Paris, December 10th , 1992.
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
This circular will meet the needs of the numerous readers of my two French books ('Soufanieh' and 'Souvenez-vous de Dieu') as well as the needs of my pen friends. The book "Soufanieh" stops on September 14th, 1990. Therefore, here is in brief an update of this spiritual phenomenon (from September 1990 to November 1992). I hasten to advise you that I do it with an immense joy and a deep gratitude for all those who have requested it.
I specially owe these rewards to dear father Joseph Malouli who has spontaneously appointed himself as "secretary of Our Lady of Soufanieh".
At the Marian sanctuary of Our Lady of Sednaya, towards midnight, while Myrna was praying the Acathist with some accompanying friends and a nun from the convent, oil exuded from her hands and fell on the ground.
While coming out of the Maronite church, the newly wed Nadim Obgid and Naila Sayegh came directly to Soufanieh. Father Elias Zahlaoui was waiting for them. They prayed with Myrna and oil exuded from her hands.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands while she was praying with fathers Adel Khoury from Germany and Elias Zahlaoui, in Kassab, a village located 430 kilometres north-west of Damascus.
On the terrace of the Apparitions, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna in front of the Maronite bishop of Damascus, Mgr. Hamid Mourani who was very much moved. His friend father Adel Khoury accompanied him. Bishop Mourani related this event in a written testimony.
Towards midnight, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna in Soufanieh, in front of Mr. Maged Ghrayeb, his wife and a relative who all came to pray.
Around 12.30, at the end of a common prayer celebrated in the house of Mr. George Chaoui, oil exuded abundantly from the picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh, which was held by Myrna.
As if to seal the reconciliation of a group of faithful, during a common prayer in Soufanieh, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna.
Fawaz Hazim and Majd Saad, two young men came very simply to Soufanieh with a group of friends to celebrate their engagement. At the end, Myrna was breaking into a song when her hands exuded oil. Deep emotion for the young betrothed and joy for all present.
Towards midday, Mgr. Nicolas Hajj, Greek-Catholic bishop from Lebanon, came to pray in Soufanieh, in the company of father Zahlaoui. They sang an anthem to the Virgin Mary. The oil exuded from Myrna’s hands. The bishop was elated. He promised to write his testimony. We are still waiting for it.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands in the afternoon, while praying at the request of a visitor
A prayer which started at 8.22 p.m., at the house of Leila, Nicolas’ sister, ended at 9.04 p.m. Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna. At 9.10 p.m., oil also oozed from the icon. Farid Nakhl, the husband of Leila, as well as Leila, Myrna, Nicolas, Helen wife of the late Awad, her daughter Alice and her son Elias, the spouse of Mounir Nazzour, Mrs. Carmen Bitar, Myriam and Jean-Emmanuel were present.
A solemn mass was held at the chapel of the Lazarist fathers in Damascus, to celebrate the eighth anniversary of Soufanieh. The crowd was huge and there was an intense atmosphere of prayer. Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands and fell on the ground, just after she received the Holy Communion. Many people wept at this sight. All were anointed with this oil.
Eve of the eighth anniversary. The crowd had filled the house and extended into the street, early in the afternoon. Prayer started around 4 p.m. There were many priests, among which specially father Francesco Van der Voort, parish priest of Brasschaat in Belgium. Just before 6 p.m., Myrna went into ecstasy and oil exuded abundantly from her face and hands. The ecstasy lasted twenty minutes. When coming out of it, Myrna affirmed that she saw the Virgin Mary who dictated to her the following message, of course in Arabic:
'Do not fear my daughter if I tell you that you are seeing Me for the last time until the feast (of Easter) is unified. Therefore, tell My children: "Do they want or not to see and remember the wounds of My Son in you? If it does not pain them to see that you are suffering doubly, I Myself, am a Mother, and it pains Me to see My son suffering repeatedly". Remain in peace, remain in peace, My daughter, come so that He may give you peace, so that you may spread it among the people. As for the oil, it will continue to manifest itself on your hands to glorify My son Jesus, whenever He wishes and wherever you go. We are with you and with everyone who wishes the Feast (of Easter) to be one.'
(The words in parentheses serve only to clarify the translation from the original arabic)
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands, in Soufanieh, while receiving the Holy Communion, during the mass celebrated by father Francesco Van der Voort.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands at the end of a meeting held in the Maronite church in Damascus. The participants were the people in charge and the students of the catechistical centre of that church.
