There are two principles of faith which are of great importance and which should guide our lives.

1. Faith Is The Byword For Those Who Watch.

What this means is that we need to be people who constantly watch in faith. We watch both for where and when the Lord is active in our lives and the world around us; but also for where he could be brought into a situation through our prayer of faith.

This general attitude can and should be regarded as a way of life: we are always being, not merely aware of God, but of where he is active and where he could be active if we intervened in prayer for his action. For, in the latter respect, Jesus told us: "So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. (Luke 11. 9, 10 NIV)

Now, it would surely have been superfluous for him to have said this if God always supplies what is needed anyway, without his being asked. The unavoidable implication of what he says here is surely that there are, in fact, many things which we do not receive simply because we do not ask for them. Hence our lives should be expressed through a repeated asking, seeking and knocking. This is not to be implemented in a selfish seeking for one's own advantage, but through a constant watching in our lives at the events around us, and which occur in the world, for those opportunities through which God can intervene as a consequence of our acts and prayers of faith.

Sometimes these may concern things which do affect us personally and directly; at other times they will relate to world events in which we are not directly involved but which we do need to pray for in faith. So faith becomes the byword for Christians, the thing which, along with love, is our distinguishing characteristic.

2. Love Is The Sensitivity Of The Poor In Spirit

This may seem quite different from the first principle but is, in fact, highly complimentary to it. The poor in spirit are such because they know their absolute reliance on God for all things -- and that reliance is a continual act of faith. Indeed, this can be seen as an essential underpinning for the first principle. One of the main reasons why some Christians are not people of an active and daily expressed life of faith is because, although they may acknowledge it in principle, they lack the realization of their utter dependency on God for all things.

Our objective is to make every aspect of our life subject to faith. Even when we pray, we should not do so without asking the Holy Spirit to be our Pray-er.  When asked about it, almost any knowledgeable Christian will affirm the role of the Spirit in this respect. But how often do we form and structure our prayer our selves?. Yet this is a practice which separates the faithful Christian from the less faithful Christian. Truly this is where our life of faith should start. But it should not end there. Indeed, if i sit down to write an article like this without asking for the Spirit's guidance and inspiration, what good is that?

Let us begin our life of faith with and in prayer. Paul advises us that it is the Holy Spirit who does our praying, not us. For example, Paul tells us in Ephesians 6:18 that we should pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. So however we are praying and whatever we are praying for, we are doing it in faith and therefore relying on the Holy Spirit to accomplish what we cannot.


  "Come boldly to the throne of grace"! (Hebrews 4:16) Why? In the Old Testament the High Priest sacrificed an unblemished lamb for the atonement of the sins of the people. This sacrifice, which was always performed in the outer court of the temple, had been ordained by God.

Jesus Christ is our High Priest. He became Himself the Lamb (Rev. 5:8) and was slain in the "outer court," outside the walls of Jerusalem, the city of God. He was faithful to God, who had ordained this from the foundation of the world.

What are your needs today? Are you concerned about your children's choice of friends and activities? As a young Christian with a couple of toddlers, I had a strong urge at a conference to buy a tiny wall plaque with the inscription: "As for Me and My House, We Will Serve the Lord." (Joshua 24:15) That verse became a daily prayer and was boldly displayed to all who entered our foyer door. My gals, both blessed with good friends, godly husbands, and successful careers, are now serving in ministry in our church. As for me and my husband, our desire to know and serve Him increased steadily through the years, as did our faith.

The book of Joshua starts with, and repeats several times, the admonition to be strong, of good courage, and without fear. Why? Because "the Lord your God is going with you." He is the One who will win the battles for you. What He did for Joshua and the children of Israel who were faithful to Him, He is still doing today for you. Only now we have Jesus as our High Priest making constant intercession for us and leading us into victory. He has made the way for you and because of Him you now have direct access to the Father. There is no more need for sacrifices to be performed by priests or any other mediators. He has done that for you once and for all. All you need to do is go right up to the throne of God, ask Him for forgiveness whenever you know you've missed it, and ask Him for whatever you need!

When my husband, Jack, was struck with a serious illness, and this has happened several times, we went boldly to His throne, proclaiming His promises of long life and healing. He heard us and He answered our prayers - every time!

