Monday, December 31, 2007

The Year of The Unfolding

Mark Mallett

—Spiritual Food For Thought—

The Year of The Unfolding


AMID the din of Christmas feasting and family frolicking, these words continue to float above the noise with persistence:

This is the Year of The Unfolding… 

After a week of pondering these words, "The Petals" came to mind—those initial meditations on this website which in many ways sparked this "ministry of writing."  While these Petals will take time to fully unfold, I believe Heaven has been preparing us for this remarkable season in which we will see the Triumph of Mary begin to reveal itself before our eyes. 

What all this means I cannot say. But the glimpses I have been given over Christmas are as exciting as they are amazing. In many ways, the Advent readings have said it all, which is why I felt compelled to write that we should listen to them carefully, particularly to the daily Mass readings.

I am struck by how this generation is truly unlike any before it. Never have we had a period since the time of Christ when Israel was a formal nation; when communication could happen across the planet and beyond in the blink of an eye; when all the world's knowledge could be found at the click of a button; when we would see with our eyes galaxies beyond galaxies; when men could fly through space… or sail beneath the sea. But more ominously, never before have we had a generation which has aborted so many babies (over 44 million since 1973); prevented the existence of entire populations through birth control; used technology to clone and create life; been in control of weapons which could annihilate nations; and become so wealthy… and yet so spiritually poor.

In short, we have become a generation of "gods" who have become less than human. 

The Year of the Unfolding is upon us. It may be subtle. Or it may in fact become dramatically apparent to every soul on earth. God knows. What seems certain is that life is going to change for all of us.

And perhaps sooner than later.




Published in: DAILY JOURNAL, THE PETALS | on December 31st, 2007 |


I Desire to Keep On Giving You Messages

On January 25, 2008, we will mark 21 years of Our Lady giving Her monthly message to the world. For twenty-one years, Our Lady has given each month, without fail, Her monthly message. Our Lady's messages are referenced in the last chapter of the Bible, in the book of Revelation. The messages are bringing healing to all the nations. The mes-sages are simple, crystal clear and Our Lady said that they are conveyed from God. She has come to heal the nations, and that these messages are to flow out as a river to the world.

Revelation 22:1-2

"Then he showed me the river of the water of life, clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations."

As much as we try to comprehend the significance of these words each month, we realize that they are filled with mystery. It will be for those who live in future generations to grasp the greater significance of the times in which we all are so privileged to be living. Medjugorje is still so mysterious, even after over 26 years of daily apparitions of the Mother of God. We still feel like infants just learning to take their first steps in trying to grasp what Our Lady is trying to accomplish in the world today for the salvation of man. It strikes amazement in our hearts when She tells us that Her plan is succeeding, especially when we sometimes see so little of that reality in our own world.

June 25, 2004

"…Also today, joy is in my heart. I desire to thank you for making my plan realizable. Each of you is important, therefore, little children, pray and rejoice with me for every heart that has converted and become an instrument of peace in the world. Prayer groups are powerful and through them I can see, little children, that the Holy Spirit is at work in the world…"

Six years prior to the first monthly message given, Our Lady had initiated first the visionaries and then the parish of Medjugorje on an intense spiritual course, preparing them to be witnesses to the world. She began giving the parish a special message, through Marija, every Thursday evening in the church, asking the village to follow Her instructions and become tools in Her hands that would lead the world to conversion. Despite many obstacles, attacks and a number of villagers whose initial fervor cooled off, on January 8, 1987, Our Lady announced that part of God's plan had been fulfilled and now a new step was beginning for Medjugorje.

January 8, 1987

"Dear children, I desire to thank you for every response to the messages. Especially, dear children, thank you for all the sacrifices and prayers which you have presented to me. Dear children, I desire to keep on giving you still further messages, only not every Thursday, dear children, but on the 25th of each month. The time has come when what my Lord desired has been fulfilled. Now I will give you fewer messages but I am still with you. Therefore, dear children, I beseech you, listen to my messages and live them, so I can guide you. Dear children, thank you for having responded to my call."

Beginning January 25, 1987, the first monthly message of Our Lady Queen of Peace was given to the world, and Her call went out to all mankind, Her voice seeking every human heart, in every little corner of the world. She called, and is still calling, these hearts to Medjugorje, requesting of them to join the ranks of Her children, to become witnesses within their own homes, neighborhoods, churches and communities, the world over. She reminds us all that we are important to Her plan's success. There is purpose to Her calling, all of which is leading to the fulfillment of Her plans.

January 25, 1987

"Dear children, behold, also today I want to call you to start living a new life as of today. Dear children, I want you to comprehend that God has chosen each one of you, in order to use you in a great plan for the salvation of mankind. You are not able to comprehend how great your role is in God's design. Therefore, dear children, pray so that in prayer you may be able to comprehend what God's plan is in your regard. I am with you in order that you may be able to bring it about in all its fullness. Thank you for having responded to my call."

We are in the midst of a plan, in which each of us has been asked to participate. Each day that passes, this plan is reaching towards its fulfillment. satan is against the plan because, of course, it ultimately means the destruction of his own plans. So he fights all those who have answered "yes" to Our Lady, who are willing to shoulder his attacks so that they can become the sacrifices given to Jesus in order that everything is fulfilled the way He has planned it.

