Friday, 1 November 2013

Experiences from 2013 Pilgrimage to Medjugorje

Climbing Apparition Hill, one rock at a time, is made easier by the support of all those other pilgrims around.  May the next hill to climb, with your prayer support and that or our Blessed Virgin Mary, be to set up a prayer group in the parish of St. Thomas (Canterbury).  That others may hear Mary’s call and respond to it. (Mary McGillie)

We had a great experience.  There is a special grace of peace here.
I was greatly blessed to see my children fall more in love with Our Lady and Jesus.  The children want us to pray the rosary as a family.  The children loved praying, adoration and daily Mass.  (It is something they will never forget).  The children loved hearing about how Our Lady appearing to the young Croatian children and got to meet a visionary (Vicka).  They listened to the main messages of Our Lady and want to live them.  They went to confession and were full of joy afterwards. (Cathy Fava)

In my first pilgrimage to Medjugorje I received a conversion of mind and heart and was strengthened me in my faith.  I was not expecting to receive anything further from this pilgrimage.  How wrong I was.  I have received further blessings and now feel determined to encourage others to visit Medjugorje and to assist the set up of an RCIA program in my parish. 
For me this is a very big change as I have never been one to evangelize so with God's blessings I will be successful. (Tony Holt)

This trip to Medjugorje was my second, I was so excited to go on this one and I was not disappointed.  I am closer to God and to my prayers.  Please God when our parish receives our new priest I will be able to set up a prayer group.  I am so excited to be able to do this.
The people that were on this trip were lovely people.  Some that I met on my first trip and others that were new.  We all come for different reasons and it is so lovely to be able to share these reasons. I will be going again next year, please God.
God Bless Gwennie. Xx

This was my 16th trip to Medjugorje ... as the bus pulled into the village the guide said “welcome home” and that is exactly what I felt, and feel every time I visit Medjugorje ... home ... where Our Lady is waiting for me and welcoming me. Whilst all around the physicality of Medjugorje  changes Our Lady never changes.  Her love like her welcome and her messages are certain and strong.  I thank God daily for that certainty, strength, and consistency. (Yvonne Fitzpatrick-Grimes)

With my reduced mobility due to surgery climbing mountains was out of the question, but I did visit the foot of apparition hill taking a taxi there and back.  I very carefully got myself up a few paces holding on the rail, and sat on a rock with the statue of Mary by the Blue Cross in view and prayed the Joyful Mysteries aloud. I felt really very happy and joyful to be there again remembering my first visit to Medjugorje (2002) when I had trouble with my right knee.  I took a taxi up and sat a bit nearer in the same area praying the rosary while waiting for those of our group who were walking. I took a photograph (before the digital age) of the Blue Cross and the Statue of Mary before joining our Group.  The developed and enlarged photo shows a shaft of light beaming on to the head of Mary, sparkling ... and a smaller shaft on the head of a man in the crowd moving away. I bought a lot of peace rosaries and want to give them away in my prayer group encouraging them all to pray for peace in our hearts, families and the world.  Tonight I gave the mothers who come to Mothers Prayers a Peace rosary each and we prayed it at the end, which we will do from now on. (Ruth Kamalagharan)

This was my first journey to Medugorje, in celebration for having set up a new group in our parish.  By going to St. James church and the apparition hill, just to be there where Our Blessed Mother had appeared was out of this world.  Equally our visit to hear testimony from Vicka was just awesome.  The first thing on our return was to fly back to Medugorje on wings of prayer. My heartfelt thanks to John and the organisers for this momentous occasion. (Leo Willig)

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Pope Francis at Thursday Mass: the languages of knowing Jesus

(26.9.13 Vatican Radio)To know Jesus, you have to get involved with Him, as pointed out by Pope Francis at Mass this morning in the Casa Santa Marta. The Pope said that Jesus is to be encountered in everyday life. He indicated the three languages needed to know Jesus: that of the mind, that of the heart, and that of action. 

