(c)Mary TV, 2012
Denis walks towards the Mary TV Studio (building shared with Via Mia Pension)
June 21, 2012
Saint Aloysius Gonzaga
Dear Family of Mary!
"Dear children! Today I invite you to open yourselves to God by means of prayer so the Holy Spirit may begin to work miracles in you and through you. I am with you and I intercede before God for each one of you because, dear children, each one of you is important in my plan of salvation. I invite you to be carriers of good and peace. God can give you peace only if you convert and pray. Therefore, my dear little children, pray, pray, pray and do that which the Holy Spirit inspires you. Thank you for having responded to my call." (May 25, 1993)
This message has always struck me as very important. Our Lady directs us to open ourselves to God and to pray so that the Holy Spirit can direct us, inspire us, and lead us in the plan that God has for each one of us, individually. Nowhere is this more evident than in Medjugorje. Yesterday we experienced this mysterious movement of the Holy Spirit in a beautiful way.
I worked late into the night, Tuesday evening, to get the reflection out and so I woke up a little too late, and very groggy. After we dropped Tom and Mary Matasso off at our studio, Denis and I drove up to Bijakovici to visit Maria Pavlovic-Lunetti. We arrived at her home to find that she was not there, but as we visited with her helper, a woman came out of the dining room and exclaimed, "Denis and Cathy!" It was our good friend Margaret from Scotland whom we had not seen since our first meeting in 1987, in Medjugorje! What a joyful reunion we had.
Margaret and Cathy at Marija's retreat center, Magnificat
(c)Mary TV 2012
Let me tell you the story of our first meeting. (Some of you have heard part of it in my talk at the Notre Dame Conference in May 2012.) Denis and I traveled to Medjugorje, in October 1987. It was a miracle that we could come at that time - another story to be told another time! We left behind 7 children in the care of my parents. I was expecting child number 8! So it was a big trip for us. We arrived in Medjugorje in the evening, and went straight to the church for evening mass. I remember standing in the back, behind the last pew, and being so grateful to be there. It was apparition time, and the apparitions were occurring in the choir loft, just above our heads. When Our Lady came, I felt her presence so near, so real. I heard in my heart these words, "I'm here." I answered, "I know..." She said, "And I love you." I answered, "I know that too!" (I knew it because I was experiencing that love in my whole being.) Then she said, "And your job is to love others too." I responded, "Yes, I will." That was it. That was my first moments in Medjugorje.
Well, we went to our pension, up at the foot of Krizevac, and that night I began to miscarry our baby. It was unexpected and difficult. The next 7 days I had to stay in bed and wait to see what would happen. I couldn't climb the hill, I couldn't go to the Church, and I couldn't hear visionaries speak or listen to the priests talks. I was stuck in bed. It was Margaret who was my angel of mercy. As word got out that an American pilgrim was miscarrying in the village, Margaret came to see me. She is a nurse and knew what to look for and what I should do. She tended me with care all those days, even though she was staying with Maria, and serving her as well. You can imagine what a comfort it was to have someone who spoke English and could help me through that difficult time. Margaret also told Marija about my situation, and Marija recommended me and the baby to Our Lady during her apparition. This was a great comfort for me.
Well, I did end up miscarrying, and we named the child Matthew. Margaret told Marija that the American pilgrim had miscarried, and that evening when Marija had her apparition, she told Margaret that there was an extra angel present with Our Lady. We like to think that was Matthew's guardian angel. It is so wonderful to see Margaret again!
Margaret showed us around the new building erected behind Marija's house. It is a huge retreat center where groups can stay for retreats with their own priests, and Marija and her staff serve them. It is beautiful. Here is a picture of the front of the building, with Margaret and me in front!
The next surprise from the Holy Spirit was the arrival of Marija herself! What joy to see her again!! She sat with us for a while, and we had a lovely chat. I grabbed a picture of her as we left, waving good bye. I sensed such hope for the future from Marija and from her project of a retreat center. It is part of the provision for the future that I wrote about yesterday. Our Lady is building for a time when many people will come to Medjugorje for healing and salvation.
Marija at her Magnificat Retreat Center
(c)Mary TV 2012
Denis and I left Marija's house to meet more friends for a lunch at a special restaurant called "The Widows". It is outside of Citluk, on the main road, and it specializes in lamb. We met with Dragon and Maja, our hosts, and a very special lady named Mary from Ireland. Mary told us an incredible story about her first and second trip to Medjugorje. I will write up the full story someday with Mary's help, but for now, let me tell you some facts. Mary went to Medjugorje on December 8, 1984 with her 80 year old mother, and only because her mother wanted to go. Mary wasn't convinced about the apparitions. It was a very brave thing to do. They had to use public transportation, and find their way to Medjugorje without much help. They arrived and had to depend on Fr. Pervan to find them some sleeping space with a family! That trip had a lasting effect on Mary. She knew that she had to bring others from Ireland to Medjugorje. Her heart had been so transformed that now she wanted everyone from Ireland to experience the Gospa.
Mary bravely arranged for a charter flight at Easter 1985 for 148 people from Ireland. As she said, she could have lost her home and everything if there were not enough pilgrims. But she filled the plane and somehow got them all to Medjugorje! This was the beginning of many pilgrimages to Medjugorje from Ireland! And Mary still comes often to Medjugorje to this day. Now she spends her time helping others. She is a beautiful fruit of Medjugorje.
After that delicious meal, we raced back to Mary TV to pray our "live" Rosary at our Studio. It was a very hot day, and so we prayed the Rosary inside our first functioning studio. We did have a camera outside showing the Church next door. But it was an anointed moment for us. I felt the Holy Spirit saying that this studio would be used to transmit many testimonies and encouraging stories to people all over the world. Today we launched the studio, and it is now sailing on the digital sea!!
Then we went to Holy Mass and again prayed the Magnificat with Marija and Ivan. They are steadfast for Our Lady and help us to be also!
(c)Mary TV 2012
Marija and Ivan pray the Magnificat
The final gift of the Holy Spirit yesterday was a "chance" meeting. It was a Divine Appointment really. As Mary Matasso was walking across the street for Holy Mass, she nearly ran into a young Franciscan Friar and exclaimed with joy! This Friar is dear friend of her family, a young man who grew up with her sons. She was totally surprised, as was he. He told her he is here on a pilgrimage before he makes final vows as a TOR of the Franciscans. What a joy! This Holy Spirit inspired meeting was a gift to them both. Tom and Mary had dinner with him and were able to share so many memories and joys! This is a true gift of God, the kind of gift that happens all the time in Medjugorje.
This is the first time the young friar has been to Medjugorje, and he shared another first with us. He was able to attend the apparition with Marija in her chapel on Tuesday. He told us how Marija was praying the Rosary with everyone in her chapel and then in a moment she stopped, and gazed up. It was Our Lady. This young friar said he immediately felt the anointing of the Holy Spirit, and he experienced the presence of Our Lady. He was convinced. It was a true grace for him, and his face beamed.
Marija's chapel, where she greets Our Lady!
(c)Mary TV 2012
Well, you can see that the Holy Spirit was very busy today in Medjugorje. Three very incredible meetings of old friends and a wonderful time of sharing with a beautiful woman of faith from Ireland! Not to mention the launching of the Mary TV studio on the digital sea. Not bad for one day!
Mary TV's front door! Sailing on the Digital Sea!
(c)Mary TV 2012
This is one of the graces of Medjugorje. As Our Lady said in the March 25, 1993 message, she is with us, interceding for us so that we can follow the plan that God has for each of us, and that we need to pray, pray, pray and follow the inspirations of the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit alone who can arrange such days as this!
God bless everyone, and see you tomorrow!
©Mary TV 2012