Skip to comments.Our Lady’s Gentle Call to Peace
Posted on 04/07/2008 3:06:20 PM PDT by annalex
Our Ladys Gentle Call to Peace
By Joan Tussing
"Have you been caught in the traps of lifes difficulties? You must not look at your own situation or the trap that holds you. Look at the Lord. Let God act and take care of you. Cast your burdens on the Lord who will nourish you. With your mind at peace; await whatever happens. Let the Divine Will be enough for you since it is always very good. As God directed St. Catherine of Siena, Think of me and I will think of you."
Peace of Mind: Spiritual Counsel from St. Francis De Sales, audio cassette. 1
Last year, Francka Povsic, my special friend and co-leader of our prayer group gave me a copy of the above inspirational audio cassette. These words from St. Francis De Sales powerfully describe the Truth that I have learned about Gods infinite love for me. Our Lady gently called me to peace through reported messages of Mary and eventually to the Roman Catholic Church.
Using a Catholic phrase, I grew up as a "cradle Lutheran." My parents raised me in a loving Lutheran home. In quiet humility, my parents have always modeled devotion to family, daily prayers, church involvement and service to others. Up through my teenage years, I was much more spiritual than most of my peers. When I was confirmed in ninth grade, I wanted to become a missionary. I even chose to go to Capital University because it was a Lutheran college. But during college in the 1970s, I found myself pulled away into a secular college lifestyle. Friendships, parties and career became my attachments more so than God did.
Once married, my husband Doug and I became regularly attending members of the Lutheran church; however, I was attached to perfection, work and pleasing my family and everyone else. As our two children grew, we both became very active in our Lutheran parish. As I look back, I realize that church became another place for achievement at the expense of my own spiritual development and personal relationship with Jesus. I was so busy "doing" things for the church that there was no room for prayer and quiet time with God.
Five years ago at the age of 38, the years of attachment to the world had paid their toll. I was suffering from anxiety, depression and early menopause. Although I was not addicted to alcohol, I used alcohol to mask my pain. As a high school guidance counselor, I felt constantly bombarded by the evil effects of the world on our youth: materialism, drugs, teen pregnancy, abortion, suicide and spiritual starvation. Given the overwhelming nature of these problems, I felt helpless to make a difference.
From the depths of my agony, I cried out to Jesus for help. Much to my surprise, Jesus sent me his Blessed Mother. This was particularly surprising because as a Lutheran, I was taught to consider Mary only at Christmas. But when we truly relinquish our worldly attachments and open ourselves to Gods Will, He responds to us in ways far beyond our human expectations. He reached me through His Blessed Mother, and eventually gave me the gift of the Roman Catholic Church.
This all began when a close Catholic friend told me about her pilgrimage to Medjugorje.** It had helped her deal with her marriage to a severe alcoholic. While reading a great book about Marian Apparitions, my spiritual journey moved into high gear. I did not experience miracles in the dramatic sense; I had no visions, apparitions or obvious supernatural experiences. Instead I became profoundly aware of Jesus, Our Lady, the angels and saints who were my heavenly team helping me to search for peace and happiness. Focusing on Our Ladys simple messages of peace, prayer, conversion, faith, fasting and penance, I now felt my prayers could make a difference to help the world.
As I began to live these message of Mary, the right people and situations be came available to me through Jesus and the intercession of the Blessed Mother. For example, I found a local Catholic book store that was a rich source of information about Mary and the Catholic Church. The owners, who have made many pilgrimages to apparition sites, certainly gave me more information and support than I could have ever dreamed!! They invited me to their prayer group and consequently, I became friends with many incredible people who were in love with Jesus, Our Lady and the Catholic Church. I continued to attend their prayer group, and learned about Theotokos, a Marian center in Toledo, attending many of its sponsored events.
