Sunday, 26 January 2014

Teresa's meditiations on the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary - Second Mystery

Soul of a sinner - child of guilt and shame,
Now let another sight thy heart inflame!

With arms uplifted - merciless and bare,
See the sweet Victim in His love reveal'd,
By whose rich stripes alone our souls are healed:

Wrapt in His purple of descending gore,
He yields Him to the smiters more and more!

Dread Flagellation! shall its tortures tell
In vain - how we should have the doom of hell,

Had not for us the Word Incarnate trod,
The doleful winepress of the Wrath of God!

Hail, thou rejected Lamb! In all thy woe;
Let the hot tears of deep contrition flow:

Till sin, and self, and sense, be all abhorr'd,
Lost in the wounds of out once suffering Lord!

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Teresa's meditiations on the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary - Third Mystery

Soul of a sinner - subject to a Lord
For Thee once mock'd & crown'd & yet adhorr'd;

Come to this coronation; lo! the scorn
With which they weave His diadem of thorn!

Eye the vile splendour of that scarlet robe
Vesting the veil'd Creator of the globe!

Hear the rude jest - behold the bended knee,
The mirth infernal - and the homage see:

That Hand - once reach'd to each one in his need,
Now spurned by all - and scepter'd with a reed;

That Brow of majesty and might divine,
A throne of woe - with love in every line!

Here let me linger through life's pensive day,
Till this poor heart in tears shall melt away;

And death approach with liberation sweet
To let me fall - and worship at His feet!

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Cause of Teresa, Catholic Herald, 25th October 1936


A New Movement in London

The Catholic teachers of the Metropolitan district are now organising on a par with their compeers in the North and Midlands, to seek the Beatification of Teresa Higginson as " Patron of School-teachers."

A general committee with several branch sub-committees has been formed, and associates are being enrolled in all parts of Greater London. The Training Colleges, St. Mary's and St. Charles's, and the Mount Pleasant Association of London, are joining in the work, which is actively promoted by the several congregations directing them.

Among the officials are the recently elected President of the National Federation of Catholic Teachers; and the Vice-President of the Sirnmarian (St. Mary's) Association. At the first meeting of the General Committee, Mr. W. J. Ridge (hon. sec. of the M.C.T.A.), was elected as its president.

A Forthcoming Meeting

A meeting in Westminster Cathedral Hall (with the blessing and support of the Archbishop), is being prepared. The Vice Postulator, Mgr. O'Brien, of Bootle. Liverpool, will attend and give an account of the progress of the cause; and Lady Cecil Kerr of Edinburgh, Teresa's biographer and advocate, has promised to give an address. Representatives from the other local committees above-mentioned are expected to be present.

The movement in the Metropolis has been no doubt quickened by an address from Mgr. Thomas Adamson, secretary of the Archbishop of Liverpool. To the teachers of the archdiocese, he congratulated them on taking up the work so sincerely and enthusiastically, but adding:

"There will be difficulties. It is not an easy matter to get the Church formally to declare a person a saint. Witnesses have to be interviewed, documents and writings have to be collected and examined, the votes of theologians, bishops, and cardinals taken, before the Holy Father makes his final decision. Consequently, you must not expect to ace your efforts crowned with success within a few months. Moreover, in addition to the delay unavoidable in the formal process, you must not expect to be entirely free from irritations and vexations at home.

You will have criticism, plenty of it, as every good cause has. Much of it you will be able to ignore. On the other hand a kindly offer to explain the difficulties to your critics may often convert them to your cause. Personally I believe that the majority of the critics of Teresa Higginson are those who know least about her. Though we do not wish for a moment to anticipate the decision of the Church and assert definitely that she is truly a saint, nevertheless the fact that the authorities of the archdiocese have officially supported the Cause and have already forwarded it to Rome for examination is sufficient to justify our credibility."

United Efforts

There can be little doubt that these united efforts of the North and the South will encourage the advocates of this Cause in hoping to bring it to a successful issue at a not too distant date. It is also encouraging that interest in Teresa Higginson and her alleged revelations, is spreading rapidly all over the world. In the United States two of the Cardinal Archbishops, those of Boston and Philadelphia, like our own Archbishops are stimulating the eagerness of the Faithful to see Teresa beatified.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Teresa's meditiations on the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary - Fourth Mystery

Soul of a sinner - here without a home,
Art thou a pilgrim for the world to come?

See, then, thy Great Exemplar on His way
A path of dolours - cloth'd in red array!

The sight of Calvary His heart inspires
And lights eternal love with ardent fires.

Lo! where His Holy Mother stands opprest,
The sword of sorrow piercing through her breast!

See where the Cross - that purchase of the Crown
Weighs on His wounded frame, and sinks it down!

See when yon woman wipes His sacred face,
And wins a likeness of the King of Grace!

Hear where the daughters of sad Salem wail,
While Siloa's brook sighs softly through the vale;

These with sweet sympathy dissolve'd in fears,
That to be shortly swollen with their tears!

Lord! let each eye o'erflow with contrite grief,
And in the road to Calvary, seek relief!

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Teresa's meditiations on the Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary - Fifth Mystery

Soul of a sinner - turn with me once more
Upon a scene excelling all before!

And as the mighty Moses, when he saw
The Burning Bush with overwhelming awe,

Put off his shoes before the fire of God,
That he might worship on the sacred sod;

So thou from sin, and self, and sense set free,
Ascend the Holy Hill of Calvary!

Behold the Cross, in wreaths of sable furl'd,
The atoning Altar of a guilty world!

Look on thy Jesus in His final hour,
Till the look thrills thee with transforming power:

Hear His last words - the prayer - the bitter cry
That rends the Veil - and rocks the earth and sky:

Lo! how He Bows - when He resigns His breath,
That Head - which holds the crown of life and death.

