Friday, August 27, 2010


Who is Susan Tassone? In an article by Larry and Mary Sue Eck of Medjugorje Magazine, Susan is called, "the Champion of the Holy Souls." Medjugorje Magazine states that when Susan starts to talk about the souls in Purgatory, she doesn't take a breath; and after 10 minutes you realize that she has the energy of ten locomotives. Shortly before his death, Father Stephen Barham chuckling said of her, "Susan Tassone wears you out talking about the Holy Souls, but you keep coming back for more. Her excitement is contagious."

Three months after returning from her first pilgrimage to Medjugorje Susan founded "The Holy Souls Mass Apostolate" in 1993. Excited by the idea of having Masses said for the holy souls in purgatory, Susan started collecting money. Hundreds of thousands of dollars later, missionaries have greatly benefited by the money raised through Mass stipends.

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago invited Susan to review the success of her "Holy Souls Mass Apostolate." On All Souls Day 1998, she delivered the opening address preceding the Cardinal's Mass.

Cardinal George wrote his own recommendation printed on the back of Susan's highly successful book, "Way of the Cross for the Holy Souls in Purgatory." Cardinal George writes, '…What better way to pray for the departed than by meditation on the final hours of the earthly life of Jesus. The Way of the Holy Cross for the Holy Souls in Purgatory is a beautiful guide for this important devotion.'

In April of 1999, Pope John Paul II gave his Apostolic Blessing to Susan's "Holy Souls Mass Apostolate." Susan has had two private audiences with John Paul II. In one audience Pope John Paul II held up Susan's book and loudly exclaimed, "Very good!"

Susan has a strong devotion for Our Lady since age seven. Many of her friends had visited Medjugorje and Susan wanted to go too. She says her reason for going is, "Our Lady is my best friend and when you hear your best friend is in town, you visit her!" However, Susan was uncertain if she could make such a long journey due to a previous auto accident. While crossing a road in Chicago, Susan was hit by a taxi causing severe nerve and leg damage; so she decided to consult her doctor before going to Medjugorje. He agreed to let her go.

In Medjugorje the chain on her rosary turned a golden color. She witnessed a brilliant light like the Star of David. In a blue aura she saw the outline of Our Lady. Despite the blessings she received in Medjugorje her leg swelled to twice its size.

During her second pilgrimage with a group from the Chicago Marian Center, Susan knew this time, climbing the mountain was out of the question. However, a small boy on the pilgrimage begged Susan to go up the mountain till she finally agreed. The climb and descent was easier than she expected, feeling quite light in step.

Susan noticed the visible damage on her leg was gone after having returned home to Chicago. She called her doctor and he immediately requested that she come to his office. Upon examination he walked out of the room and then walked back in saying, "Dear, this is a miracle. You're blessed. If any doctor saw your leg now he'd never believe what happened to you." Susan asked if the Doctor would put this in writing. "Let's wait," he said. Three years later Susan Tassone took that letter to Medjugorje. Susan tells me, Father Slavko interviewed her for GLAS MIR Magazine. It was one of the last interviews Father Slavko did before his death. Her healing is officially recorded in their documents. Father Philip Pavich (former Medjugorje priest now back in the U.S.) told her, "You were given an extension to your life and there is a mission for you."

As the Webmaster of Medjugorje USA I offer my comment: After having spent some time over the past few months talking with Susan Tassone and having viewed her two videotapes, "The Holy Souls" and "Susan Tassone Live For The Holy Souls," there is no question she is an Apostle for "Holy Souls in Purgatory." This is undoubtedly her "mission" to which Father Philip Pavich stated, "You have been given an extension to your life." Her damaged leg, which was of little use, has been replaced by a new extension, which grows stronger every day in the name of "The Holy Souls in Purgatory."

Susan recently told me, "Remember the words of the holy souls: "May those be blessed may those be rewarded who relieve us of these pains." When Susan first contacted me having visited the website, she was happy to see the Medjugorje USA Prayer Oblation Warriors (POW) Prayer Group. She has told me several times that each member will be rewarded by the holy souls in purgatory whom we pray for. As of August 2001, there are 79 members. I hope more of you will join the POW prayer group and offer a few minutes each day for the holy souls in purgatory.
A link will be provided at the bottom of this page for those who would like to visit or join the Medjugorje USA POW Prayer Group.

The Interview with Susan Tassone

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Thoughts on Medjugorje After my Pilgrimage -Goodness, Truth, and Beauty

(Here is an email that DAN O'CONNOR sent out to a group of his Catholic friends regarding a pilgrimage to Medjugorje that he went on from July 28th to August 6th, 2010)

I go by Dan. I am a 23 year old mechanical engineering graduate of RPI. I live and breath to serve the True King, Jesus Christ, and in that regard I am unabashedly devoted, without reservation or qualification, to the Catholic Church. I love my family and friends, my country, and when I am given the strength to, my enemies. Despite the opposition of my beliefs to the Godless philosophy of modern days; I do love all the people I meet, and greatly enjoy my life on this world.
My Website:
Hello Good People,

Many of you are aware I recently returned from a trip to Medjugorje. I know that among good, orthodox, devout Catholics there are varying opinions on this place, so I want to let you in on my own thinking. Whatever you decide, let us not allow any division to occur from this; we have too much in common with each other; things that we share with so few in today’s world!

