The Apparitions of July 1-5, 2008 and 2009 at Caritas
July 1 was the first official day of the Five Days of Prayer. This day was a Day of Repentance and Seeking Forgiveness.
July 1, 2008
Today’s apparition took place at 11:40 AM in the Bedroom, while most of the pilgrims gathered in the Field. The priests who were present offered the Sacrament of Reconciliation to pilgrims where long lines formed behind each one. The founder of Caritas, also known as A Friend of Medjugorje, greeted the pilgrims and spoke on what Our Lady has revealed in Her messages concerning the need of personal repentance and how peace cannot be established in nations where the people themselves need to reconcile with God. It was for this grace that the pilgrims were led to pray to receive during Our Lady’s apparition today.
Responding to Our Lady’s choice to begin the July 1-5 gathering over the bed, the place where She began everything here 20 years ago in 1988, the founder of Caritas said, “I was surprised by this, but at the same time felt a joy and a little mystery that Our Lady started these special days leading up to July 4th from the Bedroom.” Sixteen years of seven novenas per year has resulted in the accumulation of tens of millions of prayers along with much fasting and many sacrifices for the gathering of the consecration of the United States of America into Our lady’s complete possession on July 4, 2008. The day of July 4, 2008 is viewed as a day pleading for deliverance. Our Lady choosing to appear in the Bedroom on July 1, instead of the Field, speaks of what the first day is dedicated to—a day, like as in the Old Testament city of Nineveh, in which all will spend it in repentance and seeking forgiveness in order to save ourselves and our nation. It all begins in the family and the bedroom signifies the need of the family to be healed, the spirit of the family to be strengthened. The nation will be healed with the families of the nation become strong. It is not by chance Our Lady chose to start the July 1-5 gathering by appearing over the family bed.
When the apparitions are in the Bedroom, the space is very limited. The founder will send out various community members, often he will send the youth of the community for this task, to go out amidst the crowds in the Field and choose, at random, several pilgrims to attend the apparition. Approximately 35 pilgrims were randomly chosen to attend the apparition of July 1, 2008, in the Bedroom, while the Community joined all the pilgrims in the Field. They leave the Field, entering the woods where the house is located. Though the majority of the pilgrims are not able to experience the intimacy of the Bedroom during an apparition, Our Lady always blesses every pilgrim from the Bedroom each day, and receives their prayers and intentions. The Bedroom is opened during the Five Days of Prayer for pilgrims to visit and to pray within it. It is a very moving experience for many, who leave the room in tears.
Marija during ecstasy on July 1, 2008. In the apparition of July 1st was a young boy who was terminally ill. Marija had all the children come into the room and pray during the apparition. Marija prayed not only for this young boy, but for all sick people who are gathered in these days, saying that what is impossible for man is possible for God. Our Lady said in the apparition, for the apparition tomorrow, July 2, 2008, “Same time, same place.”
The large crowds of pilgrims leave the Field after the apparition, on a beautiful blue-sky July day in Alabama.
July 1, 2009
Following the same format as the year before, this day was dedicated to a Day of Repentance and Seeking Forgiveness. Our Lady, just as the year before, started the event with Her apparitions in the Bedroom.
There is a grace attached to the Sacrament of Confession wherever Our Lady goes. Priests who attend the Five Days of Prayer at Caritas during the apparitions of Our Lady are always amazed at the depth of confessions by the pilgrims. Many, many pilgrims who they meet have not been to Confession or have received the Eucharist in years. From the very first day of the retreat, they have a burning desire to reconcile and return to the Church. This is always a beautiful gift that priests receive when they come to be with Our Lady.
While long lines form behind the priests hearing confession, another long line forms in the barn behind the rope swing. Caritas is a beautiful experience for the whole family. While the parents are able to spend the day in prayer, listening to Marija and A Friend of Medjugorje speak, visiting with other pilgrims from around the country, etc., there are so many things that their children love to do at Caritas—such as swinging on the rope swing in the barn, visiting the farm animals, go exploring in the woods. The children are given a balance of prayer and play—which makes them much more cooperative with their parents when it is time to pray the Rosary, or make a family visit to the Bedroom. In fact, seeing Caritas so “kid-friendly” they are often led, themselves, into a special encounter with Our Lady.
The apparition was in the Bedroom this evening, at 6:40 p.m. All the pilgrims headed back to the Field to begin praying the Rosary at 6:00 P.M. The Caritas Community, both the members living on the grounds of Caritas and the Extended Community members were present in the apparition tonight. It turned into a very special evening, as two members of the community became engaged to be married, surprising almost everyone present, including the future bride.
Marija was very involved in the preparations with a few others from the community, which included a surprise party that happened after the apparition. Marija gave to the newly engaged couple as a gift, a Holy Bible, that was placed on the Bed and blessed by Our Lady during the apparition.
In the apparition this evening, with several thousand people in the Field praying in union with all those in the Bedroom, Our Lady appeared also adding a few surprises of Her own. Following is Marija’s description of the apparition:
“In moment of apparition when Our Lady come She recommended all our intentions and Our Lady prayed over us and She blessed us. I ask special blessing for this Rosary and for these people who make us work today (everyone laughs). I ask Our lady to pray over all those in the Field. Our Lady pray over us and also pray over us in Aramaic. I don’t know for what reason She pray over us in Aramaic.”
Marija was asked how long did Our Lady pray over us in Aramaic? Marija answered a long time. She then continued:
“And after Our Lady blessed us. I ask for special blessing over this Rosary and for this Scripture, to become sign for this new family. Our Lady was tranquil. Apparition tomorrow:
“Same time, same place.”
There were many very young children and babies present in this apparition because of the many young families who came to the apparition joining with the young families of the Caritas community. This also added to the joy of the occasion.
More of What Happened on Other Days: