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Rosary Graces & Miracles
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The reason for this page is that I know first hand the power of the prayers said upon these simple beads, and I want to share this treasure from heaven with you.
MAY GOD BLESS YOU ABUNDANTLY, MAY MOTHER MARY ASK HER SON JESUS TO SHOWER YOU WITH HIS GRACES
Please feel free to pass these stories on especially to all those in despair so that they might know that they are not alone in their hour of need.
Promises of Our Lady, the Blessed Virgin Mary, to those who recite the Rosary
1. Whoever shall faithfully serve me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall receive signal graces.
2. I promise My special protection and the greatest graces to all those who shall recite the Rosary.
3. The Rosary shall be a powerful armor against hell, it will destroy vice, decrease sin, and defeat heresies.
4. It will cause virtue and good works to flourish; it will obtain for souls the abundant mercy of God; it will withdraw the hearts of men from the love of the world and its vanities, and will lift them to the desire of eternal things. Oh, that souls would sanctify themselves by this means.
5. The soul which recommends itself to Me by the recitation of the Rosary, shall not perish.
6. Whoever shall recite the Rosary devoutly, applying himself to the consideration of its Sacred Mysteries shall never be conquered by misfortune. God will not chastise him in His justice, he shall not perish by an unprovided death; if he be just he shall remain in the grace of God, and become worthy of eternal life.
7. Whoever shall have a true devotion for the Rosary shall not die without the sacraments of the Church.
8. Those who are faithful to recite the Rosary shall have during their life and at their death the light of God and the plentitude of His graces; at the moment of death they shall participate in the merits of the Saints in Paradise.
9. I shall deliver from purgatory, those who have been devoted to the Rosary.
10. The faithful children of the Rosary shall merit a high degree of glory in Heaven.
11. You shall obtain all you ask of Me by the recitation of the Rosary.
12. All those who propagate the Holy Rosary shall be aided by Me in their necessities.
13. I have obtained from My Divine Son, that all the advocates of the Rosary shall have for intercessors, the entire Celestial Court during their life and at the hour of death.
14. All who recite the Rosary are My sons, and brothers of My only Son, Jesus Christ.
15. Devotion to My Rosary is a great sign of pre-destination.
"Say the Rosary every day, to earn peace for the world and the end of war."
-- Our Lady of Fatima, 1917 --
Financial Aid Miracle
at College !!
sent in by Mona
It was September 8, the day the church celebrates Our Lady’s birthday. I had no sooner arrived home from an out-of-town retreat when I received a phone call from my husband Tom requesting that I come down to the hospital right away. Upon arrival at the hospital, Tom broke the news to me that our son Brian was in surgery to repair damage he had done when he accidentally shot himself in the leg and severed a major artery. Tom was there when they brought him in, and his description of Brian was that he looked “ like a casualty victim from Viet Nam.” Then he handed me a bank envelope and said, “Here is Brian’s rosary. It is covered with mud and Brian wants to leave it that way.” I went to the chapel in the hospital and knelt in front of the Tabernacle and prayed countless rosaries until I thought it was time for Brian to come out of surgery. When it was time for us to see Brian, I could not believe my eyes. After Tom’s description, I expected the worst. Instead, I found Brian sitting up and talking and joking with the nurses. He even requested to watch the video “Young Guns!”
During the days that followed, Brian shared his experience with me. Brian told me that early on the morning of the 8th, he had a strange premonition that something was going to happen to him that day. Since it was a beautiful day, he decided to spend some time in the woods nearby. As he headed towards the woods though, he felt the urge to turn around and go back home to get the wooden rosary he had brought from Medjugorje last summer.
