Monday, October 18, 2010

Archbishop Lucas Of Omaha Suppresses A Catholic Group Of Spiritual Warriors

Mother Nadine Brown is a mother no longer.

Here's something you don't see very often.  Archbishop Lucas of Omaha has suppressed the Hermit Association of the Intercessors of the Lamb founded by Mother Nadine Brown.  One of the charisms of this group was Spiritual Warfare.  The following statement is from the Archdiocesan Office of Communications as posted on Spirit Daily, an independent publication.
October 15, 2010 

Today, for grave reasons, I suppressed the Hermit Association of the Intercessors of the Lamb. The reasons for this suppression are noted in a separate news release, principally, the refusal of the lay civil board of the Intercessors of the Lamb, Inc., a Nebraska corporation, to acknowledge my authority in making much-needed reforms in the community. The way of life of some fifty vowed members was in peril due to actions of a handful of civil directors. The vows of the former members have ceased (c. 1194), and they are to set aside the habit and refrain from using the titles “Mother,” “Brother,” or “Sister.” They are no longer considered to be in consecrated life or assimilated to it in the Church. I am providing for the care of the former members in the short-term, and remain committed to helping them in any way I can in the future.

From this point forward, The Intercessors of the Lamb, Inc., is in no way associated with the Catholic Church. As Archbishop of Omaha, and in view of my authority to govern and guard the liturgical and sacramental life of the Church (c. 835 §1), I hereby decree that no liturgical or sacramental celebrations are to occur on any property owned by the Intercessors of the Lamb, Inc., within the Archdiocese of Omaha.

Priests, deacons, and lay ministers are to observe this prescription. The chapel formerly known as the Our Lady of Light Chapel on the Bellwether campus in Omaha is no longer a Catholic chapel. Catholic faithful worldwide should be aware that any alms given to the Intercessors of the Lamb, Inc., are not being given to a Catholic organization. Those who previously had scheduled retreats or other Catholic ministry opportunities there should look elsewhere.

Those who consider themselves “companions” or “associates” of the Intercessors, some of whom have even taken vows, are hereby informed that such vows were never canonically recognized in the Church. Even if such vows were binding in conscience, they too cease in view of the suppression of the Hermit Association of the Intercessors of the Lamb and c. 1194. Of course, Catholic faithful are always welcome, in virtue of their baptism, to associate together and to pray. I would encourage those companions and associates to continue to pray for the former vowed members of the Intercessor community, for the Church, and for the needs of the world.


In attempting to do some research on this group I found there was very little concrete information available.  The official website has been shut down and some of the religious publishing houses which carried Mother Nadine Brown's CD's and books, have stopped distribution and instead give a link to the above statement of Archbishop Lucas.  It's really difficult to find much more than is listed in a Wikipedia entry. 

Everything I was able to find on Nadine Brown indicates she is pretty much equivalent to a New Age Channeler.  More interesting is that aspects of her story are not all that different from Mother Angelica's except Angelica managed to amass great deal of wealth through a media empire and Nadine Brown managed to get her little empire suppressed.  I'm not sure what that says except maybe one Bishop's Mother Angelica is another Bishop's Nadine Brown.  It's interesting that in view of the dissent within Angelica's order, dissension that culminated in a break away group, that Angelica's order still enjoys canonical sanction.  I'd hate to think this had anything to do with the amount of money Angelica managed to get to back her. 

In any event both women claimed to be hearing directly from God or angels, both apparently ran the orders they founded like little dictators, and both strongly advocated and taught the concepts of Spiritual Warfare. In case one thinks these two women are aberrations, think again.  There are any number of these recently founded Catholic lay apostalates, usually founded by a woman channeler, who all advocate Spiritual Warfare of some sort.  Sometimes these groups will work together such as in the case Mother Angelica's community and the group Opus Angelorum.  OA was established in 1949 in Austria on the writings of another woman channeler Mother Gabrielle Bitterlich.  She too founded an order of nuns and an associated order of priests.  Opus Angelorum was later given the Canonical status of a Public Association of Christian Faithful, but at the price of the suppression of some of the private revelations and associated rituals revealed to Mother Bitterlich.