And now the spear hath pierc'd His rifted side,
Whence flows for sinful man a double tide:

Oh! Glorious Cross! the "Tree of Lover" art Thou!
To Thee I kneel - beneath Thy shade I bow:

To Him - whom thou didst lift from earth to heaven;
Be my whole heart in sweet affection given!

Report on retreat on Teresa Higginson held at Pantasaph retreat centre

Recently a retreat was held at Pantasaph in North Wales from 28th - 30th June 2013. 


A group of twenty-one people interested in the promotion of the Devotion to the Sacred Head of Jesus, Seat of Divine Wisdom, as revealed to the nineteenth century Servant of God, Teresa Higginson, met at Pantasaph Monastery from June 28-30, under the chairmanship of Fr Keith Windsor OFM. Some of the group shared their particular interests in the background to the devotion. Several spoke of their long standing inherited family interest. It was explored that throughout Church history, the role of chosen souls given extraordinary gifts of the Holy Spirit at times when the culture required heavenly intervention:witness St Margaret Mary Alocoque and the Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The group prayed theprayers and litanies to the Sacred Head of Jesus during this dedicated retreat. 

This was an inaugural meeting which realised that as the Sacred Head Devotion is not yet accepted into the Cultus of the Church it must therefore remain Private Devotion. The group felt that the acceptance of the Devotion would enhance Teresa Higginson’s Cause and the two together will be a means of evangelisation to save souls. 

Teresa Higginson (1844-1905) was privileged to receive many visions, favours and private revelations from Our Lord. As early as Good Friday 1874, Jesus requested His Sacred Head be universally worshipped as the Seat of Divine Wisdom as a completion of the Devotion to His Sacred Heart and given as an antidote to the intellectual pride and increasing dominance of the scientific rationalism of her times. This makes itespecially timely today when the secularist agenda never ceases in its efforts to overshadow, drown out and intimidate the Christian witness to the moral truth of the Natural Law of God. 

Teresa was born and baptised in Holywell, North Wales, third child of eight, into a middle class pious family. Her precocious holiness was recognised by Blessed Dominic Barberi and Fr Ignatius Spencer, both frequent visitors to the family whose home was the local Mass centre in Gainsborough, Lincs. After Teresa spent ten years in a Convent in Nottingham, the family experienced financial hardship and moved to the North West, eventually settling in Neston on the Wirral, where Teresa was buried in the family grave at St Winefride’sChurch. Teresa stepped in to teach at St Alexandra’s Bootle during an outbreak of cholera and subsequently qualified as a teacher. In all her teaching positions, Teresa was a shining example of how to be holy whilst living as a lay person in the world. She was commanded under obedience by her spiritual director Fr Edward Powell of St Alexandra’s Bootle to give a detailed written account of her hidden life. This continued under her next director Canon Alfred Snow for the last twenty two years of her life. Canon Snow believed that she would eventually be proved to be one of the greatest Saints of the Church. 

There is much literature detailing the many extraordinary charismatic gifts given by God to Teresa Higginson: prophecy, bilocation, the stigmata, healings, ecstasies, mystical Communions, living almost completely on the Eucharist. She was frequently physically attacked by Satan hence the title of the most recent biography- The Devil in Bootle by Richard Whittington Egan. The definitive biography by Lady Cecil Kerr entitled Teresa Helena Higginson originally published in 1927 has recently been reprinted with an introduction by Rev Dr Paul Haffner, a Theology Professor in Rome. So much information about Teresa Higginson and the Devotion to the Sacred Head of Jesus is available on the Internet, an excellent website being which provides links to the official information channel and and Facebook etc. Cecil Kerr’s book may be read online through links on these sites. 

Teresa’s Cause was presented to Rome in 1937 and declared Non-Expedire in 1938 but is still listed at the 
Vatican in the Causes of Saints and may be opened at a future date. The devotees pray that if it is God’s Will, the Church will soon absorb the Devotion to the Sacred Head of Jesus, Seat of Divine Wisdom and God Willing, Teresa’s time will have come. 

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

A Child of Mary

This poem was found in Teresa's notebooks.  It can be sung as a hymn to the tune of St. Columba.

O favour'd mortal Mary's Child
Can tongue reveal thy bliss?
The spotless Angel round Her throne
Know not a name like this.

They hail Her as their sovereign Queen
The Mother of their Lord.
They are but servants kneeling there
To wait Her gracious call.

But thou cans't say, as Jesus said
O Mary Mother mine,
For He Himself on Calvary's hill
Has made his Mother thine.

Our Lady, the Child Jesus and St. Mary Magdalen

Twas in that hour beneath the Cross
At Jesus dying prayer
That first Her sinless hands were raised
And Mary blessed thee there.

Ah!  Yes and yet still She loves thee
Heaven's glorious Queen above
Looks down upon Her lowly child
With more than Mother's love.

When storms arise that fain would blast
And Satan wields his power
If you but hope and trust in Her
She'll shield you in that hour.

She'll guide and guard thy every step
In life's long rugged way
If thou but trust and cling to Her
Thy foot shall never stray.

Fear not, thy soul is in Her hand
She knows the price it cost
Fear not: it never yet was known -
That Mary's child was lost. 

 Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Aphorisms of Teresa, recorded by her friend Susan Ryland (later Sr. Barbara)

The mortar is only as useful as the bricks.

Make stepping stones of stumbling blocks.

Small straws shew which way the wind blows.

It is not the work of God to destroy feeling, but to overcome it.

(when washing oneself) Jesus, wash me with Your Precious Blood.

(when dressing) Jesus, clothe my soul with the virtues.

