Thursday, August 23, 2018


[I picked up the following article from the newsletter of Sr. Emmanuel, a Catholic nun who I believe resides, or at least spends a lot of her time, in Medjugorje. The article was dated 22 August 2018. It was accompanied by a YouTube video of the little girl, the subject of the article, walking. By the way, when someone believes they have been cured of some incurable disease or affliction as a result of either a visit to or some connection with Medjugorje, they must submit details to the local parish office whereupon the matter is subjected to a detailed medical and scientific investigation before it is accepted or circulated].

In the little village of Abeline, where Saint Maryam of Bethlehem was born, the Hahoud family was deeply distressed. Their three-year-old daughter, Eleanor, born with a disability, was doomed to never walk. A month earlier, an Israeli Catholic frier went to visit this stricken family.

Seeing the little girl, he had the idea of giving her son rose petals which he had brought back from Medjugorje and which had been blessed by the Mother of God during an apparition. The Gospa (Blessed Virgin Mary’s name in Croatian) when she appears to the visionaries actually blesses religious articles that are presented to her: rosaries, icons, crucifixes, medals as well as rose petals. Pilgrims then give them to those who cannot come, especially to the sick, as signs that their Heavenly Mother is willing to reach out to them through her maternal blessing.

With such simple signs received in faith and prayer, Mary does what she wants for the person who is suffering, giving them the graces she deems necessary.

Our friend, upon seeing little Eleanor, was overcome with compassion and began to hope for the impossible. He explained to the family where the petals were from, and left after having prayed with them. In the evening, the grandmother said to the mother, “Did you put the petals on your daughter’s legs?” “No,” answered the mother. “Well, what are you waiting for?” The mother placed the petals on her daughter’s lifeless legs, and after praying many Hail Marys, she went to bed, crying all night long because her heart was so heavy.

In the morning, the father, a construction worker, asked his wife, “Why don’t you go and see if Our Lady has done anything for Eleanor?” The mother went, tried to lift her daughter upright but — to her amazement — the little girl stood up on her own; she was comfortable standing on her two feet and started to walk in front of everyone. She went out into the courtyard and turned around several times, so amazed that she was finally able to walk.

Since then, Eleanor’s walking has come on in leaps and bounds, and the whole family continue blessing God for this miracle. Medical records attest to this healing which cannot be explained by science. The Gospa of Medjugorje visited this stricken family — how can we not cry out with joy?

Tuesday, June 26, 2018


[The following article, by Berniece Duello, was posted on the web with permission by Chicken Soup For The Soul LLC. I have copied it to here. It doesn’t necessarily describe a miracle. Then again, it might. You decide].

For all of my ninety years, I’ve had a great devotion to the Virgin Mary. I didn’t believe that Mary could answer prayers, but that she was an intercessor to her son, Jesus. While I was raising eight children, I needed all the interceding I could get! I turned to her often, mother to mother. A statue of the Blessed Virgin sat prominently on our buffet and fresh flowers adorned her, especially in May.

I knew Mary had appeared to youngsters in Lourdes, France, and to children in Guadalupe, Mexico. Then in the 1980s, I read new accounts of Mary appearing to youngsters in Medjugorje, Bosnia (and Hercegovina). Intrigued by the modern-day miracle, I bought books about it, subscribed to the Medjugorje Magazine, attended seminars on the topic… and bought a ticket to Bosnia (and Hercegovina).

At eighty years old, with  back problems and a mild heart condition, I didn’t know if I could climb the mountain, but I just knew I was supposed to go… to be there… to see where Mary had appeared.

I didn’t go planning to see a miracle, but many who had been there did. There were hundreds of accounts of miraculous healings and faith conversions.

Our tour group arrived in Medjugorje late one damp November night. The next morning we learned our scheduled trek had been postponed, due to the rain and slippery slopes. One younger man who had made the trip twice before, said he could wait no longer… he was climbing the mile-long mountain path right then.

I said, “Me too.”

So with more determination than strength, I set off for the climb. I was surprised to see the trail was only jagged rocks. Step by cautious step, I slowly hiked upward, past a woman even older than I kneeling in prayerful meditation… past a half dozen rowdy ten year old boys running and yelping with joy. They raced ahead of me; later I came upon them again kneeling in quiet prayer.

Within two hours, I stood in breathless wonder and awe at the top of the mountain, on the very site the virgin had appeared. I knelt in the sprinkling rain and did what I always do… I prayed for her children.

The trek was even more difficult than the ascent. Each step on the rugged rocks jarred me as I struggled to find stable footing. The rain intensified as we wound our way through the foreign streets of the city. I returned to the group, soaking wet but marvelling that, not only had I made the climb, I had done so without my usual pain. “Maybe that was the miracle,” I mused.

The next day was just another day in war-torn Bosnia (and Hercegovina), but it was Thanksgiving Day in the States… and the tour guide had a plan to make it a day of Thanksgiving in Medjugorje too. On every tour the staff purchased and distributed groceries and supplies to the most needy in the community. All of the dozen members of our tour group readily offered to contribute to the fund and help with the deliveries.

Our large bus stopped at the grocery store where the ordered bags of goods were loaded into the back. Carefully, we counted the twenty-four garbage-size bags. Local church and government officials had made a list of the twenty-four families in most desperate need, and the bus headed off to share Thanksgiving with them.

The first stop was a shanty with the roof partly blown off. My new friends and I filed past damaged household furniture sitting on the dirt lawn and entered the one room the family of four occupied. Laughing, smiling, and crying, the old couple accepted the food and supplies. Two young boys in clean ragged clothes chattered their gratitude while their toddler brother clung to the grandma’s leg, whining and fussing. Their parents were tortured and killed by the enemy, the tour guide had explained. Yet the family jubilantly hugged us goodbye and we headed off to the next stop.

The bus driver seemed to have the route and stops memorised from the many trips before. At the next run-down house, a wrinkled old woman in a headscarf stood waving from her cluttered front porch. As our group entered, she placed her hands on each of our faces and kissed us, one by one, thanking us in her native tongue. Inside we gathered in one of the two rooms left standing in her once three-bedroom home. There she prayed, not for herself, but for us, her guests.

The driver stopped next at a ramshackle house at the end of a lane, and before the tour guide could say, “They aren’t on our list this time,” a man and two young boys raced toward the bus clapping for joy. At the directive of the tour guide, the bus pulled away, leaving them looking forlorn and rejected.

“Can’t we please leave them some food?” I politely protested as I looked back at the family waving sadly.

“We only have twenty-four bags,” the guide explained, her voice thick with sorrow. “We have other families waiting for these. We promised them.”

The team sat, despondent, until the driver stopped at yet another war-damaged home. There, a couple who looked even older than I cared for two grown sons, both suffering from a wasting muscular disease. Yet their faith and joy exceeded ours as they crowded the entire group into their tiny kitchen to pray… and share food the old woman had prepared for us.

And so went the day, house after house, family after family, each physically destitute and spiritually wealthy.

“That’s twenty-four!” the guide said as she checked the last name off the list after the final stop.

“No, twenty-three,” someone corrected. “there is one bag of food left.”

Dumbfounded, the group looked in the back of the bus to see one lone bag of food.

“We all counted the bags and the people on the list three times,” one member said.

“There was no error,” our guide said, then beamed. “Are there loaves an fishes in that bag?”

The entire team stared at each other first in confusion, then in awe, then in elation. We cheered. “Let’s go!”

The bus returned to the ramshackle house at the end of the lane and the man and two boys raced out, as if they were expecting us.