The Prophecies and Revelations of Saint Bridget of Sweden
The Prophecies and Revelations of Saint Bridget of Sweden

Book 12  - Four Prayers

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Proem[introduction] to the prayers written below, which were divinely revealed to the blessed Bridget of the kingdom of Sweden.

Since blessed Bridget always petitioned and asked God to pour into her some acceptable manner of praying, it happened one day, while she was praying, that in a wonderful manner she was lifted up in spirit by an elevation of mind. And then were poured into her from God certain most beautiful prayers concerning the life and passion and praise of Christ and concerning the life, compassion, and praise of the most Blessed Virgin Mary.

Afterward she so kept them in memory that every day she would read them devoutly. Wherefore the Blessed Virgin Mary, on a later occasion appearing to her at prayer, said: ”I merited for you those prayers. Therefore, when you read them devoutly, you shall be visited with the consolation of my Son.”

In this prayer revealed by God to blessed Bridget, the glorious Virgin Mary is devoutly and beautifully praised for her holy conception and infancy, for all her virtuous acts and labors, for the great sorrows of her whole life, for her most holy death and assumption, etc.

Prayer 1

Blessed and revered may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary, most holy Mother of God. You are, in truth, his best creation; and no one has ever loved him so intimately as you, O glorious Lady. Glory be to you, my Lady, O Virgin Mary, Mother of God. That same angel by whom Christ was announced to you announced you yourself to your own father and mother; and of their honest wedlock you were conceived and begotten.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. In your most holy infancy, immediately after your weaning, you were borne by your parents to the temple of God and were, with other virgins, entrusted to the keeping of the devout high priest.

Praise be to you, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. When you reached that age at which you understood that God was your Creator, you forthwith began to love him intimately above all things. Then too you most discreetly ordered your time, both day and night, by means of various offices and exercises in honor of God. Your sleep, too, and the food for your glorious body were so temperately regulated by you that you were always fit for God's service.

Infinite glory be to you, my Lady, O Virgin Mary, who humbly vowed your virginity to God himself and therefore had no concern about who would betroth you, for you knew that he to whom you had first given your faith was more mighty and more good than all others combined.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. You were alone and ablaze with ardent love for God and - all your mind and all the strength of your powers being lifted up - you were, with ardor and diligence, contemplating the most high God to whom you had offered your virginity, when the angel was sent to you from God and, in greeting you, announced to you God's will. To him you replied most humbly, professing yourself God's handmaid; and then and there the Holy Spirit wonderfully filled you with all power and virtue. To you, God the Father sent his coeternal and coequal Son, who came into you then and, of your flesh and blood, took for himself a human body. Thus, at that blessed hour, the Son of God became, in you, your son, alive in his every limb and without loss of his divine majesty.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. Of your own blessed body, the body of Christ had now been created; and in your womb, you felt his body ever growing and moving even to the time of his glorious nativity. Before anyone else, you yourself touched him with your holy hands; you wrapped him in cloths; and, in accord with the prophet's oracle, you laid him in a manger. With exultant joy, in motherly fashion, you used the most sacred milk of your breasts to nurture him.

Glory be to you, O my Lady, O Virgin Mary. While still dwelling in a contemptible house, i.e., the stable, you saw mighty kings coming to your Son from afar and humbly offering to him, with the greatest reverence, their royal guest-gifts. Afterward, with your own precious hands, you presented him in the temple; and, in your blessed heart, you diligently preserved all that you heard from him or saw during his infancy.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. With your most holy offspring, you fled into Egypt; and afterward, in joy, you bore him back to Nazareth. During his physical growth, you saw him, your Son, humble and obedient to yourself and to Joseph. Blessed may you be, O Lady Virgin Mary. You saw your Son preaching, doing miracles, and choosing the apostles, who, being enlightened by his examples, his miracles, and his teachings, became witnesses of truth that your Jesus is also truly the Son of God: publishing to all nations that it was he who, through himself, had fulfilled the writings of the prophets when on behalf of the human race he had patiently endured a most hard death.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary, who knew beforehand that your Son must be made captive. Later your blessed eyes with sorrow saw him bound and scourged and crowned with thorns and fixed naked to the cross with nails. You saw many despising him and calling him a traitor.

Honor be to you, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. In sorrow, you gazed at your Son as he spoke to you from the cross; and with your blessed ears, you dolefully heard him, in the agony of death, crying to the Father and commending his own soul into his hands.

Praise be to you, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. With bitter sorrow, you saw your Son hanging on the cross: from the top of his head to the soles of his feet, all black and blue and marked with the red of his own blood, and so cruelly dead. You also gazed at the bitter sight of the holes - in his feet, in his hands, and even in his glorious side. You gazed at his skin, all lacerated without any mercy.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. With tears in your eyes, you saw your Son taken down, wrapped in cloths, buried in a monument, and there guarded by soldiers.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. To the grave intensification of your heart's deep sorrow, you parted from the sepulchre of your Son and, all full of grief, were brought by his friends to the house of John. But there, at once, you felt a relief of your great sorrow because you most surely foreknew that your Son would quickly rise.

Rejoice, my most worthy Lady, O Virgin Mary, for in the same instant that your Son arose from death he willed to make this same fact known to you, his most Blessed Mother. Then and there he appeared to you by himself, and later he showed to other persons that he was the one who had been raised from death after having endured death in his own living body.

Rejoice therefore, my most worthy Lady, O Virgin Mary. When death had been conquered and death's instigator had been overthrown, and heaven's entry had been opened wide through your Son, you saw him rising and triumphant with the crown of victory. And on the fortieth day after his resurrection, you saw him, in the sight of many, ascend with honor to his kingdom in heaven as himself a king accompanied by angels.

Exult, my most worthy Lady, O Virgin Mary. You merited to see how, after his ascension, your Son suddenly transmitted to his apostles and disciples the Holy Spirit with which he had previously filled you to the full. By increasing the fervor of their charity and the rightness of their Catholic belief, he wonderfully enlightened their hearts.

Rejoice still more, my Lady, O Virgin Mary; and at your joy, let all the world rejoice. For many years after his ascension your Son permitted you to remain in this world for the consolation of his friends and for the strengthening of the faith, for the relief of the poor and for the sound counseling of the apostles. Then, through your prudent words, your seemly behavior, and your virtuous deeds, your Son converted countless Jews and infidel pagans to the Catholic faith; and by wondrously illuminating them, he enlightened them to confess that you are a virgin-mother and that he, your Son, is God with a true human nature.

Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. In your ardent charity and maternal love, you unceasingly desired at every moment to come to your so well-loved Son now sitting in heaven. While dwelling in this world and sighing after the things of heaven, you humbly conformed to the will of God; wherefore, by the dictates of divine justice, you ineffably increased your eternal glory. To you, O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, be eternal honor and glory. When it pleased God to rescue you from the exile of this world and to honor your soul in his kingdom forever, he then deigned to announce this to you through his angel; and he willed that your venerable body, when dead, be entombed by his apostles in a sepulchre with all reverence.

Be glad, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. For in that most light death of yours, your soul was embraced by the power of God; and he, as a watchful father, protected it from all adversity. Then it was that God the Father subjected to your power all things created. With honor, God the Son placed you, his most worthy Mother, beside himself on a most lofty seat. And the Holy Spirit, in bringing you to his glorious kingdom as a virgin betrothed to himself, did wonderfully exalt you.

Rejoice eternally, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. For some days after your death, your body lay entombed in its sepulchre until, with honor and through the power of God, it stood linked anew to your soul. Exult to the full, O Mother of God, O glorious Lady, O Virgin Mary. You merited to see your body revived after your death and assumed with your soul into heaven amidst honor from the angels. You acknowledged that your glorious Son was God with a human nature; and with exultant joy, you saw that he is the most just judge of all and the rewarder of good works.

Rejoice again, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. For your body's most holy flesh knows that it now exists in heaven as both virgin and mother. It sees itself in no way stained by any mortal or venial crime. No, it knows that it did all the works of virtue with such charity that God, in justice, had to revere it with highest honor. Your flesh then understood that the more ardently that anyone loves God in this world, the nearer to himself will God place that person in heaven. For it was manifestly clear to the whole court of heaven that no angel and no human loved God with such charity as you did; and therefore it was right and just that with honor God himself placed you, body and soul, on the highest seat of glory.

Blessed may you be, O my Lady, O Virgin Mary. Every faithful creature praises the Holy Trinity for you because you are the Trinity's most worthy creature. For wretched souls you obtain prompt pardon, and for all sinners you stand forth as a most faithful advocate and proxy. Praised therefore be God, the most high Emperor and Lord, who created you for such great honor that you yourself became both Empress and Lady everlastingly in the kingdom of heaven, forever to reign with him unto ages of ages. Amen.

This prayer was revealed by God to blessed Bridget. In it, by means of a painstakingly detailed narrative, Christ is beautifully and devoutly praised for his glorious incarnation; for all the actions, labors, and sorrows of his life and of his holy death; for his ascension into heaven; for the sending of the Holy Spirit upon the disciples; etc.

Prayer 2

Blessed may you be, my Lord, my God, and my Love most beloved of my soul: O you who are one God in three Persons. Glory and praise be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. You were sent by the Father into the body of a virgin; and yet you ever remain with the Father in heaven, while the Father, in his divinity, inseparably remained with you in your human nature in this world.

Honor and glory be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. After having been conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit, you physically grew in the Virgin's womb; and in it you humbly dwelt until the time of your birth. After your delightful nativity, you deigned to be touched by the most clean hands of your Mother, to be wrapped in cloths, and to be laid in a manger.

Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. You willed that your immaculate flesh be circumcised and that you be called Jesus. You willed to be offered by your Mother in the temple. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. You had yourself baptized in the Jordan by your servant John. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. With your bless mouth, you preached to human beings the words of life; and in the sight, through yourself, within your actual presence, you worked many miracles. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. By fulfilling the writings of the prophets, you manifested to the world in a rational way that you are the true God.

Blessing and glory be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. For forty days, you wonderfully fasted in the desert. You permitted yourself to be tempted by your enemy, the devil, whom - when it so pleased you - you drove from yourself with a single word. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. You foretold your death ahead of time. At the last supper, of material bread you wonderfully consecrated your precious Body and charitably bestowed it on your apostles in memory of your most worthy passion. By washing their feet with your own precious and holy hands, you humbly showed your very great humility.