While Myrna was singing a hymn on the unity of the Church, oil exuded from her hands in the St. George church in Midane, a Greek Catholic parish of Damascus, in the presence of a big crowd, on the occasion of reciting a prayer for the Immaculate Conception. That same day, oil exuded from Myrna’s hands a second time at 12:38, in the presence of the Nuncio’s Secretary in Damascus, Mgr. Serapion Bambonanire. The latter had come to Soufanieh to bring a greeting card from the previous nuncio, Mgr. Nicola Rotunno, to Myrna and Nicolas. In that card, he was requesting a prayer for his intention, because he was about to take a very important decision. That same day also, oil exuded from Myrna’s hands in the presence of two French priests, around 5 p.m. in the reception room of Soufanieh. These two priests and brothers are Pierre and Raymond-Marie Jaccard. Both have related this episode in writing.
During the mass celebrated by the brothers Jaccard in Soufanieh, around 7 p.m., oil exuded abundantly from Myrna’s hands. This happened at the time of the offertory, and not after the Holy Communion, as had happened several times. The brothers Jaccard recounted this event in writing.
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna after the Holy Communion, during a mass celebrated in Soufanieh by the brothers Jaccard. There were more than eighty people who took the Holy Communion. The brothers Jaccard have also related this event in writing.
At the end of the mass which was celebrated around 4 p.m. at Mr. Michel Jarallah’s house, by the Jaccard brothers, oil exuded from Myrna’s hands, at the time when father Pierre was speaking about the unity of Christians. The Jaccard brothers have once more related this event in writing.
Towards 1.05 a.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hand, in front of about twenty persons, gathered for a vigil of prayers at the dawn of the New Year.
Around 1.30 p.m., while Myrna, Nicolas, Maged Ghrayeb and other people were praying in front of the miraculous icon, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna.
At the end of a prayer improvised by a group of faithful who came to pray after the daily common prayer, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna.
At 8:27 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna at the end of a prayer destined to the newlyweds; Amer, Myrna’s brother and Sawsan his wife. All present were anointed with the oil.
Oil exuded abundantly from Myrna’s hands at 11.30 p.m., while praying.
H. E. Nuncio Luigi Accogli invites Myrna and Nicolas for the anniversary mass of his ordination. Were present the Austrian ambassador, the Yugoslavian ambassador, his wife and step-daughter. As soon as Myrna took the Holy Communion, oil exuded from her hands. This took place at the Nuncio’s oratory.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands at the house of Mr. Nazih Raad in Khabab. This event was documented in writing.
Oil exuded from the three fingers of Myrna’s left hand, in Khabab, once more at the house of Mr. Nazih Raad (thumb, middle finger and index). This is the third time that only three fingers exude oil since the beginning of the phenomenon of Soufanieh.
At 11.13 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, at the end of a prayer organised in Soufanieh by some faithful.
On the occasion of Myrna’s 27th anniversary, a small feast was organised at 8.10 p.m.. Just after singing 'Happy Birthday to you', oil exuded from Myrna’s hands.
At 8.11 p.m., Myrna’s hands exuded oil at the end of a prayer organised in the house of Mr. Ibrahim Choukri, on the occasion of the anniversary of the oozing of oil from an icon of Our Lady of Soufanieh, in his own house.
At 10 a.m., oil exuded abundantly from the hands of Myrna, in the presence of two Syrian-Orthodox bishops, Mgr. Matta Rohom ( bishop of Hassaké in Syria) and Mgr. Sawiros Jamil Hawa (bishop of Baghdad, Iraq). The Bishop of Baghdad wept. The oil exuded once more from the hands of Myrna around 3 p.m., in front of a Muslim family, well before prayer time.
At 5.40 p.m., Myrna’s hands exuded oil in front of a Lebanese group, praying in Soufanieh.
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, in the presence of a large gathering of worshipers and of the Italian Salesian Sisters of Salhié, in their own chapel.
At 4.35 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, in presence of a Lebanese group who came to pray in Soufanieh.
The Nuncio’s secretary in Damascus, Mgr. Serapion Bambonanire, came to bid farewell to Our Lady of Soufanieh, before his departure for Cameroun. He was accompanied by Mr. Tippenhawer from the U.N. We were on the terrace when Myrna arrived. We have prayed together and between 5.30 and 5.35 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna. They had arrived at 4 p.m..
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna on the terrace of the Apparitions at 8.55 p.m. in front of the Sara family from Canada. Were present Mary Sara and her two sons aged 16 and 18 years old, her brother Elias and Mrs. Leila Nazzour Nakhl.
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna around 11 p.m., while praying.
At 6.56 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands during a prayer offered in front of the miraculous icon for the intentions of Mr. Simon Ajami’s young daughter who had been baptised on the previous Sunday 28/7.