First I must touch on why I went there; it was not my plan. I vaguely intended on getting there eventually, but only at least after Rome, the Holy Land, and Ireland. God made this trip happen. First I was inspired by one of the most orthodox, holy, zealous, on fire priests I have ever met to look more into it a few Sundays ago. The next day I simply typed in “Medjugorje Pilgrimage” into Google, not expecting anything. Lo and behold the first result directed me to a pilgirmage leaving in a few days that perfectly filled the amount of time I had left until my new job started. Still certain nothing would happen (since these things are organized months in advance) I filled out an inquiry form online which surprisingly got me a response within minutes. He assumed I was looking to book next year’s pilgrimage, and when I informed him otherwise he told me that though this was the last possible minute, I would get there if Jesus and Mary wanted me there. Soon after he responded saying that it was a miracle, but there was one spot left on all the flights and one room left in the house. My time there corresponded with the “Youth Festival,” by far the most crowded time of the year at Medjugorje (I heard my tour guide there speaking about how impossible it was that there was a spot for me). Astonished I started looking for my passport; unable to find it anywhere for hours I finally prayed “God, if you want me on this trip, enlighten my mind as to the location of my passport. If you do not want me to go, do not let me find it in time.” It was in the very next spot I looked. You can see that for me to forego this trip would have been an abandonment of God’s will. CLICK ON LINK TO READ ENTIRE TESTIMONY ---& TO VIEW WONDERFUL VIDEO HE TOOK

How to Reduce Your Cancer Risk to Almost Zero

How to Reduce Your Cancer Risk to Almost Zero


No researcher in history has done more research on the relationship of diet to disease than Dr. T. Colin Campbell, PhD, of Cornell University in New York State. Following are a few excerpts from Dr. Campbell’s book, The China Study, a book I recommend highly to all who are interested in learning the science supporting the relationship of diet to cancer as well as most other diseases.

“What made the project especially remarkable is that, among the many associations that are relevant to diet and disease, so many pointed to the same findings: People who ate the most animal-based foods got the most chronic disease. Even relatively small intakes of animal based food were associated with adverse effects. People who ate the most plant-based foods were the healthiest and tended to avoid chronic disease.” (Page 7)

“At the end of the day, the strength and consistency of the majority of the evidence is enough to draw valid conclusions. Namely, whole plant-based foods are beneficial, and animal based foods are not.”

The Truths of Medjugorje-the cross is always present

It is common knowledge that the devil hates Medjugorje.  Be careful of those who attack Medjugorje and all the 'good fruit' especially when they have these other personality traits of pride, envy and malice. 


THE UNPERSUADED by Fr. Geroge Rutler

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Medjugorje and Fr. Mark Bozada
After Years of a Hidden Life, Fr. Mark Bozada’s
Spiritual Gifts Reveal a Mystic Loyal to the Church--
What a blessing the Church has been given in Fr. Mark Bozada! Michael Brown from Spiritdaily has written an excellent article on our most beloved “unknown” courageous priest. I have been fortunate enough to know Fr. Mark for the past seven years and consider him one of the biggest blessings in my life.
Why all the reports of spiritual phenomena? How come: the sudden, overwhelming public interest in spirits, ghosts, and apparitions? Why, in the Christian and non-Christian worlds, are there so many claims of the supernatural?
Angels. The deceased. And, yes, demons.
The reason, according to a gifted priest from St. Louis named Father Mark Bozada, is that the “veil” is “thinning.”
Father is Godfather -above picture-----

As we approach special times, the supernatural, he says, is being made more manifest.
Fr. Mark Bozada”In my own prayer I have been shown that the preternatural gifts lost in the Garden are being partly restored and part of the grace is having the veil lifted,” explains Father Bozada, who ministers at three parishes. “It is predicated, however, on obedience to God’s Will, so as not interrupted by the evil one. The two ways we support that is to remain obedient to the Church community and Magisterium. The perfection of the Holy Spirit is revealed through the Church.”
That admonishment comes at a time when many have strayed into questionable aspects of spirituality, and yet it also comes at a time when seers can face hyper-skepticism (and even persecution). The Church, says Father Bozada, acts as “mothers do at a ball field”: making sure the kids stay within the boundaries (and recovering the ball when it’s kicked astray). “The devil perverts gifts,” says Father Bozada, who served as a consultant for an A & E program on spirit infestation. “That’s what he does best.”
The thinning veil, says this priest, “is because we’re moving into the era of peace and the Lord is preparing us to live in a different way. Many saints in the past have foreseen this rebirth of the Church and mankind.”

Much is about to change. We see the purification all around us.

Father Bozada is well-qualified to speak on the mystical because he is “supersensory” and has had the experience of sensing and even seeing spirits since he was five or six. The gift developed as he encountered the demonic — including the smell of sulfur as a boy — and learned to pray harder. That’s the negative side. He also experiences — and sees — angels and poor souls doing their purgatory on earth — something that was also associated with St. Padre Pio.
“My mother told me never to be afraid because the Blessed Mother was there to protect me,” says this special priest, who was ordained in 1981. “The first time I encountered an angel was when I was six or seven. I was at our community swimming pool and started drowning — in water over my head. I heard a voice say, ‘I will help you.’ The voice said to push off the bottom of the pool and then again and kept coaching me until I got to the side of the pool.
“I always had a sense of the presence because we were always told to pray for poor souls. My mother always said never to be afraid of souls but pray for them (if you catch them out of the corner of your eye). But it wasn’t until Medjugorje in 1989 that I could distinguish dark purgatorial souls from demons.”
While sometimes the priest sees them through his physical eyes, most often, allegedly, Father Bozada sees spirits in interior visions (as if through “the mirrors on a reflector telescope”). The darker a soul, he says, the lower is its purgatory — and the more difficult to identify. He says souls can seem like mere outlines in gray and shadows.
Souls higher up in purgatory become recognizable and exhibit features. “I can see the faces of the ones closer to the upper levels of purgatory,” he asserts, for our considered judgment.
“Sometimes souls do get ’stuck,’” he adds. “I did a house blessing in Kansas City. The home had a presence of children and it turned out that it was part of the ‘trail of tears’ — Indian children where tribes went to reservations and passed through Missouri long ago.”
This all sounds like “fringe” stuff until one meets this otherwise “down-to-earth,” no-nonsense, orthodox priest.
“A lot of it has to do with intimacy,” he counsels. “The gifts are contingent on how intimate we are with God. The farthest back I remember when I was about four and I saw the Face of Jesus and felt this intense love.”
He sees earthbound spirits virtually every day — especially in busy places like hotels, malls, or airports, he claims. For this reason, Father Bozada usually travels with the Blessed Sacrament. He says that souls not only attach to places but also specific people — looking for help or remaining near relatives.
And for that reason he believes that freeing such souls often cause healings — emotional and physical — in families, that spirits attach to our lineages. He sees more of these souls that demonic ones.
“If there’s a place infested, I would know the difference,” he says. “The poor souls come like beggars. The demons come raging. A demon that is present makes you feel like you’re falling into a dark hole — cold and menacing and intense fear.”
The most intense demonic activity, says Father Bozada, is often linked to places where there has been occult activity, prostitution, or the use of drugs. Although he doesn’t like to specify locales — and notes that every city has its positives and negatives — he has felt special evil in two places many would expect: Las Vegas and parts of Manhattan.
As for the poor souls: they should be held up, in a special manner, during the Consecration. Small Masses for them, he says, are especially intense.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The danger of bad friends :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

The danger of bad friends :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)
Toxic friends can drain your energy, sap your self-confidence, erode your morals, and even cause you to question your own sanity. They range from needy dependent types to narcissists (See my Catholic Match article ' It's All About ME ') and even bona fide sociopaths. Not the serial killer kind, mind you, but the average, garden-variety sociopath. Clinical psychologist Martha Stout, former Harvard Medical School professor and author of The Sociopath Next Door , tells us that one in twenty-five Americans are sociopaths who simply do not feel shame, guilt or remorse. Not all sociopaths are violent criminals--they may be your boss, your ex-boyfriend, even your best friend.

According to Stout, sociopaths are often charismatic, using flattery, seductive yet false (or sham) emotion, lies or deception luring us into their intrigues, sucking us into pitying them or otherwise giving into their demands, causing us to question our own good reason, and using our good nature and generosity for their own selfish purposes.
When things go wrong, the narcissist blames everyone else. He doesn’t stop to think: What part have I played in this fiasco? Perhaps I should have been more understanding. Am I sincere with God and with others?
The narcissist follows a unique script in which he is the perfect protagonist who can do no wrong. Your purpose in life is to serve him. He is condescending, arrogant, and uses others to achieve his own ends. His relationships never work out, because he undermines them all. And it is never, ever his fault.

He avoids any real introspection, because deep down, he fears that he is worthless. Instead, he covers this feeling of shame or worthlessness with a grandiose self-image, a false self that he projects onto reality. At all times, he must feed this grandiose self-image, so he spends a lot of time talking about himself, putting other people down, and constantly seeking admiration and flattery.
As a result, there is little time or energy available to actually listen to somebody else . A narcissist rarely expresses any true interest in, or sensitivity toward, anyone other than himself. A narcissist lacks empathy.

If you have ever been in a relationship where your feelings don’t count; where you always feel just slightly off-kilter; where you feel belittled or continually disparaged; where you never know when the next outburst of anger or rage will come, and you are kept continually on edge; where you are expected to reassure or flatter him or her; and where your own feelings seem never to count…then you might be in a relationship with a narcissist.
If you are caught in a narcissist’s web, you feel as though you have been sucked into a black hole or an alternate universe. At first, the narcissist is rather charming. However, his charm eventually wears thin. You begin to doubt your own abilities and qualities, because the narcissist convinces you (when you are in his world) that you are nothing compared to him. You fear his anger if you do not continually feed his need for admiration and praise. Though reality may not match up to the grandiose image of the narcissist, he confidently assures you of his own eminence and authority while keeping you in a state of subjugation. You may begin to doubt your own sanity.

Yet, though there are surprisingly few true narcissists [2] , there are many who have a narcissistic “style.” In our society, we value self-confidence and assertiveness. Yet, when self-confidence becomes arrogant or exploitative, we have a problem.
“All people have personality styles, but when their ‘personality’ prevents them from maintaining employment and/or long-term relationships their style of relating becomes a disorder.” says Dr. Lisa Klewicki, a Catholic psychologist in private practice in Northern Virginia.

Dr. Klewicki tells us that she is seeing more and more narcissism in her practice. “With an ‘instant anything’ society in which one's own needs can be immediately met in some way or another, usually at the detriment of someone else, people begin to believe that their needs are more important than anyone else. Thus, narcissism is on the rise, especially in places where people feel tend to feel more entitled to having everything their own way at all cost.” [3]

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A GREATER VISION -- Joan Ulicny, a Convert

A GREATER VISION  --  Joan Ulicny, a Convert

Joan made her pilgrimage to Medjugorje despite the war, even though she had been advised not to come. She has visited Our Lady, our Mother, already six times. This girl has deep blue eyes that have turned away from the natural light, and on her face is a constant smile. Tall, nicely built, with a pleasant voice, she tells her life story, which has received all its beauty in Medjugorje.
Joan, tell us something about yourself........
I was born 36 years ago in Pittsburgh, in the American state of Pennsylvania. My mother is Croatian from Zagreb (surname at birth Zortic), and my father is Czech. I did not learn Croatian, nor do I know Czech. Now I would like so much to know Croatian. I finished college and got a job with the well-known computer
company IBM. I was successful at work so that, after only two years, an opportunity for advancement opened up, which is not very common at IBM, but rather rare. With two years of experience, I became a manager, something that is usually waited for 10 to 15 years.

Joan, what happened?
You use a stick to help you determine the distance of things from yourself and which helps you determine the direction of movement; but looking into your eyes, one finds oneself confronted with depth, width and light and one feels deep joy...In 1986, four years after my employment, I had a serious car accident. I was on my way to work, driving my small car according to regulations, when I was practically crushed by a giant truck. I was taken to the nearest hospital, completely broken. Iwas losing myself more and more, my breathing was not right.
Then I was transferred to a trauma clinic. I fell into a coma...A few days later, the doctors discovered that my neck arteries, which supply the blood to the brain, were damaged. All four were damaged. Very little oxygen was getting to the brain. The left side; of my body was not functioning. I became a very interesting case for the doctors---with arteries so damaged, it was not possible to be alive, yet I was alive. Helpless with my situation, the doctors advised my parents to pray. My parents knew a priest from my parish. He came to give me the last anointment since I was in a deep coma. With him came another priest and a nun. When they finished praying, the nun put her hands on my face and said a prayer to Our Lady. At that moment, I opened my eyes.

What happened next?........................
The doctors and the clinic staff were surprised. One nurse ran to my mother and said: "You have to see Joan!" I started to come out of the coma and everything was slowly getting better. I did not remember the accident, I did not even remember my job only little, and very faintly. I couldn't walk, I was in a wheelchair. But the hardest was when I realized that I had lost my sight. I was not totally blind, but I was not able to recognize people. The doctor told me that my eyes were actually all right, but that the center for sight was
damaged due to lack of oxygen... and that I would never be able to see again... to return to work...I cried until it seemed that there was no more water in me for all the tears. I was irritable and angry with people and with God. I asked the priest how a loving God could create blindness. Not even he could give me an answer. He also left. I was left all alone in total desertion, without God and without human compassion.

How did you come to Medjugorje?........................
In my agony, I heard about the apparitions in Medjugorje. They told me that miracles happen in that village and I wanted to come and be healed. I came with my mother in 1988. I spent the whole time here crying and asking God: "Why, Lord, why can I not see?" I told Him: "I don't care about a broken leg, I don't care about not having the use of my arm and I don't care if I can't speak clearly... I want to see!" Then it seemed to me
that I got an answer, as if God told me: "Why do you limit me?" That convinced me that I could be healed completely... Two things happened during the time of my pilgrimage. I went with my mother to the apparition site on the hill. There on the hill, I met the priest and the nun whose prayers, through the grace of God, had brought me back to life. The nun told me: "Joan, I would like to get a picture of you on this hill. Put your hand on the cross, which stands on the place where Our Lady appeared." I complied and moved to the cross. And when I touched the cross with my hand, I said: "God, forgive the man who did this to me." My mother said in surprise: "Joan, where did that come from?" I told her: "I don't know mother, but I felt that I could not come to this hill and ask Our Lady to heal me while carrying hatred in my heart for the man who caused the accident." And I received great mercy: I started to pray for the man who did this to me; I have never seen that man, never met him, but I prayed for him. Our Lady inspired me to do this.

And what was the other thing that happened?....................
I visited one of the visionaries of Medjugorje. With the help of a translator, I told him what had happened to me and, crying, I told him that I did not know how to be blind and did not know how to be dependant. This was all very hard for me. Why did God pick me? From the visionary, I heard the words: "Pray and fast; God
gave you this cross, because only you can give something that is very important to yourself. Take the cross with love, pray and believe that God is here in deeds..." When I returned home, I noticed that my life had completely changed. I started to pray the rosary for the first time in my life, even though I had been raised in the Catholic spirit. The sacraments confused me; I could not differentiate between the joyous and the sorrowful ones. I did not know anything. I joined a prayer group and worked hard to learn to pray. I was still struggling a lot because of my limitations, because of my blindness. I cried, but that was no longer a desperate cry, but something else. The words remained in my heart: "God gave you this cross because He loves you and because He wants something from you!" I was thinking and wondering what it was that I could give to God. And I found the answer: my story, my life, what happened to me, the accident. I will write it down.

How will you give your story to God?......................
I will accept it with love and I will present it with love for all those who suffer. After that thought, God gave me the title of the book I was to write -A Greater Vision! I spoke to my parents about it and they agreed. They were glad; it was a relief not to have me always complaining about my fate. Joy returned to our house. Peace set in!

What exactly does Greater Vision mean?
I discovered that, although physically I had my eyes, I was spiritually blind. I did not see anything in my life correctly. When I lost my eyesight, I gained spiritual sight. And that is better. With it, you see things better and you recognize the purpose of things and the meaning of life. That is how, for example, I discovered the value of prayer, of love, of forgiveness, and I realized that I had all the wrong beliefs. I became aware of my earlier belief that I do not need God, as I can do everything I need to do by myself.

That realization happened after the second pilgrimage?..........
Yes. I came in October 1988 and brought my father. I wanted him to convert also. That time, I cried less and prayed more, I received special graces and the conviction that, when I finish the book, I will be able to see... Nobody could do what Our Lady ." has done for me. She brought me to peace, to forgiveness, She
showed me the way, She showed me that God is needed and I am very grateful to Her.

What is happening with the book?.......................
Something extraordinary. I sent the script to two publishers. They both immediately responded and said that it was a beautiful, instructive and touching story, but that it was not complete and that it needed to be finished. I did not know what to do. I thought that maybe I had to wait for a miracle with my eyes...
On the feast day of the Rosary, October 7, 1990, I devoted myself to Our Lady after 33 days of preparation in prayer, and then I realized what else I had to write. Actually, something awful had happened in my life
before. I had an abortion. When I found out that I was pregnant, I had the job offer from IBM and I was justifying to myself that I was not ready for motherhood, that I could not lose the job. Even though I knew it was wrong -I decided to have an abortion. I thought that I had the right to do that, since it was happening in my body, and it was my decision alone. But now I know that was wrong! I got the job, I worked, I tried to forget the abortion, but that is not possible. A mother cannot forget, nor does God forget. The thought of writing about it terrified me, because it meant I had to tell my parents, I had to admit to the world what I had done... I wrote all about it in my conversion.

What is your conclusion?.....................
Abortion is a sin. We do not have the right to choose life or death, not ours and not that of others. Only God is the ruler of life. My decision was like that of the devil: I shall not serve, I shall kill'. God, not now, not like this, I decide. That is arrogance.
Could the accident have been punishment for this?
At first, that is what I thought. And it was very hard. But now I know that it was not punishment, but my cleansing. God always wants the best for us, even when we are evil. God uses the cross to cleanse me, to cleanse my thoughts, my heart and my actions. Now I know that God has already turned everything to
goodness. Before, I put God on the side, my career was more important than life. Now I know what suffering is and what peace is, even though I went through so much pain, learning to speak and to walk again. But everything is all right. I know and I am convinced that God will use what I have come to realize for the
good of others. When we sin, forgiveness alone is not enough; healing is also needed.

Do you want to say something more about abortion andmothers?......................
I know that a lot of other women do what I had done. And onlyin Medjugorje, did I come for a confession. God has forgiven me, and healed me as well. That is my Greater Vision. If God has forgiven me and healed me, I want the same to happen to all women -that they convert and that they confess. I want to say to them all: abortion is not a solution. I want to say to married and single women alike: accept the child, God wanted that child, love it because God loves it, take care of it, because God wants you to. Do not fall into the temptation and belief that abortion is your decision and your right. I invite everyone to whom this has happened: come to Our Lord, He is good and merciful; He will turn everything to the good. Do not be afraid of suffering. We cannot be better than our teacher; that is my message to everyone. Our Lady has suffered and She is close to all who are suffering. Suffering is a gift.

