Dom Gueranger on Rogations and Wrath
Remarked the priest who sent this to us: “You would think this was written today.” Read the full piece on Rogation Days by Dom Gueranger on the website of FSSP Atlanta. -ed.
“Let us think, for a moment, of the countless sins that are being committed, day and night; and let us sue for mercy.
In the days of Noe, all flesh had corrupted its way; but men thought not of asking for mercy. The flood came, and destroyed them all, says our Saviour. Had they prayed, had they begged God’s pardon, the hand of His justice would have been stayed, and the flood-gates of heaven would not have been opened.
The day is to come, when not water as heretofore, but fire, is suddenly to be enkindled by the divine wrath, and is to burn the whole earth. It shall burn even the foundations of the mountains; it shall devour sinners, who will be resting then, as they were in the days of Noe, in a false security.
Persecuted by her enemies, decimated by the martyrdom of her children, afflicted by numerous apostasies from the faith, and deprived of every human aid, the Church will know that the terrible chastisement is at hand, for prayer will then be as rare as faith.
Let us, therefore, pray; that thus the day of wrath may be put off, the Christian life regain something of its ancient vigour, and the end of the world not be in our times. There are even yet Catholics in every part of the world; but their number has visibly decreased.
Heresy is now in possession of whole countries, that were once faithful to the Church. In others, where heresy has not triumphed, religious indifference has left the majority of men with nothing of Catholicity but the name, seeing that they neglect even their most essential obligations without remorse.
Among many of those who fulfil the precepts of the Church, truths are diminished. The old honesty of faith has been superseded by loose ideas and half-formed convictions. A man is popular in proportion to the concessions he makes in favour of principles condemned by the Church.
The sentiments and actions of the saints, the conduct and teaching of the Church, are taxed with exaggeration, and decried as being unsuited to the period. The search after comforts has become a serious study; the thirst for earthly goods is a noble passion; independence is an idol to which everything must be sacrificed; submission is a humiliation which must be got rid of, or, where that cannot be, it must not be publicly acknowledged.
Finally, there is sensualism, which, like an impure atmosphere, so impregnates every class of society, that one would suppose there was a league formed to abolish the cross of Christ from the minds of men.
What miseries must not follow from this systematic setting aside of the conditions imposed by God upon His creatures?
If the Gospel be the word of infinite Truth, how can men oppose it without drawing down upon themselves the severest chastisements? Would that these chastisements might work the salvation of them that have provoked them!
Let us humble ourselves before the sovereign holiness of our God, and confess our guilt.
The sins of men are increasing both in number and in enormity. The picture we have just drawn is sad enough; what would it have been, had we added such abominations as these, which we purposely excluded: downright impiety; corrupt doctrines, which are being actively propagated throughout the world; dealings with satan, which threaten to degrade our age to the level of pagan times; the conspiracy organized against order, justice, and religion, by secret societies?
Oh! let us unite our prayer with that of holy Church, and say to our God: From Thy wraths deliver us, O Lord!”
-Dom Gueranger, The Liturgical Year (1909).
May 12, 2021