Pope John Paul II, – Medjugorje, Its The Spiritual Heart of the World

Pope John Paul II “Medjugorje – The Spiritual Heart of the World
by admin on March 16, 2010
By Daniel Klimek, March 13, 2010

Pope John Paul II once powerfully observed, “Today’s world has lost its sense of the supernatural, but many are searching for it –and find it in Medjugorje, through prayer, penance, and fasting.” The late pontiff and future saint, his holiness, spoke these words on August 1, 1989,while addressing a group of Italian physicians studying the apparitions in Medjugorje with medical and scientific investigations.

It is no secret within Rome that John Paul II absolutely loved Medjugorje, once even acquiring the nickname “Protector of Medjugorje” within the Vatican. Even eminent American intellectuals were no strangers to this reality. The great Franciscan intellectual, Fr. Benedict J. Groeschel, himself an investigator of supernatural phenomena, once admitted about John Paul II in a revealing interview: “I can tell you for a fact that the pope loves Medjugorje from afar and would go there in a minute if the theologians would let him.”

While it is known that the late Polish pope never personally visited Medjugorje, what is less known is that throughout the last two decades of his life Pope John Paul II held personal meetings and correspondences with Medjugorje visionaries, Medjugorje priests, even Medjugorje inner locutionaries, and numerous pro-Medjugorje bishops. His enthusiasm and love for Medjugorje’s mystics was overwhelming and filled with abundant respect and a joyful beauty overcome with hope. One such example is when Medjugorje visionary, Mirjana Dragicevic Soldo, met with John Paul II. She once shared the details behind this poignant, and somewhat humorous, encounter while addressing a group of pilgrims:

“I personally had a such a great honor to be able to speak with late Pope John Paul II. That was so beautiful. I was in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome with all other pilgrims. Pope as he was walking by, he was blessing everybody. He blessed me and just walked away. And then this Italian priest I was with said ‘Holy Father, this is Mirjana from Medjugorje.’ He came back, blessed me again and he left. And I said to this priest, ‘Father, you see he just thinks that I need a double blessing’ [laughter]. However, in the afternoon we received an invitation tomorrow morning to come to Castelgondolfo, close to Rome in order to talk to Holy Father. I don’t have to tell you that I couldn’t sleep all night. Tomorrow when I reached the place, he saw that I was so excited. We were alone and then he started talking to me in Polish. He thought I would understand because both are Slavic languages. He wanted to make me feel comfortable but I didn’t understand a word because it’s not even close to our language. However, I was crying and I couldn’t catch a breath to say a word. So when I finally succeeded to say a word, I said ‘Holy Father, can we try in Italian ?’ [laughter].

*Then we talked and among other things he said to me, ‘If I were not Pope, I would be in Medjugorje a long time ago. I know everything, I have been following everything. Ask pilgrims to pray for my intentions. And take good care of Medjugorje because Medjugorje is the hope for the entire world………….’ ”

Beyond such personal words of encouragement and trust for the visionaries and the fruits of faith at Medjugorje, Pope John Paul II frequently displayed his appreciation in officially signed papal blessings as well. Two such official blessings were given by John Paul II to Fr. Jozo Zovko, O.F.M., the pastor in St. James Church at Medjugorje when the apparitions began, and to Vicka Ivankovic, one of the Medjugorje visionaries who still receives daily apparitions. Vicka, like Mirjana, has also personally met with the Holy Father in Rome, exchanging gifts and warm sentiments of faith. The official blessing she received from the late pope hangs on her wall, beautifully framed, in her home.

Fr. Jozo met with Pope John Paul II in 1992, in the midst of the wars in the former Yugoslavia. John Paul II’s words to Fr. Jozo were striking: “I am with you, protect Medjugorje! Protect Our Lady’s messages!” The passion and urgency of the Holy Father’s words for the protection of Medjugorje make clear how much the holy site, as to millions of Catholics, meant to him.

That Our Lady is appearing in Medjugorje, the Holy Father had little doubt about. The papal blessing he signed and gave to Fr. Jozo read:“I grant from the heart a particular blessing to Father Jozo Zovko, O.F.M. and I invoke a new outpouring of graces and heavenly favors, and the continuous protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Joannes Paulus II.”

The Holy Father’s own knowledge of Medjugorje and the major figures surrounding the events there was very impressive. Often his knowledge extended beyond the facts that many Medjugorje devotees may even know. For instance, most Medjugorje followers know that there are six visionaries. However, fewer may know that, in addition to the original six children who reported experiencing apparitions of Our Lady in 1981, two also reported experiencing interior locutions (locution cordis), the mystical grace of seeing and hearing Our Lady in an interior way – through the heart, especially when in prayer. Jelena and Marijana Vasilj, distant cousins, were the two youngsters who reported experiencing this grace. At Medjugorje, they acquired the nickname of “the seers of the second generation,” being ten year-old girls (compared to the older visionaries) during the beginning periods of the apparitions.

Of course, such idiosyncratic distinctions, between young mystics who received apparitions and those who received inner locutions—while perhaps a bit perplexing to many observers—were no problem for John Paul II to discern. He didn’t miss a beat. In 1988, John Paul II received a group of Croatian Catholics into his private chapel in Rome. He instantly recognized two members of the group from photographs he had witnessed. Approaching the two young girls, he said, “Ah yes, Jelena and Marijana, who have the interior locutions.” John Paul II greeted the girls warmly and stared into their eyes for some time with much amusement.

Today, both Jelena and Marijana are, of course, mature women. Jelena’s path has especially been interesting. Traveling to the United States for her undergraduate studies, she completed her B.A. at the Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. Shortly thereafter, Jelena returned to Rome where she pursued a doctorate in theology at the Gregorian University, always displaying a sophisticated mind with a deep appreciation for the Catholic faith.

