For other information on stigmata:

http://www.mysticsofthechurch.com/2014/02/remarkable-facts-concerning-stigmata.html

Henceforth let no man trouble me for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus (Gal 6:17)

FRANCIS

Taken from the book by Fr. Fox

An early brush with Jesus and healing
Francis as a young child had an accident where he had broken three ribs, punctured his lung, and was bleeding badly.  The family at first took him for dead.   After the doctor examined him he was afraid to operate because of Francis’ weakened condition.

Francis’ family called an aunt who was the nun, Sr. Speciosa, to ask if she would pray for Francis.  All the nuns got up and prayed.  “The next morning the doctor was amazed that the ribs were no longer puncturing the lungs and the bleeding had stopped and all was beginning to mend, within 12 hours.  With a new X-ray they could not see any place where the lungs had been punctured or the ribs broken.

Francis told Fr. Fox that about 4AM the next morning he revived and called his mother to ask who was that beautiful man who stood over his crib with his hand upraised.  His sudden revival and the story of the boy was related to the bishop who could only say “It must have been Jesus.”

In my (Fr. Fox) many conversation with Frances it has become clear to me that he has never got over wonderment of what happened to him when he was very young and almost got killed in the accident resulting from his falling from the horse.
I was to learn that in the last six months of the life of Francis’ mother she would mention what happened to him when he was six years old. His mother would say, “This should have come out… Your should have known more about this.  This should not have been kept so quiet.”

Jesus speaks
It was early in Lent of 1993, that Francis received an interior locution which was a forewarning of what was in store for him.  He does not remember the precise date, only that it was early in Lent.  The message of our divine Lord was as follows:
“My beloved son, I am asking you to prepare yourself, my son, to receive my Holy Wounds.  I will be using you in a special way, but I need you to continue to pray.  Place your compete trust in me and do not be afraid of the future, for I will give you the necessary graces to accept this gift.  You will be persecuted, as I was persecuted.”

“I want you to consecrate yourself to my Mother.  That way you will become closer to me.  For she was blessed above all creatures, but she was hidden during her lifetime by the Holy Spirit.  She will look after you and protect you.  I am surrounding you with people whom you can trust when you have your difficulties.  Go to them and I will speak to you through them.  You will know these people by the peace in your heart.  My peace is always with you, my son.   Now go and prepare yourself.”

With this surprise message from our divine Lord, Francis was to enter a Lent which would conclude with the stigmata which remains to this day with all its sufferings.  It was our divine Lord Himself who alerted him to prepare himself spiritually for what lied ahead. Our Lord wanted Francis to consecrate himself to His Immaculate Mother who would soon be the one to bring him the interior locutions.

“She will look after you and protect you.” Mary’s messages begin.
On May 2nd, 1993 at 2:15AM Francis received the following message from our Blessed Mother:
“My dear Son:
Go out and TOUCH MY CHILDREN.  Your hands are my Son’s hands.  Continue to evangelize.  Bring back many to the Sacrament of Penance and to celebrate the Eucharist.  You are under the protection of me and my Son.
Look around. You are surrounded with love, love, love.
Thank you my son.”

June 8, 1993, 2:00AM :
“My beloved Son:
I come to you this night to tell your how much your prayers and suffering have meant to my Son and me.  Your suffering has been long my child.  Your have pleased my son and me.  We will be close to your.  The graces have been given to you.  Satan is trying to cause confusion among you. But I tell you, he will not succeed.
Pray my child, my children are surrounding you.  They will be with you in your difficulties.  Trust them.  I will speak to you through them. Go to them my son.
You are to pray, use your hands to touch my children.  I am your Mother and I will show you the way.  Just trust in Jesus for He will allow no harm to come to you.
This is a journey to the Father, who loves you.  Do not falter my son, for I am with you.    You belong to my Son, not to this world.  I bless you this night and ask you to share this blessing with all my children that come to you.  Share my message with them.  Tell them of the love and mercy of my Son. Pray, all of you, for those who have gone astray.
I love you and all my children .  Go now, take my words into your heart, for they are nourishment which will help my beautiful ones to grow.
I pray with you and for you.  Your loving mother.”

Aug. 3, 1993 (excerpt):
My Son:
I come to be with you this night to take your prayers and suffering to Jesus. It is He who sends me to be with you.  My son, there are so few that reach out to the lost children.  Please ask my children to go to them and bring them back… I ask you again to reach out to your brothers and sisters to spread my message which is so important.  My dear son, listen to your heart for I speak to you in its depths.  Pray for your priests, for I love them dearly...

8/18/93 (excerpt)
"Keep your rosaries always with your and continue to pray.  Turn to me when you are unsure for I will give you the help that you need…”
 

Fr. Fox asks, “Do you feel certain that you get these messages?”  His response was: “There is no doubt in my mind.  They come clearly… Mary talks very, very slowly. Jesus talks in a very quiet manner, just above a whisper.  The only difference I’ve noticed is that sometimes Mary’s voice can be more concerned, more direct.
 