The Vatican and assorted bishops have always had problems with mystics and private revelation.  It doesn't seem to me that it's rocket science to look at this phenomenon and call it what it is, channeling.  It's actually a fairly well researched phenomenon in which psychics, mostly all New Age, have undergone various medical and laboratory testing. This kind of ability is not limited to Catholic middle aged women, New Apostolic Reformation leaders, practitioners of Scientology, or any other religious and spiritual group.  It's a product of human consciousness.  Handled poorly it can lead directly to psychosis and paranoid schizophrenic type symptomology, handled well and with some mature discernment, it can lead to healing and enlightenment.

These abilities which seem outside normal sensory parameters need to be looked at dispassionately and free from religious paradigms or medical assumptions about their psychopathology.  In the case of many channelers, especially female, there is very frequently a history of disassociation due to early trauma or abuse. One can also find the same mental states generated in meditation, centering prayer, from the use of certain drugs, and yes, the deeply focused repetitive prayer Catholics call the rosary.  People who learn to disassociate early in life have an easier time entering these specific states of brain wave activity. 

Some good research studies indicate this may have a lot to do with neurotransmitter Dimethyltryptamine, commonly referred to as DMT.  DMT is a member of the serotonin family and is common to the drugs used by Indigenous communities to facilitate hallucinogenic states of spiritual communication. Brain wave patterns do not directly correlate with any notions of holiness.  They just are. 

What does correlate highly with religious enculturation is what one experiences when generating these specific brain wave states.  This is a phenomenon I have written on before in which I used the analogy of the rolodex.  If your personal rolodex only includes angels and devils and a war between them, that is all you are going to see because your fear and ignorance level will not let you see anything else. People who can achieve these states absolutely need emotionally and intellectually mature spiritual advisers or they will experience some seriously 'bad trips'--trips they may never recover from.  Operative words in the previous sentence are emotionally and intellectually mature, not religiously orthodox. 

I agree with Archbishop Lucas's decision to suppress this group.  What he needs to do is find a Catholic who is trained in trans personal psychology to help with some of the wreckage amongst the members of this group---wreckage which is being hinted at in the blogosphere, but not specifically delineated. This is powerful stuff these kinds of groups are into, and maybe it's past time Catholicism looks at it seriously from a less religious point of view and a more rational point of view.  It's important to do so if only to understand why this whole concept of channeling and spiritual warfare is so useful to the dominionist agenda of the New Apostolic Reformation. 


  1. Very interesting.

    I've never heard of this order. Your story ends with a twist. I expected, from the headline, that this was another witch hunt.

    In other news Rev. Schiller's Crystal Cathedral has just declared bankruptcy.


  2. It is not very clear from what I was able to research on the internet as to what the specific reasons were for Archbishop Lucas to suppress this group the way he did and it is not clear to me as to why you would agree with him.

    Why is this not considered a witch hunt by you?

  3. So Michael Brown is Mother Nadine's brother. Interesting. I make it a point to click often on Spirit Daily. I call it my End of the World site. It's very much into signs and omens that the end is nigh, but never nails down a specific date. Spirit Daily sure does spread some odd ideas, i.e., sprinkle holy water wherever you go.
    I wish I knew what was going on here. It looks like trying to get rid of cockroaches with a nuclear bomb.

  4. Butterfly, It's a cult of personality and Mother Nadine did not always practice ethical spiritual counseling nor even keeled leadership. Plus, she doesn't seem to have had any real power over those members of her foundation who controlled all the money. They completely refused to deal with Archbishop Lucas over accounting for their money. That was the final straw for him, and a big red flag for me.

    I can't tell for sure, but from some of the cryptic comments on one website I found, they may have had some followers who did not deal well mentally with charismatic manifestations.

    I just happen to think the Church has to put the breaks on these cults of personality based on channelers--oops I mean visionaries. The recent history of the Legionaires, Miles Jesu, The Blue Army, EWTN, and now this one, all point to the excesses that can happen when there are no brakes being put on the founders. Especially when there is money involved because these sorts of officially sanctioned Catholic groups can draw all kinds of interesting money sources and quickly become money laundering schemes.

  5. I think you should have included the links for Nadine Brown in which you determined it is a cult of personality and that she is a new age channeler. I did not come across that in my search to really make that connection.

    I agree that the "Church should put the breaks on these cults of personality based on channelers." It seems the Church is real quick if a woman might get a following and also real quick to disband. I wish the Church were quicker at addressing a heck of a lot of stuff that is real rotten.

  6. The Omaha World-Herald reported today that the IotL sheltered a woman who was wanted under a Federal warrant. See:

    Evidence, again, that wisdom & compassion need each other.

  7. Very interesting about them housing a fugitive. I wonder if they really new this, or if they were trying to help a lady who was in trouble, but didn't know the whole story.
    I have to say, that having been there on 2 retreats and almost joining there order, that there were some big problems down there.
    At first the group looked very good to me, and then the second time I went, to stay there, things just werent' right.
    I'm not sure this is all about Mother Nadine. My thought is that Mother Nadine didn't know what one hand and the other hand were doing.
    I am glad to hear that it was closed down. I know there were some wonderful people there, but things were out of control.
    Only time will tell, what really happened, and we may never be told.

  8. Michael Brown biography 30, 2010



    Michael Harold Brown was born in St. Mary's Hospital in Niagara Falls, N.Y. March 5, 1952, with twin sister Maureen. He is the son of Harold and Rose Brown. Harold was a CPA and Rose was a school teacher. They had eight children. Brown attended 24th Street Grammar School, Gaskill Junior High School, Niagara Falls High School, and Fordham University in New York City, where he obtained a degree in communications, specializing in print journalism. He interned at Newsday on Long Island. Upon graduation he was hired as a general assignment reporter for The Binghamton, New York, Sun-Bulletin. In 1976 he authored his first book, a journalistic and scientific look at those who claimed psychokinesis. In 1977 he rejoined The Niagara Gazette as a full-time reporter, covering outlying cities and towns and focusing on toxic-waste dumps in the towns of Lewiston and Porter. He then became the city hall reporter for Niagara Falls and a columnist. It was during this time that his focus turned to a toxic dump in the city itself, which soon became famous as "Love Canal." Through the grace of God, Love Canal grew into a major national and international story and sparked interest in the toxic waste problem. Michael also uncovered other toxic-waste threats. Michael's reporting was nominated for three categories of the Pulitzer Prize and drew a special award from the Environmental Protection Agency. President Carter declared Love Canal a national disaster. Michael then wrote a book for Pantheon (a division of Random House) entitled Laying Waste: The Poisoning of America by Toxic Chemicals, which was adapted for articles in The New York Times Magazine (three times), the Atlantic Monthly, New York Magazine, Rolling Stone, Family Weekly (now USA Today Magazine), and other magazines and major newspapers. The book drew many reviews and Michael appeared on hundreds of radio and TV shows, including national ones such as Today, Nightline, Larry King (radio), and McNeil-Lehrer. He lectured at more than a hundred colleges and universities for Royce-Carlton Lectures. He has spoken or appeared on media in more than 400 cities and towns in America and has traveled abroad extensively. He also wrote a book about air contamination called The Toxic Cloud. A book called The Search for Eve (Harper and Row, on paleoanthropology and mitochondrial DNA ancestral research) included a trip to deepest Africa. In the early 1980s, while writing a book about the Mafia for Simon & Schuster, he experienced a dramatic return to his Catholic faith (detailed in his book Prayer of the Warrior). His other books include Witness (for Faith Publishing, with Josyp Terelya), The Final Hour, The Trumpet of Gabriel, The Day Will Come, The Last Secret, Secrets of the Eucharist, After Life, Seven Days With Mary, The Bridge to Heaven, Sent To Earth, The God of Miracles, Tower of Light, The Other Side, and a novel, The Seven. His newest book is The Spirits Around Us. He and wife Lisa have three children, Elizabeth Grace, Joseph Michael, and Mary Rose, plus a parrot, Mikie, and are founders of the Catholic news website, They live near St. Augustine, Fl. Michael has traveled throughout Europe and other places researching apparitions of the Blessed Mother and spiritual phenomena.

  9. You might want to read this.

  10. Regarding the above link: the study on the link's home page about breast cancer. My mother had seven children & never used birth control or had hormone replacement therapy and she got breast cancer. It seems a shallow study and I cannot take the "study" very seriously considering that.

  11. I have been made aware of this blogsite spreading the false information that I am related to Nadine Brown. I knew her well, but there is no relation and this blog simply made it up -- which can have repercussions. Correct this immediately
    In Christ,
    Michael H. Brown

  12. Sorry Michael, I actually got the erroneous info from another site. This post has been fixed.

  13. The former members of the Intercessors are still working closely with the Archbishop and have been since the supression. If you are looking for an update on what is going on, go to

    The Archbishop even stopped for mass and lunch with them! The Archbishop wouldn't of done this or continue to support them if there weren't good people from that community wanting to still do Gods perfect will and work with the Shepherd of the Omaha Diocese.