Only two years after the pope met with “the seers of the second generation,” John Paul II sent his friend and confidant, Bishop Paul Hnilica, S.J., then Auxiliary Bishop of Rome, to accompany Marija Pavlovic, another Medjugorje visionary, on a visit to Russia. Bishop Hnilica continually told Marija how much the pope wished to visit Medjugorje. Similarly to the words John Paul II gave to visionary Mirjana Soldo during their meeting, the Bishop emphasized how the Holy Father explained to him: “If I wasn’t the Pope, I’d be in Medjugorje already!

Many bishops from around the world have had similar encounters with John Paul II on the topic of Medjugorje. In June 1986, in response to a group of twelve Italian bishops seeking advice on pilgrims traveling to Medjugorje, the pope recognized the indisputable fruits of faith present in the village: “Let the people go to Medjugorje,” he said, “if they convert, pray, confess, do penance and fast.”

Similarly, in April 15, 1990, the National Catholic Reporter quoted Bishop Michael D. Pfeifer of San Angelo, Texas. Bishop Pfeifer explained:“During my Ad Lumina visit to Rome with the Bishops of Texas in April 1988, I asked our Holy Father his opinion about Medjugorje during the private conversation I had with him. He spoke very favorably about the happenings there, pointing out the good which had been done for people. During the lunch which the Texas Bishops later had with the Holy Father, Medjugorje came up for further discussion. Again His Holiness spoke of how it has changed the lives of people who visit it, and said that so far the messages are not contrary to the Gospel.”

Likewise, during his Mass Homily at the Notre Dame Conference on Medjugorje delivered on May 14, 1989, Bishop S. Treinen, Bishop of Boise, Idaho, related a conversation he once had with John Paul II:

“In the course of it [our conversation] I said: ‘Holy Father, I have just come from Medjugorje. There are wonderful things going on there.’ The Pope replied: ‘Yes, it’s good for pilgrims to go to Medjugorje and pray and do penance. It’s good.’ That’s first hand, I heard him say it myself.”In February 1990, Bishop Murilo Krieger, then Auxiliary Bishop of Florianopolis, Brazil, reported a conversation with John Paul II about the apparitions, wherein the pope enthusiastically told him: “Medjugorje is a great center of spirituality!” Not only that but the Holy Father also happily assented to Bishop Krieger’s request, giving his papal blessings to the visionaries. Bishop Krieger explained:

“In 1988, I was with eight other bishops and thirty three priests on spiritual retreat in the Vatican. The Holy Father knew that many of us were going to Medjugorje afterwards. After a private mass with the Pope, before leaving Rome, he said, without having been asked anything, ‘Pray for me in Medjugorje.’ On another occasion, I told the Pope ‘I am going to Medjugorje for the fourth time.

* ’He concentrated his thoughts and said, “Medjugorje, Medjugorje, it’s the spiritual heart of the world’. On the same day I spoke with other Brazilian bishops and the Pope at lunch time and I asked him: ‘Your holiness, can I tell the visionaries that you send your blessing?’ He answered: ‘Yes yes,’ and embraced me.”

In addition to Pope John Paul II’s overwhelming support, in recent years Medjugorje has acquired some very influential supporters in Roman Catholic circles. Critics of Medjugorje, from the bishop of Mostar to German theologian Manfred Hauke, are given a lot of media attention. But what is noteworthy is how many cardinals have voiced their affection for the shrine, including Cardinals Tonini Ersilio, Emmanuel Wamala, Jean Margeot, Frantisek Tomasek and, most recently, his eminence Christoph Cardinal Schonborn, the Archbishop of Vienna who visited Medjugorje as a pilgrim for Christmas 2009. Even theologians have shown their appreciation. The French theologian Fr. Rene Laurentin and the Swiss theologian and cardinal Hansursvon Balthasar have been open Medjugorje supporters. Balthasar, in addition to being arguably the most eminent theologian of the twentieth century, is also known for co-founding—with his friend Joseph Ratzinger (the current Pope), and with others—the Catholic journal Communio. He frequently referred to the events happening at Medjugorje as “a theater of holiness.

*”Most recently, the popular American priest, Fr. Donald Calloway of the Marians of the Immaculate Conception, published his autobiography, No Turning Back: A Witness to Mercy. Fr. Calloway is the vocation director for the Marians of the Immaculate Conception, the author of numerous books, and a leading proponent of the Divine Mercy devotions of St. Faustina Kowalska. It was a book about Medjugorje, The Queen of Peace Visits Medjugorje, which led to Calloway’s famous conversion, going from an agnostic and destructive youth wrestling with addiction, promiscuous sex, and illegal crime to someone who found hope, peace, and meaning in Medjugorje, leading to the priesthood and to his current life of spiritual maturity and personal unity with Christ and Our Lady.

The messages and fruits of Medjugorje have reached an innumerable amount of people. From the faithful millions who have visited the village to the millions who have read about it, to some of the most influential members of the Catholic Church. Pope John Paul II, who many Catholics believe was a mystic himself, had a special relationship (in his immense spirituality and in his devotion to Our Lady) with Medjugorje. He asked others to protect Medjugorje and he believed that Medjugorje was the fulfillment of Fatima.

Monsignor Angelo Kim, President of the Korean Bishops’ Conference, once wrote about his encounter with John Paul II in the Korean national weekly newspaper, Catholic News, in 1990. Prior to the conclusion of the last Bishops’ Synod in Rome, the Korean bishops were invited to a lunch with John Paul II. Msgr. Kim addressed the Holy Father directly and said, “Father, thanks to you, Poland was able to liberate itself from Communism.” To this, the Holy Father responded, “No, this is not my merit. This is the work of the Blessed Virgin Mary, as She had predicted in Fatima and in Medjugorje.”

As mentioned, in the Vatican he was known as the “Protector of Medjugorje.” In reality, this relationship was mutual. According to the testimony of the Medjugorje visionaries, on May 13, 1982, on the anniversary of the Fatima apparitions and on the occasion of an assassination attempt on John Paul II’s life, Our Lady said, “His enemies tried to kill him, but I have protected him.”
Source-Medjugorje Org. Medjugorje Web

this article has been posted for informational purposes only….”Dear children, I invite you!
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A Child’s Prayer-Reflection on 4/2/11 Medjugorje Message

If you do not believe my words, at least believe my wounds...

“Dear children, with motherly love I desire to open the heart of each of you and to teach you personal unity with The Father. To accept this, you must comprehend that you are important to God and that He is calling you individually. You must comprehend that your prayer is a conversion of a child with The Father; that love is the way by which you must set out – love for God and for your neighbor.

That is, my children, the love that has no boundaries, that is the love that emanates from truth and goes to the end. Follow me, my children, so that also others, in recognizing the truth and love in you, may follow you. Thank you.

[Once again Our Lady called us to pray for our shepherds, our priests, and said: “They have a special place in my heart. They represent my Son.”]

When our Lady first gave this message what stood out for me was one her desire to ‘open the heart’ and to teach us how to have a relationship with God the Father.

Our Lady said that in order for us to accept this, we must comprehend that we are important to God, and that He is calling us individually.

Let’s look at this a little closer. How many of us think that God does not notice me? God doesn’t love me, or God won’t care? You know that the Catechism of the Catholic Church says, when there is doubt, there is spiritual blindness.

I had to think back, and still sometimes I find myself saying do you really love me Lord, do you really care that much? For most of us, it is easy to say that. Why? Because we’ve grown up with so little love from childhood on. We grew up with conditional love…for someone to love us unconditional is not natural for us to believe in, because we do not naturally know it. But its real.

Our Lady once said that children learn the love of God through mother and father loving each other, and through the love that parents give their children. If God is Father, and our relationship with our maternal father has been wounded or severed, then we are not going to know a fathers love, and will not come to know especially the love of God as Father. Our view of an imperfect father’s love will be distorted, to the point we say, I don’t need God because He was never there for me.

I cannot count how many times I hear this said by those who do not believe especially with teens-gosh the crisis with teens is so great right now. But yet they are still miserable, and bring misery into the lives of those around them.

Contrary to what we think, Our Lady makes it clear. YOU ARE IMPORTANT TO GOD. God knows us by name. God knew us before we were formed in the womb. (Jer.1) Not one child is an accident, NOT ONE!

Every human being was born out of the heart of the Father, out of love. The gift of baptism awakened the spirit within us to share in this life with the Father. It is God the Father that put your spirit in the womb of your Mother, and gave you a body to exist. The body is the vessel that carries your human spirit, united with the divine Spirit of God as a baptized Christian.

So why is it that so many do not know God’s love? Why is the world so cold to the love of God? Why is it so hard for anyone to enter into a loving relationship with their Creator and pretend to say He does not exist? How can we love or believe in something or someone that we cannot see?

Well like most relationships…it takes effort. You are going to get out of the relationship as much as you put in to the relationship.

We under estimate the power of the Word of God. If God who is all omnipotent can create such a vast and majestic universe has the power to do this by His spoken Word, how can we doubt when He said that (1) He will be with us to the end of time; (2) This is my body (my blood) given up for you; (3) If you see me you have seen the Father, for the Father is in me…and I can go on and on.

The Word of God (Jesus) came in the flesh so tell the world that the Father is real, and a living being. The Word of God allowed Himself to be handed over by men to be tortured and beaten to prove to the world that even to this kind of death, it is worth it to seek the Father.

Our Lady comes with the same message. It only takes an open heart to begin to understand that YOU ARE IMPORTANT TO GOD whether you want to believe it or not.

YOU ARE IMPORTANT TO GOD ENOUGH FOR HIM TO KEEP SENDING HIS OWN MOTHER INTO THE WORLD TO TELL YOU SO. If you are not feeling loved in your home, with your family, your spouse, community or work place you only have need to go so far as to your local parish the ark of salvation for all mankind, and sit before the Most Blessed Sacrament or the tabernacle where God Himself is fully present as He promised He would be, and let Him love you, and bathe you in His love. Here is the refuge for the human heart. The world cannot offer this love. Only God can offer the love the human heart desires.

I heard in the gospel yesterday the voice of the Lord say these words from John 8:47.

He said, “whoever belongs to God hears the Word of God; for this reason you do not listen because you do not belong to God…”

You belong to God if you hear the Word of God, and later he says, if you hear the word and ACT ON IT. This is Jesus saying this to those who did not believe in Him or His Word, which He said that He spoke from what He heard from His Father. He came to testify to the truth.

Jesus said, “no one can come to the Father except through me.” Saints Peter and Paul both said that there is no other name given to mankind for salvation except the name of Jesus Christ. So then why are we chasing after false prophets? The name of Jesus Christ every knee must bow in the heavens, on earth and under the earth.

The name of Jesus Christ is the ONLY WAY TOWARD SALVATION. Jesus Christ is the only acceptable sacrifice pleasing in the eyes of the Father. If we want to know the Father, we must know the Son. We must look like Jesus. We must come to know Jesus in the most intimate way as a Bride who desires to be one with her Spouse.

The Father is offering a love and is extending his hand in mercy to a world that is in desperate need of it. Jesus, Who is Divine Mercy said His mercy is unfathomable, incomprehensible; that means there is no limit, no end, no boundaries as our Lady just said. His mercy and love is eternal…never ending. We only have need to “open our hearts to receive it.”

So we have to ask ourselves, what is standing in the way of me receiving the love of God. What do I give more importance to in my life that is more important to God?

Who is the father we believe? The father of lies that says you are no good, that God does not love you? Or do you believe the Word of God in the flesh Who says, “I am love and mercy itself; put great trust in my unfathomable mercy…” God does not create junk. On the contrary God said what He has created is good.

The Lord began to teach more on the scripture from the gospel of John 8:42-46. He had me focus on these words all the more…

“If God were your Father you would love me for I come from God and am here, I did not come on my own, but He sent me. Why do you not understand what I am saying? Because you cannot bear to hear my word…”

Jesus is asking those who are questioning him “Why do you not understand what I am saying?” He repeats often, that those who know Him, know His voice and will recognize truth. If we do not know Him, then we do not know truth, and will not recognize nor accept His voice in the Word.

