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Mel Gibson, Biblical Accuracy 

The Other Passion Source:

 

The 15 Prayers of St. Bridget

March 5, 2004

 

Anti- Semitism

 

1 John 4:20-21

20 If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?
21 And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.
[KJV]

 

There has been much controversy over the possible anti-semitism that could erupt from the viewing of Mel Gibson's 'The Passion of The Christ.' Obviously, statements that have been made by Mr. Gibson's father, Hutton Gibson, brought much into question, Feb 19, 2004. 

In an interview with Steve Feuerstein, on WSNR radio's Speak Your Piece, broadcast on Monday, February 23, 2004, Hutton Gibson argued that many European Jews counted as death camp victims of the Nazi regime had in fact fled to countries like Australia and the United States.

"In the first place the Holocaust is a terrible misnomer. First of all a Holocaust is a burnt offering to G-d. Now these people were not offering themselves up to G-d. If these people were being killed they were being taken there screaming howling and yelling for they were being persecuted and murdered. That is not a Holocaust."

"Secondly there were not that many Jews under Hitler’s power under his sway. They claimed that there were 6.2 million in Poland before the war and after the war there were 200,000 therefore he (Hitler) must have killed six million of them. They simply got up and left! They were all over the Bronx and Brooklyn and Sydney and Los Angeles."

"It's all -maybe not all fiction- but most of it is," he said, adding that the gas chambers and crematoria at camps like Auschwitz would not have been capable of exterminating so many people.

"Do you know what it takes to get rid of a dead body? To cremate it?" he said. "It takes a litre of petrol and 20 minutes. Now, six million of them? They (the Germans) did not have the gas to do it. That's why they lost the war."...." 1 

During his radio interview, Hutton Gibson, 85, said Jews were out to create "one world religion and one world government" and outlined a conspiracy theory involving Jewish bankers, the US Federal Reserve and the Vatican, among others. He also caused a commotion last year when he made similar remarks in a New York Times article. 

The Simon Wiesenthal Center, in a press release, February 19, 2004, discussing the WSNR radio interview, stated:

"In June 2003, Wiesenthal Center researchers noted that Hutton Gibson was a featured speaker at the Barnes Review Conference sponsored by America's leading racist of the last half century and Holocaust denier Willis Carto. Among the other attendees were Australian Holocaust denier Frederick Tobin from the Adelaide Institute, and Ingrid Rimland, wife of Canadian/German holocaust denier Ernst Zundel." 2

In a television interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC, Mel Gibson accused the New York Times of taking advantage of his father, and he warned Sawyer against broaching the subject again.

"He's my father. Gotta leave it alone Diane. Gotta leave it alone," 

Mr. Gibson then stated, 

"Do I believe that there were concentration camps where defenseless and innocent Jews died cruelly under the Nazi regime? Of course I do; absolutely," he said. "It was an atrocity of monumental proportion."

In an exclusive interview with Peggy Noonan, for Reader's Digest, and via an online press release, the following was stated by Mel Gibson:

ON THE HOLOCAUST: * When asked by Noonan to go on the record confirming that the Holocaust did indeed happen, Gibson responded: "I have friends and parents of friends who have numbers on their arms. The guy who taught me Spanish was a Holocaust survivor. He worked in a concentration camp in France. Yes, of course. Atrocities happened. War is horrible. The Second World War killed tens of millions of people. Some of them were Jews in concentration camps. Many people lost their lives. In the Ukraine, several million starved to death between 1932 and 1933. During the last century 20 million people died in the Soviet Union."

...ON PUBLIC REACTION TO THE FILM: * "I expected some level of turbulence because when one delves into religion and politics -- people's deeply held beliefs -- you're going to stir things up. But it was a surprise to have shots being fired over the bow while I was still filming, and then to have various loud voices in the press -- people who hadn't seen the work -- really slinging mud." "My detractors would say that it (the movie) is going to promote hatred. I disagree. I think that's utter nonsense. The absurdity of that staggers me," Gibson said." 3

In a February 18, 2004, article entitled "Mel Gibson's dangerous Passion," from the NYDailey, it was stated, "Gibson, a Traditionalist Catholic, says the Holy Ghost guided him in directing "The Passion" and he accepts the Gospels as factual. He responded to criticism by saying he had deleted the movie's most offensive line, a quotation from the Gospel of Matthew in which the Jewish mob says, "His blood be on us and on our children!"

But in an interview with Diane Sawyer on ABC, he said that he had only removed the subtitles that showed the words, not the words themselves spoken in Aramaic.

Diane Sawyer narrates: Gibson says the words will not appear onscreen in the movie but I asked if they're still in there in Aramaic:

SAWYER: "The scene in, is that they're in Aramaic even?

GIBSON: "You can hear it, but under the crowd... you know... but ...it doesn't appear."
4

From my perspective as a Christian over thirty years. I have never once taken those words as an attack or condemnation of Jews. From my beliefs, the Jewish people involved who wanted Jesus crucified, just as the Romans, did not believe who Christ was. For many zealous in their beliefs, He was blaspheming God, and some were willing to say anything to deal with that concept. Yes, some wanted Him dealt with because He usurped their teaching and authority. But in the end. He was sacrificed to fulfill Scriptural prophecy. For all our sins. It has never been a blame issue to myself or our family or any of the many Christians that I know. These type of concepts really floor me, because to even look at other people with hate, defies who we are in Christ. To condemn un believing Jews or anyone else is so contrary to what we believe, as to be unfathomable to think people claiming to be of Christ not only blame the Jew's, but have referred to them as 'Christ killers.'

In looking further at the issue of anti-semitism, and whether The Passion movie can and will affect that issue, I asked a Jewish Christian, who lives in Britain, about European anti-semitism. 

