Dec 17

12 /17 – O WISDOM

12/17 – O WISDOM,

who came from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from end to end and ordering all things mightily and sweetly– COME! and teach us the way of prudence.

1/3/32 – Vol. 30

Certainty of the coming of the Kingdom of the Divine Will upon earth. 

My abandonment continues in the Divine Fiat, but I felt worried by the thought: “How will this Kingdom of the Divine Will ever be able to come? Sin abounds, evils get worse, it seems to me that the creatures are not disposed to receive such a great Good; so much so, that there is not a soul, as good as they may be, who truly wants to occupy himself with making known what regards the Divine Will. If God does not operate a prodigy of His Omnipotence, the Kingdom of the Divine Fiat may be in Heaven, but as for the earth, it is useless to think about it.”

But while I was thinking of this and other things, my beloved Jesus, making His usual visit to my soul, told me: “My daughter, everything is possible for Us. The impossibilities, the difficulties, the insurmountable obstacles of creatures melt before Our Supreme Majesty like snow in front of a burning sun. Everything is in whether We want it; all the rest is nothing. Did the same not happen in Redemption? Sin abounded more than ever; only a small group of people was awaiting the Messiah, and in the midst of this group, how many hypocrisies, how many sins of all kinds—they were often idolatrous. But it was decreed that I was to come upon earth. In the face of Our Decrees, all evils cannot prevent what We want to do. We are glorified more by one act alone of Our Will than We are offended by all the evils and sins committed by creatures, because Our Act of the Will is Divine and immense, and in its Immensity it embraces all eternity, all centuries, it extends to all. Therefore, it is not of Our infinite Wisdom not to give Life to even just one act of Our Will because of the evils of creatures. We place Ourselves on Our Divine Side, and We do what We have to do; and the creatures We leave by their human side; and acting as Sovereigns, We lord it over everything and everyone, even over evil, and We put out Our Decrees.

“Now, just as My Coming upon earth was Our Decree, so is Our Decree the Kingdom of Our Will upon earth; even more, it can be said that one and the other are one single Decree, and having carried out the first act of this Decree, We are to carry out the second. …

12/16 THE “O’S” OF ADVENT

R_O antiphon

The last seven days before Christmas contain the seven “O Antiphons.”

The “O’s” of Advent are the great gems of liturgical song which are sung each evening at the “Magnificat” at Vespers, from December 17 to December 23. Addressing Christ with seven magnificent titles, they beg Him to come to save His people.

Each O antiphon addresses Christ using a Messianic title drawn from the prophecies of the Old Testament. Read backwards, the initials of each title in Latin form the words Cras ero or “Tomorrow I shall be (with you)”.

Sapientia (Wisdom)
Adonai (Holy Lord)
Radix Jesse (Root of Jesse)
Clavis David (Key of David)
Oriens (Dayspring or Morning Star)
Rex Gentium (King of the Nations)
Emmanuel (God-with-us)

Dec. 17–O WISDOM, who came from the mouth of the Most High, reaching from end to end and ordering all things mightily and sweetly– COME! and teach us the way of prudence.

Dec. 18–O HOLY LORD of the House of Israel, who appeared to Moses in the flame of the burning bush, and gave him the law on Sinai– COME! and redeem us with outstretched arm.

Dec. 19–O ROOT OF JESSE, who stands for an ensign of the people, before whom kings shall keep silence, and unto whom the Gentiles shall make supplication– COME! to deliver us, and tarry not.

Dec. 20–O KEY OF DAVID, and Sceptre of the House of Israel, who opens and no man shuts, who shuts, and no man opens– COME! and bring forth the captive from his prison, he who sits in darkness and in the shadow of death.

Dec. 21–O DAYSPRING, brightness of the light eternal, and Sun of Justice- COME! and enlighten them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

Dec. 22–O KING OF THE NATIONS and their desired One, the Cornerstone that makes both one– COME! and deliver man, whom You formed out of the dust of the earth.

Dec. 23–O EMMANUEL, our King and Lawgiver, the expected of the nations and their Savior– COME! to save us, O Lord our God.Posted in The Divine Will of God

12/16 From today, the prayers and readings of the Church take on a different nature.

In the first half of Advent we count forwards:  first week, second week, and so on, paying attention to Avent Sunday, the day when Advent started.

Now the second half of Advent has begun, and it is Christmas Day that matters.  Today is the eighth day before Christmas, tomorrow is the seventh day, and so on.  The prayers of the Church follow this countdown, and the final readings from Isaiah build up to their climax.

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Dec 16

12/16 Start of Novena of Holy Christmas – The Nine Excesses of Love

NOVENA OF HOLY CHRISTMAS

THE NINE EXCESSES OF LOVE

 

BVM and Baby Jesus

 

 by

The Servant of God,

Luisa Piccarreta

“Little Daughter of the Divine Will”

 

 Preparation for Holy Christmas during the Season of Advent The Nine Excesses of Love in the Incarnation of the Word Luisa Piccarreta, the Little Daughter of the Divine Will

Let us prepare ourselves for the Great Feast of Holy Christmas by meditating on the Mystery of the Incarnation of the Word, attentively and continuously, during the Season of Advent, with the Christmas Novena (the Nine Excesses of Love) which Luisa did for the first time at the age of seventeen, and which she never abandoned during the course of her life.

Here below is a suggested schedule of meditation.

First, let us focus on each Excess of Love for one week, during nine consecutive weeks, by reading and meditating on them each day, ever more closely and deeply.