January 9, 1986

"Dear children, I invite you by your prayers to help Jesus along in the fulfillment of all of the plans which He is forming here. And offer your sacrifices to Jesus in order that everything is fulfilled the way He has planned it and that satan can accomplish nothing…"

February 12, 1990

"…I wish, dear children, tonight again to call you to prayer because I need your help for the fulfillment of my plans. I need your cooperation [participation], dear children…"

As we get ready to begin this year of 2008, it would be good for us to spend some time in reflection on the plan that Our Lady is constantly urging and encouraging us to help Her fulfill. She has told us many times to pray for Her intentions. In Alabama, She repeatedly gave this message during the first apparitions here in 1988. Below is just one.

November 26, 1988

"I ask you once again to pray. Especially pray for my intentions. If you pray for my intentions, I will be glorified through you. All your prayers are going to help you through my hands."

Our Lady has Her intentions. She has Her desires, Her wishes, Her wants, and She asks us to pray for those intentions to be fully realized. Through Her messages, especially Her monthly messages to the world, we do not have to guess at what Her intentions are…She boldly proclaims to us what She wants on our behalf. As we get ready to begin the New Year, let us ponder how successful Our Lady has been in accomplishing the fulfillment of those desires in our own lives. Though the temptation is always to look and judge whether or not your husband or your wife, your children or your neighbor, your co-worker or your priest, your friend or your enemy is living Our Lady's call to holiness – you know when the message comes in each month, as you hold Her words in your hands that those words are directed towards Her "dear children," who we all claim to be. So the question is not whether others have answered Her call, but have you answered Her call? Not have others decided for holiness, but have you decided for holiness? Not are others fulfilling Her plans, but are you fulfilling Her plans? The following is not a complete list of Our Lady's "wants" as revealed to us in Her messages. It suffices, however, to lead us towards reflection in prayer. Avoid the temptation to rapidly read through this list of messages. Spend some quiet time meditating on Our Lady's words. These are the things She wants for you. These are the things She is praying to be accomplished in your life. We know that ultimately Our Lady's victory will be accomplished. We know the "end of the story," so to speak. But how very sad if Our Lady doesn't succeed in having Her wants, Her desires, Her wishes, Her intentions fulfilled in your own life. Will you be in the story? Keep this Caritas Newsletter near you throughout the New Year. Refer to it often in your prayer and ask yourself that if Our Lady wants these things for you, what is stopping you from obtaining them? Make it your aim, for 2008, to make Our Lady happy by giving Her what She desires on Her "want list" for you.

Our Lady's New Year's Resolution "Want" List

"…today I want to wrap you all in my mantle and lead you all along the way of conversion…" (2-25-87)

"…I want each one of you to be happy, but in sin nobody can be happy…" (2-25-87)

"…pray, and in prayer you shall realize a new way of joy. Joy will manifest in your hearts and thus you shall be joyful witnesses of that which I and My Son want from each one of you…" (2-25-87)

"…I do not want you, dear children, to live the message and be committing sin which is displeasing to me…" (3-25-87)

"…I am your Mother and, therefore, I want to lead you all to complete holiness. I want each one of you to be happy here on earth and to be with me in Heaven…" (5-25-87)

"…today I thank you and I want to invite you all to God's peace. I want each one of you to experience in your heart that peace which God gives. I want to bless you all today…" (6-25-87)

"…I love you and, therefore, I want you to be holy. I do not want satan to block you on that way…" (7-25-87)

"…today also I want to call you all to prayer…" (9-25-87)

"…today I want to call all of you to decide for Paradise…" (10-25-87)

"…I am with you and I want you to believe me, that I love you…" (11-25-87)

"…My heart is rejoicing because of Jesus and today I want to give Him to you. Dear children, I want each one of you to open your heart to Jesus and I will give Him to you with love. Dear children, I want Him to change you, to teach you, and to protect you…" (12-25-87)

"…Day by day, I am praying for you and I want to draw you ever closer to God; but I cannot if you don't want it…" (1-25-88)

"…I want you to obey me and not permit satan to seduce you…" (2-25-88)

"Dear children, God wants to make you holy…" (4-25-88)

"…I desire that through you the whole world may get to know the God of joy…I want you to love all men with my love, both the good and the bad. Only that way will love conquer the world…" (5-25-88)

"…I want to draw you closer to the Heart of Jesus…I want you to consecrate yourselves as individuals, families, and parishes so that all belongs to God through my hands…I do not want anything for myself, rather, all for the salvation of your souls…" (10-25-88)

"…unceasingly I desire to lead you into the joy of life. I desire that each one of you discovers the joy and the love which is found only in God and which only God can give. God wants nothing else from you but your surrender…" (5-25-89)

"…I desire that the grace of God be great for every single one of you…" (6-25-89)

"…I invite you to give thanks to God for all the gifts you have discovered in the course of your life and even for the least gift you have received. I give thanks with you and want all of you to experience the joy of these gifts, and I want God to be everything for each one of you…" (9-25-89)

"…I desire that your decisions be free before God, because He has given you freedom…" (11-25-89)

"…I especially want you to renounce all the things to which you are attached but are hurting your spiritual life…" (2-25-90)

"…I want to protect you from everything that satan offers you and through which he wants to destroy you…God wants to save you and sends you messages through men, nature, and so many things which can only help you to understand that you must change the direction of your life…" (3-25-90)

"…I desire that each one of you discover the way of holiness and grow in it until eternity…" (4-25-90)

"…I desire to help you 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 a special way…" (5-25-90)

