The Green Scapular and Its Favors
by REV. FATHER MARIE EDOUARD MOTT, C.M.
PART THREE: The Favors Associated with the Green Scapular
The wonders attributed to the Green Scapular are truly countless. Almost constantly we are informed of conversions of infidels or sinners who, first rebellious, declared themselves vanquished as soon as the Green Scapular was used. Thus are realized the words spoken by the Blessed Virgin to Sister Bisqueyburu in 1846:
"Yes, if it be given with confidence, there will be a great number of conversions." Cures obtained by the same means are not so numerous, though there have been some.
It is absolutely impossible here to mention all these favors. We shall confine ourselves to relating just a few. They will suffice to justify the promises of the Blessed Virgin, and to inspire confidence in the use of this new pledge of salvation which we owe to her maternal kindness.
This is very likely the first or one of the first attributed to the Green Scapular, for it took place September 30, 1842, and the first Scapulars were made in 1841.
This wonderful conversion may be considered as a reward not only for the zeal which Mr. Letaille displayed in bringing about the conversion of his bookkeeper to the practice of religion, but also for the religious eagerness he showed in attending to the engraving of the plate used in printing the Scapular.
The relation that follows is most authentic, based on the testimony written by persons who were in closest touch with the event: the convert himself, Mr. Copin, then Mr. Letaille, Father Aladel, and Sister Grand. It is from these testimonies, carefully preserved in the Archives of the Congregation of the Mission, that the following details are drawn.
. . . . . . .
Mr. Copin, who was born about the year 1792 amid the disturbances of the Great Revolution, had not received a Christian education. Having had no religious instruction, he knew the Church, her doctrine, her ceremonies and her ministers only through her detractors.
He had at first entered upon a military career and served in the army of Napoleon I, taking part in several campaigns. He had reached the rank of under officer when, in a battle against the English, he was wounded and taken prisoner.
Returning to France and retiring from the army, he availed himself of his knowledge of bookkeeping and we thus find him in 1840 about fifty years of age, as bookkeeper in the house of Letaille (formerly conducted by Pintard, 30 rue St. Jacques). "He acquitted himself of his duty," said Mr. Letaille, "with a perfect regularity and steadfastness up to his death. Being of a cold temperament, firm, perhaps somewhat headstrong, he had a tender heart capable of devotedness."
He married one of the employees of the house-----much younger than himself-----and was very good to her and practiced in his home all domestic virtues. Nothing was wanting to make of him a perfect man but to add to these natural virtues faith and the practice of religion.
At that time (1840) Mr. Charles Letaille, who had himself returned to God after two years of hesitation and prayer, felt in the fervor of a neophyte the need of imparting to others the faith he had regained and which he had attributed to Our Lady of Victory.
To satisfy this apostolic inclination, he undertook the conversion of his bookkeeper, Mr. Copin, whom he held in great esteem and whose religious doubts and prejudices he had previously shared. Let us hear from him the story of the efforts of his zeal:
"When we became acquainted, we both were skeptical philosophers, discussing everything, doubting everything, but more through ignorance and presumption than prejudice.
"As soon as I had embraced the practice of religious duties, I felt the need of special studies in order to explain my conduct and to be able to answer as a Christian to the attacks directed against me on all sides. To this effect I implored the help of the Most Holy Virgin.
"I consecrated myself to her promising her that if she would guide me in all things, I would no longer concern myself about anything but to serve her Divine Son under her banner.
"Mr. Copin became the companion of my religious studies and for two years (1840-1842) we interrupted our monotonous secretarial work only to discuss points of dogma or ethics.
"With God's help, I soon became better example, it took me a considerable time to convince him on a point which seemed to me at first insurmountable; he could not see how all the animals could have fitted in Noah's ark . . . !
"Recognizing that the efforts of my zeal were powerless and almost fruitless, and penetrated with the sentiments of my great weakness, I betook myself to prayer and entreated our Lady of Victory to come to my help. I also recommended the conversion of this good soul to the interests of the priests and religious person whom the great mercy of God had made use of to save my own self."
