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The reflection of Medjugorje Message, October 25, 1996
Medjugorje Message, October 25, 1996
“Dear children! Today I invite you to open yourselves to God the Creator, so that He changes you. Little children, you are dear to me. I love you all and I call you to be closer to me and that your love towards my Immaculate Heart be more fervent. I wish to renew you and lead you with my Heart to the Heart of Jesus, which still today suffers for you and calls you to conversion and renewal. Through you, I wish to renew the world. Comprehend, little children, that you are today the salt of the earth and the light of the world. Little children, I invite you and I love you and in a special way implore: Convert!" Thank you for having responded to my call. ”
Peace be with you all who with love accept the messages of the Mother of God. Before I say anything about this month's message I again would like to remind everyone of our last message, that of September '96. There, Mary taught us to have a new relationship with the cross. She called upon us to offer up our crosses and sufferings for her intentions and, in so doing, also offering them to the Father. I hope that we lived with this message for the entire month. It is very important how we stand in relationship toward the cross. Jesus said that if someone wishes to be His disciple that he must take up his cross and to follow Him. I hope that I do no-one injustice when I say that many of our prayers are founded upon this sentence: "Lord, when You have removed my cross, then I will become Your disciple." It happens with so many Christians that they never become real disciples of Jesus because they remain unwilling to carry their own cross. Mary, in one message, asked of us to pray that we can carry our crosses as her Son Jesus carried His -- with patience and love. When we think about the cross we most often think about the physical cross, about suffering and illness; yet we must not forget that the most difficult cross is to forgive and to love. When we take this cross upon ourselves then everything will turn out for the good, but when we do not wish to take this cross upon ourselves then we are responsible for preparing many other crosses and sufferings for ourselves as well as for others. This is why I want to remind everyone not to forget to pray that we may all become able to carry this cross in order to be real disciples of the Lord. So, I really want all our crosses and sufferings to turn toward the good, and thus for our joy and that our crosses can thereby become the path to our joy. Here one could ask many questions, but one thing is certain; and that is that we should start to pray -- pray, as Mary asked of us, to be able to understand that suffering can become the path to joy.
This month Vicka, Marija and Jacov are here in Medjugorje. Marija has stayed here for the entire month and she was also here for the message. Jacov's family and his second child, a son, are here and doing well. The baby was baptized in October. Mirjana and Ivanka are also here in Medjugorje. These four -- Marija, Jacov, Vicka and Mirjana -- see pilgrims every day and speak with them. Ivan is still in the U.S. and only in March will he be returning here with his family. In this time we have had many pilgrims in Medjugorje from all over the world. At the moment we have a large group from Romania here with at least ten Priests. Then we have many Germans, Austrians, Italians and many French as well as English speaking pilgrims. There are also many here from Poland, the Czech and Slovak Republics. Lately we have also had two groups of Indians from Canada and Brazil, and during the week of October 17 to 24 we also had with us Monsignor Jean-Baptiste Odama from the new Diocese of Nebbi in Uganda. We have a great number of Priests here right now where every evening there are around 40 concelebrants at Holy Mass. Medjugorje is certainly alive!
In this message Mary again spoke to us in very simple and motherly way. The first thing to which she calls us is...
TO OPEN YOURSELVES TO GOD THE CREATOR, SO THAT HE CHANGES YOU
Certainly the first condition so that God can do something in our hearts is that we open ourselves to Him. This is why when someone asks himself how he is to open himself to the Lord, the answer is very simple. When we hear the message we must first start by praying to the Holy Spirit that He begin opening our hearts. Mary's heart was open at the moment of the Annunciation. Her answer, "Lord, Thy will be done", is proof that her heart was open to God the Creator. The condition for her being open to God was not being able to understand things, but rather was her faith in the power of God. This is also the way for us to begin and most probably the only way. Thus to have the faith and the trust to say that for God everything is possible, and then to say, "Lord, Thy will be done. Speak, Oh Lord, Your servant listens." Only when Gods' words enter into our hearts can the good start happening, but already opening to Him is, in itself, a change. A very useful question for us all is to ask what it is that closes our hearts from His love, His words and His graces. Usually it is our fears, the lack of faith, the lack of trust, the lack of love or, on the other hand, our dependencies, dependencies upon something in this world that hinder us, and then our hearts are there where are treasure is, rather than with God. Our change can occur only there where we permit God to say something to us and God has something to say to everyone of us. We change when we overcome our hate, our fears, our distrust and all our other negative feelings, and then open ourselves to love, to forgiveness, to faith and to hope. But to do this we really always need the help of the Holy Spirit. Then Mary continues by helping us in again showing us how to open ourselves to her...
LITTLE CHILDREN, YOU ARE DEAR TO ME. I LOVE YOU ALL
This is because when someone tells us that we are dear to them and that they love us, that they like us, then we become more open to them, we are healed of distrust and fear, and our hearts begin to open themselves. We cannot open our hearts to those who criticize us, who push us away and who consider us negatively. This is why it is so important for us to hear that we are dear to her and that she loves us. And only one for whom we are important can also invite us to hear what he wishes to say. The conditions for being able to listen are really a free heart, a heart that is in peace and a heart that loves. People whom we do not love, we cannot hear and thereby also not follow or obey. This is why it is so important to know that Mary as mother loves each one of us and that she calls us as much as we also give her the right to call upon us. Mary wants us...
TO BE CLOSER TO ME
The presence of a loving person is an absolute necessity for the human being. Man cannot exist far away from the love of others. For man sin creates a distance from God as well as from other people. Already with the very first sin, this happened. Adam could no longer tolerate God's presence, became fearful of his protector, and therefore Adam had to hide himself. And he admitted it before God when he said, "I was afraid of You. I was afraid when I heard Your steps." Mary is the woman, the new Eve, who had no fear of God, who did not need to hide herself, but rather stood before God and expressed her 'yes'. As she, being the mother of the Savior, is really near us, she also wants us to come closer to her. Spoken in human terms, the mother is always close to her children, but the children are not always to their mother. Our becoming closer to her is what she wants to accomplish with us. We come closer to her especially when we pray the Rosary because we are, in those moments, with her in joy, in sorrow and in glory. She then wants...
YOUR LOVE TOWARDS MY IMMACULATE HEART BE MORE FERVENT
Here we can think of St. Francis who cried and then said, "Love is not loved." Mary loves us with her heart and naturally also wants us to respond to it with love. In her prayer-group, Jelena once said to Mary, "Mother, do not leave us!" and Mary responded to this with, "I beg you, do not leave me!" It is true that it would be better to pray, "Lord, give us the grace that we may remain with You and with Mary, that we do not distance ourselves from You and that we become more fervent in prayer", than it would be to pray, "God stay close to me, Mary stay close to me." The problem of God's and Mary's being distant from us does not exist, while our lack of closeness to them certainly does! And so we must, at least in prayer, make an effort to come closer to her heart that loves us so urgently with a motherly love, and to love it more fervently. Then she again speaks about the very first call she gave us here with her apparitions...
I WISH TO RENEW YOU
This she has done and, as a mother, continues doing in having called us to prayer, to Mass, to Confession, to fasting, to reading Holy Scripture, and in that she so often has spoken about love and peace. With all this, she has renewed us and continues to do so in renewing good relationships toward ourselves, toward others, toward nature and also toward God. She, of course, wishes for us to become new people in responding to her, just as she too, in special way, became a new person. The renewed person, as she also did, will say to the Lord, "Speak Lord, your servant listens. Thy will be done." The old person, the one who is not renewed, is disobedient and cannot say, "Lord, Thy will be done", but rather seeks only his own will. Only through our own and others' renewal, can peace then finally be accomplished! Mary offers herself as mediatrice, and if we come closer to her heart and then love it more fervently, then we do not only stop with her, but with her we will take the path to come closer to the heart of Jesus. This pierced heart has brought us enough proofs that it loves us immeasurably! Only in His heart can we find peace because Jesus Himself said, "I am humble and of humble heart." Everyone of us needs this type of heart! Only along with Mary's and Jesus' hearts can we grow as we should grow. Mary spoke also about her Son's heart to which she wishes to...
LEAD YOU WITH MY HEART TO THE HEART OF JESUS, WHICH STILL SUFFERS FOR YOU
The only love in which we are ready to believe is that love which is ready to suffer for us. How often have we experienced with others, and certainly also the others with us, that in good days we were friends with others and the others with us, but that we often left the others, and the others us, when suffering came along. We are often not prepared to suffer for others. Jesus stays loyal toward His assignment that He received from His Father. Through His cross and sufferings He saved us, and because He loves us He still also suffers for us. This suffering, when we understand that it is for us, will give us new impulses to conversion and renewal. This is why Mary tells us that His suffering calls us...
