First Friday, Saturday and Public Apparition of Our Lady of Emmitsburg

March 3 - 5, 2006

Fr. John Wang’s response to the fire storm currently taking place here in Emmitsburg over the February 5th message and the letter from then Cardinal Ratzinger confirming the Archdioceses of Baltimore’s authority to handle the matter themselves demonstrates just how narrow the ledge that both sides have to stand on actually is.

Having been here and witnessed these events since 1998 it comes as no surprise to me that God allows things to go to the very brink. I have seen it happen time and time again with the events here in Emmitsburg. Each time a serious controversy takes place more attention is given to the apparitions and more of the truth is revealed. This will continue until all of the truth has been revealed and that will eventually lead to validation.

First Friday March 3

The days leading up to First Friday and Saturday of each month always produce a sequence of events that lead up to an event that I end up writing a paper about. It never fails. I never know what it is going to be. The only thing I really do know is that it gives me more strength to continue because I know I am not the source of these events.

I left the house this morning to go to work, as I was backing out of the driveway I thought about it being First Friday. I thought about going to adoration tonight at St. Joseph’s. It was at that instant I felt the peace and the CD track flashed 13 and the counter simultaneously flash 33.

I drove to St. Joseph’s and attended the 6:30 am mass that Fr. Goff offers during Lent. Mass ended and I left to go to Manassas. During my drive lots of things pertaining to this current controversy in Emmitsburg ran through my mind, including doubts.

Just at the time I arrived at All Saint’s my mind quickly flashed through all of the events I have written about over the years and I knew my doubts were caused by the devil. I thought about how wonderful heaven must be with no controversy. Suddenly I was struck with peace as these thoughts finished rushing through my mind. I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13:33.

I arrived at work and was busy all morning. Later in the day I took a lunch break to go over to All Saint’s and do my LMC study group home work because we have a meeting at Phil C______ ’s house tonight. As I was walking through the SWIFT parking lot towards my car I noticed a rosary hanging from someone’s rearview mirror. It looked like a rosary from Medjugorje. I walked over to the car for a closer look and it was a rosary from Medjugorje.

I drove to All Saint’s and read my chapter for the meeting tonight and went back to work. When I got off for the day I stopped at All Saint’s again so I could pray my daily rosary. I prayed the Sorrowful mysteries and when I finished I glanced at my watch as I walked out of the chapel door and the time was 5:13:00. I got in my car to leave for Emmitsburg and at the instant the car moved the odometer switched to 1.3. I looked up and the CD flashed 13.

While I was driving my cell phone rang. It was Phil C. Phil said he had two questions. First he wanted to know if I could pick up Jim O’Brien on my way through Emmitsburg and bring him to the meeting tonight. Secondly, he wanted to know if I would take his place and find the 5 people needed to lead the rosary at the public apparition of Our Lady on Sunday because he needed to drive Fr. Joseph DeLuca around to the different parishes.

Fr. DeLuca was here to talk about perpetual adoration that begins here at the Missionaries of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary House of Study Chapel on May 15th. I told Phil yes to both questions. We hung up and I suddenly realized that this is how the sequence of events start to unfold with Our Lady and it had just happened. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13.

After driving a few more miles I called Jim to tell him that I would be picking him up when I got back to Emmitsburg and that I would call him again about 1 minute before I arrived so he could be outside waiting. An hour or so later I arrived and I called but when I got to Jim’s he had not yet come outside so I rode around the block, because of this when I got to St. Joseph’s the time on the dash was 7:13.

After making one lap around the block Jim was outside waiting for me. I glanced at my watch as Jim was getting in the car and it said XX:XX:33 (7:14:33). We arrived at Phil’s house and all of the other members were there. We had our meeting and when it was over the topic of discussion turned to the current events in Emmitburg.

It was in interesting conversation among the 7 or 8 of us there. For some reason I told the people there about what happened at the Grotto of Lourdes on October 31, 2000. I also revealed for the very first time the fact that I had a physical healing on that day. I did not include this fact in the original paper I wrote almost 6 years ago because at the time I did not realize it had taken place. This is what I wrote back then in 2000.

I was at the Grotto in Emmitsburg this past October 31 and I would like to describe to you just exactly what I saw and experienced while there that day.