Among those persons were Father Desgenettes, the saintly pastor of Our Lady of Victory and founder of the famous Archconfraternity which bears that name; a Jesuit Father who is not named; two Daughters of Charity of the Mother House, Sister Henriette and Sister Grand, on duty in the secretariate, lastly Father Aladel, Director of the Community of the Daughters of Charity, and confidant of the revelations of the Blessed Virgin to Sister Bisqueyburu concerning the Green Scapular.
It was thus God was pleased to surround this predestined soul, who was soon to appear before His tribunal, with all that could help him to secure a favorable judgment.
That moment, in fact, was not far removed. "Meanwhile," related Mr. Letaille, "the worthy Mr. Copin fell sick. At first it was only a sore throat, a hacking cough which seemed not very alarming. However, the case was most serious. Mr. Copin, whose body was worn out by the privations and fatigues of his military campaigns, was by these facts predisposed to disease. His lungs became ulcerated and his condition grew critical.
"Although he was well aware of it, he did not seem disturbed in the least. For him it was a conflict to sustain with disease and he loved warfare, hoping to triumph by dint of energy. His energy, let it be said, was more than ordinary, and he gave many proofs of it during his illness. One day as he himself had applied a searing iron to his arm, he placed a silver coin on it and pressed on it so hard that it was all bent. And in the last stages, when his illness confined him to bed, he succeeded in overcoming his extreme weakness to attend to his bookkeeping which he kept up until his death."
Yet his state of soul inspired him with no anxiety regarding eternity. Fortunately, others thought of it in his place, and Mr. Letaille's zeal for his friend increased in proportion to the imminent danger.
"In this extremity," he said, "I had recourse to some means which I deemed to be decisive. I obtained the consent of the venerable Father Desgenettes, my Director, to pay my patient a visit. He came to see him several times, and each time had a long talk with him, but alas! without any success. The poor sick man said that he would be very glad to know the truth, but that he felt himself surrounded by darkness which prevented him from seeing the truth. As he was gifted with an upright and sincere soul, he did not wish to perform an action contrary to his convictions.
"As I was exasperated at seeing the disease progressing each day and the longed-for conversion proceeding so slowly, I tried to put my poor friend in touch with the good Sisters of Charity whom he loved and revered. "
There were in particular two Sisters of the Mother House, Sister Henrietta and Sister Grand, who very efficaciously helped Mr. Letaille in his zealous efforts to bring about the conversion of the dear patient. Sister Grand took charge of pleading his cause with the Very Reverend Father Aladel, whom she induced to visit the patient.
"I saw Father Aladel this morning," she wrote to Mr. Letaille, on Saturday, September 17, "and he consents to see the patient, not thinking, however that he will be able to hear his Confession. Nevertheless, I look upon this visit as a great blessing; I induced him to pay it tomorrow, Sunday, after Vespers, that is about four or five o'clock.
"I think, it would be well if the patient were prepared for the visit. You might tell him that I am so grateful for the prayers he kindly said for my brother, that I should at any cost obtain this same happiness for him; that I beg him to give a kind reception to this venerable priest, to open to him his heart entirely and to tell him why he does not seriously begin to make his Confession . . . etc. Tell him that this good priest, who is under rules, did not hesitate to inconvenience himself to make this call for the sake of the glory God might derive from it
. . . etc. . . .
"Consider whether it is better for Father Aladel to meet at your house or at his and then come and tell me tomorrow, Sunday, before our High Mass, which is at eight o'clock.
"I dare hope that the Blessed Virgin will bless this visit. Please offer tomorrow's Communion for that intention. This soul must, must be saved, our Lord wishes it-----the Blessed Virgin wishes it." It can be seen what a heart of an Apostle this good Daughter of Charity possessed!
The visit took place on Sunday, September 18; but it had not the expected result. "The worthy Father Aladel," said Mr. Letaille, "was received as the other priest who had previously called, with a courtesy deeply respectful, but his endeavors to persuade the patient to take the step that cost him so much, remained fruitless. Dear Mr. Copin was moved to tears at these marks of interest, and his grief was, so he said, not to be able in conscience to admit what was proposed to him with so much zeal."
