What we have here are reports – reports of Apparitions of the Blessed Virgin by a visionary Ida Peerdaman, from 1945-1959 in the Netherlands.
And throughout the centuries, there are a vast, vast number of such reports, the great majority of which are never approved by the Catholic Church – or indeed singularly condemned.
Amidst a very small percentage of these reports, however, the Catholic Church gives her judgment that the Apparitions in question consist of supernatural origin.
The most famous of such instances include the Apparitions of the Virgin of Guadaloupe, of the Miraculous Medal in the Rue du Bac, of Lourdes and of Fatima.
The most important question with these, then is what is the attitude of the Church in regards to these reported Apparitions from Amsterdam in Holland?
Recently it has become clear that the attitude of the Church has been favourable indeed. On 31 May 2002, the Apparitions received full episcopal approval. A prayer given during the Apparitions has also received approval from the Vatican.
These would seem to be the hallmarks of a positive judgment by the Church. For generally speaking, an Apparition of the Blessed Virgin is investigated and approved (or not in most cases) at the local episcopal level. The fact that these Apparitions have now received episcopal approval places them therefore within a very small percentage of Marian Apparitions which have received a positive response from the Church.
We can turn to these Apparitions trusting that after decades, the judgment of the Church has been positive.
And with this in mind, we turn to reviewing – if such a task is really possible – the book containing Ida Peerdeman’s reports of the Messages she heard, as she beheld the Lady …
For our point of departure, let us start with this lengthy (if slightly abbreviated) account of the 29th Apparition in 1951. The italics have been added by myself – to emphasise themes I wish to draw out as we proceed.
29th MESSAGE – March 28, 1951
Obedience to the Son
I see a bright light and then hear,
“Here I am again, the Lady of All Nations.”
Then I see the Lady before me clearly. She says,
“I am coming only to bring you the following message. Tell your spiritual director that everything is going well like that. But, the Son wants to be obeyed. His will must be carried out.”
The prayer once again
“Look carefully once more at how I look.”
Now it is as if the Lady is coming closer, and she again lets me see everything clearly. Then she says,
“This is how it has to be spread. In the text of the prayer which I recited, nothing may be changed.”
Again the Lady prays the prayer in the same beautiful way and with that heavenly expression:
“Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Father,
send now Your Spirit over the earth.
Let the Holy Spirit live
in the hearts of all nations,
that they may be preserved
from degeneration, disaster and war.
May the Lady of All Nations,
who once was Mary,
be our Advocate.
While the Lady says the prayer, she lets me read it in printed letters. Then I see that the word ‘now’ in the phrase ‘send now Your Spirit’ and the word ‘All’ in ‘the Lady of All Nations’ are underlined.
Then the Lady says,
“‘Who once was Mary’, that stays as it is.”
Era of decline
“Tell your spiritual director further that prudence is good, but the Son is sending me to you to carry out His will. Child, do not be afraid. I stand as the Lady before the Cross, and in this way I wish to be brought back into the world. And you, child, are the instrument, only the instrument.
… Do you know, child, what kind of an era this is?
Throughout the centuries the world has not yet experienced such an era, such a decline of faith; and that is why I want this to be carried out, quickly and without fear.
Tell your spiritual director that in these modern times, in this modern world, which knows so well how to act promptly and quickly in material affairs, it is equally necessary in spiritual matters to act quickly, promptly and in a modern way.”
Rome in danger
Then it is as if I suddenly see Rome before me. I hear the Lady say, as she moves her finger to and fro in disapproval,
“Do you know your laws?”
Then the Lady says to me again,
“Further, tell your spiritual director not to be afraid. He will understand me. For it is I who have chosen him and you to pass this on. Today this is my special message so that action will be taken.
I already told you earlier: the Cross has to be brought back into the world in these years, 51-53.
You do not know what is lying hidden in the future.
You do not realize the great danger facing Rome.
Rome still thinks that she is standing strong, but she is not aware of how she is being undermined. Do you realise how quickly action needs to be taken? …
Do not be afraid
Next the Lady says,
“I move away from the Cross and place myself beside it.”
Now the Lady steps aside, and it is as if I were placed before that large Cross. Again I feel those terrible pains. This lasts a while. Then the Lady takes her place again before the Cross, and says further,
“You shall do what I tell you, child. I will assist you and the others. I want it to be spread in many languages. I will help them in this. Do not be so afraid. Why be afraid regarding the concerns of the Son? Spread this.
Otherwise the world will fall into degeneration. Otherwise the world will destroy itself. Otherwise there will be war upon war and no end to destruction.”
“Rome must know her task in this time. Does Rome realise which enemy is lying in wait and creeping like a snake throughout the world? And by this I do not mean communism alone; other prophets will come––false prophets. That is why those means should be made use of.
I stand as the Lady before the Cross, as the Mother before my Son, Who through the Father entered into me. And this is why I stand before my Son, as the Advocate and bearer of this message to this modern world.”
What have we here?
In the first place, we have the Prayer of the Lady of All Nations that is central to this series of Apparitions.
However, I would draw attention to the underlying context here – the concern that is, for world ‘degeneration, disaster and war’ …
And thus once again, I emphasise these words: ‘Throughout the centuries the world has not yet experienced such an era, such a decline of faith …
Indeed, this theme runs throughout all the visionary experiences of Ida Peerdaman.