"…I desire to help you with my prayers and I desire to guide you on the path of peace…" (10-25-90)

"…I am with you and I desire to help each of you to live and, by living, to witness the good news…" (5-25-91)

"…I desire to take you into my heart and protect you…" (1-25-92)

"…I wanted to create of you an oasis of peace, love and goodness. God wanted you with your love and with His help to do miracles and thus give an example…" (3-25-92)

"…I wish to reveal to you and show you the God who loves you…" (8-25-92)

"…have more trust in me, because I am here in order to help you and to guide you on a new path towards a new life…" (10-25-92)

"…I wish that each of you decides himself for a change of life and that each of you works more in the Church, not through words and thoughts but through example, so that your life may be a joyful testimony for Jesus…" (2-25-93)

"…I desire you to awaken love in your families so that where there is unrest and hatred, love will reign…" (4-25-93)

"…I want your life to be bound to me…" (7-25-93)

"…I do not want satan to deceive you, for he wants to lead you the wrong way…" (7-25-93)

"…I want you to understand that I am your Mother, that I want to help you and call you to prayer…" (8-25-93)

"…I want you to be children of the light and not of the darkness…" (8-25-93)

"…I love you and wish to protect you from every evil, but you do not desire it. Dear children, I cannot help you if you do not live God's Commandments, if you do not live the Mass, if you do not abandon sin…" (10-25-93)

"…I desire, little children, that all of you who have felt the fragrance of holiness, through these messages which I am giving you, to carry it in this world, hungry for God and God's love…" (3-25-94)

"…I love you and want to lead you all with me to Paradise…" (4-25-94)

"…I am your Mother and I wish that your hearts be similar to my heart…" (11-25-94)

"…I wish to make of you a most beautiful bouquet prepared for eternity…" (7-25-95)

"…I wish that each of you become a carrier of my messages…" (2-25-96)

"…I also wish that you all become active during this time that is through me connected to Heaven in a special way…I wish that all people convert and see me and my Son, Jesus, in you…" (5-25-96)

"…I wish to speak to you and to invite you to have more faith and trust in God, who loves you immeasurably…" (8-25-96)

"…I wish to renew you…" (10-25-96)

"…I desire to reveal to you the God of love and the God of peace. I do not desire for your life to be in sadness but that it be realized in joy for eternity, according to the Gospel…" (12-25-96)

"…I desire, dear children, that during this time you find a corner for personal prayer. I desire to lead you towards prayer with the heart…" (7-25-97)

"…I desire for you to become carriers of peace and of God's joy to today's world without peace…" (10-25-97)

"…I desire that each of you reflect and carry peace in your heart and say: I want to put God in the first place in my life…" (12-25-97)

"…Little children, tell everyone, I want the good for you and He will respond with the good and, little children, good will come to dwell in the heart of each man…" (12-25-97)

"…Little children, I desire that you become apostles of love…" (3-25-98)

"…I desire for you to comprehend that I want to realize here, not only a place of prayer but also a meeting of hearts. I desire for my, Jesus' and your heart to become one heart of love and peace…" (7-25-99)

"…I desire to thank you and to inspire you to work even more for God and His Kingdom with love and the power of the Holy Spirit…" (8-25-2000)

We all have certainly fallen short of fulfilling Our Lady's desires for us at times, but that is the beauty of a New Year. It is a new beginning; an opportunity to become "resolute" in tackling bad habits, sinful patterns, or negative attitudes. May Our Lady's words be the incentive you need to decide, and get on your knees even at this moment, for a change in your life.

"I want you to be Jesus' joy."

October 31, 1997

Our Lady's Peace to You,
A Friend of Medjugorje

If you feel our efforts this year are worthy of support, would you consider making a small tax-deductible gift to help us continue. Click here to donate.

To Make Your Comment Click Here

Encourage all you know to sign up for MejList in order to be kept updated on the latest and crucial information on Medjugorje.

©SJP Lic. • This may be reproduced and redistributed provided that the content is copied in its entirety, including graphics, pictures, captions, etc. and credit given to and Caritas of Birmingham. Also, permission is granted to quote from blogs, news sources, or other websites as long as it is referenced to of Birmingham.

[MaryVitamin] the poverty of Bethlehem

Mary Vitamin for December 31st
Topic:  The Poverty of Bethlehem
St. Alphonsus di Liguori
 "The gifts received from the holy Magi cannot certainly have been of small value; but we are assured by Saint Bernard that she distributed them to the poor through the hands of Saint Joseph….Mary herself said to saint Bridget, 'All that I could get I gave to the poor and only reserved a little food and clothing for myself.'"
St. Alphonsus di Liguori, The Glories of Mary, (Tan Books: 1978), 491.
St. Francis de Sales
"The more one mortifies his natural inclinations, the more he becomes capable of receiving the divine inspirations, and the more he gains in virtue."
St. Vincent de Paul
"Whoever makes little account of exterior mortifications, alleging that the interior are more perfect, shows clearly that he is not mortified at all, either exteriorly or interiorly."
A Year with the Saints (Tan Books)
Today, while I am working, I will reflect on the voluntary poverty that Our Lord and Our Lady lived. Poverty indicates a life of strenuous and never ending hard work. I will remember Our Lady's hard work and that she chose it, accepted it without complaining, and in fact loved it because the Blessed Virgin Mary was conformed to God's Will. This is the lesson taught in the cave at Bethlehem.
Marian Vow:
St. Maximilian Kolbe
"One who is consecrated knows that in the Immaculate Virgin and through the
Immaculate Virgin one will, in the quickest and easiest possible way, become one with Jesus, one with God.  He knows that in and through him She will love Jesus in a matchless, perfect manner, in whatever one may seek to do, whatever be the way... He knows that this is the only way to that sanctity which is the easiest and most sublime, tending to God's greatest glory"
I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Thanks be to God for graces received .


Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to the Jordan, unto John, to be baptized by him.
But John stayed him, saying: "I ought to be baptized by thee, and comest thou to me?"
(Matt. 3:13-14)

HUMILITY: St. John showed his humility by the words: "I ought to be baptized by Thee, and comest Thou to me?"

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]

(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima returning to San Diego

21 churches, 13 schools and a nursing home

The Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima will be in San Diego for three weeks from Jan. 4 to Jan. 24, visiting 21 churches, 13 schools and a nursing home.

The statue, last in San Diego 15 years ago, returns again thanks to the initiative of Thomas McKenna, a board member of the International Pilgrim Virgin Statue Foundation who moved to San Diego two years ago.

There are three pilgrim statues throughout the world, but McKenna says this one is unique. "It came here in 1947," said McKenna. "There is a particular grace with this statue because ever since it first came to America, the conversions that have taken place have been exceptional."

McKenna says it is not so much the statue itself but what it represents that is so powerful. "The way the world is today, the Fatima message is more important than ever," he explained. "When we look at the world today, with 1,400 abortions per day in our country, the immorality and things we see, we understand the reality of the Fatima message more than anyone did in 1917."

Read the rest of this story here: California Catholic Daily


Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that Jesus also being baptized and praying, heaven was opened. (Luke 3:21)

THE PRAYER OF OUR LORD after His baptism shows that we too ought to pray after receiving the holy Sacraments; that is, we ought to thank God for the grace received, and pray for perseverance in grace and good works.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]
(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Saturday, December 29, 2007


And John gave testimony, saying: "I saw the Spirit coming down, as a dove from heaven; and he remained upon him." (John 1:32)

THE EFFECTS OF CHRISTIAN BAPTISM: The wonderful events which followed the baptism of Jesus directly foreshadowed the wonderful effects of Christian Baptism which our Lord then instituted. In the Sacrament of Baptism the Holy Ghost comes down on man, gives him sanctifying grace, and implants in him the three theological virtues of Faith, Hope, and Charity. By the grace of Baptism God adopts man to be His beloved child, and opens for him the way to heaven.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]
(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Friday, December 28, 2007

[MaryVitamin] dependent upon Our Lady

Mary Vitamin for December 28th
Topic: Dependent upon Our Lady
St. Louis de Montfort
"This good Master did not disdain to shut Himself up in the womb of the Blessed Virgin, as a captive and as a loving slave, and later be subject and obedient to her for thirty years."
True Devotion to Mary, (Tan Books: 1985), 88.
St. Louis de Montfort
 "It is here, I repeat, that the human mind loses itself, when it seriously reflects on the conduct of the Incarnate Wisdom who willed to give Himself to men -- not directly, though He might have done so, but through the Blessed Virgin. He did not will to come into the world at the age of perfect man, independent of others, but like a poor little babe, dependent on the care and support of this holy Mother."
St. Louis de Montfort, True Devotion to Mary, (Tan Books: 1985), 88.
Today I want to make many Spiritual Communions and remember each time that the Almighty God came into the world: humble, poor, and dependent upon the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Marian Vow:
The Marian Vow fulfills what St. Louis de Montfort says:
"The more the Holy Spirit finds Mary, His dear and inseparable spouse, in any soul, the more active and mighty He becomes in producing Jesus Christ in that soul, and that soul in Jesus Christ."
I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Thanks be to God for graces received.
*To make a Spiritual communion it is sufficient to think of a Tabernacle or a Monstrance and ask the Lord to come into your soul spiritually.
My Jesus, I believe that You are really present in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot now receive You Sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart... (pause) ...I embrace You as though you were already there and unite myself wholly to You, never let me be separated from You


And John gave testimony, saying: "I saw the Spirit coming down, as a dove from heaven; and he remained upon him." (John 1:32)

JESUS, THE ANOINTED: The visible descent of the Holy Ghost upon Jesus showed that in Him dwelt the fullness of the Holy Spirit, and that, being the one great Prophet, Priest, and King, He is indeed the Anointed, the Christ. In this way Jesus solemnly entered on His public work of Redemption. The kings and priests of the Old Testament were anointed with oil, and, by this unction, endued with the graces necessary for their state; as, for instance (Old Test. L), you read that the Spirit of the Lord came upon David after Samuel had anointed him: but Jesus was anointed by the Holy Ghost Himself, without the intervention of the outward sign of oil. He is, therefore, the Anointed of the anointed, the Christ.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]
(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Thursday, December 27, 2007

