The story of the Chapel of St. Catherine's Stone Chapel on the Rock surviving the recent flooding at the St. Malo Retreat Center, Colorado, seems to bear a rather spooky connection to the previous blog post:
ESTES PARK - Built atop a massive granite rock, it's in every way a part of the valley landscape. Saint Catherine's Stone Chapel on the Rock sits in the shadow of Mount Meeker, the 13,916-foot peak in Rocky Mountain National Park.
It was built in 1935 by Monsignor Joseph Bosetti with the intention of utilizing the symbolism of the strength of the rock that the chapel sits on.
When heavy rains unleashed a torrent of rock, mud, water and debris down the slopes of Mount Meeker the chapel would need that strength to simply survive.
"Everyone is agreeing that this was of biblical proportions," said Brenda Brown, a parishioner at the chapel.
The slide cut a path a quarter-mile wide through the valley, taking with it boulders and snapping large trees. The area was heavily forested before the slide. After it passed, the area was clear cut.
"The power of the water was terrifying," Brown said.
When the slide reached the bottom of the valley it had taken everything in its path, everything save for the Chapel on the Rock. The water, mud and debris reached the rock and then went around it.
"Some have taken it as a sign of discouragement, but on the contrary, most of us are looking at this as, hello, the rock is there. The chapel is there. God is here. Faith is real and here is a symbol of it," Brown said.
While the valley is a scene of destruction the chapel is undamaged. There is no mud or water damage to the interior of the historic chapel.
The chapel also holds historical significance because it was visited in 1993 by Pope John Paul II. The pope spent the day there and hiked trails nearby. A sign was erected at the trailhead that reads, "John Paul II Trailhead." A likeness of the pope is painted on the wood post.
That sign and painting escaped damage while just a few feet away trees were torn out of the ground by the slide.
(See the full article here)
Even though the chapel is named after St. Catherine of Sienna, rather than St. Catherine Labouré, the latter saint is named in honour of the former, so the connection is still there. Could this be another link with the flooding at Lourdes? Rather ominously, the flooding at Colorado began on 15th September - the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, whose pierced Immaculate Heart adorns the Miraculous Medal. The previous post discussed how Lourdes and the Miraculous Medal of St. Catherine Labouré are connected through the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception - which is in turn linked to the crushing of the Serpent's head in the Protoevangelium and the narrative of the Woman Adorned with the Sun in Rev 12. And now just after Lourdes was almost swept away by flood waters (recalling Rev 12:15-16), we have a Chapel dedicated to a St. Catherine built on a rock miraculously surviving a huge flood. In particular, it rather uncannily echoes the end of the previous post:
...[The vision of the Third Secret of Fatima which describes Our Lady protecting the world from being consumed by the angel's flaming sword by the rays of light which issue from her hands] is in turn directly lifted from the imagery of the Miraculous Medal, which depicts not only the head of the Serpent being crushed by the Woman of Revelation, conceived without sin, but also the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary - consecrations to which frame the 100 years of Satan's greater power foreseen by Pope Leo XIII. All of these considerations are then tied together in the fact the flooding at Lourdes on the 18th June directly parallels a passage in the Book of Revelation concerning the Woman Adorned with the Sun being threatened to be carried away by the flood that pours from the mouth of the Serpent after he has been cast to earth. But the Dragon fails in his attempt to sweep away the Woman with a flood, because the house of God is founded upon the rock of St. Peter, and the gates of Hell will never prevail against it:
“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”
"I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”