But the Lord made it clear, if we do not listen to His voice, then there is only one other voice that we welcome, as he said because we cannot bear to hear the truth-because that would mean we would have to change our life-and we get too comfortable in our sin; or we cannot bear to think we have to put effort into changinig for the good….

“Because you cannot bear to hear my word you belong to your father the devil and you willingly carry out your fathers desires. He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie he speaks in character because he is a liar and the father of lies. But because I speak the truth, you do not believe me…If I am telling you the truth why do you not believe me?”

There is the truth and there is the lie. Which is easier to believe? Truth cuts through the heart. Truth breaks open the heart, and often comes with pain. Human nature naturally hides from truth. The Lord is revealing Himself in fullness of truth, but we cannot bear to hear it.

I find it is no different today. Our Lady in her messages is offering a remedy to the whole human race to reconcile with God. The outreach of heaven is incomprehensible at this time, and yet still so many are rejecting her love. She wants to teach us how to pray to the Father, she wants to teach us how to love her Son, and remind us of how He suffered for us so patiently with such great love. And what is the typical response of most of her children; “ah, that’s nice, Oh so what..or I cannot live that kind of life, that is for someone else…”

Really? If we are rejecting her, we are rejecting the one who sent her. In the gospel of John, the Lord spoke to us about the world’s hatred. He said if they rejected you, remember they rejected Him first. How so true do I find these words to be with the obstinacy of human creatures, even among those closest to me who have seen and witnessed great things.

And for this and the hardness of hearts, the Lord said he would send a deceiving spirit so that they would believe the lie. And so dear friends, here we are today. If we reject the one Whom the Lord sends, then we are rejecting him, and we have chosen another god in the making, the father of lies.

Our Lady calls us little children. Do we know the power of the prayer of a little child? A child who speaks only from the heart when a child is in need of the love of mother or father?

I remember when my girls were little, and to hear the words…’mommy or daddy’ would just melt my heart with their tiny little voices. How do you think the Father would respond to such love and innocence of a child who cries out to him in love.

This is what Our Lady means when she says, “…you must comprehend that your prayer is a conversation of a child with the Father; that love is the way by which you must set out, love for God and neighbor….”

Jesus taught us how to pray to the Father. Read the gospels. Seek out how many times He went off to pray to His Father in secret. John chapter 17 is a good reflection on the prayer of Jesus. Now put love to this prayer as you hear the words, “Father, they are your gift to me…”

We can hear these words as parent with our children, or we can hear it as Jesus praying for me; or we can hear it as Blessed Mother praying the words of her Son to the Father for our sake….the depth of the Word of God is boundless and eternal. If we only knew the power of His mercy in it.

Once we understand this and the Word of God becomes flesh in us, and who we are, then the love of God will emanate from us TRUTH, and nothing can stop His truth from moving forward. Others will begin to see that living love is within the heart, and others will desire this love and long for it. And before you know, conversion of heart is moving ahead.

My friends, the only way the fruit of Medjugorje will be known in the world is if the pilgrims of Medjugorje are living in the world as a witness to Our Lady’s time of visitation with her Son. One cannot go to Medjugorje and go back to his former way of life…woe to you if you did not take to heart the seriousness of the grace that had been given you. The more evil tries to end what is good, the more accountable the children of Our Lady must be for truth and to live the truth as what she calls apostles of love. We are responsible to make Medjugorje known by our deeds, not just in words.

YOU ARE IMPORTANT TO GOD IN THIS TIME. WITHOUT YOU GOD’S PLAN CANNOT BE REALIZED. BE A WITNESS THAT YOU LOVE GOD ABOVE EVERYTHING. HOLY MARTYRS DIED WITNESSING, I AM A CHRISTIAN AND I LOVE GOD OVER EVERTHING…DO NOT SURRENDER!

Debates can go on and on in word, but deeds do not lie. Your actions must speak louder than your preaching…it is required! Christians can no longer shrink from their Christian vocation.

Remember these words of Jesus to St. Faustina… “If you do not believe my word, at least believe my wounds.” Now, there is truth. Live out the remaining days of your Lenten season gazing at Jesus Crucified, and thank him with all your heart for the immeasurable love He has for you, and on Good Friday beg the Lord for mercy upon the whole world and be reconciled to God.

Let us all pray for our shepherds and priests, and for the fulfillment of the great plan of God.
Ave Maria!

“Do not be afraid of sufferings; I am with you (151). The more you will come to love suffering, the purer your love for me will be. (279)” (Diary of St. Faustina)

Be sure to take to prayer you call to go to Medjugorje. We are taking pilgrims, especailly young people on August 4th through 8/16. Click on the tab for the 22nd Annual Youth Prayer Festival for more information. A great gift for one who is graduating and beginning their adult life preparing for their vocation.

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Notes from Vicka Talk and Medjugorje

and you yourself a sword will pierce...

This post is for information only from a recent talk given by fellow Medjugorje pilgrims. It is important to note the important high lights of the call from the Mother of God to her children.

Dear Family of Mary!

“Dear Children! I am with you and I bless you all with my motherly blessing. Especially today when God gives you abundant graces, pray and seek God through me. God gives you great graces, that is why, little children, make good use of this time of grace and come closer to my heart so that I can lead you to my son Jesus. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (June 25, 2001)

This is definitely a time of unparalleled graces. Our Lady has said this many times over the past 30 years. We have only to make good use of this time and open our hearts to accept them.

Denis has returned from his short trip to Medjugorje, and brings with him reports of those graces! He went to inspect the TV facility, and found it in very good shape. Everything is now finished and ready to be used, except for our studios. As soon as the Lord provides the funds, we will finish those studios and begin streaming and broadcasting! Amazing!!