Do not worry.  Have confidence and He in whom you trust will cause the sun to shine and the storm to cease, and lull you to repose in the sure haven of His Sacred Heart.

and most important of all, in the humble opinion of the blog author:

The Mercy of God is greater than all His Works.

Teresa's prayer in honour of the Sacred Head, Seat of Divine Wisdom

My Lord and my God, humbly prostrate before Thee, I adore Thy Sacred Head as the Seat of Divine Wisdom, the Shrine of the Powers of Thy most Holy Soul and Intellectual Faculties, and the centre of the five Senses of Thine adorable Body.

When I gaze into the depths of this fathomless abyss of Goodness, Power and Wisdom, which has contrived and instituted such unheard of ways and means of proving Thine infinite Love, and lavishing Thy choicest gifts upon me, Thy poor child, I am lost in astonishment and admiration.

O Light of lights, in whose glorious rays I see fresh mines of Wealth in the Sacred Heart; O Sun of Justice, in whose intense heat I feel the burning Love that consumes the Sacred Heart.

O Will, which was always in meek subjection to Thy Heavenly Father's, control me in all things, as Thou didst govern all the affections and motions of the Sacred Heart of the God made Man.

O Understanding, which knows all things, ever guide me with Thy Light.

O Memory, in which past, present, and future are at once reflected, which is ever mindful of me, and always seems to be studying some new means of giving fresh favours, force me to love Thee more and more.

Oh!  By the shining light of Thine Eyes, teach me to see Thee in all things; and by Thine Ears, which are ever open to the prayers of the needy, grant that I may ever hear the voice of Thy Church, and listen to Thy holy inspirations.  Oh, give me always a love and a relish for what is right and just.  Let me taste how sweet Thou art.  Let me drawn by the odour of Thy Virtues, and feel forever the intense joy of seeing, loving, praising, blessing and glorifying Thee for all eternity.

O Flood of Light!  Mine of Wealth!  Ocean of Goodness!  Sea of Mercy!  Fountain of Living Waters!  Fire of Love!  Source of all Good!  To Thee I consecrate myself with that I am or have.

O Sacred Head, Seat of Divine Wisdom, Tabernacle of God with man; in Thee I behold at once a celestial and terrestrial Paradise, a new Heaven, and a new Earth; the new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven prepared and adorned as a bride glowing with light and glory, in whose sparkling crystals I behold all the attributes of the Godhead reflected as a sea of glass.

O Rainbow of peace!  O Burning Bush!  O Peerless Pearl!  Storehouse of the Treasures of God!  O Lamp, ever burning!  Brightness unfading!  Sun for ever shining!  O Tree of Life!  Life and Light of those who are Thine!  O Seal of the Elect.

O Wisdom without beginning or end!  Boundless knowledge!  Love so great that we cannot understand it!  To Thee I raise my prayer of love, reparation and thanksgiving from the centre of the Sacred Heart, where I safely hide; and I beg of Thee to accept, O my Jesus, all the treasures of this infinite mystery of love and riches, in atonement for my coldness, misery, and poverty.

O Jesus, my beloved Jesus.  I love Thee far more than I can tell; Jesus, my Spouse, and my treasure, I grieve that Thou art so little known and so much offended.  Jesus, my Life and my Light, may all minds know Thee, all hearts love Thee, and all tongues praise Thee, now and for ever more.  Amen.

Jesus!  Jesus!  Jesus!  O Seat of Divine Wisdom, have mercy on me, O Sacred Head and loving Heart, guide me with Thy Light, and consume me with Thy fire.  Amen.

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Teresa's prayer to the Soul of Jesus sorrowful unto death

REMEMBER, O most sorrowful Soul of my Jesus, the fearful agony that Thou didst endure, when plunged into the depths of Thy Father's Justice and Wrath, Thou didst cry out, "My Father, if it be possible, let this bitter Chalice pass from me, nevertheless not My Will but Thine be done;" and when overwhelmed in deepest woe, Thou didst complain that "Thy Soul was sorrowful, even unto death;" and when agonising, dying and deserted by all, even by Thine eternal Father, these words of wondrous mystery were wrung from Thee, "My God!  My God!  Why hast Thou forsaken me?"

Remember the sighs, the groans, the anguish of soul, the agony of mind, and the braking of Thy Loving Heart.  Remember the many stripes, the blows, the insults, the blasphemies, the thorns, the Blood, the Tears, the stripping of Thy garments, the shame, the prayers, the separation of Thy Holy Soul from Thine adorable Body.

Remember the Wisdom of Thy Sacred Head that had contrived so much suffering, and would thus prove the Love of Thy Sacred Heart, for the souls of Thy children.  Remember, too, what Mary suffered.

Remember the price I have cost Thee, and when Thou beholdest all these fearful tortures, have mercy and pity on my soul, and forgive me through Thy Precious Blood.

Why O my crucified, loving Jesus, are so many souls in darkness and sin?  Art thou not the Almighty God?  The God of Wisdom, of Knowledge, of Light?  Art Thou not our Creator, our Redeemer, our Sanctification, our holy and strong God?  Why then is our enemy and Thine so bold?  

O Lord, for the love Thou hast for souls, for the price we have cost Thee, for the glory of Thy Name, arise and show that Thou art the Living God.  Lighten up every darkness by the Light of Thy Divine Wisdom; expel all heresies by spreading the truth of Thy doctrines, and the beauty of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Faith throughout all nations.  Consume all hearts with the burning fire of Thy Love.  Draw all souls to Thy Soul, that we console and comfort Thee here, by weeping over sin, which is the cause of Thy intense sorrow.  Hide us, dear Jesus in Thy wounds; bathe our souls in Thy most Precious Blood.  Stamp Thy Sacred head and Face deeply in our hearts and souls that we may never forget Thee, nor the sorrow we have caused Thee.