TO CONVERSION AND RENEWAL
It is normal that we only respond to those who give us their trust and who love us. We also will only become ready to convert when we believe in the love of God. For whoever has fear of God cannot convert, because conversion really means going toward and then meeting with God. It is also this way between us. When we are afraid of someone, we are unable to go toward him, yet when we are freed of this fear and open again for faith and trust, then we are again able to meet with him. So the conditions for our conversion and our renewal will become our love for the Heart of Jesus. The heart is the symbol of love itself, and exactly the lack of hearts is the main problem in the world today. It always becomes rarer and rarer that we meet others with our hearts; and when we wish to say everything good about another in one sentence, then we say that he or she is a person with a heart. But when we want to say everything bad about someone in one sentence, we negate everything by saying he or she is someone without a heart. Our God has a heart for us and this is a call for us also to have hearts for others. To come closer to Mary's Immaculate Heart means to be on the path toward the Heart of Jesus that loves us. This is the condition that we then also renew the world. Mary's and Jesus' hearts are also examples for us, and when we come closer to them we know exactly what it means to become new people -- people with hearts such as Mary and Jesus. Only such people can renew the world, because Mary's intention is...
THROUGH YOU, I WISH TO RENEW THE WORLD
...for when we are renewed, we then renew the world. This world badly needs a renewal. How many people today only live superficially? They live so superficially that often one complains that true friends no longer exist, and this is always more violence between people, always more young people in drugs and alcoholism, and the number of suicides grow from day to day. All this shows us clearly how badly the world is falling apart, and to renew the world means to encourage everyone whom one meets to burn for love, for God, for faith and for hope. When we think generally then it seems impossible, yet when one thinks specifically, as Mary does, it becomes clear that renewal begins within our hearts. How much I am renewed is how much the world will be renewed. Mary reminds us of what Jesus tells us in the Gospel, and...
THAT YOU ARE TODAY THE SALT OF THE EARTH AND THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
We also know other words of Jesus, but when the salt is no longer worth anything, with what then shall one salt anything? And it is a great intention of Mary's for us to become the salt and the light of the world. (Mt 5:13-16) She asks of us a radical decision against evil as well as a radical decision for the good. We can also think this way. For instance when parents live love and hate, prayer and lack of prayer, trust and distrust, mercy and mercilessness, then their children will also become confused and one does not show them the right way. In this manner we must really become the salt and the light for our children. In order to put out light we must truly decide for God who in turn wishes to light the way for us through this life, and who really wishes to give us the true content of the whole world. At the end of the message Mary tells us that...
I INVITE YOU AND LOVE YOU, AND IN A SPECIAL WAY IMPLORE: CONVERT!
In so many of Jesus' talks that we find in the Gospel He says, "Convert. If you do not convert, you will be destroyed, you will die." (Lk 13:1-9) Conversion is the condition for life. It means to free oneself of evil in the name of God. To decide for the good and to take the path with Mary means to live. Conversion means to turn away from sin, from evil, from the world and from darkness, and to turn toward life, to light, toward love and toward joy. We need conversion, God does not! When we convert we really begin to live, and if we do not we will destroy ourselves. In this message Mary is also preparing us for the end of the liturgical year and the beginning of the next liturgical year which in turn is the preparation for the Christmas Feast.
Let us pray...
God, the Father and Creator of the world, my Creator, thank You for creating me, the others around me and the entire world. Thank You for creating my heart and that You call me through Mary to open my heart to You and that You can change me. I do not know how to open my heart and I do not understand what I am supposed to find there, but I, along with Mary, ask You to open my heart and to free it of everything that closes me from You, and change me, Oh Father! Help me change my relationships toward myself, toward the others and toward You. Give me the grace through Mary that I can come closer to You. Give me the grace that I can love her Immaculate Heart more fervently and that I thereby can discover the heart of Your Son, Jesus. Give me the grace to understand what it means that the heart of Your Son, Oh Father, still suffers for me today and thereby calls me to convert and to renewal. I beg You, Oh Father, renew me and, through me, renew the world. Give me the grace that I can become available for others and that I become an instrument for renewal. Give me, all Christians and all the Baptized the grace of becoming the salt and the light for the world. Free me and all others of any darkness, and of anything that leads us to destruction. Give us the grace of conversion, that we can live our conversion and praise You through Your Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Fra Slavko , Medjugorje October 28, 1996
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