These are some of his thoughts. 

"....As to the anti semitism here in Europe, it has never really gone away. I  served in Germany in the Army for two years in the early 80's and anti semitism was there, it was low profile, but it was there. I served here in London for a summer about two  years ago and was able to get a feel for Europe and the anti semitism. I saw it but it was not so open.  I then returned to serve here full time about ten months ago. Since my return you can see anti semitism is more out  in the open.  ... I can follow the trends and see what's going one from a first hand perspective.

I don't know if anti semitism has been affected by the movie at all over here...As this is a post Christian country and Christianity is as ridiculed as much if not more than Israel, no one is really taking  this movie as anti semitic but as a crazy religion that promotes the torture of it's God.  The anti semitism here is fueled by the Israeli/Arab crisis and the millions of Muslims living here in London. The anti Israel rhetoric has crossed into almost open anti semitism. BBC TV is openly biased against Israel to the point where BBC reporters sometimes  refers to Israel as the JEWS!  It is just another reason to blame Jews for the state of the world as history has done for thousands of years. Europe has been struggling for 50 years with the guilt of the Holocaust and now Israel/Jews  look bad and they have jumped on it... I am only trying to give my idea of it because it is so confusing here.

Most critics here look at the movie as something created by a crazy American Catholic, and as you read the movie reviews they are mixed with a revulsion for the Christian faith, Mel Gibson being an american and the comparing of the Arabs to Jesus on the cross.
Some speak about the movie causing  anti semitism but here the Jewish community is almost silent on the issue. Most of everything we hear  is from  US news and periodicals.  You can feel that the Jewish community  is trying to keep a low profile because  they are afraid of the direction Europe is going.

I am Jewish & have Israeli citizenship  but I have never been paranoid  of anti semitism, but it is something  that is actually here and open and real. ... now I am getting more anti Jewish comments  from non Jewish people than anti Christian...  in New York City we saw a visible change  after 9-11. We started to hear how 9-11 was caused  by the Jews and America's relationship with Israel. Here in London  it is Israel that has started this war in Iraq, and 9-11, and Afghanistan, etc, etc. Everything bad here is Israeli or American. It's strange,  the anti semitism almost seems to go hand in hand with anti americanism. I will tell you, Jesus, Jews and Americans are not liked here, and here I sit, an American Jew for Jesus with Israeli citizenship living in London with a Palestinian wife. I'm loving it! ..." 5

Now, back to the quote, said by Mr. Gibson to have been removed, yet in fact, was still within the movie. If there is no intent to have any agenda other than to present the most violent and graphic, un Biblically sound presentation of an embellished and historically inaccurate rendition, which is therefore, not a true presentation of what happened to Christ....that has been accomplished. I am still looking for the Scripture on artistic license, that allows one to change the Word of God and call it truth. And the Scripture that has 'believers' saying they should embrace that concept.

According to the Apostle Paul, people who teach or embrace another gospel or another Jesus...are to be accursed or identified and separated from. 2 Corinthians 11:4, Galatians 1:8,9....9 "As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed. [KJV]

From Strong's Concordance: "let him be accursed."

*** accursed <anathema>.

331. anayema anathema, an-ath'-em-ah 
from 394; a (religious) ban or (concretely) excommunicated (thing or person):--accused, anathema, curse, X great. 

That is all beside these concepts:

Romans 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; 19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath showed it unto them.
20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. ... 25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
[KJV]

It does need to be addressed if there were in fact beliefs that suggest there was another understanding other than what has been specifically stated by Mel Gibson, that, "To be anti-Semitic is a sin," the actor-director told Diane Sawyer. "It's been condemned by one papal council after another. To be anti-Semitic is to be un-Christian, and I'm not."

It is really unclear to this writer, what Mel Gibson fully believes. Various interviews which this writer has reviewed from over the past ten years suggest that he is in agreement with at least much of his father's views regarding the changes to the Catholic church and also his views on political and world control theories. Gibson is a traditionalist Catholic and believes pre-Vatican 2 was the correct Catholic theology. 

 

The Original Prayers of St. Bridget

 

Deuteronomy 4:23 -24

23.Take heed unto yourselves, lest ye forget the covenant of the LORD your God, which he made with you, and make you a graven image, or the likeness of any thing, which the LORD thy God hath forbidden thee.
24 For the LORD thy God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.
[KJV]

Many are worshipping the film, the actor particularly, that presented another Jesus, and even Mel Gibson, believing him to have been anointed and called by God for what many deem to be a holy work. Those that reject the film, are even being called 'enemies of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Exodus 20:3-5

3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:
5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
[KJV]

Throughout the movie, Mary was conveyed by Gibson as having special divine powers and knowledge, referenced as Mother, by the apostles, and in Catholic theology she is co-redemptrix-- meaning salvation comes from her.  In Catholic imagery, she is conveyed as having crucifixion holes in her hands and so on, which teaches she suffered on the cross with Christ, which was conveyed in various ways throughout the movie. Pope John Paul II stated: "She (Mary) completes in her flesh as already in her heart what is lacking in the suffering of Christ." 

In images and teachings she is viewed as sinless, and that she remained a virgin, which is contrary to:

Galatians 1:19 "James the Lord's brother."

Matthew 13:55 "Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? 56 And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?

Mark 6:3 " Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him."

Mark 15:40 [at the crucifixion] There were also women looking on afar off: among whom was Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James the less and of Joses, and Salome; [KJV]

Mary is viewed as co-redeemer, the advocate, and is to be prayed to for forgiveness of sins. That is why actor Jim Caviezel, who played Jesus, asked "Mary and Jesus" into his heart. Roman Catholics call Mary the "Queen of Heaven" and images and statues have her crowned as such, in many ceremonies. Some also believe that Mary ascended to heaven, and never faced physical death, with no Scripture to support any of these beliefs. 

