The 30 Franciscan Martyrs of Siroke Brijeg

Thousands of pilgrims visit the Franciscan Monastery in Široki Brijeg every year, about one hour distant from Međugorje.

 On 7th February 1945 the Communist soldiers arrived and said “God is dead, there is no God, there is no Pope, there is no Church, there is no need of you, you also go out in the world and work.”The communists forgot that the Franciscans were working, most of the Franciscans were teaching in the adjoining school. Some of the Franciscans were famous professors and had written books.
 The communists asked them to remove their habits. The Franciscans refused. One angry soldier took the Crucifix and threw it on the floor. He said, “you can now choose either life or death.” Each of the Franciscans knelt down, embraced the Crucifix and said, “You are my God and my All.” The thirty Franciscans were taken out and slaughtered and their bodies burned in a nearby cave where their remains lay for many years. Today they are buried inside the Franciscan church. In our Gospel today Jesus said, “if anyone declares himself for me in the presence of men, I will declare myself for him in the presence of my Father in heaven.” The thirty Franciscan martyrs of Široki Brijeg are a powerful example of declaring oneself in the presence of others for Jesus. They lived something else Jesus also said in the Gospel, “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; fear him rather who can destroy both body and soul in hell.”
Witnessing to Jesus and following God’s way helps others who are lacking courage to follow Jesus. 

One of the soldiers in the firing squad at Široki Brijeg later said, “Since I was a child, in my family, I had always heard from my mother that God exists. To the contrary, Stalin, Lenin, Tito had always asserted and taught each one of us: there is no God. God does not exist! But when I stood in front of the martyrs of Široki Brijeg and I saw how those friars faced death, praying and blessing their persecutors, asking God forgive the faults of their executioners, it was then that I recalled to my mind the words of my mother and I thought that my mother was right: God exists!”

 That soldier converted and now he has a son a priest and a daughter a nun. As I said, witnessing to Jesus and following God’s way also helps others in the crowd who are lacking the courage to follow Jesus.



"How much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?" -Luke 11:13

I received the Holy Spirit at my Baptism as an infant and at my Confirmation as a thirteen-year-old. As a young adult, I participated in a Life in the Spirit seminar and was baptized in the Holy Spirit. This experience transformed my life. The Spirit opened my mind to understand the Bible (Lk 24:45). After receiving the Spirit in this new way, Scripture jumped off the page for me. God's Word became so real that it was as if I could see everything along with the original biblical authors. In the decades that followed, the Holy Spirit has given me gifts, such as prophecy and teaching, which help change others' lives. I praise and thank God, the Holy Spirit, for dwelling in me and in so many others in the Church!

Matthew's Gospel reads, "how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to anyone who asks Him!" (Mt 7:11) Luke, however, replaces "good things" with the "Holy Spirit" (Lk 11:13). The Holy Spirit also:
   * convicts us of our sins (Jn 16:8), fights against our flesh (Gal 5:17), and leads us to holiness, if we are docile to Him,
   * guides us to all truth (Jn 16:13),
   * overcomes sin (Gal 5:16) and fear (2 Tm 1:6-8),
   * leads us to pray (Rm 8:26), praise, and worship the Lord in power and awe,
   * brings unity with our families and the Church (Eph 4:3).

"Receive the Holy Spirit" (Jn 20:22) and "do not stifle the Spirit" (1 Thes 5:19). "Since we live by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit's lead" (Gal 5:25). Come, Holy Spirit!

 Holy Spirit, lead the Church to a new Pentecost.

 "For you who fear My name, there will arise the sun of justice with its healing rays." -Mal 3:20



"He Who has brought disaster upon you will, in saving you, bring you back enduring joy." -Baruch 4:29

 Most people have suffered disasters in their lives. Some of these have been caused by their own sins. If we would seek the Lord ten times more zealously than we strayed from Him, He would save us from disaster and bring us back a joy that this time will last (Bar 4:28). The Lord turns all things, even disasters, to the good for those who love Him (Rm 8:28). If we repent and seek the Lord, we will understand that the sufferings of the present are "nothing compared with the glory to be revealed in us" (Rm 8:18).

We may go forth weeping, but we'll come back rejoicing (Ps 126:6). The Lord will change our mourning into dancing, our sackcloth into robes of gladness (Ps 30:12), and our darkness into dawn (Ps 30:6). The Lord turned Job's many disasters into double blessings. "The Lord even gave to Job twice as much as he had before" (Jb 42:10). Moreover, the Father turned the ultimate disaster of His Son's death on the cross to the ultimate joy of His resurrection from the dead. Disaster, sin, and death are not the final words. Rather, joy, salvation, and life reign supreme for those who have given their lives to Jesus

  Father, I trust You even in the worst circumstances of my life. Promise: "Jesus rejoiced in the Holy Spirit and said: 'I offer You praise, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because what You have hidden from the learned and the clever You have revealed to the merest children.' " -Lk 10:21


Fr. Peter Rookey-Pilgrimage of Love

Published on Sep 9, 2015
Fr. Peter Rookey passed away one year ago on 9-10-14. We remember him in a special way at this time. He traveled to the Holy Land in 2010, and this documentary of his pilgrimage there was produced in his honor by Chuck Neff and Our Sorrowful Mother's Ministry. Annie Karto sings the theme song in this film. I hope you will be very blessed by viewing it. Father is now with the Lord and Our Lady. We pray for his intercession before God's throne for our intentions. He was truly a gift from above for all of us who knew him. We love you, Fr. Peter!!!

