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Heaven Talks to ChildrenAfterlife Contacts, Spiritual Gifts, And Loving Messages
By Christine Duminiak
CITADEL PRESS BOOKSCopyright © 2010 Christine Duminiak
All right reserved.
Chapter OneApparitions of Saints and Others
If you are skeptical about the dead actually having the ability to visit us from the afterlife because you have never heard of this phenomenon or have not personally experienced an afterlife visitation or think that God would never allow an afterlife contact from the dead, then your skepticism is perfectly understandable. You may not be aware that ADC researchers and coauthors of Hello from Heaven, Bill and Judith Guggenheim, have stated that it's estimated that 60-120 million Americans (20-40 percent of the population of the United States) have had one or more (spontaneous and direct) ADC experiences.
However, even if your mind cannot fully comprehend it or believe it, I ask that you please be deferential and supportive of those who have had the pleasure of experiencing this type of spiritual phenomenon. Remember, we are limited human beings who do not have absolute knowledge and all the answers to life's biggest mysteries. If you are open minded and respectful to those who bravely share their sacred experiences with you, you may find that in your own time of great sorrow and mourning, God may bless you this way too. Keeping your mind open for all possibilities that are outside of the box of your human understanding can be your master key to opening up your own spiritual door to God and his amazing miracles.
The following is relevant, thought provoking, and encouraging information from credible people on after-death visits for you to consider:
The Vatican-In January 1999 the Reverend Gino Concetti, chief theological commentator for the Vatican newspaper, told the London Observer Service that the Roman Catholic Church believes in the feasibility of the dead being able to communicate with the living because of the Communion of Saints. The Church believes that communication is possible between those who live on this earth and those who live in a state of eternal repose, in heaven or purgatory. Concetti further advised that it may even be that God lets our loved ones send us messages to guide us at certain moments in our life. Concetti's comments were made in support of the very prominent American theologian and author Rev. Richard John Neuhaus who said that a friend of his had seen a ghost. (Neuhaus, who died in January ????, was an author, an editor in chief of First Things, and a leading intellectual who also informally advised President George W. Bush.)
On a personal note, in 2004 I wrote Neuhaus about his being referenced in this London Observer Service article. I told him about my book and about my wish that more people, including the clergy, were aware of the Roman Catholic Church's positive stance on afterlife contacts. Neuhaus corresponded back to me saying, "It is, of course, important to discern the spirits and to do so carefully, but the Church certainly does not deny the possibility of the communications of which you write."
Beliefnet-In May 2005, Lisa Schneider of Beliefnet.com (the leading multifaith online community for faith and spirituality) in her article "Faith in the Departed" reported her findings from an online survey of 10,000 respondents about ADCs. One of the questions asked was if anyone ever felt that the deceased were ever trying to communicate with them. The survey received more than 3,800 essay responses to this question. Schneider reported that those who responded in the affirmative greatly outnumbered the skeptics. Those of all faiths, even atheists/agnostics, shared testimonials of supernatural encounters.
C. S. Lewis-The popular Christian author C. S. Lewis of The Chronicles of Narnia series and the notable author Sheldon Vanauken have both reported seeing the ghosts of their wives, according to Brother John-Paul Ignatius of the Order of the Legion of St. Michael. Ignatius explains in his article "Seven Types of Ghosts: A Catholic, Biblical Perspective" that the renowned prolific author Peter Kreeft, Ph.D., mentions this fact in his books.
Canonized saints-Some of the Catholic Church's canonized saints have been reported to have made afterlife apparitions. Canonized saints are considered holy people known for their heroic virtue and through whose intercession three irrefutable miracles are required. These people were only declared saints after years of extensive investigations, testimonials, and documentation. The Church is extremely wary about being fooled by people who make false claims, so they do exhaustive research along each step of the path to sainthood. Patricia Treece, saint expert and top-selling author on spirituality and saints, has thoroughly researched documentation and testimonials about apparitions reported by extremely credible and ordinary people. Some of the people reporting to have received apparitions were later declared saints themselves by the Roman Catholic Church. The following five summarized accounts of after-death appearances that were reported by Catholic and Jewish people are from Patricia Treece's book Apparitions of Modern Saints:
1. Mother Cabrini (1850-1917) was a teacher and founder of an order of nurses, teachers, caretakers, and administrators. She was an excellent businesswoman who built hospitals, orphanages, and schools. Once when Cabrini was in great need of some immediate assistance, she prayed to one of the dead holy nuns of her religious order and asked the nun to go to God and obtain the favor for her. That same evening, Cabrini heard a gentle knock at her door, and then the door opened and in walked the dead nun. The nun assured Cabrini there would be a successful resolution to her problem. She also told Cabrini where she could find some important lost documents. All did turn out well, as the dead nun had predicted, and the directions to the missing papers turned out to be correct too. Cabrini was declared a saint of the Church in 1946.