When Brian got to the woods he did some target shooting, and as he was putting his gun into his holster, his gun accidentally went off and hit him in the upper right thigh. Brian immediately blacked out, and when he came to, he could not hear or see anything for a time. When he realized what had happened, he yelled for help. He did not recall having seen anyone else in the woods that day though. Brian realized very quickly that he could not walk, so he tried to hop on his other leg. Each time he would try to stand up though, he would fall down again. Weakened from the loss of blood, he fell to the ground and began crawling on his belly It was not long before he noticed he was bleeding so profusely that his jeans looked like they could be used for a Santa Claus suit in December. They weighed him down so much from the blood and the mud he was crawling in, that he eventually removed them so he could continue to move. Brian then removed his shirt and tried to make a tourniquet with it, but it was not successful because his leg had become so swollen. Soon Brian became dehydrated, so he crawled to the mud puddles and sipped the water out of them. He said that he had to stick his lips down into the puddles because of the layers of gas and oil from the ATV’s that formed a film on top of the puddles. He said that by that point, even the stagnant mosquito-infested water in the mud puddles tasted good. During this time Brian’s hearing began to fade in and out, and his breathing became labored. As he continued to crawl from mud puddle to mud puddle, he screamed for help, but there seemed not to be another soul in the woods that day. This went on for 21/2 to 3 hours.
Before Brian discarded his jeans, he took out of the pocket his wooden rosary from Medjugorje. He wrapped it around the fingers of his left hand, and crawled to the next puddle. As he lay on his back in the puddle he relaxed and began to pray the Rosary. Brian said that before he found his rosary he was very angry, but as he began to pray the Rosary he relaxed and came to terms with the idea that he might not make it out of the woods. Dragging himself from puddle to puddle, he continued to pray the Rosary. Finally he reached what looked to be the last puddle. In front of him was a big hill. He made himself as comfortable as possible, and prepared to die. He closed his eyes as he prayed in his Rosary for God to send him an angel to rescue him, or if that was not God’s plan, then to let him die peacefully. “Hail Mary, full of grace…” Then he heard the noise of motors! With what little strength he had left after having crawled approximately 500 yards, he yelled for help. Two men on ATV’s heard his cries and came over and asked him what was wrong. By this point, he was not bleeding any more because he was virtually out of blood. He told them that he had been shot. Then they asked what was in his hand. Barely able to breathe, much less speak, he answered, “My rosary.” The men helped him onto one of the 4-wheelers for the half-hour ride to the nearest house, where they called 911.
Brian’s surgery was successful. Amazingly, the bullet had exited the leg through the back and had not done any damage to the bone, surrounding muscle or major nerve. The next day when the policeman came to the hospital, he told us how very lucky Brian was. He said that if the men on the ATV’s had not picked Brian up when they did, he would not have survived. If they had gone for help and then come back, it would have been too late. He had not much more than 20 minutes left.
When the policeman gave us the names of the men on the 4-wheelers, we called them right away to thank them. Eric Swindlehurst and Christopher Firment both humbly admitted that it was God who saved Brian, that they had just been in the right place at the right time. Both men told us that they had not been planning on going 4-wheeling that day, that it was a spur of the moment decision. They also told us that they almost never go to that part of the woods, and had not been there in months. What is even more amazing is that even with their helmets on they were able to hear Brian’s cries for help over their loud motors. And where they found Brian was the exact opposite direction of the way Brian had intended to go. Brian had been so disoriented, as he faded in and out of consciousness, that he headed the wrong direction in the woods he had been so familiar with since he was a child. Brian was also surprised that the men were able to see him at all because his whole body except for his head was immersed in the deep puddle.
Several months later, as I was telling this story, a nurse asked me how much damage Brian sustained. She was surprised when I told her that he had no damage at all. She said that because of the large loss of blood over a long period of time he should have had kidney, liver, and/or brain damage. He could have lost his leg and he could have gotten a terrible infection from the stagnant water. Other medical personnel I have spoken with agreed. Brian was back at his college classes a week and a half later and began jogging again the following month. Brian even made the Dean’s List that semester for the first time! Our Lady of Medjugorje said, “The Rosary alone can already work miracles in the world and in your lives.” (1/25/91)
There is a footnote to this story, which is just as miraculous as the story itself. The day after Brian was rescued, my husband, who is a U.S. Army Reserve Criminal Investigator, went down into the woods to follow the path where Brian crawled, and took photographs. As he was showing the photos at the hospital, someone noticed that in the mud where Brian crawled with his rosary was an image of Mary! Mary is holding a rosary. Then we noticed another image, which we later concluded was Joseph because Baby Jesus is in the manger near Mary. Several days later as I was showing someone the photo, I happened to have it turned the opposite way, and a lady noticed an image of Jesus’ Crucifixion! Coincidentally this lady’s last name is “Cross” and the day she noticed it was Sept. 14, the feast of the Exultation of the Cross!
During the weeks that followed people began asking me for copies of the miraculous photo. When I had reprints made, I accidentally checked off “ 4 x 7” instead of “4 x 6” and I was surprised to find another image which we did not see at first. Above the cross is a leaf that is shaped exactly like a dove. It took my breath away, as it occurred to me that in the mud we had images from the Joyful, Sorrowful, and Glorious Mysteries of the Rosary, and it was amazing that we found them in that same order. We saw the Holy Family first, then the Crucifixion, and then the Holy Spirit.
Two months later I was sharing this story with a group of people and a man turned the photo sideways and said, “Look at the Lamb!” The Lamb is formed from the images of Mary and Baby Jesus. I could not believe we did not see this in the first place. And what does this have to do with the Rosary? Easy – the Rosary is the story of our salvation, the story of the Gospel, the story of Jesus, the Lamb of God. The Rosary connects us to Jesus and Mary, as we meditate on the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus.
As if that were not enough, a few months later, a 16 year-old student of mine noticed what he described as an “evil face” at the foot of the cross. The young man said that his interpretation was that Jesus is crushing the devil by His death on the cross. And as we pray the Rosary we are crushing the devil also.
Coincidentally, the article about Brian’s rescue, and the disclosure that he was praying the Rosary when the men found him, appeared in our local paper on the morning of September 11, 2001. At Fatima Our Lady said, "Let the people continue to say the Rosary every day to obtain the end of the war." She wants us to pray the Rosary every day. In 1985, Our Lady said, “Tell everyone to pray it,” (3/18/85) and “ Put on the armor for battle and with the Rosary in your hands, you will conquer.” (8/8/85) Brian’s story is proof of that miracles can, indeed, be brought about by praying the Rosary.
by MaryT. Meier
A wonderful, true, story of faith and the power of Our Lady's intercession often comes to mind, which I'd like to share. A pious Catholic Mother was about to give birth to her eighth child.
Her age and general poor health contributed to the ordinary risks of pregnancy, and she developed toxemia. Her physician had grave concerns about her condition and feared the worst.
Family and friends gathered to care for the seven children waiting at home, while the father kept his solitary vigil in the hospital waiting room. In a unity of prayer, together they fervently offered Rosary after Rosary, pleading that both mother and child would survive the difficult birth.
The father agonized, waiting through the seemingly endless hours of his wife's labor. He was startled from his prayer by a sudden commotion. The doctor, a devout Jew, hurried past him down the hall to the delivery room and called out, "Joe, keep that rosary going!"
Almost an hour later, the doctor appeared at the double doors. With tears in his eyes, he told the father that his wife and child were doing fine, but that he had no explanation as to how this could be. The placenta had come before the baby and had the appearance of dried autumn leaves. He exclaimed that only a miracle could have delivered this living little baby girl to her loving family.
This happened over forty years ago. The new parents were mine; that baby is my little sister. Our family has remained devoted to Our Lord and His Most Blessed Mother, through the instrument of The Rosary, a source of miracles even our own Jewish doctor has been moved many time since to proclaim.
O Virgin Mother of God, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary, pray for us!
My Brother Dougie's Life Was Spared by the Rosary
sent in by Patty Therese, SFO
I was praying the Rosary one evening several years ago and had just finished when I got a telephone call that my brother's apartment house had burned down and that miraculously he had been able to escape unharmed.
Someone in the building fell asleep with a lit cigarette and that man was burned to death.
The ironic thing is that my brother is a very sound sleeper and had he been asleep at that time, they might not have been able to awaken him.
I used to ask Jesus and Mary to bless all of our family as I prayed, and I know that my brother, Dougie, is alive today because of their help, as I was praying the Rosary at the time of the fire.