Honor be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. In fear of suffering and death, you gave forth from your innocent body blood in place of sweat. Nonetheless, you accomplished for us the redemption that you had willed to perform; and thus you manifestly showed the charity that you had toward the human race.

Glory be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. Sold by your disciple and bought by the Jews, you were made a captive for our sake. Solely by your word, you cast your enemies to the earth; and then of your own will you gave yourself over as a captive to their unclean an grasping hands.

Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. You were led to Caiaphas, and you, who are the Judge of all, humbly permitted yourself to be given over to the judgment of Pilate. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. From Pilate the judge, you were sent to Herod; and you permitted yourself to be mocked and scorned by him; and you consented again to be remitted to that same Pilate as judge.

Glory be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ, for the derision that you endured while you stood invested with purple and crowned with the sharpest thorns. With great patience you endured the spitting on your glorious face, the veiling of your eyes, and, on your cheek and neck, the grave and cutting blows of the deadly hands of the wicked.

Praise be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. Like an innocent lamb, you most patiently permitted yourself to be tied to the column and monstrously scourged; to be led, all bloody, to Pilate's judgment and there be gazed at.

Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. Most patiently, in Pilate's presence, with your own blessed ears you willed to hear abuse and lies hurled at you and the voices of the people asking that the guilty robber be acquitted and that you, the innocent, be condemned.

Honor be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. With your glorious body covered in gore, the judgment on you was the death of the cross. The cross you bore in pain on your sacred shoulders; and, amidst frenzy, you were led to the place of your passion. Despoiled of your garments, thus you willed to be fixed to the wood of the cross.

Glory unmeasured be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. For us you humbly endured that the Jews stretched out your venerable hands and feet with rope, that they cruelly fixed them with iron nails to the wood of the cross, that they called you a traitor, that in manifold ways they derided you with unspeakable words while above you was inscribed that title of confusion.

Eternal praise and thanksgiving be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. With what great meekness you suffered for us such cruel sorrows! On the cross your blessed body was emptied of all its strength; your kindly eyes grew dark; as your blood decreased, a pallor covered all your comely face; your blessed tongue grew swollen, hot, and dry; your mouth dripped from the bitter drink; your hair and beard were filled with blood from the wounds of your most holy head; the bones of your hands, of your feet, and of all your precious body were dislocated from their sockets to your great and intense grief; the veins and nerves of all your blessed body were cruelly broken; you were so monstrously scourged and so injured with painful wounds that your most innocent flesh and skin were all intolerably lacerated. Thus afflicted and aggrieved, you, O my most sweet Lord, stood on the cross, and, with patience and humility, awaited in extreme pain the hour of your death.

Perpetual honor be to you, Lord Jesus Christ. Placed in this your anguish, with your kind and charitable eyes you humbly looked upon your most worthy Mother, who never sinned nor ever gave to the slightest sin any consent. While consoling her who was your own, you committed her to the faithful keeping of your disciple.

Eternal blessing be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. In the agony of death, you gave to all sinners the hope of forgiveness when, to the robber who had turned to you, you mercifully promised the glory of paradise. Eternal praise be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ, for each and every hour that you endured such great bitterness and anguish on the cross for us sinners. For the most acute pains proceeding from your wounds direly penetrated your happy soul and cruelly passed through your most sacred heart until your heart cracked and you happily sent forth your spirit, and, with bowed head, humbly commended it into the hands of God your Father. Then, having died in the body, you remained there all cold.

Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. By your precious blood and by your most sacred death, you redeemed souls and mercifully led them back from exile to eternal life. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. You hung dead on the wood of the cross, and straightway you mightily liberated your friends from the prison of hell. Blessed may you be, my Lord Jesus Christ. For our salvation, you permitted your side and your heart to be perforated with a lance, and from that same side you sent forth, in a rich flow, water and your precious blood in order to redeem us. Before the judge's leave had been given, you willed that your most sacred body not be taken down from the cross.

Glory be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. You willed that your blessed body be taken down from the cross by your friends and that it be laid in the hands of your most unhappy Mother. You permitted that it be wrapped in cloths by her and be buried in a monument and that it be guarded there by soldiers.

Sempiternal honor be to you, my Lord Jesus Christ. On the third day, you rose from the dead, and you showed yourself alive to such others as it so pleased you. After forty days, while many watched, you ascended to the heavens; and there, in honor, you placed your friends whom you had delivered from Tartarus.

Jubilation and praise eternal be to you, Lord Jesus Christ. You sent the Holy Spirit to the hearts of your disciples; and in their spirits, you immeasurably increased divine love.

Blessed may you be, and praiseworthy and glorious unto the ages, my Lord Jesus. You sit upon the throne in your kingdom of heaven, in the glory of your divinity, corporeally alive, with all your most holy limbs that you took from the flesh of the Virgin. Even thus shall you come on the day of judgment to judge the souls of all the living and the dead: you, who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit unto ages of ages. Amen.

In this prayer, revealed by God to blessed Bridget, praise is given in a beautiful way to all the members of the most holy body of our Lord Jesus Christ and to his body's most virtuous actions.

Prayer 3

My Lord Jesus Christ, although I know well that your blessed body is unceasingly praised and glorified by the harmonious jubilee of the citizens of heaven above, and yet, because I am bound by a debt to render to you infinite thanksgiving, therefore I, although a person unwise and unworthy, desire nevertheless with all my heart and with all my mouth to offer to all the members of your precious body such thanks as I can and praise and honor.

My Lord Jesus Christ, you are truly the High Priest and Pontiff who first and before all others wondrously consecrated of material bread your true and blessed Body that you might satisfy us with the bread of angels. Therefore, may your glorious priestly seat at the right hand of God your Father, in your divinity, be happy and blessed unto eternity. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, you truly are the head of all men and angels, the worthy King of kings and Lord of lords; and you do all your works out of true and ineffable charity. You humbly permitted your blessed head to be crowned with a crown of thorns. Blessed, therefore, be your head and hair; and may they be gloriously adorned with an imperial diadem. May heaven and earth and sea and all things created be subject and obedient to your empire and your power unto eternity. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, your splendid forehead never turned away from right justice and truth. Blessed, therefore, be that same forehead of yours, and, with royal and triumphant glory, may it be perpetually praised by all creatures together. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, with your bright eyes of pity you look kindly upon all who with true charity ask of you grace and mercy. Blessed, therefore, be your eyes, your eyelids, and your glorious eyebrows; and may all your fair and lovely sight be unceasingly glorified by the whole heavenly army of citizens on high. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, with your kindly ears you gladly hear and hearken to all who humbly address you. Blessed, therefore, be those ears of yours; and may they be eternally filled with all honor. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, your most sweet and blessed nostrils did not shrink from the stench of the putrid cadaver of the dead Lazarus or even from the horrid smell that spiritually proceeded from the traitor Judas when he kissed you. Blessed, therefore, be your precious nostrils; and may all expend on them the odor of sweetness and praise forever. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, for our bodily and spiritual health and salvation and for our instruction in faith, you, with your own blessed mouth and lips, very often preached the words of life and of doctrine. Blessed, therefore, be your venerable mouth and your lips for every word that proceeded from them. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, with your most clean teeth, you most moderately chewed physical food for the sustenance of your blessed body. Blessed, therefore, and honored be your teeth by all your creatures. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, your tongue never moved to speak and never kept silence, except with justice and utility and to the extent that such action had been foreordained in your divinity. Blessed, therefore, be that same tongue of yours. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, in accordance with your age, you fittingly wore a fine beard on your handsome face. May your venerable beard, therefore, be everlastingly revered and adored. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, blessed be your throat, your stomach, and your viscera; and may all your sacred inwards be perpetually honored for the fact that they decently nourished your precious body in due order and perfectly sustained your bodily life for the redemption of souls and to the joy of the angels. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, you are worthily called a leader by all because you bore on your holy shoulders and neck the burdensome bulk of the cross before you mightily shattered the gates of hell and led the souls of the elect back to heaven. Therefore, to your blessed neck and shoulders that so endured, be honor and glory eternally without end. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, your blessed, royal, and magnificent heart could never, by torments or terrors or blandishments, be swayed from the defense of your kingdom of truth and justice. You did not spare your most worthy blood in any way; but rather, with your magnificent heart, you faithfully strove for justice and the law and intrepidly preached to your friends and to your enemies the law's precepts and the counsels of perfection. By dying in battle to defend these things, you - and your holy followers with you - have obtained the victory. Therefore, it is right that your unconquered heart be ever magnified in heaven and on earth and be unceasingly praised with triumphal honor by all creatures and soldiers. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, the strenuous soldiers and faithful servants of this world gladly expose their own lives to death in war in order that their lords may enjoy safety of life; but you, O my good Lord, quickly hastened to the death of the cross in order that your servants might not miserably perish. Wherefore it is just that your glorious and intrepid breast be eternally adored by all your servants, whom you have thus delivered, and by all others and that it be humbly praised even by the angelic choirs. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, with your venerable hands and arms you surpassed the strength of Samson in a wonderful way as you patiently endured that they be fixed to the wood of the cross and thus, with violence, snatched your friends from hell. Therefore to these same limbs of yours, from all whom you have redeemed, may there be shown unceasing reverence, eternal praise, and everlasting glory. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, may your precious ribs and your back be blessed and honored unto eternity by all human beings who sweat over labors spiritual and earthly. For from your infancy even to your death, you labored unceasingly for our redemption; and with great pain and burdensomeness, you bore our sins on your back. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, supreme purity and true cleanness, may your most innocent loins be blessed and praised above all the angels' cleanness which is in heaven and above the purity of all who have preserved their chastity and virginity in the world; for the chastity and virginity of them all cannot be compared to your cleanness and your purity. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, may your knees, with their hams and your shins, be revered and humbly honored by all creatures in heaven and on earth above all who show reverence and honor by kneeling in the presence of their lords and masters; for you, the Lord of all, in all humility knelt before your own disciples. Amen.

My Lord Jesus Christ, good Teacher, may your most blessed feet be blessed and perennially adored; for, in this world, to your great sorrow, you walked with unshod feet along the harsher way that you taught to others, and at the end, for our sake, you permitted them to be fixed with hard nails to the cross - you who live and reign with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit through all ages of ages. Amen.

In this prayer, which was divinely revealed to blessed Bridget, most devout and beautiful praise is given to all the members of the glorious body of the Virgin Mary and to all her body's virtuous actions.

Prayer 4

O my Lady, my life, O Queen of heaven, O Mother of God, although I am certain that your glorious body is unceasingly praised in heaven with melodious jubilee by all the heavenly court, still I, although an unworthy person, desire with all my heart to render here on earth such praise and thanks as I can to all your precious limbs.

Therefore, O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, praised be your hair with all its strands, now decorated with a diadem of glory; for your hair is brighter than the radiance of the sun. Just as the hairs of the head cannot be computed, even so are your virtues innumerable.

O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, may your forehead and your most honest face be together praised above the whiteness of the moon, for none of the faithful in this dark world ever looked to you without feeling some spiritual consolation poured into himself at the sight of you. Blessed may you be, my Lady, O Virgin Mary. Your eyebrows and your eyelids exceed in the brightness of their splendor the rays of the sun. Blessed be your most chaste eyes, O my Lady, O Virgin Mary. They coveted none of the transitory things that they saw in this world. As often as you lifted up your eyes, their appearance excelled the splendor of the stars in the sight of the whole heavenly court.

O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, may both your most blessed cheeks be praised above the beauty of the dawn, which so beautifully rises with its colors white and red. Even thus, while you were in the world, did your lovely cheeks shine with bright splendor in the sight of God and the angels because you never displayed them for worldly pomp or vanity.

O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, revered and honored be your most honest ears above all the forces of the sea and above the motion of all the waters; for your ears ever manfully militated against all the unclean flux of worldly hearing. O Virgin Mary, my Mistress, may your most sweet nose glory! By the power of the Holy Spirit, it never drew or sent forth a breath without all your thought being ever in the presence of the most High. Although at times you slept, you never turned your will from him. Therefore, to that same nose of yours and to your most blessed nostrils be ever given an odor of sweetness, praise, and honor above the mingled odor of all the spices and all the herbs that habitually send forth a delightful fragrance.

O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, praised be your tongue - so pleasing to God and to the angels - above all fruitful trees. Every word that your tongue uttered never harmed any person but always came forth to someone's advantage. Your tongue was very prudent, and all found it sweeter to hear than the sweetest fruit is sweet to taste. O my Queen and my Lady, O Virgin Mary, may your blessed mouth and your lips be praised above the loveliness of roses and all other flowers and especially for that your blessed and most humble word in which, with this same precious mouth of yours, you responded to God's angel when through you God willed to fulfill in the world his will, which he had foretold through the prophets. By virtue of that word, you diminished the power of the demons in hell and honorably restored the choirs of angels in heaven.

O Virgin Mary, my Lady and my consolation, may your neck, your shoulders, and your back be perpetually honored above the charm of all lilies, for you never bent these members of yours and never straightened them again, except for some useful purpose or for the honor of God. Just as the lily moves and bends at the blowing of the winds, so all your members moved at the infusion of the Holy Spirit. O my Lady, my strength and my sweetness, may your most holy arms, your hands, and your fingers be blessed and eternally honored above all precious gems, which are comparable to your virtuous works. Just as your virtuous works allured the Son of God to you, even so did your arms and hands sweetly bind him in a maternal embrace of love.

O my Lady and my enlightenment, blessed be your most sacred breasts above all the sweetest springs of healing waters. Just as their welling water supplies solace and refreshment for the thirsty, your sacred breasts, in giving milk to the Son of God, supplied us in our need with medicine and consolation.

O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, blessed be your most precious bosom above the purest gold. When you stood all sorrowful beneath the cross of your Son, then - at the sound of the hammers - you felt your glorious bosom most sharply constricted as if in a hard press. Although you heartily loved your Son, you nevertheless preferred him to endure that most bitter punishment in order that he might die for the redemption of souls, rather than that he avoid this death to their loss. Thus too did you stand most firm in the virtue of constancy when in every adversity you totally conformed yourself to the divine will.

O my Lady, O joy of my heart, O Virgin Mary, may your most venerable heart be glorified and revered. It was so afire for the honor of God - more so than all other creatures of heaven and earth - that the flame of its charity ascended the heights of heaven to God the Father, and, because of this, God's Son descended from the Father into your glorious womb with the fervor of the Holy Spirit. Nevertheless, the Son was not separated from the Father even though, in accordance with the Father's foreordainment, he was most honestly made human in your virginal womb.

O my Lady, most fertile and most virginal Virgin Mary, blessed be your most blessed womb above all fruitfully sprouting fields. Just as the seed that has fallen upon good ground brings forth for its owner fruit a hundredfold, even so your womb, a virgin-womb and yet most fertile, brought forth for God the Father blessed fruit, more than a thousandfold. Just as the lord of a field glories in its fertile abundance of fruit and just as the little birds and the animals feed in it with delight, even so did the blessed and fertile fruit of the little field of your womb cause high honor for God in heaven, rejoicing for the angels, and, for humans on earth, a lavish flow of sustenance and life.

O my Lady, Virgin most prudent, may your most sacred feet be eternally praised above all roots that unceasingly bear fruit. May your feet be thus blessed because they carried the glorious Son of God enclosed in your body as its sweetest fruit while your body itself was inviolate and your virginity remained uninjured forever. Oh with what honesty your most sacred feet went their way! Truly, at each of their prints, the King of heaven stood consoled and all the court of heaven rejoiced and was very glad.

O my Lady, O Virgin Mary, O Mother of all, may God the Father, together with the Son and the Holy Spirit, be eternally praised in his incomprehensible majesty for that most sacred cell of your whole body in which God's Son so sweetly rested - he whom the whole army of angels praises in heaven and whom the whole Church reverently adores on earth.

And you, my Lord, my King, and my God, to you be perpetual honor, perennial praise, blessing, and glory, and infinite thanksgiving. For you created this Virgin so worthy and so honest; and you chose her for yourself as your Mother for the sake of all who in any way have been consoled in heaven and on earth and for the sake of those in purgatory who have had, through her, assistance and solace. You live and reign with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, through all ages of ages. Amen.
"So let us be confident, let us not be unprepared, let us not be outflanked, let us be wise, vigilant, fighting against those who are trying to tear the faith out of our souls and morality out of our hearts, so that we may remain Catholics, remain united to the Blessed Virgin Mary, remain united to the Roman Catholic Church, remain faithful children of the Church."- Abp. Lefebvre
The Prophecies and Revelations of Saint Bridget of Sweden

The Life of Saint Bridget by Prior Peter and Master Peter

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One should know that this most humble handmaid of God never presumed to call herself or to have herself called the bride of Christ, or his channel, because of vainglory or transitory honor or any temporal advantage, but at the instruction of Christ and of blessed Mary, his most worthy Mother, who both called her so. And it was not from presumption, but out of humble obedience to them, that she thus called herself in her writings.

Of what parents Christ's bride, Lady Bridget, was born.

As we read about blessed John the Baptist and about Saint Nicholas, the merits of parents many times cooperate to produce in their children an even greater grace, which perseveres to the end. So Lady Bridget of holy memory, the princess of Närke in the kingdom of Sweden, the bride of Christ, came forth from just and devout parents, who were noble according to the flesh because they were of the noble race of the kings of the Goths, but more noble according to God. For her father was a devout and just man and was called Lord Birger of Upper Sweden. Every Friday, he humbly confessed his sins; and he used to say this: ”On Fridays, I want to prepare myself so well for God that on the other days I may be ready to bear whatever God may give.”

He also visited, with great labor, the places of the saints - namely, of James and of others - imitating the footsteps of his predecessors. For his father had been a Jerusalem pilgrim and so had his grandfather and his great-grandfather and his great-great-grandfather. And it is unheard of that men so magnificent and of such great wealth and glory from the ends of the world - namely, from the kingdom of Sweden - should undertake such a laborious journey - namely, to see the places of Saint James and of Jerusalem, where Jesus Christ became incarnate and suffered.

Wherefore Christ later, among other words of the revelations, spoke to his aforesaid bride: ”I tell you,” he said, ”but not for your praise, that your generation has come forth from a lineage of holy kings. And they themselves earned, by their merits, that my divine grace be made manifest with you.” And similarly the mother of this same bride of Christ - her name was Lady Ingeborg - was very noble and very devout.

Her father, named Lord Benedict, a man sprung of kingly seed, founded and endowed many churches and monasteries. The wife of this Benedict hid her devotion of mind and walked ways in accord with her noble rank and the customs of the nobility. One time when she and her household were passing through a certain monastery of nuns, she was looked down upon by a certain nun. And indeed this nun began, with force, to disparage this same grandmother of the said Lady Bridget and to murmur with the other nuns. And when, on the following night, the said nun had fallen asleep, a person of wonderful beauty appeared to her and said with angry countenance: ”Why have you disparaged my handmaid by saying that she is haughty, which is not true? For from her offspring I shall cause a daughter to come forth, with whom I shall do my great deeds in the world; and I shall pour such great grace into her that all the nations will be astonished.”

However, when the time came that this bride of Christ, Lady Bridget, was still in her mother's womb, it happened that her mother suffered shipwreck in an inlet of the sea. And when many of either sex had already drowned, a duke of the kingdom, Lord Eric, the king of Sweden's brother, who was there at the time, saw her in peril, and, by every means in his power, brought her alive to the shore. Then that very night, a person in shining garments stood by that same mother of Lady Bridget and said: ”You have been saved for the sake of the good that you have in your womb. Therefore nourish it with the love of God because it is God who has given it to you.”

How the birth of Christ's bride appeared to a priest.

And so, with the coming of the time at which the girl Bridget was born, a certain parish priest of a nearby church - a man of proven life and advanced age - while awake and praying, saw in the night a shining cloud, and, in the cloud, a virgin sitting with a book in her hand. To the wondering priest the same virgin said: ”To Birger has been born a daughter whose wonderful voice will be heard throughout the world.”

How she was as if tongueless for three years.

And so, as the girl Bridget advanced in age, she was as if tongueless for three years and did not have the use of speech. Her parents were in much doubt about this, believing that she was mute; but at the end of the third year, she so fully obtained the use of speech that she did not speak in the babbling manner of infants, but, contrary to what is natural at such an age, she sounded the words perfectly.

How Bridget's mother dies.

In the meantime her mother, a woman virtuous in all things, was growing infirm. Several days in advance, she foreknew and foretold her own passing; and when she was just about to go forth from her body and saw her husband and the others sorrowing, she said: ”Why do you sorrow? It is enough to have lived this long. We must rejoice because I am now called to a mightier Lord.” And having called her children, she blessed them all and fell asleep in the Lord.

How, while still a girl, she saw wonderful things.

