Fast forward to 1999. Ireland. The Ring of Kerry.
A lookout from which to admire the offshore Skellig Islands.
“Something’s happened to you,” said another fellow traveller. The bus took off. I burst into tears. Not only had all doubts about the Rosary disappeared. I got the distinct impression that Our Lady was telling me that the problems that the Irish had in their own Diapora was a hang-up from the grave sense of exile that afflicted Irish migrants. The bus driver told me that many people of Irish extraction had similar tearful experiences in the Ring of Kerry. He ascribed it to all the ruined cottages that were a legacy of the Great Hunger.
But I knew that Mary had “got” me at last. I incorporated this experience into a long narrative poem which I wrote based on the European travels that this incident was part of. The poem I called “Trip the Other Side by Aloysius Guise”. I expanded it with an epic poem on my Irish/Scots/English pioneer legacy.
A few weeks after that event, I started a very long poem on matters apocalyptic, including updates on recent Catholic prophecy. This poem I called “Wars and Rumours”. One section of it dealt with a century of Marian prophecy.
This I sent off to a lady friend. She wrote back and said it reminded her so much of a lady named Maria Divine Mercy, that she felt she should tell me about her.
I was hooked.
My informant had had her own experience of Mary.
She was operating the overhead projector at a meeting dedicated to the Medjugorja seer, Ivan. My informant was no particular devotee of Our Lady. But she felt a wind go past her and saw the hem of Mary’s garment, whom she could sense above the altar.
I had absolutely no numinous experience on that occasion. But years before I had done what I called a Jericho Walk round the church where the (aforementioned) apparition occurred in Christchurch, New Zealand. This Jericho Walk entailed prayerfully marching on my own, round the church a number of times (some multiple of seven). I was not intending that the walls come crashing down. I was doing it to encourage a revival of Catholicism locally.
Came the great earthquake of February 2011, which flattened two cathedrals and many churches, but not this one, though it destroyed the adjacent presbytery.
As a result of the continued quakes of which this was just one, I fled several hundred miles north to a small town which is the sunniest in New Zealand.
It was from there that I sent my friend (who had not fled Christchurch) that poem about Our Lady Queen of Prophets.
There is a story about those earthquakes and those cathedrals, but here is not the place.
Suffice it to say that I was instantly hooked on the Book of Truth, and I have been a remnant disciple ever since, living through an apocalypse that I never thought I would personally experience, though the Christchurch quakes were a foretaste.
But this is not the place for recounting that, except to say that I feel the Christchurch quakes were a parable about the destruction of Christ’s Church.