Another interesting thing is that he always faithfully wears our Lady's Miraculous Medal and has a love for the Blessed Mother. He has not been attending church for many years, but yet somehow he always wears her Miraculous Medal. I also keep him enrolled and am hopeful that he will return to the sacraments one day through the i ntercession of Our Dear Blessed Mother.
Just thought I'd share it with you all. I am hopeful others will read it and learn of the great power of prayer and especially of the Rosary.
Mother Teresa's Rosary and Jim
sent in by Heather
Jim Castle was tired when he boarded his plane in Cincinnati, Ohio, that night in 1981. The 45-year-old management consultant had put on a Week-long series of business meetings and seminars, and now he sank gratefully into his seat ready for the flight home to Kansas City, Kansas.
As more passengers entered, the place hummed with conversation, mixed with the sound of bags being stowed. Then, suddenly, people fell silent. The quiet moved slowly up the aisle like an invisible wake behind a boat. Jim craned his head to see what was happening, and his mouth dropped open. Walking up the aisle were two nuns clad in simple white habits bordered in blue. He recognized the familiar face of one at once, the wrinkled skin, the eyes warmly intent. This was a face he'd seen in newscasts and on the cover of TIME. The two nuns halted, and Jim realized that his seat companion was going to be Mother Teresa!
As the last few passengers settled in, Mother Teresa and her companion pulled out rosaries. Each decade of the beads was a different colour, Jim noticed. The decades represented various areas of the world, Mother Teresa told him later, and added, "I pray for the poor and dying on each continent." The airplane taxied to the runway, and the two women began to pray, their voices a low murmur.
Though Jim considered himself not a very religious Catholic who went to church mostly out of habit, inexplicably he found himself joining in. By the time they murmured the final prayer, the place had reached cruising altitude. Mother Teresa turned toward him. For the first time in his life, Jim understood what people meant when they spoke of a person possessing an "aura". As she gazed at him, a sense of peace filled him; he could no more see it than he could see the wind, but he felt it, just as surely as he felt a warm summer breeze. "Young man," she inquired, "do you say the rosary often?" "No, not really," he admitted. She took his hand, while her eyes probed his. Then she smiled. "Well, you will now." And she dropped her rosary into his palm. An hour later, Jim entered the Kansas City airport, where he was met by his wife, Ruth. "What in the world?" Ruth asked when she noticed the rosary in his hand. They kissed and Jim described his encounter. Driving home, he said. "I feel as if I met a true sister of God." Nine months later Jim and Ruth visited Connie, a friend of theirs for several years. Connie confessed that she'd been told she had ovarian cancer. "The doctor says it's a tough case," said Connie, "but I'm going to fight it. I won't give up." Jim clasped her hand. Then, after reaching into his pocket, he gently twined Mother Teresa's rosary around her fingers. He told her the story and said, "Keep it with you Connie. It may help." "Although Connie wasn't Catholic, her hand closed willingly around the small plastic beads."Thank you," she whispered. "I hope I can return it." More than a year passed before Jim saw Connie again. This time, face glowing, she hurried toward him and handed him the rosary "I carried it with me all year," she said. "I've had surgery and have been on chemotherapy, too. Last month, the doctors did second-look surgery, and the tumor’s gone. Completely! "Her eyes met Jim's.
"I knew it was time to give the rosary back."
In the fall of 1987, Ruth's sister, Liz, fell into a deep depression after her divorce. She asked Jim if she could borrow the rosary, and when he sent it, she hung it over her bedpost in a small velvet bag. "At night I held on to it, just physically held on. I was so lonely and afraid," she says," yet when I gripped that rosary, I felt as if I held a loving hand." Gradually, Liz pulled her life together, and she mailed the rosary back. "Someone else may need it," she said. Then one night in 1988, a stranger telephoned Ruth. She'd heard about the rosary from a neighbour and asked if she could borrow it to take to the hospital where her mother lay in a coma. The family hoped the rosary might help their mother die peacefully. A few days later, the woman returned the beads. "The nurses told me a coma patient can still hear," she said, "so I explained to my mother that I had Mother Teresa's rosary and that when I gave it to her she could let go; it would be all rosary in her hand. Right away, we saw her face relax. The lines smoothed out until she looked so peaceful, so young." The woman's voice caught. "A few minutes later she was gone." Fervently, she gripped Ruth's hands. "Thank you." Is there special power in those humble beads? Or is the power of the human spirit simply renewed in each person who borrows the rosary? Jim only knows that requests continue to come often unexpectedly. He always responds though whenever he lends the rosary. He says, "When you're through needing it, send it back. Someone else may need it."
