[The following testimony, or articles relating to Silvia Busi appears on many websites. This one has been extracted from an article by Jakob Marschner on www.medjugorje.ws. It has only been slightly edited by me]:
All the medical tests were negative when Silvia Busi fell very ill at 16. Within days, the normal Italian girl found herself in a wheelchair, unable to move her legs. Nine months later Silvia’s illness disappeared as suddenly as it had come about, during an apparition to Medjugorje visionary Ivan Dragicevic. “The gift of faith is the biggest one I got,” she says.
Instantly ill and crippled for months, then just as instantly cured. Life took place in drastic turns when Silvia was 16 and 17.
For nine months from October 2004 the student from Padua, Italy was a paraplegic confined to her wheelchair, unable to walk or move her legs. Silvia’s time as an invalid ended in June 2005 on top of Apparition Hill in Medjugorje when she stood up and walked after an apparition to visionary Ivan Dragicevic.
“Until the beginning of October 2004,” Silvia testified during a recent prayer meeting in Italy, “I was a normal girl going to school, having friends, dancing and swimming. Suddenly, within a few days, all that was blocked, though all the medical tests were negative.
“When I found myself in a wheelchair, my family and I lived through hard and painful moments. In the following months I began losing weight and my seizures got worse, limiting my life even more, and leading me to an emotional breakdown.”
Early on, Silvia’s mother turned to faith as the solution to her daughter’s condition. The home was Catholic but Silvia says she attended Sunday Mass only out of habit:
“My mother was our strength,” Silvia said. “Finding no answers with doctors, she turned to a priest who was very devoted to a Marian group. So we started to follow the group every Friday, along with praying the Rosary, going to Mass and Eucharistic Adoration. I followed my parents, though, only because I could not stay at home alone.
“In May, the month dedicated to the Madonna, my mother decided to attend the group every day and not only on Friday, and at least pray the Rosary and go to Mass. At first it was not easy for me but after a few weeks, I began to feel the need to go there because only there could I feel a little peace. Not being able to do the same things as my peers, in that place I felt the weight less.”
Silvia’s decision to go to Medjugorje was as sudden as her illness and her later cure:
“On June 20,” Silvia told the attendees at the prayer meeting, “my physical therapist told me that next week she would accompany her mother to Medjugorje. I asked if I could go with them, and after three days I found myself on the bus to Medjugorje with my father. We arrived in the morning of June 24, the Feast of Saint John the Baptist, but also the anniversary of the first apparition.”
When Silvia heard that visionary Ivan was to have a public apparition in the evening, she immediately decided to go there, though she thought it would be impossible to bring her wheelchair to the top of Apparition Hill. Instead, she was carried to the hilltop where she arrived at 8:00 pm, two hours before the apparition.
“That is my earliest memory of prayer really done with the heart. Those two hours flew away. Sitting next to me, my group leader told me to address the Madonna because shortly thereafter she would come down from Heaven to listen to all of us. Then I asked Her for the strength to serenely accept and face a life in a wheelchair because I was seventeen, and the future terrified me so.
“During Ivan’s apparition,” Silvia testified, “I saw a light to my left: white, beautiful, very vocal and loud but I could look at it because I did not get blinded. When I saw it, I was afraid and I lowered my eyes not to look at it but it was also good and I could not help but watch it. Thus, throughout the apparition, I always looked at this light through the corner of my eye.”
After the apparition, Silvia’s carriers lost her, and she fell on the hard hillside stones. But Silvia did not feel the rocks, she said. Instead her healing took place:
“I remember it as if I was being on a soft mattress and not on those hard and sharp rocks. I also remember a very sweet voice which spoke to me and calmed me. After a few minutes, I opened my eyes and my father was crying. But for the first time in nine months, I could feel my legs; I felt I leaned on something. Then I told my father ‘I am cured; I can walk!’
“There was a hand stretched out in front of me. I grabbed it and I found myself on my feet as if it were the most natural thing. I burst into tears because this was something bigger than me. I could never have imagined this. Then I started to walk. My legs were very thin but I was sure I would never fall because I felt some invisible strings that held me from behind, and I was sure that I would not fall and get hurt.”
The next morning, at about five o’clock, Silvia climbed Cross Mountain to pray the Way of the Cross along with her group. When she returned from Medjugorje, only the seizures were left of her illness. For them to disappear took another Medjugorje involvement:
“I continued to have seizures,” Silvia said, “but thanks be to God they went over. At first I was very shy and did not witness, and then I had many seizures during the day. Then Fr. Ljubo Kurtovic, a priest from Medjugorje, came to Turin for a prayer meeting and he told me to give thanks and praise to God for the gift He gave me.”
She was happy to pray the Rosary and give her testimony, then thought that was it. But it was not:
“Before I went away, Fr Ljubo prayed over me, blessed me and a few days later all the seizures disappeared. After a year I stopped taking medicine and now, thanks be to God, I am fine.”
Though Silvia is now completely healed, she does not consider that the biggest gift she got:
“The greatest grace that God gave me and my family was to rediscover the grace of God, faith and conversion. The road is very long; we just started and then it continues for a lifetime. The difficulties are there and no-one is immune to this but with the power of faith and prayer, you are able to overcome and deal with them.
“With this conversion, it is as if God has lit a fire inside me. But as fire is being fed with wood, so faith must be nourished by prayer. And by the Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, the Rosary, reading the Bible, fasting and Confession at least once a month. With all this, the fire is not quenched, even if a little wind is blowing.
“For me this is really the most important and beautiful in life. I pray with all my heart to every day experience more of the love of God and the Madonna which is immense, and the same for each of us.”