Who is He? where does He come from? In remarks after the readings at Mass on Thursday morning in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae residence in the Vatican, Pope Francis focused on the question that Herod posed about Jesus – a question that all those who encounter Jesus eventually ask. The Pope said that the question is one, which, “one can ask out of curiosity,” or “that one might ask for safety.” He noted that, reading the Gospel, we see that “some people begin to feel afraid of this man, because he could have led them to a political conflict with the Romans.” One wonders, “Who is this man, who makes so many problems?” Because, the Pope said, “Jesus [really does cause trouble]”:
“You cannot know Jesus without having problems. And I dare say, ‘But if you want to have a problem, go to the street to know Jesus – you’ll end up having not one, but many!’ But that is the way to get to know Jesus! You cannot know Jesus in first class! One gets to know Jesus in going out [into] every day [life]. You cannot get to know Jesus in peace and quiet, nor even in the library: Know Jesus.”
Certainly, he added, “we can know Jesus in the Catechism,” for, “the Catechism teaches us many things about Jesus.” He said, "we have to study it, we have to learn it.” Thus, “We know the Son of God, who came to save us, we understand the beauty of the history of salvation, of the love of the Father, studying the Catechism.” Nevertheless, he asked, how many people have read the Catechism of the Catholic Church since it was published over 20 years ago?
“Yes, you have to come to know Jesus in the Catechism – but it is not enough to know Him with the mind: it is a step. However, it is necessary to get to know Jesus in dialogue with Him, talking with Him in prayer, kneeling. If you do not pray, if you do not talk with Jesus, you do not know Him. You know things about Jesus, but you do not go with that knowledge, which He gives your heart in prayer. Know Jesus with the mind - the study of the Catechism: know Jesus with the heart - in prayer, in dialogue with Him. This helps us a good bit, but it is not enough. There is a third way to know Jesus: it is by following Him. Go with Him, walk with Him.”
It is necessary, “to go, to walk along the streets, journeying.” It is necessary, said Pope Francis, “to know Jesus in the language of action.” Here, then, is how you can really know Jesus: with these “three languages ​​- of the mind, heart and action.” If, then, “I know Jesus in these ways,” he said in conclusion, “I involve myself with Him”​​:
“One cannot know Jesus without getting oneself involved with Him, without betting your life [on] Him. When so many people - including us – pose this question: ‘But, who is He?’, The Word of God responds, ‘You want to know who He is? Read what the Church tells you about Him, talk to Him in prayer and walk the street with him. Thus, will you know who this man is.’ This is the way! Everyone must make his choice.”

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Devotion of the First 5 Saturdays

The following is an explanation of the conditions contained in Our Lady's request regarding the Communion of reparation on the First Saturdays of the Month.

  1. Confess and receive Holy Communion
    On February 15, 1926 the Child Jesus alone came to visit Sr. Lucia and asked if the devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary was being propagated. Sr. Lucia spoke of a difficulty some people have in confessing on the first Saturday, and asked if they might be allowed eight days in order to fulfill Our Lady's requests. Jesus answered:"Yes, even more time still, as long as they receive Me in the state of grace and have the intention of making reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary."

  2. Recite the Rosary
    Five decades of the Rosary may be recited at any time or place; yet, since one will be attending Mass in order to receive Holy Communion, a very desirable time and place would be before or after Mass in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. Meditation on the mysteries according to one's capacity is an essential condition for praying the Rosary. Yet, involuntary distractions do not rob the Rosary of fruit if one is doing the best he can.

  3. "Keep me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary."
    The question is often asked: Does the meditation while reciting the Rosary fulfill this condition, or is there required an additional fifteen minutes of meditation? That an additional 15 minutes of meditation is required was recently confirmed by Sr. Lucia of Fatima. It is clear too from a statement by the first Bishop of Fatima.

    The last entry in the chronology of Fatima, published in the official Calendar of the Sanctuary for the year of 1940, and signed by Dom Jose Correia da Silva, the first Bishop of Fatima, gave a summary of Our Lady's requests concerning the Five First Saturdays. From that official statement in the Calendar of the Sanctuary, we read the Bishop's enumeration of the various items that pertain to the devotion of the five Saturdays:

      It consists in going to Confession, receiving Communion, reciting five decades of the Rosary and meditating for a quarter of an hour on the mysteries of the Rosary on the first Saturday of five consecutive months. The Confession may be made during the eight days preceding or following the first Saturday of each month, provided that Holy Communion be received in the state of grace. Should one forget to form the intention of making reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, it may be formed at the next Confession, occasion to go to confession being taken at the first opportunity.