According to Zenit, the official Catholic view is that Mary did die bodily, but was taken body and soul to heaven, she was sinless, is co-redeemer and stands at the right hand of Christ. 

"...The Council itself clarifies this: The divine Redemptor´s mother was "above all others and in a singular way the generous associate. ... She ... was united with him by compassion as he died on the Cross. In this singular way she cooperated by her obedience, faith, hope and burning charity in the work of the Savior in giving back supernatural life to souls. Wherefore she is our mother in the order of grace" (No. 61). "Taken up to heaven she did not lay aside this salvific duty, but by her constant intercession continued to bring us the gifts of eternal salvation." For this reason "the Virgin is invoked by the Church under the titles of Advocate, Auxiliatrix, Adjutrix and Mediatrix" (No. 62). 

...Can we add to the title Mediatrix that of co-redemptrix? In the light of the above, the answer is affirmative. In fact the Council itself, so as to avoid any false interpretation, adds that the use of these titles is legitimate. But it must be understood "that it neither takes away from nor adds anything to the dignity and efficaciousness of Christ the one Mediator" (ibid). ..."

[Zenit News Agency; Code: ZE02060101; Date: 2002-06-01, VATICAN CITY, JUNE 1, 2002, Papal Theologian Views Mary in Salvific History; The Sense in Which She Is Co-redeemer ; http://zenit.org/english/visualizza.phtml?sid=21475]

Another respected Catholic source states this about the Liturgy, and Marian feasts:

"...True devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary can be summed up in the phrase: "To Jesus through Mary." It is therefore fitting that Marian feasts are celebrated by the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. In this way Marian Devotion leads directly and clearly to Christ, the second person of the Blessed Trinity as should always be the case with true Marian devotion....Also, several Marian feasts are joint feasts of Mary and her Son, Jesus Christ;  for example, the Annunciation. This is so because immediately after Mary consented to become the Mother of God the Incarnation took place, that is, God the Son the second person of the Blessed Trinity became man - a small unborn child in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

...The Fourth Glorious Mystery of the Rosary. This celebration originated in the 5th or 6th Century. St. Juvenal of Jerusalem stated as early as the Council of Chalcedon in 451 that Our Lady, after her death, was assumed body and soul into heaven.

Pope Pius XII, on 1 November 1950, in Munificentissimus Deus
officially defined the doctrine of the Assumption as an article of the Catholic Faith. He stated:

". . . By the authority of Our Lord Jesus Christ, of the Blessed
Apostles Peter and Paul, and by Our Own authority, We pronounce, declare, and define as divinely revealed dogma: The Immaculate Mother of God, Mary ever Virgin, after her life on earth, was assumed, body and soul to the glory of heaven." [III, 44]

...."Since death is the punishment for sin, it might have seemed proper that the Divine Mother should have been exempt from it. But it pleased God to have Mary resemble Jesus in all things, and so He willed that even she should die, but a sweet and happy death. Three things tend to render death bitter: attachment to the world, remorse for one's sin, and the uncertainty of one's salvation. But Marys' death was entirely free from these causes of bitterness; for what soul was ever more detached from earthly goods and more united to God? Nor was it thinkable that any remorse of conscience could trouble her. who had been free from the least taint of actual or original sin; and she also had the fullest certainty of possessing divine grace. Death to her was very sweet, for it would unite her more closely to God by an eternal bond. The Doctors and Holy Fathers of the Church generally assert that
she died from no infirmity, but form pure love"...

...Pope Pius XII in the Papal Encyclical Ad Coeli Reginam proposed the traditional doctrine on the Queenship of Mary and established this feast for the Universal Church.

...Pope Pius IX said of Mary: "Turning her maternal Heart toward us and dealing with the affair of our salvation, she is concerned with the whole human race. Constituted by the Lord Queen of Heaven and earth, and exalted above all choirs of Angels and the ranks of Saints in Heaven, standing at the right hand of Her only-begotten Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, she petitions most powerfully with Her maternal prayers, and she obtains what she seeks."

...Pope XII added: "We commend that on the festival there be renewed the consecration of the human race to the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Upon this there is founded a great hope that there will rejoice in the triumph of religion and in Christian peace.

Therefore, let all approach with greater confidence now than before, to the throne of mercy and grace of our Queen and Mother to beg help in difficultly, light in darkness and solace in trouble and sorrow . . . . Whoever, therefore, honours the lady ruler of the Angels and of men - and let no one think themselves exempt from the payment of that tribute of a grateful and loving soul - let them call upon her as most truly Queen and as the Queen who brings the blessings of peace, that She may show us all, after this exile, Jesus, who will be our enduring peace and joy."

http://www.ewtn.com/library/LITURGY/FEAST.TXT

In Mary of Agreda's book 8, chapter VIII. in the Mystical City of God, is a description of "THE CORONATION OF THE MOTHER OF GOD". Mel Gibson used this resource also for his understandings. It states:

"....She assists forever at the right hand of her Son as Queen (Ps. 44, 10), Lady and Mistress of all creation, her dominion extending as far as that of her divine Son, although in a different manner.

After placing the most blessed Mary on this exalted and supereminent throne, the Lord declared to the courtiers of heaven all the privileges She should enjoy in virtue of this participation in his majesty.

...The incarnate Word said: "To my true and natural Mother belong all the creatures which were created and redeemed by Me; and of all things over which I am King, She too shall be the legitimate and supreme Queen." The Holy Ghost said: "Since She is called my beloved and chosen Spouse, She deserves to be crowned as Queen for all eternity."...the three divine Persons placed upon the head of the most blessed Mary a crown....

