I have never been to Medjugorje and not experienced problems before leaving that seemed to have the potential to destroy the trip. This 3rd trip was no exception. There was just one problem after another before leaving. The problems continued after we left all the way until we reached Medjugorje almost 2 days late. The problems ranged from borderline sickness to threats of terrorism and almost everything in between.
This trip originated suddenly but looking back I now realize it was in the making for some time, even before I realized it. It astounded me the way in came together in perfect synchronization with the 13’s 33’s and 333’s. The trip originated with just my family going but turned into a reunion of all 6 people who went on the first trip back in August 2001.
In addition to that I was stunned when I found out that Don G who accompanied Ted and I on the 2nd trip back in September/October 2002 was going to be on the same trip. Everyone who was on the 1st and 2nd trip were the members on the 3rd trip. Besides my family this included Ted Szymanski, Roberta Marziani, David G and Don G.
Friday December 26
The day of departure finally arrived and I knew it had started when I woke up that morning and the first thing I saw was the clock next to the bed. The time was 7:13. I attended mass at "Parish Church". After mass I prayed the rosary and when I finished it I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13.
I drove to "hometown" Hospital to visit Bob G. He was in very critical condition but he did know who I was and as I was leaving he said “I love you”. Considering Bob’s condition I thought there was a good chance this would be the last time I ever saw him. I walked out of the hospital door and glanced at my watch and the time was 9:33.
I then rode over to my sisters house to pick up C.R.C. who had spent the night there and as we were leaving the thought of everyone going from both trips glanced through my mind. I looked at my watch and it said XX:XX:13. We arrived home and David G was already there and again the same thought ran through my mind causing me to look again and it said XX:XX:13.
Before leaving for Medjugorje I ran through a mental checklist and remembered I needed to call Pat R to tell her that I would not be here to teach CCD on January 5th. I called her and left the message with her husband. I hung up and realized that everything I needed to do was now done. I felt that special peace run through me and so I looked at my watch and the time was 12:33.
I helped S.C.C. with a few things she wanted to do before leaving and carried the suitcases out to the car. When we were ready I started the car to leave and the time on the dash was 1:13. S.C.C. wanted to stop at her mothers house to drop off some dog food and say good by. We arrived and S.C.C.’s mom was not home. We were pulling out of her driveway to leave when S.C.C.’s mother pulled in the driveway. The time was 1:33. We said goodbye and left.
We drove to Leesburg and went to Ted’s house. We pulled in the driveway and the odometer was 13. We left our car in Ted’s driveway and took a Washington Flyer taxi to Dulles. The taxi was supposed to be there at 3:15 but was late. When it arrived we loaded our bags and left for the airport. At the very instant we pulled out I felt that special peace again and it was very, very strong. I then noticed the time on the dash of the taxi was 3:33. I glanced at my watch because it was so strong and it said 3:33:13.
We arrived at Dulles and met up with Roberta and Don and 19 other people we did not know who were also going to Medjugorje with Fiat Voluntas Tua that was led by Lynn Hoffman. It took a long time to go through security because of the orange terrorism alert. It was unreal. We boarded the Austria Airlines plane and it undocked from the boarding ramp and started to move at 6:33.
Saturday December 27
We flew all night to Vienna, Austria and had a 4 hour scheduled layover waiting for our connecting flight to Sarajevo. This is where we encountered additional problems that just seemed to have no end. The weather was bad and the flight was delayed several more hours. We sat in the airport and waited. I sat down and caught up my daily journal and at the very instant I finished I again felt the peaceful feeling and knew Our Lady was in complete control. Again it was so strong I knew to look at my watch and the time was 10:13.
We finally boarded our plane to Sarajevo and took off. We came within 1 minute of landing in Sarajevo when the pilot aborted the landing and flew back to Vienna because of fog. We arrived back in Vienna and again as we were getting off the plane I felt that special sense of peace and looked at my watch and the time was 5:13.
We hoped to catch the next flight which was scheduled for 7 PM but it was cancelled as well and we were stranded in Vienna. After much confusion and a very hard trip up to this point we got a hotel near the airport. S.C.C. and C.R.C. went to bed. I sat in a chair in the hotel room and had a sudden desire to pray the rosary. I had lost all track of time and when I started the rosary I glanced at my watch and the time was 11:13 and I completed it at 11:33. The clock in the room said 23:33. I then went to bed.