Medjugorje: Our Lady's message to Mirjana of October 2, 2015

Today, October 2, 2015, Our Lady appeared to the visionary Mirjana at the Blue Cross in Medjugorje and delivered the following message:

"Dear children, I am here among you to encourage you, to fill you with my love and to call you anew to be witnesses of the love of my Son. Many of my children do not have hope, they do not have peace, they do not have love. They are seeking my Son, but do not know how and where to find Him. My Son is opening wide His arms to them, and you are to help them to come to His embrace. My children, that is why you must pray for love. You must pray very, very much to have all the more love, because love conquers death and makes life last. Apostles of my love, my children, with an honest and simple heart unite in prayer regardless of how far you are from each other. Encourage each other in spiritual growth as I am encouraging you. I am watching over you and am with you whenever you think of me. Pray also for your shepherds, for those who renounced everything for the sake of my Son and for your sake. Love them and pray for them. The Heavenly Father is listening to your prayers. Thank you."


The Holy Spirit, is "God reminding us



Pope: the Holy Spirit, the "unknown of our faith," is "God reminding us" of our salvation.

 Francis reflects on the remarks of a group of Christians from Ephesus: "we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit." Even today, "many Christians do not know who the Holy Spirit is, what the Holy Spirit is." The Spirit is "God active in us," a "God who helps us remember" who "awakens our memory." Jesus himself says to the Apostles before Pentecost: the Spirit that God will send in my name, "will remind you of everything I have said."
http://www.asianews.it/files/img/F___S._Marta_4.jpgVatican City (AsiaNews) - The Holy Spirit is "God who helps us remember," who invokes in us the "memory" of salvation history and the gifts we have received and without which Christians risk slipping into idolatry. This was the lesson that Pope Francis drew from the Acts of the Apostles during the Mass celebrated this morning at the Casa Santa Marta. The Pope was reflecting on the episode which recounts the remarks of a group of Christians of Ephesus: "we have never even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.

This, said the Pope - according to Vatican Radio - is not just "something from the early community",  "the Holy Spirit has always been somewhat the 'unknown' of our faith." "Even now, many Christians do not know who the Holy Spirit is, what the Holy Spirit is. And you sometimes hear: 'But I get on well enough with the Father and with Son, because I pray the Our Father to the Father, I have communion with the Son, but I do not know what to do with the Holy Spirit. . .' Or people say, 'The Holy Spirit is the dove, the one that gives us the seven gifts.' But in this way the poor Holy Spirit always comes last and finds no place in our lives"

Instead, the Holy Spirit is a "God active in us", "God who helps us remember," who "awakens our memory." Jesus himself explains this to the Apostles before Pentecost: the Spirit that God will send in my name, "will remind you of everything I have said." The opposite, he said, would lead the Christian down a dangerous path. "A Christian without memory is not a true Christian: he or she is a prisoner of circumstance, of the moment, a man or woman who has no history. He or she does have a history, but does not how to enter into history. It is the Spirit that teaches us how to enter into history. Historical memory ... When in the Letter to the Hebrews, the author says: 'Remember your fathers in the faith' - memory; 'remember the early days of your faith, how you were courageous' - memory. A memory of our life, of our history, a memory of the moment when we had the grace of meeting Jesus, the memory of all that Jesus has told us."

"That memory that comes from the heart, that is a grace of the Holy Spirit," Pope Francis vigorously repeated. He said remembering, "also means remembering one's own misery, that which makes us slaves, and together with them, the grace of God that redeems us from our miseries".

 " And when a little vanity creeps in, when someone believes themselves to be a winner of the 'Nobel Prize for Holiness," then memory is also good for us: 'But ... remember where I took you from, the very least of the flock. You were behind, in the flock.' Memory is a great grace, and when a Christian has no memory - this is a hard thing, but it's true - he is not a Christian, he is an idolater. Because he is before a God that has no road, that does not know how to move forward on the road. Our God is moving forward on the road with us, He is among us, He walks with us. He saves us. He makes history with us. Be mindful of all that, and life becomes more fruitful, with the grace of memory.". "

Pope Francis then concluded with an invitation to Christians to ask the grace of memory, so that they will never be a people that forgets the paths that have been taken, "that they will not forget the graces of their lives; that they will not forget the forgiveness of their sins; that they will not forget that they were slaves and the Lord has saved them. "

Catholic Charismatic Renewal and Pope Francis - HOSSANA

Charismatic Catholics pray over Pope Francis


Medjugorje: - Marriage Prayer

Now let me tell you about a most beautiful tradition the Croatian people have for marriages.

In the town of Siroki-Brijeg, not one single divorce has been recorded among its 13,000 inhabitants. Not one single family has broken up in living memory. Does Herzegovina enjoy a special favor from heaven? Is there a magic formula that keeps the demon of division at bay?

The answer is very simple! For centuries, because of the pressure from the Turks and then the Communists, the people suffered cruelly as their Christian faith was always threatened. They knew through experience that salvation comes through the Cross of Christ. It does not come from disarmament plans, from humanitarian aid or peace treaties, even if these things may bring limited benefits. The source of salvation is the Cross of Christ! These people possess a wisdom that does not allow them to be duped over questions of life and death. That is why they have indissolubly linked marriage with the Cross of Christ. They have founded marriage, which brings forth human life, on the Cross, which brings forth divine life.

The Croatian marriage tradition is so beautiful that it is beginning to take hold in Europe and America!

When a young couple is preparing for marriage, they are not told that they have found the ideal partner. No! What does the priest say?

"You have found your cross. And it is a cross to be loved, to be carried, a cross not to be thrown away, but to be cherished."

In Herzegovina, the Cross represents the greatest love and the crucifix is the treasure of the home.

When the bride and groom set off for the church, they bring a crucifix with them. The priest blesses the crucifix, which takes on a central role during the exchange of vows. The bride places her right hand on the crucifix and the groom places his hand over hers. Thus the two hands are bound together on the cross. The priest covers their hands with his stole as they proclaim their vows to be faithful, according to the rites of the Church.

  Fr. Jozo Zovko explains that the bride and groom do not then kiss each other, they rather kiss the cross. They know that they are kissing the source of love. Anyone close enough to see their two hands joined over the cross understands clearly that if the husband abandons his wife or if the wife abandons her husband, they let go of the cross. And if they abandon the cross, they have nothing left. They have lost everything for they have abandoned Jesus. They have lost Jesus.

After the ceremony, the newlyweds bring the crucifix back and give it a place of honor in their home. It becomes the focal point of family prayer, for the young couple believes deeply that the family is born of the Cross. When a trouble arises, or if a conflict breaks out, it is before this cross that they will seek help. They will not go to a lawyer, they will not consult a fortune-teller or an astrologer, they will not rely on a psychologist to solve the problem. No, they will go straight before their Jesus, before the cross. They'll get on their knees there and in front of Jesus, they will weep their tears and pour out their hearts, and above all exchange their forgiveness. They will not go to sleep with a heavy heart because they will have turned to their Jesus, the only One who has the power to save.

They will teach their children to kiss the cross every day and not to go to sleep like pagans without having thanked Jesus first. As for the children, as far back as they can remember, Jesus has always been the friend of the family, respected and embraced. They say "nighty-night" to Jesus and kiss the cross.
 (As Fr. Jozo says, "They go to sleep with Jesus, not with a teddy bear!"). They know that Jesus is holding them in his arms and that there is nothing to be afraid of, and their fears melt away in their kiss to Jesus.

Dearest Gospa, please extend the blessing of this beautiful marriage to the whole family of your children!

Sr. Emmanuel February 1, 2002

This is the prayer that they use in Medjugorje while holding the Crucifix during the marriage ceremony. ............................................................................

Before_______and_______say their vows to one another, I want to bless this crucifix, which they hold as they say their vows (priest says this)

The Crucifix is the symbol of our Christian faith, ___________ and _________ will keep this crucifix as a precious memento placing it in a special place in their home. In the years ahead, hopefully this will be their place of family prayer; the place where they will bring to the Lord their sorrows and their joys, their hopes and their disappointments.

This crucifix will be a constant reminder to them that we all have to die, in order to live. _________ and __________ will have to die to their individual single ways of life, in order to come to a new life together.

This crucifix will be a sign to them that no matter what the offense, no matter what the hurt, there is forgiveness. It will be a sign that no matter how bad things get, there is hope. It will be a sign to them that
love is more important than any issue in their lives.

And so we bless this crucifix and ask that it be a blessing on the home of __________and ___________.

(After blessing the Crucifix)

I hold the base of this crucifix and bow as the representative of all of you in the Church, the Body of Christ, ___________and________, please place your hands together over the Body of Christ as you say your vows to one another.

(After saying their vows the Bride and Groom can each kiss the crucifix. It is then placed on the altar for the rest of the mass.)

For Those Who Are Already Married:....

When we tell the pilgrims what a wonderful tradition Croatians have for the sacrament of marriage, people who are already married express some sadness.  They tell us that if they had known, they would have loved to apply this tradition to their own wedding! Fortunately, with the Living God, nothing is ever too late!

Here is what we suggest to those who want to take advantage of the grace: for your wedding anniversary, ask your priest the favor of renewing your wedding promises during the parish mass, in a more or less discreet manner, according to what the priest judges appropriate. On this day, he will bless you as a couple.

 Bring a beautiful crucifix with you as the Croatians do. The priest will put it in his hand, on top of his stole, the wife will put her hand on the cross and the husband will put his hand on his spouse's hand. Then, pronounce your prayer and renew your vows to each other.

 Jesus will be the cement of your unity and your greatest friend. Your love will be grounded and anchored on His fidelity to communicate to you the Divine love He has in store for your family. Jesus will be your center, your rock and your citadel! Back home, hang up the Cross on your bedroom wall. Pray together every night in front of the Cross and, if necessary, ask each other for forgiveness. Then, no need to fear the Destroyer for, as St Paul tells us: "If God is for us, who will be against us ?!"