In the execution of this decree and privilege conceded to the Mistress of the world, the Almighty commanded all the courtiers of heaven, angels and men, to show Her obedience and recognize Her as their Queen and Lady. There was another mystery concealed in this wonder, namely, it was a recompense for the worship and veneration, which, as is clear from this history, the most blessed Mary, notwithstanding that She was the Mother of God, full of grace and holiness above the angels and saints, had bestowed upon the saints during her mortal pilgrimage.... 

yet now, when She was in possession of the kingdom, it was just, that She should be venerated, worshipped and extolled by them as her inferiors and vassals. This they also did in that most blessed state, in which all things are reduced to their proper proportion and order. Both the angelic spirits and the blessed souls, while rendering their adoration to the Lord with fear and worshipful reverence, rendered a like homage in its proportion to His most blessed Mother; and the saints who were there in their bodies prostrated themselves and gave bodily signs of their worship. All these demonstrations at the coronation of the Empress of heaven redounded wonderfully to her glory...."

http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Ithaca/7194/book8c8.html

The queen of heaven is mentioned in the Bible, in Jeremiah. 

Jeremiah 7:18  The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke me to anger. 19 Do they provoke me to anger? saith the LORD: do they not provoke themselves to the confusion of their own faces? [KJV] Jeremiah 44:17-25. 

We have one advocate before the Father, and that is Jesus Christ.

1 John 2:1 My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous: 2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. 
4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

Romans 8:34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. [KJV]

Mary herself recognized her need of salvation, and that salvation came from the Lord. That does not change that she was specially chosen by God for the purpose of bearing Christ, but she was affected by sin, like everyone else. She did not understand the things that He spoke, even when He was a twelve year old child.

Luke 1:46 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour. 48 For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.

Luke 2: 47 And all that heard him were astonished at his understanding and answers. 48 And when they saw him, they were amazed: and his mother said unto him, Son, why hast thou thus dealt with us? behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. 49 And he said unto them, How is it that ye sought me? wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? 50 And they understood not the saying which he spake unto them. 

On being asked by Peter Boyer, interviewing him for a New Yorker article, whether being a Protestant disqualified him [Boyer] from salvation, Gibson responded simply: “there is no salvation outside the Church.” He then went on to talk about his non-Catholic wife. “My wife is a saint. She’s a much better person than I am. She’s Episcopalian, Church of England. She prays, she believes in God, she knows Jesus, she believes in that stuff. And it’s just not fair if she doesn’t make it, she’s better than I am. But that [outside the Church there is no salvation] is a pronouncement from the Chair. I go with it." 6 

John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

1 Corinthians 3:11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. [KJV]

In the original article, A Different View of Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ", the Prayers of St. Bridget were mentioned, as were Gibson's beliefs about salvation, and the sources for his movie. 

In the Catholic Encyclopedia, speaking of the "Devotion to the Passion of Christ", the referencing of mystics as a source of truth, took hold around the thirteenth century and forward. Noting the three main mystic sources that we know Mel Gibson used for his Passion movie, which include, St. Bridget, Maria Agreda, and Anne Catherine Emmerich, we read:

"....the comparative frequency of the phenomenon seems to point to a new attitude of Catholic mysticism in regard to the Passion of Christ, which has only established itself since the beginning of the thirteenth century. The testimony of art points to a similar conclusion. It was only at about this same period that realistic and sometimes extravagantly contorted crucifixes met with any general favour...The people,... lagged far behind the mystics and the religious orders, but they followed in their wake....an inspection of the prayer-books...for the use of the laity,...shows the existence of an immense number of prayers either connected with incidents in the Passion or addressed to Jesus Christ upon the Cross. The best known... were the fifteen prayers attributed to St. Bridget, and described most commonly in English as "the Fifteen O's", from the exclamation with which each began...writers ...at the end of the sixteenth century, and... in the eighteenth, did much to illustrate the history of the Passion from historical sources, the general tendency of all devotional literature was to ignore such means of information as were provided by archæology and science, and to turn rather to the revelations of the mystics to supplement the Gospel records.... Amongst these, the Revelations of St. Bridget of Sweden, of Maria Agreda, of Marina de Escobar and, in comparatively recent times, of Anne Catherine Emmerich are the most famous. Within the last fifty years, however, there has been a reaction against this procedure, a reaction due probably to the fact that so many of these revelations plainly contradict each other...." 7

Mr. Gibson told the National Catholic Register, March 16-22, 2003, in an article titled, Three Nails, a Camera and a Cross: On the Set of Mel Gibson's The Passion, by Raymond Cleaveland, Register Correspondent, that: 

"...I have meditated a lot on the passion of Our Lord," he told the Register. "When I was 35, I started praying the Prayers of St. Bridget and they really helped me understand what the passion was all about. Now I want to share it with others"... [the reporter then stated] ....And this movie will be quite different from anything Gibson - or any director - has ever done before: It is a Catholic film, starring a Catholic actor, about the quintessential Catholic subject...."

Catholics who follow St. Bridget's fifteen prayers, are expected to pray them daily, with a total of 5480 prayers in the year, to honor the visions of Bridget concerning the Passion, and to equal the number of wounds He received. She wrote that Jesus had received that large number of wounds during His trial, scourging, and crucifixion, and that she was given this information directly by Jesus. These visions and prayers may account for the fact that in the movie, there is not even one small portion on the actors body that has not been traumatized as he is hanging on the cross.  

In order for Mel Gibson to have prayed those prayers according to the requirements, since he was 35, he would have had to have prayed them about 71, 240 times by the time he was 47, and releasing the movie, The Passion. Give or take a few misses.