This is your sixth time in Medjugorje; tell us why you came again?....................
I came to pray. I am not afraid of the war. I came during Lent to pray quietly. And I came to give thanks. At first, the doctors thought I would die, then that I will not be able to walk, then that I won't be able to talk and that I won't be able to see. But actually everything is different. I believe that I will be able to see. God saved me to be a witness. This is no longer my life, but His. The old Joan has died and the new one belongs to God. Without the accident, I never would have done anything for God. This is a blessing and a Greater Vision for me. For all those who suffer, I wish that the suffering serves them to see, to devote themselves to God, and He will turn everything to the good.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Why Humility Opens Doors

Why Humility Opens Doors - CATHOLIC EXCAHNGE
Nice guys finish last,” says the world. “The last will be first,” replies Jesus.
My guess is that the Lord of creation knows best who really wins in the end. And he says in this Sunday’s gospel, “whoever exalts himself will be humbled and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted” (Luke 14:11)
To understand why the humble get ahead and why the meek shall inherit the earth, we need to be sure that we understand what humility and meekness really are.
Humility does not mean looking down on oneself or thinking ill of oneself. It really means not thinking of oneself very much at all.

The humble are free to forget themselves because they are secure. They accept the fact that, as creatures, they are small, vulnerable, and not ultimately in control. But they know there is a Creator who is great, omnipotent, and totally in control. And they know that they’ve been made in the image and likeness of that Creator. That makes gives them a dignity that they don’t have to earn and can never be taken away. Though they’ve tarnished the divine likeness through sin, they know that the Creator came down from the heights of heaven to become human and fix what they couldn’t fix.

“An attentive ear is a wise man’s joy” (Sirarch 3:28). The humble are able to truly listen to another with genuine interest and delight in the other’s goodness. The humble are the people who give you their undivided attention and make you feel special and appreciated. You love to have them around. You love to work hard for them. You cheer when they are honored.

The proud, on the other hand, are so self-absorbed that their conversations become monologues. When you are speaking, they are not listening. They are just thinking about what they are going to say next. Eventually you smile, yawn, and do your best to get away from them.
In theology too, humility is essential. Here, as in science, there are many things we know by faith and are certain about, things which God himself has revealed. But many other things are mysterious to us and we dare not ever think we have God or even the mystery of our own life fully figured out. God is “Other” and cannot be reduced to our thoughts or words. And thus we speak with clarity about what has certainly been revealed. But we also reverence the mystery of what is beyond our understanding with humility. To hand on what has been revealed intact and to insist upon it is not the arrogance that some claim. Rather it is the humility of accepting what God has revealed intact without selectively choosing what merely appeals to us. But even as we speak of what we surely know by God’s revelation, we are always humbly aware of what we do not know.

In the Book of Proverbs there is an important reminder: Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him. (Prov 26:12)

Medjugorje Testimony of Judy & John

John and Judy - Our Medjugorje Testimony - Done with love for Jesus and Mary
Our miraculous images on photo and we also have images on video, May 25, 1990...

John and I were married in a civil ceremony in 1984. John was not Catholic, and I was a fallen away and why we ended up in Medjugorje was truly an invitation from the Blessed Mother....April 1989 was a very difficult time in my life, my mother died and the circumstances surrounding that were awfully painful...I couldn't seem to shake off the 'blues' and so John suggested going to church and I hadn't thought of that at all. The only church I knew was the Catholic church and John didn't really care, as long as I didn't ask him to become a Catholic. We started going to Sunday Mass occasionally in September 1989. I did not receive Holy Communion. I was obedient to the Catholic faith that I was taught. I was never a 'cafeteria Catholic.'

Around late November 1989, I heard about Medjugorje from my friend who had read an article in her local home town newspaper. It was just a matter of fact statement from my friend, but I was 'transported' back in time to 3rd grade where I had been placed in the middle of the school year in Catholic school from public school. The change in schools happened because my younger sister had been diagnosed with Leukemia. My mother made a marriage vow to raise her children Catholic and she wasn't doing it. I think she thought if she corrected that vow now that perhaps God would let my sister live, but she died. I was only a few weeks in 3rd grade Catholic school when the nun told us a story about Bernadette and Lourdes in 1858 and I was completely enthralled. This really seemed marvelous to me. I remember after the story was over that I wanted to go there desperately. I was so excited. I started thinking about how I could get there and I looked out the window and thought, well, I know my mother wouldn't take me there, much less believe the story (she was not Catholic) and I felt that the Blessed Mother wouldn't appear to me because she only chose one girl and I didn't think that I was as good as Bernadette, and then I said to myself, well, "if that ever happens in my day, I'm going"! That was the last time that I thought about that 'vow' and that schoolday until the moment when I heard that Our Lady was appearing in Medjugorje. I was so excited and felt 'alive' in an entirely new way. I was going! Somehow, someway, I just knew I was going to Medjugorje. My husband and I watched some videos that a priest, Fr. Joseph Milford (Oblates); gave me who was on my mail route and wow, it just confirmed my belief . I just knew right from the start that this was really happening. Then my husband and I read every book we could get our hands on but my husband was not open to going at all. He said he was not going to a communist country. So, I prayed the rosary on my fingers because I didn't even have a rosary. One Sunday after Mass, in January of 1990, John found a flier on a trip to Medjugorje with this church, St. Paul of the Cross.  Then he said we could go! Ah, the power of the rosary! We had four months to prepare and we just knew we had to prepare with prayer and all that Our Lady was asking for. 