The Brown Scaplar

Why Satan Hates the Brown Scapular


July 16th is the feast day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, so it is fitting to examine a mighty spiritual weapon connected with this devotion to the Blessed Mother: the Brown Scapular. There are many “promises” to the wearers of this scapular, but we must always keep in mind that the Brown Scapular is NOT a lucky “charm” that grants someone access to eternal life no matter what kind of life they live.
First of all, here is a quick history of the Brown Scapular:
[K]nown as the Brown Scapular, this is the best known, most celebrated, and most widespread of the small scapulars. It is spoken of as “the Scapular”, and the “feast of the Scapular” is that of Our Lady of Mount Carmel on 16 July. It is probably the oldest scapular and served as the prototype of the others. According to a pious tradition the Blessed Virgin appeared to St. Simon Stock at Cambridge, England, on Sunday, 16 July, 1251. In answer to his appeal for help for his oppressed order, she appeared to him with a scapular in her hand and said: “Take, beloved son this scapular of thy order as a badge of my confraternity and for thee and all Carmelites a special sign of grace; whoever dies in this garment, will not suffer everlasting fire. It is the sign of salvation, a safeguard in dangers, a pledge of peace and of the covenant“….And, even though there is here no direct reference to the members of the scapular confraternity, indirectly the promise is extended to all who from devotion to the Mother of God should wear her habit or badge, like true Christians, until death, and be thus as it were affiliated to the Carmelite Order. (Catholic Encyclopedia, emphasis added)
Our Lady grants to the wearers of this scapular particular “privileges:”
For this privilege declares nothing else than that all those who out of true veneration and love for the Blessed Virgin constantly wear the scapular in a spirit of fidelity and confiding faith, after they have been placed by the Church itself with this habit or badge under the special protection of the Mother of God, shall enjoy this special protection in the matter and crisis which most concerns them for time and eternity. Whoever, therefore, even though he be now a sinner, wears the badge of the Mother of God throughout life as her faithful servant, not presumptuously relying on the scapular as on a miraculous amulet, but trustfully confiding in the power and goodness of Mary, may securely hope that Mary will through her powerful and motherly intercession procure for him all the necessary graces for true conversion and for perseverance in good. Such is the meaning and importance of the first privilege of the Carmelite Scapular, which is wont to be expressed in the words: “whoever wears the scapular until death, will be preserved from hell”. (Catholic Encyclopedia, emphasis added)
A “habit” in more ways than one
St. John Paul II exhorted those who wear the Brown Scapular to take part in the special graces involved with wearing it:
Therefore two truths are evoked by the sign of the Scapular: on the one hand, the constant protection of the Blessed Virgin, not only on life’s journey, but also at the moment of passing into the fullness of eternal glory; on the other, the awareness that devotion to her cannot be limited to prayers and tributes in her honour on certain occasions, but must become a “habit”, that is, a permanent orientation of one’s own Christian conduct, woven of prayer and interior life, through frequent reception of the sacraments and the concrete practice of the spiritual and corporal works of mercy. In this way the Scapular becomes a sign of the “covenant” and reciprocal communion between Mary and the faithful: indeed, it concretely translates the gift of his Mother, which Jesus gave on the Cross to John and, through him, to all of us, and the entrustment of the beloved Apostle and of us to her, who became our spiritual Mother. (Message to Carmelite Community)
Suffice to say, the Brown Scapular is a powerful aid to those who devoutly wear it and call upon Our Lady’s help in time of need. There are numerous stories that attest to the miraculous nature of the Brown Scapular. In particular, there is one story that show how much Satan hates the Brown Scapular:
You will understand why the devil works against those who promote the Scapular when you hear the story of Venerable Francis Ypes. One day his Scapular fell off. As he replaced it, the devil howled, “Take off the habit which snatches so many souls from us!” Then and there Francis made the devil admit that there are three things which the demons are most afraid of: the Holy Name of Jesus, the Holy Name of Mary, and the Holy Scapular of Carmel. To that list we could add: the Holy Rosary.
The great St. Peter Claver was another of God‟s heroes who used the Scapular to good advantage. Every month a shipment of 1000 slaves would arrive at Cartegena, Colombia, South America. St. Peter used to insure the salvation of his converts. First, he organized catechists to give them instructions. Then, he saw to it that they were baptized and clothed with the Scapular. Some ecclesiastics accused the Saint of indiscreet zeal, but St. Peter was confident that Mary would watch over each of his more than 300,000 converts! (Garment of Grace, emphasis added)
However, we must not believe that simply wearing the Brown Scapular without a strong commitment to following God will someone protect us from all harm and the eternal fires of Hell. Here is a short story that shows how if we wear the Brown Scapular and are refuse to lead a holy life, we will not be found wearing it when we die:
During the Spanish civil war in the 1930‟s, seven Communists were sentenced to death because of their crimes. A Carmelite priest tried to prepare the men for death; they refused. As a last resort, he brought the men cigarettes, food and wine, assuring them that he would not talk religion. In a short while, they were all friendly, so he asked them for one small favor: “Will you permit me to place a Scapular on each of you?” Six agreed; one refused. Soon all Scapular wearers went to confession. The seventh continued to refuse. Only to please them, he put on a Scapular, he would do nothing more. Morning came, and as the moment of execution drew near, the seventh man made it clear that he was not going to ask for the priest. Although wearing the Scapular, he was determined to go to his death an enemy of God. Finally, the command was given, the firing squad did its deadly work, and seven lifeless bodies lay sprawled in the dust.Mysteriously, a Scapular was found approximately 50 paces from the bodies.Six men died WITH Mary‟s Scapular; the seventh died WITHOUT the Scapular. Blessed Claude gives us the solution to the mystery of the missing Scapular: “You ask, ‘What if I desire to die in my sins?’ I answer, ‘Then you will die in your sins, BUT YOU WILL NOT DIE IN YOUR SCAPULAR.'” Blessed Claude tells the story of a man who tried to drown himself three times. He was rescued against his will. At last he realized that he was wearing his Scapular. Determined to take his life, he tore the Scapular from his neck and leaped into the water. Without Mary‟s protective garment he accomplished his wish, and died in his sins. (Garment of Grace, emphasis added)
So yes, the Brown Scapular is a powerful weapon against Satan and can help us along the road to holiness, but it is not “magic” and if we refuse to lead a life divorced from sin, the Scapular will not be found on us when we die.
We must devoutly wear it, and choose to serve God and the Blessed Virgin Mary. The Brown Scapular can amplify our spiritual life and help us in our time of greatest need.
[As a practical note, the Brown Scapular must be 100% brown (or black) wool. There is no particular requirement in terms of the image or words on the scapular, just that the fabric be wool. If you are looking to buy a scapular, try out these handmade scapulars, made by Carmelite nuns. If you need to be enrolled into the Brown Scapular, any priest has the authority to do it. Here are the enrollment prayers. After enrollment, there is no need for additional blessings for future replacement scapulars.]


