The Assumption: Celebrating the Blessed Mother’s ultimate journey

The woman who spent so much of her life in motion — setting out, traveling, searching and fleeing –- finally is given a place of rest, a place “prepared by God,” as Revelation puts it

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The gospel today begins with a journey.

“Mary set out and traveled to the hill country in haste…”

This time of year, I think, a lot of us can appreciate the idea of taking a trip. Millions of us are headed to the beach or the mountains, National Parks or Disney World. But what Mary does here is hardly a vacation. She has just been told that she is to be the Mother of God. And rather than keeping this news to herself, or wondering how she will cope, she sets out on a journey, to visit her cousin, Elizabeth — and we have this momentous scene that follows, The Visitation.

Not only does Mary take this journey to a town of Judah but, with this event, the great journey of her LIFE begins – an adventure that will not end until her final journey, to heaven, on the feast we celebrate today, the Assumption.

We tend to think of the Blessed Mother as a quiet, serene figure – a woman of few words, but blessed with tremendous faith, and boundless trust. This is true.

But this morning, I’d like to ask you to think of her a little differently.

Think of her also as a woman of action.

She is a woman on a continual journey — constantly, by necessity, on the move. She is restless, rarely sitting still or staying in one place.

After this journey to see Elizabeth, we next find Mary embarking on an arduous trip, while pregnant, to Bethlehem.

After giving birth, she and her small family are on the move again, fleeing to Egypt, to escape death.

We meet her again, traveling to Jerusalem, where her son goes missing – and we follow her as she goes in search of him. Finding him, she continues her travels, bringing him home to Nazareth.

Mary, as the first disciple, in many ways prefigures all the disciples who will follow – those who traveled, mostly on foot, throughout the world to spread the gospel and proclaim the good news. Like those apostles, Mary was a missionary – the first missionary, a woman who traveled and carried Christ to the world.

In today’s gospel, we see her, literally, bringing Jesus to another, as she carries him in her womb and goes to her cousin and speaks the words any missionary might pronounce – words which are the very essence of The Good News, and the beginning of all belief:

“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord.”

What follows, the Magnificat, is Mary’s great gift to scripture, one of its most beautiful prayers. It is prayed every evening in the Liturgy of the Hours by millions around the world. With that, Mary’s great acclamation becomes the Church’s.

We can only imagine what other travels she took in the course of her life … but we can’t forget one in particular, the most difficult of all, as she followed her son on HIS journey to Calvary.

But today, on this feast, we celebrate her ultimate journey – her assumption into heaven, body and soul. The woman who spent so much of her life in motion — setting out, traveling, searching and fleeing – finally is given a place of rest, a place “prepared by God,” as Revelation puts it. This day, we honor that, and honor how God has “looked with favor on his lowly servant.”

This feast marks the end of Mary’s earthly story – and the beginning of one that continues, to this day, in heaven. She becomes, for all time, what Elizabeth says in her first word of greeting: “Blessed.”

But though she left this world, Mary is not removed from us. Her life is closely entwined with ours. All of us, like Mary, are on a journey. All of us are traveling to places we may not understand, to destinations we cannot see. This is life. But we ask Mary to help guide us on our way.

The road is long. The journey isn’t easy. We pray to have the trust in God that we need to travel whatever road we must take – just as Mary did.

And we pray, too, that one day our journeying will lead us to meet her face to face – in that place prepared for her, that destination that became her home, and where she waits for us, with a mother’s love and a mother’s hope.

 

 kandra3 Deacon Greg Kandra

Deacon Greg Kandra is a Roman Catholic deacon in the Diocese of Brooklyn, New York. For nearly three decades, he was a writer and producer for CBS News, where he contributed to a variety of programs and was honored with every major award in broadcasting. Deacon Greg now serves as Multimedia Editor for Catholic Near East Welfare Association (CNEWA.) He and his wife live in Forest Hills, New York.

 

Allow the Holy Spirit to Lead you!

Our Lady of Medjugorje Message of May 25, 1993 “Dear children! Today I invite you to open yourselves to God by means of prayer so the Holy Spirit may begin to work miracles in you and through you. I am with you and I intercede before God for each one of you because, dear children, each one of you is important in my plan of salvation. I invite you to be carriers of good and peace. God can give you peace only if you convert and pray. Therefore, my dear little children, pray, pray, pray and do that which the Holy Spirit inspires you. Thank you for having responded to my call.”