Jim's own life has changed, too, since his unexpected meeting on the airplane. When he realized Mother Teresa carries everything she owns in a small bag, he made an effort to simplify his own life. Jim now says, "I try to remember what really counts - not money or titles or possessions, but the way we love others."
One Decade Rosary Miracle
sent in by Kathleen
Recently I sent my story of my Husband's death and the change in the Crucifix as a sign that he was then safe with God. ( you can read it here: Kathleen's Beautiful Experience )
In the last weeks of my Husband's illness my son decided to purchase me a mobile phone. I usually catch on to things like this quite well. Clearly I had not this time. My very kind daughter-in-law had left me at the hospital after my Husband sent for me. When I realized it would be all right to go home I went down stairs, thinking I would ring her to come and pick me up. I did not know how to use the phone! Try as I could. I did not wish to go back inside the hospital. One thing to do, pray the Rosary. I had just finished the first decade, when I looked up to see my daughter-in-law standing in front of me. I asked how she came to be there. Her reply was that she was in the car and suddenly thought she had to come to the hospital. Thank you Our Lady of the Holy Rosary. Frequently just a decade has helped particularly when feeling anxious. Also, I am just loving the Luminous Decades. Love and peace to you all, Kathleen.
A Modern Two-Second Rosary Miracle
sent in by Dr. Stephen A. Rinehart
Yesterday (11/13/2002), my wife Cindy and I boarded a Boeing 757 (full of people - about 280) at Raleigh, NC about 4 pm and weather had been bad (rain and wind all day with huge thunderheads). I had asked Blessed Mother to spread Her Mantle of Protection over the plane and started saying a Rosary before boarding and asked Her to protect everyone on board. I felt at the time that Cindy and I were the only ones praying on that flight as we boarded - most everyone started sleeping since we were delayed 40 minutes due to bad weather in Atlanta and Raleigh - part of the storm system that generated 70 tornados.
Devotion to the Rosary Gives Dying Graces
sent in by RoseAnn
I have a wonderful rosary story for you all. I am very devoted to the rosary. My devotion began after being away from the Church for 25 years and a conversion experience related to taking care of my 2 elderly aunts. My aunts (Jo and Helen) were very devoted to the rosary and said it every day. As their caretaker, I would often call in mid-afternoon to check on them and invariably, they would be saying the rosary with the television program. My Aunt Jo would say in her sweet voice, "Can you call back later, honey?" Sometimes busy and frustrated, I would wonder why they couldn't talk to me now and finish the rosary later! The selfishness of my attitude still shocks me to this day.
My aunts eventually grew very ill and frail. One day my Aunt Jo's dear heart gave out and as she lay dying in the emergency room, I somehow knew to call a priest, though she never asked me to. He came and gave her the last sacrament and she died peacefully.
Six months later, my Aunt Helen fell and broke her hip. The paramedics took her to the hospital without her living will and she went into respiratory failure, but was revived. Again, knowing the seriousness of her condition, I called the priest for the last sacrament and she too, died peacefully a few days later. She never made a point of asking me to call the priest either. I just knew I should.
A short time later a friend gave me a pamphlet about the rosary. Contained in this pamphlet were the promises of the rosary, one of which is "you will not be without the last sacrament at the time of your death." This promise hit me like a bolt of lightning, for I was the instrument of the Blessed Mother in fulfilling her promise to my aunts! There could be no denying this miracle that blessed me! I often give rosaries to friends as gifts, especially people who lead the rosary so beautifully and with such devotion that it takes the prayers to glorious heights of praise and honor. I recently sent 100 rosaries to Nigeria in response to a request on your website.
