Navigating the Valley of Death

Frederic Edwin Church - Christian on the Borders of the _Valley of the Shadow of Death__ Pilgrim_s Progress

Fredric Church – Pilgrim’s Progress

By Charlie Johnston

23rd Psalm

The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

I am suddenly inundated with messages asking me whether it is safe to travel to such and such a place at such and such a time. My counsel on this has remained consistent since I started this site: use normal prudence, live your life, and trust God.

I have said that the primary reason we got to this situation is because we think we are sufficient to ourselves. It is a contradiction to decide you are going to use spiritual information to devise a temporal plan to escape the consequences we all face. I understand the instinct, for I often did it when I was scared enough. And with all the information I have been given, every time I used this sort of information to try to protect myself, the Lord sharply rebuked me. I learned. The last time I failed in this was in 1996.

There was a time a decade ago when both my son and a brother of mine were in what I knew would be site of a disaster. Every nerve in my body wanted to warn them to get out, but I did not, for I knew to give them special warning might get them injured or killed. I trusted God. The trust was well placed.

If you are frantically trying to come up with a plan to protect yourself beyond normal prudence, you do not trust enough yet…and God will have to give you special attention. Use normal prudence, live your life, and trust God. He knows where you are and what you need.

My travel arrangements have not changed. I will keep doing what I am doing until I can’t any more – and then will do whatever comes next. God knows where I will be, what I will need, and what He will want of me. I will figure it out when I get there.

The only safe way to traverse the valley of death is to walk with confidence straight down the middle, trusting that the Lord really is your shepherd.

***

When I was in Las Vegas, I asked my host to drive me down the strip just once. I figured since I was there, I ought to see it that once. Also, I never really know how I am going to react to a city until I am there, regardless of what I have read about it.las_vegas_strip_at_night_-_usa_concierge_services

I was largely indifferent…neither repulsed nor enthused…though I did feel a strange feeling of sadness. I had to ponder about what it was that made me so. After a bit, I realized that it all felt impoverished to me, which was a strange reaction. I pondered that for a while and, suddenly, it came clear. Las Vegas is all gilding and no lily. It IS impoverished – and it is a standing metaphor for what our culture has become: all gilding and no lily. There is a replica of the pyramids there, but it is not a pyramid. There is a replica of the Eiffel Tower, but it is not the Eiffel Tower. There are all sorts of replicas that seek to imitate triumphs elsewhere with added glitz. All gilding, no lily. People yearn for the lily.

***

In early August, I will attend the St. Thomas Aquinas Society’s annual conference in Colorado Springs. This year’s theme is “Jesus, King of All Nations.” It runs from August 4-7. I will not be speaking there, but I have become friends with the woman who puts it on every year, Therese Lorentz. There is no charge for the conference – and they always have over a thousand there. She raises the money for it throughout the year. She runs a huge silent auction which helps fund the conference.

It is a marvelous conference. I will be in and out that weekend, but I will be hanging around. Hope to see you there.

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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532 Responses to Navigating the Valley of Death

  1. An update on the South China Sea tensions recorded before the UN vote this week, but still valid.

    Liked by 3 people

    • And a look at China and India’s situation.

      Liked by 4 people

    • jwjohn says:

      Breaking news attack in Nice,France kills over 30 people, also smoke coming from the Eiffel Tower, pictured above, check out Infowars for the latest coverage.

      Like

    • Here’s an update from China Uncensored on that UN ruling. I get the feeling I’m alone in enjoying these videos, well anyway…I need a good laugh despite the fact that this same China will bring many tears to the world.

      Liked by 7 people

      • charliej373 says:

        That it will, Patrick. That it will.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Snowy Owl says:

        Patrick, you’re not alone…it’s just that it’s easier to live each moment of the day focusing on God and Heaven and TNRS right in our day then on this stuff. It’s distracting for me and annoying (not what you posted but the way the world is always posturing and threatening war…and how it NEVER ENDS) I am tired to death of it. Plus I won’t even pretend I understand any of it! You know those books…the ones that say The *whatever the subject is* for Dummies- well, I can’t even understand those! Haha.
        Deer tried to explain the Coup happening in Turkey…my ears heard coup and my mind thought, oh I miss my chicken coop…it’s hopeless (for me). 🙂

        Liked by 9 people

        • I’m sad the coup in Turkey failed (liberal BBC said, “No, Erdogan won’t grab more power” while Sky News said, “Now Erdogan WILL grab more power.” Dictators will do what they always do — grab more power).

          The world is POLARIZED: the people of the US are split, the U.K. is split, France is split, Germany is split, Turkey is split, and the Chinese people are oppressed while their govt rattles sabers.

          As a fan of history, I do find this unfolding saga fascinating, but you’re right Snowy, man’s behavior of posturing and threatening is annoying too. But it will end eventually…

          Liked by 7 people

          • Oops. Sorry, Charlie. I didn’t mean to have you delete my corny turkey coup snippet 🦃which provided a segue into the politics. I don’t know what I was thinking when I changed the word from “groan” to “delete.” It was before my coffee. Good to know that you do read our submissions. It’s just fine without it, tho. 🙂

            Liked by 2 people

          • charliej373 says:

            I really didn’t want to delete it…but figured that is what you asked for. It was amusing.

