PARADOXICAL

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Friday, April 16, 2004

 


An audience with Sr. Teresing Castillo


Coming face to face with Sister 'Teresing' (Teresita?) Castillo was a weird experience.
Sr. Teresing is, of course, the postulant from Our Lady of Mt. Carmel's convent in Lipa City, Batangas, who claims to have received messages from the Blessed Virgin Mary 11 years ago. [Note below the date this piece was written.]


The visionary is now well-known for her accounts of the apparition - our local version of Fatima and Lourdes - especially the shower of rose petals, events which the Catholic Church is still in the process of investigating. A book has been published about these apparitions, authored by media personality and Marian devotee June Keithley.


After the recitation of the rosary in our Community, Sr. Teresing led a short prayer and immediately delivered a talk about the motherhood of Mary, especially during the last days of her Son and after His death. She talked quite lengthily on the role of Mary in man's salvation: "Through her loving 'yes', we became Christians." "She's a mother whose son is God. She destroyed enmity between heaven and earth. From her, we received His blood and God received His humanity, with the same bonds of mother-child intimacy." (Sidebar: Do you realize that the flesh of Jesus was biologically the flesh of Mary?)


"There was nothing external to distinguish her from other mothers," Sr. Teresing noted, as she spoke about Mary's seemingly mundane routine of baking, fetching water, washing clothes, etc. She recounted Mary's hardship in her seven-year exile in Egypt, the loss of Jesus - probably her bitter-most experience, the consolation of which even Jesus seemed to intentionally withdrew - and Mary at the crucifixion, where she was denied to even touch her son's hands.


"She would have loved to go to the tomb with Him herself but she chose to stay put to continue His mission," Sr. Teresing went on, noting that the Blessed Mother's humility did not hinder her from her Christian zeal.


"She understands the life of Divine Grace." "She's not just the mother of Jesus, she's not just an intercessor. She is our mother." "She endured her sufferings with quiet dignity and forbearance." "Let's make her our model and inspiration."


"As St. Grignon de Monfort put it, 'He has not God for his father who has not Mary for his mother.'"


Sr. Teresing proceeded to talk on Mary's virtues, foremost of which is humility, "the foundation of all other virtues."


The third part of her talk dwelled on Mary's message to her which were no different from those of visionaries from other known apparitions: the enemies surrounding the Church, the most grievous sin of abortion, the importance of parents as models to their children ("The language at home should be love."), and the need for daily Mass (if possible), recitation of the rosary, and frequent communion. Sr. Teresing reportedly asked the Blessed Mother about the significance of the rosary and the Blessed Mother, she claimed, answered, "Little one, the rosary is my favorite devotion because it covers the life of my Son."


"The rosary is like a little Bible," Sr. Teresing added.


The following are the Blessed Mother's specific messages on specific dates.


2/2/19__: "Let peace begin with me." "Remove (?) all resentment, bitterness, revenge..."


"I am with you in your struggles."


5/5: "Be converted now, not tomorrow"


"Jesus is a Redeemer."


5/24: "Calamities will not mark the end (of the world), but are merely an awakening."


"Repent and be converted." "Pray for conversion." "You do the praying, I'll do the pleading."


12/__/1997: "Chastisement is already here but people continue to be bad. It is given(?) little by little so people will be converted."


The visionary from Lipa also stressed the importance of prayer - which she likened to "conversing with God"....."from the bottom of our heart" - and offering up little daily sacrifices. "It's the act of offering that merits a lot," she explained.


Here are the Virgin Mary's messages to the Philippines, according to Sr. Teresing:


3/25/1994: "I am the mother of hope and tenderness."


"I love the Philippines because most of you love me." "You call on me whenever you are suffering."


"This country is(?) created for something great."




Sr. Teresing recounted her conversation with another visionary from Ireland, Cristina Gallagher, when the latter came for a visit to the Philippines:


"From her seat inside the plane, Cristina saw the Philippines to be covered with a blue mantle."


"The triumph of the Immaculate Heart will start from the Philippines," Sr. Teresing quoted Cristina Gallagher as saying, then noted the EDSA miracle as a case in point.


Again, the BVM: "I did not die on the cross but I suffered in silence and tears."


Sr. Teresing capped her talk with a very simple advice. "Be sure to smile always when you meet people - especially people whom you dislike." (The latter comment received knowing smiles from the audience.) "A smile disarms your anger for that person," she explained.


Sr. Teresing struck everyone who saw her as simple, humble and gentle, yet with a clear and assertive voice. But what is quite extraordinary about her is that she looked a couple of decades younger than her 72 years!


An open forum and a short mass healing followed, as well as an "anointing of holy oil." The mass healing consisted of a plain recitation of a prayer from one of the estampitas she had distributed at the start of the assembly.


In the open forum, one Community member asked the visionary to describe the appearance of the Blessed Mother. "Oh, she's very beautiful!" she gushed. "Even the most beautiful Miss Universe cannot compare with Mama Mary's beauty!"


Sr. Teresing also informed the crowd that she was no longer receiving messages, the last message being in 1997. But she said the Blessed Mother may manifest her presence by way of rose scents. She also said that her relationship with the Church "is now okay, thanks be to God." (She had experienced visitations from the devil and persecution from the princes of the church, no less, getting banished from the convent, getting hospitalized for heart attacks, and so on.)


The audience also learned that the statue of Our Lady, Mediatrix of All Grace in the Lipa City shrine was the third try of the sculptor because Sr. Teresing was not satisfied with the first ones - but that the statue somehow "corrected by itself."


(This event was made possible by AYP, a Community member who's also a Marian devotee.)


11.10.1999



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