St. Joseph and the Christmas Mystery

Mary Vitamin for December 27th
Topic: St. Joseph & the Christmas Mystery
From John Henry Cardinal Newman's
"Consider the Glories of St. Joseph"*
"St. Joseph was the cherub, placed to guard the new terrestrial Paradise from the intrusion of every foe."
(cf. Genesis 3:24)**
The Blessed Virgin Mary is the New Paradise, the Virgin Earth from which the Tree of Life is born. St. Joseph is an essential part of this mystery of our Faith.
John Paul II
"Therefore he became a unique guardian of the mystery "hidden for ages in God" (Eph 3:9), as did Mary, in that decisive moment which St. Paul calls "the fullness of time," when "God sent forth his Son, born of redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons" (Gal 4:4-5)…
Together with Mary, Joseph is the first guardian of this divine mystery. Together with Mary, and in relation to Mary, he shares in this final phase of God 's self-revelation in Christ, and he does so from the very beginning. Looking at the gospel texts of both Matthew and Luke, one can also say that Joseph is the first to share in the faith of the Mother of God, and that in doing so he supports his spouse in the faith of the divine annunciation. He is also the first to be placed by God on the path of Mary's "pilgrimage of faith." It is a path along which—especially at the time of Calvary and Pentecost—Mary will precede in a perfect way."
 Today, I resolve to think of St. Joseph and to act like St. Joseph, the Guardian of the Holy Family. One time today, in honor of St. Joseph,  I will choose something or someone else over myself in order to protect the place of honor the Infant and Our Lady have in my heart. I will think of St. Joseph and ask him to teach me the proper veneration due to the Holy Mother of God and Her Son.
Marian Vow:
St. Louis de Montfort
"Mary is God's garden of Paradise, his own unspeakable world, into which his Son entered to do wonderful things, to tend it and to take his delight in it." ( Secret of Mary, paragraph 19)
I will tap my heart today and reflect on the Paradise of Blessings which I have been given by my Marian Vow. I will ask St. Joseph to defend it.
I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary .
Thanks be to God for graces received.
**Scroll down to find all of Newman's
Consider the Glories of St. Joseph:
*Genesis 24
"When he expelled the man, he settled him east of the garden of Eden; and he stationed the cherubim and the fiery revolving sword to guard the tree of life."

group link:



Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that Jesus also being baptized and praying, heaven was opened. And the Holy Ghost descended in a bodily shape, as a dove, upon him. And a voice came from heaven: Thou art my beloved Son. In thee I am well pleased. (Luke 3:21-22)

THE MYSTERY OF THE BLESSED TRINITY: Even in the Old Testament there were several intimations given that there are more Persons than one in God. "The Spirit of God moved over the waters." "Let us make man to our image and likeness." "I will be to Him a Father, and He will be My Son." Now, in the New Testament, the mystery was fully revealed. The angel Gabriel said: "The Holy which shall be born of thee . . . shall be called the Son of God." This revelation, however, was made to the Blessed Virgin alone. In the Scripture we read above, the mystery of One God in Three Persons is for the first time proclaimed publicly and solemnly. God the Father speaks from heaven; God the Son, in human form, stands in the Jordan; and God the Holy Ghost, under the form of a dove, hovers over the head of Jesus.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]
(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

What did the shepherds see and hear?

Mary Vitamin for December 26th
Topic: What did the shepherds see and hear?
"And it came to pass, after the angels departed from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another: Let us go over to Bethlehem, and let us see this word that is come to pass, which the Lord hath shewed to us. And they came with haste; and they found Mary and Joseph, and the infant lying in the manger. And seeing, they understood of the word that had been spoken to them concerning this child."
Ven Mary of Agreda
"They departed without delay and entering the cave or portal, they found, as saint Luke tells us, Mary and Joseph, and the Infant lying in a manger. Seeing all this they recognized the truth of what they had heard of the Child. Upon this followed an interior enlightenment consequent upon seeing the Word made flesh; for when the shepherds looked upon Him,   He also glanced at them, emitting from his countenance a great effulgence, which wounded with love the sincere heart of each of these poor yet fortunate men; with divine efficiency it changed them and renewed them, … Prostrating themselves on the earth they adored the Word made flesh. … The heavenly Lady and Mother of the Child took notice of all that they did interiorly and exteriorly … As She was then the organ of the holy Spirit and the representative of the Infant, She spoke to the shepherds, instructing and exhorting them to persevere in divine love and in the service of the Most High."
Mystical City of God , Volume II (Tan Books: 2006), 416.
(For more information on the book, the Mystical City of God by Ven. Mary of Agreda, please visit and look for Fr. Peter Fehlner FI, STD's video presentation:
Today, in imitation of the shepherds, I will listen to the words of Our Lady, who encouraged the shepherds to "persevere in divine love and in the service of the Most High".   I can do this today by seeing the Infant in my family members and finding Him in my duties.
(Parents could look directly into children's eyes while thinking "I will find Him here.")
Marian Vow:
John Paul II
"The newborn Child, defenseless and totally dependent on the care of Mary and Joseph, entrusted to their love, is the world's entire wealth. He is our all!"
I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Thanks be to God for graces received.


And forthwith coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens open and the Spirit as a dove descending and remaining on him. And there came a voice from heaven: "Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased." (Mark 1:10-11)

THE OPENING OF HEAVEN signified that Heaven, which had been closed to man since the Fall, was now once more opened by Jesus. The visible apparition of the Holy Ghost proclaimed that in Jesus dwelt the fullness of divine grace and wisdom, and that He it was who would baptize with the Holy Ghost (John 1: 33). The voice of God the Father proved that this Jesus, who had just received baptism like a sinful son of Adam, was indeed the beloved Son of the Father, in whom, in the days of His humiliation, His Father was well-pleased.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]
(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


Our Lady's Message of
December 25, 2007

Our Lady Queen of Peace of Medjugorje's December 25, 2007 Monthly Message

"Dear children! With great joy I bring you the King of Peace for Him to bless you with His blessing. Adore Him and give time to the Creator for whom your heart yearns. Do not forget that you are passers-by on this earth and that things can give you small joys, while through my Son, eternal life is given to you. That is why I am with you, to lead you towards what your heart yearns for. Thank you for having responded to my call."