Remember us, Lord, in Thy Kingdom, Grant us pardon and peace here and eternal happiness in the world to come.  Let us keep near Thee, Jesus, in Thy sorrow, that we may be found worthy to dwell for ever with Thee, the Father, and the Holy Spirit, One God in three distinct Persons, in the world without end.  Amen.

Jesus, Mary, Joseph.  Amen.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Memorare to the Divine Soul

REMEMBER, O most Holy Soul of my Jesus, all Thou hast done and suffered for my soul, and let it not perish.  I beseech Thee, through the anguish that forced Thy very Heart's Blood from Thy Sacred Veins, and I conjure Thee to bathe mine, and all poor sinners, in that precious Stream, which ran down in ruby drops upon the ground.  Remember the deep and boundless love Thou hast shown to it, and drive not away from Thee this soul which comes back to Thee, fainting under the weight of its miseries and sorrows.  O deign to feel for its weakness; behold the dangers which encompass it on all sides, the evils which cause it to sigh and groan.

Full of trust and love, it comes to Thee, O most tender and compassionate of all souls; receive it in Thy Mercy and Goodness; cause it to feel the effects of Thy most plentiful Redemption, and the excess of Thy burning Love.  Show Thyself its advocate with Thy Heavenly Father, in the name of all Thy merits, Thy humiliations, and sufferings, and grant it strength in all its struggles, and grace to love and console Thee in time, that it may possess, praise, and thank Thee for all eternity.  Amen.

Soul of Jesus, sorrowful unto death, would that I could console Thee in Thy bitter anguish and grief.

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Complaints of the Soul of our Blessed Lord

My Soul is not known.  My Soul is not loved.  Night and day I see lamps burning before My Altar.  My Sacrament of love finds worshippers and victims; but My Soul does not meet with sympathising souls.

Every day I give Myself to My creatures, and, swallowed up in this union, they praise everything in Me, but My Soul and My Sacred Head crowned with thorns, the Seat of Divine Wisdom.

Each day My Cross is bathed with tears, and the daughters of Zion cannot be comforted, because they see Me without brightness and beauty, but few there are who compassionate the anguish of My Soul, sorrowful unto death.

My Heart has found thousands of hearts, but My Soul remains solitary, and My Thorn-crowned Brow unhonoured, My Face besmeared, and My Eyes and Mouth filled with congealing Blood, and no one is there to wipe It away and refresh My parched Lips and swollen Tongue.

"My Soul is sorrowful even unto death, and I have looked for some one to comfort Me and there is none."

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Prayer of Teresa to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament

O DIVINE Jesus, lonely to-night in so many Tabernacles, without visitor or worshipper, I offer Thee my lonely heart, and may its beatings be a prayer of love to Thee. Thou art ever watching under Sacramental veils; in Thy Love Thou never sleepest, and art never weary in Thy vigil for sinners.  O loving Jesus, O lovely Jesus, may my heart be a lamp, the light of which shall burn for Thee alone.  Watch, Sacramental Sentinel, watch for the weary world, for the erring soul and for Thy poor lonely child.  Amen.

O Sacred Heart of Jesus that I could water with my tears those places where the marks of Thy Love have been received only with contempt and indifference.  In reparation for such injuries, I offer Thee the love of all just souls, the ardour of the angels, and above all, the tender sentiments of thine Immaculate Mother.  Permit me to unite with that offering the affections of my heart.  Amen.

Monday, 18 February 2013

Prayer of Teresa for the conversion of England

O Lord Jesus Christ, infinite Goodness, Who by the Divine Sacrament of thy body and Blood dost regenerate, strengthen, and nourish Thy Church, and daily offerest Thyself a sacrifice of praise and propitiations to Thine Eternal Father, look propitiously upon our beloved country, which is excluded from the Sweets of Thy Banquet.  All that is in this land has been done and said through impiety or ignorance against these most Holy Mysteries, mercifully pardon - inspire the minds of all men with faith and reverence for this beloved Sacrament, so that all in this land may become Thy children, like olive plants round Thy Table, through the same Jesus Christ out Lord.  Amen.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Benedict XVI: Thy will be done.

Today on the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes our Holy Father Benedict XVI has announced his resignation due to reasons of declining health and increasing incapacity to carry out the duties of supreme pontiff, coming into effect on Thursday 28th February at 7.00pm GMT.   Through the intercession of the servant of God Teresa Higginson let us ask that the wisdom of the Sacred Head may grant a worthy successor to ascend to the Chair of Peter.

Father of all, we fain would say, as did Thy only Son,
In every hour of every day, Oh let Thy Will be done.

In thought, in word, in deed, in death, things finished or begun,
Let every transitory breath whisper: Thy Will be done.

In daily cares to thousands known, or known perchance to none,
Let this request be heard above: Oh! Lord, Thy Will be done.

In sickness though some stroke unseen may oft the senses stun,
Let grace suggestive intervene to feel Thy Will be done.

In health, when in its full career the race of man is run,
Let joy be taught by holy fear to pray: Thy Will be done.

Amid the rocks and shoals of life which few can ever shun,
Let peace compose each spark of strife and cry: Thy Will be done.

And when the bow of hope shall blend all colours into one,
Time with eternity shall end with: LORD, THY WILL BE DONE.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Teresa Higginson's experience of the fires of purgatory Part III

Bootle, May 18th, 1883

...The two flames of which I have spoken to you, although they burn and consume as it were the whole being and cause a most exquisite pain, yet they seem to regenerate and renew in a wonderful manner, I mean that the agony they cause is more than mortal, yet they produce a new life and cause a deep peace and sweet calm in which truths are seen and clearly understood, and things are measured and weighed according to their worth.  The light produced by these flames in the soul annihilates; it instructs the understanding and compels the heart to love God and souls so intensely that we do not know what to do with ourselves...

So long as these flames consume the soul there is no fear of anything but the deepest humility and absolute annihilation.  It is a true light in which we see God's infinite attributes and almighty power and our own weakness, wretchedness and misery, yet we see as we have never seen before the gifts which our dear Lord has given to us, the jewels with which our divine Spouse has enriched us that we may glorify Him in His works and bless and glorify Him for being mindful of His poor helpless little worms..

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Prophecy of famine and the falling away of many priests

Teresa foresaw much of what was to happen in the twentieth century, in particular the widespread famines (as happened in the collectivisation of the Ukraine in the 1930's) and the widespread moral failing, defection and dissent of the priesthood in the years following the Second Vatican Council.  Yet she foresaw a period and peace and consolation for the church.  This was what she wrote in 1880 to Fr. Powell:

“On another occasion I saw the stars shining brightly in the firmament and I saw a smoke arise, then I saw numbers of them fall and our b. Lord made me understand that through levity, want of mortification, and intellectual pride, many of His priests will presently fall away. 

At other times I have seen dried up herbage, dead cattle and fainting forms of human beings which I think indicates famine but I have not been distinctly told so. I do not know either the exact time these things will come to pass, but I understand that they are now hanging over our heads. The sign which marks the foreheads of the saved is the Wisdom the seat of which He expresses shall be duly and publicly worshipped.”

Ukrainian famine of 1932 - 1933

“When these things shall have passed, there will be very few left who have not His seal upon their foreheads, yet these will be brought to love and adore the Wisdom of the Father in person of Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit dwelling in the hearts and minds of His people, the Church will enjoy a great peace and calm, and God will be adored, loved known and served verily and indeed.”

Monday, 19 November 2012

A prophecy of the atomic bomb?

In 1880 Teresa wrote this letter to Fr. Powell, in which Our Lord revealed to her the terrible judgements of war that would happen in the future.  This was published in Lady Cecil Kerr's biography of 1927, when the atomic bomb had not even been imagined:

“If it were not in obedience, I should never attempt to describe the dreadful things which have been shown to me, but, trusting in that wisdom and power, I hope He will give you a right understanding and knowledge of all that you wish me in His Name to relate. Oh Jesus, my beloved Jesus, be Thou a Jesus to us and save us whom Thou hast redeemed by Thy most precious Blood. I know not how or where I was taken, but it seemed to me that I was in a high place and looked down upon the earth. First I saw a cloud of darkness encompass the earth, a real thick material darkness which I understood too was a figure of the darkness of the intellect into which man had precipitated himself, then I heard the sound of mighty thunder and saw the lightning flash, and it seemed to me as if balls of fire fell upon the earth and struck it to its centre splintering the rocks to fragments. And I heard the rush of waters and a fearful wail of mourning arose from the earth, and humbly prostrating myself I craved for mercy through the Blood and bitter Passion of Jesus Christ, for through this darkness could be seen distinctly shining stars on the bosom of the earth (the holy tabernacles of His love), and I begged God not to look upon us but on the face of His Christ. And I heard a mighty voice say, ‘I will not save this people for they are flesh. Ask me not in His Blood for His Blood is upon them.’ (I understood to condemn them). But still I continued uniting my poor prayer with that of our dear crucified Jesus, saying over and over again, ‘Father forgive them for they know not what they do. Jesus, Mercy! Mary, help!’

“I cannot say how long this lasted, for I was as much afraid as I was humbled, but then I heard a voice I knew full well to be that of our dear Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ saying: ‘Say that not one of these that are given to me shall be lost.’ Then the earthquakes stopped and the lightnings ceased and I beheld starved and maniac looking forms rise trembling to their feet, and I saw the sign upon their foreheads, and with them and the whole court of heaven I praised and blessed that God of infinite wisdom who in His mercy has redeemed us in His Blood.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Teresa Higginson's experience of the fires of purgatory Part II

Bootle March 1883

First I must tell you that the fire of which I wrote seems to me to be purely spiritual, and I feel that without it I could not have withstood that which it pleased Our Blessed Lord to give to me, or in other words that the human soul must be purified in this flame before it can gaze so far into the infinities of God, and it would seem to me that eye hath not seen nor ear heard nor is it given to the mind of man to conceive this part of the dreadful bitter passion, for the soul finds itself launched out into the infinities of God and carried away in the torrent of His wrath, or pressed down beneath the weight of His judgements, and as the Precious Blood, the stream of life, trickles from the Sacred Heart, it sets the poor trembling soul on fire with desire and love, zeal and impatience, raising it from the earth earthly and pressing on it nearer and nearer, deeper and deeper down into those unfathomable  depths of the infinite attributes of God.

This knowledge is of greater value to the soul than any which God has given to me, and yet I see clearly that I do not know in any way how to express the depths into which I have been plunged by God.  All that it has pleased Him for me to endure in His name (other years) is but a little stream from a scalding torrent He has now deluged my whole being in and saturated me through and through.  The dreadful tortures and awful sufferings which I have been able to write of other years were within the scope of human feeling or human intelligence to conceive, but the most terrible part of the Passion of Jesus was in the soul and in the intellectual faculties.  He had to atone to the all holy and infinitely pure Spirit of God (by His submission) for the sins of the great intelligences which rebelled against God and for whom hell was created.  He had to make full satisfaction for the sins of rational beings made to the image of the Triune God....

I think really without that fire (I don't know exactly but I think it is from God's awful purity) I could not possible have gone through half of that which it pleased our dear divine Lord to give to me, for in the first place I could not have seen things as they really are.  The understanding is wonderfully illuminated and the eye of the soul purified in this fire, and the flame of divine love seems to shoot up higher.  In it I saw man's ingratitude in a deeper dye and God's love for His own glory and for souls in a new and more glorious light than I had ever seen before...