2. Rabbi Herbert Weiner of Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel in South Orange, New Jersey, wrote the book 9 1/2 Mystics: The Kabbala Today. In Weiner's book he writes about personally studying with S. Z. Setzer, an expert in the Kabbala and Jewish mysticism. Weiner describes an interesting story about Setzer. One of Setzer's sisters had become seriously ill. While Setzer was in his room one day, his sister suddenly appeared to him. Then he heard a voice whisper in his ear that his sister had died. The next day he received a telegram that his sister had indeed died. He figured out the time of her death to be at the exact moment he heard the whispered message.
3. The Italian Franciscan priest Padre Pio, who while alive, was a stigmatic and had the supernatural gift of bilocation. (Bilocation is defined as the simultaneous presence of a person in two different places.) During his life as a priest, Pio had been visited by Jesus, the Blessed Mother, various dead saints, as well as many dead people not known to be saints. After his death in ????, it has been reported that Pio has visited many people back here on earth, and through his intercession with God, cures were granted to them. In 2002 Pio was officially canonized a saint of the Roman Catholic Church.
4. In 1941 in an Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland, prisoner Francis Gajowniczek, a former Polish army ser geant, was chosen at random to be executed. Gajowniczek cried out for his wife and two children just before they were going to kill him. Hearing Gajowniczek's cries for his family, another prisoner, Father Maximilian Kolbe, stepped up to volunteer to take Gajowniczek's place and was executed in place of Gajowniczek. Almost fifty years later in 1990, Kolbe, who was by then declared a saint by the Catholic Church, appeared to Gajowniczek after Gajowniczek was in an accident and pronounced dead. Gajowniczek was met in the spiritual realms by Kolbe who told him that it was not yet his time. And Kolbe was correct. Gajowniczek lived on to tell about his near-death experience.
5. In 1907, twenty-eight-year-old Sister Teresa Valsé Pantellini was lying ill in the infirmary suffering from terminal tuberculosis when the deceased Don Bosco appeared to her. Don Bosco was the cofounder of her religious order, the Daughters of Mary Auxiliatrix. Don Bosco had died from emphysema when Teresa was only ten years old. Because she had seen many photos of him over the years, she was able to recognize him when he appeared to her.
In the afterlife visitation to Teresa, she noticed that Don Bosco looked very athletic and much younger than in his photos. As he approached her, she immediately stopped him from giving her a cure and asked him to cure Sister Giovanna instead. Giovanna had been seriously ill for years and was lying in the room next door in the infirmary. As it turned out Giovanna had just finished saying her third novena to Don Bosco asking him to pray on her behalf for a cure. Don Bosco appeared to Giovanna very briefly, and as he went to leave, Giovanna started running around her room crying, "I've seen Don Bosco, and I am cured." Giovanna lived for over thirty more useful years. This was a case where both nuns were able to corroborate the supernatural appearance of Don Bosco visiting them the same evening that Giovanna was granted a cure.
After Teresa's death, the Pope bestowed upon her the title of venerable, which is the first step in the process of sainthood. Don Bosco was declared a saint in 1934.
The five preceding remarkable supernatural accounts show that at times God sends to earth known saints and others for the purposes of giving messages, comfort, guidance, and help. Why then would God not also send to us our own family members and friends who are in good standing with God (who are considered informal saints) for the same purposes of aiding and comforting us? The following 108 children's amazing stories may help you to agree!
Chapter TwoAfterlife Encounters Children One to Four Years Old
Children are pure spiritual bridges between Heaven and Earth. Our loved ones, who are now residing on the other side in God's paradise, often use the natural openness and the God-given spiritual abilities of innocent children to send us love, comfort, and healing, while they are awaiting our joyful reunion. These visits are a blessing from God. The following fifty-one true stories are delightful and amazing testimonials about children ages one to four seeing and talking to spirits of loved ones, spirit guides, and angels and to those who have committed suicide. In a number of cases, the child identified the "person" as a family member who died before the child was born. In some cases, the child was too young to understand that the person had died and emphatically insisted that he or she was there talking to the person in the room. In some cases, the child remembered talking to the person in Heaven while waiting to be born, and this person had in fact died before the child was ever born.
