Take Over! an
anointed, inspirational account of how the Blessed Mother -- as Undoer
of Knots -- should be handed our daily trials large and small as we
watch her work wonders with them -- turning obstacles into miracles! This
booklet is by the same group that brings us 'Mary Undoer of Knots' and
though small brims with powerful examples of how the Virgin Mary can enter
any situation -- can help you against any 'Goliath' -- and make things better than ever.
MARY APPEARED NEAR FATIMA CENTURIES BEFORE FAMED APPARITION, A PRESENCE ACROSS EUROPE
Many don't realize that centuries before the apparitions at Fatima, Portugal (which culminated on October 13, 1917), Mary had manifested in that very vicinity.
Heaven idealized little shepherds like those in and around Fatima where there was a girl from Reguengo do Fetal (right near Fatima) in the 1100s who found the bread and spring to which she was directed by the Blessed Mother and where there was also another girl, another seer, this one deaf, from Casal Santa Maria, a hamlet about a mile and a half from Fatima.
She saw Mary sometime in the Middle Ages -- in the 1400s -- over a cluster of ortiga bushes. Here right next to Fatima! Mary smiled and made an odd request. She asked the girl, who could suddenly hear, for one of her lambs. It was a test of obedience.
Suddenly the girl spoke as if deafness had never afflicted her. "I would have to have permission from my father," she said. And Mary smiled as the girl scurried off to do just that.
Naturally, her father was flabbergasted, awestruck and overjoyed at her ability to speak. He told his daughter that the Blessed Woman could have the lamb and anything else she wanted. We can only imagine his joy. News of the miracle swept the village and everywhere else word could spread in the era before mass communication. Numerous townsfolk went to see the "mute"child and after hearing her account followed her to the site of appearance. There to their further astonishment they found a wooden statue in the midst of the ortigas. Mary was holding the Christ Child, this time in her right arm, her cheeks rosy, her stare intent and straightforward.
Full of fervor they took the statue to the village but that night it disappeared and was found back in the bushes, the spot Mary had chosen for a chapel.
That was the hinterlands of Portugal and from here on there was a great rise in Mary's appearances. Images of the Virgin were found in chestnuts and alden trees or buried in the ground and wrapped with silk, often in mint condition, across Europe. Strange wisps of cloud were seen as in the time of Elijah (and as predicted, perhaps, in Revelation 1:7).
No one can reckon all the dreams and apparitions. No one could guess the number of visions. The Madonna appeared with special persistence in Italy, France, and Spain. Another example of a deaf-mute? On March 24 -- once more in the 12th century -- a young deaf girl was pasturing geese on a meadow in Borbiago, Italy, when she saw a magnificent lady in a light so bright that the girl had to close her eyes.
The woman approached and placed her hands on one of the girl's shoulders, asking her (as only Mary could communicate to the deaf) to bring the local priest and indicate that he dig there. If he did, explained Mary, he'd find a marble statue, which should be carried in a solemn procession to the church and enshrined.
The girl apparently was able to complete the task and as in Castellammare de Stabia the excavation was very fruitful and indeed miraculous, volunteers soon striking something that gave forth a metallic sound. Digging deeper they uncovered a bronze bell. Within its cavity was the promised statue, which depicted Mary in a standing position with the Infant as usual on her left arm, His little hands fondling her right one. There were hundreds of lost or hidden images, all with stories, all with precious secrets, during this intense period.
In Tendilla, Spain, two knights from the Saint John of Jerusalem Order were hunting in an area called the "Valley of Hell" when they were surprised by a terrific storm. Lightning flashed and thunder reverberated against the rocky cliffs. Accustomed though they were to danger, the storm, in its fury, scared even these knights, who took shelter beneath an overhang and invoked the Virgin.
Almost immediately a light shone forth from a nearby willow and as it strengthened, as it grew brighter, the storm decreased in violence. When the knights approached they were surprised to find an image of Mary in the crotch of the tree. They fell to their knees in astonishment.
Back near her first apparition site of Saragossa, Spain (Mary's very first site of known apparition), the Blessed Mother returned and manifested around this same time at a mountaintop known as Villamayor to a humble shepherd named Gerardo, who discovered a wooden statue that spoke to him. As in so many cases the Virgin's voice asked him to tell the people about her image and build a shrine on the mountain in her honor, which then allowed her greater intercession.
[resources: The Last Secret and Spirit Daily pilgrimage to Medjugorje]
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