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Even though this is a course on the Apparitions of Mary, last week we drew together the prodigies of three images of the Holy Face that have spanned the era from the 1840s to the present. We did this for several reasons. Although I couldn’t quote fifty messages to Sr. Marie St Pierre, Our Lady did speak to her, not just our Lord. And the burden of the Holy Face message concerned the first three commandments, which because the Archbishop took no notice, Sr. Mary St Peter pleaded with Mary to appear to someone in another diocese to make known these messages. Thus, the LaSalette message of our Lady in tears is closely allied with images of Jesus or God the Father shedding tears.

The Apparition of LaSalette is a vital piece in the mosaic, in fact, it could be argued that it forms the central motif. And it deserves more attention in this series than some others, precisely because it’s not well known. The message was unpopular and persecuted, even though it was approved. The sweeter apparition of Lourdes twelve years later would draw devout pilgrims to another mountain town of France, and interest in LaSalette would die down.

Meanwhile the call to reparation which permeates virtually every modern apparition of Jesus and Mary, was taking root in the hearts of Catholics. As we saw last week (02 Holy Face), God raised up St. Therese by allowing her to work thousands of miracles which attracted attention to her “Little Way” which was nothing less than the “way of reparation.” Therese quoted Marie StPierre directly or indirectly many times.

Today we’ll turn our attention to the original public part of the message of LaSalette, and to Maximin, because he represented the end-product of what neglect of religion had done to Catholic France. I have brought together all the English accounts that I could find, as well as a few pieces of information that I gathered when I went to LaSalette last summer. Unfortunately, there is no English biography of his life, but I get the impression that even in French the biographies are sketchy. Maximin did not leave a diary or write many letters. Well let’s begin.

Maximin’s Childhood

Maximin Giraud was born at Corps, on August 26, 1835. It’s in the southeastern part of France high in the Alps not far from Italy. His mother, Anne-Marie Templier died when little “Memin” was only 17 months old. He had one sister from that marriage, Angelique, who was nearly seven years older.

Their father, Germain Giraud, brought in a few francs by fixing wheels on wagons and stagecoaches, but most of his earnings went to alcohol. He “took delight [in his reputation] as one of the heaviest drinkers in Corps.” There was little work in that tiny town in the Alps, so he had plenty of time to indulge in the fine arts, not of culture and Catholicism, but of drink and smoke.

Giraud may have occasionally given his son a demonstration of his wheelwright trade, but for the most part, he was too intoxicated to pay attention to Memin. The boy was never sent to school. He was sent to the streets.

His new stepmother Marie Court chased him into the streets. Embittered by her difficult marriage and the poverty, she slapped and beat the boy, reserving her affection for her own children. By the time of the apparition, when Memin was eleven, he couldn’t read. He spoke only the local dialect (a mixture of Spanish and Italian). About all the French he picked up was “Charité, mon bon Monsieur” when he tried to beg from stray visitors to the town, like stagecoach passengers. No one took him to church. But on his father’s lap in the cabaret, Germain Giraud taught his son the Hail Mary. That was the one prayer Memin knew.

But the townspeople loved him. Memin Giraud was cheerful, sportive, uninhibited. He liked people. He enjoyed the company of almost everyone. He was cheerful and sociable, and easily made friends among the other street urchins of Corps. He was never a thief, despite often going hungry. His trademark became throwing stones at anything and everything. When he was given food, the first portion went to his dog LouLou.

I was able to visit the town of Corps and his own home, which is now a liquor shop. The young man in charge that day was a descendant of one of Maximin’s nephews. Like Memin, he had a mop of black hair, large dark eyes, and a complexion that was more Mediterranean than the fair skin of northern France. He was slight of build and medium height. The nephew further resembled Memin by his kindness, his ready smile and his willingness to share information. He told us something that I’ve never read in any book. He said that the townspeople believed immediately in the children’s story about having seen Our Lady, because on the day of the apparition, when Melanie and Memin were walking home from the pasture, witnesses were astonished to hear them conversing in Latin. That sign, and the reputation that both children had for honesty, gave nearly instant credibility to the locals.

Memin’s home was among many that were crowded around the church and plaza. No yards, narrow streets. It was a two-minute walk to Melanie’s house, but the two children were no more acquainted with each other than with the nearby church. Melanie was the “Cinderella” of her household. From the age of six she had been hired out as a servant, babysitter or shepherdess to various poor families higher up in the Alps.

Until his death at 39, Memin would bear the signs of his harsh childhood. Psychologically he was unstable. He found it difficult to concentrate. He was forever fidgeting, twirling his hat or racing around. The nuns call him “perpetual motion.”

His fragile health, due to long years of malnutrition, led to his early death.

Solitude, Adoption

So how did this street kid end up in the pasture on LaSalette with Melanie on the day of the Apparition? A shepherd was sick, so his employer went down to Corps in search of a replacement to hire someone for a week. He struck a bargain with Germain who insisted that Memin take the family goat to pasture it also. So on a September Monday, accompanied by his dog LouLou and the goat, Memin set out for the house in the town of Ablandins in the parish of LaSalette. He was sent to one pasture in the first part of the week, then on Friday to another area, the common ground, an unfenced area where anyone could pasture. On that morning Melanie’s employers had sent her there also. Thus, the children met for the first time.

Like Francisco of Fatima, Maximin did not see Mary’s face during the Apparition. Francisco was told that he must first pray many Rosaries. Later on, he was able to see her, but he never heard her voice. Lucia and Jacinta would relate the message to him afterward. The blazing light dazzled Memin. He could see all of her person, from her feet up to her chin, and from the middle of her forehead to her crown, but not her face. Perhaps She shielded him from beholding her tears, lest this poor motherless boy imagine that She was displeased with him.

After the Apparition

After the apparition, pilgrims began arriving from all over France and beyond. Naturally, they wanted to speak to the two visionaries. Sisters of Providence ran an orphanage for girls near Corps, but they took in both Maximin and Melanie to protect them from becoming totally besieged, and to give them a rudimentary education. Memin’s sweet temper, his generosity and his constant kindness endeared him to many. He was always completely detached from the things of the world. When people thrust gifts and money upon him, he passed them quickly to the Sisters or the next visitors.

Memin’s father was converted by the Apparition of LaSalette, as were so many in Corps. He became devout and attended Sunday Mass, but he did not live long. Within three years following the Apparition, Memin’s father, his step-mother and his half-brother Jean-Francóis, all died. His uncle, his mother’s brother, became Memin’s guardian.

Memin stayed with the Sisters for four years. When Memin was sixteen, a group of men took him on a pilgrimage to Ars. Memin was adventurous and longed to experience life beyond his small town and the orphanage. But these men were royalists who wanted the monarchy restored. They were hoping that the Secret of LaSalette had to do with the French royal family and perhaps the boy knew what had happened to little Louis XVII, who had vanished from sight when his father and Marie Antoinette were guillotined. They hoped that the Curé would get Memin to confide his Secret to him. But they gave Memin the idea that they were taking him to get advice on his vocation.

In those days, people had to wait several days in line to go to confession to the famous Curé. So Memin and his gentlemen friends were received by the assistant, Fr. Raymond, who did not believe in LaSalette. M. Raymond rudely insinuated that the story of LaSalette was a lie. The boy, irritated and tired from the trip, gave his usual answer to those who doubted: “Well, if you like, put it down that I have told a lie and have seen nothing.” This answer undoubtedly did not make a good impression on Fr. Raymond, and he reported the conversation to the Cure d’Ars.

When Memin had a private interview with St. John Vianney, Memin still knew little French and the Curé did not know the Spanish/Italian dialect. Furthermore, John Vianney had few teeth left and he was difficult to understand. The conversation did not go well. It seems the Cure d’Ars got the impression that Memin had lied about the Apparition. Memin said afterward that he had admitted to telling lies, but “I meant my little lies to the parish priest of Corps when I did not wish to tell him where I was going, or when I did not want to learn my lessons.”

Before this, St. John Vianney had been an excited believer in the apparition, but now he was distraught. For eight years he ceased autographing pictures and blessing medals of Our Lady of LaSalette. Finally, he found peace when he asked two specific favors from Our Lady of LaSalette. Both were granted and his faith was restored. He once again encouraged pilgrims to go to LaSalette, but the damage had been done. In the minds of many, LaSalette would remain under a doubtful shadow.

Seminary

At seventeen, Maximin thought he might have a vocation to the priesthood. Over time he tried three different seminaries but never persevered. Every book I’ve read states that the problem was Memin. He was unstable; he couldn’t concentrate on his studies; he didn’t have sufficient intelligence. But when I was in France there was a strong oral tradition that Memin was quite serious about his vocation, that’s why he entered three different seminaries, but the problem was the Secret confided to him by Our Lady of LaSalette. Superiors in the seminary would not allow him to advance in his studies unless he would agree to tell the Secret. We have to bear in mind the class divisions within France. Memin was despised for being on the lowest rung of the ladder. He was looked down upon by the educated and the wealthy who felt they had a right to control him. He left the seminary life and gave up his aspirations to the priesthood.

Memin meandered throughout France trying to find decent employment. Some say his poor understanding of mathematics disqualified him for many jobs. He evidently studied medicine, but eventually gave up hope of becoming a doctor. Where did he find the funds for his studies? What cities did he live in? How did he live? Did anyone write a detailed chronicle of his life? The times were very unstable in Europe with wars and revolutions happening all the time. At one point Memin joined the Pontifical Troops to defend the Pope, but he didn’t have the health for a military career.

The gift of prophecy

About 1866 he was befriended by a wealthy couple from Paris. Monsieur and Madame Jourdain had come to LaSalette as pilgrims. When they met Memin, they became very fond of him. They cleared his debts and adopted him as their own son. In 1870 Memin was drafted during the war with the Prussians and assigned to Fort Barrau in Grenoble. He frantically tried to reach the Jourdains who had returned to Paris. He knew they were in great danger. He sent letter after letter. Madame Jourdain came to him, then after more urgent messages, Monsieur Jourdain came. Mr. Jourdain found out afterwards that his train had been the last one allowed out of the city before the arrival of the Prussians. A few weeks later Memin said to Madame Jourdain, “Poor mother, your beautiful home on the outskirts of Paris is reduced to rubble. Everything is destroyed.” “Who destroyed it, the Prussians?” she asked. “No,” he said, “it was burned by the Parisian rabble.” It was six months before the Jourdains could get any word from Paris. But when they did, they found out that Memin was right. Their home had been burned just when he said, and burned by the Parisians, not the Prussians.

Another prophecy, that everyone remembered, was made during a conversation with Monsignor Darboy, the Archbishop of Paris. On December 4, 1868, the Archbishop said to Memin [and this gives you an idea of the state of the clergy in France] “I do not believe in the Apparition of LaSalette.” “Well, Monsignor, since you do not want to believe in LaSalette, will you believe me when I tell you that one day you will be shot?” In 1871, on the way to his execution at the prison of the Roquette, Monsignor Darboy turned to his entourage and said, “Maximin told me that I would be shot.”

Faithful witness

Wherever he went, even in undevout circles, Maximin was the celebrated visionary of LaSalette. People watched him and he edified them as a faithful witness. In seminary life he edified one of his priest-tutors by his request that they say the full fifteen decades of the Rosary together at night. In soldier life, he had a distaste for jokes, even slightly off-color. The racy talk of soldiers was not for him. He never indulged in it, and, when he chanced to overhear it, it palpably disgusted him. “His heart remained always worthy of the Blessed Virgin,” said his friend in the barracks, “and was never soiled.” In Paris, when it was suggested that he join in picking up street-walkers, Memin was horrified.

Homeless and itinerant, he spoke everywhere of the Apparition, in his journeys in Italy, his stayed in one or another part of France. He made known, to as many people as he met, what he had seen and heard at LaSalette. He never got away from poverty and a humble station. Memin said “Our Lady left me as I was.”

Bishop Ullathorne’s Account of Memin’s Recital of the Apparition

On the re-establishment of the hierarchy in England and Wales, William Bernard Ullathorne, who had taken vows as a Benedictine in Downside Abbey, became the first Roman Catholic Bishop of the Diocese of Birmingham. During his four decades of tenure (1847-1888) 67 new churches, 32 convents and nearly 200 mission schools were built. In 1854 he embarked on a pilgrimage to LaSalette, a difficult adventure in those days which required crossing the English channel, crossing France in horse-drawn carriages, then ascending the Alps with the help of mules. English Catholics were excited about the apparition in France, and he published a book for them in English. It’s especially precious because he went there in the early days and was able to personally interview the children.