My prayer was for God to give John 'more than me' while we were there so we could stay happily married because I was going to go back to the Eucharist and my Catholic faith no matter what (and since I never discussed my religion with John since I hadn't thought about it in many years, he knew nothing of what the Eucharist is). My initial immediate calling when I heard about Medjugorje was to go back to the Eucharist because, you see, that belief never left me. I had just forgotten about all of it....and I had to have Jesus now. I was ready to give up everything to do that. I went to confession after 20 plus years to a new priest of one year in 1989, a Fr. Thomas Euteneur. I started going to daily Mass with John and I received Holy Communion. John and I lived as 'brother and sister' until our wedding day in the Catholic church.

finally found the holy water fountain in a photo,
 today, Sept. 2011! (far right of photo.)
We arrived in Medjugorje on the bus after midnight on May 25, 1990 and ended up parked on the street in front of St. James Church. Our group had spent a few days in Austria and I was so very sick with the flu and fever. While we were waiting to figure out where we were staying, our new friend, Jim suggested that the 3 of us walk over to the church. We did and as we were walking, I said to them with a little humor and a sense of hope, "well, if I drink this holy water and get well, then Our Lady is really appearing here". I already believed She was appearing here, I just didn't know that 'miracles' were up for the asking! It was dark, the church was closed and yet there was a fountain somewhere around the statue of Our Lady outside and I drank from the holy water. And I got well immediately. I also was not tired at all the next morning with only a few hours of sleep and that has never happened in my life.

That first morning in Medjugorje; May 25, 1990, we went to the 10 am English Mass and afterwards, the priest, Fr. Pavich, blessed all the articles and John decided to hold up his camcorder and looked at me to see what I thought...I thought right away, why not, it was like a little kid asking... I never thought about blessing a camcorder but what did I it was I raised up my new camera and had it blessed also.

Our first full day there was May 25, 1990. We climbed Apparition Hill after Mass and as I got to the top and looked to my right, (where Our Lady appeared) I felt this 'breeze' engulf me and I just knew it was something special. I felt incredibly loved in a way I had never felt before. Later on, I realized it had to be the Holy Spirit 'wind'.  Our Lady said: "The wind is my sign. I will come in the wind. When the wind blows, know that I am with you. You have learned that the cross represents Christ; it is a sign of Him. It is the same for the crucifix you have in your home. For me, it is not the same. When it is cold, you come to church; you want to offer everything to God. I am, then, with you. I am with you in the wind. Do not be afraid." February 15, 1984

At 3 pm that afternoon, Fr. Jozo was giving a talk in the church and we went. The church was packed. And then this happened...John saw Jesus just like we see one another, full face complete, on the altar that afternoon as Fr. Jozo was giving his afternoon talk at 3 pm. Fr. Jozo said "And Jesus stands before you" and then John saw Jesus through his video camcorder ONLY. When John looked with his eyes, there was nothing, John only saw Jesus through the blessed camcorder.....I was not next to him in the church but he passed the camcorder down to me with this message but I knew then, that this was God answering my prayer, to 'give him more than me' which actually was much more for me! The video camcorder went right back to him as I said 'this is just for him', but we were left with an image in the video and on a photo. Our friend, Jim, from the group was taking pictures right behind John so it was perfect when we all shared our pics later....anyway, Fr. Jozo then says and "Mary stands before you" and that is when the Blessed Mother must have 'popped' in the picture but we didn't see Her till we got home when we shared our photos and video with the rest of our pilgrimage group. All of us saw Jesus and Mary's IMAGE while John saw Jesus as a real live person that day and still - TO THIS DAY - sees Jesus and Mary completely full faced clearly the same as he did that day in Medjugorje when he looks at this picture or our video.....we were blessed with the images and people see them today makes a dynamic picture blown up with the rosary in Fr. Jozo's hand and Jesus and Mary's images...ALSO, LOOK AT THE 'FIRE LIGHT' (Holy Spirit) COMING FROM THE LEFT OF THE PHOTO WHICH STREAMS RIGHT TO FR. JOZO AND THE ROSARY AND TO THE TABERNACLE!...

OK....look at the bouquet of flowers on the altar....look at the tall Lily and the stick of thorn to the left of the lily, and you will see in between those two , image of Jesus crucified look to the right of the lily and you will see the Blessed Mother's face slightly leaning towards Her Son and on the video you can see HER gold crown and you can see it in the photo that evening, our priest said we should meet and share our day with one another....well, I was so overwhelmed and just in awe about this since we could see the image of Jesus in the camcorder that I stayed in my room while John, very excited; the only non-Catholic went down and testified to what he saw and the image that was left and stated to the group that HE NOW KNOWS THAT JESUS IS TRULY PRESENT IN THE EUCHARIST,, he did not know that at all John's testimony was a real blessing for the group and especially for our priest, Fr. Venezia.

Many other things happened to us in Medjugorje that were enlightening and miraculous....I took care of my father in 1980, when he was sick with cancer. He told me that he was so grateful to have me taking care of him that if he could get well, he would take me on a 'trip around the world' and I thought how sweet that was but also unusual, we were poor and a trip around the world is not something I ever thought possible...well, one day in Medjugorje, I realized that my father was with me because I WAS on a 'trip around the world', people from all over the world were here! And they were also here from the supernatural world!....

One day during the apparition that was taking place in the church we saw the sun spin, pulsate at us like a beating heart, throw colors out and at one point there were 3 small clouds with three crosses going through them one at a time - and then at the end, Our Lady, from head to 'toe cloud', appeared in the sky, plain as could be!- so incredible! We were outside praying the rosary because the Mass at that time of day is in Croatian and for the people of the village.

During the Thursday night rosary prayer meeting that Ivan group has on Apparition Hill, Our Lady came that evening and it was so quiet.  A whole group of us were going up the back side of the mountain which leads to the blue cross (where Our Lady first appeared to the children).  This is where Ivan has his apparition on his rosary prayer nights on the hill. It was so dark we could barley see anything but we knew there were huge rocks everywhere.  I stumbled along and found a spot to sit and was leaning up against a rock wall.  John and others were kneeling in front of me and to the side.  I thought about kneeling but the rocks had jagged edges and there didn't seem to be any room.  The next thing I heard was that Out Lady was here and it was quiet before but now it was complete silence.  Then 'someone' punched me directly in the middle of my back and I hit the ground kneeling.  I knew immediately that this was impossible since my back was up against the rock wall.  I thought I had probably cut my legs because the force of the punch was dramatic but I didn't dare move an inch because I  knew it was the 'hand of God'. When the apparition was over we all got up and we walked back down the hill.  My legs were not injured or bleeding at all and I had no pain.  Later on, back home, I found this message from Our Lady - On June 25, 1988, Ivanka, one of the six Medjugorje visionaries, during her apparition, said to those present at the apparition, many of whom were standing up or sitting:  “Our Lady wishes for all present to kneel down.”