            Liked by 2 people

      • Linda says:

        Not alone patrick of sd..im sharing them om my wall and a catholic closed group too😇

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Linda says:

    So stoked.. Got my new Prayet of Mitaculous Trust holy cards yesterday.. I ordered 100.. and they sent me a bunch of free items too…Holy book marks..other holy cards.. and TNRSSticker for my car😊

    Liked by 11 people

  3. SanSan says:

    Watching your Burmingham video that I picked up at your talk in Marin. I’ve seen it before and have read so much here for so long. But I really keep picking up more and more.

    I just sent out to everyone on my email list: http://www.charliejohnson.org

    I pray that those who need to move forward, come here and start to read and learn.

    Thank you Charlie. God bless you!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. diane says:

    What a gathering of information you all have – I love this site. Remember that our Lord gives to us as much as He wants, to who He wants and when He wants. We can pray that we will want what He wants, because He wants it and until He wants it. Our way is not always in our own power, that power belongs to God to give and to console when He wants, as much as He wants and to whom He wants in the manner which it shall please Him and nothing more (from the Imitation of Christ, Book III, chapter VII). Charlie just said yes, give me what you want me to have to fulfill Your Will, not my own. I’m not sure too many of us would say Yes to what Charlie was asked. I shudder to think of how I would breakdown the minute I met with conflict, so we are blessed indeed to live in these times to see someone as meek and humble as Charlie to serve our Lord in such as enormous way. Because Charlie seems like such a likable everyday guy, nothing frightening about him, but everything frightening about what he is asked to do. If I had not idea who Charlie was and I saw him in a group of people, I would not hesitate to approach him and begin a conversation, he is not intimidating at all. There are many people I would not approach because they are too boastful and too arrogant, Charlie does not reflect any of that. Just because he is so matter of fact and so down to earth makes this all the more believable. So again, I constantly say, oh, I’m not commenting anymore because there is nothing more to say, but dog gone it, when the spirit moves you …well you all know what I mean. Love. I do. Diane

    Liked by 12 people

  5. Patricia says:

    This comment pertains more to the thoughts posted yesterday about God speaking to us. A few minutes ago, as I was catching up on these comments from yesterday, my mom called to ask how the weather was where I am at the moment which is very northern New England. She had just heard on Boston tv that the northern parts of NE would be subject to severe thunder storms. I could see them coming in the distance and told her so but that she should not worry.
    So I returned to my seat to finish reading the comments and listening to Fox News on the radio via Sirrus. It started to get very very dark and the wind picked up in a way that is not particularly normal around here. I continued to read. Then, out of the blue, the radio stopped and my Rosary CD popped out of the multi CD player which sits under my radio.
    Now that is not normal. I do not think it has ever done that before. So I did what was the next right step. I pushed it back in and prayed the rosary. And that is how I think God talks to us or at least to me.
    The storm went through, no damage here. No loss of electricity. But I hear now on the back on again Sirrus that Nice, France has lost a great number of lives through a terrorist attack. Horrible, horrible. God help us.

    Liked by 10 people

    • Barb421 says:

      years ago, I was praying the rosary in the car while my husband was driving on a trip we took to DC, passing through New Jersey, I had my eyes closed for a long time while I prayed, and this was very unfamiliar territory for us, I was sad over some tough times my son was going thorough and my daughter too with leaving her husband… I opened my eyes up and glanced off to the side of the road at the exact moment that we passed a statue of our blessed Mother, right there along the highway, surrounded by nothing but trees!, The timing was uncanny, I smiled, feeling reassurance from our sweet virgin Mary

      Liked by 9 people

      • Patricia says:

        Barb421,
        Great story. About 18 or so years years ago, I had to chaperone a child’s jr high ski trip. It happened to come at an extreme, difficult time in my life and the day we were to leave was part of the worst week of that time. I truly felt numb on the ride unable to focus and speak to the other moms and/or enjoy the kids. As the bus pulled into the ski area where we were to stay, I happened to glance up and saw that we were at Mt. Mary.

        Liked by 6 people

        • annieannie says:

          Years ago, I was visiting in Albany, Georgia. I was taking an early morning walk before the heat got too intense. I usually kept my eyes peeled for “interesting” sights. This day, I was completely lost in thought. (Although I did notice the chicken sitting in someone’s front yard.) I woke up and thought “gosh, I’m not paying attention at all.” I looked up and saw one of those roll-away signs with the blinking lights in front of a church. The sign said “If you’re looking for a sign from God,….here it is.” Here

          Liked by 4 people

  6. SanSan says:

    RIP innocent folks in Nice, France

    Liked by 8 people

  7. Mary says:

    Regarding the attack in Nice, my son heard about it and said do you think kids growing up now will just get used to these attacks happening every few days? He’s 17.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Audrey S. says:

      When I gasped at the news unfolding in front of my eyes yesterday, my 11 year old asked me what was wrong… I told him, with tears in my eyes, and he said, “Oh..that is sad… but it’s pretty much expected by now right? Like…that’s pretty normal, right?” Oh my heartbreak at that moment… I keep reminding myself that God is bringing us our mother soon to help us back on track and my children won’t always expect a world full of hatred.. for now, though, I weep at the thought of this world and my children thinking it’s normal…

      Liked by 5 people

    • Joe says:

      Leaving work yesterday, a coworker and I found out about the coup in Turkey. He goes (half joking) “Is the end of the world happening or what?” Took so much of me to not throw up on him all Charlie has talked about…

      Liked by 1 person

  8. nicky says:

    Praying for everyone in Nice. The storm continues to pick up momentum. May we all stay close to Jesus ‘ merciful heart. Just starting Fr. Gaitly’s 33 Divine Mercy Consecration. Will need all the help I can to grow in trust. God bless you all!

