THERE is a personal grace in this writing, as well as, since it is written under obedience and in fidelity to the duty of the moment, a grace for you whose eyes fall upon these words in this moment.



The Spirit tells my heart to give a glimpse of the grace so others might come to trust Him.

The glimpse I am moved to give is simply this: it is part of the original satanic lie hissed to Adam and Eve that there will come a moment in our lives when God abandons us.

The truth is, it is we who deny Him a place within us, and we deny the truth He is with us.

We abandon Him.

Indeed in so doing we abandon our true self.

That is why, among many reasons, hopefully by now most of them self-evident, I keep mentioning that this writing is NOT so much the story of my particular life, as it is the proclamation, the account of the persistence, the tender, faithful, relentless, seeking, calling, inviting, all-loving, redemptive, activity in the soul, mine, yours, of the Blessed Trinity, through the mystery of Jesus, the reality of Jesus, He whose Incarnation, Passion, Death, Resurrection makes real the fact of our being, and of our being beloved children of the Father.

The true teacher here is NOT this neurotic, sinful priest commanded to write.

I have been given the grace to understand, a grace of insight, as never before in my life how so much evil came to pass within my life.

The gift of conversion and healing entails such struggle.

 Often too there is much resistance until finally grace overcomes what holds us in bondage, layer after deeper layer, after deeper layer, until it is finished — usually at the moment when we are laid deep, deep in the earth under layers of earth when we have come finally to surrender to Love!

One of the great spiritual tragedies of internecine warfare within the Church today is rooted in the refusal of many of Her children, especially bishops and priests, the teachers and shepherds, to accept the clear truth of the Holy Gospel.

This is particularly so when it comes to denying the reality of satan and his permitted assault on the followers of Christ, and the constitutive reality of sin and its aftermath.


When a soul comes to the priest for instruction, seeking truth, and is told such things as satan, mortal sin, hell, etc. are medieval notions best left aside by we enlightened moderns, the soul is relentlessly pushed back by such fatherly betrayal into the very clutches of evil, evil which the soul had come to the priest to be delivered from.

The more priests refrain from truth-speaking, from exercising our ordained paternal authority to enlighten, encourage, absolve, deliver, the firmer the grip of the evil one upon the person of the child of God, upon their very soul, upon the entire world.

Factually the abomination of the desolation occurs within the soul, the living temple of the Holy Spirit, more horrifically than anything we can image in an external structure.

This occurs when souls are denied sacramental solace by priests who have surrendered truth of faith to the illusion of modern scepticism.

This loss of faith/refusal to believe, by priests, results from the failure of priests themselves to approach each other for spiritual direction, authentic confession of sins, humble supplication for healing of interior neurotic wounds, those bitter roots and inner vows which form the sins of our youth, and unhanded over to Christ, hobble our adulthood.

Scripture is filled with stark descriptions of the hobbled soul in bondage to disorder and sin: Dn.9:27; 11:31. Often these passages are narrowly understood as end time prophecies, but everything in Scripture has a personal aspect to it, a teaching for us or a warning: Mk.13:14; Mt.24:15.

I have long wondered what my own personal ‘original’ sin was, how I came to close myself off to the activity and voice of the Holy Spirit, to allow the one who should never stand within my being enter as abomination and render me desolate.

How could this happen, or rather how could I choose this at such a tender age?

Why, within a few hours of arriving back in the city of my youth did I seek out a particular place, as if going to a shrine?

I’D BEEN back in the city but a day or so when this compulsion overtook me, with relative ease as I recall, that I should seek out a particular place, a place of horrific death in the last century, a place which was no mere place but more a thing, a living thing consecrated to death, the hanging tree.

I am deeply aware of the danger in writing about evil spirits, satan, the devil, demons, all names for the same spirits of evil, cast from heaven (Rv.12) because of their free-will, irredeemable sin against the Holy Triune God.

The danger is not merely to myself, but to others if this writing triggers extremely dangerous curiosity.

Or an equally disordered scepticism.

So as I write these lines I am in constant prayer for the protection of Our Lady and St. Michael the Archangel, for inspiration from the Holy Fathers and Doctors of the Church, so that I write truth, truth which is cautionary for souls.

CHRIST is a witness. He came down from heaven to destroy the work of the devil, that is, sin (1Jn.3:8). This is why He is called ‘the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world (Jn.1:29). Who can explain or even imagine all that Christ suffered to destroy the work of the devil and to satisfy perfectly the justice of God? ‘Though He was by nature God, He emptied Himself, taking the nature of a slave ‘(Phil.2:6). ‘Being rich, He became poor for our sakes ‘(2Cor.8:9). He ‘had nowhere to lay His head ‘(Lk.9:58), although He made heaven and earth. ‘He came into His own, and His own received Him not ‘(Jn.1:11). ‘When He was reviled He did not revile, when He suffered, did not threaten, but yielded Himself up to him who judged Him unjustly; who Himself bore our sins in His body upon the tree ‘(1Pet.2:23, 24). ‘He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even death on the cross ‘(Phil.2:8). ‘By His stripes we were healed ‘(1Pet.2:24). At last mocked, spit upon, scourged, crowned with thorns, crucified in complete shame and excruciating pain, He poured out all His Blood and His Life. He bore all this to destroy the works of the devil and wipe out our sin. [an]


Places where there has been, things used for, in either the ancient or near past, violent death, occult activity, blasphemy, satanic ritual, unless these places, things, are reclaimed for Christ, in Christ, through Christ, by the power of His Redeeming Cross, Blood, Name, such places and things will remain cesspools, swamps, bogs, of devouring evil.