In St. Bridget's third prayer, believed by many Catholics to have been given directly from Christ in a vision to her, she stated:

"...remember the very bitter pain Thou didst suffer when the Jews nailed Thy Sacred Hands and Feet to the Cross by blow after blow with big blunt nails, and not finding Thee in a pitiable enough state to satisfy their rage, they enlarged Thy Wounds, and added pain to pain, and with indescribable cruelty stretched Thy Body on the Cross, pulled Thee from all sides, thus dislocating Thy Limbs."

It should be noted that while the majority of prayer versions are as above, which is as it was written originally, this writer did find a few renditions of the third prayer that have been changed to say executioners instead of Jews.

Further excerpts of the fifteen prayers which are represented visually in the movie include:

Prayer Two "...thousands of insults, spits, blows, lacerations and other unheard-of-cruelties, tormented..."

Prayer Four "...remember the bruises which Thou didst suffer and the weakness of all Thy Members which were distended to such a degree that never was there pain like unto Thine. From the crown of Thy Head to the Soles of Thy Feet there was not one spot of Thy Body that was not in torment..."

Sixth Prayer "...Thou was fastened and raised on the Cross, when all Thy relatives and friends abandoned Thee, except Thy Beloved Mother, who remained close to Thee during Thy agony..."

Ninth Prayer "...recall the pain Thou didst endure when, plunged in an ocean of bitterness at the approach of death, insulted, outraged by the Jews..."

Tenth Prayer "...plunged in an abyss of suffering from the soles of Thy Feet to the crown of Thy Head. In consideration of the enormity of Thy Wounds..."

Twelfth Prayer"...Mirror of Truth, symbol of unity, link of Charity, remember the multitude of wounds with which Thou was covered from head to foot, torn and reddened by the spilling of Thy adorable Blood. O Great and Universal Pain..."

Fifteenth Prayer "...Remember the abundant outpouring of Blood which though didst so generously shed from Thy Sacred Body as juice from grapes in a wine press....blood and water issued forth until there was not left in Thy Body a single drop, and finally, like a bundle of myrrh lifted to the top of the Cross Thy delicate Flesh was destroyed, the very Substance of Thy Body withered, and the Marrow of Thy Bones dried up..."

The original Prayers of St. Bridget, viewed as serving as "The Way of the Cross," are described in many and various Catholic sites, and most often include 21 promises. The fifteen prayers are declared to have been given to Bridget of Sweden by Jesus. The promises are also declared to have been given her by Jesus, for all those that say the prayers faithfully for one year. The Prayers of St. Bridget appear popular and the saint herself, is considered to be one of the favorite of saints among Catholics, both Traditional and other. The Catholic encyclopedia states that Bridget is, "The most celebrated saint of the Northern kingdoms, born about 1303; died 23 July, 1373." 9  

According to Catholic sources, visitors to the Church of St. Paul at Rome can, "see the crucifix, above the Tabernacle in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, sculptured by Pierre Cavallini, before which St. Bridget knelt when she received these 15 prayers from Our Lord. The following inscription is placed in the church to commemorate the event: "Pendentis, Pendente Dei verba accepit aure accipit et verbum corde Brigitta Deum. Anno Jubilei MCCCL."

According to the legend, Bridget had wanted to know the number of blows Christ received during His Passion and He one day appeared to her and said, "I received 5,480 blows on My body. If you wish to honour them in some way, say 15 Our Fathers and 15 Hail Marys with the following prayers (which He taught her) for a whole year. When the year is up, you will have honoured each one of My wounds."

For those unfamiliar, one Catholic site stated: [caps in the original]

"REMEMBER THE SONG "AVE MARIS STELLA" given to SAINT BRIDGET by the Blessed Virgin Mary? This is the same SAINT BRIDGET of Sweden that JESUS gave a SET OF 15 PRAYERS especially important in the Last Days, FOR THE SALVATION OF SOULS of your Family and Relatives. With so few places having a valid Mass available for the FAITHFUL, these 15 PRAYERS, after the ROSARY and BROWN SCAPULAR are another very important part of our SECOND LINE OF DEFENSE.  "

...TIPS ON PRAYER > Your prayers are strongest at the Consecration in the Holy Mass (raising of HOST and Chalice). Each time we look at The Most Blessed Sacrament our place in Heaven is raised forever. (revealed by Our Lord to Saint Gertrude the Great).

...PRAYER TO OBTAIN THE GRACE OF ALL THE WORLD'S MASSES ...May the Most Precious Blood of Christ, ALL His Blood and Wounds and Agony save us, through the sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary. Amen!  Dear Saint Philomena pray for us for the purity of mind and heart which lead to the Perfect Love of God! God Must be pursued and the more you chase Him the more you catch Him. (Maimonedes) (this prayer should be prayed daily, and MADE KNOWN.)"  10

The site also goes on to say that while reciting the prayers, that the person should offer,  "'THE BODY AND BLOOD, SOUL AND DIVINITY" of Christ.

...THE CHAPLET OF DIVINE MERCY to be prayed on the Rosary Beads First of all you will pray, ONE OUR FATHER, then ONE HAIL MARY, and ONE APOSTLES' CREED. Then on the OUR FATHER BEADS say these words: "ETERNAL FATHER, I OFFER THEE THE BODY AND BLOOD, SOUL AND DIVINITY, OF YOUR DEARLY BELOVED SON, OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, IN ATONEMENT FOR OUR SINS, AND THOSE OF THE WHOLE WORLD."  [caps in the original] 11

Note: from one Catholic writing, posted with "Ecclesiastical approval" and regarding The Brown Scapular, mentioned above:

The Brown Scapular by Rt. Rev. Charles A. Klauder.
Copyright 1991 Marians of the Immaculate Conception.