And so, when the girl Bridget, the bride of Christ, had now attained the seventh year of her age, she once saw, while wide awake, an altar just opposite her bed and a certain lady in shining garments sitting above the altar. The lady had a precious crown in her hand and said to her: ”O Bridget, come!”

And hearing this, she arose from bed, running to the altar. The lady said to her: ”Do you want to have this crown?” She nodded, and the said lady put the crown on her head so that Bridget then felt, as it were, the circle of the crown touching her head. But when she returned to bed, the vision disappeared; and yet she could never forget it.

How she saw Christ crucified.

Round about her tenth year, on a certain occasion she heard a sermon preached in church about the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ. The following night she saw, in a dream, Christ as if he had been crucified in that same hour, and he said to her: ”In such a way was I wounded.” And she thought that this had happened at that hour and answered in her sleep: ”O Lord, who has done this to you?”

Jesus Christ answered: 'Those who scorn me and neglect my love: they have done this to me.” Then she came to herself; and from that day, she felt such affection for the passion of Christ that she could rarely recall the memory of it without tears.

How an unknown girl was seen sitting beside her.

Moreover, on a day in her twelfth year, she was intent upon some handiwork involving silk and gold in the company of other girls of her own age; and she felt much anxiety of soul because she could not do her work as she wished. Then her maternal aunt - a very devout and praiseworthy lady into whose keeping Bridget had come after her mother's death - walked into the house and saw an unknown maiden sitting beside Bridget and doing that same piece of work with her. And since, at her entrance, that unknown girl had disappeared, the aunt then asked Bridget who the girl was that had been working with her.

Bridget answered that she had seen no one. Her aunt, however, inspected the work and found that it was so finely done that anyone looking at it would be given to understand that it was not the work of a girl of such a tender age but was something divine. Therefore this lady herself used to hold it in regard among her relics as something from God.

How the aunt found Bridget praying at night.

One night, the aforesaid aunt secretly entered the bedroom of the maidens and found Bridget kneeling naked before her bed and praying with tears. The aunt, suspicious of maidenly levity, ordered someone to bring a switch. But when she had begun to extend the switch to strike Bridget, at once it broke into tiny pieces so that the said aunt, seeing this, wondered greatly and said: ”What have you done, Bridget? Have the women taught you some fallacious prayers?” The maiden answered with tears: ”No, my lady; but I arose from bed to praise him whose custom is ever to help me.” And her aunt said: ”Who is he?” To which the maiden said: ”The Crucified One whom I saw.” And because of this, from that day her aunt began to love and venerate her more fervently.

How she saw the devil.

Not long after, when Bridget was wide awake and playing with girls, she saw the devil, as it were, having a hundred hands and feet and most deformed in every way. Thoroughly terrified, she ran to her bed, where the devil appeared to her again and said to her: ”I can do nothing unless the Crucified were to permit.” Since the women had seen and were asking what it was that had befallen her and why she was so thoroughly terrified, she answered: ”A certain heartache seized upon me.” And those women asked nothing more of her. But after some years, her aunt came and heard from her the whole truth and instructed her to cover her visions in silence and to be of good hope and to love God intimately and to beware of all levity.

How she came to marriage and how she lived in her marriage.

In the meantime, Lady Bridget was betrothed to a rich young man, a noble and prudent knight who was called Lord Ulf of Ulvåsa, prince of Närke. Between them they had so very honorable a marriage that both spouses lived in virginity for one year, devoutly asking God that if they ought to come together he, the Creator of all, would from them create an offspring that would be at his service. She truly loved God and was most highly wary of herself so that no one might speak badly of her and that she might not give occasion for anyone to disparage her. Therefore she fled levities and places or persons for which she could be branded; and she had in her company honest handmaids and well-mannered companions. Indeed, together with the members of her household, she was intent upon work for divine worship or for the welfare of her neighbors.

How she prayed and how a prayer was poured into her.

In truth, the bride of Christ was so very fervent in prayer and tears that when her husband was away, she passed almost whole nights in vigil and did not spare her body many genuflexions and cruel disciplining. In fact, some time passed during which she constantly kept asking God in her prayers that some suitable manner of praying might be poured into her. One day, in a wonderful manner, she was elevated in mind; and then there was poured into her a most beautiful prayer concerning the passion of Christ and concerning the life and the praise of the most Blessed Virgin Mary. She kept this prayer in her memory so that afterward she might read it every day. And so one time when blessed Mary appeared to her afterward, she said: ”I merited that prayer for you; therefore when you read it, you will be visited with the consolation of my Son.”

About confession.

She continuously frequented confession; and for her confessor, she had a very expert and devout master of theology, called Master Matthias, who wrote an excellent gloss on the whole Bible and composed many volumes of books. And it was he who composed the prologue for the books of the Heavenly Revelations of the aforesaid Lady Bridget; and it was him that she obeyed in all her difficulties. wherefore, this same confessor used to say familiarly to his friends: ”In Lady Bridget, it is a sign of some future grace that she so laments light matters as others lament things very serious and that she leaves nothing in her words or behavior unexamined.”

About fasting.

When she could, she multiplied her great fasts and other acts of abstinence; and she very often abstained from delicacies in a hidden way so that it would not be noticed by her husband or by others.

About reading.

Indeed, when she was not occupied with manual labor, she was continually rereading the lives of the saints and the Bible, which she had caused to be written out for herself in her own language; and when she could hear the sermons of upright men, she did not spare herself the labor of going to hear those same sermons.

About almsdeeds.

Right up to her death, she did very large almsdeeds. In Sweden, she had a house set aside for the poor; and she served them in person when she could. She washed their feet and clothed them and visited them when they were infirm and handled their wounds and bodies with tender compassion and the greatest of maternal charity.

How blessed Mary helped her in childbirth.

Now at one time Lady Bridget was imperiled during childbirth, and her life was despaired of. That night, the women who were present to watch over her were awake; and as they looked, a person dressed in white silk was seen to enter and stand before the bed and handle each one of Lady Bridget's members as she lay there - to the fear of all the women who were present. When, however, that person had gone out, Lady Bridget gave birth so easily that it was a thing of wonder and not to be doubted that the Blessed Virgin, who gave birth without pain, was that person who mitigated the labors, the pains, and the peril of her handmaid, just as that same Virgin afterwards told her in a vision when she spoke this revelation:

A revelation.

”When you,” she said, ”had difficulty in childbirth, I, Mary, entered unto you. For that reason, you are an ingrate if you do not love me. Labor, therefore, that your children may also be my children.”

How she virtuously educated and nurtured her children.

The bride of Christ, therefore, with great concern and diligence, virtuously educated and nurtured her sons and daughters, handing them over to teachers by whom they were instructed in discipline and good behavior. She wept daily over her children's sins, fearing that they would offend their God. And so one time when Saint John the Baptist appeared to her, he said: ”Because you wept over the fact that your son offended me by not fasting on my vigil, and because you would prefer him to serve me rather than be a king, I shall therefore help him and shall arm him with my arms.” Mention is made of this more clearly at the end of the fourth book of the Heavenly Revelations given to the aforesaid lady.

How she gained her husband for God and they both went to Saint James.

When, however, Lady Bridget had for a long time been making progress in the virtues, she also gained her husband for God. For even though he was a vigorous man and an important member of the king of Sweden's council, he occupied himself - at his wife's advice and admonishment - in learning to read the Hours of the most Blessed Virgin Mary and the books containing the laws and legal judgments; and he studied to fulfill what belongs to justice and the law. And so, both of them - namely, this husband and wife - being fervent in their love for God and that they might more freely disengage themselves from the vanities of the world, went forth from their fatherland and from their kindred after Abraham's example, and, with great labors and expenses, proceeded into Spain to Saint James in Compostella.

After they had made their pilgrimage to many places of the saints and while they were on the way back, her husband took sick in the city that is called Arras, near Flanders. As the sickness grew worse, the bride of Christ, being in a state of great anxiety of soul, merited to be consoled by Saint Denis, who appeared and spoke to her at prayer: ”I,” he said, ”am Denis, who came from Rome to these parts of France to proclaim God's word in my life. And so, because you love me with special devotion, I therefore proclaim to you that through you, God wills to be made known to the world and that you have been handed over to my guardianship and protection. Wherefore I shall help you always; and I give to you this sign: your husband will not die now of this sickness.” And many other times, this same blessed Denis visited her in revelations and consoled her.

A vision of future things.

After some days, there in that same city of Arras, she again saw certain wonderful things in prophetic vision: namely, how she was going to travel to Rome and to the holy city of Jerusalem, and how she was going to depart from this world, and how a very handsome youth led her then in spirit through all the said places. All these things were thus fulfilled after much time.

How, with her husband convalescing, she returned to her fatherland.

However, after his long illness, her husband was convalescing; and they both returned to their fatherland. Between them, they maintained a mutual continence and decided to enter a monastery. And after all their affairs and goods had been set in order to this end, her husband - still having the same purpose - died in the year of our Lord, 1344.

How she was sent to a teacher and how, after her husband's death, she was visited by the Spirit.

After some days, when the bride of Christ was worried about the change in her status and its bearing on her service of God, and while she was praying about this in her chapel, then she was caught up in spirit; and while she was in ecstasy, she saw a bright cloud; and from the cloud, she heard a voice saying to her: ”Woman, hear me.” And thoroughly terrified, fearing that it was an illusion, she fled to her chamber; and at once she confessed and then received the Body of Christ.

When at last, after several days, she was at prayer in the same chapel, again that bright cloud appeared to her; and from the cloud, she heard again a voice uttering words like those before, namely: ”Woman, hear me.” And then that lady, again thoroughly terrified, fled to her chamber; and having confessed, she communicated as before, fearing that the voice was an illusion.

Finally, after several days, when she was praying again in the same place, she was indeed caught up in spirit and again saw the bright cloud, and, in it, the likeness of a human being, who said this: ”Woman, hear me; I am your God, who wish to speak with you.” Terrified, therefore, and thinking it was an illusion, she heard again: ”Fear not,” he said; ”for I am the Creator of all, and not a deceiver. For I do not speak to you for your sake alone, but for the sake of the salvation of others.

Hear the things that I speak; and go to Master Matthias, your confessor, who has experience in discerning the two types of spirit. Say to him on my behalf what I now say to you: you shall be my bride and my channel, and you shall hear and see spiritual things, and my Spirit shall remain with you even to your death.” After this, he added: ”For three reasons, Lucifer fell,” etc., as is more fully contained in the revelations of the Heavenly Book.

