 and fullness should have started in mid 2012……we have even spared much time of fullness….. What Mercy!
    It highlights my awareness of how each day draws nearer to fullness and each day doors are still open.Then…… Soon in year of Mercy doors will be literally opened everywhere. Literally!!so a moment of decision draws near.

    I sense God is trying to make the call back so very obvious……. Very obvious! Because if 2017 is correct the time for the crossing back to Faith and Truth is shrinking rapidly.
    Is year of Mercy the last bugle call? Seems so.

    Liked by 2 people

    • charliej373 says:

      Actually, I was ecstatic that Pope Francis declared the Year of Mercy. I have deeply dreaded the fullness of the Storm not because of its terrors, but because it will be so difficult for people to come back over from where they have settled once the Storm is fully engaged. I think that this is another example of God’s extravagant mercy – keeping the door open a little longer even after the Storm is fully engaged. But oh, it will go hard, indeed, for those who have not repented by the time the Year of Mercy closes – for then there is only justice until the Rescue.

      Liked by 3 people

      • NancyA says:

        This is why I am trying to make a BIG deal (well, it IS a big deal; I am simply trying to show what a big deal it is) of the Jubilee Year of Mercy. People must hear of it, and be informed as to what it means and how to draw close and take advantage of the graces that Jubilee brings. We need to spread the word and explain it to all.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Beckita says:

        This is interesting to me, Charlie. I have been pondering and praying much for the souls of those who are resisting and will continue to resist repenting because Our Lady of Fatima said: “Pray, pray much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray and make sacrifices for them.” I know there are many who have responded to our Mother’s plea. I cannot even count the number of rosaries my homebound grandmother prayed in her lifetime while offering the sufferings of her disability in reparation for souls.

        Through the past summer, when I went about the task of reading your previously posted articles, I was deeply affected by your piece: Modern Day Prophecy. I could clearly see Our Lady’s Triumph had begun with every soul who returned and/or was in the process of returning to Her Son.

        Still, intuitively, I have sensed there will be a dramatic moment when we will experience seeing our souls in the Light of God, as He sees them, thereby making a “last call,” if you will, providing a very last opportunity of Mercy before Justice ensues and Our Lady, miraculously and visibly, rescues us.

        In the end, whatever actually transpires will come from Pure Love and God’s Justice is the very fiber of His Mercy. I am confident Heaven will have bent over backwards to convert and save every last soul but there is never coercion. We are free to choose. Still, human free will is a mystery and the heartfelt words of our Mother haunt this maternal heart: “Pray, pray much and make sacrifices for sinners, for many souls go to hell because they have no one to pray and make sacrifices for them.”

        Liked by 4 people

  13. Zig says:


    I am of the opinion that this story is not over yet and that we are still moving forward towards its culmination. Karol Wojtyla did what he could to move Fatima forward, but various circumstances prevented him from fulfilling the specific request made by Our Lady.

    As evidence for my position, I submit the following url and MMP references. (Please note: the various individuals and institutions cited have their specific limitations, but in regard to THIS particular aspect of Fatima, they are notable for their clarity.)

    MMP 287, 437, 539, 594, 604 (To the Priests Our Lady’s Beloved Sons; The Marian Movement of Priests)

    I ask you to join me to continue praying for the Triumph of the Immaculate Heart and the Era of Peace.


    • YongDuk says:


      Please know my concern over the Status of Fr Nicholas Gruner and his faculties being suspended and yet continuing to have acted as a Priest.

      (This is in fact the convincing moment for me in regards to definitively warning my mother about LttW [Locutions to the World].)

      Zig, obedience to proper authorities is what Charlie wrote about above. Fr. Gruner acted in disobedience and caused public scandal. Any revocation of his suspended status and that he would then be acting as a Priest with Faculties would have been made public by the Vatican given the public nature of his disobedience and the controversy surrounding him and his apostolate.

      Please be careful!

      Ponder Hebrews 5


      Liked by 2 people

    • Beckita says:

      Zig, If you haven’t yet had the opportunity to do so, you can search Consecration of Russia on Charlie’s site here and you will find Charlie’s own article as well as a piece posted by Charlie from William Sockey from the World Apostolate of Fatima.

      YD, thank you for the reminder about Fr. Gruner’s status.


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