Sunday December 28
We got up and again the confusion continued, it was a bad morning but got better as we boarded a shuttle that took us from the hotel to St. Stephen’s Cathradral for mass. It was snowing and the shuttle dropped us off and we had to walk the last 4 blocks or so. St. Stephen’s was built back in the 1600’s and was very beautiful. The mass started at 9:00 and again the strong sense of peace struck out of nowhere just as we stood up for the gospel. I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13. The same sense of peace struck again just as we knelt down for the Consecration and the time was 9:33.
After mass we returned to the hotel on the shuttle and somehow Roberta got separated from us and missed it. As we got off of the shuttle bus the odometer was 13. I was not looking for it I just happened to notice it.
We got back to the hotel and was told that the airline had cancelled all flights to Sarajevo because of the fog. Lynn Hoffman who runs the trips to Medjugorje then talked to the airlines and there just happened to be a plane on another airline that was going to fly to Zagreb, Croatia. There were 26 of us and it just so happened there were exactly 26 available seats on that flight to Zagreb.
We had about an hour before departure and Roberta finally showed up at the airport just in time. We thought she was going to miss the flight. Lynn called the group together at the airport and told us that she had just gotten off the phone with the Medjugorje visionary Mirjana Soldo and that she had said that she was “very sorry for the many inconveniences on this trip and that we were given many crosses to bear so that Our Lady can give us the extra graces that will enter into hour hearts on this trip.” When Lynn told us what Mirjana had said that sudden sense of peace hit again. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13. I then also caught up the journal and completed the entry at 12:33.
The airport announced that it was time to board the flight to Zagreb, the attendant took our boarding pass and we got on the shuttle that takes you to the plane. The time was 1:33. We got on the plane and our group filled the somewhat small plane to full capacity. There were exactly enough seats. The plane took off and the wheels left the runway at 2:13.
We landed in Zagreb and there was a bus that had been sent to pick us up for an 8 hour ride to Medjugorje. The bus had a license plate of XX13. S.C.C. asked me to go get her a Coke. I did and when I got back I took my seat on the bus and was suddenly filled with peace and a knowledge that this trip despite all the problems was going exactly as it was supposed to. It was so strong I knew to look at my watch and the time was 3:33:33.
It was a very long ride to Medjugorje and during the ride Don and Roberta said they wanted climb Apparition Hill first thing no matter what the time. The roads are very narrow and wrap around the mountains. The bus seldom went over 35 or 40 miles per hour. It was raining off and on and near ice conditions.
During the ride there were many times that a sudden, piercing thought of something about Emmitsburg and its relation to Medjugorje would crash through my mind with out warning. Each time it happened I would glance at my watch and it would say XX:XX:13 or 33. The strongest one occurred at 11:13:33.
As we got closer to Medjugorje I had a strong sense of happiness about going back again it was so strong I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:33. At that very instant I looked up and saw the very first road sign with the word Medjugorje and an arrow pointing the way.
Monday December 29
We arrived at the border checkpoint where you leave Croatia and enter Bosina-Hercegovina and again it looked like there might be a problem because our unscheduled bus that we were in was missing some document needed to enter the country. The border patrol detained the bus and somehow the driver was able to talk his way through and they let us go. I mention this as an example of delays that are beyond anyones control that determine our arrival times at certain places. The same is true in Emmitsburg. The circumstances are always different but with the same results.
Shortly after entering Bosina-Hercegovina I was again struck with a mental recall of some Emmitsburg events that continue seamlessly into Medjugorje. There is no need to write them here because they have been documented in past papers. When these sudden, vivid memories of so many events ran through my mind I glanced at my watch and the time was 12:13:33.
We finally arrived in Medjugorje and the bus pulled up to Mirjana’s house who is one of the six visionaries which is where we stayed . We got off the bus and the time was 1:13. At this point Roberta asked if I was going to climb Apparition Hill and I said no because I was tired and it was raining lightly.
We took our bags to our rooms and then Don said “Lets climb Apparition Hill”. David Guinn said he wanted to go to. A few minutes later another person named Mike Moran said he was going too. I decided to go and I honestly forgot all about Roberta saying she wanted to go too. Roberta had already gone to her room and we left without her. We started walking towards Apparition Hill and just as we left I glanced at my watch and the time was 1:33.