Friday, 26 October 2012

Teresa's accounts of her mystical marriage to Fr. Alfred Snow

The following are two letters to Father Alfred Snow, from Lady Anne Cecil Kerr's biography:

“In the name of the Adorable and undivided Trinity, and to the glory of Jesus my divine Spouse and only Treasure, in honour of Mary my Immaculate Queen and Mother, and in obedience, I will try and write something of those things which He has vouchsafed to me the very least of His little ones. I have written an account of the unspeakable favour which Jesus Christ the Son of God and the ever blessed Virgin Mary has granted to me, and when I read it over it seemed in no way to convey what He really has accomplished, for the change that has come over my soul is so astounding that I cannot express it or convey by any comparison what has really been done. I feel and realise those wondrous words of our dear Lord, ‘My peace I give you’ etc. and it brings such a sweet bright light in the soul that they only can understand who experience it, and our dear Lord has taught me the hidden things of God with such excessive delights that all the senses enjoy such an immense degree of sweetness that nothing here could in any way describe. And if you wish me to tell you what I have seen or what He has taught me, I can only say He has taught me great truths hidden in His immensity. He has laid open His secret and I have drunk to excess, and yet, as there is no image of any sort represented to the understanding, the soul learns and enjoys without knowing what she learns and enjoys. These things may seem to you to be folly on my part, but perhaps it is on account of my nothingness and misery that I am not able to give you a better idea of what passes now or how my soul is contained or held in God and how He acts with her. But even if it is so, oh how I thank Him for knowing nothing and having nothing but Himself, oh how rich I am in His possession! And though the soul may be astounded at first at His condescension, yet afterwards when she considers His immense love, she lies as it were in peace without in any way considering herself. Yet she knows and understands how He is all hers and she is all His, but she has no thought but of Him. I mean she forgets her own misery and sins and does not wish to do this or that but only His adorable Will, and this she hungers and thirsts for as He makes her understand like Him she ‘must be about her Father’s business’ and testify to the world the love and goodness of Jesus, her divine Spouse. Oh that I had the tongue of men and angels that I might proclaim to the whole world what He is and His wonderful love, that I could tell or give them to taste how sweet is the Lord and what they lose who run after the empty bubbles of the world. Oh all we could do or suffer for ages would be nothing to purchase so great a good. Oh that I could tell what I experience in Him who is all good, all powerful, all Wisdom. My soul doth magnify the Lord and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour because He hath regarded the humility of His handmaid.

 Mystical marriage of St. Catherine

“Oh my Father, you must pardon me. I do really wish and desire to make all clear to you, and I beg of Him, whom I know will not refuse my request, to teach you by experience and show you my soul as He sees it, that so you may know how to guide and take me with you to His eternal possession.

“Ah what a foretaste I have already of that eternal bliss, for the soul seems to have become one with God in such a close bond of union that all fear of losing Him seems out of the question, for it seems that the soul as a little drop of vapour is drawn up into the immeasurable ocean of God’s infinity. Here she feels to possess all and she cares not whether she lives or dies.

“I don't know but what those great impetuosities may return, but at present I feel as though I had not to run after God as it were, but that I possessed Him and was more closely united to Him than my soul is to my body, that He is the soul of my existence and that I feel and live in Him, that He does all and that I do nothing.

“He has taught me oh so clearly too, all that He has done for me and how miserable a wretch I should have been without Him, and when He shows me the beauty with which He has clothed me and the wonderful works He has accomplished in me, I am forced as it were to sink in the abyss of my own nothingness and praise Him for His mighty acts. And instead of trying to run away as it were at telling you, I feel as though I were robbing Him of that which is His if I did not try to tell you as I know things myself, for all is His and I am and have nothing, and it would seem to be a false humility that I have hitherto had – wishing to hide His favours, as though I considered they were in some way mine, or that I had anything to do with them.

“I seem to have become as a powerful eagle that can soar to and gaze on the midday sun, and as those who look at the sun can see nothing but it for some time, so now I see nothing but Him in all things and all things in Him. That great fear of death and desire of it are gone and I feel such a real disengagement from all created objects, and I feel to have gained such a great dominion over myself that I don’t think anyone can understand but those to whom our dear Lord my Spouse and only Love has given it, for I know too so well that I never could have acquired it no matter how I worked or exerted myself. It is all His work and I feel myself so freed out of this prison of death that I lie basking in peace in the light of His Truth. He has dug deep in the trench that so He might fill me with Himself. He has filled up the valleys on a level with the hills, and the mountains He has lowered that I may view their tops and look down on all things beneath. Oh my Father, I could never tell you all that in His goodness and mercy He has done for me, and it seems to take away from it rather than anything else when I try to express them in such cyphers as is the language of men, when trying to describe the truths and favours of Almighty God.

“Begging of you again and again to bless the Lord for all He has done for me, and offering His adorable Precious Blood in thanksgiving, I unite my voice with His, with Mary’s and the whole court of Heaven in praising and blessing our God who sitteth upon the throne, and the Lamb who redeemed us by His blood and made us to reign with Him for ever and ever. Amen.
“TERESA HIGGINSON              “Enfant de Marie”
“Oh my Father it seems presumption almost on my part to attempt to describe the wonderful things our dear b. Lord has done for my poor soul, and yet I know I must endeavour that you may thoroughly understand His workings in me. Though it seems as if I could not comprehend at once all that His infinite goodness accomplishes, oh how clearly He has taught me in very truth the true estimate of all things here and to judge rightly of His gifts and graces. Here the soul becomes as it were a very queen of liberty, she has bound up all for Jesus and He sets His little captive free, she has sunk in the abyss of her own nothingness and He raises her to a most intimate union with Himself and the adorable Trinity. She has stripped herself of all things for His sake and He clothes her in His glory. She has tasted of the bitterness of life for His sake and He fills her with unutterable sweetness; and now she who was so afraid and weak is made strong and desires to fly to the heights and gaze on and bury herself in the centre of that sun at which sometimes she felt unable to look, for the light was too strong for her weakness. Now she desires to plunge deeper and deeper into that eternal Essence, to gaze into that sparkling crystal and there drink the waters of life and eat the food of the strong. Here she is taught that she is nothing and has nothing, that all is her divine Spouse’s, and she feels as though she could go to the tops of the mountains and proclaim His greatness, His wisdom, His love, and His goodness aloud to the whole world, that all might acknowledge that He is the Lord and praise and magnify His Holy Name.

