by Fr. Cajetan Mary da Bergamo, an
extremely popular classic full of wisdom and gems of instruction on how we
attain one of the most important characteristics of holiness -- humility
deep in our spirits. From every direction, Fr. Bergamo marshals up reasons
to practice humility and why it was so important in the lives of saints. No
one enters Heaven without it -- and so we must know how to assess ourselves
and how to build this powerful characteristic in the depth of our souls!
FROM THE MAIL: VIEWERS RECOUNT MORE CASES OF LOST OBJECTS LATER FOUND 'MIRACULOUSLY'
Many, it seems, have had the experience of losing something dear and important, only to find it show up again, in a way that implies the miraculous -- and in some cases, seems to preclude any other explanation.
That's Our Lord: always recovering what we lose! It's not always a miraculous "materialization." Most often, He simply directs us as to where to look -- whether in our spiritual lives or physical reality.
We have related some of the feedback before. But there has been additional mail.
"About 12 years ago my husband lost his wedding ring," noted, for example, Peggy Diesburg of Denver. "For three weeks we looked all over for it. Underneath beds, behind and under furniture. We could not find it anywhere.
"Then on a Sunday morning the ring was lying on top of the bedroom dresser in a very obvious place. Now it's a place we passed every day (as much as five or six times a day). This was our bedroom dresser! Every day my husband would take his clothes out of the drawer in the dresser and would have easily noticed the ring had it been laying on top. When my husband found the ring on the dresser, he thought I had found the ring and failed to tell him. Of course, that was not the case. I was as surprised as he was when it was found. We both looked at each other in amazement. Definitely a miracle! No other explanation except a miracle."
Says viewer Carmela Valeno: "When I was 18 years old, I took off my chain and lost my favorite medal of the Holy Family. I knew it was right there in my room but for three days we were unable to find it. I had a white carpet -- so a gold medal would show up quickly. We used flashlights, etcetera. However, my family and I kept praying that I would find it.
"And on thethird night, in a dream I was told to wake up and I would find the medal on the floor. I did that [in the dream] and sure enough, in the darkness of the room, there was the gold medal shining on the floor right where I had walked many times! I picked up the medal and then went back to sleep knowing that it was not a dream but a miracle. The next morning the medal was exactly where I had placed it when I awoke!"
"I read with interest your story about things that have been lost and found again," noted Karen Wameling-Kahler of Utica, New York. "I have prayed for St. Anthony's intercession many times during my life and through his intercession have recovered my lost or misplaced items. The time that was most miraculous dealt with a ring. My mother died as a result of a car accident three weeks before I turned four years old. When I was 29, my boyfriend asked my father for permission to marry me. My father was very pleased and as a gift after my engagement gave me my mother's engagement ring. My mother was a small-boned and more petite woman than I am, so I lovingly wore her engagement ring on my pinky finger.
"Every year since I was 12 or 13 my immediate family has gathered together for a week spent at my parents' time-share in Ocean City Maryland (my dad remarried). This particular year (that I'm recounting), my husband and I could not get a whole week off from work, so we decided to go for a four day weekend.
"The first day was spent on the beach. We packed a lot of fun and sun into that four-day weekend, and ate a lot of good meals including Maryland crabs. But the night before we were to leave, I noticed my mother's ring was gone. You can imagine how my heart sank! My husband and I looked in every possible place we could, retracing our steps, notifying the police, everything: to no avail. How would I ever tell my father that I lost the ring? I decided that the very next morning after arriving home that I would go to the local Catholic book store and purchase a Novena to St. Anthony.
"I did, and started praying it immediately. The days passed, and no ring.
"About a week later my phone rang and it was my step mom.
"She and my dad had just gotten back from the ocean (they had stayed for the whole week) and she said, 'Karen, did you lose a ring?' I said y-e-s-s very slowly, because I had no idea why she was asking or how she could know unless the condo manager or the police had contacted them.
"Then she asked, 'What ring?'
"Again I hesitated, and finally said my mother's. She said, 'Here, I better give the phone to your father.'
"My father got on the phone. Apparently, the day after my husband and I left, he had taken a walk down to the beach, saw something glinting in the sun, picked it up, and was going to toss it thinking it was a pop-top off of a can -- and something made him look at it twice.
"He saw that it was a ring, not even thinking at all about my mother's, and showed it to my step-mother. She's the one who recognized it. When I heard this I remembered our first day at the ocean (Friday) and how I had took off my watch and ring and stuck them in a side pocket in my beach bag. I had not had the ring on since that day. My father found the ring on Tuesday. The sand cleaners -- big huge trucks that filter the sand and rake it to free it from garbage and debris -- go through every night. I could not get over how after all those days on a beach so vast, with all of those people every day, my father out of all people who didn't even know I had lost my ring found it. I praised God and thanked St. Anthony. I knew that it was a true miracle.
"By the way my father's name is Anthony."
Sometimes what we have lost is not a thing but a feeling or simple happiness. This too can be relocated in God's "lost and found"!
"As a Christmas present I received the book The Spirits Around Us," writes Cindy Schwenk Accetta Dodge of Virginia. "Finally I have a name for an experience that happened to me in 1984. It was a 'visitation dream.' My late husband died of Hodgkin's Disease in April of 1984 at the young age of 24. I was 23 at the time. We had a two-year-old and a newborn infant. I was exhausted and the grief got the best of me. I desperately wanted to know what happened to Tomís soul. I would scream out of my apartment window, 'God can you hear me I need you.' I couldnít sleep, I had nightmares, and I wanted answers as to why this had happened in my life. My poor priest: I needed him to give me answers. I was probably sucking the life out of him with all the spiritual needs I had in my life at that time!
"One afternoon my pastor prayed for me over the phone. He prayed that I would find peace.
"Drained, I placed my children down for a nap and thought I would take one too. Upon falling asleep my late husband, Tom, appeared to me. The two of us were enveloped in the most incredible peace I had ever felt in my life. It actually felt as though we were encased in a peaceful protection that was about three-feet deep around the two of us, almost like an invisible capsule. My late husband and I talked for what seemed like hours and hours. It was really deep. I had questions and I needed answers. I asked him what happened as he died, where he was, and what kind of existence he had; I asked about God. Like I said, we talked for hours and hours and I was given answers to every question I had. While talking I understood every thing that was said to me. The conversation was very detailed. Yet when I woke I could not remember anything he said. Interestingly, upon waking, I still remained inside a protection of total peace.
"It was like the Lord was holding me in His arms. I remember saying, 'God, is this what Heaven feels like, because I donít ever want it to end?' The peace lasted for about fifteen minutes more and I will never forget it. I still long for it. The closest I have come to this feeling since is sitting in the Presence of the Blessed Sacrament."
We find a lot of things (including ourselves) there.
[resources: The Spirit Around Us and The God of Miracles]
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