Thursday, October 25, 2007

JULY 1988:


In this Marian year 1987-1988, the couple and their children made a pilgrimage to the main shrines of the Blessed Virgin, with the purpose of "checking out" young Francis's vocation to the priesthood. They were arriving in Rome from San Sebastian de Garabandal where, a few days earlier, July 16, on the very Feastday of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Maria Dolores and Melanie had received their First Communion from the hands of the present pastor, Don Juan Gonzalez himself!

Fr. Robert Francis Lee Graves had previously arranged the stay of the LaFleur's in Rome, and especially their meeting with the Pope. A member of the High Anglican Church, the latter, then a cadet of nineteen years at the prestigious Military Academy of West Point (New York, U.S.A.) had converted to Catholicism on Good Friday 1974.

Because of her role as one of the main protagonists of Garabandal, Mari-Loli was apprehensive about the interview with the Holy Father. But Mother Teresa of Calcutta once again had intervened to comfort the visionary, promising to pray for a positive outcome of her initiative . . . Ordained priest in June 1987 in St. Peter's Basilica by John Paul II himself, Fr. Lee Graves, on this July 23, 1988, presented Mari-Loli and her family to the Pope, addressing the Sovereign Pontiff in these words: "Your Holiness, a special blessing for the smallest of your children who come from San Sebastian de Garabandal." John Paul II then exclaimed: "GARABANDAL!" Then he kissed straight away the two little girls, Maria Dolores and Melanie, blessed the young Francis, and thereafter opening out his arms as if to embrace the whole family!

Without endorsing Garabandal openly, the Pope's attitude, might we presume, was expressing here at least some form of a positive spiritual discernment, just like acting also 'personally,' as he had already done the previous year, when receiving Joey Lomangino and his family during their own stopover in Rome on the occasion of the same Marian Year.
[From 'Garabandal' Book, pages 244-245]

There's some great photos of this meeting with the Pope and Mari-Loli and her family in this book, like the one above. Someday I hope to get copies of them all and post them. There is another photo of Mother Teresa encouraging Mari-Loli before she left for Rome. By the way, her children are adorable!

That's the end of the story except for a few pages of reflection on what we have been posting here. I'll try to post some of the important events and words of the seers and also recap with a run down of what the Warning, the Miracle and the Great Sign will consist of. And there is the conditional chastisement. So we are not finished yet!!! Care to comment?
Roman Deacon

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