After some moments, he asked the 33 Filipino pilgrims to see if something
had happened. “The second time Julia opened her mouth we saw the blood,
but this time also on her tongue we saw the host that was still whitish
and half of it was like flesh. When
we saw that we were all crying, people were kneeling and then I just felt
so much the presence of the Lord,” a pilgrim said.
Orbos knelt before the tabernacle for a long time.
Julia told Fr. Orbos that she saw, during the consecration, the
Blessed Mother behind Fr. Orbos and Fr. Ernie Santos, spreading her mantle
around them, embracing and protecting them in a very special way.
late Salesian priest Fr. Ernie had kidney trouble but the pilgrimage
rejuvenated him and he went back to East Timor where he worked hard
propagating the faith.
1992, the second pilgrimage took them to the Holy Land, then to Lourdes
and Rome. Julia was feeling well from Rome to Paris, Lourdes to Paris,
but started to experience pain on the shuttle bus taking them to the
plane. A pilgrim recalled
seeing blue veins twitching on her face.
The pain Julia felt was like those dealt by hammer blows on the
head, a pilgrim recalled. She
needed a separate room that evening.
plan to have Mass at Maria Majore church the next morning was cancelled
because of Julia’s intense suffering and also Fr. Orbos’ plan to visit
the SVD house. Mass was
celebrated in a room in Hotel Massimo so all 27 pilgrims could be
together. During the Mass,
Fr. Orbos told them that Julia, a victim soul, started to have pain the
day before for the forgiveness of everyone.
A pilgrim related what Fr. Orbos told them: “because while all of
us in Lourdes decided to have cleansing of the body by going to the baths,
and cleansing of the soul by going to confession, not all of us were truly
Blessed Mother told Julia that she was being asked to suffer for them
because they were not truly repentant.
Julia was seated near the altar and was still in pain.
Fr. Orbos gave the pilgrims a few moments to reflect and be truly
sorry for their sins. Before
the offertory, Julia coughed violently that she was almost thrown out of
her chair. Soon afterwards,
she was smiling and expressed that everything was ‘OK’ and the pain
was gone because everyone was sorry for their sins.
After communion, Julio, Julia’s husband, called Fr. Orbos to show
him that something extraordinary was happening.
Everyone saw the host bleeding.
next day, the pilgrims participated in a Mass at the Miracolo
Eucaristico church in Lanciano where the first recorded Eucharistic
miracle happened in the 8th century.
They had prepared spiritually for the visit to the church as Julia
herself announced, through an interpreter, that they spend the day in
reflection. They did so by
praying and singing.
Fr. Orbos was returning the ciborium, he heard a commotion as people
gathered around Julia. He
became apprehensive. Seeing
very vividly blood and the host turning into flesh and becoming thicker
and thicker, Fr. Orbos called a parish priest of Lanciano to witness it
and they both prayed over Julia.
some time Fr. Orbos told Julia to swallow it.
“Some people were saying get the specimen.
I won’t do that,” Fr. Orbos explained.
“She was to tell me later on that it was so hard to swallow
it.” “It was so hot,”
she said. “Fresh blood is
hot,” Fr. Orbos said.
all three occasions when the host she received from Fr. Orbos turned into
blood and flesh, Julia was asked to swallow it.
Fr. Orbos always prayed for discernment.
the Mass, Julia told Fr. Orbos that the vision she experienced during the
consecration was that of Christ crucified and of a light coming from the
heart of Jesus going to the chalice, through Fr. Orbos and then extending
to the people. Fr. Orbos said
that he really felt so warm during the Mass.
“Fine, good, thank you,” he told Julia.
the greatest surprise awaited them in the museum in Lanciano, where a
large painting showed the vision Julia had during consecration.
Orbos’ message is “Stay close to Mary and you will never abandon
Christ. You know, Mama Mary
is very happy if we come close to her Son.”
He strongly urged that people form prayer groups and cenacles and
devote some time to perpetual adoration.
“The key is all here in our hearts.”
is asking you to come closer to the sacraments, to the Eucharist.
My only request now is please pray the Mass and make your communion
more personal—feel the Lord. My
dear friends, you don’t have to see a Eucharistic miracle. Blessed are they who have not seen and yet believe.
A miracle happens in every Mass.”
In leading the flock in praying the Hail Mary, he said, “we say
it with all of our love” and when we come to the part ‘pray for us
sinner now,’ we pause and pray what we want to ask.”
the Eucharistic phenomena which he was privileged to witness,” he said,
“I found that it was Mary who brought me closer to the Eucharist.
We’ve studied all that in theology, but she allowed me to
experience something which I could never forget.
I am not saying that those are miracles.
Let the Church take care of that.”
The Filipino priest added: “It has so stabilized my life, my
priesthood, it is so clear.”
of us have a vocation. Do
your work well. Do your best. Life
is short. We’re all just
passing by. Do something good
and worthwhile. It so
happened that God called me to be a priest to touch the lives of