MY LIFE FOR THE GOSPA
Dear friends, at regular intervals, I tell you on the blog the story of the apparitions of Our Lady in Medjugorje, as I have lived it from the earliest years until today. Fr Livio
The announcement of eternal life is undoubtedly the central message of the Queen of Peace. Indeed the invitation to conversion is in view of the salvation of souls. Our Lady has said several times that she is here because she wants all her children to be with her in paradise.
The afterlife perspective runs through all messages. The very fact that every day the Blessed Virgin descends from heaven to earth and then she returns there is an extraordinary catechesis on the meaning of human life, which comes from God and returns to him. The pilgrim who goes to Medjugorje feels as if the heavens were open to that oasis of peace and that the light of eternity envelops the vast plain from where prayer rises incessantly.
In Medjugorje it is as if heaven and earth were in symbiosis. Isn’t the Mother of God the Queen of heaven and earth? To today’s man, by now accustomed to no longer looking up and full of doubts about the afterlife, the pilgrimage to Medjugorje opens up a new horizon, beyond the miseries and darkness of a world increasingly similar to a suffocating prison.
As you climb the mountain of apparitions or Krizevac you look up from where Our Lady comes every day and you realize that up there is your home, the place where a place has been prepared for you. At each apparition the heart leaps. Heaven has come down to earth and radiates its peace upon you.
How could the presence of the “Tota Pulchra”, which reflects the glory of the risen Christ, not arouse in the hearts of her children the desire for paradise? This is in fact one of the most precious effects of the pilgrimage to Medjugorje, especially if repeated over time.
Paradise becomes the goal of the journey, the goal to strive for day by day, the yearning desire of the soul. The Mother attracts herself, protects her mantle under her, holds our hands tightly and leads us towards the glory of the Son, in the heart of the Most Holy Trinity.
The Gospa very soon began to show the afterlife to the six seers. By saying that you came to reawaken faith, you wanted to touch on a point of extreme weakness, life after death, in which a dark shadow has fallen over the souls of many baptized persons.
How many of those who attend church truly believe in eternal life? What about those who go to church only for funerals, sad and resigned as if two shovelfuls of earth on the coffin were the end of life?
There are those who reproach the Church of our time for having lost the eschatological perspective. We cannot say that this is the case in liturgical prayer and in the teaching of the Magisterium. However, it is so in the ordinary catechesis of many parishes, where the ultimate realities, the “Newest”, have given way to contingent problems.
The consequence is that many Christians live without the prospect of heaven and the holy fear of hell, now downgraded to an uninhabited building. The danger to souls is mortal. This is demonstrated by the state of unpreparedness and spiritual drowsiness with which they face the passage into eternity.
Our Lady came as Queen of Peace, but peace on earth is possible if one is at peace with Heaven. Her first goal is to take souls to heaven. Mary’s plan, which goes from Fatima to Medjugorje, starts from the observation, reaffirmed in both apparitions, that “many souls go to hell”.
This irreparable catastrophe is being consumed while many in the Church irresponsibly maintain that Satan is a symbol, that hell is empty, that the devils will convert. In this way they put themselves at their service by misleading souls.
The Gospa immediately began her catechesis on the afterlife, telling Ivanka that her mother, who died two months earlier, was with her in heaven. On November 2, 1981, on the occasion of the commemoration of the faithful departed, you showed the seers paradise. (Everyone was present, except Ivan, to whom he will be shown on another occasion).
Four days later, during the apparition, Our Lady suddenly disappeared and hell opened up before the seers. Vicka, Jakov and Marija saw it. The Madonna, always during her apparition, also showed purgatory.
It does not appear that in other apparitions of modern times the Holy Virgin has revealed the afterlife with such strong and complete strokes. The description given by the visionaries does not differ from traditional images, which aim to convey the message by accentuating realism.
However they are aware that any description in our words is inadequate. Paradise “is inexpressibly beautiful. It is something wonderful and indescribable. Everything is filled with a wonderful light…people…flowers…angels…Everything is full of unspeakable joy…It’s so beautiful that your heart stops when you look at it” (Vicka).
Hell is “scary; it looked like a sea of fire; there were a lot of people inside. All blackened, they looked like devils. In the middle of her a blonde woman, with long hair and horns and the devils attacking her from all sides. She was awful and that was it” (Vicka).
Purgatory appeared as a dark place, shrouded in thick fog, where the moans of souls are heard. Marija told me that the fog was clearing from the bottom up, as if to indicate the process of purification of souls.