"It was then that the idea occurred to have recourse to the Green Scapular. Monday, September 19, 1842. Sister Grand sent one to Mr. Letaille asking him to induce the patient to accept it, at least as a means to restore him back to bodily health. "Try," said she, "and if needs be, be insistent. Bring the heart of, Mary (whose image is on the scapular) near that unhappy heart, so that her power may break its lock, and that grace may, as soon as possible, penetrate into that soul. All our Sisters are going to join in prayer for him."
Mr. Copin accepted the scapular to please his friend, and even wore it on his person, but without attaching much importance to it.
However, the disease made rapid strides and Father Desgenettes advised Mr. Letaille to enlighten the patient upon the seriousness of his state and to tell him that his end was near.
"I was the only Christian friend," said Mr. Letaille, "who could venture for his salvation such an announcement and it cost me beyond words. I appealed to the Blessed Virgin for light and grace. I prayed myself weary and then went out to my patient.
"The conversation soon fell upon Heaven. It was our usual subject. And I told him gently, without effort, that the time had come for him to think of it . . ., that the end of his mortal career was near at hand . . .
"Overwhelmed by this news he sat on his bed, took my hands and after a few moments of silence he said to me: 'How different do the things of this world look when one is standing on the brink of eternity . . .' These words gave me some hope, and our conversation continued in its affectionate turn. But soon I understood that unless a miracle would happen, my poor friend would not ask for the priest, that he would content himself with using all his energy in order to die without weakness, like a disciple of Socrates. I was distressed."
"The moment however was not far distant when this distress was to be changed into great joy; the Immaculate Heart of Mary was soon to work a great favor. The patient spent the greater part of his time in bed; but he rose each day, worked at his bookkeeping and even ate at the table with his family.
On Friday morning, September 30, Mr. Letaille called to see him, but the conversation was very superficial and religion was not even mentioned. The little success of the preceding day lent no encouragement to a fresh attempt.
Now, in the evening of that very Friday, about seven o'clock, Mr. Copin was at table with his family, when all of a sudden, he rose abruptly, left the table and retired in his bedroom. There he fell on his knees before an image of the Blessed Virgin and took his Green Scapular in his hands as a "medium" as he expressed himself; he kissed it respectfully, and shed abundant tears. Then he felt impelled to promise the Blessed Virgin that within the week he would seriously settle the affair of his conscience.
Rising, he went back to his family, but soon he retired again, went on his knees in a recess near his bed, weeping and praying, and finished by promising our Blessed Mother not to wait a week but to attend to it the very next day.
Immediately he wrote the following note to Mr. Letaille: "Most dear friend: I have to speak to you about many things; and if you could give me a few hours tomorrow afternoon, I would consider it a great favor. I made a promise to our good Mother, I prayed hard to her yesterday and am most anxious to see you about it. Good-bye, pray for me, I need it so much! It is in your house I should like to see you; here my emotion would be too great.
What a sudden and truly miraculous change! That man, usually so cold, so matter of fact, so far from any religious practice, now weeps, prays, promises Mary not to puff his reconciliation, with God, and writes to his friend to declare himself vanquished!
On receiving this note, Saturday morning, October 1, Mr. Letaille could not control his joy; he sent the note immediately to Sister Grand, adding to it the following lines. "Dear Sister: This morning on returning from Mass, I received a very consoling letter from our poor dear patient. Our good Immaculate Mother came to his help. I am sending it to you that you may see for yourself. How edified I am by his humility and confidence! 'I made a promise to our good Mother . . .' This is the first time, as far as I can remember, that he made use of this appellation in speaking of the Blessed Virgin. I do not know as yet what this promise is . . . I went right away to see our dear pastor (of Saint-Severin's) Father Hanicle and gave him a general account of this sad story, showing him the enclosed note. He will come at half-past three. Perhaps Mr. Copin will still be there. We place everything in the hands of our good Immaculate Mother. It makes me happy to see that it happens on a Saturday and the eve of the Feast of the Holy Angels, to whom I am going to begin a novena for him tomorrow. I wrote to Father Desgenettes in order to recommend him to the special prayers of the Archconfraternity; and with the help of our good Mother I shall go tomorrow evening to pray at the shrine of her Immaculate Heart. I know that it is needless to ask you to think of us from noon until four o'clock, as I know full well the extent of your charity for him and for us. Help us, Sister, we beg you so much. Will you kindly tell this to Father Aladel and keep the note for me?"