Judy at the Blue Cross- 1990

We also could look over at Cross Mountain and see the Cross as plain as day. It was all lit up with supernatural light because there were no lights on either hills in 1990...and there is no way you should be able to see this Cross, too far away and black as night outside. I didn't realize this at first but as I was walking down the mountain, I looked over and of course, saw nothing but night time blackness and this is when it finally registered what happened. There was no electricity on the mountains. Things like this happened to us the entire time we were there and to millions of others! It was as though you were not on the earth but experiencing something supernatural. Even climbing the hill was like being 'lifted' up there. We helped very old people and injured people up the hill and it was almost effortless for them and us.

We came back home and John went to RCIA to learn about Catholicism. He became a Catholic :) and we got married in the Catholic Church one year later on miraculous day, May 25, in 1991. We love daily Mass and Rosary and try to live Our Lady's 5 stones which is daily Mass, daily rosary, monthly confession, fasting, and bible reading.  John became a lecture and we started making the Mother Theresa rosary because I had read the story in the Catholic Digest in 1991. It has become John's exclusive ministry now, making these Mother Theresa rosaries, (over 8,580 to date, 07/07/2010) and to give them away to whomever Blessed Mother puts in our path. Many miraculous stories have come back to us through the years because of this rosary. That's another many miraculous healings physically and spiritually and emotionally but 'believing is the key to the miraculous.'  It is a 'thin veil' from the natural to the supernatural when you pray to God from the heart.

*****Monthly Message, May 25, 1990 "Dear children! I invite you to decide with seriousness to live this novena. (Holy Spirit Novena) Consecrate the time to prayer and to sacrifice. I am with you and I desire to help you to grow in renunciation and mortification, that you may be able to understand the beauty of the life of people who go on giving themselves to me in special way. Dear children, God blesses you day after day and desires a change of your life. Therefore, pray that you may have the strength to change your life. Thank you for having responded to my call. " *****
our testimony is at several sites on line

Faith is a gift from God.  “For the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable” (Romans 11: 29).   Faith is a priceless gift which can be lost through our own personal negligence.  Faith must be nourished with a well developed spiritual life and with the continual study of our Catholic Faith.  Spiritual laziness, culpable ignorance and indifference can weaken our faith and even cause the loss of faith.
     Parents have a solemn duty to pass on the gift of faith to their children. 

Sunday, August 1, 2010

An Outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Fr. Jozo in Medjugorje

This was taken on May 25, 1990 in Medjugorje in St. James Catholic Church during a talk that Fr. Jozo was giving the English speaking pilgrims at 3 pm in the afternoon.

Truly I say to you, all sins shall be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they utter: but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin. (Mark 3:28-29)

This sounds just like the people today who spend years disecting Medjugorje and refuse to believe that Jesus performs the miracles in Medjugorje but believe that satan is responsible for it all---->If we look at the passage from Mark, we shall see that Jesus charged some scribes with blaspheming against the Holy Spirit because they saw people healed of various sicknesses and of insanity, and did not doubt the reality of these cures, but instead of giving God the glory, they accused our Lord of being an agent of Satan: He has an unclean spirit. These miracles were a sign that God was active in the ministry of Jesus: If it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. If they believed that he was bringing wholeness to the minds and bodies of men and women thorugh the power of Satan, then they had closed their eyes to the light. They refused to see that actions which were good were in fact good in themselves, and they refused because they disapproved of the person, Jesus, who was responsible for them. Light had become darkness and good had become evil. They committed a sins, but do not know they are sinning. If they refuse the light, where else can they hope to receive illumination, for, in the words of the psalmist, it is in thy light, Lord, that we see light.

In the Gospel-For St. Mark, then the sin against the Hoy Spirit involves deliberately shutting one's eyes to the light and calling good evil. In Luke it is final apostasy, turning away from God's salvation. The sin against the Holy Spirit is not so much an isolated act but a state of mind. The more we judge through prejudice, the more we we distort our own motives and the motives of other people, the more steadily we enter darkness and the more relentless is the movement towards not being able to tell good from evil.

Medjugorje has now attracted over thirty million pilgrims, the vast majority of whom have had their lives transformed or touched by their encounter with the Queen of Peace (not to speak of the tens of millions of others who have never visited Medjugorje but have been third-party recipients of the graces mediated by the Virgin).

The significance of these two facts will be evident to anyone who has studied the Church's time-tested canons for the discernment of supernatural phenomena.
 The Church's great doctors of the spiritual and the mystical life have said for centuries that an authentic supernatural revelation will bear two marks: it will attract the religious and it will cause conversions. Satan posing as an angel of light can bring about many extraordinary signs and wonders, but the one thing he cannot and will not do is bring about a conversion.
*****Monthly Message, May 25, 1990 "Dear children! I invite you to decide with seriousness to live this novena. (Holy Spirit Novena) Consecrate the time to prayer and to sacrifice. I am with you and I desire to help you to grow in renunciation and mortification, that you may be able to understand the beauty of the life of people who go on giving themselves to me in special way. Dear children, God blesses you day after day and desires a change of your life. Therefore, pray that you may have the strength to change your life. Thank you for having responded to my call. " *****

There is a Life After This Life

Medjugorje Visionary Ivanka Elez Affirms in Testimony That There is a Life After This Life

I would like to welcome you all with the most beautiful greeting, "Praised be Jesus and Mary."And even more, I would like to give you thanks because you are willing to hear the message of Our Lady. I am standing here before you and I am asking God, "Why did you choose me?" I have been asking this same question to myself and, to be honest with you, I do not have an answer. I have accepted this great gift and, at the same time, I accepted this great responsibility. I am asking God to give me the strength to follow the way He has asked me to.

Ivanka has been given a very special task, from Our Lady, to pray for the family. Ivanka stresses the importance of this to pilgrims today, and reminds us that Our Lady invites us to, "...renew family prayer."

