What happened on July 23, 2005?
The apparition was in the Bedroom at 6:40 p.m. The whole community was present. The founder of Caritas, again, in a long prayer before the Rosary began asked Our Lady for great conversions to take place during the Five Days of Prayer. He then encouraged the community, once again, that during the apparition we each, in the silence of our hearts, ask Our Lady to take possession of us, that we may belong completely to Her. In the apparition, Our Lady blessed us and prayed over us.
In the apparition today, Marija’s three-year-old son, Giovanni was fussing a little. When the 8-year-old daughter of our founder tried to take him out of the room since it was exactly at apparition time, he grabbed hold of Marija’s arm trying to stay. Marija was oblivious to all this, even though her body was being pulled in two different directions at the time. It was an amazing scene to watch, with Marija in ecstasy. After the apparition ended, our founder explained to Marija what had been happening while she was seeing Our Lady. She smiled shaking her head at her young son as she listened to the story.
What happened on July 24, 2005?
These days, Our Lady’s apparitions took on a similar daily routine normal to Medjugorje visionary Marija’s everyday life. Our Lady came at a regularly set time that She chose, and always blessed and prayed over everyone present. The apparition of July 24, 2005 took place in the Bedroom, in the evening at 6:40 p.m.
Every morning in the Field at Caritas where Our Lady has appeared to Marija more than 30 times over the years (in the Field), the Rosary is prayed when the whole Community is gathered together. This time corresponds with the Rosary being said in Medjugorje leading up to the evening apparition time of the Medjugorje visionaries. In Medjugorje, during the summer, the time is 6:40 p.m., which is 11:40 a.m., Alabama time. Marija, of course, is not here except when she is attending a special prayer retreat at Caritas. However, our community always honors this time of Our Lady’s apparition all year round. When in Medjugorje, Marija's daily apparitions are held primarily in her private chapel next to her home, Ivan's take place in his private chapel and on Apparition Mountain, and Vicka's take place in her home. With the other visionaries, Mirjana's apparitions on the second of the month take place at the Blue Cross on Apparition Mountian, and Ivanka's and Jakov's take place in their private homes.
At the moment of the time of apparition in Medjugorje, there is silent prayer in the Field, here at Caritas, where everyone offers their heart and private intentions to Our Lady. At that time, the children of the community go before Our Lady’s statue in the Field and honor this time as well. Even the little babies are brought up at that time. From the beginning of their lives they are taught to acknowledge this special moment in the day when Our Lady comes down to visit the Earth, to pray over us and to bless us that we might have the strength to live what She is telling us in Her messages.
Since September, 1989, a prayer has been prayed in the Field consecrating the land, the mountains, even the trees and animals to Our Lady. This prayer was written by our founder in 1989. He had always prayed for this valley to be used for God’s purposes since the time he and his wife first purchased this land in 1977, and then, especially when they began to build their home in 1981—the same year Our Lady began appearing in Medjugorje. We have experienced the power of consecrations through the years, and in a particular way, have seen how God uses even the wild forest animals, consecrated to Him in this prayer each day, to bring conversion to people’s hearts—even our own.
The deer in the pictures was separated from its mother in the first days of its life. It was raised from a bottle in our founder’s home and at a young age began to come to the Field at Rosary time. Once grown, she was free to come and go—but at the sound of the Rosary bells, she always came bounding into the Field, happy to be reunited to her dog friend, Rebel, and all the community. There were times that she came to the Field panting heavily and we realized she had heard the bells from a far off distance, and ran from a long ways to come to the Field where she knew everyone was gathering.
It was always a beautiful scene for the community to see our deer running side by side Rebel, making us think of the Scripture passage, “The lion will lie down with the lamb.”
Marija with her son, Giovanni.
After the apparition in the Bedroom, June 24, 2005, Marija, seen at the bottom right corner, tells stories to the community as they gather in the living room.