Vassula's Mission to Madrid and Avila
October 25 - 28, 2008 - On her way to South Africa, Swaziland and Lesotho Africa, Vassula is called to Spain
"How blessed the nation that learns to acclaim you! They will live, Yahweh, in the light of your presence. In your name they rejoice all day long; by your saving justice, they are raised up." (Psalm 89: 15-16)
Vassula's missionary visit to Madrid and then Africa was a great success. Traveling endless hours by air and land without complaint, as ever she gave 100% energy to the task entrusted to her by Our Lord of bringing God's joyful message to all those who are waiting, in spite of the difficulties and problems she encounters at every step.
The organization and programme for Vassula's trip to South Africa were almost ready when, literally at the last moment, an invitation was received from the Bishop and Abbott of the Benedictine Abbey of "The Holy Cross of the Valley of the Fallen", Dom Anselmo Alvarez. This added a visit to Spain to the programme. Thus, the trip to South Africa was routed via Madrid. Vassula has visited Spain many times in the past, as well as South Africa, Swaziland and Lesotho.
Madrid - Spain
On Saturday evening, 25th October, we were met at Madrid Airport by Pilar and Victor de Oriol, organisers of her talk, and set off for the Benedictine Abbey which is located near the town of San Lorenzo de El Escorial. On the other side of the valley rises one of the world's largest basilicas - Basílica de la Santa Cruz del Valle de los Caídos, hewn out of a granite ridge, and the tallest memorial cross in the world, a 152.4-metre-high construction of stone.
Sunday, 26th October, was a day full of sunshine and light both literally and metaphorically because Vassula's meeting with Dom Anselmo was warm-hearted and full of love. The Bishop-Abbott, a reader of the True Life In God Messages, had had a personal meeting with Vassula two years before. He asked her, therefore, to address a private meeting attended by 80 people he had personally invited on the 15th anniversary of the monastery.
Since the day was sunny and there was little time before Mass, Dom Anselmo invited Vassula to go for a short guided tour of the abbey. Walking in the direction of the basilica, we went through a large underground tunnel and descended several metres below ground. Exactly below the spot where the huge Cross is located is the cruciform basilica. Over the altar hangs a large wooden crucifix and in the four corners are huge statues of the Archangels Michael, Gabriel, Azrael and Raphael in sorrowful prayer. The vision rivets the attention of anyone who visits!
Vassula's address took place at 4:30 in the afternoon and was followed with interest by the 80 participants, the majority of whom were hearing her for the first time. Among them were 7 Benedictine monks, a number of priests and several nuns. Dom Anselmo welcomed Vassula and introduced her to the audience.
Vassula spent a few moments explaining on her own background prior to the messages and how they began, as most attendees were new. She then spoke about the great apostasy in the world. She referred to St. Paul's second letter to the Thessalonians, chapter 2, which says that, at the great revolt, God will manifest Himself at the end of times. "... We are currently in a period of great apostasy but God is manifesting Himself to revive His church. He has promised a Second Pentecost which is the manifestation of the Holy Spirit who renews and reveals His church. God always manifests Himself to mankind not to teach us something new but to reiterate all that He has already taught us. He is the reminder of His Word."
At the end of the talk, Vassula answered questions and signed books and received the loving thanks of people grateful for this message to humanity. Ricardo Paramo, the person responsible for recording, was particularly impressed with the spirituality of her talk and expressed the desire to interview Vassula for Spanish national television.
On Monday, 27th October, accompanied by Fr. Jose Antonio Puche, a Dominican priest, Pilar, Victor and Jose Luis a member of the TLIG prayer group Barcelona, we visited the beautiful town of Avila, which is known to have the longest medieval walls which still surround the city but is even better known as the birthplace of St. Teresa of Avila. We walked along its small picturesque streets on the way to the two convents where St. Teresa lived as a nun of the Carmelite order. At the Convent of the Incarnation, Fr. Jose Antonio presented Vassula to the 30 Carmelite nuns, most of them young. They listened cheerfully and with interest, from behind metal bars, to Vassula who related briefly her experience with God which drew exclamations of childlike joy. They took books, DVDs, and copies of the CDF explanations as well as information about the journeys Vassula makes in connection with her mission. We then took our leave in order to move on to the Convent of San Jose where several more Carmelite nuns were also waiting with obvious interest to meet with Vassula and to learn about her conversations with God and her mission all around the world.
At noon, Vassula met with TLIG volunteers who had come from Madrid, Bilbao, Barcelona, Valencia and elsewhere. She gave instructions for the creation of further prayer groups and said that "wherever there was no team-spirit, then this activity would not bear fruit" and gave the USA as an example of what could also happen in Spain. Vassula placed a small emphasis on TLIG readers taking the responsibility to work together as a group, cohesively in order for the fruits of witnessing to be seen. For example, she said that it is imperative that readers get together to publish the books, as, without the books (messages) it is impossible to establish prayer groups, organise meetings, allow witnesses to give their testimony and to initiate new ways of spreading the messages.
Tuesday, 28th October, was the first wintry, rainy day in Madrid. A get-together took place with three priests who wanted to meet Vassula and learn how her communication with God first began. Vassula, swiftly covered her 23 year experience with the Lord. The response of the priests was enthusiastic and they took books of the Messages and the book about unity as well as books written by theologians about the True Life in God Messages and the Lord's chosen instrument whom He is using to remind us of His Word and to warn us.
On the morning of the following day, Wednesday, 29th October, we saw with surprise that it was actually snowing! It would have been wonderful if we had had warm winter clothing with us. At midday, the journalist Ricardo Paramo had arranged to interview Vassula for Spanish National TV Channel. The interview lasted an hour and Vassula talked about many things emphasizing on Unity of the Church. At the end of interview, she offered him the single book of Messages with a personal dedication which he accepted with gratitude.
In the evening at 22h at Madrid Airport, we left Pilar and Victor de Oriol and thanked them for their hospitality and love. Determined to share God's love through Vassula's witnessing and by spreading the Messages, they had successfully organised and executed this first part of the programme. Now, onto Africa!