A year later, both the mystery and the amazement remains. What a year it’s been. It was one year ago – the 2nd Sunday of December – that I took the photo which turned into this. December 11, 2016.
Since that day (see the original post here), I’ve corresponded about this photo with hundreds of people from over 170 different countries. This “Side of the House” blog has received over 267,000 views and I believe that between Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and emails, it has received approximately an additional 750,000+ views. Dozens of people have reported to me that this image has brought them to tears. A handful have told me that it has brought them back to the faith. I actually injured myself last January pulling several all-nighters trying to answer all the correspondence I received. My right arm needed a break from the keyboard for several days.
But this isn’t my first observation of the active work of the Blessed Virgin Mary in our world or even in my life. She intervened directly into my life in the early summer of 1990 when I was in extreme pain, bordering on despair. If it weren’t for her, I’d have nothing and be nothing today. She literally saved my life, but this experience was so powerful that it’s sometimes hard for me to talk about. Maybe it’s still just too soon.
If you are looking at this photo with interest, I invite you to meet my mother. She was given to me and the rest of the Church by Christ on the cross. (John 19:25-27). Let me tell you, she is a powerful friend in heaven, ALWAYS working in complete and perfect harmony with her Divine Son. If you love her, she will ALWAYS direct you to her Son, Jesus. (John 2:5)
When I went to the Grotto to pray today, I took another photo. This is nothing unusual. I’m always taking photos. By a weird coincidence, my battery happened to be at 38% – almost exactly what it was at last year when I took the first photo. As soon as I took the photo today my phone immediately shut down – just like last year! This year, when I got home and charged it up, there was nothing but a pleasant photo of the Grotto on it. Oddly however, I had taken 2 photos and only one appeared in my photo album. The other is just gone. I didn’t go to the Grotto today in search of some new phenomenon. I went to pray. In all honesty I was actually relieved when nothing showed up on the photo.
I’m working on collecting some stories about how the photo from last year touched people so much. If you have a story, I’d be interested in hear from you. Please leave me a comment or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!