That very day, in fact, Mr. Copin, bracing himself up against his weakness, was able to call on Mr. Letaille to tell him about his sudden conversion and the promise he made to the Blessed Virgin. The two friends fell into each other's arms. "The time of discussion was over," said Mr. Letaille, "we agreed in humbling ourselves and thanking God." And the pastor of Saint-Severin who arrived could begin hearing the Confession of the happy convert; of which event Mr. Letaille hastened to inform good Sister Grand: "My dear Sister," said he, "our good Mother has triumphed! Alleluia! The poor sick man just went to Confession to Father Hanicle, from four until five o'clock. It was the Green Scapular that conquered him."
And Sister Grand answered October 2: "How good Mary is! How powerful! How liberal! How merciful! . . . How we thank you for telling us the good news! we are so interested in it! Tell the happy patient so, while awaiting the time when we may call on him ourselves, October 4, to rejoice with him and express our happiness . . . The demon is overcome! But what a triumph! and what a feast must be held in the heavenly home! All the Angels are celebrating this longed-for return. All sing 'Glory to God, love to the Divine Mother.' And we too, let us not weary returning thanks, especially by greater fidelity and fervor."
"On the same day she also imparted her joy to Father Aladel: "Father, how happy I am at this new triumph of our powerful Mother! The poor patient is to continue his Confession tomorrow (Monday evening, October 3) Sister Henriette and I will go to see him on Tuesday (October 4), and I dare hope that you will have the charity to go there also on one of these days. . . . These are good beginnings to recommend the new Scapular . . . ! This first trial is well calculated to encourage us . . . how evident it is that Heaven is blessing it and how true has the revelation proved itself to be . . . As a consequence I do love that Green Scapular. But especially do I love Mary, our good Mother, who is giving us this new pledge of her inexhaustible love. Yes, indeed! in Heaven there must be a great feast at the conversion of a sinner. I can well feel this by the almost excessive joy which I experience."
"On the Tuesday following, October 4, the patient received the visit of Sister Grand and the day after, on Wednesday the 5th, that of Father Aladel, who joyfully convinced himself of the reality of this surprising and sudden conversion.
However Mr. Copin had not yet ended his Confession which had already required two interviews. It was only on Monday, October 17, that he received absolution and on the next day, Tuesday the 18th, feast of St. Luke, he made at the Church of Saint-Severin his first and last Communion. Here is an account of it by Mr. Letaille, given to Sister Grand the very day of this happy Communion:
"My dear Sister, I am sending you this note to ask you to help us to thank our Immaculate Mother, for the protection she never ceases to show us.
"Everything went well. Our dear patient has been somewhat tried but I do hope that with the help of God this will make him much the stronger.
"Yesterday, Monday, Father Hanicle (the Pastor of Saint-Severin's) as he intended to come to hear his Confession, had to go to the ministry and returned only at nine p.m. Our poor sick man waited for him patiently, went to Confession at nine o'clock and then returned home.
"The next day, that is to say, this morning, he had to undergo a fast that was extremely difficult for him, considering his condition. He had to abstain from every drink, lozenge, etc., from midnight until after eight o'clock.
"This morning, exactly at eight o'clock, he came with his wife to Saint-Severin's and I arrived with my mother. He was very weak; but you know how brave he is. As it was somewhat cold we took him to the sacristy to warm himself, while waiting for the priest, who was not long coming. He had a few scruples of conscience which he wanted to submit to Father but they could not have been much for it did not look as if Father gave him absolution.
"After that we went to the altar of Our Lady of Holy Hope. We followed him, the four of us-----he, his wife, my mother and I-----united in one same thought, in one same sentiment.
"To spare him every subject of confusion, I told him to do everything he would see me do, and you may believe I kept him sitting as much as possible.