    Liked by 8 people

  9. dianebelvs says:

    Praying for all those killed and injured in France tonight.

    Liked by 7 people

  10. C says:

    I just read an interview with Dr. Ben Carson during which he suggested that the 2016 election may not occur at all because the Obama administration will suspend elections by enforcing martial law. I know Charlie has mentioned the election will not take place and that Obama will not “finish” his term. Is it possible that that means he will continue rather than resign or be removed?

    http://www.commdiginews.com/politics-2/ben-carson-might-obama-cancel-the-2016-election-28523/

    Liked by 1 person

    • charliej373 says:

      God has a plan for restoration. Everybody else’s plans amount to little more than an anthill when the tornado of God comes through.

      Liked by 15 people

      • Beckita says:

        ALL Glory to God!

        Liked by 5 people

      • Another Karen says:

        Charlie,
        Your remarkable consistency, and calm resignation of what will be, will be, is tremendously comforting. No matter how many times – or ways – someone asks you about future events, you always find an ever so nice way to say that it doesn’t matter because God’s got it covered and it is his plan that counts. I aspire to be like that… I’m closer, but no cigar yet!

        Liked by 10 people

        • C says:

          I place all my trust in God, but when somebody claims that angels, Mary, and Jesus have spoken to him about very specific events (e.g. No election, Obama not finishing term, North Korea, China, the rescue, etc.) it is not unreasonable to ask that person about some possibilities. I find it interesting that every time somebody asks a specific question on this forum it is explained to them that it is not about specifics but to just trust. This is after all the specifics mentioned above. On a side note I genuinely would like to know why much of the Storm has a U.S. focus. For instance I read the other day that before the Rescue there must be a restoration to “constitutional” order? That seems to be a very specific prerequisite that is an entirely American issue. Is the Storm and the Rescue only to be understood through U.S. lenses?

          Like

          • charliej373 says:

            Craig, I have written about that before. The major three actors in this before it finishes are the US, Russia, and China. But the Storm comes to the whole world.

            I appreciate your concern, but I have been pretty specific about a few things and the larger sweep of things. After LttW collapsed last year, I heard from many encouraging me to take her place in giving all sorts of detail and regular political commentary. Not interested. Authentic prophecy is not fortune-telling…and details of what is going to happen are not nearly as important as what we are called to do whatever happens. That is what I emphasize; it is what I am supposed to emphasize. I understand that that does not satisfy everyone. But that is what I do. I understand why you might look elsewhere with the dissatisfaction – but in having to choose between doing it in a way you find reasonable and the way those angels and heavenly beings have trained me to do it, I will just bumble along as I have been. I am far less interested in answering questions on details than I am in changing mindsets on how to approach all.

            Liked by 16 people

          • Another Karen says:

            C,

            I apologize for leading you to believe that my comment was directed at you. It was not, and I completely understand wanting a response with more meat. I have been there, and still find myself at times wanting more. It is not unreasonable to want specifics, but it just doesn’t apply to what Charlie is trying to do here. Believe me, I’m still trying to perfect just doing the simple right in front of me with total trust in God…..who knew the simple could be so complicated!
            What I meant to convey in my comment was that I find credibility in Charlie’s mission (and that it has been given by supernatural means) precisely because he has been consistent in his message without giving in to what the ever growing following often seeks in the way of guidance…..specifics. He always has amazing patience with all of us as he redirects us to the task at hand (though he can be a little scrappy at times!), and I’ve been following him for close to 2 years now.
            It’s all a learning curve, and I still have a ways to go, so again, my apologizes.
            God bless!

            Liked by 5 people

          • charliej373 says:

            Ha! I wouldn’t have survived if I wasn’t a bit of a scrapper, Karen!

            Liked by 4 people

          • Craig, you are right: it is not unreasonable to ask a person of authority, such as Charlie, about some possibilities. Lord knows I’ve done it.

            Will gaining a tiny bit of insight into the “focus” of this worldwide Storm or any details on say, China, help you and your family actually *weather* the Storm at the local level? Most likely not.

            Charlie’s work is ongoing. He is patiently and systematically telling us what he can about the Storm, even though some readers are anxious and less than patient, myself included.

            So stick with that perfect first part of your opening sentence: “I place all my trust in God.” Beautiful. That is music to God’s ears and pleases Him immensely, brother.

            “I place all my trust in God.” (and then sometimes I like to add, “…Please help my lack of trust.” because it’s easier said than done.)

            Liked by 5 people

          • Greg says:

            Craig: that is not how God works. One only needs to read the Bible to see how words like “soon,” might not be expressed in the way that we interpret them here on earth (Ex. read Rev 22:12). I myself am like you, mostly trusting in God, and keeping my heart beating in rhythm with the Church he gave us for our salvation. But at the same time, I keep tabs on those claiming to have heavenly encounters, giving us insight into the realities of eternity. Charlie here apparently has one mission, and it is limited to the focus he is given. Others, it seems, have their own mission, with their own focus. I believe wholeheartedly in all the approved apparitions of the Church, but there are also those still to be judged that might all be oriented towards the same end. For example there are apparently 10 secrets to be revealed by the seers of Medjugorje. Will those coincide with Charlie’s timetable? Well we’ll see. There is Luz de Maria, who gives a message out every week or so, clearly expressing the global focus you are interested in. Is she a prophet? Well we’ll see, but she has nailed quite a few things already, for example that terror was not finished with France after the first hit, among others. Either way, we need to keep our focus proper: we need to fall deeply in Love with the King, keep our Hopes up, our Faith strong,, our hearts clean and unsoiled, and know that in the end, Christ will be victorious. As stated during the third visit from Mary at Fatima, “in the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph.”