Many converts speak of the Virgin Mary as the last hurdle to Catholicism. The opposite was true for me. Through these messages of Mary, I quickly grew to love the Blessed Mother and thirsted to find out more about her. After attending the Chicago Marian Conference in 1993, I immersed myself in books, tapes and conferences about the Blessed Mother. I began fasting once a week and praying the Rosary. I was drawn to share my love for Our Lady and my calling to live her messages by beginning a Rosary prayer group in Bowling Green, Ohio.
Our group began with eight Lutheran women who clumsily learned to pray the Rosary together. Heaven must have been chuckling over our awkward but sincere attempts! I believe Our Lady sent Francka Povsic into my life to help us. Francka had led a life of deep devotion to the Rosary and Our Lady since she was a little girl in her native land of Slovenia. She provided humble and profound spiritual guidance that touched our hearts and helped us persevere. Now in its fourth year, our prayer group is still ecumenical with Lutheran, Methodists and Catholic women praying together with Our Lady.
At the Chicago Marian Conference in 1993, the speakers emphasized the importance of visiting Jesus in the adoration chapel. Visit Jesuswhat were they talking about?! As a Lutheran, I knew that Jesus was always with us but these people talked about Jesus as if he was in the same room!
Once I learned the significance of Eucharistic adoration, I took the brave step of seeking out the adoration chapel at St. Aloysius Church in Bowling Green, Ohio. Through weekly visits with Jesus and simply resting in His presence, Jesus led me through the difficult steps of letting go of my need to control every situation and replaced them with His Divine Will and Guidance. In that quiet chapel, Jesus took me by the hand and led me to a profound healing of the mind and body, and a conversion of my heart. As I look back, I realize that it was in that adoration chapel that Jesus led me to the Catholic Church.
Only another convert can truly understand the terror I felt once I realized that Jesus was calling me into the Catholic Church! Mine was not the typical conversion of a wife following her husband who was already in the Church. Instead, I was embarking on a journey alone. My entire family including my husband, children and parents were strong Lutherans and planned to stay that way. They thought I had lost my senses with my constant talk about the Blessed Mother. When I finally got up the courage to tell them about my decision to become Catholic, I am sure that they felt betrayed and forsaken.
Although this was quite painful for all of us, the more I prayed about my decision, my sense of peace grew stronger that it was the right choice. I was blessed with a sign that confirmed my decision. I was rereading the book about Marian apparitions during the flight home from a visit with my friend who first introduced me to Mary. I read again about several of the authors requests for roses from Our Lady and St. Therese of Lisieux as confirmation of decisions he was trying to make. I humbly prayed to Jesus and Our Lady that I would greatly appreciate a sign confirming that I should join the Catholic Church. I set my book down to stretch my legs. When I came back, a man behind me who had noticed my book tapped me on the shoulder and asked me about my interest in Marian apparitions. After a brief conversation, he handed me a holy card of St. Therese of Lisieux surrounded by roses! That day, I cried tears of joy and thanksgiving to my Lord who was affirming my decision through a special gift of confirmation.
Why did I decide to join the Catholic Church? I can state the reason in three words: The Holy Eucharist. I had always treasured Holy Communion which is considered the True Presence of Christ in the Lutheran Church; however unlike Catholics, Lutherans do not focus their worship and church life around the Eucharist. I was drawn to the Catholic Mass that culminates in the celebration of the Eucharist. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, Transubstantiation, and an emphasis on the contemplation of our Lords passion made sense to me. In addition, I realized that I had been missing out on the support of the Churchs Saints throughout the ages. Most of all, I needed to belong to the Church that had introduced me to my heavenly Mother.
I joined the Roman Catholic Church on the Easter Vigil of 1995. My special friend, Francka Povsic served as my sponsor. Not surprisingly, I chose St. Therese of Lisieux as my patron saint. My husband Doug, my children, and family friends supported me by attending the Easter Vigil. Although my family found all of this very difficult to understand, they accepted my choice.