The pictures speak for themselves. Our Lady accompanied them with brief but incisive words: “I have shown you paradise, to show you what happiness awaits those who love God” (02-011-1981). “You have seen hell, where sinners end up. I have shown it to you so that you know the condition of those who are there” (06-11-1981). The purpose is to show what the outcome of life will be, depending on how we live.
A fortnight after showing heaven to the seers, the “Gospa” performed an absolutely unprecedented gesture in the history of Marian apparitions. She brought together two seers, Vicka and Jakov, with their bodies to visit heaven, purgatory and hell.
There are testimonies of this kind in the lives of saints, but they are individual mystical experiences. Here, however, two boys were taken away from the Madonna for about twenty minutes. Jakov’s mother had looked in vain for the two boys who, when Our Lady came, were at home leafing through a photo album.
The “Gospa” greeted them with “Praised be Jesus Christ” and told them she would take them to heaven. “We got scared. Jakov (he was ten years old then) started screaming and crying. He said he didn’t want to go because his mother only has him; so that I went there alone, since we are seven brothers” (Vicka).
Jakov doesn’t deny his reluctance, but he explained to me that it was enough for him to see the Madonna and that it seemed too much for him to go and see the afterlife as well. The Queen of Heaven “said nothing. While we were still on our knees, she took us by the hand: me by the right and he by the left; she placed herself between us with her face turned towards us.
..The ceiling opened and we started to climb” (Vicka) . Vicka looked down and saw the earth getting smaller and smaller, while Jakov, afraid, didn’t look down. In a few moments they have arrived in paradise. “While she showed us heaven, hell and purgatory, Our Lady looked where we looked” (Vicka).
It should be emphasized that the Madonna herself accompanied the two boys all the time. She guided, supported and enlightened them. The description of the afterlife that is given by the two visionaries is identical and does not differ from that given a short time before during the apparition.
Both Vicka and Jakov told me that the joy they experienced in heaven is different from the one experienced during the apparition and is greater. A trace of this joy has remained in their hearts. Our Lady brought the two boys back to the house, to the kitchen where they were before. She said goodbye to them and then she left.
The boy was a little swollen and looked tired, but he calmed down. In fact, the last vision had been that of hell. “Jakov’s mother asked us where we were hiding, why she was looking for us. She started to cry when she saw what her son looked like. We somehow calmed down and she with us. Then some from the neighborhood came and we told them too… They believed it. It was still evident about us that we had experienced something; something unusual” (Vicka).
Vicka is tireless in witnessing this extraordinary event to pilgrims. “He told us to tell about it. Otherwise why would she have let us see it?”. If Our Lady wanted to have such a strong experience, she has good reasons for her.
There are too many doubts concerning eternal life and the daily catechesis in this regard is rather weak. Hence the call to eternity that runs through the messages, especially in the month of November. His words, from those early times, are a light of truth on human life. They are an encouragement and a warning that we needed.
The Mother of God does not need to ask theologians or exegetes for information in this regard. Who better than you knows the real situation? “Most men, when they die, go to purgatory. Even a very large number go to hell. Only a small number of souls go straight to heaven. It is better for you to give up everything in order to be taken directly to heaven at the moment of your death (02-11-1983).
“In purgatory there are many souls, and among these also people consecrated to God. Pray for them at least seven Pater Ave and Gloria and the Creed. I recommend it! Many souls have been in purgatory for a long time because no one prays for them. In purgatory there are different levels: the lowest ones are close to hell, while the highest ones gradually approach heaven” (07-20-1982).
“ Today many go to hell. God allows his children to suffer in hell because they have committed very serious and unforgivable sins. Those who go to hell no longer have the possibility of knowing a better fate. The souls of the damned do not repent and continue to reject God. And there they curse him even more than they did before, when they were on earth. They become part of hell and do not want to be released from that place” (07-25-1982).
Our Lady also answered the objection that many raise. “Why does God send to hell, since He is infinite mercy?”. The visionary Mirjana interpreted it, who asked Our Lady not to show him hell. Our Lady replied by saying that God does not send to hell. We are the ones who want to go there.
It is a question of the tragic decision of human freedom to reject God and therefore of a self-exclusion, as the Magisterium of the Church also teaches (Catechism CC 1033). To hell, Vicka repeats as usual, those who want to go there go and who already in this life distance themselves from God and from his commandments and then only continue.
“Every adult person is capable of knowing God. The sin of the world consists in this: that it does not seek God at all. For those who now say they do not believe in God, how hard it will be when they approach the throne of the Most High to be condemned to hell” ( 03 – 02 – 1984)