This will help us to prepare ourselves for the final nine days before Christmas, in which we will repeat the Novena.

May God grant us abundant graces, light and consuming love, to be reborn with Him in the Life of the Divine Will.  Amen.

 

     Meditation

Theme

             Week
I Excess of Love Trinitarian Love October 14 – 20
II Excess of Love Constrained Love October 21 – 27

III Excess of Love

Devouring Love October 28 – Nov 3
IV Excess of Love Operative Love November 4 – 10
V Excess of Love Lonely Love November 11 – 17

VI Excess of Love

Imprisoned Love November 18 – 24
VII Excess of Love Unrequited Love Nov 25 – Dec 1
VIII Excess of Love Supplicating Love December 2 – 8
IX Excess of Love Agonizing Love December 9 – 15
     Meditation

Theme

             Day
I Excess of Love Trinitarian Love December 16
II Excess of Love Constrained Love December 17
III Excess of Love Devouring Love December 18
IV Excess of Love Operative Love December 19
V Excess of Love Lonely Love December 20
VI Excess of Love Imprisoned Love December 21
VII Excess of Love Unrequited Love December 22
VIII Excess of Love Supplicating Love December 23
IX Excess of Love Agonizing Love December 24

Holy Christmas

The Birth of Jesus

December 25

 

Christmas Novena

From the Writings of Luisa Piccarreta

Volume 1

Luisa:  “With a Novena of Holy Christmas, at the age of about seventeen, I prepared myself for the Feast of Holy Christmas, by practicing various acts of virtue and mortification; and, especially, by honoring the nine months which Jesus spent in the maternal womb with nine hours of meditation each day, always concerning the mystery of the Incarnation.”

 FIRST EXCESS OF LOVE

As for example, for one hour, with my thought, I brought myself to Paradise, and I imagined the Most Holy Trinity:  the Father, sending the Son upon earth; the Son, promptly obeying the Will of the Father; the Holy Spirit, consenting.

My mind was confused in contemplating a mystery so great, a love so reciprocal, so equal, so strong among Themselves and toward men; and then, the ingratitude of men, and especially my own.  I would have remained there, not for one hour, but for the whole day; but an interior voice told me:  “Enough – come and see other greater excesses of my love.”

 

SECOND EXCESS OF LOVE

 Then, my mind brought itself into the maternal womb, and remained stupefied in considering a God so great in Heaven, now so annihilated, restricted, constrained, as to be unable to move, and almost even to breathe.

The interior voice told me:  “Do you see how much I have loved you?  O please, make Me a little space in your heart; remove everything which is not Mine, so you will give Me more freedom to move and to breathe.”

My heart was consumed; I asked for His forgiveness, I promised to be completely His own, I poured myself out in crying; but – I say this to my confusion – I would go back to my usual defects.  Oh Jesus, how good You are with this miserable creature!

THIRD EXCESS OF LOVE

 As I moved on from the second to the third meditation, an interior voice told me:  “My daughter, place your head upon the womb of my Mama, and look deep into it at my little Humanity.  My love devoured Me; the fires, the oceans, the immense seas of love of my Divinity inundated Me, burned Me to ashes, and sent their flames so high as to rise and reach everywhere – all generations, from the first to the last man.  My little Humanity was devoured in the midst of such flames; but do you know what my eternal love wants Me to devour?  Ah!  Souls!  And only then was I content, when I devoured them all, to remain conceived with Me.  I was God, and I was to operate as God – I had to take them all.  My love would have given Me no peace, had I excluded any of them.  Ah!  My daughter, look well into the womb of my Mama; fix well your eyes on my conceived Humanity, and you will find your soul conceived with Me, and the flames of my love that devour you.  Oh!  How much I loved you, and I do love you!”

I felt dissolved in the midst of so much love, nor was I able to go out of it; but a voice called me loudly, saying:  “My daughter, this is nothing yet; cling more tightly to Me, and give your hands to my dear Mama, that She may hold you to her maternal womb.  And you, take another look at my little conceived Humanity, and watch the fourth excess of my love.”

 

FOURTH EXCESS OF LOVE

 “My daughter, from the devouring love, move on to look at my operative love.  Each conceived soul brought Me the burden of her sins, of her weaknesses and passions, and my love commanded Me to take the burden of each one of them.  And it conceived not only the souls, but the pains of each one, as well as the satisfaction which each one of them was to give to my Celestial Father.  So my Passion was conceived together with Me.  Look well at Me in the womb of my Celestial Mama.  Oh!  How tortured was my little Humanity.  Look well at my little head, surrounded by a crown of thorns, which, pressed tightly around my temples, made rivers of tears pour out from my eyes; nor was I able to make a move to dry them.  O Please! Be moved to compassion for Me, dry my eyes from so much crying – you, who have free arms to be able to do it.  These thorns are the crown of the so many evil thoughts which crowd the human minds.  Oh! How they prick Me, more than thorns which sprout from the earth.  But, look again – what a long crucifixion of nine months:  I could not move a finger or a hand or a foot.  I was always immobile; there was no room to be able to move even a tiny bit.  What a long and hard crucifixion, with the addition that all evil works, assuming the form of nails, continuously pierced my hands and feet.”  So He continued to narrate to me pains upon pains – all the martyrdoms of His little Humanity, such that, if I wanted to tell them all, I would be too long.