"Almost everyone knows of our Blessed Mother's apparition at Fatima in 1917, and almost every Catholic knows some of the requests she made for all of us to put into practice in our daily lives...

"...2. Wearing of the Brown Scapular, the Sign of Consecration to Mary's Immaculate Heart"

"...the wearing of the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel - such a simple request made by the Holy Mother of God for us to wear a tiny piece of brown cloth as an act and proof of devotion to her....at Fatima in 1917, our Blessed Lady appeared to Lucy and the other two children, Francesco and Jacinta. She was clothed in the Brown Garb of Carmel. Holding in her hand the Brown Scapular, she reminded us all to wear it and enjoy her extraordinary Promise:  "Whosoever dies wearing this Scapular shall not suffer eternal fire."

"....The Scapular is Mary's Mantle, thrown over our shoulders with a promise of eternal salvation and an indulgence for all who kiss it with devotion. After the Rosary, the Scapular is the most highly indulgenced sacramental in the Church....Such a simple thing to do - such a wonderful reward - the wearing of a tiny piece of cloth. The Blessed Mother's Promise of Eternal Salvation"

The twenty-one promises are declared to be rewarded to those who faithfully pray the fifteen prayers of St. Bridget, " ....as long as one recites the 5,480 prayers during the year. One must say them with devotion and concentrate on the words one pronounces."

One website, called the Miracle of the Rosary Mission, stated this concerning Bridget and the fifteen prayers: 12

A woman who changed the world
A saint for our time

BRIDE OF CHRIST

"Bridget, I am speaking not only to you but to all Christians. You will be My bride...and it shall be through you that I will speak to the world. My spirit will dwell in you until your death."

The Fifteen Prayers revealed by Our Lord to Saint Bridget of Sweden in the Church of St. Paul at Rome

Are published under sanction of the Decree of November 18, 1966, published in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, Vol. 58, No.16 of December 29, 1966. 

Prayers
approved by Pope Pius IX

Confirmed with various sources, the following information appears to be common knowledge concerning the Prayers of St. Bridget.

The Fifteen Prayers revealed by Our Lord to St. Bridget of Sweden in the church of St. Paul at Rome are published under sanction of the Decree of November 18, 1966, published in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, Vol. 58, No. 16 of December 29, 1966.

Approved by Pope Pius IX

Pope Benedict XV expressed himself as follows on the Revelations of St. Bridget:

"The approbations of such revelations implies nothing more than, after mature examination, it is permissible to publish them for the unit of the faithful. Though they don't merit the same credence as the truths of religion, one can, however, believe them out of human faith, conforming to the rules of prudence by which they are probably, and supported by sufficient motives that one might believe in them piously." (Les Petits Bollandistes, tome XII)

....These prayers and these promises have been copied from a book printed in Toulouse in 1740 and published by the P. Adrien Parvilliers of the Company of Jesus, Apostolic Missionary of the Holy Land, with approbation, permission, and recommendation to distribute them.
...Pope Pius IX took cognizance of these prayers with the prologue; he approved them May 31, 1862, recognizing them as true and for the good of souls.

....This sentence of Pope Pius IX has been confirmed by the realization of the promises by all persons who have recited the prayers and by numerous supernatural facts by which God wanted to make known their exact truth. A collection of small books, these prayers among them, was approved by the Great Congress of Malines on August 22, 1863." 13

A Roman Catholic webring, contained this information:

How to avoid Purgatory, Saint Bridget of Sweden >http://x.webring.com/hub?ring=catholic&id=836&go
How to avoid Purgatory (The Fifteen Prayers revealed by Our Lord to Saint Bridget of Sweden in the Church of St. Paul at Rome) Are published under sanction of the Decree of November 18, 1966, published in the Acta Apostolicae Sedis, Vol. 58, No. 16 of December 29, 1966. "
14

That link was to another clearly Roman Catholic site, a requirement of being part of the ring, and holding the same information about the 1966 publishing of the Fifteen Prayers of St. Bridget. 

In other words. St. Bridget is as well known to Vatican 2 Roman Catholics as she is to Traditional Catholics like Mel Gibson. And The Fifteen Prayers of St. Bridget appear to be very common amongst all Catholics.

According to Catholic sources, many of that mystic's revelations were given directly by Christ or 'the Virgin Mary.' Bridget or St Birgitta of Sweden is said to have heard Christ and the Virgin reveal the will of God to her. Bridget is also said to have compiled her revelations into a book, which was later translated into Latin and into "vernacular languages", and studied by Catholics. 

According to various writers, the 'Virgin Mary' was Bridget's ideal and viewed as "the untouched", pure person. One writer stated, that in the fourteenth century the Virgin Mary was very popular at large and a cult was forming around her in Europe. Bridget's writings and visions focused on Mater misercordiae, or the Mary's painful motherly love, and the wrath of God.  The ideas of the crucifixion, which Mel Gibson would likely have been aware of, aside from praying the fifteen prayers over 70,000 times, which words make the Jews culpable, include the following. 

"The Vision Lady Birgitta saw in Jerusalem in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in the chapel of Mount Calvary, on the Friday after the octave of the Ascension of the Lord, when, caught up in spirit, she saw the whole passion of the Lord in painstaking detail.

"... He ascended gladly like a meek lamb led to the slaughter (and) extended his arms and opened his right hand and placed it on the cross. Those savage torturers monstrously crucified it, piercing it with a nail through that part where the bone was more solid. And then with a rope, they pulled violently on his left hand and fastened it to the cross in the same manner. Finally they extended his body on the cross beyond all measure; and placing one of his shins on top of the other the fastened to the cross his feet, thus joined, with two nails... Then the crown of thorns, which they had removed from his head when he was being crucified they now put back, fitting it onto his most holy head. It pierced his awesome head with such force that then and there his eyes were filled with flowing blood and his ears were obstructed..." 15

The statement, "piercing it with a nail through that part where the bone was more solid." suggests that the bone would have shattered in the hand. That would go against the Scriptures that not one bone in His body was broken.

