Monday, July 27, 2020

Glory to God and His Holy Face

Mrs. Merl Africa Tabora in front of the Holy Face in Nampicuan

by Merl Africa Tabora

(originally published in the official publication of the Shrine of the Holy Face of Manoppello Il Volto Santo di Manoppello Vol. CV No. 1 June 2020)

Just having arrived back in Los Angeles. while going through my e-mails, I was excited to read the message that the four-page article on the Holy Face, including an interview with Paul Badde, by the journalist Kathryn Jean Lopez,  which I had sent to the  Archdiocese of Los Angeles news magazine "ANGELUS", would be published in their April 12, 2019 edition.

It moved me so much I cried remembering Tita Daisy Neves who had just moved on to the other life on March 29, 2019. I wish she had lived long enough to see this, that is, to see another miracle and to spread the news on the Holy Face to the 297 parishes in Los Angeles County, numbering 5 million Catholics. Praise to the Lord!

The Holy Face of Manoppello visited the Cathedral of Our Lady of Angels in Los Angeles on September 9, 2015 with Fr Carmine Cucinelli of Manoppello, the rector and custodian of the Holy Face who was going to the Philippines to celebrate the first anniversary of the enthronement of the Holy Face in Nampicuan. He made a long journey through Vancouver, Canada, then continued to the USA to prepare the enthronement of two replicas of the Holy Face in two California cities: San Francisco and Palo Alto, with solemn con-celebrated Masses and audiovisual presentations. 

The writer Paul Badde accompanied him. The rector of the shrine of Manoppello has done three missions abroad and the whole organization was offered by Mrs. Tita Daisy Neves, who was the key person in the spread of devotion to the Holy Face and the first apostle in these lands. Lenlen and Ernest Alzate, the founders of the Nampicuan Dreamers Organization in California and several new apostles and friends of the Holy Face collaborated in Vancouver, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles. There were meetings, miracles and facts that could not be explained. When we needed help, we found it among the devotees of the Holy Face, the human face of God. He, Jesus, left us his Face to remind us that he lived humanly as we did and among us. On the face, imprinted in the veil, you can see bloody blisters, the battered nose, the swollen lips, and the kind eyes, which show us his love, his mercy, and his peace.

 The spread of the Holy Face encountered several obstacles as not everyone immediately welcomed it as a true face of Jesus. Among them was the parish priest of Mrs. Tita Daisy of St. Sophie in Bellevue, Washington, who for years was skeptical and so would not agree to enthrone a copy of the Holy Face in his parish. But Mrs. Tita Daisy did not give up and in the end, a few days before her death she managed to convince her pastor and so a copy of the Holy Face was enthroned in the Adoration Chapel.

Mrs. Daisy Neves was honored by Fr. Carmine Cucinelli with a certificate with which she was awarded with the title "First Missionary of the Holy Face". Currently there are over 30 enthronements in various parts of the world: Philippines, Indonesia, Canada, USA, Italy (Rome), Poland and the list continues to grow every day.

The question that Mrs. Tita Daisy asked herself several times is how it is possible that this sacred image of the human face of Jesus, has been hidden for centuries in this small town of Manoppello.
She had been chosen by the Holy Face to spread his devotion, and this was the voice of her Lord Jesus which she had heard in her heart saying to her: "Look for me and you will find me waiting for you. welcome, I'm here for you."

Evening view of the facade of the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Nampicuan, where a copy of the Holy Face of Manoppello is venerated