We arrived at the foot of Apparition Hill and started climbing. The rocks were slick and it was cold and wet but that did not seem to bother anybody. When we got to the top and reached the statue of Our Lady of Medjugorje the rain had stopped and the sky started to clear. I looked at my watch and the time was 2:13.
Mike looked up and started to cry because the first thing he saw when the clouds started to break was the constellation Orion. He then told us the story about himself and 2 other scuba divers being left by a dive boat 26 miles from shore in the Philippians back in 1970 and having to swim back to shore. He used the constellation Orion to navigate the 24 hour swim back to shore. After Mike told us this we said some prayers and started back down the hill. The rocks were still wet and slick but we did not encounter any problems and reached the bottom of Apparition Hill at 3:33 AM.
We slept for a few hours and got up and ate breakfast at 8:AM. During breakfast Roberta found out that 4 of us climbed Apparition Hill shortly after we arrived after telling her that we were not going. Her feelings were hurt and she avoided us after that. I tried to explain that it was not intentional and that we were not trying to leave her out. It was just a sudden, unexpected change in plans that occurred that I did not expect.
The group then took taxis to St. James church for the 10 AM English speaking mass. Normally we would walk but it was raining again. During mass I had a lot of sudden thoughts about our problem with Roberta and I knew she felt like we tried to dump her. I said some prayers for her and when I finished there was a surge of peace and I suddenly knew that somehow Our Lady was going to handle this. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13.
After mass there was an introduction to Medjugorje in the parish hall by Fr. Svete but I did not attend because I have already heard the talk several times. Peter Blanchard who owns St. Peter’s books in Emmitsburg asked me to pick up 50 of a certain kind of Brown Scapular that they have in Medjugorje. I found the scapulars in Mirjana’s brothers shop and the cost was $67.00 for the pack of 50. Just as I purchased the scapulars again the peace ran through me almost like electricity just as I was given $13.00 change from the $80.00 I gave him.
Later in the afternoon we attended the rosary and daily apparition of Our Lady of Medjugorje at St. James church. The rosary started at 5 PM and the priest announced that the daily apparition does not take place in the church but in the visionary's home. He also said Our Lady was at the same time present in the church giving each of us Her Motherly Blessing. I had a sudden thought of the similarities between Emmitsburg and Medjugorje and the very instant the priest requested silence because the daily apparition had begun. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13.
After the rosary and adoration was over we left St. James and walked down the street to eat at the Titanic Restaurant. We then went back to Mirjana’s house. We did not climb Apparition Hill tonight because it was raining very hard. I sat down and caught up my daily journal and completed it at 11:13.
Tuesday December 30
We got up the next morning and went down stairs for breakfast. After breakfast Mirjana talked to us and said that if Our Lady allows us to have a difficult trip to Medjugorje it is only because of the additional graces that we are to receive. She then told us that because of our difficult trip that she would personally arrange for our group to be seated right next to her on January 2 when she receives her monthly apparition of Our Lady. Everybody was very happy about this.
After breakfast Lynn Hoffman who organized the trip stopped me and asked if I knew of any problem with Roberta and why she does not do things with the group. I told Lynn about the Apparition Hill episode and why she feels she was intentionally left out. I also knew that Roberta came on a very, very thin budget but I did not mention that part to Lynn.
It was still raining off and on so we took a taxi to St. James for the 10 AM mass. After mass S.C.C. and I just went off on our own and we ended up at the statue of The Risen Christ and Fr. Slavko Barbaric’s grave. We were discussing Roberta’s problem and I told S.C.C. that I believe that the unexpected expenses of staying in a hotel in Vienna wiped out Roberta’s money and that she was broke. I knew that was compounding the problem. I told S.C.C. that I was going to give her a little money to get her through the trip. At the very instant I said that to S.C.C. I was stopped dead in my tracks with the very strong scent of roses. As always it is unmistakable. S.C.C. was also stopped dead in her tracks because she also smelled the roses at the very same instant.