Our Lady Queen of Peace of Medjugorje's Annual December 25, 2007 Apparition to Jakov Colo

The apparition began at 2:29 p.m. and lasted 6 minutes. The following is Our Lady's message:

"Dear children! Today, in a special way I call you to become open to God and for each of your hearts today to become a place of Jesus' birth. Little children, through all this time that God permits me to be with you, I desire to lead you to the joy of your life. Little children, the only true joy of your life is God. Therefore, dear children, do not seek joy in things of this earth but open your hearts and accept God. Little children, everything passes, only God remains in your heart. Thank you for having responded to my call."

Do not forget tomorrow's Radio WAVE broadcast on to discuss the messages of December 25, 2007. See chart below for your local time.

Your Time ZoneOnline Air Time

Eastern Time8:00 PM - Wednesday (December 26)

Central Time7:00 PM - Wednesday

Mountain Time6:00 PM - Wednesday

Pacific Time5:00 PM - Wednesday

Hawaii Time3:00 PM - Wednesday

Brazil Time10:00 PM - Wednesday

Sydney, Australia12:00 PM - Thursday(December 27)

Seoul9:00 AM - Thursday

Beijing, Singapore8:00 AM - Thursday

Calcutta7:30 AM - Thursday

Baghdad, Moscow4:00 AM - Thursday

Jerusalem, Athens, Cairo3:00 AM - Thursday

Warsaw, Paris, Prague, Rome, Berlin, Medjugorje2:00 AM - Thursday

London, Dublin1:00 AM - Thursday

To Make Your Comment Click Here

Encourage all you know to sign up for MejList in order to be kept updated on the latest and crucial information on Medjugorje. must have your donation to stay online.
Who is behind
What is

©SJP Lic. • This may be reproduced and redistributed provided that the content is copied in its entirety, including graphics, pictures, captions, etc. and credit given to and Caritas of Birmingham. Also, permission is granted to quote from blogs, news sources, or other websites as long as it is referenced to of Birmingham.

Near the Manger

Mary Vitamin for
Christmas Day
Topic: What did the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Joseph do near the manger?
Cure of Ars
 "They looked at, contemplated and admired the Christ child. That is all they did. They were in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament exposed on the altar of the manger. They blessed and thanked God who gave us his Son out of His love for us. Nobody will ever be able to understand or explain what went on inside Mary at that time."
From A Moment With Mary
Fr. Gabriel Pellettieri, FI
What do we learn from the three main characters of the cave in Bethlehem?
"Jesus, Our Lady and St. Joseph –incomparable teachers of every virtue –offer us sublime examples of poverty, virginity and humility at the moment of the birth of the Divine Child.
St. Joseph teaches us to be poor, that is, to be lacking in everything, at times even in what is necessary.
Indeed, he chose the poverty of a cave, not having the means to provide for a better and more dignified childbirth.
Our Lady, in her virginal childbirth, teaches us to be pure: chaste in soul and in body, in thoughts, desires and actions.
Finally, great is the lesson in humility that the Baby Jesus bestows upon us from His poor cradle. The Creator of the universe humbles Himself to the point of desiring to be born in a cave and to be laid in a manger –in reality, a box fro which horses and cattle eat—hidden from all, in a small town of Palestine."
Who is Mary? (Academy of the Immaculate: 2001), 46.
Today I will pause in front of the manger, in imitation of Our Lady, I will make a spiritual Communion and pray that my heart and soul may be a little heaven, another manger, where He can abide.
Marian Vow:
St. Maximilian Kolbe
"Our life must be an extension on this earth of Jesus' life by means of Mary"
(from a  conference on July 5, 1936).
  I give this resolution to the Blessed Virgin Mary.
 Thanks be to God for graces received.

Prisoner of Love

Mark Mallett

—Spiritual Food For Thought—

Prisoner of Love

"Baby Jesus" by Deborah Woodall


HE comes to us as a baby… gently, quietly, helplessly. He does not arrive with a retinue of guards or with an overwhelming apparition. He comes as an infant, his hands and feet powerless to hurt anyone. He comes as if to say,

I have not come to condemn you, but to give you life.

A baby. A prisoner of love. 

When His enemies took His life, this King became once again like a baby: His hands and feet nailed to a tree, powerless to hurt anyone. He dies this way as if to say,

I have not come to condemn you, but to give you life.

A crucified man. A prisoner of love.

And now this King comes to you again like a baby, this time in the disguise of bread, His hands and feet powerless to hurt anyone. He comes this way, willing to be handled by His creatures, as if to say,

I have not come to condemn you, but to give you life.

A prisoner of love.

But brother and sister, you have the power to set this Prisoner free. For this Baby is crying for a place to lay His head; the Crucified One is thirsting for a drink of love; and the Bread of Life is longing to be consumed by a soul.

But do not think He is content with just that. For your hands and feet are not powerless. Through you, He desires to preach good news to the poor, to proclaim liberty to the captives, to open the eyes of the blind, and let the oppressed go free.

