Friday, 22 January 2016

Children's Colouring Books

Our Lady of Knock Catholic Story Colouring Book 

Text by Mary Fabyan Windeatt
Illustrations by Gedge Harmon

As Mrs. McLaughlin and 26-year-old Mary Beirne hurried along in the rain on the night of 21st August, 1879, in the village of Knock, Ireland, they were astonished to see a silvery light and three beautiful figures outside the south gable of the parish church; next to the figures was an altar with a lamb on it. Mary Beirne recognised the three as St. Joseph, Our Lady and St. John the Evangelist; she ran home to tell her mother and family. Word spread, and soon there were fourteen adults and children gazing at the marvel. After more than an hour, the vision faded away.

When the witnesses told their story, there were many scoffers. But soon there was a remarkable cure of a twelve-year-old girl who had been stone deaf for four years, and before long there were more cures - most of them after prayers to the Blessed Virgin Mary and after touching a piece of cement from the south gable of the church.

Some people were puzzled because Our Lady had not requested prayer and penance at Knock, as she had done at other apparitions. But the parish priest suggested that this may have been because the Irish had never lost the spirit of prayer and penance, having suffered so much from poverty, famine and terrible persecution for the Faith - often because they would not deny the Mass, the Sacraments, Our Lady and the Saints. Perhaps, he suggested, the remarkable apparition at Knock was a silent blessing and a reward for the centuries-long faithfulness of Catholic Ireland.

With hindsight, we can now easily understand that the apparition at Knock was a warning of things to come, with the parish church serving as a symbol of the 'official' structures of the Church - the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass would no longer (with relatively rare exceptions) be found inside the official structures but forced outside to the periphery.

Our Lady of La Salette Catholic Story Colouring Book 

Text by Mary Fabyan Windeatt
Illustrations by Gedge Harmon

One day back in the year 1846, fourteen-year-old Melanie and eleven-year-old Maximin were pasturing their flocks on a mountainside in La Salette, France, when suddenly they saw a bright light, in the midst of which was a beautiful lady - the Blessed Virgin Mary. She was seated on a rock, weeping bitterly. She told the children that people should not work on Sundays or blaspheme, and that because they did these things her Son would have to punish them with famine and disease. She then gave each of the children a secret message.

After a time, both the children wrote down their secrets to be sent to the Holy Father. The Pontiff remarked that Maximin's secret had the simplicity of a child. But after he had read Melanie's, he became grave and spoke of calamities to fall upon the Church Militant. The Pope was much impressed with the secrets; he sent word that a new church should be built at La Salette. Soon La Salette became a place of pilgrimage.

Both Maximin and Melanie were to have a difficult time for the rest of their lives, the message from Heaven was too disturbing for many men of the Church to contemplate and the messengers were greatly scorned. After some years God called home these two messengers of Our Lady - first Maximin, then later Melanie. Today there is a big church in La Salette, and a shrine in honour of Our Lady which recalls the warnings she gave to us with such sorrow and love through two shepherd children in 1846, but still the warning from Heaven goes unheeded.

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