Message of the Blessed Virgin Mary
September 25, 2017
"Dear Children! I am calling you to be generous in renunciation, fasting and prayer for all those who are in temptation, and are your brothers and sisters. In a special way I am imploring you to pray for priests and for all the consecrated, that they may love Jesus more fervently, that the Holy Spirit may fill their hearts with joy; that they may witness Heaven and Heavenly mysteries. Many souls are in sin because there are not those who sacrifice themselves and pray for their conversion. I am with you and am praying that your hearts may be filled with joy. Thank you for having responded to my call."
The Miracle of the Son
October 13, 1917. The people gathered in thousands forming a crowd as large as a forest. They had come to the field outside the little Portuguese village of Fatima because three young shepherd children had told them that at noon there would be a miracle. Few were disappointed. As one of the many journalists who witnessed the event wrote, "The silver sun, enveloped in the same gauzy grey light, was seen to whirl and turn in the circle of broken clouds. The light turned a beautiful blue, as if it had come through the stained-glass windows of a cathedral, and spread itself over the people who knelt with outstretched hands…people wept and prayed with uncovered heads, in the presence of a miracle they had awaited. The seconds seemed like hours, so vivid were they."
That day became known as the Miracle of the Sun, and ninety-three years later, the date developed a special meaning for me and my family. I was pregnant at the time, and the precious months had not been easy. From time to time I would have a sensation within me that I could only describe as a seizure. It was almost violent, like a very rough shaking, and would last about a minute. It was not at all like a normal baby kick or movement that I was used to from my previous pregnancies. It happened at least half a dozen times, and on each occasion I was hooked up to monitors and told to lie still and wait. After an hour or so the doctors would come in and tell me that everything was just fine with my baby and then send me home. I knew they were wrong.
When they discovered that I had severe preeclampsia they induced me. My due date was not for another five weeks, but they felt it was worth the risk. And so Mary Grace was born October 13, 2010, right on the anniversary of the Miracle of the Sun. She was so tiny, at just over four pounds, and was sent to the NNICU for observation. Once she was in the unit her seizures - which I had been so convinced of while she was inside me-started up again. The terrible fits were almost impossible for the staff to control. Medication did not work, and with every seizure she stopped breathing, risking brain damage. Once they did a CT scan, they discovered that my little Mary Grace did have a problem, and it was a bad one---a blood clot in her brain.
An MRI confirmed the clot. Worse was the news that it was getting bigger. The doctors told my husband and me that Mary Grace must have had a stroke in the womb, and the result of the clot was that the cerebral sinuses were prevented from forming. These venous sinuses are vital, draining blood away from the head. Our little girl was missing something that was essential for life, and the doctor was clear on how serious the situation was. Mary Grace no longer had pupil dilation or a gag reflex, both of which are instinctual; even people in a coma have these reflexes. And added to the problem were the staph infection and pneumonia caused by being on the ventilator so long. Eventually we were told that there was nothing that could be done for her.
The only decision for us to make was when to turn the machines off and say good-bye to our beautiful baby girl.
But we felt there was one other thing we could do for Mary Grace before we said goodbye. We asked the priest to visit and anoint her and pray for peace, just as it says we should do in James 5:14-15. As he arrived and waited in the doorway, my husband turned to him, smiled and said, "You know we are expecting a miracle. No pressure!"
It was such a strange day. I know it seems hard to understand but we felt really good that day. We had done all we could do. Now it was up to God and God alone. Mary Grace was in God’s hands now, not ours. We went home that night to be with our other children. We prayed and tried to rest for what was to come. It was really a time of anticipation; we knew that whatever happened would be God’s plan, but, of course, we were hoping and expecting that the miracle that God would provide would be one in which Mary Grace stayed with us. That was our hearts’ desire, and there was a sense of being empowered as we and others from the church prayed.
There had been so little that we had been allowed to do for Mary Grace since she was born; even touching her was limited. We believe that there is grace in the sacraments, an outpouring of God’s love for us that is there for us when we need it. That night we felt at peace because we had done all that we could so that our daughter would know Christ and his church during that time.