To make you, and the world if possible, a prisoner of Love.


Published in: DAILY JOURNAL, SPIRITUALITY | on December 25th, 2007 |


And Jesus being baptized, forthwith came out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened to him: and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove, and coming upon him. And behold a voice from heaven saying: This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. (Matt. 3:16-17)

THE TESTIMONY OF HEAVEN: The opening of heaven, the appearance of the Holy Ghost, and the voice from above all served to place Jesus before the people as the promised Redeemer, and to give them faith in His divine mission.

[From 'A Practical Commentary on Holy Scripture' by Bishop Knecht, D.D.]
(1899 Douay-Rheims Bible)

Monday, December 24, 2007


Cross Mountain © Caritas of Birmingham Monday
December 24, 2007


Just For You and Your Family to Read Tonight for Christmas Eve
From a Friend of Medjugorje

Christmas is about rebirth. Creation has stood still, throughout the centuries, on Christmas night. Even raging battles between nations would stop, and soldiers would pause and recollect while the guns fell silent on that Holy Night that comes once a year.

It was December of 1914 and what became known as the Great War had started four months earlier. Millions of men from all over Europe had responded wholeheartedly to the call to arms. No one believed the war would go much longer than a couple of months. Surely, they thought, it would be over before Christmas. But at the approach of winter, thousands of soldiers had already been killed on the battlefield and the hope of "peace on earth" for Christmas died with them.

The Allied Troops (Belgium, France, and Britain) were locked in a standoff with the Germans. Soldiers on both sides lined up in deep, narrow trenches. In between the two armies was a short lonely stretch of ground aptly named No Man's Land only as wide as two football fields, but in some places only 30 yards separated the enemy soldiers from each other. They were so near in some places that they could hear each other's conversations, an eerie and frightening reality. The shooting and killing, therefore, was often fierce.

Christmas Eve was bitterly cold. Though families had sent packages to their soldiers to bring them a little Christmas cheer, there was little peace or comfort on the front lines of the war on this Christmas night. Suddenly a strange sound was heard. Ears strained to comprehend what it was. The sweetness was shocking. It was singing in German. The words were unfamiliar but the tune was universally known. "Stille Nacht" – "Silent Night".

And then a remarkable, miraculous thing happened. Others joined in from the other side of the short battlefield and a chorus of voices were heard from both sides of the line. Then more and more began to sing. "Silent Night" led into "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen". Then both sides stood up and cautiously stared at each other. And somehow, in the middle of No Man's Land where dead bodies lay everywhere, a miraculous peace broke out. The enemy soldiers came together and for a brief moment became brothers. Christmas packages were opened and shared with each other. A Christmas tree was lit with candles and a soccer ball came out of the trenches and a lively game ensued. All along the front line of battle, truces were made and as many as 100,000 soldiers are said to have participated. The following are some recorded eyewitness accounts from diaries and letters:

Albert Moren, a seventeen-year-old British private, wrote: "It was a beautiful moonlit night, frost on the ground, white almost everywhere; and…there was a lot of commotion in the German trenches and then there were those lights – I don't know what they were. And then they sang "Silent Night" – "Stille Nacht."

Corporal John Ferguson, a Scotsman, wrote: "…What a sight – little groups of Germans and British extending almost the length of our front!…Where they couldn't talk the language they were making themselves understood by signs, and everyone seemed to be getting on nicely. Here we were laughing and chatting to men whom only a few hours ago we were trying to kill!"

Kurt Zehmisch, a German soldier, wrote in his diary: "The English brought a soccer ball from the trenches, and pretty soon a lively game ensued. How marvelously wonderful, yet how strange it was. The English officers felt the same way about it. Thus Christmas, the celebration of Love, managed to bring mortal enemies together as friends for a time."

After the miraculous Silent Night, the generals ordered the fighting to resume – which it did. Soldiers who fraternized with each other were now having to kill each other again.

This incredible true story is from the book Silent Night, by Stanley Weintraub and shows the power of who laid in the crib. Our Lady desires this peace to break out all over the earth.

Christmas is a time for man to take his eyes off the destruction and crosses and look with joy and love upon the Infant in the manger. It is a time of love. Babies are easy to love, and each year, since 1981, Our Lady has come on December 25, with Her baby Son, Jesus, in Her arms, physically present in the Flesh, no different than when He was here 2,000 years ago. We, of the present generation, have had what centuries passed have not; the little Infant Jesus, for the past 26 years, every Christmas appears upon the earth. Nothing is more endearing than meditating upon the Nativity scene. The Medjugorje visionary, Marija's heart was pierced through with joy one Christmas early in the apparitions, when little Jesus turned His head, looked at the six visionaries, and winked. Knowing an infant does not have the capability of doing that, it wounded her heart as She realized the Baby was truly Jesus, God Himself.

The one thing needed at Christmas time, more than anything else, is love. While the world goes towards materialism seeking to fill their emptiness, there is the need to bring love, be love, and spread love. There are people in the world who wish evil for you, who wish you to be hurt, and even while doing evil, deceive themselves that they are doing good, be they a family member, neighbor or enemy. Yet, we are called to love.

