(c)Mary TV 2019
Forgiveness is the most exalted form of love!
“My children, forgiveness is the most exalted form of love. You, as apostles of my love, must pray that you be strong in spirit and that you could comprehend and forgive. You, apostles of my love, by understanding and forgiveness, are giving an example of love and mercy. To be able to comprehend and forgive is a gift for which it is necessary to pray, and to nurture it…” (June 2, 2019)
Our Lady tells us that forgiveness is the most exalted form of love!! She knows what she is talking about. Jesus, from the Cross, said, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.” Jesus forgave us all at that moment with the Father. Their love for us was so exalted, so high, that we will never comprehend it. We have the hope of eternal life through that exalted love, that forgiveness. For all eternity we will be praising Jesus for that gift!
I want to share a homily given in Medjugorje back in 2014 by Deacon John Taaffe from Ireland. It is part of his testimony given in Fruit of Medjugorje, Episode 118! Deacon John shares his life story in this Fruit show. He was raised in a household with no religion, and with an alcoholic father. John grew to hate his father because of all the pain he caused by his addiction. John finally walked away from his family and entered the world, desiring only to make money. He was good at it and found himself well off and “happy”. But at a social gathering one weekend he met a young woman who led him back to the faith, to confession, and finally to Medjugorje!
This was when his life changed forever. You can hear him share about his journey to faith in Medjugorje in the testimony! It involves confession and forgiveness, as you can guess. Wow!
Deacon John Taaffe – Homily in Medjugorje at English Mass, 2014
“My name is Deacon John Taaffe. And I am privileged to be here with a group from the Northeast of Ireland. It is a great privilege to say a few words here. This is my 35th trip here to Medjugorje! Medjugorje has really been the place of my heart. I was a person who was away from my faith for many, many years. I was caught up in the world, I was caught up sales and marketing and money. And money was my god for many, many years.
When I was brought to Medjugorje, someone encouraged me to come. And at first when I came, it was all about signs. I heard people talking about the sun spinning. I heard people talking about different signs. And so, I said to myself, let me go there. And so, I was running around looking for signs, afraid I might miss something. On the first day I was here, September of 2000, I was standing by the side door of the church. Suddenly I saw a cross light up in the sky! I was flabbergasted. I said, “Look at this, this is a miracle!!!” And I ran to the telephone box and rang home and said, “I’m seeing a miracle already!” And people were gathering and there were more and more people and cameras. And a priest came by and I said to him, “Father, Father look!” And he said, “No, no, no, my son. Today we brought electricity up to the cross and we lighted it!” (Everyone laughed!!)
And you know it taught me something. At a very early stage in my pilgrimage, Our Lady taught me not to seek signs. Not to seek signs like that! Yes, I have seen the sun here alright, but it is not about the sun spinning, it’s about the Son. Our Lady is guiding every one of us to her Son. And every day she is guiding us so easily and gently back to her Son. She is encouraging us. The Holy Spirit is alive here coming today to bring us closer to Him.
I will tell you a little story. You know there are lots of stories, when you are bringing lots of groups here, there at lots of stories and miracles that you see. And the most important miracles that you see are the miracles of the heart. Because people’s hearts when they come here might be very hardened. And as the week goes on, they soften, they talk, and they come to know God more. They find peace, they find love, they find joy in their hearts.
I worked for many years as an addiction counselor. Now I am working with the Bishop’s Conference in Ireland setting up projects everywhere, projects to help people with drug and alcohol problems in parishes. And one day I was working as a counselor with the health board, and I was working with this girl. And this girl was one of the unfortunate people who had gone through a lot of hurt and pain from the Church.
When I first met her, she couldn’t look me in the eye. And the pain she was going through…. I went home and went in front of the Blessed Sacrament that night. And I remember the Lord telling me in my heart, “Stick with this girl. Pray for her and keep praying for her.”
And I worked with her and worked with her and this girl went through a serious hard time. And because of that she was cutting herself every day, overdosing every week, she was jumping into rivers and having to be dragged out. And my heart said, “Lord, I am finding it hard to trust, because this girl is really, really struggling.