And this is the first revelation in the prologue, etc. Therefore in the year of our Lord 1345, the first divine revelations were made to Lady Bridget not in sleep but while she was awake and at prayer, with her body remaining alive in its vigor, but while she was caught up from her bodily senses in ecstasy and in visions, either spiritual or imaginary, with the coming of a vision or a supernatural and divine illumination of her intellect, for she saw and heard spiritual things and felt them in spirit. Indeed, in the manner mentioned, she saw and heard corporeal images and similitudes; in fact, in her heart she felt something, as it were, alive, which moved more actively and more fervently in response to greater inflammations and infusions, but less when the infusions were less. Many times, indeed, the movement in her heart was so vehement that motion could be seen and felt even on the outside.

How, even before her husband's passing, she saw certain things.

In the fourth year before her husband's passing, a saint of our land of Sweden, Botvid by name, appeared to her, as it were, in an ecstasy of mind, and said: ”I have, with other saints, merited for you God's grace - namely, to hear and to see and to feel spiritual things - and the Spirit of God will inflame your soul.”

In the third year before her husband's passing, the most Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her and said: ”I am the Queen of those in misery. I want to show you what my Son was like in his humanity and what he was like when he suffered on the cross. And this will be a sign to you, that you will come to the places in Jerusalem where I lived in the body and there, with your spiritual eyes, you will see my Son.” After twenty-eight years, all of this was thus accomplished, as it is more clearly recorded in the book of revelations that she had in Jerusalem and in Bethlehem.

How, at the beginning of the revelations, she was instructed to stay in a certain monastery.

And so at the beginning of the revelations, she was at once instructed to obey that same Matthias, a master of theology, and to stay in a monastery of Cistercian monks, namely, Saint Mary's in Alvastra, which is in Sweden, in the diocese of Linköping. The Spirit said to her in a vision: ”If it should please the mighty Lord to do a work that is singular, general works must not therefore be despised but must be loved all the more and with greater fervor. So I, the God of all, who am above all rules, permit you to reside at the present time near the monastery - not to abolish the Rule, nor to introduce a new custom, but rather to display my wonderful work in a holy place. For David, in a time of need, ate the hallowed loaves - an act that is nevertheless forbidden to some in a normal time.”

There was a lay brother with the name Gerekin in this same monastery of the Cistercian order at Alvastra. For forty years he never went outside the monastery; but day and night, he was absorbed in prayers; and he had this grace: that, during prayer, he almost continually saw the nine choirs of angels; and at the elevation of the Body of Christ, he merited frequently to see Christ in the appearance of a child. When Lady Bridget had come to the monastery and was residing there, this brother wondered in his heart and said:

”Why does that lady settle here in a monastery of monks, introducing a new custom against our Rule?” Then this same brother was caught up in an ecstasy of mind and clearly heard a voice saying to him: ”Do not wonder. This woman is a friend of God; and she has come in order that at the foot of this mountain she may gather flowers from which all people, even overseas and beyond the world's ends, shall receive medicine.”

Again, on a second occasion, this same brother saw her raised from the earth, and, as it were, lightning going forth from her mouth. And then he heard in spirit: ”This is the woman who, coming from the ends of the earth, shall give countless nations wisdom to drink. And this will be a sign to you: that she, from the mouth of God, is going to tell you the end of your life. And you will exult at her words and at her coming; and your desire will be fulfilled more quickly lest you see the evils that God is going to bring down upon this house.”

Lord Hemming, bishop of Åbo, performed her divine embassy in France and England and saw that the kings were less than willing to receive the words of God - namely, those revelations touching the kings and the war between the kingdoms of France and England. These revelations are contained in the fourth book of the Heavenly Revelations, nearly at the end of the chapter ”Disturbed in heart,” etc. As he slept, Lady Bridget appeared to him and said: ”Why are you disturbed? You will return to your fatherland successfully, and you will bear the fruit of souls. But know that the plague upon those to whom you were sent shall not yet end, for their hearts are hardened against God, and they shall be troubled yet a while until they are humbled.”

There was a nun named Katharine in the monastery of Mount Saint Mary, in the kingdom of Sweden. She received this grace: blessed Mary appeared to her, and, among other words, said: ”I shall show to you that I am the Mother of God, and I shall present you to my Son.” When this lady had seen Lady Bridget and they were talking together familiarly, she replied: ”O you happy lady! For I am not speaking so that either you or I would be boasting, because I have heard for very certain a voice that said this: 'Know that Bridget shall yet be called happy because, if she is scorned on earth, she will be honored in heaven and those to be born will proclaim her name.' Therefore stand firm because without doubt it will thus be accomplished, even as I have heard.”

When Master Matthias, her confessor - of whom mention was made above - was stricken with a certain temptation, it was said to Lady Bridget in spirit: ”He will be knowledgeable from 'In the beginning,' i.e., from the beginning of the Bible and of the book of Genesis, which thus commences: 'In the beginning, God created heaven and earth,' right through to 'Alpha and O,' i.e., right through to the Apocalypse, where 'Alpha and O' is thus written. And he will be liberated from his temptations, and I shall give to him the fervor of my Spirit.” And at once he felt himself liberated and given rest from his temptation. Also, on the same day that this Master Matthias died in his fatherland, Lady Bridget, who was staying in Rome, heard in spirit: ”Happy are you, Master Matthias, because of the crown that was fashioned for you in Sweden. Come now to wisdom that will never end!”

When, in old age, Brother Algot of the Order of Preachers, a master of theology and a most familiar friend of Lady Bridget, for three years experienced blindness and suffered violently from calculi, he asked the said Lady Bridget to offer prayer to God for him. When, in compliance with his request, she asked for him to be healed, this answer came to her in spirit: ”He is a gleaming star. It is not expedient that his soul be blackened by his body's health. Now he has competed and he has reached the finish. Nothing remains save that he be crowned. This will be a sign to him: now, from this hour, the pains of his flesh will be alleviated; now all of his soul will be inflamed with my charity.” And not many days afterward, he expired.

The aforementioned Lady Bridget also had, from God, these special graces of great virtue and wonder: the first is that when she was saying anything that would be an offense to God, at once she felt in her mouth a very great bitterness, as it were, of sulphur. And by this she knew at once that she had offended God; and, bringing that word back into her memory, at once and without delay she confessed it to her confessor with great sorrow and tears. Also, when anyone spoke to her any sly or vicious words that would offend God, at once she felt in her nostrils a horrible stench of sulphur, which she could hardly tolerate. And this was a sign that God had then been offended by the words of that person - a thing that we proved almost an infinite number of times.

Moreover, when any person asked her about some doubt in his conscience and sought from her advice and a special remedy that would be very good, she then used to answer him: ”Pray to God about this. And we too shall think, and we shall do what we can for you - although I am an unworthy sinner.” In fact, after three days or so and sometimes on the very same day, she would answer that same person - if the person were spiritual and honest - having first lifted her hands toward heaven and saying this: ”I am a sinner unworthy to say such things; nevertheless, know that Jesus Christ appeared to me at prayer and told me what reply I might make to the fact that you asked such and such, etc.”

And then she gave him the words that she had had from Christ or from the Blessed Virgin Mary as the response to this matter. Or else when she was well, she wrote down with her own hand and in her mother tongue the words divinely given to her; and she had them most faithfully translated into the Latin tongue by us, her confessors. And afterward, she listened to the translation together with her own writing that she herself had written, so that there might be not one word more added there or missing but only what she herself had divinely heard and seen in the vision.

If, in fact, she was ill, she called her confessor and her writer - a secretary specially assigned to this - and then, with great devotion and fear of God and sometimes with tears, she reported to him those words in her own vernacular and with a certain attentive elevation of mind, as if she were reading them in a book. And then the confessor said these words in the Latin tongue for the writer, and he wrote them down right there in her presence. And afterward, when the words had been written out, she wanted to listen to them; and she listened very diligently and attentively. And so she gave or sent this writing to those who were making the inquiry. This has often - yes, very often - been proven in experience by the lady queen and the archbishop of Naples; also by the queen and the king and the princes and many others from the kingdom of Cyprus and from the kingdom of Sicily; and by men, and by women too, from Italy, from Sweden, and even from Spain.

Moreover, it also happened very often that to the same Lady Bridget were revealed the most secret thoughts and doubts of those who came to her and even of certain other persons who were absent - things that they themselves had never at all made public by word or by writing or by sign. Witnesses to this are: Lord Nicholas of Nola, rector of the Patrimony; Lord Gomez de Albornoz, rector of the duchy of Spoleto; the lord count of Fondi; and many others, both religious and secular, to whom she told or wrote the innermost things of their hearts.

One also had to wonder at another grace that the aforesaid lady had from her bridegroom, Jesus Christ. For very often it happened that with devotion and charity, various persons asked her to pray to God for certain souls of some of their departed. And if it seemed to her that they were in purgatory - a place where they would need intercessory prayers - they asked her to tell this to them, the living questioners, and to make known to them by what alms and sacrifices or by what intercessory prayers of the living the dead could be freed from those pains.

Indeed, she received in writing the names of the departed; and with utmost charity and compassion, she prayed to God for them. And then, in prayer, she obtained answers from God as to whether those souls were in purgatory - and even about the manner of that purgatory and of those pains where they were - or whether they were in hell or in heaven. She was also given to know, clearly and distinctly, the manners of intercessory prayer and of alms giving through which those souls could be freed.

Good proof of this was experienced by some of the aforesaid living persons who were named above and who devoutly asked her about such things, and, concerning this, had divine answers from her in writing. Indeed when she herself, or any of us in her house, was anxious or doubtful about anything, at once and without great delay, through the revelations divinely given to her, she humbly brought back from Christ, her glorious bridegroom, or from our Lady, the Virgin Mary, a most precious answer explaining that business.

What more is there? For the testimony to so many virtues, to such great holiness and excellence, to such flowing and abundant grace divinely shining in her is all disclosed in the books of the Heavenly Revelations, which were divinely given to her, and in the Book of Questions, which was also given to her divinely, through an infusion from the Holy Spirit, in a wonderful manner and, as it were, in a single hour, while she was riding her horse and journeying to her villa in Vadstena, as is more fully recorded at the beginning of that same Book of Questions.

Testimony is also provided by visual experiences, for very often these things were seen by us ourselves and by many others in various parts of the world. For we have often seen that things that she had prophetically foretold many years ahead of time, afterwards actually came about in our experience. This is something that many others also saw and experienced. From them it may be clearly gathered (and it can be tested by the sayings of the saints) that she had from God the true spirit of prophecy and that intellectual vision had been divinely given to her.

The miracles too that since her death are happening through her merits and intercession bear now, and will in future bear, the clear witness of truth to the great graces that divinely sparkled in her. Indeed, after this lady had been called into the Spirit of God, she prophesied not only about the future - as did the prophets - but also about the present and the past; and she also clarified many things concerning certain doubtful matters in Sacred Scripture.

Moreover, like the apostles, she relinquished all that she owned; and, at God's instruction, she sent letters to the major personages of the whole of Christendom: namely, to the supreme pontiffs; to the emperors; to the kings and queens of France and of England, of Sicily and of Cyprus; to princes and princesses; to various prelates; to seculars and to religious; to kingdoms, and to lands and to cities. She also visited many lands personally, showing God's will to great and small alike for the good of their souls, redeemed by Christ's blood.

Like the holy evangelists, she wrote also about the birth of Christ and about his glorious life, and, in a similar way, about his death and about his resurrection and about his eternal glory, as is shown clearly enough in her revelations.

In truth, she was not without experience of martyrdom; for she mortified her body by living in toil and abstinence, by exposing herself to dangers on land and on sea, and by patiently enduring, for the sake of Christ's name, the reproaches and affronts of many, whether she was in grave physical infirmity or in health. From her innermost heart, she continually returned thanks to her bridegroom, Jesus Christ, for all adversities; and she prayed suppliantly to God for those who offended her.

How a certain lady who had died appeared to her and foretold to her the future.

Now, during the first month that Lady Bridget came to the said monastery of Cistercian monks - namely, Saint Mary's of Alvastra - a certain lady, already dead and very well known to her, appeared to her at prayer and said: ”To you shall be given understanding of spiritual things; in all things, therefore, humble yourself. And that you may know this with greater certainty, behold, I give to you a threefold sign.

The first is that I have been gravely purged for the stubbornness of my conscience. The second: that my husband, who is not my husband, now seeks something carnal - namely, carnal intercourse with another woman in opposition to God - and it will be, for him and his posterity, a cause of tribulation. The third is that you will cross the sea; and you will die in a glorious place, in Rome.”

Moreover, the lady appeared to her a second time and said: ”I want to inform you of my situation; for it thus pleases God that as we have loved each other while both living in the flesh, so we should now love each other in spirit. I - to speak using a similitude - have been put, as it were, in thick glass and can hear, but not yet reach, the things that I wish for. Thus, I can understand and desire and hope for those everlasting joys; but I have not yet attained to the full until the glass, by God's will, becomes more thin and sheer.

And this has been because two things weighed me down in the world: namely, a facility of anger; and the fact that I was not content with the things that I had, but wanted always to have more. Therefore induce those who were my friends to have chalices made for me, in which the sacrifice of my Lord Jesus Christ may be offered; and second, to have remembrance of me made during the year by those who are the friends of God. For by such means I shall, without a doubt, be more quickly freed from this punishment.”

What sort of things happened during life to that aforesaid lady who was the sister of Lady Bridget's husband and who thus appeared to her.

That said lady who after death appeared to Lady Bridget was very famous for her fasts and prayers. And one time, when she was seriously ill, the devil appeared to her in a most hideous form, intending as if to snatch her as she lay there. In fact, violently terrified, she called out: ”For eternity,” she said, ”I shall be damned!” As she many times repeated these words, her confessor spoke to her: ”Why,” he said, ”do you speak these words, my Lady, when you have always loved God with all your heart?”

She, however, could make no answer save as before: ”I shall be damned for eternity!” Finally, she fell silent in the hands of those who held her; in a wonderful way, her face began to change and to take on colors and to be, in color, now white and now a rosy red. While those present were wondering, she said in a loud voice: ”Blessed are you, my God, who have created and have freed me. I confess you and I bless you.”

But when she had regained her breath and was returning to herself, she called her confessor and other virtuous men and said to them: ”I saw the devil in a most vile form. Taking fright at his appearance, I believed that I would be damned. And while I was in this terrible anxiety, I saw Christ, as it were, standing on the cross. As the devil fled away, Christ said: 'When a year has rolled by, you will see the same vision, but not the devil. And this will be a sign to you, when you see it, that at once your life will be at an end.' ” And so it happened; for when the year had rolled by, on that very same date she saw Christ; and then her soul was loosed from the flesh after long purgation.

How this lady appeared a third time to Christ's bride, Lady Bridget.

This said lady also appeared a third time after her death to that same Lady Bridget and said: ”What I longed for, I now have. My former torments have been consigned to oblivion, and my love is now perfect. But as for you: be obedient! For you are going to come into the society of the great.”

How, after the death of her husband, Lady Bridget distributed her goods.

With her husband dead, at once Lady Bridget distributed all her goods among her children and the poor. She changed her way of living and dressing; and she would have done even greater things but for the obstacle of the fact that she had been instructed in a revelation to make a pilgrimage to Rome. And when she was scorned by the nobles for the sudden change and the cheapness of her clothing, she answered: ”It is neither for you that I start, nor for you that I stop. For I have determined in my heart to tolerate injurious words. Pray, therefore, for me that I may be able to persevere.”

How she was divinely instructed to go to the king of Sweden.

And so, when she had been instructed in spirit to go to the king of Sweden, and when she pleaded the excuse that she did not know what to say to him, this answer was made to her by God: ”When you arrive,” he said, ”open your mouth; and I will fill it.” Therefore, when she arrived, divine words were at once poured into her - not only words that pertained to the king, but also many that were about the future.

How she was sent to a bishop and he acknowledged her coming.

This same Lady Bridget also came to a certain bishop of proven life and devotion and said to him some words divinely revealed to her. When he heard those words, he, in his own conscience, discovered - right down to the last point - what she herself had understood in spirit: namely, things that, except for God and himself, no human at all had ever known. For the said lord bishop had certain less rational desires, and, in some things, a zeal at variance with knowledge; and he practiced fasts that went beyond nature. Therefore, he more willingly accepted her charitable admonitions, corrected everything by the standard of charity, and spoke to her: ”Last night,” he said, ”I definitely saw you entering toward me and removing from my heart very great burdens. Therefore, not only do I believe your words, but I also see in my soul that God is doing wonderful things with you.”

How she prohibited the king from imposing unjust imposts and tributes.

When the king of Sweden was hard pressed to pay a certain sum of money and was arranging to put the burden on the community of the realm contrary to the statutes and his oaths, Lady Bridget replied to him: ”My Lord, do not do this; for you will not be immune from the wrath of God. But take instead my two sons; and pawn them as hostages until you can pay; and do not offend your God.” Then, on that very day, there came to her the following vision in which Christ spoke to Lady Bridget and said this: ”Just as a kingdom has sometimes been saved because of the charity of one human being, so some kingdoms have been lost because of one person's new inventions and burdensome taxes.

I give you an example of this in the case of the following kingdom. For its king himself trusted in money - exacted by fraud or feigned justice from his people and from travelers - more than he trusted in me. Therefore, he lost his life and left his kingdom in trouble.

Others who succeeded him turned his crooked inventions into custom, and, as it were, into law. But if a king trusts in me, his God, and the community of the realm is petitioned for assistance with charity, then I am able to save and to restore to peace more quickly because of that charity. Therefore, if the king desires to prosper, let him keep his promise to me and keep truth with the community of his realm; and let him especially beware of introducing new inventions or tributes or technicalities. In his difficulties, let him follow the advice of those who fear God, and not the advice of the covetous; for it is better to suffer some adversity in this world than to sin knowingly against me and against his own soul.”

How the devil wanted to deceive her.

One day, when Lady Bridget was going, at the Spirit's instruction, to visit a certain man obsessed by the devil, the horse on which she was accustomed to ride, and which had previously been very gentle, suddenly so reared up from the ground that the horseshoes on its hooves could all be seen. As a result of this rearing, that same lady suffered pain in her back for a long time, whereby she was given to understand that the devil begrudged this sinner's conversion. In fact that man being visited - a man noble, by the world's standards, and great - was vexed by the devil; and especially in her presence, he was disturbed, as it were, more gravely than usual.

Then that same man spoke many horrible things against God and said to her: ”Oh, how unlike are your spirit in you and my spirit in me! But when it pleases the Spirit who is in you, I shall be perfectly healed; for he himself, because of my disbelief and my hidden demerits, has given me over into the hands of a cruel exactor.” She answered him: ”I promise you that you shall be quickly healed, but I ask why you speak such great abominations against God.” And he said: ”I do not rule myself.” When he had said this word, he began to speak, as it were, more bitterly against God and to blaspheme him, saying: ”Him who created heaven and earth, I worship; about your new God Christ, be silent!” Then the bride of Christ said: ”Be silent, wretched devil, in your speech against God; for even if you are this creature's punisher, nevertheless you shall not be his eternal owner.” And at once that man, as if drowsing, fell silent; but after several days, he was cured.

Still another miracle took place. In a revelation, it had been divinely told to the aforementioned Lady Bridget that on God's behalf she should instruct a certain Brother Peter - the prior of the Cistercian order's monastery of Saint Mary of Alvastra in Sweden - to write the books of the revelations that had been divinely given to that same Lady Bridget in spiritual vision. This same prior was a very simple man; and he would for no reason set his hand to writing; for he reckoned himself, because of his ignorance, less than suitable for so great a work. Then he was driven by Christ with the fear of death - and almost died - until he consented. And when his consent was given, he was suddenly cured without any lapse or interval of time.

So too a demoniac in East Gothland. In the presence of two trustworthy witnesses, at words from the mouth of the aforesaid religious - words whose form this lady heard from Christ and which the brother said to the demon according to Christ's instruction - then indeed the demoniac was cleansed.

Moreover, another demoniac in Sweden was cleansed in the same manner by the same religious, in the presence of trustworthy witnesses, at the instruction of the aforesaid Lady Bridget.

Moreover, through the intervention of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who with Christ appeared to the said Lady Bridget, a certain public prostitute was converted through the prayer of that same Lady Bridget. Moreover, many magnates in the kingdom of Sweden were converted when at one and the same time and place - with the exception of those ungrateful to Christ - they experienced a movement of their hearts for the better: a movement caused by him at the words of the same Lady Bridget and which they confessed had been sent by him.

How Lady Bridget was judged by a certain bishop in his heart, and what things came to her.

