Sunday, June 15, 2008

Our Lady of Siluva IV

Blind man regains his sight
In many apparitions of the Blessed Mother there is usually a picture or statue associated with the event. Our Lady of Siluva is not an exception. A blind man, more than 100 years old, lived in a nearby village. The stories of the apparitions reached him and he recalled a night, some eighty years before, when he helped Father Holubka bury an ironclad chest filled with church treasures beside a large rock. The villagers led him to the field of the apparitions to see if he could help locate the place where the treasures were buried. No sooner had he reached the spot, then his sight was miraculously restored. Falling to his knees with joy and gratitude, he pointed to the exact spot where the chest had been buried.
Villagers find the buried treasure
The ironclad chest was dug out of the ground and when it was opened, there – perfectly preserved – was the large painting of the Madonna and Child, several gold chalices, vestments, church deeds, and other documents. The painting was enshrined permanently in the Basilica of the Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary and is venerated to this day as the Miraculous Image of Siluva.
Miracles continue
Over the years, many miracles have been recorded and the shrine has experienced numerous changes and larger churches had to be built to accommodate the pilgrims. Devotion to Our Lady of Siluva was growing until World War II brought about the destruction of freedom in Lithuania.
Since then, this world has seen many changes. We find ourselves surrounded by moral decay and many have lost their way. Today, Our Lady of Siluva is our most powerful intercessor before Almighty God.
She once brought Lithuania back to the Church, so let us pray that . . .
“ moved by your tears, may we as our forefathers did, revive the spirit of adoration of your Son in our hearts, strengthen the tottering structure of the shrine that is the family, bring back your wandering children and forgive the sins of our nation.
“ Our Lady of Siluva, intercede for your wandering children . . . bring them home to Jesus.”

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