Today I received a phone call from a friend I had dinner with the other night. She was formerly a Catholic but, because of a hurtful experience many years ago, is no longer practicing. At dinner, we began to talk about the great danger our country is in as we face war. I told my friend that I thought the best thing we could do is to pray and that I try to say a rosary every day for peace. My friend had called me to say that she decided to start saying the rosary with a friend whose son is overseas and could be directly affected by the war. She found an old rosary given to her many years ago - she thinks she still remembers how to say it! She wanted me to know that it was our conversation that convinced her to start her little rosary group. I asked to be included and she said that I would be welcome.
What a privilege it is to spread this devotion! I feel so uplifted today and so thankful for the prayers of my aunts that led me back to God and His precious Mother.
There is power and glory and strength and peace in the rosary. As Our Lady directs us, "pray, pray, pray!" I just had to share this with you all. Thank you.
"You Can't Stop Me Loving You"
sent in by Rose Mary
Something wonderful ..and "life changing" happened to my son Thomas...and it is still changing lives of many who knew him...and even some who didn't know him.
Thomas knew all about the dangers of alcohol...but he couldn't accept that his Native American/Scots-Irish background...would make him an addict...so quickly...somehow he thought you had to be "old" to be addicted. Thomas found out about addiction first hand.. He started drinking at 8yrs. old. He would sneak his Dad's beers and then..later with his friends.. he would try out whatever they had. When Thomas was 13yrs. old his dad and I had the final judgement of Divorce... and Thomas joined a gang that day.
Just as he couldn't forsee what addiction could do to his life... he also couldn't forsee what damage could be done to himself, his family and his community...by being a gang member. what followed was a "nightmare".. I won't give you the details.. but I want to tell you of the "change" that Thomas had in his life.
Thomas had a very "tough" exterior... His facial expressions were hard..
and his attitude was unbending.. but that changed on the day that he stood before the same Judge who had seen him so many times before. The court house was empty.. His was the only case being heard that day...because his Defense Lawyer had walked out of the courtroom and off his case...calling him a "punk" and suggesting that the Judge just lock him up and throw the key away...and that I should just forget that I had a son called "Thomas".. count my losses and get on with my life...with my other children.. I told him that because I was a mother, I couldn't forget my son Thomas...and I asked him to pray with me for Thomas... he just laughed.
On this particular day...with no other cases... Thomas knew he had EVERYTHING going against him. The Judge had ordered his Defense Lawyer to represent him.. or be in contempt of court. The Prosecution had already made a deal with Thomas on a previous case...and had dropped some of the charges... but then Thomas went back on his word to testify..and so they were ready to get him this time... He was faced with being adjudicated as an adult..and facing serious charges. When the Judge asked him how he pled...much to everyone's surprise... he pled "Guilty"...even his lawyer was baffled.. Thomas went on to explain that he was an Addict..and that he couldn't be trusted with Freedom...
He then prayed the Our Father and the Hail Mary and as his tears (he NEVER CRIED) fell to the floor...the Prosecution and Defense.. started making incredible changes...in his charges... The final part was when the Judge sentenced him to a Drug Rehab Program... against Thomas' wishes..
He just wanted to be locked up...and the key thrown away...but the lawyers for the Prosecution and for the Defense ..told the Judge that they had confidence in him...and the Judge agreed that he had what it took...even the Court transcriber was crying..and Thomas told them... that he would not let them down.
At the Detention Center..as he awaited a placement in a Rehab Program...he volunteered for Kitchen Duty...something that he would never have done at home... During one of my visits with him...he showed me the big heavy metal bases of the tables where they ate their meals at...and explained that when he "mopped" the floor after meals... some of the strings would come off the mop.... and get caught around the bases of the tables... He would pick them up and put them in his pocket..and later back at his bunk...he would dry them out after he had made them into a ONE DECADE ROSARY... which he then used to teach the other guys.. how to pray it...
They all had their Rope Rosaries... hanging on their bunks...
On another day before he left for his program... one of the other offenders...came to our table with his mother... She told me that she wanted to thank Thomas for saving her son's life... as he had told her of an incident where the other guys in a different module... had tormented her son to the point that he tried to commit suicide.. and the guys kept pushing him to do it... The Staff removed him and put him in a padded cell... after they stripped him down...but he tried to put his head in the toilet... he was so determined to die.