I abandoned myself to crying, and I heard in my interior:  “My daughter, I would like to hug you, but I am unable to do so – there is no room, I am immobile, I cannot do it.  I would like to come to you, but I am unable to walk.  For now, you hug Me and you come to Me; then, when I come out of the maternal womb, I will come to you.”  But as I hugged Him and squeezed Him tightly to my heart with my imagination, an interior voice told me:  “Enough for now, my daughter; move on to consider the fifth excess of my love.”

 

FIFTH EXCESS OF LOVE

And the interior voice continued:  “My daughter, do not move away from Me, do not leave Me alone; my love wants your company.  This is another excess of my love, which does not want to be alone.  But do you know whose company it wants?  That of the creature.  See, in the womb of my Mama, all of  the creatures are together with Me – conceived together with Me.  I am with them, all love.  I want to tell them how much I love them; I want to speak with them to tell them of my joys and sorrows – that I have come into their midst to make them happy and to console them; that I will remain in their midst as a little brother, giving my goods, my kingdom, to each one of them at the cost of my life.  I want to give them my kisses and my caresses.  I want to amuse myself with them, but – ah, how many sorrows they give Me!  Some run away from Me, some play deaf and force Me into silence; some despise my goods and do not care about my kingdom, returning my kisses and caresses with indifference and obliviousness of Me, so they convert my amusement into bitter crying.  Oh!  How lonely I am, though in the midst of many.  Oh! How loneliness weighs upon Me.  I have no one to whom to say a word, with whom to pour Myself out, not even in love.  I am always sad and taciturn, because if I speak, I am not listened to.  Ah! My daughter, I beg you, I implore you, do not leave Me alone in so much loneliness; give Me the good of letting Me speak by listening to Me; lend your ear to my teachings.  I am the master of masters.  How many things do I want to teach you!  If you listen to Me, you will stop my crying and I will amuse Myself with you.  Don’t you want to amuse yourself with Me?”

And as I abandoned myself in Him, giving Him my compassion in His loneliness, the interior voice continued:  “Enough, enough; move on to consider the sixth excess of my love.”

 

SIXTH EXCESS OF LOVE

 “My daughter, come, pray my dear Mama to set aside a little space for you within her maternal womb, that you yourself may see the painful state in which I find Myself.”  So, in my thoughts, it seemed that our Queen Mama made me a little room to make Jesus content, and placed me in it.  But the darkness was such that I could not see Him; I could only hear His breathing, while He continued to say in my interior:  “My daughter, look at another excess of my love.  I am the eternal light; the sun is a shadow of my light.  But do you see where my love led Me – in what a dark prison I am?  There is not a glimmer of light; it is always night for Me – but a night without stars, without rest.  I am always awake…what pain!  The narrowness of this prison – without being able to make the slightest movement; the thick darkness…; even my breathing, as I breathe through the breathing of my Mama – oh, how labored it is!  To this, add the darkness of the sins of creatures.  Each sin was a night for Me, and combined together they formed an abyss of darkness, with no boundaries.  What pain!  Oh, excess of my love – making Me pass from an immensity of light and space into an abyss of thick darkness, so narrow as to lose the freedom to breathe; and all this, for love of creatures.”

As He was saying this, He moaned – moans almost suffocated because of the lack of space; and He cried.  I was consumed with crying.  I thanked Him, I compassionated Him; I wanted to make Him a little light with my love, as He told me to.  But who can say all?  Then, the same interior voice added:  “Enough for now; move on to the seventh excess of my love.”

 

SEVENTH EXCESS OF LOVE

 The interior voice continued:  “My daughter, do not leave Me alone in so much loneliness and in so much darkness.  Do not leave the womb of my Mama, so you may see the seventh excess of my love.  Listen to Me:  in the womb of my Celestial Father I was fully happy; there was no good which I did not possess; joy, happiness – everything was at my disposal.  The angels adored Me reverently, hanging upon my every wish.  Ah, excess of my love!  I could say that it made Me change my destiny; it restrained Me within this gloomy prison; it stripped Me of all my joys, happinesses and goods, to clothe Me with all the unhappinesses of creatures – and all this in order to make an exchange, to give them my destiny, my joys and my eternal happiness.  But this would have been nothing had I not found in them highest ingratitude and obstinate perfidy.  Oh, how my eternal love was surprised in the face of so much ingratitude, and how it cried over the stubbornness and perfidy of man.  Ingratitude was the sharpest thorn that pierced my heart, from my conception up to the last moment of my life.  Look at my little heart – it is wounded, and pours out blood.  What pain!  What torture I feel!  My daughter, do not be ungrateful to Me.  Ingratitude is the hardest pain for your Jesus – it is to close the door in my face, leaving Me numb with cold.  But my love did not stop at so much ingratitude; it took the attitude of supplicating, imploring, moaning and begging love.  This is the eighth excess of my love.”

 

EIGHTH EXCESS OF LOVE

 “My daughter, do not leave Me alone; place your head upon the womb of my dear Mama, and even from the outside you will hear my moans and my supplications.  In seeing that neither my moans nor my supplications move the creature to compassion for my love, I assume the attitude of the poorest of beggars; and stretching out my little hand, I ask – for pity’s sake, and at least as alms – for their souls, for their affections and for their hearts.  My love wanted to win over the heart of man at any cost; and in seeing that after seven excesses of my love, he was still reluctant, he played deaf, he did not care about Me and did not want to give himself to Me, my love wanted to push itself further.  It should have stopped; but no, it wanted to overflow even more from within its boundaries; and from the womb of my Mama, it made my voice reach every heart, with the most insinuating manners, with the most fervent prayers, with the most penetrating words.  And do you know what I said to them?  ‘My child, give me your heart; I will give you everything you want, provided that you give Me your heart in exchange.  I have descended from Heaven to make a prey of it.  O please, do not deny it to Me!  Do not delude my hopes!’  And in seeing him reluctant – even more, many turned their backs to Me – I passed on to moaning; I joined my little hands and, crying, with a voice suffocated by sobs, I added:  ‘Ohh! Ohh! I am the little beggar; you don’t want to give Me your heart – not even as alms?  Is this not a greater excess of my love; that the Creator, in order to approach the creature, takes the form of a little baby so as not to strike fear in him; that He asks for the heart of the creature, at least as alms, and in seeing that he does not want to give it, He supplicates, moans and cries?”