One time, at a banquet, when the bride of Christ was sitting at table with a certain devout bishop and, in God's honor, was making use of the delicacies that had been served, she was judged by the bishop interiorly in his mind; for he said in his heart: ”Why does this lady of such great spirit not abstain from delicate foods?” Then, toward vespers, she herself, knowing nothing of such thoughts, heard these things in spirit: ”Say to the bishop, 'I am he who filled the shepherd with my Spirit. Was this because of the shepherd's fasting? I am he who made married men prophets. What had they done to merit this? I commanded a prophet to take an adulteress as his wife. Did he not obey? I am he who spoke as well to Job in his delights as when he sat upon the dunghill.

Therefore, because I am wonderful, I do all things that please me without dependence on preceding merits.' ” And so, hearing this, the bishop recognized himself and now humbled asked the same Lady Bridget to pray for him. And then, on the third day, the most Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to that same bride of Christ and said to her: ”Say to that same bishop that because he is accustomed to begin all his sermons with praise of me and because his judgment was made with charity rather than envy, his charity thus merits consolation. Tell him, therefore, that I want to be a mother to him and that I want to present his soul to God. And now I shall expound to you how he is the seventh animal of the animals shown to you and how he will carry my words into the presence of kings and pontiffs.” This revelation of the seven animals is more fully recorded in the book of the revelations.

How Lady Bridget returned from the king of Sweden and how her son died.

And so, when Lady Bridget returned from the king of Sweden to the monastery of Alvastra, she found that a son of hers - who, when she left, had long been infirm - was now in extremis. And she wept much over his long infirmity and reckoned that it was happening because of the sins of his parents. Then the devil appeared to her and said: ”Why, woman, with all this water of tears, are you weakening your sight and laboring in vain? Could water ascend to heaven?” In the same hour, Christ appeared to his bride in his human form and said: ”This boy's infirmity has not been caused by constellations of stars - as the foolish say - nor by his sins. He has become infirm because of his physical condition and so that his crown will be greater.

Therefore, if he has hitherto been called by his own name, Benedict, Ulf's son, from now on he shall be called the son of tears and prayers; and I shall put an end to his distress. In fact, on the fifth day afterward, there was heard a most sweet singing, as it were, of birds between the boy's bed and the wall; and, behold, then the boy's soul went forth; and the Holy Spirit said to that same Lady Bridget: ”Behold what tears accomplish! Now the son of waters has passed over to his rest. Therefore the devil hates the tears of good people, which proceed from divine charity.”

About a brother who lay in his infirmity for three years and more.

In the said monastery of Alvastra, a certain lay brother of holy life was infirm for three years and more. At Christ's command, his bride visited the brother and said to him: ”Repent with greater attention because there is something hidden in your heart. As long as you keep it hidden, you will not be able to die.” When he answered that he had nothing that had not been disclosed in penance, she said: ”Ask with what intention you entered the monastery and with what intention you have lived up to now.” Then he dissolved in tears and said: ”Blessed be God who has sent you to me. Now that you have spoken, I want to tell the truth; for I do have something hidden that I never dared to betray because, as often as I repented, my tongue was always, as it were, tied and indeed excessive shame invaded me so that I did not open the matter.

Therefore, as often as I made my confession, I invented for myself a new conclusion to my words, saying at the end: 'I declare to God and to all God's saints that I am culpable of all the crimes that I have told to you, Father, and of all those that I have not told.' I believed that through this conclusion, all was forgiven. But now, if it should please God, I would gladly tell the whole world.” And when a confessor had been called, he fully explained everything with tears; and he did not survive long afterward.

About a temptation to gluttony with which Lady Bridget was tempted.

Now at one time, Lady Bridget was so gravely tempted with gluttony that for hunger, she could scarcely think of anything else. Finally, in spirit, she saw an Ethiopian holding in his hand, as it were, a morsel of bread and a certain very handsome youth holding a gilded vessel. And the youth said: ”Why do you solicit that woman who has been given over into my custody?” The Ethiopian responded: ”Because she glories in an abstinence that she has not had; for she does not cease to fill her belly until it is full of delicate dung. I therefore hold forth my morsel that grosser things may, for her, become sweet.”

The youth responded: ”You know quite well that she does not have an immaterial nature as we do but, rather, a sack made of earth. Since earth is slippery and restless, she needs continual re-creation.” The Ethiopian said: ”Your Christ fasted, eating nothing; and the prophets ate bread and drank water in moderation. Therefore they merited lofty things.

And how will that woman merit when she always feels a satiety?” The youth responded: ”Is Christ not yours too as well as ours?” To which the other said: ”By no means at all! For I will never humble myself to him but will rather act in opposition to him because I shall not return to his glory!” The youth responded: ”Our Christ taught us to fast, not so that the body would be weakened beyond measure, but so that it would be humbled and not grow insolent in opposition to its soul. Our Christ does not ask for things impossible to nature but for moderation; he does not ask the quality or the quantity of what one eats but, rather, the quality of the eater's intention and charity.”

To which the Ethiopian said: ”It is just that what that woman did not experience in youth, she should feel in old age.” In rebuttal, the youth said: ”The praiseworthy thing is abstinence from sin. There is no obstacle to heaven in purple dye or in delicate flesh when these things are possessed together with the love of God. Sometimes the customs of one's upbringing must be maintained well, with thanksgiving, lest the flesh be too seriously weakened.” After this, at that same hour, the Virgin Mary appeared to her - wearing a crown - and said to the Ethiopian: ”Be silent, you negotiator; look askance, because she has been assigned to me!” And the Ethiopian spoke: ”If I cannot do anything else,” he said, ”I will cast a bramble of the Christ's-thorn plant onto the hem of her garments.” To which the Virgin said: ”I will help her. And as often as you cast it on, it shall be cast back into your face; and her crown will be doubled.” Not long after this vision, the whole temptation to gluttony was taken away.

How she was tempted at prayer.

During her prayers, the bride of Christ was sometimes tempted even with unclean thoughts. Blessed Mary appeared to her and said: ”The devil is like an envious spy, seeking to accuse and impede the good. Therefore try and pray as long as you are being tempted because your desire and good effort will count for you as prayer; and if you cannot cast out of your mind the sordid matters that come to it, those efforts will count for you as merit provided that you not consent and as these things are against your will.”

How the prayer of the bride of God was of profit to someone.

A certain religious was tempted for twelve years concerning the Sacrament of the Body of Christ and concerning the name of blessed Mary, whom he could never name without sordid thought and blasphemy. And so for a long time he omitted even the Angelic Salutation. With tears, he asked Lady Bridget, the bride of Christ, to pray for him; and, obtaining her prayers, he was so freed that, afterward, he rarely pronounced the name of blessed Mary without great joy; and the Body of Christ became so sweet to him that he could not rest on a day when he did not celebrate Mass.

For a long time, this same man had a desire to visit the holy places in Jerusalem; but, out of obedience and because of his profession, he was not permitted to do so. When he was in extremis, he was enraptured and saw all those places in spirit just as did those who have seen them in body; and when he had shown the arrangement of those places to those who had previously visited them, he passed away, exulting in the Lord.

How the bride of Christ was instructed to go to Rome and to testify to the grace of God.

However, after the passage of almost two years in the Cistercian order's aforesaid monastery of Saint Mary of Alvastra, Christ instructed her to go to Rome, even as it is recorded in the following revelation.

A revelation concerning the same thing.

Our Lord Jesus Christ once spoke to this same Bridget and said: ”Go to Rome, where the streets are paved with gold and reddened with the blood of saints and where there is a compendium - i.e., a shorter way - to heaven because of the indulgences that the holy pontiffs have merited by their prayers. Moreover, you shall stay there in Rome until you see the supreme pontiff and the emperor there at the same time in Rome, and to them you shall announce my words.”

What she did on the way to Rome.

After she had gone forth from her fatherland, she was divinely instructed in a vision to give up her customary reading and learn grammar. This was when she was given blessed Agnes for her solace and Master Peter, her confessor, for a teacher to instruct her and that she might obey him. Moreover, the said lady, in a brief time, made so much progress in grammatical knowledge that she knew in part how to read, to understand, and to utter Latin speech.

How she was divinely instructed to go to Naples and visit there the places of saints.

After she had stayed a long time in Rome, Christ spoke to her thus and said: ”Permission is given you to visit the holy places in Sicily because in that place are the bodies of many who loved me with all their heart. Outstanding among them is Thomas, my apostle. When you arrive there, I am going to show you certain secrets.” And since she hesitated somewhat lest her money for expenses chance to fail on the way, the Lord answered: ”One who possesses a meadow does not spare the meadow in preference to his laboring horse. So I, the Lord, provide for my friends when their own providence fails; and I stir up the souls of others to do good to them.” Look in the Book of Heavenly Revelations for a certain vision that was given to Lady Bridget by Christ in the city of Ortona and which speaks about the praise of blessed Thomas and about that kingdom.

How in Rome she was divinely instructed to go to Jerusalem although the instruction did not determine the time.

Christ once spoke to her and said: ”I am like an eagle that foresees those flying in the air who want to harm its young and forestalls them by its own flight lest they do the harm; so I foresee the times and the ways and the ways' difficulties and the dispositions of souls. And so I say to you: sometimes, 'Stand and wait'; now, 'Go and hurry.' Therefore, because it is already the time, go now to the places previously shown to you: where there was a vessel, clean and not clean; and where there was a lamb, shorn and not shorn; where a lion roared and did not roar; where a serpent moved and did not move; where an eagle flew to a place from which it has never withdrawn.”

See in the Book of Questions, in the last and the next-to-last chapters, where these things are recorded and divinely clarified. And when she complained of bodily infirmity and of decrepit age, then an answer came to her from Christ: ”Who is the Establisher of nature? Is it not I? Therefore I will increase your strength. I will provide for the way. I will guide you and lead you back to this place in Rome.”

On a certain occasion - fifteen years before the incident that we last mentioned above - when Lady Bridget was praying in Rome, the Virgin Mary appeared to her and said: ”Because of the exceeding love that you have for me, I tell you that you will go to Jerusalem when it pleases my Son; and then you will go also to Bethlehem; and I then will show to you how I gave birth to my Son, Jesus Christ.” This promise the Virgin Mary fulfilled sixteen years later, when Lady Bridget was in these said places - as is more amply recorded in the books of revelations, in a certain revelation made to her in Bethlehem that speaks of the Virgin Mary's childbearing.

