|"Gospa" painted as she is described|
On June 24, 1981, six children (now adults) experienced an apparition of the “Gospa” (Blessed Mother) in Medjugorje, Yugoslavia. To this day, thousands of miracles of healing, conversion and eyewitnesses of a dancing sun are reported at the site. If you are cautious about private revelation without Church approval, I understand. So were many people about Fatima and Lourdes prior to their approval. But I believe in them because I don’t think Our Lady would stop speaking, helping or appearing to her children in 1917, especially when we are living in perilous times of Church crisis in a culture of death.
Blessed John Paul II reportedly said that if he weren’t Pope, he would have been hearing confessions in Medjugorje, so he asked one of the visionaries to take his red shoes to the Madonna in his place. He was also quoted as speaking favorably of Medjugorje to various Archbishops, Bishops and priests, often encouraging them to “Go to Medjugorje.”
I’d follow the former pope’s red shoes if I could. But since I can’t, I’ve attended live apparitions with travelling visionaries. Soon after my first miscarriage, I prayed to Our Lady for a baby. Marija Lunetti, visionary, shared that if pilgrims ask her to pray for a pregnancy, she instructs those people to go buy a crib because that is one prayer Our Lady is glad to answer. I gave birth to a baby girl exactly 9 months later on Easter Sunday. And that’s really just the tip of the iceberg of the graces she’s given me.
I follow Medjugorje’s messages to pray the rosary and convert because if I’m ambitious enough to want to become like Our Lady, then what better way than to listen to her? If I ignore her motherly advice, then I’d be just like this:
That’s a Cotswald sheep’s yarn, given to me by a friend who visited Amish country, after she heard that I’d been wanting to learn how to knit for the last two decades. Now, the yarn sits there, mocking me, “You caaan’t kni-it…you caaan’t kni-it!” because I haven’t taken any steps to get a how-to-video, sit down with my knitting friends or even purchase the needles. And I don’t want my Marian spiritual life to be stagnant like my knitting plans. (Post-it to self: knit a scarf by winter.)
Our Lady asks us to fast on bread and water two days a week: Wednesdays and Fridays. I almost passed out on my first day of fast (I was breastfeeding) until I learned to do it gradually. First, I gave up a meal for bread and pretty soon it was two meals to three. I am working up to a Wednesday fast but I confess my flesh is weak.
|If my breads look like this, fasting wouldn't be a challenge.|
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I love conversion stories but this one the most: Fr. Donald Calloway, MIC shared his riveting conversion journey from juvenile delinquent to Catholic to priest because of a book about the apparitions in Mejugorje. Read it in his book or listen to his story on lighthousemedia CDs.
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!