The Virgin Mary-Spouse of the Holy Spirit

Saint Faustina and the Holy Spirit

 This article is used with permission from divinemercy.org
divine-mercy-imageAfter the Holy Spirit descended upon the apostles at Pentecost, they were not afraid. They were filled with holy boldness. The Catechism of the Catholic Church states: “Through His grace, the Holy Spirit is the first to awaken faith in us and to communicate to us the new life, which is to ‘know the Father and the One whom He has sent, Jesus Christ’” (CCC, 684).

When He does speak, which is often, the Spirit elicits from us fruits of obvious goodness. Saint Paul tells us, “Now the works of the flesh are plain: immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, selfishness, dissension, party spirit, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such there is no law” (Gal 5:19-23).

When we allow ourselves to be filled with the Holy Spirit, we become overshadowed by Him and begin to bear the fruits in our lives. We “bubble over” with love and joy, and minister by proclaiming the Good News to people. But we must be quiet and listen. Saint Faustina wrote, “Oh Spirit of God, Director of my soul, wise is he whom You have trained! But for the spirit of God to act in the soul, peace and recollection are needed” (Diary of St. Faustina, 145). And, “A noble and delicate soul…follows faithfully the faintest breath of the Holy Spirit; it rejoices in this Spiritual Guest and holds onto Him like a child to its mother” (148). That is why we must listen to hear the Holy Spirit, and we must be ready to be His instrument.

Since she was quiet in her soul and heard the Holy Spirit, St. Faustina, by definition, was a contemplative. She had an intuitive grasp of the importance of quiet and silence: “The silent soul is capable of attaining the closest union with God. It lives almost always under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. God works in a silent soul without hindrance” (477).

Charismatic in Her Joy
However, St. Faustina also was charismatic. She exuded and overflowed with the joy and love of God. She wrote, “Oh, if souls would only be willing to listen, at least a little, to the voice of conscience and the voice—that is, the inspirations—of the Holy Spirit! I say ‘at least a little,’ because once we open ourselves to the influence of the Holy Spirit, He Himself will fulfill what is lacking in us” (359). Earlier in the Diary, St. Faustina shares this gem about her interior life: “in my interior life I never reason; I do not analyze the ways in which God’s Spirit leads me. It is enough for me to know that I am loved and that I love” (293).

We must be filled with the love of God, and we will do His will only by following the Holy Spirit. If we do, we accomplish great things over all the earth: “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8).


Our Lady of Medjugorje's Messge of September 25, 2015

“Dear children! Also today I am praying to the Holy Spirit to fill your hearts with a strong faith. Prayer and faith will fill your heart with love and joy and you will be a sign for those who are far from God. Little children, encourage each other to prayer with the heart, so that prayer may fulfill your life; and each day, you, little children, will be, above all, witnesses of serving God in adoration and of your neighbor in need. I am with you and intercede for all of you. Thank you for having responded to my call.”


Lay Fast for Priest

When: Saturday, October 17, 2015 from Dawn until 3PM

Where: Around the world!

Adoration (1-2PM) and Divine Mercy Chaplet (3PM) at The National Shrine of Our Lady of LaSalette (Attleboro, MA)

“…prayer united with fasting is the most powerful force in human history.” – St. John Paul

On Line at www.annaprae.com


Beautiful Daughter

Alcohol Abuse: How does it start?

by Alberta Sequeira
JULY 19, 2015
Lori Water Raffing        Please, God, Not Two
I look at this picture of my beautiful daughter, Lori Cahill, and physically ache. How could a child who had everything be taken from me?
Here was a girl that was full of laughter, loved her family, had devoted friends, a son and a daughter who loved her, a good high-positon job, a joy to her parents …and gone from what…drinking, and possibly drugs, and hanging out with the wrong crowd.
My daughter started drinking in her last year of high school, or so I thought. Once she got out of school, she married and had her children. I thought her life was going well after losing her father at seventeen, I had forced her into an abortion at that age, and her friends were running wild with the family not being aware.
Lori never spoke back, entertained her friends at home and I thought all was wonderful. My other daughter, Debbie, had married, had a son and daughter and we were all close.
It wasn’t until Lori turned 37 years old, that all of us discovered she had a problem with drinking. She admitted herself into a substance abuse rehab three times and could not recover from her addiction.
Please, God, Not Two: This Killer Called Alcoholism was written after I lost my husband, Richard Lopes, and the demon returned to take her with him. Sadly, many families are losing their loved ones from addiction. It is such a useless death when there is help for them, but they can’t seem to hold on and desire the recovery. Good, happy, and loving children are dying worldwide from a disease that professionals are trying to find out how to stop this killer.
The gap will never be filled from losing Lori. Her two children still feel the pain along with her sister, who had been left with no other sibling. Lori’s daughter, Meagan, will be getting married December 5th with the emptiness of not having her mom look on with pride. How do we stop this sickness that is taking the lives of wonderful people?
I wrote about my loss in the sequel Please, God, Not Two and added my talks behind closed doors to substance abusers. They need to come out fighting and learn to love themselves again. So many think they are failures. These paths that they go down are not dead ends. They need to turn around and head for a life of happiness.
To start, they need to face their emotional problems and talk about them. That is the only way to heal. Forgive who hurt you and don’t allow them to keep you from being healthy.
Read the sequel and see how our enabling as family members only bring the addict deeper into their addiction.
Go to this link to order all books:


Prayer to the HOLY SPIRIT

A Prayer to the Holy Spirit written by Saint George Preca (A Maltese Priest 
canonised by Pope Benedict XVI in 2007)

Fr. John Randall, The Holy Spirit makes your Baptism come alive," he said. Then, like St. Paul, you can say, "It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me" (Galatians 2.20).

"It's exciting when that happens. Jesus becomes everything for you."

