(Intro) MIRACULOUS MEDAL & THE GARDEN OF THE IMMACULATA OF SAINT MAXIMILIAN M. KOLBE — The name of this site comes from two Catholic experiences we hope to share and help foster around the world. The first is the devotion towards Mary's own Medal of the Immaculate Conception, which is commonly referred to as "Miraculous". In the year of 1830 Our Lady would give her own medal which depicts her role in the plan of salvation given to her by God. Great graces have been contributed to this medal and has been the cause in conversion of many hearts. The second experience comes from the faith of four Franciscan friars with their own love and devotion towards this Miraculous Medal. In the year of 1930 the Holy Spirit would inspire these friars to leave their home of Poland and set out for the Orient with the sole purpose of sharing this very Catholic Marian medal with every soul.
This site may only be a small flicker of hope, but it is a hope in our Mother Immaculate of Divine Hope, whose flame of love is without limits. As unworthy and poor instruments in her Immaculate hands, we hope to continue to tell the story that was left by these four missionaries of the Immaculata. Please pray that prayer and penance may become our every breath and heartbeat, especially with the task of helping prepare the world for the coming 200th anniversary of the Miraculous Medal, and the 100th anniversary of the Franciscan Mission in Japan, which is known as the "Mugenzai no Soso" (Garden of the Immaculata).
(About) THROUGH OUR MOTHER IMMACULATE AND HER OWN MISSION — In the year 1830, Our Lady appeared in a vision to a young novice by the name of Sister Catherine Laboure. In this apparition the Blessed Virgin Mary would offer to the world a new Catholic sacramental medal for bring about the conversion and sanctification of all souls. In a special way this medal would capture the way the unique role that God has given her in the plan of salvation. With the depiction of her image along with the prayer, O Mary conceived without sin... on the front of the medal, the name given to this medal would be the MEDAL OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION. Soon after it was struck and distributed many reports of spiritual healing and conversions were associated with the medal, that immediately it began to be referred as "MIRACULOUS!"
In 1854, just 24 years after Our Lady would give us her own medal, Pope Pius IX would declare the Immaculate Conception as a dogma of the faith. The Holy Father would define this Catholic Truth using the words of the Franciscan theologian, Bl. John Duns Scotus (1266 – 1308). Blessed John Scotus was a great defender of the Immaculate Conception in his own day, as has the order of Franciscan throughout the centuries. So much so that the Immaculate Conception is known in the Church as the "GOLDEN THREAD OF THE FRANCISCAN ORDER". It was even said that St. Francis of Assisi, being a build of Catholic Churches, may have been the first to raise an altar in honor of the Immaculate Conception (Rovigo, Italy).
Once the dogma was proclaimed, great graces would come to the world, but none more significant than what would take place four years later (1858) in Lourdes, Francis. In a series of apparitions seen by a young peasant girl name Bernadette Soubirous. In these visions our Blessed Mother would give a simple message of prayer and penance and would also request that a chapel be built for her Eucharistic Son to be adored and worshipped. When the local priest asked to know the identity of this lady that was seen on by little Bernadette, the woman would be reply, "I AM THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION."
One hundred years after the Miraculous Medal, a Franciscan priest by the name of Maximilian M. Kolbe, would receive permission from his superior to leave Poland to start a new Catholic mission in Japan. The sole purpose of this mission would be to foster devotion to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, so before he set out towards the Orient, Fr. Kolbe would make it a point to go on a pilgrimage to visit and give thanks to our Mother Immaculate at her Shine in Lourdes, France. After arriving in Japan, the four friars would immediately begin to spread devotion to the Immaculate Virgin, and the mission convent and school they built would be known as, MUGENZAI NO SONO OR GARDEN OF THE IMMACULATA, which is still very much prospering to this day.
Now as we approach the 200th anniversary of the Medal of the Immaculate Conception, there is no better time to foster Marian Consecration and Immaculate Gardens throughout the world. Holy Scripture tells us that sin and death came into the world through the temptations of the serpent in the Garden of Eden. Immediately after the fall, God promised that the Immaculata would crush the head of this serpent (Genesis 3), which is depicted in the Medal of the Immaculate Conception / Immaculata statue. Jesus would than teach us the importance of needing perfect / pure soil in the Parable of the Sower (+St. Mark 4). When apply this great parable with the fact that Jesus would also call Himself the vine and His followers the branches (+St. John 15), Mary Immaculate would be the perfect soil. What the ancient serpent accomplished in the world through the Garden of Eden, may the grace and love of God be what comes of these (littlest) Gardens of the Immaculata.
(Conclusion) A M D G M I P V S T S A G — A mark of faith that has grown out the Catholic experience and faith formation under the Conventual Franciscans who once served at Queen of Angeles Catholic Church. The First Four Letters A.M.D.G. comes from the Franciscan priest and martyr St. Maximilian M. Kolbe, who was often heard saying (AD MAXIMAM DEI GLORIAM) "ALL FOR THE GREATEST GLORY OF GOD..." This brings us to the next two letters M.I., since the greatest glory to God was realized and only attained through our MOTHER IMMACULATE whose perpetual adoration and prefect reverence to her Son Jesus Christ flows from her holy obedience and maternal love. The next four letters P.V.S.T. represents a favorite proverb we only hope to better live by every day, "Commit your work to the Lord, and you will succeed." -PROVERB 16:3. In a way proverbs remind us of the importance of having good soil so that the Eternal Word of God will better bare fruit in our lives. And finally the last three letters are dedicated to the Franciscan Jewel and Doctor of the Catholic Church, St. Anthony of Padua. S.A.G. is a simple prayer devotion often used by someone shipping letters or packages with the hope in SAINT ANTHONY'S GUIDE.
(Thank you) UNWORTHY PENITENT & TRADITIONAL — Please keep in your prayers Mike, Fre & Bo (her littlest knights and their Miraculous wearing dog).