Thomas heard about the situation and asked the Staff..to give him a pair of underpants for the boy..to preserve his dignity..and let him in to the cell.. Thomas calmed the boy and told him that he would be his Guardian while he was there...and would do what was needed to work with the Staff and stop the harassment.. This worked and the boy was able to leave the lock-down and there was no more harassment. . and Thomas prayed with him every day....
When Thomas left the Detention Center to go to the program...he told his "homies" that he would be back but "NOT IN CHAINS"... He kept his promise... He became the main speaker for a program that addressed the problems of youth.. he spoke to THOUSANDS... The Judge who sentenced him.. took time off from the Bench ..to sneak into the Detention Center... to listen to Tom talk to his "brothers from another mother"
He would tell the young offenders..."YOU ARE NOT JUST A BUNCH OF BLACK FINGERPRINTS... YOU ARE NOT JUST A STATISTIC... YOU ARE THE FUTURE...and I BELIEVE IN YOU...and I WILL BE RIGHT THERE WITH YOU... as you get an Education... turn your life around .. have a family... because I AM YOUR BROTHER...and I LOVE YOU... and I will keep coming back ...and if ONLY ONE PERSON...listens to what I'm saying ...THEN MY LIFE IS WORTHWHILE...
Thomas had found out when he arrived at the Drug Program that some of his rival gang bangers were there and out to "get him".... After a confrontation. on arrival.. Thomas ripped off his shirt and showing his "tattoos".. told the group that he "spit on these tattoos... and spit on his colors...and spit on everything that prevented them from being "brothers"... Both Thomas and the other guy were told to "take a walk..and calm down".... When they met up in the courtyard outside... the clenched fists and clenched jaw of the other boy.. gave a clear message to Tom... and as the boy turned on his heel to walk the other way...Tom jumped him from behind...with his arms tight around him...preventing the boy from lashing out.... and Tom kept shouting over and over...."YOU CAN'T STOP ME LOVING YOU!"..... When he released the boy..and they both stood looking at each other.... something "clicked" and the boy.. and Tom... hugged... as the others looked on from behind the classroom windows. This became Tom's new weapon... backed by The Rosary. Thomas died at age 17 in an truck accident...and for two days the Church was full...with ex-gang members, rival gang members... Six Priests, 2 Monsignors concelebrated his Funeral Mass..and the Judge who had sentenced him...gave the Eulogy... The Judge has since written to me...saying...that if he can accomplish just a small part of the good that Tom did in his short life...he will be a happy man.
Picture this...the Judge (a Protestant) giving Tom's Eulogy.... in a Catholic Church...filled with so many young offenders that had stood before him for sentencing.... and for them to hear his words of how...Thomas had been changed from "the inside - out".... was so powerful..... I do believe that many parents will find hope in his story.... that it will increase their faith.... and ultimately fill them with love for their hurting children... and all those who have hurt them. or been hurt by them.. because that is one thing that no one can prevent.... they can't stop us loving them...
What is most memorable is that Thomas OPENLY EMBRACED THOSE WHO USED TO BE HIS ENEMIES... The local Newspaper carried his story on the front page...Thomas had made a commercial for T.V. which was aired two days before he died... so the T.V. aired his story (in part). He consistently spoke out against Abortion..as a violence worse than any war...or gang violence... He even followed a Planned Parenthood speaker at The Boys and Girls Club... and with the aid of Fetal Models...which he passed around... he held one on high, shouting.."Does this look like a blob of tissue to you?.... It looks like a baby to me" He got a standing ovation from the youngsters that day....and they crowded our Prolife Information Table for literature..and just to talk to him..while leaving the P.P. booth to the woman who presented.
Many of the young people he hung with were victims of abortion propaganda... but he helped them to see that it was really a LIFE...and that no one had the right to take a LIFE... only God had that right. He encouraged couples who were living together to get married.. They still come by my house to show me their new babies... or tell me they're still going to Church...
Tom had signed up to go to College and wanted to be a Drug and Alcohol Counselor...when he graduated... He wanted to get married and have a family.... he had hope for the future..but he told me many times.. that he didn't think he would live to se 18. The night before he died...one of his friends asked him...as they watched a T.V. movie.."Tom..if you were to die today...where do you think you would go"? Thomas said.."I know I've not been an Angel.. but if I die...today... I believe I would go to Heaven...because I REALLY BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST."....They had nicknamed him "Preacher Man"
Tom always loved children. Two hours before he died he had been playing with a friend's toddler. He loved to play basketball, or football. He loved to toss and catch the football... That was what he used to do before he got caught up in a world of guns, drugs and drink, and living in the fast lane. But that fateful day he returned to the innocent game of his childhood.. When he left with his 16yr.old friend to move the furniture of a friend whose house had flooded... he was wearing his scapular... and when his friend's truck hydroplaned on the wet curve in the street... and ended at the Light Pole.... I believe that God saw his very best quarterback, and decided he deserved a broader field, because Tom had greater games to play.
Since his death.... five little boys have been named after him... some who might have been aborted if their parents had not heard Tom's message... "no one has the right to take a life"... Many make visits to his grave... where they look at his picture on the headstone... and in looking into his eyes...they see themselves... more clearly.... As a result, some have asked for help to get off the drugs and alcohol...
and entered programs... Others...leave their gang colors...or their addictive substance... with a note... that they are finally listening to his message...and are "laying it down...and doing the right thing" I put a mail box up by his grave because I was getting all these notes... that were left there...asking Tom to help them...or from parents...asking Tom to help their teens... and then the Thank You notes for prayers answered...
On All Souls Day....we had a Prayer Service and a Blessing of the Graves of our loved ones...after the morning Mass.... and a family from three rows back...came and told me that they had left prayers.. and that they had been answered... I showed them Tom's friend ...who is also buried close by...he was shot by the police... but he had put his scapular on the night before... telling his friend that he felt he should wear it..because Tom had his on when he died. I had given out Scapulars and Rosary Beads at Tom's Funeral and so I did the same at this young man's funeral... and I have already ran across some who took them..and have had a "turn around" in their lives...the Judge who sentenced him so many times...gave his Eulogy.... and last Christmas sent me a card...saying that if he could accomplish before he died, just a little of what Tom had done in his short life....he would die a happy
Our Lady told St.Dominic...that one day She would save the World, through the Rosary and the Scapular.. I have witnessed this reality... in the lives and deaths...of those young people ... so despised by society...but so loved by God...and His Blessed Mother.... Both their headstones have Our Lady of Guadalupe and the Divine Mercy... and the Rosary and Scapular hanging around the necks of the statues.placed there.. as a witness to the power of LOVE..... I can still hear him shout out.... "YOU CAN'T STOP ME LOVING YOU"..
I was the Director of a Crisis Pregnancy Center when Tom died... and as I was typing this post ...my eye caught the short article that I had written two years after he died... and it shows how Tom's Mission isn't over... It is titled "HER WORST SUSPICIONS...AND DREAMS CAME TRUE"
"I hope it's just the flu, I'm too old to have another baby, my kids are grown. I just kicked my husband out, he's a junkie, plus my daughter has been acting strange lately. I have this gut feeling that she might be pregnant. I'm gonna bring her with me and she can have a test also."
When they were filling out the "intake forms" the teenage daughter asked her mother what she should write for the question: "ABORTION - ADOPTION - PARENT" Her mother let her know that a baby wasn't an option for either of them. While we waited for the test results, I shared some of my past family problems, and how God had turned things around for the good. I showed them a short clipping of a video that Thomas had made before he died, and that is when I found out that the mother knew my son...he was friends with one of her sons. She then realized that God had a plan for her baby, just as He had for my son.
When her daughter's test showed "Positive" also, she had already decided for LIFE.. Her daughter has become her mother's best friend and helper in the caring and raising of the two infant children. She has improved her grades at school and her mother has custody of her new grandchild.
We are happy for the outcome and also for the ongoing contact with them.
Your sister in Jesus, through Mary, in Union with St. Joseph, for "LIFE"
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