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November 7, 2011 A.D.
 

Bread, the very basics of foods, yet to deny oneself and eat only bread is a very trying and challenging thing to do. In our modern culture, it is easy to think of the great sacrifice that eating only bread is, yet for centuries, bread was the only thing most had to live on. Here is one feedback we received today, Nov. 7 from someone joining the Medjugorje fast from the Philippines:


It is Nov 7 here in the Philippines and I am still holding on the 9 day fast, though I must admit it is very, very difficult since I am not used to this and this is the first time I am doing it. But I do now understand how it is to be able to deny one's body and offer everything to God. Somehow it is God's grace that is pulling me through to hopefully complete it. Please do pray for me as well. Thank you.

E.B.
Pasig City - Philippines


The Community of Caritas, following the witness of our founder, A Friend of Medjugorje has incorporated Our Lady’s call for fasting into our way of life based on the four basic messages of Medjugorje: peace, prayer, fasting, and penance. Our Lady said that all the other messages come from these four.


From 'A Way' In a New Time, Community of Caritas Way of Life by A Friend of Medjugorje we read:

“We fast on bread and water twice a week on Wednesdays and Fridays, as well as other designated days throughout the year. We begin teaching and training our children at a young age to incorporate sacrifice into their lives. This is not done through pressure or force, but largely through our own witness of offering sacrifices often and with joy…”


Our children join the fast with us for all or part of the 9-day fasts that we do. It brings them the joy of accomplishment and helps them begin their spiritual journey.


Through a talk, A Friend of Medjugorje also brings to light an irrefutable point:


“A major point to be made, that many would not expect children to fast, is the fact that Our Lady's visionaries of Medjugorje include one who was only 10 years old. And all six visionaries were called upon to fast on bread and water. Many would think it too hard, even cruel for a mother to expect such fasting from a 10 year old child. But not this Queen Mother, a mother who knows what is best for Her children, even little children.”

 

Dani Kruhna, Day of Bread 2011

A day that is traditionally known as Dani Kruha or Day of Bread, the above picture was taken recently October 14, 2011 in Medjugorje. The donations collected traditionally will go toward the poor, or for the local school. A Friend of Medjugorje has always felt that a fostering of a 'love for bread,' results in a love for fasting, and a love for God. The Community of Caritas teaches this in our 'Way of Life.' The picture above is an example of incorporating fasting into your way of life, by teaching and fostering a love for bread, which transforms into a love for fasting, and a love for God. By remembering our dependence on Him, we offer sacrifices knowing that all is sustained through His grace.

 

This morning, November 7, 2011, the Community of Caritas in their morning prayer picked this message of Our Lady randomly from Words from Heaven:

 

September 16, 1986:

"Dear children, today again I thank you for all that you have accomplished for me in these days. Especially, dear children, I thank you in the name of Jesus for the sacrifices which you offered during this past week. Dear children, you are forgetting that I desire sacrifices from you so I can help you and to drive satan away from you. Therefore, I am calling you again to offer sacrifices with a special reverence toward God. Thank you for having responded to my call."

 

A Friend of Medjugorje's grandchildren helping to make bread

Bread making is a special event in the Community. In the picture above, the grandchildren of the founder are helping their grandmother to make bread, a recipe that was brought by the founder's ancestors from Italy, over 100 years ago. The founder, A Friend of Medjugorje, coming from a strong Catholic family, had the example of his mother making bread every Friday for the parish priest. This bread recipe makes 20 loaves. While that may seem like a lot of bread, this is the second batch being made during the 9-day fast. As a love for bread is fostered in this culture of the 'way of life,' this is being passed down from one generation to another, as the founder's children learned to make bread at the side of their mother, now the founder's children's children learn at the side of their parents and grandparents.

In the below picture, while the bread dough is being stirred, yeast is being poured in. Bread like this is an all day event, from kneading periodically, rising, to baking and eating. What does the bread taste like? It tastes like love.


A Friend of Medjugorje's grandchildren helping to make bread 2

 

In answer to most of the requests, we do intend to publish in the future some more information on fasting, as well as bread recipes. For more information on fasting you can download the Fasting booklet free by clicking here.

Amor Tenerowicz
South San Francisco, USA
I have seen the invitation for the 9 day fast earlier but did not commit myself. I was interesting that somehow after going to morning Mass on Nov.1, it came back from my memory that Nov.1 is the beginning of the fast. It prompted me to call Caritas to join and get my date for 2013. My husband at first said he does not want me to do this. But later on was very supportive and asking me how I am feeling during the fast. He didn't mind fending for himself on some days, since he knew that my exposure to food will make it difficult. It was such a heart warming feeling that my husband showed his support although he did not fast on bread and water , in some degree he did some form of fasting because he cooked scrambled eggs for a couple of nights for himself. Thank you Caritas for proclaiming a fast. Thank you Mama Mary for sustaining us for this 9 day fast. To my amazement it was not too too difficult.
Sriyani
Colombo, Sri Lanka
I have joined the bread and water fast with you all from November 1st to 9th. Today 9th, and the time is in our country Sri Lanka is 9.30 p.m. Today I am concluding the great sacrifice with you all. It is a great opportunity to meet you all and learn about your faith and precious culture and ways.Thank you very much the living Apostles of our Lord. The friends of Caritas gave me the date as 15th May 2012. I felt a great change in me and I have prayed faithfully. My family also helped me but they did not join. I am sure they were astonished and respecting this. Thank you Mother Mary, for leading entire world with the saintly people in Medjugorje. This is a meditation and a path to Heaven. Thanks and May God Bless You All!
Donna
Paramus, New Jersey - USA
When I heard first read about this fast in October, I was unsure whether or not I would be able to do it. I printed out the information from your website and kept reading it from time to time. Before this fast, I would fast every Friday by skipping breakfast and lunch and eat dinner only. I am very happy that I agreed to participate in this fast. I feel wonderful and closer to Our Lady and to Jesus. Thanks to Our Lady! My husband and 2 sons are not fasting and I still cook for them. It's been difficult smelling all the food and coffee. Saturday was especially hard because my husband and I attended a formal event where there was so much delicious food and my favorite wine. But I kept telling myself that I was fasting for Our Lady's intentions. My son told me he was amazed at how much willpower I have.
LD
Melbourne, Florida - USA
I called on 10/31 to ask about a date for this fasting novena. On this day I had just found out I was pregnant with my 7th child and was asking about what the expecting community members do with regards to fasting. As I was not able to receive a date because I couldn't fast on bread and water, I decided to offer my sacrifices and pray with the community anyway. By Saturday morning, it became apparent that the pregnancy would not continue. Saddened at the loss, I am offering it in replacement for not being able to participate in the fast. However, it is some consolation that there is another soul in Heaven praying with our Blessed Mother. Love you all! ALL FOR!
Margie Mulvihill
Pearl River, Ny, USA
My husband and I are still on the nine day bread and water fast much to our own surprise. It is a blessing as we are used to eating out often and the best of food at home as well. I didn't even think I could give up the couple of glasses of wine I consume in the evening with dinner and without the help of Our Mother it would not have been possible to do this. My husband is a trooper despite the many food jokes I could do without. We even survived a couple of social events we were involved in over the weekend. One day while having an argument with myself on "whether God would really want this any more than I'd want to ask it of my children" I was vacuuming and came across a small bead with a picture of Our Lady on it on the floor, it must have came off a bracelet I had but the little miracle of finding it at that time of doubt was so comforting. It's our first fast in a very long time and we just want to say thank you for bringing us closer to home-God's Blessings to you all
Nicole Pagnard
Lincoln, Nebraska - USA
Kathy, has a very good question. How does obedience to your husband work? My husband becomes very angry at the thought of it and he has not yet come to fully embrace God. I want to be obedient, but yet my heart longs to give this sacrifice and I find myself hiding it from him. Every day tips are helpful too, are there certain types of bread or will any kind work? Thank you, as always, for your guidance!
Tracy
Hamilton, Canada
I have also been fasting with the community and offering prayers and sacrifices and going to daily Mass. I have not been fasting only on bread and water but on a little bread and very little bland food and water. I hope to one day fast only on bread and water and would love the recipe the community uses. I have felt much closer to God and increasingly thankful for so many blessings. Also it has been much easier to pray when the body is not busy digesting so much food. Indeed, this is such a blessing. Thank you Caritas for trusting Our Lady and living Her messages. Thank you also for the lovely photos.
Kathy
Colorado, USA
Please consider adding a fasting section to your website, especially for us who've not made bread before (traditional and machine recipes). Also, any tips on how you fast (how much/when/how to deal with boredom, etc.) Our Lady gives us great freedom and doesn't force us to fast, even though she requests it, but I'd think a lot of mej.com viewers wonder just how Caritas members fast, especially for 9 days straight! How do we deal with family members who don't fast, for example, a wife who wants to but the husband doesn't want her to? How does obedience work in this situation? Thanks.
Brigitte
Dixon, California - USA
Bread is so good. I've been wanting to bake bread during this fast and bought some yeast just today. Now if only I had a good recipe...Thank you for inspiring us with just the right words to stay focused, and the pictures are lovely as always.
Maria Rogers
Chickasha, USA
Thank you for the encouraging words. I would like to know what kinds of breads are selected. I am new to this. Also would like some of the communities recipes.
Dee Dee Juster
Chattanooga, Tennessee - USA
Dearest Caritas: Well (my husband) is fasting with me these 9 days. He loves it for 2 reasons: 1) he doesn't have to cook and 2) he loves bread. I keep telling him fasting is a sacrifice and he keeps saying he can't wait for the 9 day fast so he can enjoy himself. I wonder when his conversion finally takes place how fasting will be a sacrifice for 'him' when he loves doing it so much?
Ann
Lake Mary, Florida - USA
Can you share your recipe?