MY YOUNG FRIENDS Nicholas (12 ) and Katie (10 ) have just returned from a summer trip to Padua, Venice, Greece, Croatia and Turkey. While in Turkey they took a bus trip to Ephesus where the Holy House of Mary is located. I told the brother and sister they could create a post for the Pauca Verba blog, sharing their insights and prayer. Here's Nicholas' report followed by Katie's prayer. They're happy to help us get ready for tomorrow's Feast of the Assumption.
In the 19th century, Sister Anne Catherine Emmerich had visions of the house that the Virgin Mary lived in with Saint John the Apostle. A person who had heard both Sister Anne's descriptions and a legend about a house in Ephesus traveled there and found that the house matched Sister Anne's descriptions perfectly.
The house is located on a hill to protect Mary because at the time, Christianity was illegal since it rebelled against the establishment of the Roman Empire.
The house is still standing and there are parts of the walls and foundation that are still original, and if you go there can touch the walls. You feel like you could be touching the wall that the Virgin Mary would have touched herself. Some of the trees outside could have been there for thousands of years, even at the time of Mary.
One of the most interesting things about the house is that outside there is a fountain where you can drink and fill a water bottle. The fountain has been connected to a well that would have been where Mary got her water. The water is considered to be holy water. It's very wonderful to be able to drink from the well knowing that it's the same place that Mary got her water.
The Virgin Mary's house is one of the coolest places to visit. Just knowing that you are standing in the same place as the Virgin Mary is one of the most exciting things you can do.
your house is a holy site
for many religions.
Although you mean different things
to different people ~
whether someone believes
you are the Mother of God
or the mother of a great prophet,
you are special
in many ways to all.
Our religions are different,
but as we step on the stones you stepped on
we are reminded we are all children of God,
children alike in more ways than not.
We pray to you
that we may realize this in our daily lives.
We ask you to help us lead lives
of peace and love like your own,
to create a better world. Amen.