The Rainbow Angel
It was a cold, sunny day in January 2002 as I was driving my then three-and-a-half-year-old daughter Tia to preschool. From out of nowhere, she astounded me and said, "When is Uncle Ed going to die? I miss him and I want to see him." I told Tia that I would make plans for her to see him soon.
My Uncle Ed was like a grandfather to me. He and his wife, my Aunt Jeanne, had raised my mother from childhood. We didn't see Uncle Ed a lot, but I knew how much he loved Tia. He had made that apparent ever since he held her in his arms the first day I brought her home from the hospital.
The very next day, after Tia's uncanny question about when was Uncle Ed going to die and her request to see him, Uncle Ed suffered a stroke and his brain was hemorrhaging. We went to visit him in the hospital several times, and thankfully he was lucid during those visits.
However, a little while passed and Uncle Ed's condition worsened. We knew it was only a matter of time before he'd pass on, so he was transferred to a nursing home for end-of-life care. Soon afterward I visited Uncle Ed by myself one morning, with the plan of bringing Tia back with me in the afternoon after she had her nap. When I returned home, I found that Tia wasn't able to sleep because she was very anxious to visit her Uncle Ed. It seemed very important for her to visit him as soon as possible. She insisted on wearing her new pink dress and tights for the occasion.
I remember on the way to the nursing home that eventful day, Tia had asked if we could stop at McDonald's drive-through, so I did. Tia began eating her Happy Meal in the car and carried her unfinished French fries with her as we rode the elevator up to the third floor of the nursing home. As the doors of the elevator opened, I was startled to hear the sound of a loud bell ringing. It was almost deafening. We saw my mother and niece running down the hall frantically in search of a nurse. My heart sank.
When we entered Uncle Ed's room, he was gasping for air and my Aunt Jeanne was fearfully standing by his side. Through our desperation, fears, and tears, we adults were holding him and telling him we loved him. With all the commotion going on in his room, I was worried about Tia. I wondered what she must be thinking and feeling right now as she was witnessing all of this. Would she be traumatized? However, Tia just quietly sat there on a chair dangling her feet in the corner of the room, while happily eating her leftover McDonald's French fries. Amazingly, she seemed unfazed by our raw displays of emotion. Right after these thoughts briefly filled my mind, Uncle Ed passed over.
We were in the midst of comforting my Aunt Jeanne, when I suddenly noticed that Tia was joyfully skipping up and down the nursing home hallway, and she was singing! Her cheeks were bright red, and she was glowing. She was very excitedly telling people that Uncle Ed had died, as if it were cause for a grand celebration! As she continued to rejoice, it finally dawned on me. Uncle Ed was letting us know, through little Tia, that he was with God and joyfully dancing with the angels.
As Tia and I were heading home that evening, I was crying and praying. Tia told me she knew that Uncle Ed was going to die because the angel had told her. I asked her about this angel and wanted Tia to describe her to me. I took notes as she began telling me of an angel with pink hair. All my life, I had believed in angels, but after hearing that this angel had pink hair, I dismissed Tia's story as being fantasy.
After putting Tia to bed that night, I was cleaning off the kitchen table and decided to toss my notes about Tia's angel into the trash along with some old amusement park tickets. While discarding those things, I felt a strong sense of guilt, but chose to ignore it. Exhausted from the emotional events of the day and my overwhelming grief, I simply sat down on the floor and cried and prayed for Uncle Ed.
The next morning when I went back into the kitchen, to my shock and bewilderment, lying on the countertop were my discarded notes about Tia's angel and the old amusement park tickets I had thrown away the night before! I felt a deep chill travel up and down my spine. Convinced that this was a heavenly message for me to believe Tia, I asked her to tell me again about this pink angel. She replied, "You mean the Rainbow Angel?"
The words "Rainbow Angel" really grabbed my attention. Uncle Ed's daughter Diane had died several years before, and prior to her passing, she said she would send them a rainbow to let them know that she was okay. Several months after Diane's passing, Uncle Ed and Aunt Jeanne told me about seeing a beautiful rainbow right in the middle of their dark hallway. They knew this rainbow was the heavenly sign promised by their daughter.
Excerpted from Heaven Talks to Children by Christine Duminiak Copyright © 2010 by Christine Duminiak. Excerpted by permission.
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