By: Lilliana Olazaran
Our story begins with a troubled marriage and two children, ages 20 and 3. My husband and I had decided that living in the city had become to much and maybe moving to the countryside would slow things down a pace or two. We had actually just moved 7 miles out but just far enough that the countryside welcomed us nicely. We purchased a quaint little house that sat on an acre and our neighbors were "a holler away". In the first 2 yrs we did some "remodeling" and set up my husbands business towards the back of the property. What followed the next two years made me question my faith. There were changes that were inexplicable, to the point that my son questioned me-looked for answers from me. Things that i had seen in movies or read in books but never that made me believe that they really happened; like, the bump in the night, the sound of someone dragging something large like a sled across the roof of the house, the constant rearranging of the silverware, the "visitor" in the kitchen, the big black dog amidst my dogs, the cat at the window, the pacing in the dining room and the door that would be open/unlocked every morning. Every night I prayed for the safety of my family and that the activity would stop, but to no avail. The year that followed became more of a challenge. We noticed that my husband began to change to the point that we could not even breathe. He became verbally/physically abusive, vile, belligerent-someone we didnt recognize. For 5 months he would come home and stir things up, leave and the activity would start. At 3 a.m. the activity was at its highest then at 4am my husband would arrive and the activity would stop. One midnight, about a week after Christmas, we were outside and i was watering the glass and plants while my son was playing with his new camera and we spoke about some things while my 3 yr old played on the porch (it was intolerable in the house). To change the subject, my son suggested we take different pictures of the water cascading for the kodak pic contest. He mustve taken 50 pictures. When we went to develope the pictures, 6 pictures had images-images that made me fear. I spoke to a clergy for the Catholic church and they asked me to present the pictures to them. They looked at the images and all froze with a look of awe. They then told me I had captured St Rafael in those images. I cried. Suddenly the fear, the question of "does GOD hear me", the doubt - all left me and just like that i thought to myself, "am I worthy of God sending me an archangel"? The clery asked me what had transpired to bring forth this outcome. I explained from the day we moved in to this moment. I didnt understand how they knew this was St Rafael. In the pictures taken, the light rays had a green tinge to them. The clergy showed me his facts and compared to my pictures. I felt a great sense of relief, i went home and shared this with my father and son. The activity continued until the day we packed up and left - yes, my husband stayed behind as well. I now lead a much happier life with my dad and children. The pictures stayed with the clergy.
Some may never see with earthly eyes these heavenly beings or know that they exist. Many are unaware of the numerous ways they have protected and guided us. We would like to share with you the stories of people who take pleasure in expressing how real angels are.
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It would be easy to concentrate on the mystical experiences God gave this saint, rather than on her life. In fact, it would be difficult to do differently, so overwhelming were those gifts from God. The temptation for many modern readers (including the author) would be to see little to identify with in these graces and walk away without seeing more. The other ... continue reading
Lorenzo Ruiz is the first Filipino saint. He is also the first Filipino martyred for the Christian Faith. Lorenzo Ruiz was a layman, married, and had two sons and a daughter. Born in Binondo, Manila, about 1600's, he was educated in the school of the Dominicans there. He served as an altar boy and later was a helper and clerk-sacristan in the church of Binondo. ... continue reading
Barbara lived in the 4th century and brought up as a heathen. A tyrannical father, Dioscorus, had kept her jealously secluded in a lonely tower which he had built for that purpose. Here, in her forced solitude, she gave herself to prayer and study, and contrived to receive instruction and Baptism in secret by a Christian priest. Barbara resisted her father's ... continue reading
The name Gabriel means "man of God," or "God has shown himself mighty." It appears first in the prophesies of Daniel in the Old Testament. The angel announced to Daniel the prophecy of the seventy weeks. His name also occurs in the apocryphal book of Henoch. He was the angel who appeared to Zachariah to announce the birth of St. John the Baptizer. Finally, he ... continue reading
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While praying at Peter's tomb, she experienced the great weight of the Church fall on her shoulders, and she offered herself and her ... continue reading
Does the heroic leadership of Pope Benedict XVI represent one more fulfillment of the prophetic vision of the Saint whose Feast we ... continue reading
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