“Gather the children in this wild country and teach them what they need to know for their salvation.”
These words were spoken by a mysterious woman in white at the first and only approved Marian apparition site in the United States – Champion, Wis. – where the Blessed Mother appeared to a young woman in 1859.
Everyone is invited to hear more about this story at a special event on Friday, Sept. 8 at 7 p.m. at Assumption BVM Church, 4101 Old Bethlehem Pike, Bethlehem.
“Messages from Our Lady: All About Apparitions” will be presented by Father Philip Maas and is sponsored by the Allentown Area of the Order of Malta American Association, in partnership with the diocesan Office of Evangelization and Formation.
Sept. 8 is also the Feast of the Nativity (Birthday) of the Blessed Mother. “The Order of Malta asked each area organization to do something to observe the feast, and Bishop Alfred Schlert suggested a lecture on Marian apparitions,” according to Anthony Carfagno, who is a Knight of Malta. His wife Evelyn is a Dame of Malta, and Bishop Schlert is a Chaplain.
“Since she was assumed into heaven, Our Lady has been appearing throughout the centuries to remind the Church of her mission and call souls back to her Son,” said Father Maas. “Come and learn all about Marian apparitions. We will cover the Church’s teaching on apparitions, the theology of apparitions, and discuss some well-known (and lesser-known) apparitions, including one in the United States.”
After the talk, there will be pizza and refreshments in the Parish Jubilee Center.
“The Office of Evangelization and Formation is happy to be partnering with the Knights of Malta to bring this informational event to the people of the Diocese,” said Maggie Riggins, Executive Director of Evangelization and Formation.
The event is free, but please register at https://www.allentowndiocese.org/messages-our-lady-all-about-apparitions. For questions, email Riggins at email@example.com.
The Order of Malta is a lay Catholic organization known for its care of the sick and the poor, and defense of the faith.
The Allentown Area Order of Malta also sponsors “Defending Our Faith” in the Diocese. The first forum was “The ‘Why’ Behind the Church’s Teaching on Abortion” last October.
An upcoming “Defending Our Faith” forum on end-of-life issues is planned for Sunday, Nov. 13 at 3 p.m.
For more information about the Order of Malta, go to www.orderofmaltaamerican.org.
Photo: The National Shrine of Our Lady of Champion in Champion, Wis. (OSV News photo/Sam Lucero)