Since my confirmation day, I have never regretted my decision. Beyond my wildest dreams, the Lord has showered me with boundless graces, friendships, knowledge of the Truth, peace, consolation and spiritual growth. I am deeply grateful to the many pastors, priests, religious and lay people who have provided spiritual direction before and since my entry into the Church.Retreat houses including the Abbey of Gethsemane have provided ongoing places of prayer and solitude. Making my Consecration to Our Lord and Our Lady, according to the teaching of St. Louis DeMonfort, drew me into very special friendships with other women in my parish.
This past March 1997, I received the special grace to go on a pilgrimage to Medjugorje, yet another example of Gods quiet but concrete miracles in my life. I did not experience supernatural signs or wonders, but rather a pilgrimage of fulfillment. I came home with an incredible sense of gratitude to God for all that He had given me. I now realize that the fruits of Marys messages are to be found in everyday life.
I struggle like most Catholics to find time to pray the Rosary and spend time with Jesus; however, I increasingly look to Jesus, Our Lady, the Holy Spirit, the angels and Saints for help and guidance. When I start getting too emotionally attached to this world, I consciously try to let go and give my cares to Jesus. I ask for discernment and seek His will instead.
I continue to attend both the Lutheran and Catholic services. My family and I attend the Lutheran Church together and I attend the Catholic Church alone. Doug has demonstrated incredible love for me in accepting my spiritual journey even though it must be frustrating and painful for him. I agonize about how to unify our familys spiritual life, and I constantly pray for the Holy Spirits help and guidance.
In September 1997, my special friend, Francka passed on into Heaven. After suffering from leukemia for over six years, Francka is now in joyful union with Jesus and Our Lady. Just weeks before she died, Francka gave me a special message: "I know one thingI trust in the Lord completely. We can adore and honor him in the best way possible. I am not doing too well physically, but it will be O.K., little by little." This statement captured her life of humble obedience to the Lord, and the qualities that drew me into the Catholic Church. This was Franckas way. Like St. Therese of Lisieux, Francka lovingly did the ordinary things of life in an extraordinary way. It is not surprising that Francka died on September 8, the Feast of the Birth of our Lady.
Particularly when her suffering was severe, Francka would imagine herself at the foot of the cross, gazing into the eyes of Jesus. Francka has been a beautiful model to all of us who had the honor of knowing her.
As I looked out over those assembled in the funeral home to pray the Rosary with Franckas family, I felt a special spiritual bond with my fellow prayer group members. I sensed that Francka, Jesus and Our Lady were smiling down from heaven on all present including our ecumenicalprayer group, made up of Lutheran, Methodist and Catholic women who have responded to our Ladys call to pray for peace, conversion and love for each other.
Thank you, Jesus for hearing my cries for help and sending me your Mother!
Happy Easter. Christ is risen!
Anti-Catholicism, Hypocrisy and Double Standards
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part I: Darkness
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part II: Doubts
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part III: Tradition and Church
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part IV: Crucifix and Altar
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part V: The Catholics and the Pope
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part VI: The Biblical Reality
His Open Arms Welcomed Me
Catholic Conversion Stories & Resources
My Personal Conversion Story
My (Imminent) Reception into the Roman Catholic Church
Catholics Come Home
My Journey of Faith
LOGIC AND THE FOUNDATIONS OF PROTESTANTISM
"What is Truth?" An Examination of Sola Scriptura
"Have you not read?" The Authority behind Biblical Interpretation
The Crisis of Authority in the Reformation
Our Journey Home
You really need to stop posting these. They keep pulling at my heartstrings...
I’ll get something masculine-analytical before long...
Wow, sounds like Hinduism. Just focus and everything will become clear.
I suggest you concentrate on Christianity, hard as it seems. Mind wanders, I know.
Focus on Christianity?
Then what’s all this focus on
Oh, I know—it’s the confuse the poor Prottys strategy for world domination! LOL.