His little book is available on the internet and I’ll upload it to the website. A lot of it describes his travels, so I’ll concentrate on his interview with Maximin, and Maximin’s employers. The first employers deposed:

“Maximin came to the [village of] Ablandins on the 14th of September, 1846. He went on that day and the following days to guard four cows in my property on the top of the mountain Aux Baisses, a little distant from the summit, where the Cross has recently been planted. The whole of that slope belonged to private proprietors. But the commune of LaSalette possesses the property of the level, on which the events passed of which Maximin and Melanie speak.

Since I feared little Maximin might not be careful enough of the cows, and they might easily fall into one of the numerous ravines, I went and worked in that field [that is, on the opposite slope], on Monday the 14th, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday of that week. I declare that during all these days I never lost the boy out of sight . . . On Friday, the 18th, I saw him playing with little Melanie Matthieu, who guarded the cows of Baptiste Pra, my neighbor, whose field joined mine. . . . I never saw them together before. They both went very early Friday morning to their fields, and did not return until night, when, after having their suppers, they went to bed.

On Saturday, the 19th, I returned to my field, as usual, with little Maximin. Towards eleven o’clock, or half-past eleven, in the morning, I told him to take the cows to the spring on the level, that is, the spring on the north side of the mountain. The child then said, ‘I will go and call Melanie Matthieu, and we will go together.’ On that day, he did not return to me in the field after taking the cows to drink. I only saw him again that night at the house, when he brought them back to the sheds. I then said to him: ‘Why, Maximin, didn’t you come back to me in the field?” He said to me, ‘You don’t know what has happened? I found by the stream a beautiful lady, who talked to me and Melanie a long time. I was afraid at first; I did not dare to fetch my bread which was by her, but She said to us; “Fear not, my children; come near; I am here to tell you great news.” And the child then recited to me what he has so often repeated ever since to all who question him upon it.”

Bishop Ullathorne

Thus, concluded the employer’s testimony. The bishop then introduces the public apparition:

The 19th of September 1846, fell on a Saturday. It was also the eve of the Festival of our Lady of the Seven Dolors. Maximin and Melanie, conducting their cows, came down together from the mountain of LaSalette upon the level, or terrace, called Sous les Baisses. [literally “under the drops” and we can say the droplets of her tears]. The day was serene, the sky cloudless, the sun shone brilliantly. It was about mid-day, for they heard the distant sound of the Angelus bell. They took their provisions and ate them by the side of a little spring, called ales hammes, [patois?] on the right of the little stream called Sezia. When they had finished their repast they descended, crossed the stream, and laid down their bags separately, near the place where another spring sometimes flowed, but was at that time dry, though soon to become forever famous. They descended a few more paces, and then, contrary to their usual habits, as they afterwards said, they lay down at a little distance from each other, and fell asleep. Melanie awoke first, and not seeing the cows, she awoke Maximin. They then crossed the stream together, ascended in a straight line to the opposite ground, and, on turning round, saw the cows lying on a gentle slope of Mount Gargas. They were about to return towards the dried-up spring to pick up their bags, when they saw a bright and dazzling light.

Bishop Ullathorne

Here we will give Maximin’s recital:

After we had given drink to our cows, and eaten our meal, we fell asleep beside the little stream, close by a little dried-up spring. Melanie awoke first, and she awoke me, to go and look after our cows. We went to look for our cows, and on turning round, we saw them lying on the other side of the mountain. Then, as we were coming down, Melanie saw a great brightness on towards the spring, and she said to me, ‘Maximin, come and see this brightness.’ I went towards Melanie, then we saw the brightness open, and within it we saw a Lady sitting like this, (Maximin sits down, with his elbows on his knees, and his face in his hands) and we were afraid. And Melanie said, ‘Oh my God!’ and she let her stick fall. And I said to her, ‘Keep your stick, do; I will take care of mine; if it does anything to us, I will give it a good whack.’

And the Lady rose up, crossed her arms, and said to us: ‘Come near, my children, fear not; I am here to tell you great news.’ And we felt no more fear; then we went forward, and crossed the stream, and the Lady came towards us, for a few steps, from where She was seated, and She said to us:

Here Maximin recounts the words of the Lady in nearly the same words as Melanie.

If my people do not wish to submit themselves, I will be compelled to let go of the hand of my Son. It is so heavy and weighs me down so much I can no longer keep hold of it.

For how long a time I have suffered for the rest of you! If I do not wish my Son to abandon you, I must take it upon myself to entreat Him ceaselessly. And the rest of you, you think little of this. In vain you will pray, in vain you will act, you will never be able to make up for the troubles I have taken for the rest of you.

I gave you six days for work. I kept the seventh for myself, and no one wishes to grant it me. This is what weighs down so much the arm of my Son.

Those who drive carts cannot swear without putting the name of my Son in the middle. These are the two things which weigh down so much the arm of my Son.

If the harvest is spoiled, it is only because of the rest of you. I made you see this last year with the potatoes. You took little account of this. On the contrary, when you found decayed potatoes, you swore oaths, and you included the name of my Son. They will continue to go bad; by Christmas there will be none left.

At this point I was trying to interpret the word “potatoes” (pommes de terre in French); I thought I understood it to be apples (pommes). The beautiful and good Lady, reading my thoughts, repeated thus: “You do not understand, my children? I will tell it to you another way.”

[Then She repeated her message in the dialect of the district which was a mixture of Spanish, French and Italian.]

If the harvest is spoiled, it is only because of the rest of you. I made you see this last year with the potatoes. You took little account of this. On the contrary, when you found decayed potatoes, you swore oaths, and you included the name of my Son. They will continue to go bad; by Christmas there will be none left.

If you have wheat you must not sow it. The insects will eat all that you sow. And all that springs up will fall to dust when you thresh it. A great famine will come.

Before the famine comes, children under the age of seven will begin to tremble, and will die in the arms of those who hold them. The others will do penance through hunger. The walnuts will go bad; the grapes will become rotten.

If they convert, the stones and rocks will change into wheat, and potatoes will be found sown in the earth.

Do you say your prayers well, my children?

We both replied, “Not very well, Madame.”

Oh! my children, you must say them well, morning and evening. When you can do no more, say a Pater [Our Father] and an Ave Maria [Hail Mary]; and when you have the time to do better, you will say more.

Only a few old women go to Mass; the rest work all day Sunday in the summer; and in the winter, when they are at a loose end, they only go to Mass to make fun of religion. During Lent, they go to the butcher’s like hungry dogs.

Have you ever seen any spoiled wheat, my children?

We both answered: “Oh no, Madame.” The Holy Virgin turned to Maximin, saying:

But you, my child, you must have seen some once near Coin, with your father. The farmer said to your father: “Come and see how my wheat has gone bad!” You went to see. Your father took two or three ears in his hand, rubbed them, and they fell to dust. Then, on your way back, when you were no more than half an hour away from Corps, your father gave you a piece of bread, and said: “Take it, eat it while you can, my son, for I don’t know who will be eating any next year if the wheat is spoilt like that!”

Maximin replied, “It’s quite true, Madame, I didn’t remember.” [Other accounts say that every time Memin related this part of the story he was visibly astonished that our Lady knew what he and his father had said that day.]

The Most Holy Virgin gave them each a Secret, and brought her speech to an end in French, not the patois.

And so, my children, you will make this known to all my people.

The most beautiful Lady crossed the stream, and after two more steps, without turning back towards us, who were following her She repeated to us:

And so, my children, you will make this known to all my people.

“Then She ascended some fifteen paces, gliding over the herbage as if She were suspended and moved on by other hands; her feet only touched the top of the herbage. We followed her up the ascent. Melanie passed before the Lady, and I to one side, at a distance of two or three paces.

Before She disappeared, this beautiful Lady rose up like this. (Maximin marks with his hands an elevation of about a yard and a half.) She remained suspended thus in the air a moment, then we saw her head no more, then the arms no more, then the rest of the body no more; She seemed to melt away. And then there remained a great light, which I tried to catch with my hands, as well as the flowers She had at her feet; but there was nothing there.

“And Melanie said to me, ‘It must be a great saint.’ And I said to her, ‘ If we had known it was a great saint, we would have asked her to take us with her.’ Afterwards we felt great satisfaction, and we spoke of all we had seen, and then we looked after our cows. At night, when we had got home to our masters, I was a little sad [because of Mary’s sorrow]; and as they asked what was the matter with me, I told them all that this Lady had said to me.”