While he was in Medjugorje last week, Denis was able to attend a short talk given by Vicka. He took some notes, based on the English translation by Miki Musa, which I want to share with you. Vicka’s words are full of hope and wisdom. She gives us again the way to open ourselves to the graces Our Lady speaks of:

“Vicka said that the Rosary protects us from Satan. She said that parents should pray the Rosary with their children. Satan cannot do any harm to us if we pray. Our Lady also advises that we carry blessed religious objects with us. Our Lady also tells us to put Holy Mass at the first place in our life, to adore Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, and to go to Confession once a month.

“Vicka also said that young people find themselves in a very, very difficult situation. We can help them only with our love and prayer with the heart. Our Lady says: ‘Dear young people! Today’s world is passing!’ Satan is using every free moment for himself, working through young people to destroy our families.

“Vicka continued: ‘This time is a time of great graces. She calls us to be carriers of her peace and to prepare for peace in the world. First, pray for peace in our own heart, then peace in our family, community, then will come peace in the world. If we pray for peace in the world and don’t have peace in our hearts, that doesn’t make any sense!’

“Vicka stated: ‘Gospa needs our prayers for the realization of her and God’s plans. Our Lady invites us to read the Holy Bible every day, to read a few lines and to try to live that every day. Gospa asks us to pray for the Pope, bishops and priests, the whole church needs prayers. In a special way pray for one plan that is supposed to be realized soon. Our Lady has been stressing recently that young people and families are in a very, very difficult situation. Our Lady prays for peace and asks us to help her in this same intention with our prayers.

“Tonight, Vicka said, she will recommend all of us to Our Lady. ‘You, too, at 5:30 pm open yourself and your heart and tell her all your wishes and intentions,’ she added.” (Short talk by Vicka Mijatovic given in Medjugorje on April 4, 2011)

We can see all the basic elements of Our Lady’s messages in Vicka’s comments: prayer, especially the Rosary, peace, conversion, the Bible, Holy Mass, Confession, the family, and Our Lady’s special plan. If we live these things, really live them, we will receive all the graces that are being poured out upon us in these days. I especially like Vicka’s advice to open our hearts to Our Lady at apparition time, and to ask for all we need then. If we ask, we will receive!

Let me conclude with this little prayer to Our Lady written by St. Faustina:

“O sweet Mother of God,
I model my life on You;
You are for me the bright dawn;
In You I lose myself, enraptured.

“O Mother, Immaculate virgin,
In You the divine ray is reflected,
Midst storms, ‘Tis You who teach me to love the Lord,
O my shield and defense from the foe.” (Diary 1232)

Truly, Mother Mary is our mother, the one who is here to help us draw close to God and receive His grace. Thank you, dear Mary, for coming again today for us!

In Jesus, Mary, and Joseph!
Cathy Nolan

Posted in Blessed Mother, Blessed Virgin Mary, Catechism of the Catholic Church, Catholic, Catholic Spirituality, Catholicism, children of medjugorje, contemplation, contemplative prayer, conversion, dear children, desert, divine love, Divine Mercy, Faith, Family, family consecration, family conversion, family formation, family healing, family life, Family Novena, family prayer, family rosary, family traditions, Family Values, Fasting and prayer, Fasting prayer, Fount of mercy, Good Friday, grace and mercy, Holy, Holy Family, Holy Family Workshop, Holy Mother, Holy Spirit, human spirit, husbands and wives, intercession, intercessors, Jesus Christ, Jesus I trust in you, Lent, Lenten Exercise, Lenten prayer, Lenten Preparation, Lenten Reflection, Love, love of God, Marriage, married couples, married love, Mass, Mediatrix, Medjugorje, Medjugorje Healing, medjugorje message, Medjugorje pilgrimage, Medjugorje visionaries, New Springtime, Nine Day Novena, Novena, novena for parents, novena for youth, open your hearts, Our Lady, peaceless world, personal conversion, pray for unbelievers, Pray with the Heart, Prayer, prayer for families, prayer for priests, prayer for unbelievers, prayer for youth, Prayer with the heart, priest, Priests, private revelation, prophecy, Queen of Peace, reconcile, reconciliation, Religion, Religious, Rosary, Rosary Novena, St. Faustina, St. Joseph, time of grace, time of mercy, unbelievers, universal, universe, Vatican, vocation, Way of the Cross, Word made flesh, Word of God, world. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Leave a Comment »

Week 5-Lenten Exercise “Lord Grant Us Perseverence”

The Bride must resemble her betrothed...

The Lord has asked me to slow down for this week, as there are many who are struggling with being able to keep up with this exercise. DO NOT GIVE UP, PRESS ON ALL THE MORE AND KEEP YOUR FOCUS. For this reason the gift we will work on is the gfit of Fortitude and the strength to carry the cross all the way to calvary.

Living the life of Jesus and the way of the cross is not easy, but it comes with a triumph in the end. If we do not believe this, then meditate on the death and passion of the Lord. He has risen and is fully alive today and in our midst. But we must see with the eyes of faith, and firmly believe that Jesus makes all things new!

We are coming to the end of this Lenten journey in just a mere couple of weeks. Review and look back to see how far you have come. Where are the areas of growth for you and reflect about what you have experienced thus far with this walk through the desert with Jesus and Mary, and what gift of grace the Lord has prepared for you. Keep your focus on the vision of the plan of God for you. Do not be dismayed if this plan is not exactly the way you imagined it would be, for all too often we put our human expectations and emotions in the plan.

God seeks only our salvation. And His plan will acheive that end in its perfection, and is contrary to our own way of thinking. IF YOU HAVE NOT MADE IT TO CONFESSION YET THIS MONTH, DO SO AS SOON AS POSSIBLE TO PREPARE YOUR HEART FOR THE RISEN LORD TO ENTER.

Throughout this week pray for a deep gift of fortitude to continue the journey.

