Sr. Isabel Reflection on Our Lady's message of September 25, 2009

September 25, 2009 -- Our Lady's Message

*Dear children, with joy, persistently work on your conversion. Offer all your joys and sorrows to my Immaculate Heart that I may lead you all to my most beloved Son, so that you may find joy in His Heart. I am with you to instruct you and to lead you towards eternity. Thank you for having responded to my call.

*A Reflection (by Sr. Isabel)
Conversion is a moment by moment task that we all have in our pilgrimage to eternity. Everything that happens in our life contributes toward our conversion, towards our drawing closer to Jesus, and to growing in the perfection He has for each of us. Our Lady says in this message, when we offer all our joys and sorrows to her Immaculate Heart, she will lead us to her most beloved Son. Sometimes, we focus on the joy or the sorrow or the experience of the moment, and we forget to offer it all to Our Lady. But, once we do, she takes over, and leads us closer and closer to Jesus. There is nothing new in the message, just a motherly reminder that her purpose in coming to earth is to lead us to Jesus, where we will find true and lasting joy. She desires to be our teacher and to show us the way to eternity.
Ten days ago, I was privileged to be in the chapel which Ivan, the visionary, has on his property in Medjugorje. The occasion was his daily visit from Our Lady. At the end of the apparition, Ivan said that Our Lady came joyful and happy. She called us to pray for holiness in our families as Satan is trying to destroy families. She said, "Let each family be church... a living church." That’s what happens when families strive to be the witnesses of God’s love for one another, growing in the conversion Our Lady calls for. She said, “I am with you and I thank you for accepting and living my messages.”
I prayed for each of you during the apparition. Our Lady knows your needs and desires, and I asked her to intercede for you with her Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ.

Some of you may know that Sr. Janja Boras had open heart surgery last week. She is recuperating at the convent in Zagreb. Please continue to pray for her speedy and complete recovery. Sister has served the English speaking pilgrims in Medjugorje since the apparitions began.
Peace & prayers,


All is possible with God

THE GOD OF THE IMPOSSIBLE"Even if this should seem impossible in the eyes of the remnant of this people, shall it in those days be impossible in My eyes also, says the Lord of hosts?" —Zechariah 8:6It seemed impossible that the Israelite nation would ever be restored, but "nothing is impossible with God" (Lk 1:37). Think of the most impossible situation in your life — a marriage that seems irreconcilable, a terminal illness, long-term compulsive behavior, a dead parish, mental illness, family breakdown, etc. What man considers impossible, the Lord sees as opportunities to manifest His almighty power.To strengthen your faith in the God of the impossible: * Read and pray God's word. "Faith comes through hearing, and hearing by God's word" (Rm 10:17, our transl.). * Ask others, including Saint Jude, to pray for you to see the most impossible situations in your life the way God sees them. * Go to Confession and repent of giving in to doubt. * Praise and thank the Lord for doing the impossible, even before He does it. * Share your faith in the God of the impossible by telling others about Him.God will do more than we can ever ask for or imagine (Eph 3:20). He will do the impossible.Prayer: Father, thank You for the hope that "will not leave us disappointed" (Rm 5:5)."Whoever welcomes this little child on My account welcomes Me, and whoever welcomes Me welcomes Him Who sent Me; for the least one among you is the greatest." —Lk 9:48


Our Lady's Medjugorje message.

Monthly Message - September 25, 2009

"Dear children, with joy, persistently work on your conversion. Offer all your joys and sorrows to my Immaculate Heart that I may lead you all to my most beloved Son, so that you may find joy in His Heart. I am with you to instruct you and to lead you towards eternity. Thank you for having responded to my call."


Cardinal Schonborn of Vienna welcomes Medjugorje seer

On September 15th, St Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna, Austria, welcomed the visionary, Marija Pavlovic-Lunetti. The Cathedral, packed with people, hosted a beautiful evening which included Holy Mass and Eucharistic Adoration. It lasted from 4pm to 9:30pm! At the end of the evening a very powerful and happy surprise came when Cardinal Schönborn gave the final benediction to the whole assembly.