S.C.C. and I stopped at the Titanic and had a coke and then walked through some of the shops. We had already decided that we were going to give Fr. ___ a picture of Our Lady of Medjugorje like the one I got on the last trip that hangs in our living room. None of the shops had any more of them. We walked into this one shop and there it was hanging on the wall. From what I could see it was the last one in all of Medjugorje. I bought the picture and just as I paid for it I was again struck with a sudden sence of peace that caused to glance at my watch. The time was 12:13:33. We then started walking back to the house but it started to rain so we took a taxi and when we returned and got out of the taxi I glanced at my watch and the time was 12:33:13.
We ate lunch at the house and when lunch was over a lady on the trip from California named Alicia Lomas came walking up to me and said “Are you Robert ?” and I said yes. She said I want to thank you for helping David Guinn come on this trip to Medjugorje. She said that he had been a big help to her. She told me that David told her that I loaned him most of the money to come on the trip. Alicia then placed $100.00 in my hands and insisted that I take it because she liked him so much she wanted to help pay for his trip. I resisted taking the money but she insisted. Later in the afternoon I ran into Roberta and she admitted that she was out of money. It instantly made me think back to what I said to S.C.C. in perfect synchronization with the blast of roses. I gave her $100.00.
We then went to the parish hall to hear a talk by Marija who is the visionary who receives the daily apparitions. Shortly after her talk had started Roberta tapped me and gave me a picture of St. Therese and thanked me again for the money. At that very instant I knew that Our Lady had arranged this whole thing and that the Apparition Hill episode that was compounded by no money was over. It was so strong and had worked out so perfectly it caused me to look at my watch and the time was 3:13:33.
When Marija’s talk was over S.C.C. said she was going to St. James to get a seat in the church before it fills up for the 5 PM rosary and apparition. Don Giza and I went across the street to Colombos Restaurant and had a coke. S.C.C. saved seats for us. We talked for a while and when we got up to leave to go back to the church I suddenly felt the surge of peace again. I glanced at my watch and the time was 4:33.
The rosary started at 5 PM and the priest requested silence at the start of the apparition. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13 (5:42:33). The rosary continued after the apparition followed by the 6 PM Pilgrim mass. The strong sense of peace struck again just as we were standing for the gospel. I glanced at my watch and the time was 6:13. After mass the rosary was completed followed my adoration. When everything was over and people started to leave the church the time was 8:13.
Six or seven members of our Group went down the street to the Titanic which is the best restaurant in Medjugorje. The mans name who owns it is Vlado and remembers us each time we come to Medjugorje. The night S.C.C.s father died on our first trip he would not accept any money for our dinner so I gave him the picture I took in Emmitsburg on September 23, 1998 of Our Lady of Fatima and to this day it hangs in the Titanic Restaurant. We ordered our food and it came and we said the blessing again in sync with the sudden sense of peace and well being. I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13.
After we ate we went back to the house and several people including myself wanted to climb Apparition Hill even in the light rain. We invited Roberta to join us and she said she was going to go. The terrain is steep even before you reach the bottom of the hill and by the time we got there Roberta was winded and said she could not go any further. She said she would wait at the bottom for us. Just then several other people from our group was coming down the hill and met us just as we were going up. Roberta joined them and walked back to the house. I instantly knew again that Our Lady had timed this perfectly and everybody was happy. I glanced at my watch just as we started to climb Apparition Hill and the time was 10:33:13. When we reached the statue of Our Lady of Medjugorje we prayed for a little while and walked down on the wet, slick rocks. We got to the bottom and when I took the last step off of the hill I glanced at my wacth and it said XX:XX:13.
Wednesday December 31
Wednesday and Fridays are bread and water fasting days in Medjugorje because Our Lady requested it. This is observed by almost everyone including the locals. It has just become their lifestyle and they consider it a small price to pay for what they have.
When we got up we went downstairs for breakfast and it consisted of nothing but bread and water for those willing to fast and a regular breakfast for anyone who decided not to fast. After breakfast Mirjana was going to come down stairs and talk about the apparitions of The Blessed Virgin Mary to our group. Mirjana came down and started the talk by opening with a prayer (Hail Mary) at the very instant she started I felt that peace again and glanced at my watch and the time was 8:33.
Mirjana talked about the early days of the apparitions and how the then communist government tried everything to stop it. She also described in great detail how she and Ivanka were the first to see Our Lady on June 24, 1981.