            Liked by 3 people

    • June1 says:

      I forgot where I found this but financial writer Bill Holter says the EXACT same thing! No election, martial law. Skip to 19:53: http://beforeitsnews.com/economy/2016/07/heads-up-must-listen-its-over-bill-holter-video-2839045.html
      And this is a secular interview!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Joe Crozier says:

    Today I had a new patient, a Maori grandmother who was accompanied by her 9 year old granddaughter. My desktop shows Mt Meeker in the snow and this got us talking about The Storm and the Rescue and the Angels – Charlie’s and Conchita’s – and the Tribulation and The Warning and The Miracle and even touched on the conditional Chastisement and the period of peace that would follow. The wee girl was a very bright, chatty soul but she quietened down as the story unfolded and paid close attention to all that was said. She was fascinated. Neither had heard about any of this before but the grandmother who was very spiritual said “Yes it must happen.” The wee girl looked at me with wisdom beyond her years in her eyes and said “When the two stars crash I will say “Joe told me about this.” Then she said “I believe everything you have told me.” They had the Aviso the Rescue and the Miracle to assure them of a brighter future and they were looking forward to it all even though they knew they would have to pass through the Storm. It all made perfect sense to them. I was blown away by their faith. I wonder what will happen on their next visit. I am sure when they saw the news tonight it only confirmed their faith in the necessity for God’s plan to unfold.

    Liked by 12 people

    • Beckita says:

      Beautiful story of witnessing to the Truth and Hope in God’s Plan, Joe.

      Liked by 3 people

    • jlynnbyrd says:

      Joe, that is precious. All children of God have more common ground than differences. My daughter Veronica traveled as a student ambassador to New Zealand and Australia and stayed with a Maori tribe family with the People to People program founded by Former President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
      “Granddad felt very strongly that everyday citizens of the world wanted peace and could attain it much more effectively without government interference or representation. Having seen the slow impact government had, he realized that world peace had to come from the soul of human nature and that governments could not dictate the human heart, only reflect it. Our organization is a form of proof that he was right. Nearly 60 years later, we are still working very hard to accomplish what he saw as the solution.”
      ~ Mary Jean Eisenhower, PTPI’s Chairman Emeritus

      Liked by 6 people

    • Joe, what a story! So many people awakening. May I be so trusting as to share like that.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. Esperanza says:

    Over the last month I have been greatly comforted by the 23rd Psalm. Having been a silent participant of this community for about a year, my thoughts and emotions on the “valley of death” in which we currently live have moved from those of fear to hope. I live with the hope of our Lord returning this evil infested world to one which is Christ centered. The future for my young family (my oldest child who will be a Senior in high school to my youngest just entering Kindergarten) without this storm and the promise of rescue is such an ugly future. Today’s massacre in France was heartbreaking. Knowing there are so many families–infants, children, mothers, grandmothers…who will return home from their festivities to a fragmented family is beyond tragic. And still there will be more…Oh, Immaculate Heart of Mother Mary cover us in your mantle. Praying for the repose of souls passed on in France today.
    Many blessings to all here who are a continued sign of hope to those of us following along silently.

    Liked by 16 people

  13. Mick says:

    Hey, y’all… a little birdie (well, a little Deer) told me that today is the birthday of our beloved Snowy Owl! Everybody, please wish her a happy and blessed day.

    Have a great one, Snowy; and don’t eat too many lemmings! (P.S. You know that saying about turnabout and fair play? Well, it’s payback time!) 🙂

    Liked by 5 people

  14. EllenChris says:

    I have just come back from a week in the Adirondacks — what a joy! I was reading TNRS on my phone, but I could not make any postings. This goes out to the lady somewhere back earlier in this thread who was worried about traveling in case things really broke loose. This is an Arabic story:

    Ali Habib Mansour was in the bazaar in Mecca when he overheard a conversation near him. A man said, “I recognize you, dark one — are you not Death, who recently came to take my uncle?” The other person replied, “Yes, I am Death.” The man said, “Who have you come to take today?” Death replied, “Today I am going to take Ali Habib Mansour.” As soon as Ali heard this, he ran to the city gate, hired a camel and rode as fast as he could away to Medina. Meanwhile, the other man and Death continued their conversation. “Yes,” said Death, “Today I have an appointment to take Ali Habib Mansour away with me in Medina.”

    Our lives are in God’s hands. We have nothing to fear. Wherever we are, He is with us. Many blessings to all.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Ah, Ellen Chris, I was reared near Buffalo and my family spent many summers camping in the Adirondacks — Saranac Lake, Old Forge, Lake Placid, and especially Rollins Pond.

      Where did you stay? Isn’t Upstate New York beautiful? I wouldn’t mind dying there at all.

