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Posted on 12/9/2018 05:14 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 12/9/2018 04:17 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Posted on 12/8/2018 15:51 PM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
“About forty local people joined us at Gumno. Crickets chirped loudly and mosquitos flitted around our faces as we kneeled in the red clay. We prayed and waited, and suddenly Our Lady appeared in front of us.
Some of the people had asked us if they could touch Our Lady, and when we presented their request, she said that whoever wanted to could approach her. One by one, we took their hands and guided them to touch Our Lady’s dress. The experience was strange for us visionaries—it was difficult to comprehend that only we could see Our Lady.
From our perspective, guiding people to touch her was like leading the blind. Their reactions were lovely, especially the children. It seemed that most felt something. A few reported a sensation like “electricity” and others were overcome with emotion. But as more people touched Our Lady, I noticed black spots forming on her dress, and the spots congealed into a large, coal-colored stain. I cried at the sight of it.
“Her dress!” yelled Marija, also crying. The stains, said Our Lady, represented sins that had never been confessed. She suddenly vanished.
After praying for a while, we stood in the darkness and told the people what we saw. They were nearly as upset as we were. Someone suggested that everyone there should go to confession, and the next day repentant villagers inundated the priests.
My cousin, Vlado, just a little boy, was among those who touched Our Lady’s dress. When I told him about the stains, he exclaimed, “But I washed my hands, Mirjana! They were clean! I promise!” Anytime I saw him after that, I smiled and said, “Have you washed your hands lately, Vlado?”
During these daily encounters, Our Lady emphasized things like prayer, fasting, confession, reading the Bible and going to Mass. Later, people identified these as Our Lady’s “main messages”—or, as Fr. Jozo called them, her “five stones,” an allusion to the story of David and Goliath.
She was not asking us to pray or fast just for the sake of it. The fruit of living our faith, she said, was love. As she said in one of her messages, “I come to you as a mother, who, above all, loves her children. My children, I want to teach you to love.”
Our Lady’s ethereal beauty captivated us from the very beginning. One day during an apparition, we asked a childish question. “How is it possible that you are so beautiful?” Our Lady gently smiled. “I am beautiful because I love,” she said. “If you want to be beautiful, then love.”
Posted on 12/2/2018 03:16 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
Advent looks forward to God bringing about change in our lives and in our world. Are we going to welcome this change in our lives or will we resist? During this season, we need to ponder whether we are striving to travel light during our short earthly life. Will we be like those passengers stuck holding their earthly baggage, unable to check-in our anxieties and earthly securities? Or will we have the confidence in God to let go of our selfish desires by opening ourselves to God in prayer, fasting from our insatiable appetite to accumulate, and giving generously to the poor? What are some of the excess things in our home that we can bring to our thrift store? Can we shave a few minutes of sitting in front of TV or our phones and spend instead in front of the Blessed Sacrament in our adoration chapel? Instead of brooding over grievances against our family or friends, can we surrender those burdens to a priest at penance service or confession? Just as the pilot of our airplane waited patiently, Our Lord waits for us to surrender to his will to take us to our next destination.
Posted on 11/19/2018 03:13 AM (Homilies of Father Paul Yi)
With our lives being so busy and preoccupied with things of this world, we need to be reminded of the scripture verses, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. And love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mk 12:29-31) A good question to ask ourselves is, ‘Have we shown gratitude to the Heavenly Father for all that we have received’? The Eucharist is also known as ‘thanksgiving.’ Have we in the past found time to go hunting, shopping, or recreation but complained that we don’t have time to give thanks to God in the Holy Eucharist? We may choose other priorities over Holy Mass, so we use the excuse that the priest is boring, the music is unexciting, and time is inconvenient to not attend. But the sacrifice of the Mass is not about our convenience, entertainment, or what’s in it for us; it’s all about giving God our heartfelt thanksgiving.