When you know the Giver, that whatever He says in His Word is true, and that His thoughts towards you are of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end," (Jer. 29:11) then you become like a child with his daddy. You will trust that He will give you whatever you need. In turn, you will get bolder and dare to ask over and above what you need, as you will know His Will.

Faith is bold. Like Joshua and his people, be bold, courageous and fearless. Ask whatever you want, and it shall be done unto you! (John 15:7)



You are very precious. Do you see yourself as precious, worthwhile and a blessing to those around you? Maybe you believe that the words spoken over you in your childhood or circumstances determine who you are. Do you say to yourself: "he does not like me; therefore there must be something wrong with me," "I am not as smart as my brother, so I'm no good," or "Daddy abused me; I must be awful and no good."

The thoughts implanted in your subconscious so long ago took root, didn't they? They not only planted themselves firmly in that fertile soil of a child's imaginative mind, but they keep showing up all the time. They are like your constant companions, reminding you and confirming over and over again that what you've been thinking of yourself is indeed true.

Your thoughts have power over you because they came from authority figures. You had no other standard to measure your feelings by unless you had positive, affirming voices to counterbalance your self-evaluation. Feelings have power to create firm thoughts and reactions, whether good or bad.

There is only one authority figure that can give you an accurate assessment of yourself. That is your Creator. When He made man, He breathed His Holy Spirit in him, and saw that it was good! He made you in His image and He wants to walk and talk with you. Adam and Eve "messed up" their lives (and ours) by listening to their "thoughts" whispered by the devil. Disguised as a snake, he made them think by asking the question: "Has God said?" That produced the thought that led to their downfall! That one act of disobedience gave Adam's God-given authority over the earth to Satan. The Holy Spirit departed and Adam lost his intimacy with God.

Because of the fall of Adam, man's spirit, though always yearning for God, was no longer connected to God (Genesis 1- 6). However, God still loved you so much that He literally came down to earth, was born as a man - the second Adam - to take back what the devil had stolen. Through Adam, death and sin came into the world. Through His sacrifice on the cross, Jesus bought back eternal life and restoration with God. He paid the price that we could not pay!

The Gospel of Jesus Christ simply declares that He loves you so much that He was willing to come into Satan's territory to restore that union. God, however, no longer had any legal authority on the earth. The only lawful way he could restore you to Himself was to take on an earthly body, thereby becoming the second Adam. Sinless himself, through His connection with the Father through the Holy Spirit, He carried every sin and sickness on His body on the cross. Although at his death the Holy Spirit left him as He descended into hell, He knew that through His obedience as a man, He would not only be reunited with the Holy Spirit, but be the first man to sit at the right hand of God!

Easter Sunday represents the day that the Holy Spirit literally raised up His mortal body, thereby defeating Satan and restoring our rightful place with Him. That is what it means to be "born again." By declaring Jesus' sacrifice on the cross and acknowledging your sinful nature, your spirit will become reunited to the Holy Spirit, and your relationship with Him will be restored.

As you get to know Him, and realize His power inside of you, you will never be the same! No more need to fear death or doubt where you'll end up. You are assured of eternal life with Him! You will then become his heir, bought back from Satan by His blood! No authority on earth could do that for you!

Look up! Jesus thinks you are so precious that He would have died just for you! His last prayer on the night before his crucifixion was for you to be one with Him as He is with the Father! This love He has for you will show the world that He is God and that you are indeed precious! (John 17)





In the midst of my seemingly never-ending work, often reading and writing even until the wee hours of the night or the first hours of dawn...in the hectic schedule of meetings and speaking engagements...in the noisy company of strangers and the anonymous mass of people...in the home where a hundred blushing roses, daisies, lilies and carnations surround me constantly with someone's tender thoughts...yes, even, in the warmth of such a gentle embrace given with so much love from a special person I now share these joyous days with...there is a loneliness...a need for something more, a need for true peace of mind and heart...a searching for the threshold where only God can come in and take over my life and breathe His goodness to calm my restless soul.

We cannot find God with our minds, for it is a labyrinth with many avenues of deception. We must turn to Jesus with our hearts...feel Him, Love Him, obey Him, be faithful to Him...This is what our spirit searches for.

I said this many times before. Whatever seems lacking in our lives, in our relationships, in our work...will only be filled up by our loving God more...

