This book is the first of the four volumes of sermons and discourses given by Fr. Slavko Barbaric and Fr. Tomislav Vlasic during 1984 - 1987 in Medjugorje, and contains talks given from Easter until December 1984.
All chapters of this book are now included
When you come here you are all interested in what Our Lady is saying , what you can see and so on. Our Lady is interested in what is happening in your souls.
This is most important, more important than all the news. This is really the deepest matter we must now consider. All the messages of Our Lady can be summed up in one word : "Pray". When I tell you to pray I have not said enough. By listening to the daily messages of Our Lady, especially through Jelena, this word takes on a new richness. A week ago, Our Lady said: "Pray as much as you can, pray how you can, pray more and more" and added "you can pray even four hours a day." I replied: 'if I tell people this perhaps they will turn away because it seems impossible'. She replied :"Even you do not understand . It is only one sixth of the day." I replied, through the visionary : 'You want us to pray all the time.' Then I saw that she was happy. Afterwards, I meditated on this and understood that we must really pray all the time. I understood that when we pray sufficiently we acquire a desire for God, a continuous contact with God. I remembered another message given by Our Lady, in February, I believe: "When I tell you to pray, pray, pray you must not understand just an increase in the number of prayers. I want to bring you to a deep desire for God. That you may always desire God." I understood then that to have a continuous desire for God means to pray. I remembered what Our Lady once said, on Holy Thursday, I believe, in answer to my question; 'Dear Mother, can you tell us how Jesus was able to pray for whole day and night ? What method did He use?' She replied: "He had a great desire for God and the salvation of souls." I then remembered that prayer comes from a great desire for God and the salvation of souls. If you put yourself before God with the attitude of Our Lady you will realise the things that need changing in your family life and in your private life in order to acquire this desire for God.
Meditating on this, I discovered that we Christians are like sick people because we have lost our appetite for God. We have an appetite for eating and sleeping but people have to make an effort to pray. Prayer has become an effort because the desire for God is lacking and He is not at the centre of our lives. In order to effect the conversion Our Lady speaks of we must progress so as to reach a prayer which is a desire for God.
Last week I explained to the parishoners how they could pray continuously. I told them that when they went into the fields, to pray as they went. After an hour's work and they are tired, to get up and rest a while and to say: Jesus, I want to rest in You; Jesus bless what I have done. This really is a continuous prayer, a breath of God. Try to find contact with God all the time. Seek His blessing and give Him everything.
Our Lady wishes to bring about this attitude in us. It seems to me that, with this attitude to prayer, we will reach the point in which God will be the centre of our families and our homes. It is my conviction that to put God at the centre of our lives is to put prayer at the centre of our lives, to desire God continuously and to discover the deepest values of Christianity.
It is through prayer that we realize this meeting with God.
(Fr. Tomislav Vlasic - 26th May 1984)
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