Teens, he said, don't want to attend Mass because they find it boring. Others claim the rosary is a dull prayer.

"When the Holy Spirit gets ahold of the Mass, it's not boring. When the Holy Spirit gets ahold of Eucharistic Adoration, it's not boring.

"Prayer is the most exciting thing in the world. Why? Because prayer is union with God."

The Holy Spirit makes things blossom and bloom," Father Randall said. "Where it is not, things die and wither. What the Holy Spirit does in the Church is the same thing he did to Mary. He implanted the Son of God into her womb so that Jesus came alive in her. When the Holy Spirit is in the Church, he makes Jesus come alive in the Church.

Pope Benedict sees the importance of the Holy Spirit to the life of the Church.  The pope said, "The most important thing in the Church today is that Catholics experience being baptized in the Holy Spirit."

Fr.Randall put the emphasis on "experience."


The Medjugorje Message: A love-match made in Medjugorje

The Medjugorje Message: A love-match made in Medjugorje: MaryTV is currently transmitting the testimony of a woman named Regina Carroll, from Galway in Ireland. Regina gives witness to an experien...


"You Will Receive Power"

"You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes down on you; then you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, yes, even to the ends of the earth." (Acts 1:8)

"Today, millions of Catholics in more than 115 countries are involved in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal. What accounts for this dramatic growth? Those involved in the Renewal say that God has touched them in some profound way, releasing the power of the Holy Spirit in their lives.

The goal of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal is to serve the mission of the Church by enabling people to live a renewed and Christian life in the power of the Holy Spirit. Every Christian is called to be charismatic – that is, to be equipped with gifts of service for the good of the Church. (1Cor.12)

In the Catholic Charismatic Renewal, Catholics speak of being "baptized in the Holy Spirit." This statement does not change the Catholic teaching about the Sacrament of Baptism. It simply means that the power of the Spirit received in the Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation often awaits a fuller "release" in the lives of many Christians."


Exaltation of the Holy Cross


"He humbled Himself, obediently accepting even death, death on a cross! Because of this, God highly exalted Him." -Philippians 2:8-9

John's Gospel particularly highlights the exaltation of the cross of Jesus. John proclaims that the cross is the catalyst for faith leading to eternal life (Jn 3:15-16), and where we finally recognize that Jesus is God (Jn 8:28-29).

As a subject of King Jesus, you are called to bear a daily cross (Lk 9:23). Do you carry your cross in such a way that it proclaims to everyone that "Jesus Christ is Lord"? (Phil 2:11) You are blessed with the unspeakable privilege of sharing in the victorious cross of King Jesus. Therefore, glory in the cross and carry your cross so as to triumph.

 King Jesus, grant that I may carry my cross in a way that proclaims You as Victor rather than a heartless taskmaster.

 "Yes, God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him may not die but may have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him." -Jn 3:16-17

 "We adore You, O Christ, and we praise You because by Your holy cross You have redeemed the world."
Video--Veneration of the Cross  https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=3&v=ejkFaKz2kRw


The Medjugorje Message: Joy of the Cross

The Medjugorje Message: Joy of the Cross: Dear children! For these days while you are joyfully celebrating the cross, I desire that your cross also would be a joy for you. Especially...


The true story of a man who saw Heaven, Hell and Purgatory

Published on Apr 29, 2015
The true story of a man who saw Heaven, Hell and Purgatory.

Father John Randall   introduces Marino Restrepo who gives witness to seeing Heaven, Hell and Purgatory. 


Archbishop Pearce remembered

Archbishop Pearce remembered for his spirit, devotion

PROVIDENCE — From the islands of the Western Pacific to the Vatican to the Diocese of Providence, The Most Reverend George H. Pearce, SM, Archbishop Emeritus of Suva, Fiji, was remembered for his dedication and charisma Friday during his funeral at the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul.
Archbishop Pearce died on Sunday, Aug. 30 at the age of 94. He first came to the diocese in 1977 after resigning as archbishop emeritus from the Metropolitan See of Suva in the Fiji Islands in April 1976. From 1983 to 1997 he served as a personal assistant to Bishop Louis E. Gelineau and was in residence at the Cathedral of SS. Peter and Paul during that time.

“His Holiness Pope Francis has learned with sadness of the death of Archbishop George H. Pearce and offers heartfelt condolences to all who mourn him in the hope of the resurrection,” Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State wrote in a communication to Bishop Thomas J. Tobin on Sept. 3.
“With gratitude for the many graces which accompanied the late Archbishop’s years of devoted missionary service as a member of the Marist Fathers and in the episcopal sees of Apia [Samoa] and Suva [Fiji], His Holiness commends his noble soul to the merciful embrace of Christ the Good Shepherd,” the Cardinal continued. “To those assembled for the Mass of Christian Burial, and to his family, his confreres and the faithful spiritually united with their prayers, the Holy Father cordially imparts his Apostolic Blessing as a pledge of consolation and strength in the Lord.”

Bishop Thomas J. Tobin served as principal celebrant during the Mass of Christian Burial, while Rev. Albert DiIanni, SM, served as homilist. In addition, several prelates from the Diocese of Providence, including Auxiliary Bishop Robert C. Evans and Emeritus Bishops Louis E. Gelineau, Robert E. Mulvee, Francis X. Roque and Ernest B. Boland, along with Emeritus Archbishop Daniel A. Cronin of Hartford; Auxiliary Bishop Christie Macaluso of Hartford; Bishop Robert J. McManus, of Worcester; and Emeritus Bishop Daniel Patrick Reilly of Norwich and Worcester; also celebrated the Mass.
Father Paul Frechette, SM, provincial of the Marist Fathers, along with several Marist priests and Father Michael Higgins, OFM, Archbishop Pearce’s nephew, also attended, as did about 40 diocesan priests and members of the Archbishop’s family and many others whose lives he touched during his ministry here.

Father DiIanni, a Marist Father, paid tribute in his homily to Archbishop Pearce’s extensive overseas service, which began in 1949 when he traveled to the Samoa Islands in the Pacific to begin serving as a missionary. “He always considered himself a Marist,” Father DiIanni said. “He was a humble and simple man who never put on airs. He dreamed of a life more peaceful, more bountiful, more beautiful than he had ever experienced.”“We’re grateful for the decades of service provided. He touched so many souls on behalf of Christ and his Church,” Bishop Tobin said.
Johnny Toma, a native of American Samoa who was first inspired by Archbishop Pearce in 1998 while attending John and Wales University in Providence, where the Archbishop was serving as a chaplain, made the trip up to attend the funeral from Silver Spring, Md., where he currently resides.

“I attended his Marian prayer groups,” recalled Toma, who wore over his suit a native traditional Samoan necklace made of coconut husks, known as ula pu’a, while his mother, Velonika Nikolao, wore a traditional flower in her hair.
“He was very holy and spiritual, a very simple man, and he was very good in Samoan,” added Toma, who sat in a front pew. The Archbishop had a special aptitude for learning languages, a skill that made him accessible to the diverse populations he served.
Sandra Gaumont, a lay Dominican who previously served as a campus minister at Johnson and Wales, recalled how humble Archbishop Pearce was.
“He was fixing a truck when they told him that was to become a bishop,” she said, relating a story the archbishop once told her.

She also appreciated his “very dry Maine sense of humor,” which made him very personable.
“He touched so many lives in Providence,” Gaumont said.
Downstairs in the cathedral hall, John Primeau arranged for a large display of story boards and artifacts from the archbishop’s decades of service to be available to provide insight into the fascinating and full life that he had lived.
Primeau, the president and founder of the North American Catholic Educational Programming Foundation, which produces Catholic radio and television programs, had worked extensively with Archbishop Pearce through the years. Along with his wife, the couple had taken the archbishop on many day trips in his later years, especially car rides for lobster dinner, a delicacy which he especially enjoyed.

He was a great preacher, along the lines of [the late] Father John Randall, very charismatic,” Primeau said.

Primeau smiled at the fact that Archbishop Pearce chose to be buried wearing his black sneakers.
An avid outdoor enthusiast who in his 80s once drove to Mount Washington in New Hampshire in the morning, hiked the treacherous Tuckerman Ravine route to the top before descending via the same route and driving back home before dinner time, Archbishop Pearce once offered a Holy Hour for Mary in the middle of the wilderness at Maine’s Baxter State Park.

“He had a great devotion to the Blessed Mother,” recalled Primeau, who was part of the group accompanying him on the two hour canoe trip to their campsite on the feast of the Assumption.
Primeau served as a pallbearer at the burial of Archbishop Pearce on Saturday, Sept. 5 at Sacred Heart Cemetery in Andover, Mass.         http://www.thericatholic.com/


Medjugorje Mirjana's apparition 02 September 2013 HD

Our Lady's apparition to Mirjana 02 September 2013

"Dear children, I love you all. All of you, all of my children, all of you are in my heart. All of you have my motherly love and I desire to lead all of you to come to know God's joy. This is why I am calling you. I need humble apostles who, with an open heart, will accept the Word of God and help others to comprehend the meaning of their life along side God's word. To be able to do this, my children, through prayer and fasting you must learn to listen with the heart and to learn to keep submitting yourselves. You must learn to keep rejecting everything that distances you from God's word and to yearn only for that which draws you closer to it.

 Do not be afraid. I am here. You are not alone. I am imploring the Holy Spirit to renew and strengthen you. I am imploring the Holy Spirit that, as you help others, you too may be healed. I am imploring Him that, through Him, you may be God's children and my apostles.

For the sake of Jesus, for the sake of my Son, love those whom He has called and long for the blessing only from the hands which He has consecrated. Do not permit evil to come to reign. Anew I repeat -- only along side your shepherds will my heart triumph. Do not permit evil to separate you from your shepherds. Thank you. "


2015 Day 3 Medjugorje Youth Festival - How great is Our God

Published on Aug 16, 2015
Medjugorje International choir singing How Great is Our God during Holy Communion

Love that is here cannot be described

„One feels here the presence of our Heavenly Mother and peace“

date: 01.09.2015.
Bernarda Brunović, from Switzerland, even though she is blind and cannot see the world around her, is very much grateful to God for the gift of life and she lives the fullness of life. Beranrda is a student of theology and is involved in singing. She comes frequently to Medjugorje, especially for the Youth Festival. „The faith was always at the first place in my life. We cannot do anything without God.
 Young people should not be ashamed to say that they believe in God, as all those who are on His way are on the right way. This is my sixth visit here and the fifth time to come for the Youth Festival. I visited many destinations for pilgrims, perhaps the Holy Land was the most special for me and Medjugorje is right next to it. One feels here the presence of our Heavenly Mother and peace. So many young people gather here from all over the world. They speak different languages and yet we all understand each other. Love that is here cannot be described”, said Bernarda.    http://www.medjugorje.hr/en/


The Medjugorje Message: In light and shade, Mirjana remains transfixed

The Medjugorje Message: In light and shade, Mirjana remains transfixed: This morning’s apparition of Our Lady to Mirjana at the Blue Cross produced evidence for the claim that the visionary is unaware and not aff...