That is the ONLY way we can be relieved of loneliness - the loneliness that comes especially at the busiest and most intense moments of our day. I don't know if any of you have ever gone through this experience, but I am sharing it with you, nonetheless, because over the past days, I have been at a plateau where the pressure of circumstances and events outside my control has taken hold of my inability to act this way or that.  Checkmated, so to speak, and I don't have any pieces left to risk pushing further in order to win the game.

Turn to God. He, who has never left my side. He, who knows exactly what is good for me. He, who loves absolutely and with no conditions. He, who made me in His image. Turn to God, our best friend, our constant companion, our strength, our guide, our Savior.

And through the intercession of Mama Mary, pray for the wisdom to see the divine presence of Our Lord, and Master, in everything that we do, we are, and we believe in.

Be with me in this voyage. Be with me in adoration. Be with me in the offering of our daily labor, our intimate love, our talents, our sorrows, our pleasures and all that we hold sacred, precious, and worthy...for the salvation of our souls and the forgiveness of our sins.

    Remember someone is always praying for you. Mama Mary is touching your heart through our website, there is a litany of ways and means within our website that you are being chosen to manifest your love, following the greatest commandment, Love God above all and love one another. The choice is yours, follow what your heart tells you. There is so much to be done. We need your help. Do something. Anything.

    If you wish to know how you can get involved, email us by filling up the fields below and by doing so, your name will be added to our WALL OF PEACE. The Wall of Peace is our way of thanking all our brothers and sisters who are a vital part of Mama Mary’s legacy and will be offered perpetually in prayer as we unite regardless of race, color or creed as one love, one family, one world, Mama Mary’s Online Family.


Beloved Child of Mary:

Jesus loves you!!! Mama Mary loves you!!!

SEPTEMBER 8, 2009…IT’S MAMA MARYS 2025TH BIRTHDAY!!! What a delightful and joyful day it is for us all of us. It is another day when we all join as one to celebrate the birthday of our Universal Mother…MAMA MARY!!!

The Mama Mary’s Movement Foundation Inc. together with all Mama Mary’s beloved children are preparing another exciting and fun-filled celebration in her honor. Now on its 11th year, HAPPY BIRTHDAY MAMA MARY 2009 celebration will be held in Tierra de Maria, Nature’s Park.  Simultaneously we will be launching the Mama Mary’s virtual family online on September 08, 2009.

We have been celebrating for years now that is why we invite you once again in making this celebration another joyous and meaningful one. Your love for Mama Mary encourages us to seek your support by sharing your time, talent and treasure. There is so much to be done. We can only do so much. We need you.

Assist us by participating or contributing to any or all of the following:


Gather your friends and loved ones to join us in celebrating Mama Mary’s Birthday through her Birthday TV Masses:

Sept 7 at 9:00 pm at Channel 13
Sept 8 at 9:00 am at Channel 9
Sept 8 at 3:00 pm at Channel 4


Join us in praying the Prayer Power for Change every 12:00 noon daily


Help us to continue our Project Hope Programs 


Send your prayer petitions and mass intentions


Requests for Healing Pray-Over


Organize a group of 10 or more to form your Hail Mary decade praying the seed love devotion


Join our Mama Mary’s Online Family
Please check out our main website and our blogs


And join our online social networks and be updated with our latest programs and events

Follow us on twitter/twibbon and read the words of God Daily:

See the compilation of all our pictures through the years of service at:

See our Healing Videos at our Youtube Channel at:

Hoping for your YES MAMA MARY!!!

Let us all together say…

 Please help us by forwarding this message to all your family and friends!
Remember Mama Mary love you, Jesus loves you, we love you... God Bless you all!!!

Mama Mary's Movement Foundation Inc.Tierra de Maria, Nature's Park, Tagaytay City, Cavite, Philippines.http://mamamary.com.ph/+6346 860 1942 / +63917 328 6279

Our Story

Bro. Jiggers G. Alejandrino and Sis. Marivi E. Alejandrino
Mama Mary's Movement Founder and Co-Founder

The Mother of God, who was given to us to be our mother, too, at the last moments of His mortal life on earth, calls you….listen with your heart… When you opened this page, whether or not it was deliberate, the Blessed Virgin Mary had something very important to tell you, something that would change your life forever. Pray not to leave this site for the message she has especially for you.

But first, listen to this story because the truth it holds is testimony to the greatest power in the universe: the power of love manifested in miracles.
She called me when I did not know, at that time, how much I needed her help. Let me begin where all stories should begin…from my origins and my roots.