Having left Damascus that morning at 5 o’clock for Amman (Jordan), Myrna came back by plane at 11.00 p.m.. During that day, oil exuded from her hands four times, always during prayer.
At 7.17 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands at the end of a prayer organised for the Feast of Transfiguration.
On their way to Jabboulé (Lebanon) to visit the convent of the nuns of Bon Service, Myrna and Nicolas stopped in Zahlé. There, during a prayer for a sick child, the hands of Myrna exuded oil.
In Jabboulé, Myrna’s hands exuded oil in front of several bishops one of whom was Mgr. Salim Boustros (bishop of Baalbeck, Lebanon), priests, nuns and laity. A video cassette was taken. Myrna and Nicolas returned to Damascus towards 5.55 p.m.. At the end of the common prayer, Myrna’s hands exuded oil in front of a huge crowd.
At the invitation of the Nuncio, Mgr. Luigi Accogli, Nicolas and Myrna went to the Nunciature. The mass started at 6 p.m. After Holy communion, the hands of Myrna exuded oil. Were present : a representative from the German embassy, the ambassador of Czechoslovakia and his family. After the mass, the latter and his family came to visit Soufanieh.
At 7.30 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, on the occasion of the betrothal of one of the daughters of Mr. Nazih Raad.
Monday 9/9 – Thursday 3/10
Myrna and Nicolas, accompanied by their young son Jean-Emmanuel, fathers Paul Fadel and Elias Zahlaoui, Mr. Antoine Makdisi and Mr. Adib Mousleh, leave Damascus for a trip which will take them to Germany, Holland, Belgium and France. At Münster, a theological colloquium on Soufanieh, was organised by the dean of the faculty of Theology in Münster, father Professor Adel Khoury. This colloquium lasted three days. It was followed by series of encounters and prayers, in those four countries. During that tour, oil manifested itself twenty-six times from the hands of Myrna and once on the picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh. I have briefly reported this fact, in writing. Whoever wishes to obtain a copy of this report should not hesitate to write to me.
Just before 7.15 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands onto her dress and the ground, on the occasion of her daughter Myriam’s fifth anniversary.
At 7.15 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands during a visit to Mr. Cesar Sargi’s mother-in-law who was bedridden at the St. Louis hospital, room 19.
At 7 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, during a prayer in Soufanieh, just after the wedding of her sister Diana, which was celebrated in the church of Our Lady of Damascus.
On the occasion of the 9th anniversary of Soufanieh, a solemn mass is celebrated in the chapel of the Lazarist fathers. It started at 11 a.m. and ended at 12.45 p.m.. Father Zahlaoui was celebrating the mass accompanied by the " Chœur-Joie " choir. After Holy Communion, oil exuded abundantly from the hands of Myrna. It was about 12.35 p.m.. All persons present were anointed with the oil.
Oil exuded twice from the hands of Myrna. The first time at 5.20 p.m. in front of the youngsters of father Elias Zahlaoui's parish. They had invited him so as to ask him a few questions. Intense emotion. The second time, it was at the Nunciature towards 6.15 p.m., in front of the Nuncio and the Italian ambassador.
Ninth anniversary of the Soufanieh phenomenon. Prayers started at 4.30 p.m. with the Rosary and ended around 11.00 p.m., with moments of pause. Towards 7 p.m., oil inundated the face of Myrna, who was standing up at the entrance of the living room, under the eyes of a prayerful crowd. Intense emotion. Oil also exuded abundantly from Myrna’s hands.
Towards midnight, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna on the occasion of a prayer held in front of the miraculous icon.
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna at 11.40 p.m., in the home of Mr. Farid Nakhl, brother-in-law of Nicolas, while praying at the end of an evening to which we were invited. The attendees were father George Gage, Rumanian Orthodox priest from Chicago who came with his wife for the 9th anniversary, father Joseph Malouli, Myrna, Nicolas and his mother Alice, Mr. Michel Zenie and his wife as well as, of course, Mr. Farid Nakhl and his wife.
Towards 7.20 p.m., at the end of a prayer of adoration held at the Petites Sœurs de Jésus, in their minuscule underground chapel, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna. Besides sisters Françoise and Nicole, father Paul Fadel, Mr. Michel Jarallah, his daughter Rita and his sister Antoinette were present.
Celebration of a mass in the church of St. George at Bab-Al-Moussalla, by father Elias Zahlaoui. The mass was followed by the Service of the Virgin Mary which Myrna concluded with a hymn during which oil exuded abundantly from her hands.
On the occasion of a visit by the Councillor of the ministry of Defence, Myrna and Nicolas went up with the latter onto the terrace of the apparitions. There, around 1 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna on to the floor and the steps of the staircase.