ROTFL! About a year ago, a Catholic on FR had accused all Protestants on FR of (and I quote) "collectively and in unified front busying themselves with what the Catholics think and do."
Well, the gig's up, boys! Our secret's out! We might as well 'fess up and admit that the three of us, and all of our Protestant brethren, coordinate our postings on a daily basis as part of Global Protestant Conspiracy against the Catholic Church. Make sure to synchronize your watches and eat your computer monitors after you read this posting, and you'll find the microfilm in the salt shaker!
So back to Harley's earlier point - if this conspiratorial "busying ourselves" isn't "focus", I don't know what is!
I should have stated it and punctuated it better . . .
Oh, I knowits the RC edifice ordered “confuse-the-poor-Prottys” strategy for world domination! LOL.
But given the Alice-in-Wonderland-school-of-Rubberized-theology . . .
who can keep score! ?
Thanks for clowning. Any substantive comments about the content of the thread are welcome.
I asked a substantive question, IIRC.
Based on solid congruent evidence.
I don’t recall it being touched.
The purported ‘Lady’ [more likely a technological hoax or other dimensional entity]’s PEACE PLAN
reads like but a variat of the NEW AGE globalist peace plan.
No one else finds that odd?
I’ll try and find the key sentences in Safari and post them next. Gotta get out of IE.
No, I don’t think various peace plans to be similar is odd.
If you want substantive response from certain circles, perhaps you’d better post some earnest and breathless reports about UFOs and Greys tampering with the radio settings in your car.
Welllllll, the world ruler Scripture says
WAGE WAR WITH PEACE.
I don’t find that comforting, in the least. Nor anyting I’d want ANY AUTHENTIC CHRISTIAN TO HAVE ANY PART IN.
having trouble getting Safari to open. Redownloading.
That’s a little late on the draw compared to usual.
I hope there are no health concerns.
Re: Your posts 7, 9 11 and 14 on this thread: are we to conclude that your 20+ posts on Judith Anne’s recent farewell thread were not particularly heart-felt after all? Your responses are a lot closer to simple ridicule than debate, a tendency you and a lot of other people were mouthing their “mea culpas” about barely 72 hours ago.
Such a conclusion would be 100% wrong, inaccurate, false. 100%
Try again. Your assumptions are greatly off the mark.
Some RC’s understand. So I know it’s possible.
Please try again.
BTW, I don’t ‘mouth’ or ‘idly finger’ mea culpas at all.
My repentances and confessions are primarily to God. He knows the heart thoroughly to the nth degree. There is no hiding or sham with Him. I know that full well and do more or less all I can to behave accordingly.
Thankfully, He also knows how off the wall allegations otherwise are.
**They keep pulling at my heartstrings...**
That’s the Holy Spirit talking to you. How many times now? Are you listening and following up on these promptings of the Holy Spirit.
Our priest always says “Three times and you know it’s the Holy Spirit and it’s time for you to take action!”
