Looking through old files is always interesting.
For example, there was a trip deep in Ukraine, during research for The Final Hour, and a photograph with a seer, Maria Kizyn, at a place called Hrushiw (along with my driver, Roman). (I’m showing them the book done with Josyp Terelya, Witness, about the apparitions in Ukraine).
Here Maria is at the apparition site, with another who had witnessed the remarkable events at Hrushiw, quite a bit south of Kiev (the Virgin appeared on a balcony of this small church, as Communism miraculously fell).
Here’s another seer I met in poor Ukraine, at the surprisingly powerful site of Zarvanystya. (I later mysteriously ran into this same woman at a church in Kiev — more than a hundred miles away, in a nation where cars at the time were a rarity; not even highway patrolmen had them — instead, having to hide behind trees roadside):
Meeting a key seer at Kibeho, Rwanda, Anathalie Mukamazimpaka, nine years ago this month:
How can one forget a visit to the Church-approved site of Betania (1991)? There, an incredible miracle of the sun was seen (Our Lady formed in rays in a detailed likeness to the Miraculous Medal; I witnessed it), and there was an initial meeting with Maria Esperanza, her husband Geo, and their truly wonderful family (here is a case where “awesome” is not a cliche).
A statue there:
This was in Maria Esperanza’s house:
At Esperanza’s house during the first week of meetings:
Call it memory lane.
There was the first time I met the Medjugorje seer Vicka Ivankovic (and gave her a book called Prayer of the Warrior). She is at the level of an Esperanza. No one could meet her and leave with doubt. (The doubters do their doubting from perches afar.)
I met all the seers. Below, a young Jakov Colo during the war. I went not with pilgrims but as a journalist, taking a three-hour taxi from an airport through various stern military checkpoints and listening at night at seer Ivanka Ivankovic’s house to mortar blasts in nearby Mostar (she and her husband had taped their rattling windows). At one point, I stood alone in St. James: not another soul in a church that is often too packed during daily Masses to even squeeze into.
That’s Ivanka below, with her husband. Note their baby — staring, it seems, at what her mother is seeing! (Ivanka was so humble she wanted to carry my suitcase, though when I brought up the “secrets,” she quickly waved that conversation away!).
So long ago. This was all the very early 1990s. Here’s an alleged apparition site at Oliveto Citra in Italy:
How can I forget the woman who came back from Medjugorje and sent me the photograph, from Apparition Hill, that you see below. This was long before photoshop! And she isn’t the type to hoax. There were other photos taken from the very same spot moments before, and nothing was in the sky, which was bright at the time. The photograph was taken in the afternoon. When developed, however, it looked like night, no one was visible (she was taking photos of those she was with), and the letters were just there in the photograph. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen a more impressive photo from there.
The sky does so much there; the sun does so much there. I once witnessed a star split into three smaller stars (white, blue, and red), then squiggle back together, then separate again, and so forth for fifteen minutes — with more than a dozen other pilgrims, looking also through a pair of binoculars. Seeing is believing. And believing is seeing.
Was this really a miraculous photo? An evangelical sent it to me in the late 1980s, supposedly the Throne Room of God. I remain skeptical. It looks like a drawing or painting. But who am I?
We know God resides, subtly, in the sky:
Chatting with Mother Angelica after an appearance on her show: