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Header-Mary Frees a Woman From the Devil’s Power

 

In the marvelous book, City of God, in which Maria of Agreda, a nun and mystic, writes the life of the Blessed Mother, as shown her in visions, she relates wonderful details.

 

When the Angel Gabriel announced to Mary that she was to conceive a Son by the power of the Holy Ghost, he also spoke of her barren cousin’s miraculous pregnancy.

Without revealing to St. Joseph her own state, the Blessed Lady told her holy spouse what she had learned of Elizabeth, and of God’s will that they visit her and her husband Zachariah.

The AnnunciationPromptly harnessing their donkey, Saint Joseph helped his bride on, and taking the reins, set out on the ninety-mile trip. Unbeknownst to the holy man, Mary was already the temple of God-made-man, then only a four-day-old resplendent little fetus in her virginal womb, now the living Ark of the Covenant.

When Mary met her cousin in the latter’s home, Elizabeth understood the full reality of the Virgin’s divine pregnancy and broke out into her famous song, “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb! And whence is this to me that the mother of my Lord should come to me?” (Luke 1:42)

At the same time, the little God-made-man stood up within Mary’s cloister, and sanctified Elizabeth’s six-month-unborn son, the future John the Baptist, by cleansing him of Original Sin, at which His baby cousin leapt for joy.

We also know that the Holy Virgin Mary went on to spend three months at her cousins’ home.

 

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The Blessed Lady and the Bad-Tempered Woman

The Visitation A beautiful detail Venerable Maria of Agreda tells us of this visit is that wherever Mary went, her burning charity made her ever so attentive to the needs of those around her.

Zachariah and Elizabeth being wealthy and noble, had a large household and several servants. One such, was a woman whose many sins had allowed the devil sway over her, so that her attitude was spiteful restless and angry, and was much given to swearing and cursing. Still she knew how to make herself agreeable to her employers. For fourteen years many devils surrounded her, making sure of their prey, and rendering her life miserable.

But when this woman came into the presence of Holy Mary, the devils took flight not able to bear the virtue emanating from the Immaculate Virgin and the “Presence” she carried within her.

Freed from the constant, nefarious influence of her demons, the poor woman felt lighter and brighter around the holy maiden, and began to feel a great attraction to her company, offering to serve her with affection and respect, for, despite her many vices, she enjoyed helping those in need.

Mary Most Holy was aware of the state of the woman’s soul, and the danger it ran in the grip of demons. So the sweet queen turned an eye of mercy on her, interceded with the God she carried in her womb, and obtained for her pardon, remedy and salvation.

In virtue of the authority granted her, Most Holy Mary commanded the demons to leave the creature alone and never to disturb her again. Though the fiends did not understand whence her power, they could not resist her and fled in confusion.

Thus, the happy woman was snatched from Satan’s claws. Gently admonishing the poor soul and teaching her the way of salvation, the Blessed Lady changed her into a person of meek and amiable disposition, in which the woman persevered to the end of her life, always grateful and aware to whom she owed so great a favor.

 


 By Andrea F. Phillips

 

 

 

 

Quote of the day

DAILY QUOTE for September 23, 2019

In all the events of life, you must recognize the Divine wil...

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September 23

 

In all the events of life, you must recognize the Divine will.
Adore and bless it,
especially in the things which are the hardest for you.

St. Padre Pio of Pietrelcina


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Saint of the day

SAINT OF THE DAY

St. Pio of Pietrelcina

Offering himself as a victim for the end of the war, Padre P...

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St. Pio of Pietrelcina

Francesco was born in the small Italian village of Pietrelcina on May 25, 1887. His parents, Grazio Forgione and Maria Giuseppa Di Nunzio, were peasant farmers, but they recognized their son was close to God. When he was only five years old, he solemnly consecrated himself to Jesus. It is said he often spoke with Our Lord, Our Lady and his guardian angel, who defended him against attacks by the devil. He joined the Capuchin Franciscans at the age of fifteen, and took the name Pio with his religious vows. After seven years of study he was ordained to the priesthood in 1910.