“I feel as though I had no heart or soul but that God Himself is my soul and there He shines and rules all in such wonderful wisdom and peace. Oh my soul, bless the Lord and let all that is in thee praise His Holy Name. It would seem to me as though our dear Lord my divine Spouse and Mary my dear queen and my mother were keeping high court within my poor soul and allowing me to understand the glory that so many angels and saints are enjoying in His presence, for they are present with and seem to accompany me. Oh my Father, if it were only to witness the beauty of the stones in this circle of our union, to behold the gems that represent His sacred Wounds, I think it is more than human nature could endure, and it seems to fill my poor body even with a spiritual life and brightness that it seems buoyed up so to speak; but I do not now care what becomes of it, whether it is raised up before others or not. His glory and Holy Will are all I desire. I feel as though I could sing the Magnificat aloud with my more than Mother Mary.
“T. HIGGINSON.             
“Enfant de Marie.”

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Teresa's account of her mystical marriage to Fr. Edward Powell

From the biography of Lady Anne Cecil Kerr.

The wonderful ceremony of her Mystical Marriage took place during the night of the 23rd of October, 1887, between the feast of the Holy Redeemer and that of St. Raphael. She wrote at once to Father Snow and a few days later sent a somewhat fuller account in reply to a request from Father Powell. Her eyes had beheld that which it is not given to man to utter and she speaks as one still dazed from the glory of that vision. Her very writing, wavering and almost illegible, betrays that she was trembling on the verge of ecstasy as she wrote. The following is what she wrote to Father Powell:

  Mystical marriage of St. Catherine of Alexandria

AMDG et in hon BVM et St J
“In the Name of the most august and blessed Trinity and in holy obedience I write of the unspeakable favours which Jesus Christ true God and true Man, my divine Spouse and only Treasure through the excess of His infinite Love has bestowed on me, the very least of His little ones. Oh my Father, how can I find words to express this wonderful mystery, this excess of His mercy and love which is more astounding to me than the great mystery of the Incarnation. Oh my Love, my Love, my beautiful One, My Jesus, my Own, my All, my God, my (the writing becomes illegible).

“Oh my Father it seems to me almost impossible to continue, or rather I should say I am unable to begin and describe what I would. This is the third paper I have spoiled; I am carried away at the recollection of His wonderful condescension. I have twice before written the four pages and when I read them over I found it full of little prayers, and now again I find myself like one only half awake, for my whole being seems lost in His infinite immensity, His wonderful Attributes, the unspeakable dignity to which He has raised this little nothing. And so prostrating myself before the thrice holy Trinity and before Jesus, my own Jesus, my spouse and my Treasure, I beg of Him to guide my hand and my understanding that I may write without these little wanderings and make clear to you all that you would wish to know, to the praise and glory of His Holy Name. Oh my soul bless the Lord and magnify, for He has regarded the nothingness of His handmaid and has had compassion on my weakness and misery. He has drawn up this little drop of water from the earth into the ocean of His infinity, into the Essence of the Unity and Trinity of the Almighty God of Wisdom and Love, the all-pure and uncreated One, and made me one with Himself in the most holy and solemn bond of marriage. He has really and truly united Himself to me in the presence of the whole court of heaven, presenting me as His beloved Spouse to the Eternal Father and the Holy Spirit, and His Blessed Mother, St. Joseph, the Cherubim and Seraphim, etc. etc. and making me feel and understand how this sacred alliance was as real and as true as the union of His divine and human Nature in the one Person of Himself, Jesus Christ the Coeternal Son and the Son of Mary since the moment of the Incarnation. And in His Name and with His help, I will tell the way as far as I can that all has been accomplished.

“Remember oh my Love and my Lord that I am all Thine and Thou art the God of Truth, the Word that is God, and that now I am one with Thee as the body and soul of man are one person, so my words must be a reflection of Thine, must be, as Thou hast said to me they shall be, Wisdom and Truth, as the honey that drips from the hive, pure and sweet, and all men may confess that these things are the works of Thy Wisdom and Love.

“Since the feast of our holy Father St. Francis, when my divine Spouse gave me the general absolution (as I complained to Him that I had not been able to receive it from the hands of a priest and we had no Franciscans here), He caressed my soul as it were and told me that He would give me the absolution, not to take away sins from which He had preserved me, but to saturate me with His most Precious Blood and make me more like Himself. And He let me feel that my soul (through His presence and the holy Sacraments) gave great glory to the adorable Trinity and was a reflection of Themselves in the powers in which He had and they had taken up their abode and which was glistening and saturated with His adorable precious Blood. He told me frequently that, as I had given myself wholly to Him to be His entirely, so He would be all mine, and that He would glorify me in the sight of the angels and saints, because I had emptied myself and become as naught to myself and had gladly clothed myself with the sins of others for the price they had cost Him and for the love of His image and likeness. And because I desired Him with a longing nigh unto death, He would unite Himself to me in the closest union possible and clothe me with the brightness of His glory, and because I had rejoiced and united myself to Him when I was reviled by men and had clothed myself in the fool’s garment (as it were), as He was during His bitter Passion, so He was about to clothe me with the wedding garment of Purity, Charity and Truth.