      Liked by 2 people

      • EllenChris says:

        This time we were at Fourth Lake in the Fulton Chain. My husband and I lived in Saranac Lake at the end of the 80s. You have to be extremely tough to survive a High Peaks winter which begins at the end of September and lasts until May. I have seen snow flurries in July up there. North Country folks say: “Summer is great here — both weeks.” 🙂 We are down here in the Mohawk Valley now where it takes less than an hour to cross the Blue Line. We’ll be heading back up there before the end of the Summer. Love it a lot.

        Liked by 6 people

  15. On my journey says:

    mdg2007, I agree with you on the dangers of GMO foods and their effects on health in the USA. But, for perspective, less you believe Russia is a super healthy country, I know that because they do not have much in the way of anti-depressants in that country, many use vodka to treat their depression and fetal alcohol syndrome is much more common there, as many here, who have adopted children from Russia, have come to find out, in very devastating ways.

    Liked by 4 people

  16. Monica says:

    As events unfold, as tragedies happen as they have been in ever increasing frequency in so many places such as Nice, France the pain of the storm feels closer, stronger and additional sorrow presses on my heart. I pray for all of the victims, their families and friends, their countries, the world. We all have gathered here on this site as a community of God’s children to be an army of prayer warriors. With our prayers we seek to ask God to bring love, comfort, healing, peace, wisdom, strength not only to ourselves, but to the world. We ask God to give us all what we will need to endure these times. Today, I feel almost paralyzed by the sadness and grief I feel in my spirit at the loss of life of the innocent and the persecution of so many in the world. However, this is what the enemy wants…for us to feel paralyzed. Therefore, I will get up today and care for my family and take the next right step. God is telling us through Charlie and so many legitimate, approved apparitions of Our Lady such as at Fatima, that more sorrow and hardships are very likely coming. However, they are also telling us that there is hope. In the end there will be an era of peace, the triumph of Mary’s Immaculate Heart. They are telling us that how we get there is to pray, to trust God and do what He asks of us to show love and bring about Jesus’ words from the Our Father…“Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven…”. We have joined together to build up the body of Christ by supporting each other with our prayers and words so that we know there are others out there who feel as we do and can read the signs of the times by God’s grace and mercy. You all offer prayers, advice, reflections, insights, comfort and humor. Thank you for that Charlie and fellow squirrels. As you read this if you feel moved by the Holy Spirit to do so, please say an Our Father and a Hail Mary for each other, the innocent who have lost their life, the persecuted, for peace and the Blessed Mother’s intentions. Many blessings, Monica

    Liked by 13 people

  17. SanSan says:

    Charlie always speaks of “prudence” when traveling…….Patrick Madrid brought up that it would be more prudent right now to cancel World Youth Day in Poland……I tend to agree…….600K+ youth and the Pope…….a mighty target for ISIS.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Joj says:

      Prudence is making right choices all things considered. Sometimes that requires throwing caution to the wind and going out to proclaim Christ despite the devil and his minions. Onward Christian soldiers!

      Liked by 5 people

      • SanSan says:

        hmmm, I don’t think my granddaughters need to be put in harms way to proclaim Christ. Our Lord gave us right reason, for a reason. Our Lord was proclaimed for centuries before a WYD. And He will be proclaimed with or without WYD.

        Liked by 3 people

        • charliej373 says:

          I certainly would respect either choice. Events in Europe seem out of control these days. Staying away until they get under control falls under my understanding of normal prudence. On the other hand, going without fear is an act of faith, too. This is something I certainly think we can each choose for ourselves honorably and with respect for how others may choose differently.

          Liked by 10 people

          • moreen67 says:

            Charlie things are moving geopolitically in break neck fashion…..I’ll be curious about what the result of this military coup in Turkey will be.

            Liked by 3 people

          • TTT says:

            I was not sure where to post this because it relates to this conversation with SanSan and Joj and also conversations between mike and Katherine and Charlie on July 13th… (Will anyone even see it since it is posted several days late?)
            I have been poring over all posts about travel and “normal prudence.” My daughter is scheduled for a semester abroad in Spain this fall. She and my husband planned it, and my vote was “no” from the start; that kind of thing really scares me even in the best of times. Though I have been trying for months (for her sake) to get on board with the idea, I’ve always been extremely anxious about the idea of her being an ocean away, and not sure I could actually let her go (now waking up in the middle of the night terrified as the departure date approaches). On top of all that, now terrorist attacks are increasing in frequency, ISIS has specifically threatened Spain (which is on high terror alert), and yesterday, when listening to the Q&As from a couple of Charlie’s April talks, I realized that if there is no election or inauguration, that means things will have unraveled very badly by Nov or Dec, while she would still be away. I am now in a state of absolute terror and want to cancel her trip. Is that “normal prudence” or would I be trying to outsmart God (as mike was warned) so that worse might happen to her if I change her plans to keep her closer to home? I don’t imagine that my family can escape the storm, but I don’t want to take unnecessary risks with her life either.
            I am having a terrible time trying to discern the right thing to do.

            Liked by 1 person

          • charliej373 says:

            Given the situation in Europe right now, people can certainly make a normally prudential decision to stay away completely legitimately. I do not suggest that anyone MUST go into serious danger zones that we know, from normal means, to be serious danger zones. I only mean not to make decisions based on what one thinks to be inside information. One can make a legitimate case, either way on this, from perfectly normal prudence.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Doug says:

            Well TTT, I do not have a magic answer for you. This is an opportunity to exercise your trust muscles either way. I will pray. God bless you!

            Liked by 2 people

          • Beckita says:

            Praying for your discernment, TTT. May you be immersed in Christ’s Peace as you do so.