 

Saint Bridget...The Tie That Binds

 

2 Corinthians 6: 15-17

15 And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that believeth with an infidel? 16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you.
[KJV]

The Pope "Proclaimed Three New Patrons of Europe," according to a press release from Vatican City, October 1, 1999. John Paul II made the announcement during the Mass for the opening of the special assembly of the Synod of Bishops for Europe. He stated:

"...Beginning 1 October 1999, Europe not only has male patron saints, but also three holy women: Edith Stein, Catherine of Sienna, and Bridget of Sweden. The Pope said he is making this proclamation "to emphasize the important role that women have had and have in the ecclesial and civil history of the continent down to our days." These holy women are examples and intercessors..."

The Pontiff chose them because they are "connected in a special way with the Continent's history". Edith Stein, a Jewish philosopher who converted to Catholicism and died in Auschwitz, "is a symbol of the dramas in Europe in our time." Bridget of Sweden and Catherine of Sienna worked tirelessly for the Church in the 14th century.

Bridget, founder of a religious Congregation... "traveled through Europe from north to south, working tirelessly for the unity of Christians," the Pope said. She died in Rome....

"European Christians and ecclesial communities of all confessions, as well as European citizens and Nations, genuinely committed to the quest for truth and the common good," will be able to be inspired in this third millennium that will soon begin, with the example of these three women who "admirably express the synthesis between contemplation and action...." 16

Pope John Paul II gave a Homily, November 13, 1999,  including the following about Bridget, and the role in the ecumenical movement:

"....Today we remember this extraordinary holy woman, ... beside me in this celebration there are the highest representatives of the Lutheran Churches of Sweden and Finland, together with my venerable Brother Bishops of Stockholm and Copenhagen. ...the King and Queen of Sweden... My greeting goes... to the political leaders here with us. ....gathered to renew... the commitment to unity of faith and unity of the Church which Saint Bridget undertook with such conviction... A passion for Christian unity sustained her entire life...Today’s celebration encourages us to meditate upon the message of Saint Bridget, whom I recently chose to proclaim a Co-Patroness of Europe ... Saint Bridget’s ... witness to the Cross are a rallying-point for us...I am very pleased ... to inaugurate and bless a statue which will make more vibrant here in the Vatican the memory of this great witness of faith. Placed on the outside of this Basilica and just beside the so-called “Door of Prayer”, the marble image of Saint Bridget will be an enduring invitation to pray and work always for Christian unity." 17 

The Pope, along with Princess Victoria of Sweden, unveiled the five metre high statue of St. Birgitta in the Vatican. 

The Pope, in his Homily, went on to remind his listeners of October 5, 1991, when, "a solemn ecumenical celebration was held in this same basilica for the sixth centenary of St Bridget's canonization. On that occasion I said: "For 25 years Lutherans and Catholics have been working to rediscover their common path...."

He then went on to say:

"....Everyone knows that the Protestant Reformation began from the doctrine of justification and that it destroyed the unity of the Christians of the West. A common understanding of justification ... will... help us to resolve the other controversies directly or indirectly linked to it"....This "common understanding" ... has become an encouraging reality. On 31 October last, in the city of Augsburg, a Joint Declaration was solemnly signed in which Lutherans and Catholics expressed a consensus on basic truths of the doctrine of justification. This achievement of the ecumenical dialogue, a milestone on the way to full and visible unity, is the result of an intense work of research, meetings and prayer.

"....The Joint Declaration says ... that the consensus reached by Catholics and Lutherans "in basic truths of the doctrine of justification must come to influence the life and teachings of our Churches" (n. 43).

"...May Saint Bridget be our example and intercessor. In a special way I ask you, her dear spiritual daughters of the Order of the Most Holy Saviour, to continue faithfully your precious apostolate of service to unity..." 18

In keeping with that ecumenical influence, historically, Brigitta or Bridget, was said to have heavily influenced Queen Margareta, the founder of the Kalmar Union (1397-1532), which was an alliance of the kingdoms of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden against the power of Germany. 19 

In 2003, the 700th anniversary of the birth of St. Birgitta celebration was primarily held in Vadstena, Stockholm. It was called 'The Jubilee of Saint Birgitta 2003'. A Jubilee Committee was in place with prominent representatives of the Church of Sweden (Lutheran), the Roman Catholic diocese of Stockholm, and various local authorities, with ambassador Lars Bergquist as chairman. The official end of the Birgitta year occurred October 7, 2003, which is stated as being Birgitta day.

The website specifically set up for the celebrations noted that one event included a "solemn church service and celebration", which took place on Sunday, June 1, 2003. Their Majesties the King of Sweden Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia attended as well as "H.H. the Pope" and other heads of state. 20

A large exhibition about St. Birgitta, her Revelations and her Order was  shown in Vadstena during the jubilee year, and another held in Stockholm. The most important project was the translation to English of the Birgittine Revelations, which were to be published during the Jubilee year. 21

According to the website, an international ensemble was said to have presented a play at theatres in the towns along the road taken in 1374 by the procession carrying Birgitta’s earthly remains from Rome through Europe, over Gdansk to the Swedish Söderköping with Vadstena as the final goal.