After Mirjana finished her talk we were scheduled to take a bus trip to Fr. Jozo’s parish about 20 miles away. We sat in a small room that had room for about 50 people. Fr. Jozo gave us his talk and it was very interesting. After he finished his strong and to the point talk of what Our Lady and Lord expect of us he gave everyone a picture of Our Lady of Medjugorje and a rosary. He then blessed everyone from the front of the room where he was standing.
There was a little boy about 7 or 8 years old with his parents and it was evident that something was physically wrong with him. Fr. Jozo walked over to the little boy and placed both of his hands on the boys head and said a prayer. At the very instant Fr. Jozo finished the prayer the boy let out a yell and fell to the floor like a box of rocks. He was out cold for about a minute or so. Fr. Jozo just smiled and backed away.
I have seen people get prayed over by a priest and collapse and most of the time it seems to only happen to the people who seem to be miracle chasers. Not this time. If ever I witnessed a person actually being slain in the Spirit this was it.
We left Fr. Jozo’s parish and got on the bus to go back to Medjugorje. While we were riding I suddenly had this very peaceful feeling come over me and I started thinking about how everything in both Medjugorje and Emmitsburg are so similar and how things just always work out perfectly. I also had a sudden and peaceful thought of what the outcome of this trip would be although I had no idea what it would be. I knew to look at my watch and the time was 2:13:33.
We arrived back at the house and ate lunch which again consisted of bread and water and afterwards I went upstairs to lay down and try to rest. I was very comfortable and was on the verge of falling asleep when suddenly a thought crashed through my mind that if I go to sleep I will miss the 5 PM rosary and apparition. I opened my eyes and glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:33. I got up and went to St. James with everybody else.
When we arrived at St. James the church was packed full and there were not only no seats but no floor space either. We went to the parish hall ( they call it the yellow building) and were able to get good seats there. Like Emmitsburg they broadcast everything to the parish hall via closed circuit TV.
The rosary started at 5 PM with the daily apparition of Our Lady of Medjugorje at 5:42. Mass followed. After mass there was a Christmas and New Years celebration that consisted of a living nativity and musical production that was superb. When that was over there was adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. Adoration ended at 11:13 and another mass started that was timed so that the Consecration would occur at midnight for New Years. After the Consecration at the very instant the priest elevated the Host I again felt that strong surge of peace. I glanced at my watch and the time was XX:XX:33 (12:02:33). Mass ended and we went back to the house and went to bed.
Thursday January 1, 2004
I slept late and skipped breakfast. S.C.C. woke me up and said our group was going to climb Apparition Hill, she asked if I was going to go. I said yes. I got dressed and as I was catching up to the group I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13. We got to the foot of Apparition Hill and I helped Alicia Lomas up. I was not paying any attention to the time and only glanced at my watch when we reached the top where the statue of Our Lady is and the time was 10:13. Alicia and I started down the hill with the rest of the group and arrived at the bottom at 11:33.
There was a taxi parked at the bottom of the hill with the license plate of 33 and we rode in it to St. James for the 12 noon English speaking mass for the Feast of The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God. After mass we went back to the house and arrived at 1:13.
There was a small birthday party for Lynn, Grace and S.C.C.. Mirjana came and gave S.C.C. a very nice gift. It was a plaque of Jesus, Mary and the Apostles. Mirjana signed it on the back and wrote Medjugorje. We were then told that Mirija would have her annual New Years apparition on Apparition Hill tonight at 10:30.
After the party was over several people wanted to climb Mt. Krisivak (Cross Mountain) which is about 3 times higher that Apparition Hill. S.C.C. said she wanted to go. I took the gift from Mirjana upstairs for S.C.C.. I turned it over and read what Mirjana wrote on the back and was again suddenly filled with peace that almost brought tears. I glanced at my watch and the time was 2:13:33. At that same instant I left to climb Cross Mountain with the group. We took a taxi to the foot of Cross Mountain and we arrived at 2:33
There were about 10 of us who climbed and just before reaching the top another member of our group named Jim wanted us to stop long enough for him to take some pictures of the group. We did and after Jim took his pictures we continued the last 50 feet to the top and arrived at the Cross at 3:33.