    The meditation embraces one or more mysteries; it may even include all, taken together or separately, according to individual attraction or devotion; but it is preferable to meditate on one mystery each month.
    Speaking of the requirement of "keeping me company for fifteen minutes while meditating on the mysteries of the Rosary," the Bishop's comment that "it is preferable to meditate on one mystery each month" could apply only to an extra fifteen minutes, for each decade of the Rosary must have its own particular meditation. This is clear from the definition of the Rosary given in the official document of the Church on indulgences, the ENCHIRIDION OF INDULGENCES published by Pope Paul VI in 1968. It describes the Rosary as follows:

    "The Rosary is a certain formula of prayer, which is made up of fifteen decades of HAIL MARYS with an OUR FATHER before each decade, and in which the recitation of each decade is accompanied by pious meditation on a particular mystery of our Redemption." (n. 48)
    * * * * * * * * * *
    Like the Rosary, this meditation may be made any time or place during the first Saturday. Yet again, like the Rosary, a very fitting time and place would be in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament before or after Mass. The question has been asked: "Would an extra Rosary, which would require about fifteen minutes, fulfill this request? It would seem, if fruitfully meditated, that it would. Or again, the time could be spent reading meditatively on one of the fifteen mysteries, which is a form of mental prayer that involves reading with frequent pauses to reflect on the matter read.

  4. With the intention of making reparation.
    All of the conditions mentioned above - in numbers 1 to 3 - should be fulfilled with the intention of making reparation to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. On the occasion of the visit of the Child Jesus to Sr. Lucia (Feb. 16, 1926), she asked: "My Jesus, what about those who forget to make the intention?" Jesus answered: "They can do so at their next confession, taking advantage of their first opportunity to go to Confession."
    The above are the minimum requirements for fulfilling the conditions of Our Lady's promise to obtain for us "at the hour of death the graces necessary for salvation." Yet, these Communions of reparation, as has been pointed out, are only a portion of the devotion of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. These few pages are meant to help bring about a frame of mind and heart that will make us aware of the need of reparation all through the month, and not just on the first Saturday.


    It is sometimes asked why Our Lady asked for Communions of reparation on five first Saturdays, instead of some other number. Our Blessed Lord answered that question when He appeared to Sr. Lucia May 29, 1930. He explained that it was because of five kinds of offenses and blasphemies against the Immaculate Heart of Mary, namely: blasphemies against her Immaculate Conception, against her perpetual virginity, against the divine and spiritual maternity of Mary, blasphemies involving the rejection and dishonoring of her images, and the neglect of implanting in the hearts of children a knowledge and love of this Immaculate Mother.

    Page copied from

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Pope Francis in Brazil

If you have a smart phone then download The Pope App created by Official Vatican Media to read the latest news about Pope Francis and content of his public addresses.  
"Dear brothers and sisters, God calls us, by name and surname, each one of us, to proclaim the Gospel and to promote the culture of encounter with joy. The Virgin Mary is our exemplar. In her life she was a model of that motherly love with which all who join in the Church's apostolic mission for the regeneration of humanity should be animated. Let us ask her to teach us to encounter one and other in Jesus every day. And when we pretend not to notice because we have many things to do and the tabernacle is abandoned, may she take us by the hand. Let us ask this of her! Watch over me, Mother, when I am disorientated, and lead me by the hand." Pope Francis, 27 July 2013, Rio de Janeiro. 

Friday, 11 January 2013

Sr. Emmanuel's Commentary on the Christmas Day Message

From Medjugorje Today News Agency: 
'Comments have been many since the Infant Jesus spoke on Christmas Day. But they are unnecessary, as the message of the Child is very clear, the famous French nun Sister Emmanuel says after 23 years in Medjugorje. Simply listen and live the Commandments, she advises.' To read the full article please click here