            Liked by 1 person

          • jlynnbyrd says:

            TTT, my daughter Veronica traveled in 5 continents as a PTP Student Ambassador. Just months after 9-11 she was 12 years old and her first trip to Europe included stops in Paris, which at the time had reported active Al-Qaeda cells. I trusted and prayed. While she was in New Zealand, there was a terrorist attack in the South Pacific. I trusted and prayed. Her last scheduled trip was in 2007 to Morocco which the organization cancelled as the U.S. States Department declared that region unsafe to travel in for Americans. I trusted and prayed. She was instead blessed to have attended the 43rd Presidential Inauguration.
            I took to heart the fact that if we fear, the terrorists win, and I talked at length to our pastor about it. We are at a new level of terror in this day and age and I do not know if what I shared will help in any way. Please know that I have you and your beloved covered in prayer no matter what you decide.

            Liked by 4 people

          • Joj says:

            TTT, as a parent, I would say that if she us over 18 it should be her decision. Make it really clear to her and her father what your concerns are, and then put it in God’s hands. And pray, pray, pray.

            Liked by 3 people

          • Mick says:

            Welcome to the TNRS family, TTT. Here is my prayer for you: Dear Lord, if TTT is wrong about this, then please change her mind; if her husband and daughter are wrong about this, then please change their minds.

            Liked by 3 people

        • Joj says:

          Absolutely, Sansan. God gives you what you need to make the best choice for your own. I was referring to cancelling the whole thing.

          I will say however, that while many would not put their children in harm’s way physically, they don’t bat an eyelash about putting them in circumstances most dangerous to their souls. Suffering is not an evil absolutely, but mortal sin is. (I know you worry about their souls, too!)

          I would not feel comfortable sending my kids overseas, either.

          Liked by 6 people

          • SanSan says:

            I’m praying that the Pope postpones WYD this year. He has no fear to travel, but I’m sure he will not want others put in harms way because he is the target of ISIS

            Liked by 2 people

          • YongDuk says:

            Wut?!

            to be a Martyr!

            Liked by 2 people

          • Well, I’m sure Pope Francis is quite prepared to be a martyr, but I imagine most kids at WYD would rather not — given the choice, YD! But I like your dark (heavenly?) humor.

            While talking about protecting the parishioners of our church from terrorists, my priest and I agreed there was no better or glorious place to be martyred than before the Blessed Sacrament.

            Liked by 4 people

          • joj says:

            “This [tapping himself] is not the stuff of which martyrs are made.”. S. Thomas More, Man for All Seasons

            I’m with St. Thomas More! 🙂

            Liked by 1 person

  18. dianebelvs says:

    Charlie, I would like to get your thoughts on a discussion my husband and I were having this morning as we were discussing the terror attack in Nice last night. My husband thinks that if a terrorist believes that his god is asking him to destroy all the infidels and the terrorist truly believes that what he is doing is a good thing, that he can walk right into Heaven when he dies. What’s your take on that?

    Liked by 4 people

    • charliej373 says:

      I appreciate your husband’s pondering of the subject, Diane, but he has slipped into a from of relativism. Catholics – and all authentic Christians – believe that faith and reason march hand in hand and augment each other. It is not faith or reason, but faith and reason.

      At the cabin I go to to rest, there is a wood-burning stove to heat it in winter. Let us consider the stove itself as reason…and the fire as faith. The stove without firs is just a cold hunk of metal. Fire outside of the stove will consume everything in its path – horribly destructive. But fire contained and directed from the confines of the stove brings light and life to all.

      If your husband’s thoughts were correct, then every serial killer who actually believed he was doing good would be guaranteed heaven. Most of history’s great monsters, Hitler, Pol Pot, would be guaranteed heaven. But they are not. Your husband has begun a good journey of thought. He has gone beyond believing that following a simple set of rules is enough…knowing that a stove without fire is just a cold hunk of metal…but he has further to go yet. Faith unconstrained by reason and regard for the other is a destructive, consuming force.

      Liked by 21 people

      • Never saw the relationship between the two like that. I’ll be chewing on that morsel for a while, Charlie. Thanks!

        Liked by 6 people

      • EllenChris says:

        Dear Dianebelvs: Good and Evil are objective realities in themselves, independent of our personal subjective attitudes toward them. An evil act is *intrinsically* evil no matter how I feel about it. In moral theology, this is called by the fancy name of “ontological norms.” That is, no matter what the motive or attitude or belief or outcome, moral evil is evil in and of itself. If you have no other choice than to kill someone in order to save the life of an innocent person, you may not be personally culpable in terms of incurring sin, but you have still committed an act that is intrinsically not good. If you are not aware of or able to understand the intrinsic evil of your action, your culpability may be diminished, but you have still committed an evil act. “I didn’t mean it” is not justification at all. And, there are real consequences for our actions. Committing evil acts damages and even breaks off our relationship with God. St. Paul puts it very plainly in one of his letters (can’t think of the citation just this minute): “People who do such things do *not* inherit the Kingdom of God.”