ALLOW THE HOLY SPIRIT TO LEAD YOU

The most important meaning for faith is really allowing God that He may lead us. He does this by way of the Holy Spirit. To let oneself be led, to listen for God, and to do what He has planned for us is what many people — people who say that they believe — still do not allow themselves to do. For instance, when we are wounded by someone, if we let ourselves be led by God, then we will forgive, and also not loose our patience, even when he has wounded us 70 x 7 times. Jesus tells us to forgive 70 x 7 times, but when we say only after 2 or 3 times that we no longer wish to forgive, then it means that we do not allow God to lead us. And every time, in every sin, the same thing is repeated, because we are failing to allow God to lead us. For instance, someone who does not pray and does not go to Mass, and who does not honor his parents, and who rejects, in one way or another, God’s Commandments, he then fails to allow God to lead him. Why does this happen? Once because we are proud, another time because we are selfish. Pride means in itself the questioning of God: “Who are you to tell me this?” Then it also adds the statement: “I will do this alone, I will do this the way I want to do it.” This pride is the cause of the first sin, and of every sin that anyone has ever committed. Why should man not know what is best for him? …this is what God asked. But pride always says in every situation: “Who are you God? I decide the way I want to decide.” This pride in us is what we must fight with all the means that are available to us by way of the graces that are given us by the Holy Spirit — the Holy Spirit who wishes us to lead us..

Fra Slavko of Medjugorje
Medjugorje; May 28, 1998.

 

33 phenomenal years of grace

TimeOfGrace_72_3988TUESDAY, JUNE 24, 2014

 

By: Crown of Stars Blog

Ivanka Ivankovic was the first of the six visionaries to see Our Lady at when the Medjugorje phenomenon began 33 years ago on June 24, 1981.

Ivanka lives a discreet, almost private life, close to the village of Medjugorje.

This is a transcript of a talk she gave to young pilgrims visiting Medjugorje for a recent Youth Festival.

• I would like to greet you all with the most beautiful of greetings: Praised be Jesus and Mary. I am so pleased to be here with you today and even more pleased that you are ready to hear the message of Our Lady.

For all these years I have been asking God the very same question: Why did you choose me? I know that I was given a great grace and also I know that at the same time I was given a great responsibility.

I have accepted this as a gift but at the same time I have been praying all the time that God gives me strength to fulfil all the assignments he has for me.

I lived with my family at Mostar at that time and as always, after school, I used to come to Medjugorje. This is what happened that day on June 24, 1981 when I saw Our Lady for the first time.

On that day, like every day, I was outside the village with Mirjana and we were waiting for other friends to come. I do not how long we were waiting but we got tired of that and then we started walking towards the houses.

While we were walking towards the village I was really forced by something to look towards the hill and then I saw Our Lady. I said to Mirjana, “Mirjana, I see Our Lady on the hill” but Mirjana said, “Don’t tell me these foolish things.”

I followed Mirjana who was walking back to the village and then we met Milka, the sister of the visionary Marija. Milka saw that something was wrong with me and she asked me what happened, and I told the girls to come back with me, that I had seen Our Lady. We went back and then all three of us saw Our Lady. Vicka also came to us and then two boys, the two Ivans. The apparition kept calling us but none of us dared to climb the hill.

Our Lady was four or five hundred metres away from us. She kept calling us and emotions we felt in our heart were huge. We felt all kinds of emotions in our heart and none of us dared to get closer to her.

Whoever we told that we saw Our Lady that evening, they did not believe us. They told us not to tell such things. That night was the longest night in my life. I was only 15 and I questioned myself the entire night whether what I saw was true or not.

So the next day at the same hour we went back together to the apparition hill. Before we saw Our Lady we saw the light, three times, and when we finally got to her, I cannot describe that moment of meeting with Our Lady because we felt so much love, felt so secure, so much happiness in our hearts.

When we came to her we saw this most beautiful person, maybe 19 or 20 years of age. She had a crown of stars, white veil, greyish dress, and she was standing on a cloud She had the most beautiful blue eyes and long black hair.

I knew that it was the Blessed Mother You see, two months before that day my mother had passed away. Because I knew in my heart that this was the Blessed Virgin Mary I asked her, “Mother, where is my mother?” And she said, “Do not worry, my child, your mother is with me.”

Our Lady told us, “Do not worry. I’ll pray with you always. I’ll come again tomorrow.”

The word spread very quickly so that on the third day people started following us because they saw something was happening with us, so they gave us holy water to bless the apparition. On that third day when Our Lady came, Vicka blessed her and she said, “If you come from God, stay. But if you do not come from God, please leave us.” And then Our Lady smiled back at us and said, “I am the Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of Peace.”