Both my parents were products of prominence by our country’s standards, financially and socially. They sent me to an exclusive Jesuit college where mostly the wealthy and the elite enrolled their sons. My growing-up years shaped my future wild and carefree lifestyle, ironically distant from the strict, Catholic training of the Loyola institution from where I finished high school in 1959.

On my first year in college, at the age of 17, I eloped. My wife, the daughter of another prominent family, was a pretty, young girl of 15, from an exclusive Catholic school. Before the first decade of our married life, we had six children whom we also sent to the city’s finest, exclusive colleges. Even in her youth, she already had the qualities of patience, devotion and compassion, which became the pillars of my future, colorful, roller-coaster life. Because of her, I was retrieved from simply drifting wantonly to being anchored and with a purpose. Without her strength and perseverance, I would never have found my way to the mission I was destined to fulfill. She was the wholeness of my fragments, the silent and suffering blessed half of our marriage, my soul-mate. But throughout our more than four decades of married life and to this day, we were, and have always been, on our own, independent of our parents’ support. My innate talents for persuasive entrepreneurship were my most productive assets.  My past life was a life of pleasure and a good amount of luxury with its attendant profligacy. Success was easy for me because of my talents for promotions and marketing. I could sell anything under the sun and could convince anyone to buy whatever it was I was selling. It was a career I carved out by myself, was on top of the world relishing the bounties of my expertise, and depended on no one to achieve my goals. I was not just self-made, I was comfortably self-sufficient.

Alongside the fast gains came the fast life: women, gambling, and the wild ways of hedonism. I could have any woman I wanted, and I did; could gamble on high stakes at a whim, and indulged in every conceivable worldly pleasure that I fancied. Although I remained married, my wife was left to domestic chores of caring for the family while I got away with all my indiscretions without her being aware of them. The world of pleasure became my world of indulgence and for many years I hardly went to church except when obligated for appearance’s sake. But I kept the balance between being a responsible husband and father and that of my assignations without missing out on family affairs, and it felt good…until…

By the time I was reaching 40 and the children were already finishing school, I reached some kind of a plateau in my life. The “fun” times seemed empty of meaning, the nightlife slowly simmered, and I was beginning to realize that, at the end of the day, with all the glitter and the frantic joys, the family, especially your wife, is what matters most, after all. This was not a spiritual realization. It was simply the fatigue… I had it all, and wanted more….I was still un-fulfilled. Something in my life remained a vacuum begging to be satisfied

By 1983, I began my search for a meaning, for a purpose in my life, for some direction I could hold on to for the future of my children. I got involved in what was then called, “the parliament of the streets.” These took the form of organizing rallies and marches, talking on the microphone or the bull-horn to lead the people to protest against the growing threat of martial law in our country. My name was on the roll insofar as the militants and activists were concerned. My life was also on the line.

In time, I began selling my collection of vintage cars, jewelry and other precious belongings, in order to spend for the organization of bigger street rallies and protests. More and more, my life became immersed in a cause I thought to be larger than my own life, believing that I was doing something significant for our country and our people and for the future of my children and grandchildren. My idealism surpassed my basic needs.

All these culminated in 1986 with the ouster of the dictator.

The country celebrated. The euphoria among those who led the crusade against the strongman contaminated the clique of the new powers. Everyone expected me to be highly placed in a position of power, considering the influence and the strength of the street rallies I successfully participated in. My being at the front-line of these mass actions was equivalent to a reward deserving the time, effort and money that I personally put into that cause.

Being rewarded with a position in government was never my intent. My intent was simply to be able to transact some business with these new breed of influential personalities. Employment was never in my work ethic; I simply needed the good connections for business deals. And yet, I became marginalized. I was having difficulty obtaining new transactions. The businesses I handled seemed to lose meaning and satisfaction. It seemed that whatever I had done for the past three years of street protests became part of a history that led to no meaningful purpose in my life the “higher cause” that I felt idealistic about resulted in an unpleasant feeling that the political opposition was done using me. I was no longer needed. There was no longer any value to my life.