One day I asked her, “Would you like to go to Medjugorje?” And she said, “I can’t go to Medjugorje because I can’t be around a priest. I can’t be near a priest.” And that was where she was at that time. And this girl finally said, “Listen John. I’ll go over. I’ll go over because I can sit out in the sun, and the scars that I have might heal up.”
The first day we arrived I said, “Come on, let’s go up Apparition Hill. We’ll go very early in the morning.” And she said, “Ok.” And we went up Apparition Hill with the group. And as we went I looked across at this girl, on her knees taking sharp stones out of elderly people’s feet. And my heart broke. And I went up the hill and I was just praying and praying, saying, “Our Lady, please touch this girl.”
And I came back down, with a little bit of resentment. Our priests are so special. Our priests are really, really special. And like everything, there is always one bad apple. Like in every part of life. And I went to confession that night, and I sat with this priest. And I told him how I was feeling about this girl. And this priest said to me, “Come on, take my hands…” I took his hands, and he prayed. Then he said, “Watch the miracle that is going to happen!” And I said, “Father, you don’t understand. You don’t understand.” And he said, “Trust, trust! Watch the Lord and the Blessed Mother work in this situation.”
I walked away. I sat on the wall by the hedge. And five minutes later I felt a tap on my shoulder. And this girl said, “John, I was sitting in my apartment, and I felt in my heart that I had to come down and go to confession.” She said, “Will you come with me? I can’t go by myself. Will you come with me?” I said, “I can’t come in with you, but I will be in the queue with you. I was just with that beautiful priest over there. If you want to go to him, I will stand in the cue with you.” She said, “Ok.” She shook. I have never seen so much sweat dripping from someone’s hands before. But she got in the queue, and we stayed and prayed. And as we got to the top of the line, the priest turned around and he winked at me!
She went over and sat down. And I was praying, “Please, please, please Lord….” Ten minutes passed, a half hour passed, three quarters of an hour passed, and hour passed!! I said, “Wow!” And after an hour and a half, the two of them stood up and hugged each other, and I just started to cry. And that girl came back to me, “John, I want to receive Jesus at mass in the morning. I haven’t received Jesus in a long time. I want to receive Jesus.” And the next morning she came and received Jesus. She was completely full of life again.
We went up to the Blue Cross, and we talked about leaving things at the Cross. Leaving things at the foot of the Cross. This was a day or two later. And she just said, “I forgive him!” It was hard. She wasn’t going to forget. But she managed to say the words. And it was the start of her freedom, when she said, “I forgive him.”
That girl now comes to Medjugorje every year with me. And I thank God, because these are the miracles that happen here in Medjugorje. Yes, the Son is waiting for us. The Son is waiting for us in the Confessional, where our blessed priests are available for any of us to come and reconcile with God. Use the opportunity this week to reconcile with God. Because there is no doubt about it…you know when I first came here I said that these are the interrogation boxes…. far from it. These are the boxes of love.
It doesn’t matter if we don’t remember the prayers. The priests will bring us through it. They will help us, but the important thing is to reconcile with God. Reconcile with yourself. Reconcile with your brothers and sisters. Please take the opportunity this week to go to the confessional and reconcile with God!! It is the most powerful way to come close to God. And especially this week as we move towards Pentecost, and the Spirit is moving so much within each of us. I just know that through my time here, the love, peace and joy that I have received in my life, my vocation which I received through here, and all these things, including my family who have come back to their faith through Medjugorje!!! It’s amazing! If we change, we can change our families, we can change our town, we can change our country. Amen!
(Deacon John Taaffe – Fruit Show 118! https://marytv.tv/fruit-of-medjugorje/ )
Well, we see the forgiveness is flowing like a river in Medjugorje! I encourage you to watch the full testimony of Deacon John Taaffe, as he shares about the great healing of forgiveness that happened between him and his father as well!!
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
©Mary TV 2019