Afterward, he highlighted the importance of Medjugorje for our times. He told of the graces of liberation obtained in Medjugorje. In particular he featured stories about addictions (drug, alcohol, etc) and the graces that come to those who participate in the life of the Church.
Here are a few words from the Cardinal: “We can give thanks to Our Lord because through His mother, so many people are lead to the Love of God, so many conversions happen, people go back to Confession and they develop a love for the Eucharist. Reconciliations happen in families, and some people are cured from drug and other types of addictions. The fact that the mother of God wishes to be so close to all her children is an immense gift. She has already showed this proximity in many places and for many years in a special way in Medjugorje.”


Capturing a Village of Faith: You don't choose to go to Medjugorje, Medjugorje chooses you.

Timaru Herald photographer Natasha Martin travelled to Medjugorje as a professional, but found the pilgrimage became part of her personal experience, writes Claire Allison.
Natasha Martin went to the Bosnian village of Medjugorje as a photojournalist.
She came away with more than she expected.

Medjugorje is considered a modern-day Lourdes. Each year, 40 million people make a spiritual pilgrimage to the tiny village, hoping to experience some of the miracles that are said to occur there.
Martin's original destination was Ireland. But when that fell through, she was left with a ticket to Europe to use, and decided to catch up with her mother and two aunts who were travelling to the village.
The chance involved supports a theory Martin heard often while she was there; that you don't choose to go to Medjugorje Medjugorje chooses you.
"In many ways, I didn't really know what I was letting myself in for.
"For me, my purpose for going was purely to look at it as an editorial photographer and the opportunity that would present. But on leaving, I left with the feeling there was certainly something ... You certainly do react even when you see things through a lens, you can't not react it does affect you in a way.
"I went in as a professional, but I came out with something extra."
Professionally, Martin was following in the footsteps of a young Life magazine photographer who was sent out many years ago with a basic Box Brownie camera to shoot a photo essay of New York, and in more recent times, a fellow Fairfax photographer had used a small "point and shoot" camera for a trip to South America. The challenge of using the compact equipment and the invisibility that offered, in contrast to the traditional bulky SLR equipment, appealed to Martin.
While her knowledge of Medjugorje was limited, what she knew piqued her interest.
The Virgin Mary is said to have appeared to six children in Medjugorje in June 1981, and has been appearing every day since then. From her, they receive messages for their parish and the world, and have each been given 10 secrets to eventually be made public.
"It's not something I would normally set out to do. I'm not as devout as my mother, but given the option of having a ticket, it was something that intrigued me.
"I'd read that it's one of the most amazing and important supernatural events of our time. There are supernatural things that happen, there have been miraculous healings there and also spiritual healings.
"Our Lady has been appearing every day since 1981, and this will be the last time that she appears in the world. There will not be another Lourdes or Fatima. So it has been the centre of world attention and studies."

Martin saw for the first time how important religion could be in people's lives.
"What stuck in my mind was how important religion is, and realising how devout people were. It was overwhelming at first, but towards the end of it, I realised how little I had in my own life. I felt like I could be a better person over there.
"You come back home and realise it's not as important over here. To them, religion comes first. The basic values over there are something that's lacking here."
But with the spiritual comes the commercial.
"Driving into Medjugorje at night time, and the first thing we noticed coming into the township was what seemed like store upon store upon store of religious artefacts; they were open until about midnight. There were hardly any normal shops. And most of the people who run those stores aren't even locals they're people that come in.
"So there's that tourist side of it too ... while it has created jobs, in some ways it does lose a little bit of the essence of the place."
The sheer number of people became evident at the outdoor masses.
"That's when you see how overwhelming it was every inch of ground was covered."
Huge crowds would gather to hear the visionaries speak.
"Sometimes the visionaries would appear in public as they were visited by Our Lady, but you never know when it's going to happen. It's just word of mouth. We heard one day that she was appearing on a place called Apparition Hill so we thought we'd go over. All the way up the hill, it looked like maggots. All you saw was all these people swarming up the hill ... I don't know how many people would have been there."
Professional and personal lines became intertwined, with many of Martin's images focusing on individuals' reactions, experiences and struggles.
"Maybe because it was something I felt in myself, my own personal struggles of coming to terms with faith in my life through the camera seeing people having quiet moments aside.
"I don't know whether I purposely focused on that, or whether it subconsciously reflected what I was thinking."
"I hope in some ways that's translated through the images the effect of faith on people's lives."
Martin was able to capture on camera the phenomenon of a bronze statue weeping tears, and she watched as people lined up to wipe the tears, and attempt to heal others with them.
"There are some things that go beyond your understanding of faith."
Settling back in to life in Timaru, Martin would not pass up the chance to return to Medjugorje.
"As a photographer, pilgrimages themselves are very interesting, especially to see such a vast number of people in one place you can't ignore that and have to ask yourself why 40 million people are visiting this place.
"As a photographer and as a person because I can't separate the two I would go there again without a doubt."


Let the Word of Christ dwell in You.

A LIFESTYLE IN GOD'S WORD"Let the word of Christ, rich as it is, dwell in you." —Colossians 3:16 To let the word of Christ dwell in you, do the following:
* Devour God's word; let it become your happiness and joy (Jer 15:16). * Study it daily (Acts 17:11) and allow it to burn in your heart (Lk 24:32). * Savor God's word. Let it become to you more precious than riches and sweeter than honey (Ps 119:72, 103). * Allow God's word to judge (Jn 12:48), pierce (Heb 4:12), and change you. * Abide in God's word (Jn 8:31) and let it abide in you (Col 3:16). Spend your best time and your spare time in the word. * "Humbly welcome the word that has taken root in you, with its power to save you. Act on this word" (Jas 1:21-22).
* Let God's word fill your heart, mind, and soul to the point that your native language is "Scripture" (Ps 119:13; Lk 6:45). * Teach the word of God to others (2 Tm 4:2). Let the word of Christ dwell in you so "the word of God [will continue] to spread and increase" (Acts 12:24). Jesus, open my mind to the understanding of Your word (Lk 24:45). "In Your word I hope" (Ps 119:114). Be filled with the Spirit of the Lord and his Word.


Father Stefan Starzynski, the Healing Priest.

Fr Stefan Starzynski: the healing priest
September 7, 9:18 PM Roman Catholic Examiner Pamela Luther

When we think of healing, we often think of physical and emotional healing sometimes through the hands of medical care and sometimes through prayer to Our Lord.
Fr. Stefan Starzynski of Fairfax, VA is a priest at St. Mary of Sorrows Parish. He uses his time to conduct the normal business and demands of most priests.
But Fr. Stefan does even more. He has been an instrument that God has used to heal people, both physically and emotionally. God has also used Fr. Stefan to minister to the needs of expectant mothers by providing housing and hope for them.
Every Wednesday evening, Fr. Stefan leads a charismatic prayer group every Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. On the second Saturday of each month, he also has a healing mass at 7 p.m. Both the mass and the prayer group are held at St. Mary of Sorrows Parish, 5222 Sideburn Road, Fairfax, VA, 22032.
Many people have been blessed by Our Lord’s touch at both the prayer group and at the healing mass.Having been a priest for 13 years, he has youth, energy and joy. Compound that with being filled with the Holy Spirit, you find quite a vibrant force of Our Lord moving at these prayer groups and meetings.Fr. Stefan writes that when he was ordained, lying prostrate before the Lord, he asked that he not only be ordained as a priest in the sacramental sense but also baptized by the Holy Spirit in the Pentecostal sense. A few short days later, his prayer was answered and God started to use him to perform miracles.
Because of the Catholic Church’s pro-life stance and his own personal convictions, Fr. Stefan later heard the call to build a home for expectant mothers who need shelter during their pregnancies and afterwards. It is his belief that Roe v. Wade will be overturned, and there will be more of a need to help pregnant women who must have shelter. The Paul Stefan Home for Expectant Mothers has proved to be a blessing to many women who would have had no place to go had this home not been there to welcome them.
In communicating with Fr. Stefan, he told me that his first book Miracles and Margaritas will be released Spring 2010. This book will detail Fr. Stefan’s true stories of divine healings and other miracles.
In the year of the priest, let us pray that all our priests listen to the call of the Lord to minister in any way He calls them to do. We are called to pray for our priests ; pray for Fr. Stefan. Amen.
For more information:Va. family grateful for ‘miracle’ child, now 3; preemie confounded doctors’ dire predictions
Priest starts homes for unwed mothers as the pro-life ‘next step
Virginia home helps expectant mothers face unintended pregnancies
Fr. Stefan Starzynski: “Come Holy Spirit:
Paul Stefan Home for Expectant Mothers


New Video from Medjugorje

Chrissie, Posted: Mon Sep 07, 2009 - I think this video about Medjugorje needs some attention. Medjugorje Forum.



What Choice would you make ?