It was the season of my severest stress. I could not understand why it was difficult to work out projects that I was happy and familiar with as in the past, when I seemed to be “well-connected” with persons of influence. For seven years, I struggled with my pride alongside the slow deterioration of my confidence in myself. For seven years, I floated in self-pity, wallowing in the vomit of my own nauseous disgust at the sorry-ness of my condition; angry at the world that owed me favor for favor and from whom I demanded repayment. For seven years, I could not even cry out to anyone for help out of sheer pride or out of the stupid ignorance to seek anyone in times of need.
It was not a financial crisis. It was a crisis of the spirit; and it was totally devastating. It affected my very existence that I began to question the reason for my being alive when nothing seemed to be of any consequence any longer.

Such was my fate and that period was the season of my worst frustrations.

The thought of turning to God for help never crossed my mind. God, and anything associated with faith, or the church, was distant from my life. Except for one item that was left to my care by my Mom, a humongous wooden image of the crucified Christ, I hardly had any intimate relationship with anything religious.

What should we do with this cross? My wife and I belabored not only its incredible size but also the impossibility of finding any place where it could be positioned in our house. It would not fit any room without having to chop off several feet off its horizontal and vertical edges and damage the symmetry and body of the image itself.

It happened that one of the projects I was tasked to work on was a reforestation project in the hinterlands. It was intended to be a livelihood project, and I designed the planting of fruit trees instead of the hardwood varieties in order to have harvested fruits ready for sale in a shorter number of years as income for the local growers. But more than just the distribution of seedlings for the tree-growing project, I formed the dwellers of the woodlands into some kind of a close community built around the project. In time, I arranged that the disposable lands in the area would be given to them and titled in their names as part of the land distribution program for open estates that did not belong to anyone and were considered properties of the state to be given to the landless.

It was hard work. I did the driving myself; the loading and the unloading of the seedlings for the fruit trees and the vegetables, the teaching methods of the planting, the inspirational talks on the reasons for engaging in such a project and the future benefits it would have for the highland inhabitants. With a handful of assistants, including my own daughters and sons, we slept in tents on the cold, damp earth; with absolutely none of even the most basic amenities or facilities we normally have in a decent home, that I wonder now at hindsight how my family was able to survive that ordeal.

Although there were still no spiritual manifestations for me at the time, the chapel which we built became the focus of our activities. It was there where the people congregated and where I would lecture for hours on the value of self-reliance, on the benefits of hard work, on the value of industry and patience.

But even as I seemed inspiring to those who listened to my words, I was, myself, slowly deteriorating in spirit and verve. My career was not at the cliff’s edge; it had fallen over the precipice and I stood there watching the pieces crumble and disintegrate. It came to such an excruciatingly painful level that my daughters offered to assist me with the daily concerns of our family life. One of them even walked three kilometers from the bus stop to our home in order to show me how much she was willing to sacrifice just so I could be helped, just so I could get out of my despair and be back to my normal, jolly, and carefree self .
It was ground zero and deeper. Here I was - a father whose life lay wasted and useless. I wanted to evaporate, to be gone, and to be taken away, to give up this kind of a life, to die. It was an empty existence even though it appeared to be helpful to the members of that community.

In practice, I was working with the poorest sector of our society. I saw the face of poverty, held its hands among the dirty fingers of the laborers, felt the ache on their backs and tasted the sweat dripping from their wrinkled skins. From amongst the quagmire of those villages, I cried out to God with my own pain. My life, so like the meaningless deprivation that surrounded me, was useless. There was no longer anything that seemed to work for me. I felt I was at the end of my cliff. I had no one else to turn to. My pride and the bull-headed influence of my zodiac sign, Taurus, compelled me further not to ask anyone for help. I was stubbornly arrogant as stubborn goes and that marginalized my ego even further.

Something in those woodlands beckoned me stay in the community. My restless soul needed a sanctuary the way these people needed a place of worship. And more, since my mother’s huge cross found a home in the chapel, the place became the repository of my lamentations.

In the wilderness, especially in the wilderness, God held my hand. From the depths of my depravity of spirit and will, when I could no longer accept the sad state of my life, when I could no longer understand the reasons for my suffering, and found no answers to the litany of questions I asked about my miserable existence, I saw God in the nameless, anonymous faces of the most impoverished of our brethren whom I was trying to help.

