Here is the last installment of Ivan's talk, given on January 31, 2012 in Kalamazoo, Michigan. What a blessing it has been to read his words and ponder them!
But we must pray for that [the gift of forgiveness]. We have to pray with the heart. Not just with our lips. Not just mechanically. Or to pray and then look at your watch to see how quickly you can finish. Our Lady desires that we make a decision for prayer, that we set time aside for prayer. To pray with the heart primarily means to pray with love and out of love, to pray with our entire being so that our prayer can be an encounter with God. Then when we pray with the heart we can leave that prayer with peace and joy. Our Lady says, "My dear children, may prayer be a joy for you. My dear children, if you wish to attend the school of prayer, then you have to know that in the school of prayer there are no weekends and no breaks." Every day we must attend the school of prayer. And our Lady says, "My dear children, if you wish to pray better, then you always have to pray more, because to pray more is always an individual decision, but to pray better is always a grace, a grace given to those who pray more."
Often times we say today, that we don't have time for prayer, that we are busy, that we work a lot and that we cannot always find time for the family and for the children. We come home from work, and we have to cook and clean, go shopping, go watch TV! We don't have time for prayer. But Our Lady says, simply, "My dear children, no, don't always say that you don't have time, because, my dear children, time is not the problem. The problem is love. Because, my dear children, when someone loves something and cares for it, they will always find time for it. But when somebody doesn't love something and doesn't care for it, they will not find time for it." That is why Our Lady is calling us so much to prayer. And that is why throughout these years, Our Lady has been awakening us out of the spiritual coma and spiritual death we are in.
Tonight at the encounter with Our Lady, I would like to describe that encounter to you and describe the most important parts of it. But at the beginning I would like to say first of all, it is truly difficult to describe an encounter with Our Lady in words. It is difficult to find the right words, because there are not words to truly describe the beauty of that encounter. So I want to tell you the most important parts of it with these words that I have.
For every encounter with Our Lady we always prepare with the Rosary. And when I was praying the Rosary with you, and as the time of 20 minutes to 7 o'clock approaches, I feel her presence more and more in my heart. And in that moment when I came up here and knelt, that was the moment when Our Lady came. The first sign of her coming is always a light which appears. But it is not a light that you ever see on this earth but a light of heaven. A piece of heaven comes to us. And when Our Lady comes, I never see anything in front of me or around me. And I no longer feel time or space.
Our Lady came very joyful and happy and she greeted all of us with the greeting, "Praised be Jesus, my dear children!" After that she extended her hands over the priests present here and prayed over them for a longer time. And after that she prayed over everyone present here and she prayed for a longer time for those who are sick among us. And after that I especially recommended all of the sick present here to her. After that Our Lady blessed us with her motherly blessing and she blessed all of those things that you brought to be blessed. And after that Our Lady turned to all of us and said:
"Dear children! Today also I am calling you to personal conversion. You be the ones who will be converted, and in your lives be witnesses. Love, forgive and bring the joy of the Risen One to this world where my Son died, and where people do not feel the need to seek Him and discover Him in their lives. You be adorers of my Son and may your hope be hope to those whose hearts do not have Jesus. Dear children, thank you again today for having responded to my call."
I then recommended all of you to her, all of your needs, all of your petitions, all of your families. After that Our Lady continued to pray over all of us here, and in that prayer Our Lady departed in the light and in the light of the Cross, with the greeting, "Go in peace, my dear children!"
Those are the most important things from tonight's encounter. I hope that we will respond to Our Lady's invitation and we will be co-creators of a better and more beautiful world, a world that is worthy of the children of God. And may tonight's encounter be the beginning of a spiritual renewal for us. When you return to your homes continue with the spiritual renewal in your families. I hope we have planted a good seed here tonight. And that seed fell on a good ground and it will bear good fruit. These times in which we are living are a time of responsibility. We must be responsible. We must responsibly accept the words of Christ and live them in our families. Live them in our hearts. And let us be participants in the evangelization of this world, the evangelization of the family, of young people, of the church. Let us be a living sign but let us not look for signs. Let us be the living sign, a sign of a living faith. Let us make a decision for peace. Let us pray for peace. Let us make a decision for God. Because in God alone is our true and only peace. Do not be afraid. May it be that way! Thank you and God bless you! (Ivan Dragicevic, speaking in Kalamazoo, Michigan on January 31, 2012.) Recorded by Mary TV)
One of our email companions mentioned to me that the words "Go in peace, my dear children!" were very anointed for her. I agree that they carry a deep anointing. Our Lady blesses us with those words. She offers us her peace, her protection, her mantle, her love in those words of blessing. We are embraced in her powerful love by those words, and we can go in peace, because her love accompanies us. Thanks again to Ivan for sharing this encounter with Our Lady with us. We are blessed!