"At last the moment of Communion arrived, and under the protection of our good Immaculate Mother he received our dear Master! Praised and adored be at all times the Most Holy Sacrament of love, and blessed be forever the purity and Immaculate Conception of our good Mother! Amen! Oh! my dear Sister, how good God is . . . ! And our Blessed Mother, too!
"After the last Gospel, I sat with him to help him make his thanksgiving; when our dear Lord Who just now had reassumed His rights over our poor hearts, willed by a magnanimous gesture to take us all together to Himself. How welcome to me was the thought with which he then inspired Father; for as I am thinking it over, it seems to me as if our Lord wished thus to bind us to Him before everybody. This is how it happened.
"At the end of the Mass, before leaving the altar, Father stopped, recollected his thoughts for a moment, then turning around, he said aloud: 'My brethren, I spoke to you of an elderly gentleman whose conversion we
obtained, together with that of his wife, by our prayers to Our Lady of Hope. I had asked you to pray in order to draw down the graces of heaven on his First Communion which. he had not as yet had the happiness of making. He made it at this Mass, under the protection of St. Luke who, as you know was a physician; this is a good omen. We asked and obtained by our prayers the cure of his soul. Let us now ask of Our Lady of Hope, Refuge of the hopeless, the cure of his body, under the patronage of St. Luke. Let us for that intention say a Pater and an Ave.'
"After that, Father knelt down and we answered the prayers which he said aloud . . . ! O! how I wished you had been there! You would have been so happy . . . !"
What were the sentiments of the happy convert at the moment when our Lord, coming to him in Holy Communion, took possession of his soul? We learn it by a letter of Sister Grand to Father Aladel, dated Saturday, October 22:
"Last Thursday I went to see that poor patient, to congratulate him for the great grace of his First Communion. What a sweet impression I carried away from this visit! If it were possible that I could doubt the infinite goodness of God, I confess that I would there have found incontestable proofs of it . . .
"Sister Pineau was with me. We found Mr. Copin in bed, very weak, but calm and perfectly resigned.
"As I expressed the anxiety which I had felt on the day of his Communion at the thought that it would be very hard for him to stand the fatigue of waiting until morning, followed by the long stay in the Church, he answered: 'No, Sister, I was not tired that day. On the contrary, I went to bed at eight o'clock in the evening and the whole day was spent in the sensation of my happiness. In the morning I had something that worried me, and, as I wished to prepare calmly for this action, I wanted to see Father Hanicle once more to settle it. He soothed me by saying that I had already confessed it.
"I feared lest I should be very cold and yet I could prepare myself better than I had dared to expect. And afterwards, all the remainder of the day I felt too happy. You see it was something so overpowering that it was a case of telling our dear Lord it is enough. I could not bear so much, I thought I was gone; nevertheless I was calm and peaceful, saying to myself that I ought to accept that consolation, not for its own sake, but for the precious memory of it that would remain with me. I was so full of my happiness that it seems to me I could not have spoken of anything else . . . I was wishing that everybody would love God, that everybody would come to seek Him here in Holy Communion, and I so much regretted not having loved Him sooner!
"'When I found myself alone, closing my eyes, I let my tears flow, and my wife inquired if I had had some sorrow. I could give her no other answer except that my tears were from an excess of happiness and if it should continue, my heart must burst, as it could bear no more . . . But now, Sister, all is passed, and of that great happiness nothing remains but the memory. I feel again today, as well as yesterday, dry and cold, yet though our dear Lord should seem to abandon me a little, how could I complain, I who for so long a time had abandoned Him."
"I then told him that very likely our Lord intended by these moments of sensible grace, to strengthen his faith and relieve him forever of the doubts which had so painfully affected him since his conversion, to make him realize by these lights and consolations that He is truly hidden in the Sacrament of love. 'Oh! yes, Sister,' he replied, 'that is indeed what I was clearly given to know and to understand.'
"I was wishing, Father, you could witness as I did, the sweet peace with which he spoke of the graces received on that beautiful day. With what emotion he recalled them!"
"In presence of such sentiments, and contrasting them with those that animated Mr. Copin a few days ago, one cannot help considering such a change as humanly inexplicable, as a real miracle of grace.