REMEMBER PRAY TO THE HOLY SPIRIT BEFORE WORKING ON THE DAILY EXERCISES

Daily Meditation:

“Dear children! I invite you to reflect about your future. You are creating a new world without God, only with your own strength and that is why you are unsatisfied and without joy in the heart. This time is my time and that is why, little children, I invite you again to pray. When you find unity with God, you will feel hunger for the Word of God and your heart, little children, will overflow with joy. You will witness God’s love wherever you are. I bless you and I repeat to you that I am with you to help you. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (1/25/97)

Day 1
“Dear children! Also today I am with you and I again call all of you to come closer to me through your prayers. In a special way I call you to renunciation in this time of grace. Little children, meditate on and live, through your little sacrifices, the passion and death of Jesus for each of you…” (2/25/98)

“My daughter, I am always with you. I have given you the opportunity to practice deeds of mercy which you will perform according to obedience. You will give me much pleasure if each evening you will speak to me especially about this task.” (Jesus – Diary #1267)

Jn. 10:17-18, Jn. 15:5, Rom. 8:29, 1 Jn. 4:18

Day 2
“…Only if you come closer to Jesus will you comprehend the immeasurable love He has for each of you. Through prayer and your renunciation you will become more open to the gift of faith and love toward the Church and the people who are around you. I love you and bless you. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (2/25/98)

“…suffering will be a sign to you that I am with you…” (Jesus-Diary #869)

Is. 40:31, Ps. 18:1-2, Mt. 27:39-42

Day 3
“Dear children! Also today I call you to fasting and renunciation. Little children, renounce that which hinders you from being closer to Jesus. In a special way I call you; pray, because only through prayer will you be able to overcome your will and discover the Will of God even in the smallest things. By your daily life, little children, you will become an example and witness that you live for Jesus or against Him and His will.” (3/25/98)

“…It is in My Passion that you must seek light and strength…Fear nothing, I am with you.” (Jesus – Diary #654-55)

1 Cor. 13:4-8, Jn. 19:26, Mt. 16:21, Jn 13:37

Day 4
“….Little children, I desire that you become apostles of love. By loving, little children, it will be recognized that you are mine. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (3/25/98)

“Do not fear anything. I am with you. These matters are in My hands and I will bring them to fruition according to My mercy, for nothing can oppose my will…I am always in your heart; not only when you receive Me in holy Communion, but always.” (Jesus-Diary #573, 575)

Jn. 21:18, Jn. 21:19, Jn. 20:19, Acts 4:29-31

Day 5

“Dear children! Today I invite you to come still closer to me through prayer. Little children, I am your mother, I love you and I desire that each of you be saved and thus be with me in Heaven. That is why little children, pray, pray, pray until your life becomes prayer. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (8/25/98)

“…My delight is to be united with you. With great desire, I wait and long for the time when I shall take up My residence sacramentally in your convent. My spirit will rest in that convent and I will bless its neighborhood in a special way. Out of love for you all, I will avert any punishments which are rightly meted out by My Father’s justice…I have inclined my heart to your requests…” (Jesus – Diary #570)

Ex. 14:13-14, Eph. 6:11-13, Lk. 4:18, 2 Cor. 1:22

Day 6
“Dear children! Today I call you to become my witnesses by living the faith of your fathers. Little children, you seek signs and messages and do not see that with every morning sunrise, God calls you to convert and to return to the way of truth and salvation. You speak much little children, but you work little on your conversion. That is why, convert and start to live my messages, not with your words but with your life. In this way, little children you will have the strength to decide for the true conversion of the heart. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (9/25/98)

“…Your assignment and duty here on earth is to beg for mercy for the whole world. No soul will be justified until it turns with confidence to My mercy, and this is why the first Sunday after Easter is to be the Feast of Mercy. On that day, priests are to tell everyone about My great and unfathomable mercy….tell the confessor that the Image is to be on view in the church and not within the enclosure in that convent. By means of this image I shall be granting many graces to souls; so let every soul have access to it.” (Jesus – Diary 570)

Is. 53:5-6, Jn. 16:33, Rev. 2:10-11, Mt. 7:13

Day 7 – Review

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Week 4-Forty Days in the Desert-Lord Quench My Thirst

Lord quench my thirst for you...

Pray this week in a special way for the gift of an open and receiving heart, as a bride who receives her bridegroom in love and mercy.

Remember to begin each day with the prayer to the Holy Spirit. Really take the time this week to reflect on the theme of the Catechism of the Catholic Church with the weekly reflections. The Lord is moving a step forward and calling us into deeper union with Him. Remember to keep track of the way the Lord is moving in you through your prayer journal, and the areas of growth or healing He desires to accomplish through your heart.

A quick note – work at your own pace in these exercises according to your schedule in your state in life. Some days you may not be able to rest with the Lord as you are with other days. God honors your time you give to him, and can multiply the graces all the more.

Catechism of the Catholic Church – CCC 2655-2679

“Dear children, today I thank you for every opening of your hearts. Joy overtakes me for every heart that is opened to God especially from the parish. Rejoice with me! Pray all the prayers for the opening of sinful hearts. I desire that, God desires that through me. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (4/18/85)

Day 1

“Dear children, today I want to tell you to begin to work in your hearts as you are working in the fields. Work and change your hearts so that a new spirit from God can take its place in your hearts…” (4/25/85)

“…My beloved daughter, you have come to know well the depths of my mercy. I will do what you ask, but unite yourself continually with my agonizing heart and make reparation to my justice. Know that you have asked me for a great thing, but I see that this was dictated by your pure love for me, that is why I am complying with your requests…” (diary 873)

Ps. 19:10, Ps. 111:10, Jn. 21:16-17

Day 2

“Dear children, today I call you to prayer with the heart, and not just from habit. Some are coming but do not wish to move ahead in prayer. Therefore, I wish to warn you like a Mother. Pray that prayer prevails in your hearts in every moment. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (5/2/85)

“It is my Passion that you must seek light and strength…fear nothing, I am with you.” (Diary 654-55)