And here is place to note that these experiences did not end in 1959, but continued throughout the 1960s, 70s and 80s.
And there, the concern for world degeneration continues, perhaps more pronouncedly.
What Ida Peerdaman experiences then gives witness to a terrible degeneration within the Church Herself, flooding the Second Vatican Council.
These later experiences however are not contained within the present volume, but a companion entitled Eucharistic Experiences. That second volume is reviewed here.
And as a distinct digression from my main theme, I wish to make a frank appeal now to two distinct types of visitors to this website, who might ordinarily not bother with the content of the experiences.
The first type is a certain kind of student of Valentin Tomberg, who appears unconcerned with Tomberg’s deeply traditional stance. The second type I have in mind are Catholic Traditionalists who remain suspicious of the recent episcopal approval of these Apparitions. (If you do not belong to either such group, you may wish to skip to the end of this digression below.)
But my appeal to both these types is to read – if you will – both of these reviews in conjunction – namely this first book of reported experiences before Vatican II and the second review which mainly features visionary experience after the council.
For I believe that taken together, the material collected herein contains much – very much – that can be illumining for the concerns that each of these very different types of reader.
Here I am thinking of the concern for world degeneration, that preoccupies many of the students of Valentin Tomberg.
Here I am thinking of of the concern for the degeneration which preoccupies the attention of Catholic Traditionalists – and all who truly love the Catholic Church. Taken together, the content of these two books can do much I think to illumine both concerns.
But now we end this digression and return to the Messages of the Lady of All Nations itself.
Yes this book is all to do with world degeneration.
Such themes are repeatedly echoed, as we find here in the 35th message of 1951:
‘I see the Lady. She says …
I have said: the world is falling into degeneration. That is why the Father and the Son now sends the Lady back into the world …
The world is falling into degeneration, is in degeneration.
The Netherlands is on the brink of degeneration; that is why I have put my foot on it. From the Netherlands I want to give my words to the world.
My other foot is placed on Germany. Die Mutter Gottes weint über die Kinder Deutschlands. They have always been my children, and that is why, from Germany too, I wish to be brought into the world as the Lady of All Nations.
I shall help you and all who see to this. I even want the outspreading to penetrate into those countries which are cut off from others. There also will the Lady of All Nations give her blessing. See to this; do not hesitate. For I myself never hesitated. I went before the Son on the way to the Cross …
Do you realize, Rome, how much everything is being undermined? Years will pass by, years will elapse. But the more the years, the less faith; the more the years, the greater the apostasy [Emphasis mine].
Now dear Reader above we may note that the message specifically refers to degeneration in the Netherlands and Germany.
However, many countries are addressed in the messages and we would also invoke France here – France, as France constitutes a special focus for this website devoted to his Most Sacred Heart, revealed in France …
Of France, the visionary reported:
‘Now I see that the Lady is pointing at France, and she says,
“France, you will be and have been destroyed in your faith.”
Then I see a red glow coming over France. The Lady continues,
“France, you will––and now I am addressing the great ones––save your country, save it only by bringing the people back to the Cross and Votre Dame. Your people must be brought back to the Lady of All Nations.”
However, it is not merely individual countries which are addressed in this context of degeneration, but degeneration is considered from many different sides as well.
For example the Lady addressed the sexes, in ways that will no doubt trouble the modern mind (a mind that appears degenerate from all the Lady says). As Peerdeman reports in a vision from late 1950:
‘The Lady forms two rows of people. Now I see men standing to her right and women to her left. Then she points at the row of women with a compassionate look on her face. She shakes her head in pity and says, as though addressing those women,
“Do you still know your task? Listen carefully: as a woman is, so is the man. You women, set the example. Return to your womanliness.”
Then she looks at the row of men and says,
“I have one question for you, men: where are the soldiers for Christ? That is all I have to say to you.”
Where are the soldiers of Christ? Now if I may make a very personal interjection here, dear Reader, this question has weighed on me for some time.
For sometime ago, I was in Lourdes, a man and feeling the extraordinary presence and power of Our Lady, which can still be felt in Lourdes and I have to say that when in Lourdes I faced that question, I also had to face my own timidity and cowardice …
Be that as it may, we may see by now that the visionary experiences of Ida Peerdaman are all to do with de-Christianisation, degeneration. And thus they concern the need for the Cross, ’soldiers of Christ’ and Christendom renewed.
There is far, far more to this book. The book contains a rich array of often enigmatic visions and prophecies for the future. Some of these prophecies appear to have been fulfilled. For example.
We cannot possibly do justice to all of this here. Real justice can only be done through a sustained, contemplative reading of the messages of the Lady.
In drawing to a close however, it should be said that the message of the book is not simply dire warnings regarding continued degeneration and dechristianisation.
The book also contains hope – hope for the future of the world.
This hope however is contingent on action from Rome.
For according to the Lady, Rome must act and act soon – to achieve various goals.
These include promoting the prayer given above, as well promoting an image painted of the Lady of All Nations.
Finally, the Lady calls on Rome to promote a fifth and final Marian dogma – the dogma of Mary as co-redemtrix
So much more could be said.
But we will leave off speaking of this volume now.
Still, we want to direct the reader to a companion review of this book’s companion: Eucharistic Experiences.
For this book particularly has much more that echoes many of the major themes in this website.
For here, the Eucharistic Experiences say much of the post-60s, post Vatican II degeneration of the world and the Church.
You can find this companion review here.