        The moral mess we are now in has been caused, in large part, by the teaching of “moral relativism”: that it only matters how an individual thinks or feels about something subjectively in their own situation. The orthodox Christian Faith, as we have received it from our Lord Jesus through His Apostles, in continuity with the Covenant of Sinai, has always authentically taught the objective reality of good and evil. Too many teachers of moral relativism have been able to spread their incorrect conceptions as though they were the teachings of the Church, and these have been widely accepted. At this time comparatively few people are able to understand the difference any more because of generations of bad teaching. And so they involve themselves with real moral evil which seriously damages their souls, or even causes them to be lost. Unless they woke up and repented just before their own deaths, these murderers have consigned themselves to hell. God simply ratifies the choice to do evil that they have made, and the consequences follow.

        We want everyone to just go to heaven no matter what. This is called “universalism,” and it is a deadly heresy.

        Liked by 10 people

      • dianebelvs says:

        Thank you Charlie, your answer makes sense. I’ll share that with my husband. Safe travels to you this weekend!

        Liked by 2 people

    • Joj says:

      The god one serves is the god who will reward. Let the terrorist’s god reward his followers in the only way he can. Fleeting pleasure and eternal fire.

      But may the true God have mercy on their souls and save them from the devil’s lies. He has already put the truth in our hearts by the Natural Law.

      Liked by 3 people

    • Mack says:

      St Thomas explains that an effect of sin is “the loss of the light of reason, and consequently of divine wisdom in man, since such light is a certain participation of the divine wisdom….. every evil is ignorance.” He goes on to say that Christ rescues us from this. (Commentary on Hebrews)
      There is a natural law that tells us in our hearts that killing innocents is wrong. For a person to convince himself otherwise, he has fallen into some sin that distorts his reason and he is culpable for this. Of course only God can judge how culpable the person is, but this kind of error does not absolve a person of guilt. Hopefully God has found a way to save them, but they would likely have to go through a rigorous purgatory.

      Liked by 5 people

    • LL says:

      I don’t have the answer to your question. But I did have another thought to ponder. Yes, these terrorists may really believe they are doing God’s will but I think that who they truly are will matter when they die. I have heard a description of purgatory as a place where we go where yes our sins are burned away, but if you think deeper it is a place where our will is conformed to God’s true will. Where all of our mis-perceptions are burned away. In heaven only God’s will exists and everyone in Heaven rejoices in it. So, my point is, when these terrorists die and are confronted with God’s true will, someone who truly loved God would shrink in horror from their sins but still cry out to God in sorrow and asking for mercy. Someone who really was only doing something for themselves would basically become angry at God- these are the people who “choose Hell” – it is their way even to the end.

      Liked by 4 people

  19. JudyM says:

    More upheaval. Looks like Turkey may be ousting Erdogen.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. milliac says:

    Hello all. I haven’t posted for a while, but doing my best to keep up with The posts and events. Sharing a song of hope. God of miracles come!

    Liked by 6 people

  21. Joseph J says:

    Its interesting that Nice was being used the past few weeks to film the sequel to the sadomasochistic book and movie phenomenon ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, while the band called Eagles of Death metal were playing the song Kiss the Devil at the Bataclan when the terrorist attacked. I just read how the terrorists horrifically tortured and mutilated their victims that night.

    Someone said recently that we have fallen into unconscious worship of the devil. We treat our entertainment fantasies as if they are divorced from real-life consequences, mere whimsy, but in fact our theatres and concert venues are places of spiritual activity, where we revel in evil while still believing that we are good. We excuse our lust for violence and perversion as art. Well our art is coming alive. We are reaping what we have sown.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Ella Cammina says:

      Yes, we are reveling in our nightmares and they will turn on us. I remember in one of the Narnia books a man was saved from the land where dreams come true, nightmares actually, and how horrific it was.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Agreed, Joseph. These venues open up the vulnerable participants to evil spiritual activity. The devil and demons may be invisible but we know they are very real, and many are foolishly and often unwittingly dancing with them.

      So, in my daily prayers, especially through the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, I beg God to have mercy on poor sinners and to convert their hearts.

      And maybe the lead singer, after the Storm, will convert and start a Christian band called ‘Eagles of Heaven’ and write a hit song called “Kiss the Pierced Hands of Jesus.”

      Liked by 4 people

  22. Mary Ann Parks says:

    Now and then I see or hear the word “tragedy” applied to acts of terror. I think we should use the word “atrocity.” A tragedy is something that cannot be helped or, in the Greek literary sense, something that is brought about by one’s own flaws.

    Liked by 11 people

  23. Tom says:

    Now a coup in Turkey and Matthew 24 comes to mind:

    “You will hear of wars and reports of wars; see that you are not alarmed, for these things must happen, but it will not yet be the end. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be famines and earthquakes from place to place. All these are the beginning of the labor pains.”

    Charlie, your familiar and true reply of “these things must come” is certainly coming into focus . . .

    One step at a time, people. God had a plan 🙂

    Liked by 6 people

    • charliej373 says:

      Lift up your heads, for your deliverance is at hand! But the people of God, coming through this terrible labor, will be born anew – and our children will live in a world that is Godly and joyful.

      Liked by 21 people

      • Beckita says:

        And the people of the Kingdom and the people of Heaven shall rise together, shall forever… and the people of the Kingdom and the people of Heaven shall rise together, shall rise forever and God shall rule!

        Liked by 8 people

      • Ella Cammina says:

        “a world that is Godly and joyful” – May it be! May it be ever so soon!