There is a defined limit to the movement and power of the evil one and his minions as is attested to by Sacred Scripture and Church teaching, which we should never forget because it is as seriously dangerous to over-estimate the power of evil as it is to under-estimate same.

Scripture shows us the limits the Lord Himself has placed upon the evil one [Jb. 1:6-12; 2:6], as well as the fear evil spirits have in the presence of Jesus [Mk. 1:23, 24], and the power Jesus has over them [Mk. 5: 9, 10 & 12].

The Church herself in her Catechism teaches:

The devil and the other demons were indeed created naturally good by God, but they    became evil by their own doing……{# 391 CCC*} Scripture speaks of a sin of these angels. This ‘ fall ‘ consists in the free choice of these created spirits, who radically and irrevocably rejected God and His reign…..The devil ‘ has sinned from the beginning ‘; he is ‘ a liar and the father of lies ‘. {# 392 CCC*}

 The power of satan is, nonetheless, not infinite…It is a great mystery that Providence should permit diabolical activity, but ‘ we know that in everything God works for good with those who love Him. {# 395 *Catechism of the Catholic Church}


The evil one then can only suggest, what is accurately called ‘tempt’ the soul, us, to sin, to choose against God’s love for us.

Satan CANNOT make a soul commit a sin.

We have free will and must, in order to sin, freely choose to follow the evil idea, in a word to cooperate with the evil one.

The imminent danger in minor cooperation with evil, known as venial sin, is the progressive weakening of our free will and the increased predisposition of our will towards greater evil, known as mortal sin, the deadly sinning which, persisted in, leads necessarily towards such a distortion of our freedom that in extreme cases we will hand our will over to satan, i.e. become actually in bondage to, if not possessed by, an evil spirit.

We, I, You, and no one else bear the responsibility for our choices and the repercussions of those choices.

True, the sins of others against us may, because of the severity of the impact of the sin against us, damage our notion of self, weakening our will, our emotional stability, render it more facile for us to choose evil and more of a struggle to choose good. Nonetheless, we remain with a free will and therefore responsible for the choices we make.

In this spiritual warfare we have the person, the victory, of Christ Himself as our encouragement. Through His Passion and Death, His Redemption of us, by the power of the Holy Spirit operative in the Sacraments, especially of Baptism, Confession, Holy Communion, we have the forgiveness of our sins, the grace to begin, with God, anew, moment by moment to choose the life of goodness over the death of evil.

Christ’s own struggle with the evil one is amply attested in the Holy Gospels, very dramatically at the outset of His public life in Matthew 4:1-11.

Another example from Matthew of the struggle with evil, which illustrates both that which occurred within my soul during my monastic years, and what happened to me when I returned to the city.

The passage is found in Matthew 12:43-45 and illustrates the true conversion is not just the action of Jesus setting us free but what happens if we fail to live in the reality of conversion. We cannot be passive!

When I returned home from the monastery I had within me a closed heart, a shutting down of my baptized self, soul, mind, heart, will, towards any and all activity of God within me.

Now partially this was due to the fact that while, through entrance into and life within the monastic vocation I had, in a true sense, been freed of the evil I had clung to prior to my monastic life, and thus to a real degree the house of my soul was indeed tidied and swept clean, I had not invited Christ to occupy the house of my being.

Because there had been no work done to deal with the ‘why’ of my previous life of sin, there had been no invitation to Christ to fully occupy my being.

This thus enabled those tendril roots to spread and grow, to become eventually the returned evil spirit with his legion of seven worse than him. They occupied the place within me which belongs to Christ but which was empty of Him because I had never invited Him to enter. Even when I sometimes desperately went through the motions I never trusted He actually would enter as the fullness of my being.

The means by which I sustained the new occupants within me was to deliberately silence the voice of my conscience, which in fact means I deliberately chose to ignore, to render myself deaf and oblivious to, the voice of the Holy Spirit.