What would you do?....you make the choice. Don't look for a punch line, there isn't one. Read it anyway. My question is: Would you have made the same choice?
At a fundraising dinner for a school that serves children with learning disabilities, the father of one of the students delivered a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended. After extolling the school and its
dedicated staff, he offered a question:
'When not interfered with by outside influences, everything nature does, is done with perfection.
Yet my son, Shay, cannot learn things as other children do. He cannot understand things as other children do.
Where is the natural order of things in my son?'
The audience was stilled by the query.
The father continued. 'I believe that when a child like Shay, who was mentally and physically disabled comes into the world, an opportunity to realize true human nature presents itself, and it comes in the way other people treat that child.'
Then he told the following story:
Shay and I had walked past a park where some boys Shay knew were playing baseball. Shay asked, 'Do you think they'll let me play?' I knew that most of the boys would not want someone like Shay on their team, but as a father I also understood that if my son were allowed to play, it would give him a much-needed sense of belonging and some confidence to be accepted by others in spite of his handicaps.
I approached one of the boys on the field and asked (not expecting much) if Shay could play. The boy looked around for guidance and said, 'We're losing by six runs and the game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we'll try to put him in to bat in the ninth inning.'
Shay struggled over to the team's bench and, with a broad smile, put on a team shirt. I watched with a small tear in my eye and warmth in my heart.. The boys saw my joy at my son being accepted.
In the bottom of the eighth inning, Shay's team scored a few runs but was still behind by three.
In the top of the ninth inning, Shay put on a glove and played in the right field. Even though no hits came his way, he was obviously ecstatic just to be in the game and on the field, grinning from ear to ear as I waved to him from the stands.
In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shay's team scored again.
Now, with two outs and the bases loaded, the potential winning run was on base and Shay was scheduled to be next at bat.
At this juncture, do they let Shay bat and give away their chance to win the game?
Surprisingly, Shay was given the bat. Everyone knew that a hit was all but impossible because Shay didn't even know how to hold the bat properly, much less connect with the ball.
However, as Shay stepped up to the
plate, the pitcher, recognizing that the other team was putting winning aside for this moment in Shay's life, moved in a few steps to lob the ball in softly so Shay could at least make contact.
The first pitch came and Shay swung clumsily and missed.
The pitcher again took a few steps forward to toss the ball softly towards Shay.
As the pitch came in, Shay swung at the ball and hit a slow ground ball right back to the pitcher.
The game would now be over.
The pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could have easily thrown the ball to the first baseman.
Shay would have been out and that would have been the end of the game.
Instead, the pitcher threw the ball right over the first baseman's head, out of reach of all team mates.
Everyone from the stands and both teams started yelling, 'Shay, run to first!
Run to first!'
Never in his life had Shay ever run that far, but he made it to first base.
He scampered down the baseline, wide-eyed and startled.
Everyone yelled, 'Run to second, run to second!'
Catching his breath, Shay awkwardly ran towards second, gleaming and struggling to make it to the base.
By the time Shay rounded towards second base, the right fielder had the ball . the smallest guy on their team who now had his first chance to be the hero for his team.
He could have thrown the ball to the second-baseman for the tag, but he understood the pitcher's intentions so he, too, intentionally threw the ball high and far over the third-baseman's head.
Shay ran toward third base deliriously as the runners ahead of him circled the bases toward home.
All were screaming, 'Shay, Shay, Shay, all the Way Shay'
Shay reached third base because the opposing shortstop ran to help him by turning him in the direction of third base, and shouted, 'Run to third!
Shay, run to third!'
As Shay rounded third, the boys from both teams, and the spectators, were on their feet screaming, 'Shay, run home! Run home!'
Shay ran to home, stepped on the plate, and was cheered as the hero who hit the grand slam and won the game for his team
'That day', said the father softly with tears now rolling down his face, 'the boys from both teams helped bring a piece of true love and humanity into this world'.
Shay didn't make it to another summer. He died that winter, having never forgotten being the hero and making me so happy, and coming home and seeing his Mother tearfully embrace her little hero of the day!
A wise man once said every society is judged by how it treats it's least fortunate amongst them.
You now have two choices:
1. Delete
2. Forward
May your day, be a Shay Day.


Our Lady's message to Mirjana

Message to Mirjana - September 2, 2009

Our Lady appeared to the visionary Mirjana this morning in Medjugorje and gave the following message:"Dear children; Today, with a motherly heart, I call you to learn to forgive, completely and unconditionally. You suffer injustice, betrayals and prosecutions, but by that you are closer to and dearer to God. My children, pray for the gift of love. Only love forgives all, as my Son forgives – follow Him. I am among you and am praying that when you come before your Father you can say: 'Here I am Father, I followed your Son, I had love and forgave with the heart, because I believed in your judgment and trusted in you.' Thank you."


Capturing the Moment-Photo by Greg Sousa

Copyright 2009, The Associated Press

In this photo taken on Aug. 30, 2009, Senior Airman Shaun Thomas, of the 335th Fighter Squadron at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro, N.C., spends a few moments alone shortly before deploying to Afghanistan. (AP Photo/News-Argus, Greg Sousa) Chief Photographer Goldsboro News-Argus 310 North Berkeley Blvd.Goldsboro, N.C. 27534(919) 778-2211 ext. 865
Out Of The Ordinary

Usually I would blog about the newest sports stories in the U.S.A. But not this blog. This blog is going to be about the United States Military who are working everyday of their lives to keep us safe in our homes. There are thousands of men and women who are out in the world everyday fighting for us. Some don't come home at all and leave entire families behind. I can't imagine the feeling of losing my father, mother, sister, brother, cousin, aunt, uncle, or any one of my friends. I don't know if I could move on from that thought. So I ask that everybody try to understand what these families must be going through even now with family overseas. This past Sunday in Goldsboro, North Carolina, the U.S. Air Force sent out the 335th Fighter Squadron to Afghanistan for 4 to 6 months. That's going to be some of the hardest months of their families' lives. So please keep them in your prayers as they go into the heart of the flames. (AP Photo/News-Argus, Greg Sousa)
Posted by Nick Sousa at http://www.nickpicking.blogspot.com/

Who is your Hero ?


Everyone needs heroes--to look up to, to model their lives after, even from whom to request intercession. You can tell a lot about a person by the heroes they have. Young people many times choose animated superheroes, sports stars, rock stars, and/or Hollywood celebrities. As they grow older, those heroes may change to successful business leaders, politicians, and or military leaders. As they mature still further, clarifying just what it is that's really important in their lives (love, faith, courage, self-sacrifice, humility, and commitment over, say, fame and riches), then their heroes change yet again.
Certainly Jesus is the Ultimate Hero. As God-Made-Man, He is not only our Savior and the Savior of the Universe, but THE One we Christians through grace most seek to imitate. Apart from Jesus, who do you look up to? In my life, I'm listing ten heroes who inspire me by their lives to live a better life. 1. Mother Mary. Can our Spiritual Mother also be a model and a hero? I say, most definitely. Our Lady, throughout the ages, has shown a great desire to work through the power of her intercessions for the salvation of all her children. She is like "the Hound of Heaven" (Chesterton?) who never gives up on her children. Her perseverance inspires me greatly. As Our Lady of Medjugorje, she has shown patience, commitment, humility, and forebearance in her determination through her messages to the visionaries and to us to encourage people to turn back to God in prayer, repentance, fasting, and reconciliation. 2. Mother Teresa of Calcutta--she loved the poorest of the poor as Christ did and does. 3. Pope John Paul II--great love, great strength, great leadership, great energy--in travelling the world in an unprecedented way to spread the mesage of Christ to all peoples. 4. St Maximillian Kolbe--at Auschwitz, he gave his life so that a father of a large family could live (and eventually go back to that family after the war). 5. Anwar Sadat--he demonstrated incredible courage in hopes of peace between warring peoples. 6. St Peter Clavier--"The slave of the slaves" who for over three decades treated the wounds of those disembarking from the slaveships at Cartegena. 7. Harriet Tubman--At great risk to her life, she journeyed down to Virginia through the Maryland Eastern Shore to rescue untold numbers of slaves. 8. Simon Weisenthal--he never forgot. But he did so not out of vengenance, but out of love. He lived simply (had the same car for fifteen years and the same modest home for longer). 9. Abraham Lincoln--he worked wisely and patiently--among a number of people representing opposing interests--for the freedom of the most marginalized and oppressed. 10. George Washington--at the height of his power, he willingly gave up that power. On his deathbed, he freed his slaves. Who are your heroes? -- Author Vrichc