Jn. 21:15, Jn. 13:34, 2 Cor. 5:20-21

Day 3

“Dear children, no; you do not know how many graces God is giving you. You do not want to move ahead during these days when the Holy Spirit is working in a special way. Your hearts are turned toward the things of earth and they preoccupy you. Turn your hearts toward prayer and seek the Holy Spirit to be poured out on you….” (5/9/85)

“…My omnipotent mercy is active here. Happy the soul that takes advantage of this grace. What joy fills my heart when you return to me. Because you are weak, I take you in My arms and carry you to the home of my Father…” (diary 1486)

Rom. 8:19, Lk. 24:47, Acts 9:31

Day 4

“…I am calling you to more active prayer and attendance at Holy Mass. I wish your Mass to be an experience of God. I wish especially to say to the young people; be open to the Holy Spirit because God wishes to draw you to Himself in these days when satan is at work…” (5/16/85)

“…You have a special claim on my mercy. Let it act in your poor soul; let the rays of grace enter your soul; they bring with them light, warmth and life. My child, all your sins have not wounded my heart as painfully as your present lack of trust does; that after so many efforts of my love and mercy you shouldn’t doubt my mercy…” (Diary 1486)

2 Cor. 4:10-12, 1 Jn. 4:19, Jn. 15:12-13

Day 5

“Dear children, these days I call you especially to open your hearts to the Holy Spirit. Especially during these days the Holy Spirit is working through you. Open your hearts and surrender your lives to Jesus so that He works through your hearts and strengthens you in faith…” (5/23/85)

“Here soul, are all the treasures of my heart. Take everything you need from it. Tell me all, my child, hide nothing from me because My loving heart, the Heart of your best friend is listening to you.”

Matt. 9:11-13, Matt. 11:29-30, Is. 45:3

Day 6

“Dear children, I call you again to prayer with the heart. Let prayer, dear children be your everyday food in a special way when your work in the fields is so wearing you out, that you cannot pray with the heart. Pray, and then you shall overcome even every weariness. Prayer will be your joy and your rest. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (5/30/85)

“Poor soul, I see that you suffer much and that you do not have even the strength to converse with me. So I will speak to you. Even though your sufferings were very great, do not lose heart or give in to despondency. But tell Me my child, who has dared to wound your heart? Tell me about everything; be sincere in dealing with Me, reveal all the wounds of your heart. I will heal them, and your suffering will become a source of your sanctification…do not be discouraged. I know your boundless trust in me; I know you are aware of my goodness and mercy. Let us talk in detail about everything that weights so heavily upon your heart..talk to me simply as a friend to a friend. Tell me now, my child what hinders you from advancing in holiness?”

Rev. 21:3-5, 1 Jn. 1:3-4, Jn 3:16, Jer. 1:5-8

Day 7 Review

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“I Desire to SEE Your Yes…”

Dear children, I am with you and I pray for you before my Son...

“Dear children! In a special way today I desire to call you to conversion. As of today, may new life begin in your heart. Children, I desire to see your ‘yes’, and may your life be a joyful living of God’s will at every moment of your life. In a special way today, I bless you with my motherly blessing of peace, love and unity in my heart and in the heart of my Son Jesus. Thank you for having responded to my call.” (3/25/2011)

Whew, it does not seem to be enough hours in the day these days. But I’ve been feeling Our Lady tugging my heart for these recent words she spoke to the world about.

As we seek wisdom with the Holy Spirit in this holy time of Lent, our Lady is reminding us what Lent is all about… “conversion of heart.” To experience conversion of heart we enter into a new birthing so to say; a new life in Christ in a new way.

Our Lady is here today very near to us. As the scripture says, “the Kingdom of God is at hand…” Our Lady brings to us her Son Jesus. He is the Kingdom in fullness.

Blessed Mother wants to obtain for us the graces we need to go deeper into our conversions. She asks us to press tightly to her motherly heart as an infant child would; who would want to be comforted, held and loved with the warmth of her embrace.

We are in the spring time of season…Our Lady desires a new life to come forth from our hearts. She has repeated this in her message of 2/25/2011. As with all of God’s creation on earth, the buds are coming forth and so are the flowers beginning to sprout from the earth. It is the same for us. These are signs for us to seek anew the beauty of God’s creation in the human being and the dignity of another.

She said in the above message, “Children, I desire to see your ‘yes’, and may your life be a joyful living of God’s will at every moment of your life…

There is no play on words here. She did not say I desire to “hear your yes”. But she desires to see our yes. When we give her our hearts and we consecrate ourselves to her, she wants to see us take action. She wants to see we really mean what we say to her.

Now I am a mother. When my child makes a promise to me that they will do something, I have a level of expectation that they will complete what they have promised to do. If we say I give you everything of myself dear Mother, but I do not love my neighbor, or I go on committing the same sins, then I have fallen, and I must show that I am remorseful for the wrong I have done.

Can we make a promise to the Mother of God, and underneath our breath say no way, I’m not going to do that. She may be asking us to carry a burden or a cross that may help us to grow more in holiness. This cross may birth new graces for others to help them in their conversion.

Intercession is a powerful tool to obtain graces for others. It is the mission of Jesus in the most personal and intimate way, and the highest form of prayer to offer of oneself in the body through a simple word, “yes”.

If we say yes to our dear Mother in heaven for our crosses, then she is able to take us with seriousness, and pass our deeds of mercy on to her Son, who can multiply those graces to where ever they need to go.

For example, I had a recent experience through some dreams I have been having. They seem to be of the same meaning, but they’ve come in different ways. Most prominent was the one I just had last night. The Lord will often use dreams in our subconscience to convey to us what He wants to bring to conscience for us, or what He wants us to do for Him.

In this particular dream I saw two people, they seemed to be Japaneese in my dream, at least I awoke thinking this. But these two people were sinking in a mud pit, reaching out for help. Now in hindsight I would say the recent tsunami victims, at least I felt this in my heart. When I took this to prayer, the Lord was showing me, these were souls in Purgatory who are in need of prayer. So I understood they were souls crying out for prayer in their suffering state. So through the holy Mass today, with Our Lady I prayed for the poor souls.