Q.–Tell me, Maximin, when did the Lady give you your secret?

A.–After She had said, “The grapes will rot, and the walnuts will become bad.” Then the Lady said something to me in French, and said, “You shall not say this, nor this, nor this.” . She also kept silence for a short time; it seemed to me that She was speaking to Melanie.

Q.–What o’clock was it when you woke and saw the Lady?

A.–It was about two or three o’clock.

The London Times [a very secular newspaper] admitted that the children were not the deceivers. During the apparition Maximin was as restless as he always is. He was as free from human respect. He kept to his stick. If it did anything, he would give it a good knock. He took his hat off his head, and twirled it on his stick, and put it on again. With the end of his stick he sent the pebbles rolling about. Various thoughts passed through his head. He says he had heard talk of sorceresses, and he thought She might be a sorceress. Then, when the beautiful Lady spoke of the heavy arm of her Son, he thought She meant that her son had been beating her; for as he later explained, he “did not then know that the Lady was the Blessed Virgin.” He said at another time, that though he knew there was a Blessed Virgin, yet he did not know at that time who She was.

Let’s comment on what She says:

If my people do not wish to submit themselves,

I found a very good blog written by a German who commented on “submit.” How common it is that when rebellion is in the air, there is a lack of humility.

I will be compelled to let go of the hand of my Son. It is so heavy and weighs me down so much I can no longer keep hold of it.

Here we have her mediation. She is pleading for us. She is in heaven concerned about us. She is interceding for our salvation.

For how long a time I have suffered for the rest of you! If I do not wish my Son to abandon you, I must take it upon myself to entreat Him ceaselessly. And the rest of you, you think little of this. In vain you will pray, in vain you will act, you will never be able to make up for the troubles I have taken for the rest of you.

“The rest of you.” Repeated several times. Very enigmatic expression. English translators don’t know what to do with it, but in fact it’s not really normal French either. I think She is not addressing the children or the devout “but the rest;” her harsh words were for others.

I gave you six days for work. I kept the seventh for myself, and no one wishes to grant it me. This is what weighs down so much the arm of my Son.

Many take exception to “I gave you six days.” How could Mary say that She gave us six days for work? This sounds blasphemous to some people. But this was prophetic language. Elijah had said to Ahab,

As the Lord the God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall be neither dew nor rain these years, except by the word of my mouth.

1Kings 17:1

Yahweh uses his prophets as his instruments. They are his mouthpieces. So, it gets mixed up at times as to who is the first person or who is the second person.

Then She goes on.

Those who drive carts cannot swear without putting the name of my Son in the middle. These are the two things which weigh down so much the arm of my Son.

Two things She says, and yet it comprises all three first three commandments: Blaspheming the Name violates the first “I am the Lord thy God, thou shall not have strange gods before me” and the second commandment, “You shall not take the name of God in vain.” If you’re taking his name in vain you are not worshiping God, but the other idols going on in your life. Then the third commandment, is keeping holy the sabbath day.

If the harvest is spoiled, it is only because of the rest of you. I made you see this last year with the potatoes. You took little account of this. On the contrary, when you found decayed potatoes, you swore oaths, and you included the name of my Son. They will continue to go bad; by Christmas there will be none left.

Before the famine comes, children under the age of seven will begin to tremble, and will die in the arms of those who hold them. The others will do penance through hunger. The walnuts will go bad; the grapes will become rotten.”

If you have wheat you must not sow it. The insects will eat all that you sow. And all that springs up will fall to dust when you thresh it. A great famine will come.

Now the question is: Was She talking about an imminent famine or did this have to do with the rest of the Secret which has to do with the latter times? I think multiple fulfillments can apply here. There were famines going on at the time, but not so dramatic as what is described here, especially the trembling sickness. It may have to do with seizures. We have so many children suffering seizures today. Brain seizures, autism, poisonous things in our atmosphere, vaccines affect especially children.

Here is a quotation from the Appendix of a new edition of Bishop Ullathorne’s work:

Historical records strikingly bear out the fact of the fulfillment of these dire predictions made by our Blessed Mother at LaSalette, events which the two ignorant children were in nowise able to foresee.

Certainly famine came to France and many other countries in a few years after the apparition. The French newspaper “Constitutionnel” in March 1856, commented: “Though a complete list of the deaths for the year 1855 has not yet been brought to our knowledge, by the results already known, we are led to believe that the year will show an extraordinary increase of mortality, of at least eighty thousand persons, whose deaths were caused by the continuation of the high price of food.” This “high price of food” meant simply that nearly a hundred thousand people had died of starvation.

The same newspaper gave the number of the famine victims in 1854, as sixty thousand. In 1856, the number rose higher still. So, “the high price of food,” to use the words of the “Constitutionnel”, caused at least 250,000 deaths from 1854 to 1856, in France alone. And to say that, during these three years, as many as one million persons became victims of starvation throughout Europe, is to fall short of the reality.

As to Ireland, where the famine was severest, we have only to read the speech of Queen Victoria, at the opening of the English Parliament, January 19, 1847, to see that there, the very year of the Apparition, the loss of the potato crop was the cause of cruel suffering and of a terrible increase of the mortality rate.

The Holy Mountain of LaSalette by Bishop William Ullathorne, centenary edition © 2000, Appendix D The Prophecies and Their Fulfillment

Millions died in Ireland [actually 1 million], which is why we have so many today in America. They could not find work or food because the famine kept going on. They hopped on ships that were very dangerous. They called them “coffin ships” because so many of them sank. But they were desperate. So there was some fulfillment of the prophecy, but Mary said:

A great famine will come. . The insects will eat all that you sow. [Don’t even bother planting it.] And all that springs up will fall to dust when you try to harvest it.

So it seems that something else is going on here.

The others will do penance through hunger. The walnuts will go bad; the grapes will become rotten.

They will survive but they will be hungry.

If they convert, the stones and rocks will change into wheat, and potatoes will be found sown in the earth.

Now the Book of the Apocalypse which we are studying in tandem with this course, will talk of famine, of course. So I think this could be on the horizon.

The First Three Commandments

I’d like to sum up the first three commandments to tie them in with what we talked about last week (02 Holy Face)

1st Commandment: God the Father

“I am the Lord thy God, thou shalt not have any strange gods before Me.”

Dragon = Satan

That ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world

Rev 12:9

And the devil took Jesus up, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, . . . If you, then, will worship me, it shall all be your.

Luke …

The Holy Face appeared very sorrowful at the Vatican during prayers for the exiled Holy Father

2nd Commandment: God the Son

Blasphemies of the Holy Name

“Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.”

Black Beast from the Sea

It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling, that is, those who dwell in heaven.

The Holy Face of the Shroud of Jesus at Turin

3rd Commandment: God the Holy Spirit

“Remember to keep holy the Sabbath day.”

The Beast Like a Lamb: It exercises all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and makes the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast

The Holy Face of Manoppello: the airy byssus veil with the elusive facial expression.

The Holy Spirit urges us to “remember!”

This apparition of LaSalette is timely is on many levels. This is the first “installment.”

Additional comments after the original YouTube talk

I forgot to mention Memin’s final days. In November 1874, Memin made a pilgrimage to the shrine. In the presence of a rapt audience he repeated the story of LaSalette as he had done on the very first day. This would be the last time. He is not well. On February 2nd he visits the parish church, also for the last time.

Memin had no worldly goods to bequeath anyone but he wrote a last testimony. When I was in France I was able to hold the original and scan it. I’ll upload the PDF on the website:

“In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. I believe in all that the holy, apostolic, Roman Church teaches, in everything defined by our Holy Father, the Pope, the august and infallible Pius IX. I firmly believe, even were it to cost the Shedding of my blood, in the renowned apparition of the Blessed Virgin on the holy mountain of LaSalette, September 19, 1846, the apparition to which I have testified in words, in writings, and in suffering. After my death let no one assert that he has heard me make any retraction concerning the great event of LaSalette, for in lying to the world he would be lying in his own breast. With these sentiments, I give my heart to Our Lady of LaSalette.”.

During the evening of March 1st, (1874), a priest came to here Memin’s confession and give him Holy Communion and the last Sacrament. To help him swallow the host, he took a few drops of water from the miraculous fountain at LaSalette. Five minutes later he died. He had not reached forty. At his request he was buried in the cemetery of Corps, but his heart was sent to the LaSalette basilica.