Medjugorje: Our Ladys message to Mirjana of September 2, 2015

"My dear apostles of love, my carriers of truth, again I am calling you and gathering you around me to help me, to help all of my children who thirst for love and truth—who thirst for my Son. I am a grace from the Heavenly Father, sent to help you to live the word of my Son. Love one another. I lived your earthly life. I know that it is not always easy, but if you will love each other, you will pray with the heart, you will reach spiritual heights and the way to heaven will be opened for you. I, your mother, am waiting for you there because I am there. Be faithful to my Son and teach others faithfulness. I am with you. I will help you. I will teach you faith that you may know how to transmit it to others in the right way. I will teach you truth that you may know how to discern. I will teach you love that you may come to know what real love is. My children, my Son will make it so as to speak through your words and your actions. Thank you."



"The Spirit of the Lord is upon me." -Luke 4:18
Father Al Lauer, founder of One Bread, One Body, considered Luke 4:18 to be his personal mission statement. As he prepared for his ordination to the priesthood, he chose this Scripture verse as his theme. The passage was quoted on his funeral Mass card. Fr. Al was on fire with the Holy Spirit and operated in the gifts of the Holy Spirit throughout his priesthood.
Jesus said: "I have come to light a fire on the earth. How I wish the blaze were ignited!" (Lk 12:49) Jesus came to baptize you with the Holy Spirit (Mk 1:8). On Easter, He told His disciples, "Receive the Holy Spirit" (Jn 20:22). After Jesus ascended, the gifts of the Spirit were poured out on us all (Eph 4:11; Acts 2:17) and the Church was born.

At Baptism, you received "the power to live and act under the prompting of the Holy Spirit through the gifts of the Holy Spirit" (Catechism, 1266; see also Mk 1:8). Yet the world, the devil, and our flesh constantly fight against the Holy Spirit for control of our lives (Gal 5:17). Therefore, "I remind you to stir into flame" the Holy Spirit in your lives (2 Tm 1:6-7).
Fr. Al once told me: "The more I say 'No' to myself, the more I say 'Yes' to the Holy Spirit." In that spirit, repent immediately of all sin. Deny yourself and take up your daily cross (Lk 9:23). Be on fire with the Holy Spirit, living so as to never stifle or sadden the Spirit (1 Thes 5:19; Eph 4:30). "Since we live by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit's lead" (Gal 5:25).


Archbishop George Pearce, friend of Medjugorje Dies

The Most Reverend George H. Pearce, S.M., D.D., Retired Bishop in Residence, Diocese of Providence, RI, Archbishop Emeritus of Suva, died on Sunday, August 30, 2015. May he rest in God's peace. 

Msgr. George Hamilton Pearce, retired archbishop of the Fiji Islands, came with a group of American pilgrims on a private visit to Medjugorje at the end of September / beginning of October 2002. He has already been in Medjugorje in the eighties and in the nineties: he believes in the apparitions and in the authenticity of Our Lady’s messages. Msgr. Pearce is a religious, member of the Congregation of Marist Fathers. Since retiring from active Episcopal service, he lives and serves in the Archdiocese of Providence, Rhode Island, USA, where - in the cathedral - he leads a Marian prayer group. Fr. Mario Knezovic spoke with him.

Father Archbishop, when someone mentions the word “Medjugorje”, what do you think about and what do you say about this place?

I have no doubt about its authenticity. I have been here three times already and I say to any priest who asks about it: just go and sit in the confessional, and you will see miracle after miracle after miracle… through Mary’s intercession and the power of God. We were told: “By their fruits you will know them”. Certainly, the heart and soul of the Medjugorje message is the Eucharist and the sacrament of the reconciliation.

Father Archbishop, the Church still examines the events of Medjugorje. What is your personal position? Do you believe in the apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary in this place and in the apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary generally?

I have no doubts whatsoever. This is the work of God. As I said: you cannot but believe when you spend a little time in the confessional. Signs and wonders are merciful gifts of God too, but this is the greatest of all miracles for a priest to see the people around the altar of the Lord. I have been in several shrines, I have spent quite a bit of time in Guadalupe, I have been about eight times at Fatima, and also in Lourdes, it’s the same Mary, the same message, but here at Medjugorje this is the “now” word of Our Lady for the world. There is so much anguish and suffering. Our Lady has been with us all the way through, and in a special way in Medjugorje.

Do you know that, in the world, there are several thousands of prayer groups inspired by Our Lady’s messages from Medjugorje? There are more than a thousand groups in your country, the USA… How much is this a sign that the Church recognises God’s words in the words of Our Lady?

We had many humorous remarks from the Pope John Paul II. Somebody asked him why he had not been to Medjugorje yet, and he answered: “It has not been approved yet!” Mirjana told us this morning that he told her that, if he were not Pope, he would have been to Medjugorje long ago!

 We have a little group in the Cathedral in Providence, where I am. They call it “Little St. James”. They meet every evening; they have exposition and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, benediction and Holy Mass.

We see that there is much tension in the world. America has felt the violence of the terrorism. How much America today can listen to the message of Peace and work on a just peace in the whole world?

I think that we have not got the message yet. There was a great turn to the Lord right after September 11th, but we need more then that, I think, before that country really turns to the Lord. So we just pray for that day, we hope we will turn to the Lord before we have to learn too many lessons, but this is also an act of the mercy of God. Everything is an act of the mercy of God. We know very well that God in his merciful love, in his permissive Providence, will take all the means possible that none of the least of his children will be totally lost. That’s all that really matters.

Father Archbishop, what would you say to those who want to come to Medjugorje? What would you say to those who doubt?

I would say: come in the spirit of an open mind, in prayer, entrust your journey to Our Lady. Just come and the Lord will do the rest.