The next day I woke up feeling excited. I couldn't wait for what came next. This was the day we would remember for the rest of our lives. As we drove to the hospital we were quiet, as we had been so many other times while visiting Mary Grace. The drives to the hospital--as well as out time by Mary Grace's incubator--had been very quiet. During times of great pain there really are no words to adequately express how you feel. It almost seems that if you were to open your mouth, an avalanche of pain would consume you. So, as we drove in, parked the car, and walked across the lot, we held hands and hugged.
Approaching the doorway to the NNICU, I saw one of the nurses standing outside. She looked up as we approached, tears covering her face. She was waiting for us, and I thought it was odd that they would tell us in such a public place, that our little girl had died. Shouldn't they be taking us into a quiet room, offering us a seat and a long explanation of how it all happened?
The nurse did not say anything; she just opened the door and urged us through. Maybe someone else was going to tell us. Maybe they wanted us to see for ourselves that she had died. But as we walked into the unit, passing the other babies laid out beneath ultraviolet lights in their cribs that looked like space capsules, we saw her. My girl, my baby girl, was alive. Her eyes were open, her body was wriggling, and she looked like a brand-new baby. She was alive!
Through the tears and the prayers and the hugs, we heard the doctors tell us that we should not expect too much from Mary Grace. They told us that the best we could hope for was cerebral palsy, but I didn't care! She was alive!
A couple days later they repeated the MRI, searching for the clot. But it wasn't there. It had vanished completely. They searched for a sign of brain damage, but again, they could find nothing but a healthy, normal looking brain.
Two years later Mary Grace is a typical, energetic girl. She gets into everything and is totally spoiled by her older sisters and five brothers. The doctor still cannot explain it, but we know the truth. We know that our girl, who was born on the day that celebrates the 'Miracle of the Sun', was blessed with a miracle that came straight from the Son himself.
Elizabeth Cavanaugh; Contributed by Shawna Grim
'The Existence of God: Convincing and Converging Arguments' by John J. Pasquini Lanham, M.D. University Press of America
Our Lady and the Agnostic
There are thousands of "inexplicable healings" reported every year at the Marian shrine in Lourdes, France, one of the most visited shrines in the world. However, only a minute number of these "healings" are deemed truly "miraculous" by the Church; the criteria for such a designation are extremely rigorous.
Many people reject the whole phenomenon, unaware of the rigor of the Church's studies and uninformed about how the Church validates or rejects the thousands of "apparent miracles" presented for examination. For many people, the concept of "miracle" is just the talk of charlatans, lacking any scientific basis.
This attitude of certain “intellectuals” contrasts the respectful posture of certain prestigious professionals such as the French doctor, Luc Montagnier, a recipient of the Nobel Prize in medicine (2008), who, among his various achievements, is credited with having discovered HIV.
A former director of the Pasteur Institute, this eminent scientist offered his opinion on Lourdes miracles in a book, LeNobel et le Moine (The Nobel [Laureate] and the Monk), in which he dialogues with the Cistercian Michel Niassaut. When the conversation turns to the inexplicable headings in Lourdes and Brother Michael asks the doctor his opinion as a non-believer, Montagnier responds: “When a phenomenon is inexplicable, if it really exists, then there is no reason to deny it.”
If the phenomenon exists, what's the point in denying it? It should be studied, not denied. Montagnier affirms that "in the miracles of Lourdes, there is something inexplicable," and he rejects the position held by some scientists, who "commit the error of rejecting what they don’t understand." I don't like this attitude. I frequently quote the astrophysicist Carl Sagan: "The absence of evidence is not evidence of absence."
Montagnier continues: "As far as the miracles of Lourdes that I've studied, I believe it really is something inexplicable." "I don't have an explanation for these miracles", he adds, "and I recognized that there are healings that are not included within the current limits of science."
Lourdes Echoe May-June 2017 issue Vol. 8 No. 4
Fatima and Medjugorje
By: Fr. Bill Kiel
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the apparitions at Fatima. Many individuals did not believe the Blessed Mother appeared to the three children and presented them with highly important messages pertaining to prayers and peace. Although the Catholic Church approved of the apparitions and messages, still many Catholics did not accept them. Apparitions and messages are not required to be accepted, since they are not given to be a teaching of the Catholic Church. Messages are given to bring people to a greater awareness of need for prayers for special intentions personally, locally, or internationally.