Ted Szymanski and I have been going to Emmitsburg together each week for the past two years. Ted is the grandfather of Christopher. Bray who was healed at Saint Joseph’s back in 1994 of mental retardation as documented in the film Unbridled Mercy. We arrived at the Grotto about 10:30 am. When we arrived I would estimate there were about 75 to 100 people there. As the day progressed I would say the number of people about doubled. John Clote and his film crew from the Mercy Foundation was there and had set up their camera equipment ready to capture on film anything that might happen out of the ordinary. It was a picture perfect day the temperature was about 65, bright sunshine and not a cloud in the sky. Shortly after 3 p.m. Ted walked over to me and asked where the rain was coming from, I did not know what he was talking about, a few seconds later I felt several raindrops hit my face and hands but there was no moisture on me whatsoever. Ted was wearing a black water repellent jacket and it was covered with water droplets on the shoulders, sleeves, front and back. I felt a few more raindrops hitting me but I was not getting wet at all. I heard more people say they felt rain hitting them and they were not getting wet either. I looked up to the sky and there was nothing there except sunshine and blue sky.

Ted’s jacket dried and we had no explanation where the rain could have come from. About an hour later this invisible rain started again and I heard other people say they felt the rain hitting them, I also felt it hit my face and hands and then Ted came running over to me and again he was covered with raindrops all over his face and the black jacket he was wearing was once again covered with raindrops. People who were there were dipping their fingers in the water on Ted’s jacket and blessing themselves with it. Ted was not soaked as if he just climbed out of a swimming pool with his clothes on, it was more as if he walked to his mailbox during a steady rain shower would probably be a better description. While this “rain” was falling I experienced the wonderful scent of roses that so often comes out of nowhere at the Grotto and at Saint Joseph’s.

Now that 6 years have passed I can confidently tell the rest of the story. For years, ever since I was a child I have suffered with frequent nose bleeds. Back in 1974 I had an operation but my nose continued to bleed. I would get a nose bleed at least once every two weeks. It would be common for me to wake up in the middle of the night with a nose bleed. Some of them were severe. Sometimes I would get 2 or 3 nose bleeds a week and sometimes only once or twice a month. Seldom did I go more than a month without a nose bleed.

Back throughout most of 1999 and 2000 George H from "hometown" rode to Emmitsburg with me nearly every Thursday and attended The Thursday Night Prayer Group. He also witnessed what I have described above about Ted getting rained on.

Shortly after Ted got rained on George and I were walking through the Grotto when suddenly my nose began to bleed. George asked me if I was alright and I explained to him that I get nose bleeds all the time and it was nothing to worry about. I told him I would be fine in a few minutes and I went to the rest room to take care of things. That was the last nose bleed I have ever had.

I finished telling this to the men’s study group for the very first time ever and at the instant I finished telling it I felt the peace run through me like electricity. I knew to glance at my watch and the time was 9:33.

It was not long after this Jim and I left. As I was driving Jim back to his apartment I asked him if he would like to stop at St. Joseph’s with me for First Friday adoration. Jim said he would like to stop. We arrived at St. Joseph’s and I glanced at my watch as we walked in the door and it said XX:XX:33.

The Blessed Sacrament was exposed and the sign up sheet was on a table at the back of the church. That is when I noticed that I was scheduled for the 3 to 4 am time slot. This was news to me. Nobody had ever told me that I was scheduled to provide coverage. If Jim and I had not stopped I would have never known until it was to late. Because of this I knew I needed to go home and get some sleep. I left and looked at my watch as I walked out the door and the time was 10:13.

While driving home I started thinking about this and suddenly realized it was just another component of what I experience and it was the Holy Spirit who arranged tonight’s events. I glanced at my watch as I realized this and it said XX:XX:33.

First Saturday March 4

I arrived home and set the alarm clock for 2:45 am. I told S.C.C. that I needed to be back at St. Joseph’s at 3 o’clock. I then went straight to sleep. The clock went off and I drove back to St. Joseph’s. I glanced at my watch as I walked in the door and it said XX:XX:33.

I entered my pew and prayed before the Blessed Sacrament and suddenly during that time I felt like it was now time to pray the rosary. I glanced at my watch and the time was 3:13. I prayed the Sorrowful mysteries. I offered the rosary for the problems currently being worked out in Emmitsburg. After finishing the rosary I continued to pray before the Blessed Sacrament until my 4 am replacement arrived. I glanced at my watch as I was leaving and it said XX:XX:13. I drove home and pulled in my driveway and the time was 4:13.

I went straight back to bed and did not get up until time to go to 8 am mass at St. Mary’s. Mike and Gianna Sullivan were at mass and when Fr. M____ elevated the host I had the sudden urge to pray for Gianna and Mike. It was so strong I glanced over at them and could see their suffering in each of their faces. I then glanced at my watch because this was such a strong and unexpected event. It said XX:XX:13. A few minutes later I received Holy Communion and the time was 8:33.

