We know that St. Francis desired and believed his life to be an imitation of Jesus. His conviction that he was but an imitator preserved him from all temptation to pride, and enabled him to proclaim his views with incomparable vigor, without seeming in the least to be preaching himself.
This is naturally explained by the fact that St. Francis never consented to occupy himself with questions of doctrine. For him faith was not of the intellectual but the moral domain; it is the consecration of the heart.
The Franciscan basilica at Tomislavgrad in Herzegovina, where the Croatian king, Tomislav, was crowned 900 years ago, saw a particularly solemn ceremony this year when a group of young men took their vows. Apart from the eight seminarians from Herzegovina, who were surrounded by the whole Franciscan family and a swarm of family members and friends, there were four brothers from abroad: three Americans and one Australian.
Apart from the many Catholics who visit Medjugorje to venerate the Queen of Peace, of late there have also been an increasing number of non-Catholic Christians who visit Medjugorje to pray to Our Lady with trust and to ask for Her motherly intercession before God. A recent visit was paid by Anglican minister, Robert Llewelyn. Despite his age, he is spritely, and deeply spiritual. Peace and joy irradiate from his every word.
For the purpose of having a clearer picture of Caritas, I feel that, you should know the following which Jacquie and I did not have an opportunity to relate.
First, I am not sure how long it was that you told Terry that Mass was not allowed to be said at Caritas, but Terry interpreted it to our needs. Since 1995 or 1996, a priest from Phoenix, Alabama, came on a fairly regular basis and said Mass either in the field or the Tabernacle building. Terry always explained that as long as the priest was from outside the Diocese, you give permission for Mass. What your instructions were regarding this we had no idea. We only knew what Terry told us.
As I said in our discussion on 10/13/00, after I left Caritas a lot of the FBI came out in me and I did some of my own investigation and came up with some interesting facts. I say facts because the two people I talked to have absolutely no "ax to grind" with Terry or Caritas.
By Nancy Wilstach, The Birmingham News, Birmingham, Alabama, 12/28/04
Former residents and parents of residents accuse the Shelby County, Alabama, Caritas of Birmingham community, led by Terry Colafrancesco, of fraud, misrepresentation, undue influence, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and false imprisonment. They say Colafrancesco lures devout Catholics to Caritas and then takes all their money. A judge has ordered principals in the three-year-old suit to submit to mediation.
Colafrancesco created Caritas following the 1988 vision of a woman from Bossnia-Herzegovina who reported experiencing visitations from the Virgin Mary while standing in Colafrancesco’s pasture. She continues to have visions during her periodic returns to the US, and her most recent visit drew thousands of pilgrims. The community draws its membership from such people, who give up their property when they move into Caritas. The community also receives donations from the devout around the world. Caritas, which the Roman Catholic Church does not recognize, operates a school, sawmill, gift shop, and farm.
VATICAN CITY, 13 APR 2010 (VIS) - Press Office of the Holy See
The International Investigative Commission on Medjugorje met for its first session on 26 March 2010.
The Commission, presided over by Cardinal Camillo Ruini, His Holiness' vicar general emeritus for the diocese of Rome, is composed of the following members:
This Telly Award winning DVD recreates the beloved contemporary melody of The Divine Mercy Chaplet in Song, made popular on EWTN. Hear the voices of hundreds of children, teens, parents and grandparents as they pray for the poor, for the dying, and the unborn. Crossing all denominational lines and spanning all generations, Christians unite to tell the world about God's mercy. Available at http://www.generationsuniteinprayer.com