Then I heard Him say:  “And you, don’t you want to give Me your heart?  Or maybe you too want Me to moan, beg and cry in order to give Me your heart?  Do you want to deny Me the alms I ask of you?”  And as He was saying this I heard Him as though sobbing, and I:  ‘My Jesus, do not cry, I give You my heart and all of myself.’  Then, the interior voice continued:  “Move further; pass on to the ninth excess of my love.”

 

NINETH EXCESS OF LOVE

 “My daughter, my state is ever more painful.  If you love Me, keep your gaze fixed on Me, to see if you can offer some relief to your Jesus; a little word of love, a caress, a kiss, will give respite to my crying and to my afflictions.  Listen my daughter, after I gave eight excesses of my love, and man requited them so badly, my love did not give up and wanted to add the ninth excess to the eighth.  And this was yearnings, sighs of fire, flames of desire, for I wanted to go out of the maternal womb to  embrace man.  This reduced my little Humanity, not yet born, to such an agony as to reach the point of breathing my last.  But as I was about to breathe my last, my Divinity, which was inseparable from Me, gave Me sips of life, and so I regained life to continue my agony, and return again to the point of death.  This was the ninth excess of my love:  to agonize and to die of love continuously for the creature.  Oh! What a long agony of nine months!  Oh! How love suffocated Me and made Me die.  Had I not had the Divinity with Me, which gave Me life again every time I was about to finish, love would have consumed Me before coming out to the light of day.”

Then He added:  “Look at Me, listen to Me, how I agonize, how my heart beats, pants, burns.  Look at Me – now I die.”  And He remained in deep silence.  I felt like dying.  My blood froze in my veins, and trembling, I said to Him:  ‘My Love, my Life, do not die, do not leave me alone.  You want love, and I will love You; I will not leave You ever again.  Give me your flames to be able to love You more, and be consumed completely for You.’

Fiat!

 

 

 

 

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Dec 15

Jesus and His Celestial Mama Especially During His Passion

JESUS AND HIS CELESTIAL MAMA, ESPECIALLY  DURING HIS PASSION

FROM THE BOOK OF HEAVEN

 

 Our Lord Jesus Christ to the Servant of God, Luisa Piccarreta,
The Little Daughter of the Divine Will

lUISA pICTURE

VOLUME 11

May 9, 1913

Jesus and His Celestial Mama, especially during His Passion. 

While praying, I was thinking about that moment in which Jesus leaves His Most Holy Mother to go and suffer His Passion. I said to myself: ‘How is it possible that Jesus could separate Himself from His dear Mama, and She from Jesus?’ Blessed Jesus told me: “My daughter, surely there could not be separation between Me and my sweet Mama. The separation was only apparent. She and I were fused together, and the fusion was so great that I remained with Her, while She came with Me. One can say that there was a sort of bilocation. This happens also to the souls when they are truly united with Me. If, while praying, they let prayer enter into their souls as life, a sort of fusion and bilocation occurs: I bring them with Me, wherever I am, and I remain with them.

My daughter, you cannot comprehend well what my beloved Mama was for Me. Coming upon earth, I could not be without Heaven, so my Heaven was my Mama. Electricity would flow between Us, such that my Mother had not a thought, which She did not draw from my mind. This drawing from Me of word, will, desire, action, step – in sum, of everything – formed the Sun, the stars, the moon in this Heaven, together with all the possible delights that a creature can give Me, and that she herself can enjoy. Oh, how I delighted in this Heaven! Oh, how I felt relieved and repaid for everything! Even the kisses that my Mama gave Me enclosed the kiss of all humanity, returning to Me the kiss of all creatures.

I felt my sweet Mama everywhere. I felt Her in my breath. If it was labored, She would release it. I felt Her in my Heart. If It was embittered, She would sweeten It. I felt Her in my step. If it was tired, She would give Me strength and rest… Who can tell you how much I felt Her in my Passion? I felt Her at every scourging, at every thorn, at every wound, at every drop of my Blood – everywhere, fulfilling Her office of true Mother. Ah, if souls reciprocated Me, if they drew everything from Me – how many Heavens and Mothers would I have on earth!”

 

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Dec 13

12/14 Third Sunday of Advent

12/14 Third Sunday of Advent

This Sunday is called “Gaudete” (Rejoice).  The whole of this Mass is filled with the sentiments of joy with which the Church wishes our souls to be filled at the approach of the Savior.

Book of Heaven
12/13/28 – Vol. 25

How all created things possess a dose of happiness.  

I was fusing myself in the Holy Divine Volition, and as I accompanied Its acts done in the Creation, my sweet Jesus, moving in my interior, told me:  “My daughter, all created things were created by Us with a dose of happiness, one distinct from the other; so, each created thing brings to man the kiss, the air that delights, the life of Our Happiness.  But do you know who feels all the effects of Our many Happinesses that are spread in the Creation descend into her interior, to the point of remaining soaked with them like a sponge?  One who lives in Our Divine Will. 

“Our Happinesses are not foreign to her, because, since she has her taste purified by Our Fiat and not corrupted by the human will, her taste and all of her senses have the virtue of enjoying all the happinesses that are present in the created things, and We feel so much happiness and joy in seeing one who does Our Will as though sitting at the table of Our Happinesses and feeding herself with as many different bites for as many as are the happinesses present in the created things.  Oh! how beautiful it is to see the creature happy.”

At that moment, Jesus kept silent, and I heard the sound of the harmonium playing in the chapel; and Jesus pricked up His ears to listen, and then He added:  “Oh! how happy I feel because this sound delights the little daughter of My Will.  And I, in hearing it, delight together with her.  Oh! how beautiful it is to be delighted together.  To make one who loves Me happy is the greatest of My Happinesses.”

And I:  “Jesus, my Love, my happiness for me is You alone, all other things hold no attraction over me.”

And Jesus:  “Certainly the greatest happiness for you is I, because I contain the source of all joys and happinesses; but I enjoy in giving you the small happinesses, and just as I Myself feel them and enjoy them, I want you to feel them and enjoy them together with Me.” . . .

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Dec 12

12/12 – Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe

The Apparitions And Miracle of Our Lady Of Guadalupe

The Apparitions and the Miracle

All written narrations about the apparitions of the Lady of Guadalupe are inspired by the Nican Mopohua, or Huei Tlamahuitzoltica, written in Nahuatl, the Aztec language, by the Indian scholar Antonio Valeriano around the middle of the sixteenth century.
Unfortunately the original of his work has not been found. A copy was first published in Nahuatl by Luis Lasso de la Vega in 1649. Its cover is shown here.

Here follows an English translation:

Ten years after the seizure of the city of Mexico, war came to an end and there was peace amongst the people; in this manner faith started to bud, the understanding of the true God, for whom we live. At that time, in the year fifteen hundred and thirty one, in the early days of the month of December, it happened that there lived a poor Indian, named Juan Diego, said being a native of Cuautitlan. Of all things spiritually he belonged to Tlatilolco.

FIRST   APPARITION

On a Saturday just before dawn, he was on his way to pursue divine worship and to engage in his own errands. As he reached the base of the hill known as Tepeyac, came the break of day, and he heard singing atop the hill, resembling singing of varied beautiful birds.
Occasionally the voices of the songsters would cease, and it appeared as if the mount responded. The song, very mellow and delightful, excelled that of the coyoltototl and the tzinizcan and of other pretty singing birds. Juan Diego stopped to look and said to himself: “By fortune, am I worthy of what I hear? Maybe I dream? Am I awakening? Where am I? Perhaps I am now in the terrestrial paradise which our elders had told us about? Perhaps I am now in heaven?” He was looking toward the east, on top of the mound, from whence came the precious celestial chant; and then it suddenly ceased and there was silence. He then heard a voice from above the mount saying to him: “Juanito, Juan Dieguito.” Then he ventured and went to where he was called. He was not frightened in the least; on the contrary, overjoyed.
Then he climbed the hill, to see from were he was being called. When he reached the summit, he saw a Lady, who was standing there and told him to come hither. Approaching her presence, he marveled greatly at her superhuman grandeur; her garments were shining like the sun; the cliff where she rested her feet, pierced with glitter, resembling an anklet of precious stones, and the earth sparkled like the rainbow. The mezquites, nopales, and other different weeds, which grow there, appeared like emeralds, their foliage like turquoise, and their branches and thorns glistened like gold. He bowed before her and herd her word, tender and courteous, like someone who charms and steems you highly.

She said: “Juanito, the most humble of my sons, where are you going?” He replied: “My Lady and Child, I have to reach your church in Mexico, Tlatilolco, to pursue things divine, taught and given to us by our priests, delegates of Our Lord.” She then spoke to him: “Know and understand well, you the most humble of my son, that I am the ever virgin Holy Mary, Mother of the True God for whom we live, of the Creator of all things, Lord of heaven and the earth. I wish that a temple be erected here quickly, so I may therein exhibit and give all my love, compassion, help, and protection, because I am your merciful mother, to you, and to all the inhabitants on this land and all the rest who love me, invoke and confide in me; listen there to their lamentations, and remedy all their miseries, afflictions and sorrows. And to accomplish what my clemency pretends, go to the palace of the bishop of Mexico, and you will say to him that I manifest my great desire, that here on this plain a temple be built to me; you will accurately relate all you have seen and admired, and what you have heard. Be assured that I will be most grateful and will reward you, because I will make you happy and worthy of recompense for the effort and fatigue in what you will obtain of what I have entrusted. Behold, you have heard my mandate, my humble son; go and put forth all your effort.”

At this point he bowed before her and said: “My Lady, I am going to comply with your mandate; now I must part from you, I, your humble servant.” Then he descended to go to comply with the errand, and went by the avenue which runs directly into Mexico City.

SECOND   APPARITION

Having entered the city, and without delay, he went straight to the bishop’s palace, who was the recently arrived prelate named Father Juan de Zumarraga, a Franciscan religious. On arrival, he endeavored to see him; he pleaded with the servants to announce him; and after a long wait, he was called and advised that the bishop had ordered his admission. As he entered, he bowed, and on bended knees before him, he then delivered the message from the lady from heaven; he also told him all he had admired, seen, and heard. After having heard his chat and message, it appeared incredible; then he told him: “You will return, my son, and I will hear you at my pleasure. I will review it from the beginning and will give thought to the wishes and desires for which you have come.” He left and he seemed sad, because his message had not been realized in any of its forms.

He returned on the same day. He came directly to the top of the hill, met the Lady from heaven, who was awaiting him, in the same spot where he saw her the first time. Seeing her, postrated before her, he said: “Lady, the least of my daughters, my Child, I went where you sent me to comply with your command. With difficulty I entered the prelate’s study. I saw him and exposed your message, just as you instructed me. He received me benevolently and listened attentively, but when he replied, it appeared that he did not believe me. He said: “You will return; I will hear you at my pleasure. I will review from the beginning the wish and desire which you have brought.” I perfectly understood by the manner he replied that he believes it to be an invention of mine that you wish that a temple be built here to you, and that it is not your order; for which I exceedingly beg, Lady and my Child, that you entrust the delivery of your message to someone of importance, well known, respected, and esteemed, so that they may believe in him; because I am a nobody, I am a small rope, a tiny ladder, the tail end, a leaf, and you, my Child, the least of my children, my Lady, you send me to a place where I never visit nor repose. Please excuse the great unpleasantness and let not fretfulness befall, my Lady and my All.”
The Blessed Virgin answered: “Hark, my son the least, you must understand that I have many servants and messengers, to whom I must entrust the delivery of my message, and carry my wish, but it is of precise detail that you yourself solicit and assist and that through your mediation my wish be complied. I earnestly implore, my son the least, and with sternness I command that you again go tomorrow and see the bishop. You go in my name, and make known my wish in its entirety that he has to start the erection of a temple which I ask of him. And again tell him that I, in person, the ever-virgin Holy Mary, Mother of God, sent you.”

Juan Diego replied: “Lady, my Child, let me not cause you affliction. Gladly and willingly I will go to comply your mandate. Under no condition will I fail to do it, for not even the way is distressing. I will go to do your wish, but perhaps I will not be heard with liking, or if I am heard I might not be believed. Tomorrow afternoon, at sunset, I will come to bring you the result of your message with the prelate’s reply. I now take leave, my Child, the least, my Child and Lady. Rest in the meantime.” He then left to rest in his home.

THIRD   APPARITION

The next day, Sunday, before dawn, he left home on his way to Tlatilolco, to be instructed in things divine, and to be present for roll call, following which he had to see the prelate. Nearly at ten, and swiftly, after hearing Mass and being counted and the crowd had dispersed, he went. On the hour Juan Diego left for the palace of the bishop. Hardly had he arrived, he eagerly tried to see him. Again with much difficulty he was able to see him. He kneeled before his feet. He saddened and cried as he expounded the mandate of the Lady from heaven, which God grant he would believe his message, and the wish of the Immaculate, to erect her temple where she willed it to be. The bishop, to assure himself, asked many things, where he had seen her and how she looked; and he described everything perfectly to the bishop. Notwithstanding his precise explanation of her figure and all that he had seen and admired, which in itself reflected her as being the ever-virgin Holy Mother of the Saviour, Our Lord Jesus Christ, nevertheless, he did not give credence and said that not only for his request he had to do what he had asked; that, in addition, a sign was very necessary, so that he could be believed that he was sent by the true Lady from heaven. Therefore, he was heard, said Juan Diego to the bishop: “My lord, hark! what must be the sign that you ask? For I will go to ask the Lady from heaven who sent me here.” The bishop, seeing that he ratified everything without doubt and was not retracting anything, dismissed him. Immediately he ordered some persons of his household, in whom he could trust, to go and watch where he went and whom he saw and to whom he spoke. So it was done. Juan Diego went straight to the avenue. Those that followed him, as they crossed the ravine, near the bridge to Tepeyacac, lost sight of him. They searched everywhere, but he could not be seen. Thus they returned, not only because they were disgusted, but also because they were hindered in their intent, causing them anger. And that is what they informed the bishop, influencing him not to believe Juan Diego; they told him that he was being deceived; that Juan Diego was only forging what he was saying, or that he was simply dreaming what he said and asked. They finally schemed that if he ever returned, they would hold and punish him harshly, so that he would never lie or deceive again.

In the meantime, Juan Diego was with the Blessed Virgin, relating the answer he was bringing from his lordship, the bishop. The lady, having heard, told him: “Well and good, my little dear, you will return here tomorrow, so you may take to the bishop the sign he has requested. With this he will believe you, and in this regard he will not doubt you nor will he be suspicious of you; and know, my little dear, that I will reward your solicitude and effort and fatigue spent of my behalf. Lo! go now. I will await you here tomorrow.”

FOURTH   APPARITION

On the following day, Monday, when Juan Diego was to carry a sign so he could be believed, he failed to return, because, when he reached his home, his uncle, named Juan Bernardino, had become sick, and was gravely ill. First he summoned a doctor who aided him; but it was too late, he was gravely ill. By nightfall, his uncle requested that by break of day he go to Tlatilolco and summon a priest, to prepare him and hear his confession, because he was certain it was time for him to die, and that he would not arise or get well.

On Tuesday, before dawn, Juan Diego came from his home to Tlatilolco to summon a priest; and as he approached the road which joins the slope to Tepeyacac hilltop, toward the west, where he was accustomed to cross, said: “If I proceed forward, the Lady is bound to see me, and I may be detained, so I may take the sign to the prelate, as prearranged; that our first affliction must let us go hurriedly to call a priest, as my poor uncle certainly awaits him.” Then he rounded the hill, going around, so he could not be seen by her who sees well everywhere. He saw her descend from the top of the hill and was looking toward where they previously met. She approached him at the side of the hill and said to him: “What’s there, my son the least? Where are you going?” Was he grieved, or ashamed, or scared? He bowed before her. He saluted, saying: “My Child, the most tender of my daughters, Lady, God grant you are content. How are you this morning? Is your health good, Lady and my Child? I am going to cause you grief. Know, my Child, that a servant of yours is very sick, my uncle. He has contracted the plague, and is near death. I am hurrying to your house in Mexico to call one of your priests, beloved by our Lord, to hear his confession and absolve him, because, since we were born, we came to guard the work of our death. But if I go, I shall return here soon, so I may go to deliver your message. Lady and my Child, forgive me, be patient with me for the time being. I will not deceive you, the least of my daughters. Tomorrow I will come in all haste.”
After hearing Juan Diego’s chat, the Most Holy Virgin answered: “Hear me and understand well, my son the least, that nothing should frighten or grieve you. Let not your heart be disturbed. Do not fear that sickness, nor any other sickness or anguish. Am I not here, who is your Mother? Are you not under my protection? Am I not your health? Are you not happily within my fold? What else do you wish? Do not grieve nor be disturbed by anything. Do not be afflicted by the illness of your uncle, who will not die now of it. be assured that he is now cured.” (And then his uncle was cured, as it was later learned.)

When Juan Diego heard these words from the Lady from heaven, he was greatly consoled. He was happy. He begged to be excused to be off to see the bishop, to take him the sign or proof, so that he might be believed. The Lady from heaven ordered to climb to the top of the hill, where they previously met. She told him: “Climb, my son the least, to the top of the hill; there where you saw me and I gave you orders, you will find different flowers. Cut them, gather them, assemble them, then come and bring them before my presence.” Immediately Juan Diego climbed the hill, and as he reached the summit, he was amazed that so many varieties of exquisite rosas de Castilla were blooming, long before the time when they are to bud, because, being out of season, they would freeze. They were very fragant and covered with dewdrops of the night, which resembled precious pearls. Immediately he started cutting them. He gathered them all and placed them in his tilma. The hilltop was no place for any kind of flowers to grow, because it had many crags, thistles, thorns, nopales and mezquites. Occasionally weeds would grow, but it was then the month of December, in which all vegetation is destroyed by freezing. He immediately went down the hill and brought the different roses which he had cut to the Lady from heaven, who, as she saw them, took them with her hand and again placed them back in the tilma, saying: “My son the least, this diversity of roses is the proof and the sign which you will take to the bishop. You will tell him in my name that he will see in them my wish and that he will have to comply to it. You are my ambassador, most worthy of all confidence. Rigorously I command you that only before the presence of the bishop will you unfold your mantle and disclose what you are carrying. You will relate all and well; you will tell that I ordered you to climb to the hilltop, to go and cut flowers; and all that you saw and admired, so you can induce the prelate to give his support, with the aim that a temple be built and erected as I have asked.”

After the Lady from heaven had given her advice, he was on his way by the avenue that goes directly to Mexico; being happy and assured of success, carrying with great care what he bore in his tilma, being careful; that nothing would slip from his hands, and enjoying the fragrance of the variety of the beautiful flowers.

THE   MIRACLE OF THE IMAGE

When he reached the bishop’s palace, there came to meet him the majordomo and other servants of the prelate. He begged them to tell the bishop that he wished to see him, but none were willing, pretending not to hear him, probably because it was too early, or because they already knew him as being of the molesting type, because he was pestering them; and, moreover, they had been advised by their co-workers that they had lost sight of him, when they had followed him.
He waited a long time. When they saw that he had been there a long time, standing, crestfallen, doing nothing, waiting to be called, and appearing like he had something which he carried in his tilma, they came near him, to see what he had and to satisfy themselves. Juan Diego, seeing that he could not hide what he had, and on account of that he would be molested, pushed or mauled, uncovered his tilma a little, and there were the flowers; and upon seeing that they were all different rosas de Castilla, and out of season, they were thoroughly amazed, also because they were so fresh and in full bloom, so fragrant and so beautiful. They tried to seize and pull some out, but they were not successful the three times they dared to take them. They were not lucky because when then tried to get them, they were unable to see real flowers. Instead, they appeared painted or stamped or sewn on the cloth. Then they went to tell the bishop what they had seen and that the Indian who had come so many times wished to see him, and that he had reason enough so long anxiously eager to see him.