"That Communion, as well made, imparted to him a strength and courage that never left him during the few days he had still to spend on earth.
"I remember," related Mr. Letaille, "that when he finished his thanksgiving, he reached me his hand saying: 'Now I have received enough to last to the end; I ask for nothing more.' He felt that henceforth it would be his turn to give.
"His strength returned a little at first; but soon he had to confine himself again to his room and bed, without ever interrupting his work or the little practices of piety he had embraced. He always received his relatives
and friends calmly and there was in his greeting something more cordial and affectionate than before his conversion; he let them see without affectation that he was using the rosary which never left him, as well as the Green Scapular that hung on his breast. He spoke to them with humility, but also with firmness, of his conversion, which he considered the greatest good fortune of his life.
"At last the end of his suffering came, for he did suffer greatly, but he knew how to conceal his pain with great fortitude. He liked especially to reassure his wife by assuming a cheerful countenance. As he judged her too weak to assist at his death, he begged me to keep her at a distance, and he bade her farewell in a note which he placed under the marble slab of his writing desk.
"His agony was incredibly sweet. Even then, when he could no longer hear what I said to him, with eyes riveted and face aglow, he repeated three or four times very distinctly: 'Ah! how glad I am! Ah! how glad I am!" Then he passed away gently.
"This is, in all simplicity, the relation of that conversion so surprising to those who knew the previous dispositions and the mental caliber of Mr. Copin, suddenly conquered and transformed by the application of that blessed Scapular. God has granted me the grace to witness other very edifying conversions but none has ever impressed me so strongly as did this one."
It was time for classes to begin in a large High School, and all the pupils were ready and interested in the subject, except one, and where was she, she who was always on time and fully alive to the day's work? Alas poor N. had a heavy little heart that morning and she was waiting to see the Sister Superior, to unburden her sorrow to the kind Sister whom she felt would help if anyone could.
"Good morning, N., what can I do for you?" asked Sister.
In tears and sobs the young girl said, "Oh, Sister, my mother will die today, my mother will surely die today!"
"Now, N., Sister said, "surely your dear mother is not that ill."
"I tell you, Sister, my mother will die of a broken heart today, because my sister is to be married to a divorced man and nothing will stop her. She has it all arranged, and they are to be married this morning. Oh, Sister, my poor mother will die!"
And the poor girl stood weeping by Sister's side. Suddenly Sister said: "Your mother will not die nor your sister marry that man either. Take this Green Scapular home this minute, tell mother to start saying the prayer: 'Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us now and at the hour of our death' and to say it over and over and not to stop, and I tell you that man will not marry your sister. Hasten on now, and tell mother this and to say the prayer with confidence in Blessed Mother, and all will be well."
"Poor N. started on the way home and did as she was told. The sorrow stricken mother received Sister's message and with a heavy heart, but as one clutching at a last straw, she began the hours of prayer for her poor deluded child. Surely Mary would help in this hour of anguish! The morning dragged on, the mother prayed, and Sister Superior too, and her students implored Blessed Mother for 'something very urgent that morning'; and all waited almost breathlessly for the outcome.
Early the next morning N. arrived in school, but oh, with what a different feeling. No, her sister did not marry that man as planned on the previous day, and this she hastened to impart to Sister Superior. With animation she came to tell Sister that the man who was in the army and who was permitted to have the day off for the marriage, when he came and saw how heartbroken the girl's mother was, said to his intended bride, "We had better wait, I could not go through this with your mother feeling as she does, let us wait a short while and see if she will not get over this and give her consent." What a surprise; what a moment of intense relief! Yes, Blessed Mother was doing her work and would continue to shield her child who had been so faithful to her in days gone by. So the marriage was put off indefinitely. However, it was decided between the couple that if the groom-to-be could get a furlough, they would be married, hoping by this time the mother would be reconciled. Sister urged the girl to tell her mother to continue the prayer and she knew Our Blessed Lady would not let that marriage take place. The prayer was answered. Just a few days before the furlough, all leaves of absence were withdrawn, that division of men ordered to start for parts unknown and all communications between the man and the girl were broken off. Thus did Mary show her power and reward the confidence of her humble servants who confided in her.
