Sunday October 1, 2006
I find it amazing but not surprising that Dr. Thomas Petrisko has returned to Emmitsburg to give support to the apparitions of Our Lady of Emmitsburg. I think back to the night of July 2nd and the sequence of events that took place that night over at Mary and Peter Blanchard’s house.
I knew I was witnessing something special that night because of how every little thing fell right into place in the same pattern I have been describing for years. Tom Petrisko spoke today after the apparition of Our Lady of Emmitsburg at the Lynfield Event Complex to a crowd of more than 600 people. The day was full of unexpected events that resulted in this paper.
St. Therese, The Little Flower is very special to me. It was her intercession that resulted in the good outcome when C.R.C. was beat up. It was also her intercession that resulted in my return to God and ending up here in Emmitsburg at the apparitions of Our Lady. Her feast is not celebrated this year because it falls on a Sunday but she was still at the front of my mind the entire day which went like this:
I woke up this morning and the first thing that ran through my mind was the fact that today is the monthly public apparition of Our Lady of Emmitsburg. I then thought about it being the feast of St. Therese. I then thought about it being a very busy day because in addition to everything else I needed to drive to Leesburg because I promised to pick up Ted Szymanski and bring him to the public apparition today. As all of these things ran through my mind I looked over at the clock next to the bed and the time was 6:13.
Later in the morning S.C.C. and I went to the 8 AM mass at St. Mary’s. C.R.C. went to the 10:30 because he had an altar server meeting. Deacon Peter Zorjan delivered the gospel which was the one about plucking out your eye. For some reason I felt a sudden feeling of peace at the conclusion of the gospel despite it being one of my least favorite gospel readings. As we sat down I glanced at my watch and the time was 8:13.
Mass ended and S.C.C. and I rode home. We had breakfast and then S.C.C. left to drive C.R.C. to church for his meeting and mass. I sat down to write the September 12th paper and completed it at 10:13.
Shortly after I completed writing that paper the phone rang and it was my sister Barbara. She said she and my mother were going to ride up for today’s apparition. We hung up and I suddenly remembered that I was supposed to drive to Leesburg to pick up Ted. I called my sister back and asked if she could pick him up at Wal Mart in Leesburg. She said yes and I called Ted to let him know.
I then sat back down at my computer and started writing the September 23rd paper. I got to a good breaking point and stopped so I could get ready to go to today’s apparition. It was then I noticed the time was 12:13. I finished getting ready and never paid any attention to the time. S.C.C. and C.R.C. said they would meet me there. I got in the car to leave and as I started it the time on the dash was the last fraction of a second of 12:33.
I needed to stop at St. Peters Books and on the way I stopped at St. Joseph’s. At the instant I arrived I met a car with the license plate of 33. I did not go in because the noon mass was still in progress. I said a few prayers and instantly as I left I met another car with the license plate of 33.
I drove down the street to St. Peter’s and had a coke and talked to Peter. A few minutes later Dr. Thomas Petrisko arrived. He instantly remembered me from the night we met back on July 2nd. He remembered me telling him about how I used to hunt for Civil War relics. He asked me if there was any chance I could take him and his son out metal detecting. I said yes and for some reason I instantly felt the peace hit me. I glanced at my watch and the time was 1:13:33.
After we finished talking I left to go to the Lynfield Event Complex. I needed to be there a little early to set up the Mission of Mercy table. I arrived and just as I was pulling in the parking lot I looked in my rearview mirror and the car behind me was also pulling in and it had the license plate of 33.
While I was carrying in Sr. Genevieve’s picture of Our Lady of Emmitsburg I had a strong, sudden thought about how I was originally going to drive to Leesburg to pick up Ted. I thought about how surprised I was when my sister called saying she and mom were coming. I thought about how well it worked out that they could pick up Ted. All this ran through my mind so fast I knew to glance at my watch and it said XX:XX:13.
S.C.C. and C.R.C. arrived and both of them helped run the table that was offering Tom Petrisko’s books. The Lynfield was packed and today was the first time both rooms had to be opened because of the large crowd. Today was also the first time a closed circuit TV was used to broadcast the apparition into the 2nd room so the overflow crowd could witness the apparition.
Shortly after 3 PM Mike Sullivan asked people to take their seats because the prayer group was going to begin shortly. As he said this I glanced at my watch and it said XX:XX:33. After a few more minutes Mike started making this months announcements. During his announcements he asked for prayers for Fr. Vincent O’Malley who had just returned to St. Joseph’s after several months of near death illness.
He said that he just received word that today, shortly after the noon mass Fr. O’Malley was stricken ill again and was taken to Gettysburg Hospital. When Mike said this it came as a complete surprise. I glanced at my watch and the time was 3:13. Mike led the group in prayer and then continued with the announcements. There were a lot of them. After the announcements Mike started the rosary. I looked at my watch and the time was 3:33.
I had my digital voice recorder in my pocket so for some reason I turned it on. I had never done this before. I was not even sure that it would record from my pocket. I wanted to try to record Our Lady’s message as She gave it to Gianna. I turned it on and forgot about it.
Our Lady came during the 4th decade of the rosary and the time was 3:55. I had already moved into the overflow room where the projection TV was so I would see how well it worked. A few seconds after Our Lady appeared to Gianna flood lights were shined on her face. The lights were very, very bright. Both Mike Sullivan and Shirley Dillon were next to Gianna. Both of them had to squint and shield their eyes from the light. Gianna was seeing Our Lady and had no reaction the high intensity light whatsoever.
The apparition ended about 7 or 8 minutes later and the rosary was completed. The Chaplet of Divine Mercy followed along with a few other prayers. Tom Petrisko was then introduced and he spoke for about the next 25 or 30 minutes. The title of his talk was the Collision of Our Two Worlds. It was excellent. Mike then introduced a priest and deacon who brought a full bus load of people down from Pittsburg. Both the priest and deacon gave a blessing to the crowd followed by a final blessing by Fr. Simon Ingler. I glanced at my watch as the prayer group ended and the time was 5:13.
S.C.C. was still working at the book table in the lobby and I helped clean up afterwards. Mike Sullivan then came up to me and gave me the master recording of Fr. Al Pehrsson’s testimony that he just received. He asked if I could make copies on my computer and I said yes. I then just happened to mention that I recorded the entire prayer group on my digital voice recorder today. I did not even know why I mentioned it but I did. We finished cleaning up and I looked at my watch and the time was now 5:33.
My mother and sister wanted to go get something to eat before they drove back to "hometown". We waited for S.C.C. to finish and then we drove to Cozy’s for dinner. We arrived and I glanced at my watch and the time was 6:33.
We ate and had a very nice time. It was good seeing mom and Barbara looking so good. After we finished eating they left to go back to "hometown" and drop Ted off at Wal Mart in Leesburg.
I then left and stopped at St. Joseph’s on my way home. I arrived and the feeling of peace was very strong. I walked up and kissed the corner of the church and glanced at my watch and the time was 8:13:00. I returned to my car and prayed another rosary in thanks for Our Lady being here. I finished and walked back and kissed the corner of the church again. I looked at my watch and the time was now 8:33.
This might sound strange but sometimes I feel like I am being asked to do this, so I do it and give thanks.
I drove home and a little while later my phone rang. It was Mike Sullivan. He wanted to tell me what he wanted the label to say on Fr. Al’s testimony CD. Mike then said that there was a malfunction on the tape recorder that he uses to record Our Lady’s messages. He said that he missed the first 2 or 3 sentences before he got the recorder going. He said he remembered that I mentioned that I recorded it. He asked if I could write down the first several sentences and get them to him. I said yes.
I thought about having never recorded the message before and that fact that the day it was needed was the day I did it. We hung up and I glanced at my watch and the time was 9:13:00.R_____ C___
October 5, 2006