He also shot those fiery darts of love from His Sacred Heart into the very centre of my poor soul so frequently that I felt as though my breast was a liquid fire: a boiling seemed to be going on in and through my entire being, and the pain it caused was so excessive that I continually cried aloud to Him for pity and told Him again and again that He knew how I loved and desired Him and begged of Him to burn away all that was not Himself and so unite me and make me all His own, though never for one moment dreaming of the unutterable favour which His love has accomplished. In this fire which burns very clearly for there is no smoke or wet fuel – in this consuming flame all is brightness, and the light thereof is very pure so that the soul sees very clearly what God is and what He has done for her and that she has nothing of her own, all being the gift of her great and wise Creator and Redeemer, and she knows and understands how the Holy Spirit has sanctified her, and seeing what she is and what God is, she is as it were annihilated in His sacred presence. Oh how He has taught me what I am and what I owe Him and His excessive love!

 St. Raphael with Tobias

“Well, on Sunday the 23rd, the feast of our Holy Redeemer, I thought of the holy Sacrifice being offered for me, I tried to make the same act of oblation to God of myself as my divine Spouse made to His Eternal Father during His most bitter Passion, and I felt that He graciously accepted the offering I made. Then in the evening I begged of the angel Raphael to guide me to my divine Spouse as he did of old the young Tobias, and I sent the angel of the Incarnation to present my soul to Him with all its affections, my body with all its senses to be all His forever, and I begged him to present me through the hands of Mary His Queen and my Mother as a clean oblation in His sight. Then I repeated several times: ‘Oh Wisdom of the Sacred Head, guide me in all my ways, oh love of the Sacred Heart consume me with Thy fire’, when I found my soul fluttering on my lips almost and my spirit softly stealing through the gates of death and I was fainting away with desire, and yet such a calm sweet peace was in my soul that it seemed to check the throbbing of my poor heart that tried to break, because it was overwhelmed with His goodness and love and yearned to be united with Him whom it loves with all its affections.

Oh how I hunger and thirst after Him for He alone can satisfy! And as I was thus literally dying I think of desire of Him, He appeared holding the b. Sacrament before me and I thought He had come as He so frequently does to feed me with His adorable Body and refresh me with His most precious Blood, but refrained for some time (it seemed an age to me) and stood gazing into the very centre of my poor trembling soul, which would have left this poor prison of the flesh if it could to fly to and rest in Him, her only Good.

Then He gave me Himself in Holy Communion and the Sacred Host liquified and I seemed to drink of the Precious Blood till I was saturated through and through. And it changed all into Itself, and my divine Spouse spoke to my soul and said He would now fulfil the promise He had made to me so often and present me to the adorable Trinity, and unite Himself to me in presence of the whole court of heaven. I felt annihilated at these words, for I felt my nothingness and unworthiness and I think I would really have died if He had not supported me by a new miracle of power and love. Then He said, ‘Arise my Beloved that I may glorify the triune God in Unity and espouse thee in Their adorable presence.’ And turning then to His blessed Mother, He gave me to her as her daughter, and Mary taking hold of my hand gave it to Jesus and He withdrew the ring that He had before placed upon it and then replaced it on the same finger, saying: ‘I espouse thee in the Name and in the presence of the uncreated Trinity and in presence of My Immaculate Mother, and I give you to her as a daughter and my Spouse for ever.

Mystical marriage of St. Catherine of Siena

“I was wrapped in the Essence of the Eternal Godhead and I heard and saw things which it is not given to man to utter, and when I began to come to myself I beheld the ring (which encircled the finger next the little finger of my left hand) which was a circle of thorns as it were, set with seven beautiful crystals more beautiful than diamonds which looked like liquid gems, the centre representing the Holy Soul of my divine Spouse in which the adorable Trinity is represented by the three powers, and are as it were a reflecting glass in which They behold their Unity in Essence. Then to the right is represented the Sacred Head as the Seat of divine Wisdom, and on the other side the Sacred Heart is represented, and the other four are to represent the Wounds in His sacred Hands and Feet. Oh what brightness and beauty issues from this little ring; what glory it gives, that I could not behold it I think and live if it were not that He who gave it sustains me with His power. Then He allowed me to see the soul I have often seen before but now more beautiful than ever, and He told me, as I sang with the angels hymns of praise, that was the soul of His beloved Spouse, that that glory was my nuptial robe and that He with the Father and Holy Spirit were glorified in me and that I should dwell with them and His Blessed Mother and St. Joseph for ever. He also told me to remember that I was His, that He was Almighty God and I like Him must be about my Father’s business. I understand I have a great deal to do for souls and many difficulties will surround me, but I must take courage and have great confidence in Him. Since then it seems to me that so many saints are with me, and the angels as a guard of honour watch in admiring wonder the mercies of the adorable Trinity to this very least of His little ones, and I could and do continually unite with my dear Mother Mary in singing the Magnificat and singing praises to the Father, the Holy Spirit and Jesus Christ my Divine Spouse.


“I could not describe what God has taught me while held in His infinite and divine Essence, for it seems to me that no form is represented to the understanding, but that the soul is in God’s Immensity, and she sees and knows mysteries which are hidden in God and which it is not given to her to utter, and she enjoys without actually knowing what she enjoys. The secrets of God are made known, but the understanding, being lost in God, cannot comprehend what He has taught her.

“But when I see you I will try and tell you more.

“Begging your prayers and blessing and promising to do all I can for you and yours, I remain dear rev. Father
“Your obedient and devoted child                
“In the S. Head and loving Heart    
“Enfant de Marie.”