A patient was entered in the hospital as a Protestant and was operated on. A short time before she was to be discharged, the patients in the room with her received the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion. One day she remarked that she was a Catholic and had been brought up in a Catholic orphanage till she was almost twelve years of age. Then she had gone out to work in a good family. Later, she was married out of the Church and had brought up her children as Protestants which Church she herself had joined, about thirty-two years before. She very much resented being asked if she would not like to return to her own Faith, notwithstanding which she willingly accepted a Green Scapular. The next morning, the Sister, who had given her the scapular, came into the room and she noticed a worried look in the eyes of her patient. On inquiring if she could assist her the woman said she would like to see a priest. Throughout the long years she had been most unhappy for having left her childhood's faith but the friends she consulted had told her she never could return. She received the Sacraments and sent for her husband and told him she was determined henceforth to live up to the Catholic Church. Thanks to the Green Scapular she continues faithful to her good resolutions now she is again at her own home.
A young couple who were very wealthy suffered by losing all they had and were reduced to a state of great poverty. The wife was a Catholic but the husband a Protestant; their three little boys were being brought up Catholics. After they met with reverses, the mother became careless about her religion and neglected sending the children to church or catechism because she had no fit clothing for them, and in time all religion became a thing of the past in the family. Again, the wheels of fortune turned and they not only retrieved what they had lost but became millionaires. The mother gradually returned to the practice of her religion as did also two of the boys, but the oldest one did not. This was a source of continual worry to the mother who realized she was responsible before God, for, the son, now 55. He ignored all efforts to win him back. A neighbor, learning the facts, gave the mother two Green Scapulars and told her to have him wear one. He laughed and refused to do so. She then placed one on his bed and sewed the other in his suit. A few weeks later he said to his mother: "Guess where I have been. I have been to the Jesuits to have them instruct me in my Faith and prepare me to approach the Sacraments." Shortly after he made his First Confession and received his First Holy Communion. The family are extremely grateful to Our Lady of the Green Scapular.
The following incident occurred in a hospital conducted by the Sisters of Charity. A woman in one of the wards inquired for a Sister whom she had known some years before. The Sister went to see her immediately and found her suffering with a gangrenous leg and the Sister in charge of the ward gave the visitor very little hope of recovery, saying that it was well-nigh impossible to save the leg and she feared it would have to be amputated. This was sad, for the poor woman had no idea her condition was so serious. She was also a victim of diabetes. The leg was so swollen it looked more like a piece of stone than a human leg. Some days passed and as the leg was treated every day without showing any improvement, the poor patient began to be despondent about her cure.
Pitying her condition, a Sister gave her a Green Scapular, telling her to put all her confidence in our Blessed Mother. Lovingly and with kisses, she put it around her neck. The Sister also gave her a prayer leaflet of St. Joseph, and since it was the month of March she began a novena to St. Joseph. On the nineteenth, Feast of St. Joseph, she was much improved, for the greater part of the pain had ceased and the doctors now looked for her recovery. At the end of two weeks she was permitted to return home, where later on two of the Sisters called to see how she was progressing. She told them her leg was getting on fine and that the attending doctor thought that he would only need to make two more visits before he discharged her. She was still wearing the Green Scapular and she said she felt sure her recovery was due to Our Lady of the Scapular. Again and again, her children, who are quite grown, expressed their appreciation of their mother's cure and their gratitude to the Queen of Heaven.
My father, a convert for about eighteen years, left the Church over fifteen years ago because he said he could not believe in the Immaculate Conception and in the Infallibility of the Pope. During these intervening years he has often expressed the desire for the grace of Faith, but it was not until this year that it came.
Since last May, he has been wearing the Green Scapular and has said the prayer on it, asking others to pray for him also. Several days before he went to Confession, a Sister spoke to him about Our Lady and it seen that this time our Lord opened his eyes to the possibility of this mystery.
On the afternoon of the Feast [the date not provided in the account] of the Green Scapular, my father went to Confession and every day since then he has received Holy Communion.
He has told me since that he will always wear the scapular and each month he has Mass offered in thanksgiving to Blessed Mother for his return to the Faith.