How she was divinely commanded, while she was in Jerusalem, to return again to Rome.

On a certain occasion, while Lady Bridget was praying in Jerusalem, Christ appeared to her and said: ”All the places that other pilgrims visit, you too will visit. For there are still other places where I was in the body and which should be visited; but it is sufficient for you to seek out the nearer ones because of your infirmity and because it is not yet the time of that mercy of which mention has been made; for there are very few who reflect upon the charity of my passion and of my patience. But when you have come back from the Jordan, prepare yourselves for your journey; for there are still some things to be sent to the supreme princes of the earth.” Look for the many and beautiful revelations that are contained in the Heavenly Book and which were made to that same Lady Bridget in Jerusalem and in Bethlehem.

About a special sign of the Spirit.

One should also know that from the first time that the bride of God was visited by the Spirit of God she had this sign: that, when she was approached by human beings full of diabolic spirit or who were averse to goodness, she felt so great a stench in her nostrils and so bitter a taste in her mouth that she could hardly bear it. Wherefore, when a certain man - who had undergone a change away from goodness and had returned to his earlier sins - had sat down with the bride of God and was speaking with her, he said to her: ”What is this about a spirit that you are said to have? Is it from you or from someone else or from a demon?”

To this she - who scarcely had the strength to bear his stench - responded: ”You have a fetid indweller, and fetid things proceed from your mouth. Repent, therefore, lest there come upon you the vengeance of God!” The man went away angry; and, when he had gone to sleep, he heard voices without number saying: ”Let us drag the pig to the places for pigs because he has spurned the warnings of salvation.” Returning to himself, he perfectly corrected his life; and his odor was perceived by the said lady to have changed into sweetness.

A similar thing, as it were, happened to the same Lady Bridget in Famagusta, in the kingdom of Cyprus, with a certain religious to whom she was speaking; and with many other people, this similarly happened to her.

Item concerning the same thing.

The bride of God had also this special trait: that, in the twenty-eight years from the time she began to have the Spirit of God, she never went or made any change to other cities nor ever tarried in any place except in accord with the infusion and instruction of the Holy Spirit.

About the city of Milan.

When she was in Milan, she stayed there a long time; and there, amidst other words, the Blessed Virgin Mary responded to the words of a certain great master of theology, as is recorded in the Book of Heavenly Revelations.

About Rome.

In truth, the said Lady Bridget stayed in Rome a rather long time, not only because of the indulgences but also because of the promises to be fulfilled. There, in manifold ways, she experienced visitations both concerning the state of the City and concerning the reparation of all states. There too, she was informed with certainty about many things in the future, as is shown in the revelations made to her, which are more amply recorded in her books. There also in Rome the promise was fulfilled that had been made to her in a revelation in Sweden many years before: namely, that she, would go to Rome and would stay there until she saw there the pope and the emperor.

Moreover, when the lord pope, Urban V, wanted to return from Italy to Avignon, the Virgin Mary appeared to the said Lady Bridget and said to her some words in a vision, saying that this same lord pope should not return from Rome, nor from Italy, to Avignon; otherwise, the outcome would be to his loss in a brief time - as is more amply recorded in that revelation which the same Lady Bridget, with her own hand, presented to that same lord pope in Montefiascone. And present there, on that occasion, was our lord pope, Gregory XI, who was then called Cardinal Beaufort.

Moreover there, on that occasion in Montefiascone, the Virgin Mary instructed her to tell, on her own behalf, a certain hermit-priest Alphonsus, a friend and acquaintance of hers, to write down and copy the books of the revelations that had been divinely given to her and which indeed until then had been kept secret. At the death of this same lady, Christ confirmed this by instructing the same Lady Bridget to tell her confessors to hand over to the said hermit all the secret revelations and all others that they had not yet handed over in order that this same hermit might have them written out and that he might publish them to the nations for the honor and glory of God.

Moreover, in Naples and in Jerusalem too, she stayed for a long time; and there she saw some visions concerning the state and the tribulation of kingdoms and concerning the nativity and the passion of Jesus Christ and concerning the calling of the nations. Wherefore, in Jerusalem, Christ spoke to her: ”My words,” he said, ”must for a long time be heard and proclaimed; works and signs will come afterward.

Therefore, know that there are many not yet born who are going to receive my words sweetly. Wherefore, as it says in my gospel: 'Blessed are they who hear the words of God'; so I say now: 'Blessed are they who now hear my words and will perform them in deed.' Nevertheless, know that after your passing more will receive my words and will follow them with sweetness, for they are not like a flower that will fall but like a fruit that lasts for eternity.” One should know also that although during her husband's life Lady Bridget had done some penance in a hidden way, nevertheless after his death she was not content with this penance. Indeed, for thirty years she used no linen garments except the veils for her head.

Also, before her bed, she had them put on the pavement a coverlet and a little cushion for under her head; and thus she used to sleep there, having over her a single garment or a mantle. When questioned as to how she could rest there in the very intense cold that prevails in those parts of Sweden, she spoke in answer: ”I feel,” she said, ”within myself so great a warmth from divine grace that the cold that is without does not much urge me toward a softer bed.”

Day and night, however, she was accustomed to perform so many genuflections, bows, and prostrations that it was a wonder that so tender a person could endure such great labors.

It was her custom too, on Fridays, to pour on her bare flesh flaming drops from a burning candle so that they left wounds remaining; and if at any time before the next Friday these wounds healed somewhat by themselves, she then at once put her nails in and plowed them so that her body would not be without the suffering of wounds; and this she did for the sake of the memory of the passion of Christ. She also had knotty bands of cord with which she girded herself right against her flesh and which she never removed, day or night, whether she was ill or well.

When, however, she came to these parts of Rome and of Italy, she visited the holy places with devotion and great frequency; and with sufficiently great toil to herself, she observed the practice of not speaking voluntarily with anyone on the way unless she happened to have been asked a question - in which case she replied with very few words to the one speaking to her. And whenever she uttered any unconsidered word, then at once, on the cord that hung upon her breast for saying the paternoster, she diligently noted that word by which she had offended God, in order that she might not neglect to confess it and make satisfaction for it by means of penance.

Similarly too, when she visited shrines, she held her eyes in check so as not to look voluntarily at the faces of human beings. When, however, it happened that she had suddenly looked into someone's face, at once, on that same chaplet that hung at her neck, she kept a token, until, through penance, satisfaction for it had been made.

From her infancy, she was accustomed to confess every Friday. But nevertheless, she was not content with this; no, she also confessed more than once on every day of the year concerning light words and thoughts. For in her there was fear of God together with great love of him.

On Fridays, indeed, because of Christ's passion and the bitterness of the drink of gall proffered to him before his death, she was accustomed to hold in her mouth a certain very bitter herb, which is called genciana. She also did this on other days when she had uttered some unconsidered or incautious word.

In making her confession, she was very humble and very prompt in fulfilling whatever things were enjoined upon her. Moreover, she so loved true humility that in no place did she wish to be without an instructor whom she humbly obeyed in all things. Moreover, she so loved poverty that everything that she had in her possession she put into the hands of another; and when she wished to have something, she asked her confessor the master for it in the name of Jesus Christ as humbly as if she had never possessed it.

She attended to the welfare of the persons living with her even more than she did to her own. For sometimes she was actually concealing her own ruined shoes even while asking for new ones to be given to others; and she acted similarly concerning other necessary things. Indeed, she very patiently endured everything that came; and the Blessed Virgin once spoke to her thus in a vision: ”You,” she said, should be like a mirror, clear and clean, and like a sharp thorn - a mirror through honest and godly behavior and through good example, but a thorn through denunciation of sinners.

In fact, Lady Bridget well demonstrated the latter point; for, wherever she was, she did this to the best of her ability. She showed it well in Famagusta while, in the presence of the king and the queen and the princes and the other magnates of the kingdom of Cyprus, she seriously and boldly narrated a revelation made to her in Jerusalem concerning the kingdom of Cyprus - despite the fact that at that time she was physically weak and infirm. This revelation too is contained in the books of the Heavenly Revelations.

Moreover, in Naples too she did not keep silent about a revelation made to her concerning the people of that same city but related it in the presence of the archbishop and three masters of theology and other doctors of canon and civil law and the other lords and prudent men, both clerical and lay. She intrepidly reproved the sins of the city and showed how they might amend their lives - just as Jesus Christ had instructed her in a revelation and as it is more clearly and more amply recorded in the books of revelations.

Furthermore, while she was in Jerusalem, she began to weaken; and this infirmity of hers lasted for a whole year. And both at sea and on land, she most patiently endured fatigue and pain; and it was of this infirmity that she died in Rome.

It happened, finally, in Rome - five days before the day of her passing - that our Lord Jesus Christ appeared to her in front of the altar that stood in her chamber. He showed himself with a joyful face and said to her: ”I had done to you what a bridegroom usually does, concealing himself from his bride so that he may be more ardently desired. Thus I have not visited you with consolations during this time; for it was the time of your testing. Therefore, now that you have been tested, go forward and prepare yourself; for now is the time when - as I had promised you - before my altar, you shall be clothed and consecrated as a nun. And henceforth you shall be counted not only as my bride, but also as a nun and a mother in Vadstena.”

This is a certain villa that is called by this name; and there stands that monastery of nuns and brothers whose construction was revealed to her by God and where the said lady was to be buried. Finally Christ said to her: ”Nevertheless, know that you will lay down your body in Rome until it come to the place prepared for it. For it pleases me to spare you from your labors and to accept your will in place of the completed action.”

After these and many other things had been said, she made mention of and arrangements for some persons living with her and whom, before death, she said she had seen standing in God's presence.

After those things had been heard, the Lord added these words: ”On the morning of the fifth day, after receiving the sacraments, call together one by one all those whom I named above; and to them tell the things to be done. And thus, amidst these words and their hands, you will come to your monastery - i.e., into my joy; and your body will be placed in Vadstena.” Then, as the fifth day approached, at the moment of dawn, Christ appeared to her again and consoled her. But when Mass had been said and after she had received the sacraments, in the hands of the aforesaid persons she sent forth her spirit.
"So let us be confident, let us not be unprepared, let us not be outflanked, let us be wise, vigilant, fighting against those who are trying to tear the faith out of our souls and morality out of our hearts, so that we may remain Catholics, remain united to the Blessed Virgin Mary, remain united to the Roman Catholic Church, remain faithful children of the Church."- Abp. Lefebvre

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