Their celebration included plans to "build a museum, which illuminates Birgitta and her religious and political contribution to European culture, and at the same time visualize other medieval monasteries in the Östergötland province - Dominicans, Benedictines, Franciscans and other orders. Thus, the visitors will get an idea of the importance of the monasteries as centres for furthering the cultural contacts between Europe and Sweden, and vice versa." 22

St. Bridget, then, is embraced in Europe and we presume worldwide, as an icon for the ecumenical movement. Her revelations are viewed as wholesome and worthy to reunite peoples and nations. Catholicism is strong in Europe and worldwide, and anti-semitism, as well as anti-Christianity is very much on the rise. Statistics from 1997, stated, that there were just over a billion Catholics in the world.

It will be most interesting to see what impact those beliefs have when mixed with Mel Gibson's Catholic centered, and violently graphic movie, for those many who devoutly and daily pray, that the "Jews did it" to Christ. This writer would sincerely hope that they don't really believe "the Jews" killed Jesus, particularly as described in the prayers, or even as depicted in the movie. They did not.

These concerns are also raised because the Pope of the Roman Catholic church has said of the movie, "It is as it was." That alongside the many Protestant leadership who have proclaimed it as Biblically and historically accurate and urging their followers to see this movie and see and feel "what Jesus went through." See: Comments About Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ"  And people are saying that the movie is the Truth, it is really Jesus and shows how much he REALLY suffered. That is in spite of the fact that the movie is Biblically and historically false.

We serve a risen Savior. He sits at the right hand of the Father. He is not on a movie screen. That is not Him. Nor is it truth. The movie is a falsified account of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and presents images that are being remembered by viewers as 'the real Jesus.' Those that embrace it as truth and embrace it as "the way it was", embrace a false gospel and another Jesus. 

Jesus Christ is with every Believer in the person of the Holy Spirit and He has revealed Himself to each Believer by the Holy Spirit through the Word of God, contained in the Bible. We are called to heed His warnings and refuse to go to see or accept, any other “christ”.  

Matthew 24:23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall show great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
25 Behold, I have told you before.
26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.
27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
28 For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.
[KJV]

In the article Comments About Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ", movie critic, Austin O'Connor of the LOWELL SUN had stated, "...there will inevitably be a divide among people who see it....unbendingly bloody vision will also prove divisive."

However correct Austin Connor has proven to be, the film is definitely causing division, as shown in the article, Pro & Con Comments About Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ". At this point, so far it appears that the division is happening more between 'christians' and those falling under that banner, than with Jewish people and the anti-semitism factor. The Bridget issue is, in fact, while seemingly anti-semitic and un Biblical, within the Fifteen Prayers, 'she' is clearly being propelled forward as one of the ties that binds within the ecumenical movement. And for all of that we have serious concerns. 

Jesus said in Matthew 10: 

34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. 35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.
[KJV]

 

Next Article:

God Can Use Anything...But Should We? Q & A About The Passion of The Christ

Previous Article:

Pro & Con Comments About Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ"

Other Articles: 

A Different View of Mel Gibson's  The Passion of The Christ >

[also available split into 2 parts > gibson1, gibson2]

Comments About Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ"

Pro & Con Comments About Mel Gibson's "The Passion of The Christ"             

Mel Gibson, Biblical Accuracy & The Other Passion Source: The 15 Prayers of St. Bridget

God Can Use Anything...But Should We? Q & A About The Passion of The Christ

Q & A: More Scriptural Comparison's of The Passion of the Christ

Q & A: About the Cast & Crew of Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ

NewsFlash!  Mystic Anne Emmerich to be Beatified

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment & Zondervan To Distribute 

DVD/VHS of Mel Gibson's The Passion of The Christ

 

Footnotes

1 Hutton Gibson Interview Partial Transcript ; I. The Holocaust,  www.speakyourpiece.net

2. WIESENTHAL CENTER CONDEMNS HUTTON GIBSON'S STATEMENTS DENYING THE HOLOCAUST; http://www.wiesenthal.com/social/press/pr_item.cfm?ItemID=8950

3. A Reader's Digest Exclusive Interview With Mel Gibson; March Issue to Feature Exclusive Print Interview Regarding The Controversial New Film - 'The Passion of the Christ' PLEASANTVILLE, N.Y., Feb. 14 /PRNewswire/; Exclusive outtakes from the original transcript -- not featured in magazine interview:

4. ABCNEWS' Primetime, on Monday, February 16, 2004, February 18, 2004

5 Email , used with permission

6. http://www.unomaha.edu/~wwwjrf/2004Symposium/Lawler.htm

7. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11527b.htm

8. http://www.ncregister.com/Register_News/030903gibson.htm  

9. http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/02782a.htm

10. http://ourworld-top.cs.com/mrosale/id31.htm

11. http://ourworld-top.cs.com/mrosale/id31.htm

12. http://www.miraclerosarymission.org/bridget.html

13. http://www.holysouls.info/stbridget.php ; http://www.ewtn.com/library/PRAYER/BRIDPRAY.TXT ;
http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Marble/8229/english.htm
http://ourworld-top.cs.com/mrosale/id31.htm

14 http://x.webring.com/hub?ring=catholic

15. http://www.holycross.edu/departments/visarts/projects/kempe/related/stbridg.htm

16. http://www.catholic-forum.com/saints/day1001.htm

17. http://www.catholic-forum.com/saints/pope0264wq.htm

18. Ibid

19. http://www.helsinki-hs.net/news.asp?id=20030311IE14

20. http://www.birgittastiftelsen.se/birgitta2003/english/index2.htm

21 http://www.birgittastiftelsen.se/birgitta2003/english/letter.html

http://www.birgittastiftelsen.se/birgitta2003/english/letter4.html

22  http://www.birgittastiftelsen.se/birgitta2003/english/letter2.html

http://www.birgittastiftelsen.se/english/index3.htm       home page > then on the left there is a link  to here  http://www.sanctabirgitta.com/

 

Copyright . All articles are the sole property of SeekGod.ca and Vicky Dillen. All Scripture King James Version unless otherwise stated.

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