        Liked by 4 people

      • Ha…I’ve gotten the feeling, Charlie, that like a veteran child birther would to a first time expectant mother, you mercifully spare us of the “unpleasant” details of this labor, as in the end it doesn’t matter, for what JOY awaits around the bend. What matters is our mindset and how we deal with whatever may come, with trust and surrender. I know you are acting out of obedience to your instruction (as in…it’s really God’s mercy, not yours!) but I’m reminded sometimes of my common response of, “Yea, it hurts…but you’ll forget once you hold that baby!” to the question of how bad is labor really going to be. I obviously have pregnancy on the brain. Offering up my discomfort and fear in my final (hot summer) months of this pregnancy for the many intentions here. Come, Holy Spirit!

        Liked by 14 people

  24. Noah603 says:

    And now, ladies and gentlemen, demonstrating why he should probably keep his day job, here’s Noah603 with a very old joke that suddenly seems quite relevant:

    Question: Why is the height of the Storm like a waiter dropping a Thanksgiving dinner?

    Answer: Because it’s the downfall of Turkey, the overthrow of Greece, the destruction of China, and the despair of the Hungary!

    Thank you! Thank you! I’m here till Thursday! Try the veal!

    Liked by 23 people

  25. dianebelvs says:

    I flipped my daily calendar over today, and here is what I read: “I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.” (Louisa May Alcott) Hang in there dear TNRS friends.

    Liked by 9 people

  26. moomba1 says:

    Birthday Blessings to Snowy and Phillip Frank. Enjoy!

    Liked by 3 people

  27. LukeMichael says:

    Phillip Feliz Cumleanos and an Ave for you!

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Bob says:

    This on one of those who often seem to be funding disorder.
    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/jul/14/beware-the-george-soros-zombies/
    May God soon right the balance and remove power from those not seeking God:

    Liked by 5 people

  29. goldensun says:

    Hello team. Since Wednesday, I have been furiously trying to piece together the secrets of the universe and myself while taking care of my family, preparing the house for visiting family, and finally getting around to washing the dog. I can tell you, I have found the key! With a little help from my friends, I realized that God is laughing and wants us to laugh too.

    Liked by 3 people

  30. Praying for all of you here. You are becoming quite dear to my heart. Making my total consecration to Mary on this her Feast of Mt. Carmel. God bless us all in this world as Our Lady works with her Father, Spouse and Son to bring about the Divine Will here on earth and may we remember that every little thing we do for her, with her and through her becomes a beautiful bouquet that is ultimately done for, with and through our lovable Jesus for the glory of the Father and the salvation of souls!

    Come Holy Spirit!

    Liked by 6 people

  31. Linda says:

    Sort of cool…Mike & i are watching a silly little movie tonight .. we all get a little respite from watching mass police shootings..mass madman truck murderers and crazy coup de turkeys that we wish had succeeded… i mean no lightness here..as our souls are bleeding sorrow..but sort of strange.. & oh…HAPPY BIRTHDAY SNOWY OWL😊😇😙😙😙😙😙

    Liked by 3 people

  32. Ed Allison says:

    Meanwhile, in France: “We are on the verge of a civil war.” That quote did not come from a fanatic or a lunatic. No, it came from head of France’s homeland security, the DGSI (Direction générale de la sécurité intérieure), Patrick Calvar.

    It was prophesied by The Ecstatic of Tours in 1872-3, regarding the minor chastisement (storm), “The revolution will spread to every French town. Wholesale slaughter will take place. This revolution will last only a few months but it will be frightful.”

    For the sake of His sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

    Liked by 4 people

  33. Happy Feast of our Lady of Mt. Carmel! We are anxiously waiting here in Billings, Montana to host you Charlie! I hope Mary is looking at Sept or October. Many blessings to you as you travel to California and Colorado. Peace in your travels!
    Anyone willing to help in Billings, please contact me at byzantineritemom@yahoo.com

    Liked by 2 people

  34. noahswife says:

    Last night our Storm NH group gathered for prayer, meal and discussion and while I didn’t vocalize many thoughts, several came to mind. The most important for me was that we all pray for the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and especially the gift of discernment when faced with whether or not we should welcome someone into our home during the Storm. It also dawned on me that in order to keep the channels open to God’s grace we should keep our souls squeaky clean and stay as far removed from any attachment to sin as we can. Let’s all pray for one another that Our Lord will send us His gifts and graces to respond lovingly and generously, but also prudently, if we are under pressure and in a very stressful scenario. I know He will come through for us and give us what we need. And our Blessed Mother will be there to help us. We all concluded this last night.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Doug says:

      Hello Noah’s wife. May the a Lord bless you and may you get your ticket just before you board the train 😊

      Liked by 1 person

    • jlynnbyrd says:

      Amen Noahswife! Our Illinois TNRS Group Gathering meets next Saturday in the 23rd. We are fairly new and have been reflecting on how to be a “Family of God.” Charlie has certainly spelled out several steps we are encouraged to take. Being hospitable, a message conveyed in today’s Scripture, readings is surely key! I pray that you are surrounded by good neighbors, friends and family who will also be at your side.
      May we stay close to the sacraments, acknowledge God, take the next right steps and be a sign of hope with an abundance of graces poured out for each of us in the process to endure. Then may this way of life become the norm in His Kingdom on earth.

      Liked by 2 people

  35. Arby says:

    Hi Charlie,
    I am planning on attending that conference. I hope i get to meet you. I love father Bill Halbing whose website is Gods word alive today, he is a biblical scholar and a conference speaker.
    Take care,
    Love and Prayers
    Arby

    Liked by 2 people

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