Our Lady often says, “dear children, you are all important in this plan…with out you I cannot fullfill my plans….” If you are willing and you give your yes to her, when things such as dreams or inspirations come forth our prayer becomes one with the will of God, and the prayer is answered.

Isn’t that logical? If we know what God wants us to pray for, then the prayer will be answered? We must always be quiet to listen for those promptings of the Holy Spirit.

I get numerous requests from people who ask me to pray to God for discernment for themselves. My response always is, “I cannot discern anything for you that you don’t already know, because the Kingdom of God is within.” The problem is we are not listening, and we are deaf to His Word. I will pray with the one who asks, but in truth the discernment is between God and the one discerning.

The Lord will use the voice of others to confirm something we are discerning, the voice of His Church or his prophets. The ones who are open, who say “yes” to be empty vessels of the Holy Spirit, are the ones hearing the voice of the Lord. These are the ones who are being stripped of everything from worldly standards, and allowing more of the spirit of Jesus to dwell within. Remember, God is Spirit. He desires to be in full Spirit in the human being made in His image and likeness. We have to desire this, and work for this. That means sin has to go!

How are we living her call as being that joyful witness of living God’s call in our life? Are you ready to go to the cross if that be the will of God for you, in joy?

Living God’s will is not always easy. That means our will has to go. We have to pray as Jesus prayed, “not my will but yours be done in me.” This by the way was a prayer while Jesus was in the Garden in Agony. He layed down His will as much as He was suffering, and surrendered it all to the Father, because He had the full vision of the plan of God, knowing what He was going to endure was not in vain. In your prayer, beg God for the vision to help you press into the time of trial and not run from that cross.

That is the prayer that will be answered. Suffering always has redemptive value. But when we surrender to the perfect will of God, the pain of the suffering is lessened, and we are able to drink the chalice and go on.

This is the grace Jesus received from the angel. His surrender to the will of the Father strengthened Him to say yes every step of the way. It is the same for us. We have to say yes every step during our way of the cross, no matter how hard, how difficult or how many times we may fall. It is YES LORD, YES LORD, YES, YES, YES!!! This is when the grace comes, this is when the healing comes. With every crucifixion there is a resurrection and triumph.

Our Lady concludes her message with her blessing. Here is our consolation and hope. Remember the movie the The Passion of the Christ? Focus on this movie if you watch it again. Notice every time Jesus fell, and where was Our Lady in the scene? He looked at her, and he found strength to go forward. We are in Lent in this time. Our Mother is with us, as Jesus is becoming more incarnate in us. She is here to encourage us, to love us, and to help us gain strength for the sake of our salvation, and win the victory.

With her blessing, contains a tremendous gift and grace from God. Our Mother comes every day to bless the world. Every day you are getting blessed and you do not even know it.

Take it to prayer sometime and ask what this blessing really means and how often we take it for granted when we get blessed. Something happens to our souls in this blessing my friends. We should stop every day, and welcome her and her blessing in our hearts, to receive it with love and in fullness of the gift she is bringing us from heaven. It is a blessing she has obtained from the Father and the Son, fully packed with the Holy Spirit.

Let us all continue on with open hearts to her maternal love. And please thank God every day for this great gift that we are able to grow up with her, just like Jesus did in Nazareth.

There is a great mystery in this gift of our Nazareth years with the Mother of God. But remember, it came a time when Jesus was ready for his public mission and made His way to the Cross. We do not know how long the Father will permit her to be with us, but many of us feel the days are numbered my friends. Continue on and work all the more harder on the conversion of heart, so we are ready for the day that comes.

Ave Maria!

“For though we live in the world we are not carrying on a worldly war, for the weapons of our warfare are not worldly; but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguements and every proud obstacles to the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience when your obedience is complete!” (2 Corinthians 10:3-6)

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Santa Cruz Media Statement for Fr. John Corapi

Keep praying for priests!

Statement of Santa Cruz Media, Inc. Relative to Fr. Corapi’s Suspension

Santa Cruz Media, Inc. is the owner of all of Fr. John Corapi’s intellectual property and the DVDs, CDs, and books that flow from it. We are a secular corporation and not affiliated with the Catholic Church in any way. As such, we are not under the jurisdiction of any bishop or other official in the Catholic Church, although we have the utmost respect for Church authority.

We fully support Rev. John Corapi in this terrible trial, not surprisingly having begun on Ash Wednesday. Through the sacrifice and struggle of the desert and all of the dark moments that this entails, we are confident that the glory of the risen Lord will shine forth from the power of the Resurrection and Easter.

We have consulted with a number of canon lawyers. They have assured us that the actions of the Bishop of Corpus Christi, Texas are, on several points of canon law, illicit. It is our fervent hope that The Dallas Charter will be changed because of false accusations like this. There is no evidence at this time that Fr. Corapi did anything wrong, only the unsubstantiated rant of a former employee, who, after losing her job with this office, physically assaulted me and another employee and promised to “destroy” Father Corapi. We all continue to pray for this person, and we ask you to do the same.

We sincerely believe that the work Fr. Corapi has done is of greatest value to the Church, hence hated by the devil. We fully intend to make Fr. Corapi’s material available as a service to the Church and the world for as long as we possibly can.

The Church provides no financial support to Fr. Corapi. He has to pay for his own legal representation, medical costs, food, housing, etc. We have never accepted donations or charitable contributions of any kind. We are supporting Father’s efforts to defend himself. Your purchase of products from Santa Cruz Media helps provide the funding for Father’s continued work as well as the legal expenses he continues to incur as a result of these malicious allegations.

Father Corapi and all of us here at Santa Cruz Media, Inc. greatly appreciate your kindness, support, and prayers. Please continue to pray for Father Corapi and his accuser, as well as all priests who find themselves in this unfortunate situation.

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Bobbi Ruffatto
Vice President of Operations
Santa Cruz Media, Inc