In 1981, I lived with my family in Mostar. Every year during the summer and holy days, I spent time in Bijakovici and here in Medjugorje. On the feast of Saint John the Baptist, June 24, 1981, because it was a holy day of obligation, we have a custom not to work on holy days and Sundays. So the only thing we did that day, we went to church. Usually in the afternoon our parents would have a rest and the children were allowed to play. That's what we did. That afternoon I and Mirjana, the visionary, took a walk outside the village. We were waiting for other kids to join us. We were tired of waiting, and we started walking back toward the village, toward our houses. On my way back, I felt this call in my heart; something was calling me to look toward the hill. When I looked toward the hill, I saw the Mother of God. I said to Mirjana, "Mirjana look there is Gospa, Our Lady on the hill." And you see, Mirjana just waved her hand and said, "What foolish things are you telling me about, what Our Lady?", and she took off. I kept quiet as well, and I followed her. When we arrived at the first houses we met Milka, visionary Marija's sister, who was going to gather the sheep. But when Milka saw my face, she asked me immediately, "What happened to you? Look at what you look like." Walking back together with the two girls, I told Milka what I saw. When we came to the same place I was, from where I saw Our Lady, all three of us saw Her. She was maybe four or five hundred meters away from us. She kept waving to us to come to Her. I felt all kinds of emotions, all of them were mixed in my heart, but you see fear conquered all other emotions. In the meantime, Vicka(visionary) came to us, and she noticed that something was going on with the three of us. We told her, "Hurry up, we see Our Lady on the hill." Vicka took off her shoes, and she ran away towards the houses. She met two boys, two Ivans, and she told them what we said we saw. Because she had boys with her, she gained courage and came back with them to us. Even though there were six of us, none of us wanted to get close to Our Lady. To be honest with you, I don't know how long we spent at the base of the hill. I know that some of us went home, but also a couple of us stayed. We were so scared. We were crying. On the way back to the village, we entered the first house. The family of the house we entered in was celebrating the feast of Saint John the Baptist. There were many people having a dinner, and we told them, crying, "We saw Our Lady." I remember there were many apples on the table, and they started throwing them at us. They told us, "Be quiet, do not play with these things. Do not tell anybody what you just told us." So we went back to our homes. When I came home, I told my granny, my brother, my sister, what I saw. Granny told me, "My child this is not possible." She told me, "Probably someone was guarding the sheep on the hill."My brother and my sister were making jokes about me whenever I mentioned Our Lady. I was fifteen at that time. To be honest with you, this was the longest night of my life. I was questioning myself whether the apparitions were possible or not. I was questioning myself whether I was normal, whether I saw what I saw?

But you see the word of what we saw spread so quickly to other villages that people from other villages started coming the next day. I remember my granny held my hand. She told me,"Whatever is up there, you are not going." But we saw the light three times on the hill, you see we got this strength, so we hurried up the hill. We were running so fast that nobody could keep up with us. When we stood before Our Lady, I have to tell you that, my eyes have never seen something more beautiful than She is. She is young, and She looks like She is nineteen or twenty. Our Lady always has a grey dress, white veil, and a crown of stars, blue eyes and black hair. She always floats on a cloud. Earthly words cannot describe the feeling when you see Our Lady, so much love. You feel so secure when you are with Her. At that moment, when I saw Her again, I knew in my heart that was the Blessed Mother. Two months before that day my mother had passed away, and then I asked Her immediately when I saw Her, "Our Lady where is my mom?" She smiled at me and said, "Do not worry, your mom is with Me." She told us not to be afraid of anything, that She was going to be with us all the time. In the meantime, people caught up with us. They came to us, and they realized that something was going on with us. So on the third day, when we were about to leave for the apparition, we were advised by the others to bring with us Holy Water and Blessed Holy Salt. They advised us to bless that image we saw. So when Our Lady came, Vicka blessed Our Lady with Holy Water, and Vicka told Her, "If You come from God stay, but if You do not come from God ,please leave us." Our Lady smiled back to her, and She said, "I am the Queen of Peace." The first message Our Lady gave to us was the message of peace. After that, Our Lady invites us to peace, conversion, fasting, penance, and prayer. So, from the very beginning of Medjugorje, these are the most important messages Our Lady has been giving to all of us. I always say, in a simple way, we have questions, but these are the answers.

From 1981 to 1985, I had the apparitions on a daily basis. Through these years, Our Lady told me all Her life story, a biography. She told me the future of the Church and the world. I wrote everything down, and when Our Lady tells me when and who to give these papers to, I'll do it. On May 7th 1985, I had my last daily apparition. That was the longest apparition I had because Our Lady spent one hour with me. That was the day when I was given the tenth secret, and I was told that I will no longer have the apparitions on a daily basis, but only once a year on June 25th each year. So from 1985 until this year, I have had this annual apparition on the 25th of June. On the day when I received the tenth secret, Our Lady gave a great gift for me, but also a great gift for the world, because all of us ask ourselves is there life after this life. I'm standing here before all of you as a living witness, and I can tell you, there is a life after this life; because on that day in May I was able to see my late mother. I was able to give Her a hug, and my mother told me, "My child I am proud of you."

For 28 years Our Lady has been showing us the way we should take, and we people are those who will make the decision whether we will accept this way or not, and that way is the way of conversion, peace, love, fasting. The six of us visionaries, each has our own separate task, and I was chosen by Our Lady to pray for families. I am inviting all of you to respect the sacrament of Holy Matrimony, to attend Holy Mass every Sunday, and to have at least one confession monthly. Our Lady invites us all to renew the family prayer, so that the Word of God and the Holy Bible is in the center of our lives. Everyday I pray for the families in the world, but at the same time I'm kindly asking all of you to pray for our families. Many pilgrims think that we visionaries are privileged, that we are closer to God than the rest of you. On the contrary, we are the same as you, and it's not enough to see physically, to see with our eyes. The most important thing is to open our hearts and to have Our Lady in our hearts. The only thing we need to do is open our hearts because Our Lady is here with us today, now and we have to make the decision whether we want to let Her in and to open our hearts and accept Her messages. That is why, carry peace in your hearts, and carry peace to your families, to your countries, to your churches. This is the only way we are able to help Our Lady, so that Her plan is realized, that we bring light to this world. In my annual apparition this year, on the 25th of June, Our Lady invited all of us to "…become apostles of peace," and to pray for peace in the world. Let us become the apostles of peace. Thank You.

Medjugorje Visionary Ivanka




A year ago, Jay traded my parents' home for the street. But the more I try to help him, the more I lose myself