Book on Mary turns runaway youngster immersed in drugs and crime into a priest
Dr. Robert C. Koons (former Lutheran) - Journey Home - Monday 3/31 - Conversion Story
The Story of a Convert from Islam Baptized by the Pope at St. Peter's [Magdi Cristiano Allam]
How Do We Know Its the True Church? - Twelve Things to Look For [Fr. Dwight Longenecker]
"Have you not read?" The Authority behind Biblical Interpretation [Robert Sungenis]
New faith pulls Hot Springs family together (Baptists join Catholic Church at Easter Vigil) [Danny Morrison and family
SciFi Writer, John C. Wright, Enters Catholic Church at Easter Vigil (conversion story)[John C. Wright]
"What is Truth?" An Examination of Sola Scriptura [Dwight Longeneckerfamily]
LOGIC AND THE FOUNDATIONS OF PROTESTANTISM [Fr. Brian Harrison]
Pope baptizes prominent Italian Muslim [Magdi Allam]
My Journey of Faith [Marco Fallon]
My (Imminent) Reception into the Roman Catholic Church [Robert Koons]
Thousands in U.S. to Join (Catholic) Church - Many Feel They Have Found a Home
TURN ABOUT (Carl Olson, former Evangelical and Monday's guest on EWTN's Journey Home)
Former Southern Baptist Pastor Now a Traveling Crusader for the Catholic Church [Michael Cumbie]
All Roads Lead To Rome (A Southern Baptist's Journey into the Catholic Church)[John David Young]
Allen Hunt, Methodist Minister ...Journeys Home (Catholic, Re: Real Presence)
The Challenges and Graces of Conversion [Chris Findley]
An Open Letter...from Bishop John Lipscomb [Another TEC Bishop Goes Papist]
Unlocking the Convert's Heart [Marcus Grodi]
His Open Arms Welcomed Me [ Paul Thigpen}
Why I'm Catholic (Sola Scriptura leads atheist to Catholic Church)
From Calvinist to Catholic (another powerful conversion story) Rodney Beason
Good-bye To All That (Another Episcopalian gets ready to swim the Tiber)
Bp. Steenson's Letter to his clergy on his conversion to the Catholic Church
Bishop Steensons Statement to the House [of Bishops: Episcopal (TEC) to Catholic]
Bp. Steenson's Letter to his clergy on his conversion to the Catholic Church
Bishop Steenson Will Become a Roman Catholic
Married man considers turn as Catholic priest
Pavarotti returns to the Catholic faith before dying
Searching For Authority (A Methodist minister finds himself surprised by Truth!)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part VI: The Biblical Reality (Al Kresta)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part V: The Catholics and the Pope(Al Kresta)
The Hail Mary of a Protestant (A true story)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part IV: Crucifix and Altar(Al Kresta)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part III: Tradition and Church (Al Kresta)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part II: Doubts (Al Kresta)
Conversion Story - Rusty Tisdale (former Pentecostal)
Why I Returned to the Catholic Church. Part I: Darkness(Al Kresta)
Conversion Story - Matt Enloe (former Baptist) [prepare to be amazed!]
THE ORTHODOX REVIVAL IN RUSSIA
Conversion Story - David Finkelstein (former Jew)
Conversion Story - John Weidner (former Evangelical)
12 Reasons I Joined the Catholic Church
Conversion Story - Tom Hunt
The Tide Is Turning Toward Catholicism: The Converts
John Calvin Made Me Catholic
Journey Home - May 21 - Neil Babcox (former Presbyterian) - A minister encounters Mary
Going Catholic - Six journeys to Rome
My (Imminent) Reception into the Roman Catholic Church
A Convert's Pilgrimage [Christopher Cuddy]
From Pastor to Parishioner: My Love for Christ Led Me Home (to the Catholic Church) [Drake McCalister]
Lutheran professor of philosophy prepares to enter Catholic Church
Patty Bonds (former Baptist and sister of Dr. James White) to appear on The Journey Home - May 7
Pastor and Flock Become Catholics
Why Converts Choose Catholicism
From Calvinist to Catholic
The journey back - Dr. Beckwith explains his reasons for returning to the Catholic Church
Famous Homosexual Italian Author Returned to the Church Before Dying of AIDS
Dr. Francis Beckwith Returns To Full Communion With The Church
laetare (commentary on ordination of married Anglican convert to the Archdiocese of Los Angeles) Father Bill Lowe
Catholic Converts - Stephen K. Ray (former Evangelical)
Catholic Converts - Malcolm Muggeridge
Catholic Converts - Richard John Neuhaus
Catholic Converts - Avery Cardinal Dulles
Catholic Converts - Israel (Eugenio) Zolli - Chief Rabbi of Rome
Catholic Converts - Robert H. Bork , American Jurist (Catholic Caucus)
Catholic Converts - Marcus Grodi
He Was an Evangelical Christian Until He Read Aquinas [Rob Evans]