DAILY CATHOLIC     FRI-SAT-SUN     November 5-7, 1999     vol. 10, no. 210


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    "Getting to the Heart of the Matter" is what Sister Mary Lucy Astuto pinpoints in every issue when she takes a common sense approach to living our faith with her practical columns.

    This weekend Sister begins to relate a story from a dear friend who experienced conversion through God's providence and His Blessed Mother's secret weapon - the Rosary. It all began in Medjugorje after her dear friend Kathy, like so many other millions, had read about the "Miracle of Medjugorje" from Wayne Weible and heard the call of Our Lady to come to her special Oasis of Peace in then Yugoslavia back in 1988. Sister writes from Kathy's point of view in sharing how Kathy's heart was moved to pray with the heart for that is truly the crux in getting to the heart of the matter as Sister Lucy shows in the first of a multiple part entitled simply Kathy's Rosary Story part one.

    Her column provides effective, vital insights into our faith and ways of fulfilling God's Will every day in every way. You can visit Sr. Lucy at her web site for Heart of Mary Ministry at http://www .heartofmaryministry. com or you can reach her at Srmarylucy @aol.com by e-mail.


        After a brief respite last week to highlight the evils of Halloween, I continue this week with Kathy's story which I began two weeks ago. Kathy wanted me to tell you that if you would like to have a copy of her unedited story, you can e-mail her at KHestekin@aol.com Her story is not to be reproduced for profit, however.

          I was baptized at16. I believed firmly in God, but as time passed, I began living a life of parties and pleasures. Yet none of it made me happy - really. So when Our Lady came into my life, I was ready for the "potter's hands." As I had mentioned, my friend returned from Medjugorje with a rosary for me. I looked at him as if he were nuts and asked: "What do you want me to do with this?"

          He replied that I should learn to pray the Rosary.

          I thanked him for the "cute" little gift, took the Rosary home and hung it on a nail on the wall.

          My friend continued with his stories from Medjugorje. People saw the sun spin, Rosaries turned gold, etc. I wondered why people needed these things.

          Soon it was Christmas. My house was full of people. For some reason I went into the bedroom. It was dark but the light from the kitchen shone on the wall where the Rosary hung. I went over to look at it. To my astonishment, it had turned gold. I began to feel real excitement. Maybe, just maybe "this Lady" was trying to get my attention.

          Secretly, I began to learn to pray the Rosary.

          By May of 1989 I was en route with my friend to a Marian Conference at Notre Dame, Indiana. We were to meet some people there, but we had no idea how this was to come about as 10,000 people were expected to be at the Conference. All of a sudden, on the highway, they were there - in the lane right next to us. This "Lady" now had my full attention.

          Christmas 1989. I was on my way to Medjugorje, cold and all. The trip there took a total of 27 hours, by bus, plane, plane, plane and bus, which included a four hour layover in the Belgrade airport. I had a terrible fear of flying, but when I got on the first airplane, suddenly I had no fear. It was all gone.

          When we got off the final plane in Dobrovnik, the sun was setting. I looked at it and sure enough, I saw it spinning and pulsating just like I had heard it would. There was a general peace all around, if you allowed it, and as it was Christmas, the villagers were extremely joyful.

          One of the things that impressed me the most, was the generosity of the people. At the home where we were staying, the people were just ordinary folk with simple possessions. But they treated us with great generosity with what they had.

          In Tihaljina, I lingered beside a very poignant statue of the scourged Jesus. A man, priest, dressed in a brown robe, like a monk, came up behind me. He touched my shoulder and when I turned to look at him, he wished me a very happy Christmas. His smile was bright and beautiful, his face radiant with love and friendship. I came to realize later that the man was Father Jozo. Oh, how privileged I was!


    How privileged? We'll see next week when we continue with the third part of Kathy's story. Until then, God bless you!

November 5-7, 1999       volume 10, no. 210


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