At the foot of the cross, nearing my 50th birthday, I cried out “Lord, if there is no more meaning in my life, take me now”.
I was aimlessly wandering for seven years, distancing myself from friends who distanced themselves from me until I avoided all kinds of social activities. I was adrift, floating without any direction, unmindful of anything in the world except my own personal grief. There seemed to be no respite for my restive inaction, until my wife coaxed me to join a “life of the spirit” seminar. Mainly, the purpose was to get me to renew a social life I had discarded because she knew that my life thrived in a community. I did.

My wife knew exactly what I needed. First, it was the spiritual healing that could come if I opened myself to the charismatic sessions. And second, there was the conviviality of the company which could give me a new start for any business I may be able to find a familiar interest in. She experienced all the years of our married life with fortitude and a great amount of faith in my potentials. When the whole world seemed to have failed me, she held on with her belief that I could overcome all problems; that I am a survivor and this, too, shall pass. Her faith in God and in me especially, was formidable and without her guiding my hand at that precarious stage, I would have fallen deeper into the abyss.

The charismatic sessions were nothing new to me since I was once a rector of the Cursillo Movement. But there was something new in the seminar which I had not experienced before. It was called the “baptism of the Holy Spirit,” and we were told to close our eyes. It was then when I saw in my mind’s eyes the terror of bodies burning without being consumed, and I heard the screams and cries of those suffering souls in hell as the session progressed. The moaning, the groaning, the agonizing were so vividly real they seemed to surround me as I stood there with my eyes closed.

Thank you, Lord, I kept on repeating. Thank you for my life. Thank you for being blessed…as I went through the ordeal of hearing the tortured souls burning while still alive.

After that experience, the first thing I did was to forgive. In attendance during that session was the man who had hurt me the most. By some strange arrangement, he was positioned in front of me. I spontaneously embraced him – he, who had caused me the severest pain a best friend could inflict at the time when I was most in need of his help and he refused me. From the depths of my soul and with the voice of my heart, I held him with both arms, pressed him close to my chest and whispered, “I forgive you,” to his ear, tears overflowing from my eyes. I was releasing myself from bitterness, from anger, from hatred, from pain…I was summoning love, opening myself to the greatest power in all of creation…LOVE, especially for those who have hurt you the most.

“Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.”

Everyone else who had wronged me became easy to forgive after that first, most difficult episode. In reciprocity, I also asked to be forgiven, by my wife, above everyone else. It was she who went through years of travail and tribulation watching me waste away our marriage, a silent witness to the abuse I had caused to myself and to our relationship; I asked forgiveness for the pain I caused my family who never understood the wildness of my ways, the children I should have attended to by moral example; my friends and relations with whom I have been harsh and mean and uncharitable; and, especially, the forgiveness from our Lord God, for all the past lives I have led defying Him, avoiding Him, and causing harm to my spirit and my soul.

“Many are called, but a few are chosen”. At this point, I offered my life and made a commitment to serve God.

In time, the “Presiding Elder” of the community had taken me to do things for him, until I was being asked to be a speaker, a prayer leader, and soon enough, I was the “darling” of the group. For a whole year, my ego was satiated with attention, with admiration, with adulation, even, as I felt that I was doing service to the community and to my God. It was ironic that I vowed to turn my back on my old life, deny my quest for power and wealth, and continue the work of speaking at seminars for the rest of my life. Yet, my ego felt otherwise; it was strangely uneasy with all the attention being given.

Each time I was asked to speak about my experience, people not only listened to my story, they cried, they wanted me to pray for them, to touch the pains and aches of their bodies and intercede for their healing, they wanted me to guide them in prayer.
I was un-schooled in theological doctrines and the catholic education I received was elementary compared to the enormity of Christian studies. All I had was a heart that was touched by the awesome majesty of a God who held my hand when I was completely alone and dejected. I asked him to take my life, to end it because it seemed not to have any purpose. Instead, He taught me how to speak His name, to speak His truth, to speak His love.

The language of the soul has its own alphabet, and it begins from the innocence we find in a child. We need not burden ourselves with the heaviness of dogmatic teachings and burdensome rituals. We only need a heart that is open, pure, and true.
“Thy will be done,” became my mantra.
“Thy will be done,” became the miracle of my life.

His will brought me for a visit to the Manaoag Church, known for Mother Mary’s image,” Our Lady of Manaoag” (Our Lady of the Holy Rosary). Was it a coincidence that it was my birthday and also her feast day when we arrived at the town? Although by habit as an Atenean, I always carried a rosary in my pocket, I was not a Marian devotee. It was simply a side-trip to the northern province where her shrine was located. But later on I realized that Mama Mary is never a side-trip. Before her image, as I knelt in ordinary prayer, she touched me.