During the same month he was ordained, Padre Pio was praying in the chapel when Our Lord and His Blessed Mother appeared and gave him the Stigmata. However, the wounds soon faded and then disappeared. “I do want to suffer, even to die of suffering,” Padre Pio told Our Lady, “but all in secret." Soon after, he experienced the first of his spiritual ecstasies.

Pio was in the military for a short time, but was discharged due to poor health. Upon his return to the monastery, he became a spiritual director. He had five rules for spiritual growth: weekly confession, daily Communion, spiritual reading, meditation, and examination of conscience. He often advised, "Pray, Hope and Don’t Worry."

In July of 1918, Padre Pio received the visible Stigmata, the five wounds of Christ (hands, feet and side), after offering himself as a victim for the end of the war. By 1933, the holy priest was recognized by the Church and by 1934 had attracted thousands of pilgrims that attended his masses and frequented his confessional.

On September 23, 1968, Padre Pio said his final Mass, renewed his vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience and died in his cell after suffering from grave physical decline. Before his death, Padre Pio orchestrated and oversaw the building of the “House for the Alleviation of Suffering,” a 350-bed medical and religious center.

He was canonized on June 16, 2002 by Pope John Paul II. An estimated 300,000 people attended the canonization ceremony.

Weekly Story

WEEKLY STORY

“What is that?” Asked a curious voice as America Needs F...

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The Power of a Picture

“What is that?” Asked a curious voice as America Needs Fatima custodian Jose Ferraz stepped into the hotel elevator in Altamonte Springs, Florida. “This is the Pilgrim statue of Our Lady of Fatima,” replied Mr. Ferraz, “I take Her to visit people in their homes to spread the Fatima message.” He then handed the woman, who was a maid at the hotel, America Needs Fatima’s most popular picture. “This is a picture of Her.” The woman gasped. “I know that picture! It inspired a conversion.” She then asked excitedly, “Do you have a minute to hear the story?” 

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As Mr. Ferraz listened, he learned that the woman, Maria Vegra, had a 22-year old son who had recently passed away after three weeks in the hospital due to a fatal injury received in a car accident. While in the hospital, a priest would visit him every day to administer Holy Communion. The priest consistently offered the sacrament to the neighboring patient of Maria’s son, another young man who was also in critical condition. The young man would say, “No. I don’t believe in God.” But the priest continued to offer salvation. “Let me hear your confession and give you Holy Communion and Last Rights,” the priest said, “it will save your soul and get you to heaven.” Time after time, the young man stubbornly refused.

During the weeks of hospitalization and fruitless medical treatments, Maria had taken her son a picture of Our Lady of Fatima a friend had given her from an America Needs Fatima mailing.

She knew Our Lady’s watchful gaze would give her son peace in his last days. The day after she placed Our Lady’s picture at the foot of her son’s bed, she heard the voice of his stubborn neighbor: “please,” he said, “bring the picture closer to me. I want to look at the Lady.” 

Surprised but willing, Maria placed the picture in the middle of the two suffering men. 

After three days of letting the nearby picture of Our Lady touch his heart as he gazed into Her eyes, the suffering patient relented. “Please,” he called out, “bring me the priest. I want to receive the sacraments.”

A few days later, the young man died a Catholic. With a simple picture of Our Lady of Fatima, God touched a heart and saved a soul. 

 By Catherine Ferdinand

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“What is that?” Asked a curious voice as America Needs Fatima custodian Jose Ferraz stepped into the hotel elevator in Altamonte Springs, Florida. “This is the Pilgrim statue of Our Lady of Fatima,” replied Mr. Ferraz, “I take Her to visit people in their homes to spread the Fatima message.” He then handed the woman, who was a maid at the hotel, America Needs Fatima’s most popular picture. 

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