Vassula Returns to Portugal
On Saturday, December 10, 2005, Vassula and I arrived in Lisbon, Portugal. The same day that we arrived from abroad, Vassula was scheduled to speak at the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. You cannot help but to think when the Lord says in a message, "you will have no rest" (May 24, 1987) and to keep up with His pace. The Lord says in a message, "I wish to remind both of you, how important it is to keep up with My pace, the urgency of My Message; you are facing the dawn of the great events to come; put your heart at work; then, be gracious to one another; tepidness in your work displeases Me" (February 18, 1995).
There was a Rosary, a Holy Mass, and then Vassula addressed the crowd of two thousand people. Since we were in the month of the celebration of Christmas, she touched on the topic: "The meaning of Christmas." In this message she read where the Lord is disappointed in the way we have forgotten His birth and view it as a secular holiday, etc.
December 24, 1991 TLIG message:
"...today I come with peace-terms and a Message of Love, but the peace I am offering is blasphemed by the earth and the Love I am giving them is mocked and jeered in the Eve of My Birth; mankind is celebrating these days without My Holy Name; My Holy Name has been abolished and they take the day of My Birth as a great holiday of leisure, worshipping idols...I have warned the world."
She also spoke on Repentance (September 13, 2002), the Purification (August 17,1988) and Intimacy with God (April 25, 1999). Everyone was so attentive, that the Cathedral was completely quiet and still so that one could have even heard a pin drop. Vassula spoke in French and there was a translator for Portuguese. There were approximately six priests who attended the Mass and then stayed after Mass to hear Vassula's talk.
Vassula addresses the crowd of two thousand people
After her talk was over, the six priests greeted her in the Sacristy with much enthusiasm and warmth, expressing how happy they were to meet her. We went with them to a small reception where there were coffee and refreshments for us. Afterwards, one of the priests escorted us out and made sure we went on our way safely. We truly were impressed by their friendliness and openness to the True Life in God Messages.
Vassula with priests after the talk
We then were led by the spirit and departed for a three-hour road trip north to Porto (this is where port wine comes from) where Vassula would be speaking the next day. It was at this point that jet lag started to kick in.
When we arrived at the Convent in Requiao, they gave us a brief tour but took us around only by car because it was dark and the convent was so large. I was touched by the holiness I felt there. They had prepared a lovely meal of fresh duck and treated us to a specialty in Portugal: the fruit cake often served during Christmas time. The young novice nuns that were in the convent were so gracious and hospitable. Vassula shared conversations with them on topics of the apostasy in the church (Oct 10, 1989), prophecies (here) and a spirit of anti-Christ (June 27, 1991), and that many people are teaching the symbolism of the Christmas tree and an anti-Christmas spirit.
"At Christmas every Christian is asked to celebrate Christ's birth by rejoicing and going to Church and celebrating His Holy Name. Many, in their apostasy, celebrate and worship the Christmas tree instead, exchanging gifts, eating until sick, and amusing themselves to folly" (http://www.tlig.org/en/spirituality/letters/tsunami/).
Father Milheiro and Sister Isabel, who invited Vassula to come and speak, continued to accompany us and were telling us about their prison ministry. What they had to report was highly impressive. They have gone to sixty prisons and have distributed over fifty thousand books to the prisoners. Father Milheiro has received fifteen thousand testimonies over the years. He now has a book published, so far only in the Portuguese language, containing many of the prisoners' testimonies. On the cover is a picture of Vassula with the title, "And You, Who Do You Say I Am?" These two indefatigable evangelists and prison ministers also distribute posters of Christ to the prisoners. It was extremely inspiring to hear of these fruits of the TLIG inspirations. Father Milheiro assured us that with all of the spiritual material he hands out to prisoners, he gets the most positive response from the True Life in God books. "Wherefore you shall know them by their fruit" (Matthew 7:20).
Father Milheiro's book of TLIG prison testimonies, "And You, Who Do You Say I Am?"
On Sunday morning December 11, 2005, Sister Isabel took us for a beautiful walk of the grounds of the monastery. It was a brisk, clear day with the sun shining and the birds chirping, lending to the peace and tranquillity there. One could truly feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. We found out that the convent has many chapels, but most especially, there is also an area dedicated to the garden of Gethsemane which has a special large board with a TLIG message from Jesus about His agony in Gethsemane (May 16/17, 1987).
Next, Sister Isabel showed us the room where the TLIG books get printed in the Portuguese language.
Left, Touring Monastery grounds; Right, Chapel dedicated to Our Blessed Mother
Chapel with cave inside; Nativity scene
A Spirit-filled event took place in the afternoon. Previous to this day, both Father Milheiro and Sister Isabel were so concerned about the two-week bout of rain and heavy winds since Vassula's presentation was to be outdoors. Yet, while the people gathered, some in warm coats, as it was still a bit brisk, we were reminded of Our Lord's words to the Apostles on the stormy Sea of Galilee: "Be still!" And the winds and the sea obeyed Him (Mark 4:39-41).
The event began with Holy Mass, having twenty priests concelebrating for the three thousand people there. After that the Rosary was offered. Some persevered in standing on the sidelines even though everything lasted four hours; the winds had disappeared and not a leaf on the trees was stirring. Neither was the audience stirring who were thirsty to hear Jesus' Words through His instrument. So on the day of the event, despite the previously stormy weather, there was not even a leaf shaking. Everything was so still. "Be still, and know that I am God..." (Psalm 46:10).
His echo, Vassula Ryden, and I were quite impressed that people came out of their comfort zone and stayed faithfully for those four hours even until it became dark and colder.
Vassula handing out prayers to the crowd
After the talk was over, there was a reception with the clergy and people who helped in the event with lots of food and sweets being served. It was so enjoyable to see the priests ask Vassula for her autograph. They were like little children waiting and wanting her to sign the prayer cards that they were holding. Apparently, many of the priests have been reading the True Life in God Messages for years. Many of them have seen Vassula in Portugal at other speaking engagements. This was very encouraging.
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Vassula with a group photo of the clergy
Benedictine Monk priest
Vassula with Father Milheiro and Sister Isabel
We retired early for bed in order to rise early enough to catch a 5 a. m. flight to South Africa for the next set of meetings there. Father Milheiro, Sister Isabel, and the other Religious Sisters all came early in the morning to greet us with big smiles and with an abundance of love. They really made us feel so welcomed and appreciated.
May God bless them for their tireless work and ardent dedication over the years of disseminating the TLIG messages to the people and to the thousands of prisoners. Obrigada! to all (means thank you in Portuguese).
TLIG reader in New York City, USA