Conversion is a main theme of apparitions and messages. Fatima and Medjugorje messages have called for conversion. Conversion calls for a deepening of faith, in an ongoing relationship with Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. For those who have weakened or no relationships with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we must help them to conversion, meaning to return to living a Catholic life.
At Fatima, Mary called for people to stop offending God. The request went unanswered and World War II took place as foretold in a message at Fatima. At Medjugorje, prayer for peace was requested. Not many people heeded the request, and ten years after the messages began, war broke out in Yugoslavia.
Conversion and peace are themes of many messages at Medjugorje. Mary, Queen of Peace, is guiding us to conversion and peace within ourselves first, then peace within our families, churches and the world. Our peace is found in God, not in the things we think would bring peace to us. If we follow the guidelines of conversion - reading Scripture, monthly Confession, prayers from the heart, Holy Eucharist more often than Sunday, and fasting - we will develop a deeper relationship with Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Throughout the public messages given in Medjugorje, nearly 275 messages contain the word "conversion" or "peace". As we read the messages, do we take them to heart and try to live the messages for our individual conversion and to help others, or do we just read them and let them go? Has our prayer life changed? Is the Rosary a part of our daily prayers? Do we pray for the conversion of family, friends and strangers?
The messages given at Fatima and Medjugorje ask for special recognition and prayers to the Immaculate Heart of Mary and the Heart of Jesus. Do we go to the Heart of Jesus? Do we pray through the intercession of Mary? There are many beautiful ways to pray for our own conversion and peace and in the world.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, pray for us. Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us.
Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us.
The Spirit of Medjugorje, P.O. Box 6614, Erie, PA 16512
'Angel of Peace Prayer' to the Children in the Fall of 1916 prior to the Apparitions at Fatima O Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I adore You profoundly. I offer You the most precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifference by which He is offended. By the infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary I beg the conversion of poor sinners. Amen.
It is not well-known that the fourth apparition in Fatima did not occur on August 13, but on August 19, because the children had been detained by the police, and threatened to be thrown in boiling oil if they did not deny their story.
Many people do not know, also, how much the Medjugorje visionaries were persecuted at the beginning. Mirjana recounts in her book, My Heart Will Triumph, many incidents of persecution. In one early incident, Mirjana related that a federal "foul-mouthed" policeman became very frustrated when she would not deny the apparitions. When he told her to confess, she said, "I only confess to my priest." At this, Mirjana wrote that "the veins in his neck bulged." He told her to admit that she does not see Our Lady. She said, "But I do." At this, he pulled out his gun, so Mirjana prayed for help from Our Lady, and then felt a sense of calm. "After seeing Our Lady and experiencing Heaven, it was nearly impossible to be afraid of anything," Mirjana wrote. When the policeman asked once more for her to tell the truth, Mirjana replied, "The truth is that I see Our Lady, and I'm willing to die for her." The policeman slammed his fist on the table, and left the room.
Editor's note: We have a limited number of Mirjana's book and our book, I Have Come to Tell the World that God Exists we would like to offer for free to priest and religious. Please contact June at email@example.com
Our Lady to the Visionaries May 8, 1986
You are responsible for the messages. The source of grace is here, but you, dear children, are the vehicles transmitting the gifts. Therefore, dear children, I am calling you to work responsibly. Everyone will be responsible according to his own measure. Dear children, I am calling you to give the gifts to others with love and not to keep it for yourselves. Thank you for having responded to my call."
To hear Our Lady's Message, very early by phone, call 1-814-787-5683 (LOVE). Usually available the 26th of each month. Prayer requests at this number are given to the visionary, Vicka, so that she may offer them to Our Lady. Prayer petitions can also be hand written and sent in a sealed envelope to: The Holy Family, Inc., PO Box 442, St. Marys, PA 15857-0442. They are forwarded to Vicka who presents them to Our Lady.