While we were up there David Guinn and I were talking and I said to David “Look at this place and the people, this is what happens when The Blessed Virgin Mary comes and people accept the fact that She is here and change their lives accordingly.” David and I talked about how all of the surrounding towns around Medjugorje were devastated by the war but how Medjugorje was spared by the peoples acceptance of Her presence. We also talked about the only 2 bombs landing in Medjugorje during the war. One of them landed in town but was a dud and did not go off and the other one exploded in a field killing a cow, the only casualty in Medjugorje and the people of Medjugorje barbecued it.
I started to pray the rosary and had only gotten a little ways when David came over to me and said we need to start down if we plan on getting a seat in church tonight. When David said that I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:33. I continued the rosary while walking down the mountain. We arrived at the bottom and the same taxi with the license plate of 33 was there. I glanced at my watch as we were all getting in to go back to St. James for the 5 PM rosary. The time was 4:33:13.
We attended the rosary, apparition, mass and adoration at St. James and everything ended and we left the church at 8:13. We then went to eat at the Titanic. S.C.C., C.R.C. and myself then went back to the house to get ready for another climb up Apparition Hill for Mirija’s annual New Years apparition. We had to wait for C.R.C. to finish getting ready and when we walked out the door to go to Apparition Hill I again felt the peace so I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13:33. There were thousands of people climbing Apparition Hill. It was orderly and the river of people climbed at a steady rate. We arrived at the top at 9:33.
Mirija’s apparition started at 10:34 and lasted about 6 to 8 minutes. We were then told that when Our Lady appeared she was dressed in gold and accompanied by 3 angels. They then read the message which went something like this:
Through your actions of Love your hands and heart are extensions of My hands and heart.
Thank you for coming and responding to My call.
This is not a perfect word for word because when they read it to us the PA system quit and we missed a few words. I never saw a written copy.
After the apparition was over there was another river of people walking down the hill. You had to go with the flow. It was impossible to travel any faster or slower because you were simply wedged in the crowd. We arrived at the bottom and stepped off Apparition Hill at 11:33.
We had only taken a few steps when suddenly the unmistakable scent of roses stopped me again in my tracks. S.C.C. also received the roses at the same time I did. C.R.C. did not.
Friday January 2
Last night Mirija’s annual New Years apparition was an unexpected treat. We did not know about it until yesterday. We knew we were scheduled to attend Mirjana’s monthly apparition that occurs on the 2nd of every month.
When I woke up this morning I picked up my watch to see what time it was. I was not at all surprised to see the time was 6:13. We got dressed and went down stairs to eat breakfast. We then walked as a group to the Oasis of Peace which is the place Our Lady appears to Mirjana on the 2nd of each month.
When we arrived at about 6:45 the gate was still locked. There was a large crowd of people already gathered waiting to get in. A man then came up to our group and led us in through another entrance. We were the very first people in and were given the seats closest and with the best view of Mirjana during the apparition. Mirjana told us a few days ago that she was going to do this and she did.
It was fairly cold and the sun was shining brightly. We had a 2 hour wait before the rosary was scheduled to begin at 9 AM. About 8:55 or so Mirjana came in with some priest and members of her family. The rosary started and I took a quick glance at my watch at the very instant The Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to Mirjana. The time was 9:12:56. I instantly lifted my new digital camera and took a picture. The time stamp from the camera on the picture was 4:13. I never set the time on the camera I guess it was done at the factory. The hour was wrong but the minute was right.
Again there was absolutely no difference in watching Mirjana see Our Lady or watching Gianna Sullivan see Our Lady. Everything is the same. I have been up close to both of them when it is happening and there is no difference.
When it was over Mirjana said “Our Lady came with Baby Jesus in Her arms. I did not see His face. Our Lady presented the Baby Jesus to us”. We were then given the message that Our Lady gave and this is a word for word :
Today I am bringing you my Son-your God. Open your heart in order so you can accept Him and bring Him to others. Accept peace and happiness that I am offering to you.
Thank you for having responded to my call.
When everything was over and the very large crowd left we took a side trip to “Mothers Village” Mothers Village is an orphanage that was started by the late Fr. Slavko Barbaric. We arrived there and the time was 1:33. We took the tour and when it was over we left and the time was 2:33.
Later that afternoon David, C.R.C. and several others in the group wanted to climb Cross Mountain again. They did and S.C.C. and I went back to St. James for the 5 PM rosary and daily apparition. We stayed for the 6 PM mass because we had not been this morning.