The Nightly Suffering
You asked about “how long the passion or suffering is.”  It will start about 12:30AM.  It does last thirty to thirty-five minutes of intense pain but then after I don’t know if  I am in a trance or what, but it seems that all the things I see, the sins and the war, etc. is going through my mind.  I just have to pray for these suffering people.  The sinners and all these things.
I was in the great beyond.  I was here on the earth and yet I was not here… The severe pain started in my head like the thorns piercing.  Then it went to my eyes, then all over the upper body, the stomach, the back, the side, the arms.  I felt like I was being torn apart.
There is a pulling my shoulders and elbows, like they are out of joint.  It is like they are being pulled out of their sockets.
This can go to 3AM.  Many times I perspire so much I have to change my pajamas.  That one hour and a half or so afterwards its like I am in a different world.. All these things are coming to me: the civil wars, the abortion, all the homeless and the sins that one reads about, the murders, the abused children, the abused women, all this comes to me and I have just such a power to pray, “please Lord, please Lord, stop all this sin…”  It’s a very touching time I can’t explain it, Father.

When asked what sins especially he had suffered for, as our Lord often reveals precise sins,  he says it usually goes back to sins of the flesh…
Francis sees those he suffers for and says they are mostly in the ages from 25 to 40.
“There are so many of them.”  He said sadly. “So many.”
“Many sinners?” I asked him.  He replied “Yes… Oh!  They were sinning terribly.  Jesus was so sad.  Both Jesus and Mary were crying . There were many young men and and women in their twenties, on the beach, in the bars, walking the streets.”  Francis expressed great sorrow in his heart over this.

The next morning after Francis got up and left his room, I noticed blood on his pillow.  I asked him if he had put his hands up to the pillow and he said “no.”  When I went to brush off the pillow I found a small thorn.

“About two years ago I saw Jesus standing the foot of my bed.  His hands were down.  The blood came from the palms of His hands, down over his fingers and fell to the floor.  His head was crowned with thorns and also bleeding...  Jesus was wearing a purple robe.  His was disfigured, swollen, as if He had been beaten..  It was then that Jsus said to me, “You are to suffer for the conversion of sinners:… Bring my children back to me."  Afterwards I was so wet from sweating.  I expected to find blood, which fallen from Jesus, on the floor.  But there was none.
 

The Wounds
The marks on Francis’ hands appear to be a constant miracle in themselves.  At least no one can explain them and why the open wounds do not become infected.  The wounds on the palms are normally not covered except on Fridays.  They are exposed to all the things other people’s hands are in the course of a day.  Of the doctors who examined the wounds the first one was not Catholic. When he saw the marks in the hands he said immediately, “I’m a good Presbyterian.”   While Francis had not used the word “stigmata” the doctor did.  He added: “I’m going to read more on stigmata” and then added, “If you get infection, come back.”   Francis never had to go back.

Two other doctors who examined the wounds were specialists in their fields. Their sick children, both with childhood diabetes, were later brought to Francis so he could pray over them.  One doctor who is not a strong Catholic had his wife say of her husband: “He should be a much better Christian.”  She wanted Francis’ prayers for his conversion.  This doctor in looking at the wounds said, “I am a doubting Thomas on many things in the Church but I am not on this.”

Francis Touching and Praying Over People
Our Blessed Mother  told Francis: “Go out and touch my children.  Your hands are my Son’s hands.  Continue to evangelize    Continue to use your hands and touch  my children…”

When Francis has touched people while praying over them some of the crowd have reported that they have seen a glow about his body.  Such reports have come not only from the laity but even from nuns and a priest one time.  Some have experienced a glow from his hands or all around his body, like an amber glow.

Francis:   I’ve had the experience of having people who did not know about this shake hands with me, and not knowing what was happening, lose their balance and fall to the ground.  One young lad was very dirty, a back yard mechanic, and some people brought him over.  We were outside and he knew nothing about my hands.  His name was Mike. I said, “OK, Mike” and put my hands on face and said: “God bless you Mike” and I let go.  My brother said that when I went in the guy hollered and said, “Wow! What in the world has that guy got in his hand.  It shocked me from my head to feet..  He stood there for a long time.  Many just kind of act like they are going to pass out.  This is so common, it is hard to talk about it.”

On one occasion, May 1995, Francis participated in a prayer service where he touched people with his hands with wound marks on them.  There was a lady in a wheelchair given four months to live as she was gradually dying of cancer.  The following October the same lady met Francis when he was in the same area.  This time she was walking and in good health.  She said, “You probably don’t recognize me.  I came up to you in a wheelchair.  I saw tears in your eyes when you put your hands on my head and then on my face.  Here I am.  There is no cancer.””

At that same time there was a boy, about eight years old, who had been very sick with leukemia.  Francis prayed over him.  About five months later the boy ran up to him and said, “I was sick once.  Now I am well.”