July 31, 1986

"Dear children, hatred gives birth to dissensions and does not regard anyone or anything. I call you always to bring harmony and peace. Especially, dear children, in the place where you live, act with love. Let your only instrument always be love. By love turn everything into good which satan desires to destroy and possess…"

We should approach the birth of Jesus and celebrate this Christmas with hope and prayers for renewal of all creation. And from the Bedroom where Our Lady appeared in Alabama, Our Lady said:

December 25, 1988

"Dear children, I call you to peace. Live it in your heart and all around you so that all will know peace – peace which does not come from you but from God. Little children, today is a great day! Rejoice with me! Glorify the Nativity of Jesus through the peace that I give. It is for this peace that I have come as your Mother, Queen of Peace. Today I give you my Special Blessing. Bring it to all creation, so that all creation will know peace…"

A later Silent Night in the loft of the house, the Virgin Mary appeared, holding the same Infant She held 2000 years ago in the stable of Bethlehem, only this time it was Birmingham.

We pray for you, and we encourage you to bow before the humble manger and contemplate the Wonder of Creation. Go out and look at the stars and, in wonderment, think about what generations before us could only dream of. That reality of the Queen of Heaven being with us for over 26 years, and this Christmas again, She will bring the Center of Creation to the earth to bless it. May peace come to you as you ponder this grace. Prepare for it on your knees at 10:40 a.m. CST, December 25th, when the Infant Jesus, while in His Mother's arms, in the flesh at that moment this Christmas, will raise His hand to bless all upon the earth. May all creation be blessed and renewed. This Christmas, remember us as we remember you, and that all that Our Lady wants birthed for the New Year may be realized. Have a Merry and Blessed Christmas!

In the love of the little Jesus,
Mary, and Joseph,
A Friend of Medjugorje
On Behalf of Caritas of Birmimgham
Operated by the Community of Caritas

Your Time ZoneApparition Time

Eastern Time11:40 AM - Tuesday (December 25)

Central Time10:40 AM - Tuesday

Mountain Time9:40 AM - Tuesday

Pacific Time8:40 AM - Tuesday

Hawaii Time7:40 AM - Tuesday

Brazil Time1:40 PM - Tuesday

Sydney, Australia3:40 PM - Tuesday

Seoul12:40 AM - Wednesday (December 26)

Beijing, Singapore11:40 PM - Tuesday (December 25)

Calcutta11:10 PM - Tuesday

Baghdad, Moscow7:40 PM - Tuesday

Jerusalem, Athens, Cairo6:40 PM - Tuesday

Warsaw, Paris, Prague, Rome, Berlin, Medjugorje5:40 PM - Tuesday

London, Dublin4:40 PM - Tuesday

To Make Your Comment Click Here

Encourage all you know to sign up for MejList in order to be kept updated on the latest and crucial information on Medjugorje. must have your donation to stay online.
Who is behind
What is

©SJP Lic. • This may be reproduced and redistributed provided that the content is copied in its entirety, including graphics, pictures, captions, etc. and credit given to and Caritas of Birmingham. Also, permission is granted to quote from blogs, news sources, or other websites as long as it is referenced to of Birmingham.

Meditations for the Novena for Christmas


December 24.

Saint Joseph goes to Bethlehem with His Holy Spouse.

Ascendit autem et Joseph . . ., ut profiteretur cum Maria desponsata sibi uxore praegnante.
"And Joseph also went up . . . to be enrolled with Mary his espoused wife, who was with child." (St. Luke ii. 4)

God had decreed that His Son should be born not in the house of Joseph, but in a cavern and stable of beasts, in the poorest and most painful was that a child can be born; and therefore He caused Caesar to publish an edict, by which people were commanded to go and enroll themselves, every one in his own city whence he drew his origin.

When Joseph heard this order, he was much agitated as to whether he should take with him or leave behind the Virgin Mother, as she was now so near childbirth. My spouse and my lady, said he to her, on the one hand, I do not wish to leave you alone; on the other, if I take you with me, I am much afflicted at the thought of all that you will have to suffer during this long journey, and in such severe weather. My poverty will not permit me to conduct you with that comfort which you require. But Mary answers him, and tries to give him courage with these words: My Joseph, do not fear. I will go with you; the Lord will assist us. She knew, both by divine inspiration, and also because she was well versed in the prophecy of Micheas, that the divine Infant was to be born in Bethlehem. She therefore takes the swaddling-clothes, and the other miserable garments already prepared, and departs with Joseph. And Joseph also went up . . . to be enrolled with Mary.

Let us now consider all the devout and holy discourses which these two holy spouses must have held together during this journey concerning the mercy, goodness, and love of the divine Word, who was shortly to be born, and to appear on the earth for the salvation of men. Let us also consider the praises, the benedictions, the thanksgivings, the acts of humility and love, which these two illustrious pilgrims uttered on the way. This holy Virgin, s soon to become a mother, certainly suffered much in so long a journey, made in the middle of winter, and over rough roads; but she suffered with peace and with love. She offered to God all these her trials, uniting them to those of Jesus, whom she carried in her womb.

Oh, let us unite ourselves also, and let us accompany Mary and Joseph in the journey of our life; and, with them, let us accompany the King of Heaven, who is born in a cave, and makes His first appearance in the world as an Infant, but as the poorest and most forsaken Infant that ever was born amongst men. And let us beseech Jesus, Mary, and Joseph that, through the merits of the pains which they suffered in this journey, they would accompany us in the journey that we are making to eternity. Oh, blessed shall we be if, in life and in death, we keep company with these three great personages, and are always accompanied by Them!
[St. Alphonsus de Liguori]