Her touch became more pronounced when we visited the church where the image of “Our Lady Mediatrix of All Graces” was enshrined. A friend requested us to accompany her to the place because she wanted to experience the “dancing sun” phenomena.

The church was famous for the “rain of rose petals” in the late 1940’s and several miraculous events. One of the nuns, who witnessed these supernatural phenomena at that time, was at the adjacent gardens. As we approached her, she gave me a locket with a plain rose petal pressed between its glass cases. “You have a mission for Mama Mary,” she said to me, and then she went back to the convent after an exchange of a few pleasantries before we left for home. I thought of the gesture as a “gimmick,” perhaps to entice devotees to the Mother of God. Nevertheless, out of reverence, I kept the locket in one of my home drawers.

After a few weeks, I felt an urge to look at the locket. On it was imprinted the image of “Christ the King” as venerated in our churches, an imprint that was definitely not there when the locket was given to me. I did not feel any sudden spiritual surge of awe, nor did I think it rather strange that an image would appear on the locket in that manner and after the lapse of considerable time. When I showed it to the members of the community, they were stunned. They told me it was a sign, a miracle, and a supernatural manifestation.

I was still oblivious to the signs. I did wear the medal whenever I ministered to the community, to the sick, to the ailing, to the distressed. It is they who saw the rays of the sun streaming from the locket, or my face gleaming in light when I spoke, or some sense of celestial aura that they felt when they looked at the locket hanging from my neck.

Slowly, the touch of Mama Mary was penetrating my sense of being. She was a stranger to me, until then. The Mother of God seemed like a distant entity quite apart from the image of her son. My relationship with her in the past was through the rituals of the liturgy and the mechanics of memorized prayers. The rosary, although kept in my pocket, was an object of habit rather than of devotion. In truth, I hardly ever prayed the rosary at all. Only much later, as she made herself more manifest to me, did I realize that I would not be able to speak without holding the rosary, or touch the sick without the beads in my hands, or do any missionary work without first clutching the chain of roses for her guidance.

“You have a mission for Mama Mary,” the nun’s words echoed in my mind, even as I held on to the locket and my rosary. What could this mission be?

At Agoo, La Union, a town north of Manila, there were rumors of a visionary who was witnessing supernatural manifestations attributed to the Mother of God. Out of curiosity and upon the invitation of a friend, my wife and I went to the place in the early days of the so-called “apparitions.” On the day we went, a mass was celebrated at the apparition site. While we were taking our lunch, there was a commotion because the people at the locale said that the image of “Our Lady Queen of Heaven and Earth” was shedding tears of blood. I took it in stride.

We made our way to the Basilica where the image was going to be taken from the apparition site some three kilometers away. The crowd was already thick inside the church, but my wife and I were able to position ourselves along the middle aisle where the image was to pass. It was a position that, for the rest of my earthly life, I would never forget, nor exchange for anything in the world.

To the singing of the hymn, “Immaculate Mother,” she made her entrance through the portals of the Basilica, illuminated by the breath-taking brightness of the sun’s rays, shining like ribbons of gold that flowed from around her, as regal as a queen’s entrance where everyone knelt on bended knees in reverence. My Mother was entering my heart, permeating my whole being with her presence, suffusing my entire existence with a fervor so powerful that on my lips were formed the first and only words my entire life would ever say, to this day: “Yes, Mama Mary!”

I cried unabashedly.

They were tears of joy, of jubilation, of celebration. “Yes, Mama Mary!” She called, and I answered. Nothing in my entire multi-colored existence can ever approximate that moment. Nothing could ever measure up to the magnitude of that event. My mission was spelled out to me as radiantly as the sunset’s brilliance surrounded her face on that momentous afternoon in Agoo. It was along that center aisle, as she made her entrance, when I made my covenant of love with our Mama Mary.

From the center aisle, I seemed transported to the altar where her image was to be installed. People gave way as I passed through their thickness and proceeded directly to the pulpit where I began instructing the crowd on how to form themselves into an orderly line for the veneration, how to abstain from wiping the blood from the image’s face, and how to exit properly without much delay. What was I doing at the podium, and who authorized me to give those instructions?

She called me and that was the start of my mission.