A lady of a family was suffering great depression.  Day after day she could not sleep.  Someone asked Francis to call on her.  He prayed over her and left.  Shortly after, she fell sound asleep.  Later her husband came home and commented on the perfume that had been placed or sprayed in the house.  There had been none.  He asked where his wife was.
“She is in the other room sleeping.”  “Sleeping?  How’s that?”  He went to the room and found her fast asleep as she had already been for three hours.  The room was filled with perfume, noticed by others as well.

When Francis was visiting EWTN, Mother Angelica had Francis pass his hands over the blueprints of the new monastery that was being constructed. Then she asked Francis to pray over all of her Poor Clare contemplative nuns.  As Francis finishes praying with each individual he holds their hands in his.  Hours later the nuns were still remarking how their hands smelled to perfume.
 

 “Sometimes I give the person’s name when they did not tell me.  One time when I was praying over people a woman came to me and before she told me anything I said to her, “Your son is in prison.”  “How did you know?”

When people tell Francis they will pray for his suffering he tells them, “Don’t pray for that.  Pray for strength for me.  Pray that I will have strength to endure whatever the Lord wants to send me.”

Conclusion
Fr. Fox commentaries:
It is to be noted that in the Christianity of the East, specifically the Orthodox, whose priesthood the Catholic Church recognizes as valid, and therefore have a valid Eucharist, stigmatists have not been known to exist.

There is a stigmatist in  Damascus, a woman, whose husband is Orthodox, but she is Catholic.  I’ve talked to her and have heard from the former nuncio of her area verifying, without making any official Church pronouncement, that she is seemingly authentic.  The stigmata comes and goes and the sufferings are only in the years when the Catholic and Orthodox Easter coincides.  Her mission is the Christian unity.  (see Mirna)

The reasons given among the Orthodox Christians themselves why stigmatists have not been known among them is that in their spirituality and theology they emphasize the risen, glorified Christ.  They are certainly aware of Christ’s death on the Cross and redeeming actions, yet, the do not lay emphasis on Christ Crucified and His sufferings, as does the Roman Catholic Church.  They learn of stigmatists in the west with awe.  But what is known among them to occur on occasion is bi-location.  This would seemingly follow from their emphasis on the resurrection and the glorified Christ.   A glorified body surely has the properties of passing through objects, being now in one place and the next instant in another.  Padre Pio was known to bi-locate as well as bear all five of the wounds of Jesus Christ.

Francis and Fr. Fox on the mass: “It perpetuates the Sacrifice of the Calvary.  It is the same as to be on the hill of Calvary with Mary and John beneath the Cross on Good Friday afternoon. Jesus Christ becomes substantially present in His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity:  The REAL PRESENCE of Jesus Christ.  There is made present also the Act of Jesus Christ on the cross.  That is, the reality of the self same Sacrifice offered to God the Father by Jesus Christ as hung dying on the Cross on Good Friday afternoon is perpetuated here and now every time a validly ordained priest offers the sacrifice of the mass and performs the action of the two-fold consecration.

When the occasion arises to speak to others Francis speaks primarily about Jesus in the Holy Eucharist.  “That is what is important: Jesus.  Jesus in the Holy Eucharist… The Holy eucharist is the focus of the Catholic Church.”  In a simple way he speaks of our Eucharistic Jesus for he says,  “Without Jesus in the Holy Eucharist we would not have the Church.”

So we are asked, “What kind of person has this phenomena?”  THAT A PERSON IS HUMBLE, PATIENT, OBEDIENT, ETC. ARE ESSENTIAL CHARACTERISTICS IF THE SOURCE is genuinely supernatural.  Without them one would have to conclude that they are from other powers of the world besides God.
It is even possible that the devil can be speaking through a person who manifests signs that cause wonderment in others.

If a work is of God and is producing good fruit, good effects, one can also expect sufferings and attempts to destroy the good effects. The devil is never happy when souls are being converted and coming to Jesus Christ through the sacraments of reconciliation and the Holy Eucharist.

The opinion of the author of this book is that Francis is authentic.  But that is only my opinion.

During the time of my relationship with Francis, while he appears so natural and human, and is the same man his family has known all these years, when he just sits or stands about and visits.  Yet, as I’ve dealt with him in spiritual counseling and have seen him at prayer, and especially in ecstacy, he becomes the deeper spiritual man  I’ve come to know is within.  Then I can see him taking on the reality of the words of Sacred Scripture: “As it is my eager expectation and hope that I shall not be at all ashamed, but with full courage now as always, Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death.  For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain: (Phil 2:20,21). “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live but Christ who lives in me:  (Gal2:20)
One who witnesses the sufferings of Francis, can understand what it means, “With Christ I am nailed to the Cross.”
 

Copies of the book "Francis" A True Story--Family Man Suffers Passion of Jesus Daily by Fr. Robert J. Fox  may be obtained by sending $12 plus $3 postage to:
Fatima Family Apostolate
P.O. Box 55
Redfield, South Dakota   57469

To read a story of a miraculous cure by God through Francis, or to view pictures, click here

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