…..the conscience is ‘the most secret core and sanctuary of a man, where he is alone with God, whose voice echoes in his depths ‘. It ‘can…speak to his heart more specifically: do this, shun that ‘. This capacity to command what is good and to forbid evil, placed in man by the Creator, is the main characteristic of the personal subject. But at the same time, ‘in the depths of his conscience, man detects a law which he does not impose upon himself, but which holds him to obedience ‘. The conscience therefore is not an independent and exclusive capacity to decide what is good and what is evil. Rather there is profoundly imprinted upon it a principle of obedience…..the conscience is the ‘secret sanctuary ‘ in which ‘ God’s voice echoes ‘. The conscience is ‘the voice of God ‘….[ao]


The result of remaining an empty house upon my return from the monastery, and the result of my free will choice to remain empty, was of my being seized by an urgent need to seek out that place of the hanging tree and, frankly, the tree itself, to touch it, feel its raw bark against my cheek, to hopefully find there the original lad, the one who though he had held me in bondage, had tortured me and beaten me when I wanted someone else, and from whose grasp I illusory supposedly had escaped, been free of while in the monastery. This need for him seized me urgently still with an intensity as if it had never left me…which it hadn’t in the bitter, deep rooted depths of my being.

It was that lad who had first introduced me to this place, this thing of dark, cruel, death. It was within its shadow that I consciously committed my first mortal sin in the clutch of that same lad.

Though I myself was but a lad at the time, I was old enough to choose.

 I chose death, darkness, evil.

I choose immediate gratification over trust and waiting upon the Lord.

Now I was returning to that thing, to distrust.

I have no patience with those who advance dubious evidence to suggest, actually to propose, as excuse and justification for activities, the origins of, sexual deviance, homosexual or otherwise, as being irrevocably bound up in the genetic roots of persons.

Even if that were so, as language skill is bound up within those same genetic roots, someone has to loosen the skill, teach the child to talk by first speaking to, and with, the child.

Patterns of behaviour are learned, from those who are already practitioners.

The informing and forming practitioner need not necessarily be an adult, they may be a peer, but, if only the truth would be told, when it comes to sexual deviance, sooner or later within the scope of promiscuity of all kinds will be found elements, if not overt practices of, black oracles, occult activity, satanic games, pornography, mind/mood altering drugs, abuse of power, use of violence and, of course, recourse to being habitués of places like the hanging tree.

This was the world, the world of the dark, the lost, deaf, blind, addicted, the habitués of the underbelly of cities, the corridors of political, social, philosophical, ethical, eventually even theological manipulation to achieve an evil agenda, the agenda of the licentious, that I was seeking to enter as surely, if not at the time as clearly aware as I am able to be in retrospect, as I sought out the place of the hanging tree.

Found there the place from which to suspend the last vestiges of dignity and conscience.

I DON’T WANT TO. I know I should, but I don’t want to. I’ll pretend I’m deaf; I’ll curl up and show my bristles. Let him touch me who dares! The arrow of the Call, sharply aimed, ricochets off. My skin is thick and weather-proofed. The Demand slides from it like water from a duck’s feathers. I stand on my rights, bestowed on me from the highest source in virtue of the nature which I have received, which I am, in virtue of the instincts and habits which are implanted in me and which strive for life and development. Let no one contest these rights, not even the highest authority! And even if someone should dare, let him know that I don’t want to do it.

  Soft it approaches, almost inaudible and yet quite unavoidable: a ray of light, an offer of power, a command that is more and less than a command — a wish, a request, an invitation, an enticement: brief as an instant, simple to grasp as the glance of two eyes. It contains a promise: love, delight and a vision extending over an immense and vertiginous distance. Liberation from the unbearable dungeon of ego. The adventure that I always longed for. The perfect feat of daring in which I am sure to win only by losing all. The source of life opening up inexhaustibly to me, who am dying of thirst! The gaze is perfectly tranquil, having nothing of magical power or of hypnotic compulsion: a questioning gaze which allows me my freedom. At the bottom of it the shadows of affliction and of hope alternate.

I lower my eyes; I look to the side. I don’t want to say ‘no’ in the face of those eyes. I give them time to turn away, time to withdraw into their cave of eternity, time to grow dark, to be blurred. I am not at home: ‘The master says he cannot see you at the moment’. I give those eyes time to disappear again behind their heavy lid, the curtain of eternity. For a second, precisely at the moment when I know it is too late, a nameless sorrow makes me tremble: happiness has been forfeited, love mocked, and no one can bring them back to me! The prison door thuds into its lock: again I am prisoner in what is to me so dead and so hated – myself [ap]


It is late in the evening of the first day of writing again and I am tired and need pray, need celebrate Holy Mass… need, but not in the negative sense…I need the way you feel when you do not turn away from the eyes of the Divine Lover and you need linger within those infinite streams of love which flow from the Risen One.

It is time to be bathed in light.

This is our hope, is it not, that no matter how often we turn away from those eyes, He is always seeking a moment within which to gaze upon us again, to offer us again the opportunity to look at Him straight in the eye and say: YES!

Ah Jesus, I yearn that You should pass by this way again this evening, gaze that I might linger within the Light of Your Eyes!

How come we remember the Holy Gospels so narrowly that we recall the walking away sad, but not Love’s Gaze? {Mark 10:21}