Later in the evening Don and C.R.C. wanted to climb Apparition Hill again. I told them I would go too but I was going to invite Roberta to go with us. The four of us started hiking towards Apparition Hill and Roberta was lagging behind. I told Don and C.R.C. to go ahead and that I would stay with Roberta and help her up if she needed it. They went ahead and Roberta and I went up at Roberta’s pace which was very slow. Roberta and I arrived at the top and said a few prayers. Roberta was very thankful that she made it up Apparition Hill. It made her trip complete. We left and started climbing down and the time was 11:13.
Saturday January 3
I woke up this morning early because I wanted to attend the 7:30 mass before leaving for home. I picked up my watch to see how much time I had and it said XX:XX:33 (06:40:33). I walked to St. James with 2 members our group. After mass we went back to the house and boarded the bus to catch our plane in Sarajevo.
Our bus left and our guide, Miki Musa started a rosary. The rosary completed at 10:13. We continued riding and then stopped at a restaurant. Later Miki started another rosary and this one ended at 12:13.
We arrived in Sarajevo and boarded our plane at 3:13 and when it landed the flight attendant said “Welcome to Vienna” I glanced at my watch and the time was 4:33. We got checked into our hotel rooms in Vienna and then about 10 of us went down the street to a restaurant to eat. When we returned we sat down stairs for a little while and talked. I then went upstairs to go to bed and the time was 10:33.
Sunday January 4
We got up and ate breakfast and a hotel shuttle took us back to the airport and we arrived at 7:33. We attended the 8 AM mass in the airport chapel. We then went back downstairs and waited for our flight to be called. They eventually called it and we boarded our plane at 10:13. At the very instant the plane took off and the wheels left the ground the TV monitors flashed a display that said “Chan 33 Elapsed Time 00:13”. We arrived in Washington and got off the plane at 3:33 PM.
We took a taxi to Ted’s house which is where our car was parked. We helped carry in Ted’s bags and then we loaded ours in the car. When we left the time on the dash was 5:13 and the odometer was 13.
We drove home and when we pulled in the driveway and the car came to a complete stop I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:33. This surprised me a little because when just the seconds display that usually means there is more to come. It usually means it not over yet.
We walked in the house and S.C.C. called her mother to tell her we were home. S.C.C.’s mom then told us that my mother and sister and nephews had gone to Norfolk because my uncle Frank died suddenly on January 2. He is also my Godfather. This was stunning news and instantly made me think of our first trip to Medjugorje when S.C.C.’s father died while we were there.
Monday January 5
Just like the 1st trip it was straight off the plane to a close family members funeral. We went straight to bed and got up at 4:30 AM to drive to Norfolk for the funeral. We were ready to leave but had to wait for C.R.C. to feed the dog. We pulled out of the driveway at 5:13. We stopped at Zions Cross roads to get gas. C.R.C. pumped it and just at the pump stopped I had a very peaceful feeling just like in Medjugorje or Emmitsburg and I thought about S.C.C.’s fathers death and now the similarities with my uncle Franks death while we were in Medjugorje. It sent a chill up my spine. At that very instant the pump stopped on $13.33 and I glanced at my watch and the time was 6:13.
We had been driving for a while when suddenly I felt the need to pray the rosary for Frank. Just at that instant I glanced up and saw a road sign that said 13 miles to somewhere. I asked S.C.C. and C.R.C. to join me and S.C.C. said she wanted to finish reading something and then she would pray the rosary. When she finished we started and the time on the dash was 7:13. We completed the rosary and the time on the dash was 7:33. I glanced at my watch and it said 7:33:13.
We arrived at my aunt and uncles house and met up with lots of family members there. I got in my cousins car to go to the funeral mass at Holy Trinity and when we pulled out the time was 9:33.
When we arrived at Holy Trinity the casket was still open and I walked up and looked at Frank and at that very instant I again felt a surge of peace. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:33.
Mass started and the priest was Fr. David McGuire. When we stood up for the Gospel the peace hit again. I glanced at my watch and the time was 10:13. The Consecration took place at 10:33.
After mass we went back to my aunt and uncles house and ate lunch. We visited for a while and then we drove back to "hometown" and I knew it was complete when we arrived home and at the very instant the truck came to a complete stop the time was 6:13:13
Jan. 9, 2004