On that day Our Lady gave the first public message, which was the message of peace. As the days passed by Our Lady asked us to convert, to fast, to do some penance, to pray and go to confession and attend Holy Mass. These are the main messages of Our Lady of Medjugorje.

From 1981 until 1985 I received the apparitions on a daily basis. During that period Our Lady dictated to me her biography. I wrote everything down. She also told me the future of the world and the future of our Church. When I have permission from Our Lady, this will be published.
On the 7th May, 1985, I had the last daily apparition and that was the longest apparition that I have ever had because Our Lady stayed with me one hour.

On that day Our Lady gave me the final and tenth secret and I was told that I would not have the apparitions on a daily basis anymore, but Our Lady promised me that she was going to appear to me once a year on June 25.

From 1985 to today I received the apparition once every year on June 25. But at that last daily apparition I was given the greatest gift, not just for myself but for the entire world. And because every single human being is asking is there a life after this life on earth, I am standing before you here today, I am standing before the entire world and I can easily answer that question. Yes, there is a life after this life, because by God and Our Lady I was given this great grace, that I was able to see my late mother during that apparition time and my mom told me: “My dear child, I’m proud of you.”

For 28 years Our Lady has been telling us which road we need to take in our life. She is showing us the way and we have to decide which road we are going to take in our life.

Our Lady has given a different mission to each one of us visionaries. My mission is to pray for families. So every day I pray for families.

The last apparition I had was this year on June 25 and that apparition lasted ten minutes and Our Lady spoke to me about the tenth secret and she advised for all of us to become apostles of peace and to pray for peace. Our Lady ended her message with “Peace, peace, peace.”

Let us be reminded in prayer. Let us pray for each other. Our Lady wants us to be be in peace, not to be afraid, to know that she is there for us all of the time.

Finally, when you leave Medjugorje I would like you to take peace and love from Medjugorje back to your home and to your country. Thank you all for everything.

• Ivanka will receive her annual apparition tomorrow, June 25.

source: crownofstars.blogspot.com/2014/06/the-first-of-visionaries-to-see-our-lady.html

Message to Mirjana – June 2, 2014

 

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“Dear children, I call you all and accept you as my children. I am praying that you may accept me and love me as a mother. I have united all of you in my heart, I have descended among you and I bless you. I know that you desire consolation and hope from me because I love you and intercede for you. I ask of you to unite with me in my Son and to be my apostles. For you to be able to do so, I am calling you, anew, to love. There is no love without prayer – there is no prayer without forgiveness because love is prayer – forgiveness is love. My children, God created you to love and you love so as to forgive. Every prayer that comes out of love unites you with my Son and the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit illuminates you and makes you my apostles – apostles who will do everything they do in the name of the Lord. They will pray with their works and not just with words, because they love my Son and comprehend the way of truth which leads to eternal life. Pray for your shepherds that they may always lead you with a pure heart on the way of truth and love – the way of my Son. Thank you.”

Our Lady calls you to Bethlehem

OurLadyCallsUstoBethlehemOur Lady Calls you to Bethlehem

Advent reflections with Our Lady of Medjugorje. This soft cover pamphlet style book, contains Our Lady’s messages for each day with a reflection. What better way to bring Christ into our Christmas then to walk with Our Lady to Bethlehem.

$12.00, includes shipping and handling

Click below to take you to the website to order:

http://www.prayerfulpath.com/books-and-more.html

 

Come to Me

maryMessage from July 25, 1989 to Marija

“Dear children! Today I am calling you to renew your hearts. Open yourselves to God and surrender to him all your difficulties and crosses so, God may turn everything into joy. Little children, you cannot open yourselves to God if you do not pray. Therefore, from today, decide to consecrate a time in the day only for an encounter with God in silence. In that way you will be able, with God, to witness my presence here. Little children, I do not wish to force you. Rather freely give God your time, like children of God. Thank you for having responded to my
call.”

risenchrist2“Come to me, all you that labour, and are burdened,
and I will refresh you. Take up my yoke upon you, and learn
of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart: and you shall
find rest to your souls. For my yoke is sweet and my burden light”.
-Matthew 11:28-30

 Pray your rosary today for all your crosses!

 

 

Never Forget 9-11-2001, Let us Pray!

sept11As the twelfth anniversary of 9/11 approaches us tomorrow, please remember those lives lost on that tragic day and the impact it has had on our nation since. There will be a national moment of silence starting at 0846 (Eastern) and flags are to be flown at half-staff from sunup to sundown. We will never forget.

Let us remember all the families involved in this tragedy. Remember them while we pray our Rosaries, Divine Mercy Chaplets and any other prayers through out the day.