Upon hearing, the bishop realized that what he carried was the proof, to confirm and comply with what the Indian requested. Immediately he ordered his admission. As he entered, Juan Diego knelt before him, as he was accustomed to do, and again related what he had seen and admired, also the message. He said: “Sir, I did what you ordered, to go forth and tell my Ama, the Lady from heaven, Holy Mary, precious Mother of God, that you asked for a sign so that you might believe me that you should build a temple where she asked it to be erected; also, I told her that I had given you my word that I would bring some sign and proof, which you requested, of her wish. She condescended to your request and graciously granted your request, some sign and proof to complement her wish. Early today she again sent me to see you; I asked for the sign so you might believe me, as she had said that she would give it, and she complied. She sent me to the top of the hill, where I was accustomed to see her, and to cut a variety of rosas de Castilla. After I had cut them, I brought them, she took them with her hand and placed them in my cloth, so that I bring them to you and deliver them to you in person. Even though I knew that the hilltop was no place where flowers would grow, because there are many crags, thistles, thorns, nopales and mezquites, I still had my doubts. As I approached the top of the hill, I saw that I was in paradise, where there was a great variety of exquisite rosas de Castilla, in brilliant dew, which I immediately cut. She had told me that I should bring them to you, and so I do it, so that you may see in them the sign which you asked of me and comply with her wish; also, to make clear the veracity of my word and my message. Behold. Receive them.”
He unfolded his white cloth, where he had the flowers; and when they scattered on the floor, all the different varieties of rosas de Castilla, suddenly there appeared the drawing of the precious Image of the ever-virgin Holy Mary, Mother of God, in the manner as she is today kept in the temple at Tepeyacac, which is named Guadalupe.
When the bishop saw the image, he and all who were present fell to their knees. She was greatly admired. They arose to see her; they shuddered and, with sorrow, they demonstrated that they contemplated her with their hearts and minds. The bishop, with sorrowful tears, prayed and begged forgiveness for not having attended her wish and request. When he rose to his feet, he untied from Juan Diego’s neck the cloth on which appeared the Image of the Lady from heaven. Then he took it to be placed in his chapel. Juan Diego remained one more day in the bishop’s house, at his request.

The following day he told him: Well! show us where the Lady from heaven wished her temple be erected.” Immediately, he invited all those present to go.

APPARITION   TO JUAN BERNARDINO

As Juan Diego pointed out the spot where the lady from heaven wanted her temple built, he begged to be excused. He wished to go home to see his uncle Juan Bernardino, who was gravely ill when he left him to go to Tlatilolco to summon a priest, to hear his confession and absolve him. The Lady from heaven had told him that he had been cured. But they did not let him go alone, and accompanied him to his home.
As they arrived, they saw that his uncle was very happy and nothing ailed him. He was greatly amazed to see his nephew so accompanied and honored, asking the reason of such honors conferred upon him. His nephew answered that when he went to summon a priest to hear his confession and to absolve him, the Lady from heaven appeared to him at Tepeyacac, telling him not to be afflicted, that his uncle was well, for which he was greatly consoled, and she sent him to Mexico, to see the bishop, to build her a house in Tepeyacac.
Then the uncle manifested that it was true that on that occasion he became well and that he had seen her in the same manner as she had appeared to his nephew, knowing through her that she had sent him to Mexico to see the bishop. Also, the Lady told him that when he would go to see the bishop, to reveal to him what he had seen and to explain the miraculous manner in which she had cured him, and that she would properly be named, and known as the blessed Image, the ever-virgin Holy Mary of Guadalupe.
Juan Bernardino was brought before the presence of the bishop to inform and testify before him. Both he and his nephew were the guests of the bishop in his home for some days, until the temple dedicated to the Queen of Tepeyacac was erected where Juan Diego had seen her.

The bishop transferred the sacred Image of the lovely lady from heaven to the main church, taking her from his private chapel where it was, so that the people would see and admire her blessed Image. The entire city was aroused; they came to see and admire the devout Image, and to pray. They marveled at the fact that she appeared as did her divine miracle, because no living person of this world had painted her precious Image.

 

 

Our Lady of Guadalupe

Mesoamerica, the New World, 1521: The capital city of the Aztec empire falls under the Spanish forces. Less than 20 years later, 9 million of the inhabitants of the land, who professed for centuries a polytheistic and human sacrificing religion, are converted to Christianity. What happened in those times that produced such an incredible and historically unprecedented conversion?

In 1531 a “Lady from Heaven” appeared to a humble Native American at Tepeyac, a hill northwest of what is now Mexico City.
She identified herself as the ever virgin Holy Mary, Mother of the True God for whom we live, of the Creator of all things, Lord of heaven and the earth.
She made a request for a church to be built on the site, and submitted her wish to the local Bishop. When the Bishop hesitated, and requested her for a sign, the Mother of God obeyed without delay or question to the Church’s local Bishop, and sent her native messenger to the top of the hill in mid-December to gather an assorment of roses for the Bishop.
After complying to the Bishop’s request for a sign, She also left for us an image of herself imprinted miraculously on the native’s tilma, a poor quality cactus-cloth, which should have deteriorated in 20 years but shows no sign of decay 480 years later and still defies all scientific explanations of its origin.
It apparently even reflects in Her eyes what was in front of her in 1531.
Her message of love and compassion, and her universal promise of help and protection to all mankind, as well as the story of the apparitions, are described in the “Nican Mopohua”, a 16th century document written in the native Nahuatl language.
There is reason to believe that at Tepeyac Mary came in her glorified body, and her actual physical hands rearranged the roses in Juan Diego’s tilma, which makes this apparition very special.
An incredible list of miracles, cures and interventions are attributed to Her. Yearly, between 18 – 20 million pilgrims visit the Basilica, making it Christianity’s most visited sanctuary.
Altogether 25 popes have officially honored Our Lady of Guadalupe. His Holiness John Paul II visited her Sanctuary four times: on his first apostolic trip outside Rome as Pope in 1979, and again in 1990, 1999 and 2002.
The Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe is celebrated on December 12th. In 1999, Pope John Paul II, in his homily from the Solemn Mass at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, during his third visit to the sanctuary, declared the date of December the 12th as a Liturgical Holy Day for the whole continent.
During the same visit Pope John Paul II entrusted the cause of life to her loving protection, and placed under her motherly care the innocent lives of children, especially those who are in danger of not being born.

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