Mass ended and we had the monthly LMC meeting. The main topic of discussion was the perpetual adoration getting ready to take place at the House of Studies next door to St. Mary’s. The meeting ended and I got in my car to leave. When I started it the CD flashed 33 and I pulled out of the parking lot and the time was 10:33.

I then drove to St. Peter’s Book store. While I was there a friend of Fr. John Wang came in. His name was Steve Smith. I needed to line up 5 people to lead the decades of the rosary tomorrow so I offered him the 4th decade. (That is the one Our Lady usually comes in) After Steve accepted I knew to glance at my watch and it said XX:XX:13.

Throughout the day I distributed all of the decades for tomorrow except #2. Later in the day I stopped at St. Joseph’s to go to confession. I glanced at my watch as I walked in the church and again it said XX:XX:33. I had a few minutes before confessions started so I prayed another rosary. When I completed the rosary I went to confession. I then left and just as I pulled out of the parking lot I was met by another car with the license plate of 13.

Later in the evening I sat down to complete the February 18, 2006 paper and finished it at 8:33. I then put all of the newspaper articles and Fr. Wang’s response together and finished that at 9:13.

Public Apparition of Our Lady

Sunday March 5, 2006

S.C.C., C.R.C. and myself went to the 8 am mass at St. Mary’s this morning. Fr. Joseph DeLuca was here to discuss perpetual adoration. As Fr. Mike Messaro introduced him I felt the peace. I glanced down at my watch and the time was 8:13.

Fr. DeLuca gave a good talk on the importance and benefits of perpetual adoration. After mass there was coffee and doughnuts in the parish hall. C.R.C. said he would like to attend. We had coffee and doughnuts and S.C.C. worked the Welcome Table. C.R.C. and I then left and as we walked out of the door I felt the peace. I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13.

C.R.C. and I drove home and he got ready for work (bussing tables) at Ski Liberty. While he was getting ready I checked my email and I had received an email from Gianna regarding something about Mission of Mercy. I glanced at my watch as I received this email and the time was 9:33.

I then dropped C.R.C. off at Ski Liberty and later I sat down and caught up all of my notes from my digital voice recorder and put them in my notebook. When I finished I glanced at my watch and the time was 12:13.

A little later I rode into town to go to the ATM machine and get some cash. I then rode back to St. Joseph’s and pray the rosary while I waited for Ray Sanders to arrive. I glanced at my watch as I walked in the church and it said XX:XX:33.

I did not stay because it looked like they were setting up for a baptism. I went back out to my car and started to pray the Glorious mysteries of the rosary. Ray showed up and joined me in the rosary in the 3rd decade. We finished the rosary together and I glanced at my watch as I kissed the crucifix and the time was 1:33:13.

Ray and I then rode back out to my house because we were supposed to pick up S.C.C. and then go pick up Gwen Lamb to go to the apparition of Our Lady. I was surprised to see that S.C.C. had already left to go pick up Gwen. I called her and she said she would just meet us at the Lynfield Event Complex, where the apparition takes place. I changed my clothes and Ray and I left to go to the apparition and we arrived there at 2:33. Just as I shut the car off the CD flashed 13.

The first thing I noticed when we arrived was the large number of cars in the parking lot. We carried the large picture of Our Lady of Emmitsburg that I inherited from Sr. Genevieve Walsh and set it up like always. I still needed to find a person to lead the 2nd decade of the rosary so I offered to Vicki K who has been attending the apparitions for years.

The prayer group began and it was my job to stand up front and pass the microphone back and forth from each person who led to rosary to Mike Sullivan who read the rosary meditations between each decade. Our Lady appeared to Gianna during the 4th decade while Fr. John Wang’s friend, Steve was leading the rosary. Our Lady appeared at 3:50 and the apparition ended at 3:57.

The Lynfield Event Complex was packed. It was the most people I have ever seen at the apparition since it took place at St. Joseph’s. I would estimate it to be around 400 people. After the rosary ended Jim O’Brien and Sherry Masser led the Chaplet of Divine Mercy. When everything was over I felt very honored to have been the one to line up the 5 people for the rosary. I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:13.

Ray and I then left and as we pulled out of the Lynfield parking lot the time on the dash was 5:13. We arrived back in Emmitsburg and I dropped Ray off. I then stopped at St. Joseph’s to say a prayer of thanks and arrived there at 5:33.

R_____ C___

March 11, 2006

8:33 Pm