Towards 12.05 p.m., in Soufanieh, was held the baptism of Joseph, son of dentist surgeon Jean Akzam. It was celebrated by Mgr. Boulos Bourkhoche, assisted by fathers Michel Zammar, Paul Fadel and Elias Zahlaoui. Oil exuded abundantly from the hands of Myrna at the time of the procession hymn.
Towards 1.45 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands, at the time of the prayer recited on the corpse of Mrs. Chams, wife of Mr. Jean Barbara. She had died the day before at the St. Louis hospital. Her corpse had just been brought home.
At 11.20 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, at the time of prayer, in Soufanieh, to celebrate Christmas.
At 9.00 p.m., prayers of repentance and of thanksgiving, for the year ended 1991 were held. It was bitterly cold but there are many people present. At 9.50 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands.
At the end of a prayer vigil which lasted from 9.22 p.m. to 11.00 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands at 10.57 p.m.
Towards 1.30 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna which she was praying on the corpse of Mrs. Elias Mouhassel, born Marie-Rose Barbara, in the house of the deceased.
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna at 12.15 p.m., at the end of a prayer organised in the house of the newlywed couple Fawaz Hazim and Majd Saad, in Jaramana.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands, while she was praying at the bedside of one of her relatives who was seriously ill, in Beirut. She had arrived there that same morning , by car, with Mrs. Houda Mouacher.
Oil exuded twice from the hands of Myrna. In the morning, while praying in front of the miraculous icon, with Mrs. Mouacher and her daughter. Then at 7.15 p.m., on the occasion of a prayer offered for the intentions of the newlyweds Roulana Halaby and Fady Nafach. Their marriage had just been celebrated at the Greek-Orthodox church of the Holy Cross. The newlyweds, their relatives and friends were, of course, all present in Soufanieh. It is worth reminding that the mother of Roulana (Chams Al-Halaby) had been cured in Soufanieh, from a paralysis in the arm, on December 2nd,1982. This arm is still in perfect shape.
In answer to the wish of Mr. Antoine Khoury, of Egypt, who had just arranged for the printing of 12000 pictures of Our Lady of Soufanieh, for free distribution, Myrna prayed in front of the miraculous icon. She was holding in her hand, two of the pictures that Mr. Khoury had sent. Fathers Paul Fadel and Elias Zahlaoui as well as a number of faithful were participating to that prayer. At the end of it, oil covered the chest of the Virgin Mary and on the hand of Jesus, on the "large image". It also oozed on the small one. The hands of Myrna were totally dry.
Prayer meeting, at the convent of the Paulist fathers in Jaramana, a southern outskirts of Damascus. Father Paul Fadel, father Superior, father Elias Zahlaoui, many nuns of the Bon Service, two seminarians and, of course, Myrna were attending. During the hymn which concluded this prayer, oil covered Myrna’s hands.
A very simple mass was held in a hotel room by father Gérard Midon, Superior of the Grand Séminaire of Nancy (France). He had arrived in Damascus on the 18th, accompanied by five seminarians (Bruno, Dominique, Jean, José, Mathieu), to visit Soufanieh. This mass was attended by Myrna and her two children, her mother, army general Mounir Kaada and his wife, as well as father Elias Zahlaoui. During Holy Communion, Myrna’s hands were covered with oil. Intense emotion. That same evening, father Gérard Midon was giving me his written testimony, duly signed by his five seminarians. That same evening, they left Damascus for France.
Mother’s feast day in Syria. Two groups of prayer have come to pray at different times during that feast, in front of the miraculous icon. A third group was praying with a family from Jordan and whose son had been miraculously cured, earlier on, by Our Lady of Soufanieh. The mother was narrating that episode to the people present. That is when oil inundated the two hands of Myrna. It was 6.35 p.m.
The nephew of Myrna, Jean, son of Amer is being baptised. Father Paul Fadel celebrates. Many relatives and friends were attending, as well as fathers Joseph Malouli and Elias Baladi. At 8i.05 p.m., oil covers the hands of Myrna.
Myrna and Nicolas are invited by the Nuncio to attend a mass that he celebrates in his private chapel, in the presence of the Italian ambassador and his wife as well as many of the Salesian Sisters of Damascus. At 6.45 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, onto the carpeting of the chapel, at the time when she was receiving the Holy Communion.
Father Francisco Van der Voort, visiting Damascus, celebrates mass in Soufanieh, in presence of numerous worshippers. During Holy Communion, oil covered her hands.
Myrna was coming back from Lebanon to Damascus in the car of Mr. Raji Mouacher who was there with his wife. At the request of Mr. Mouacher, Myrna was relating the events of Soufanieh. Just before reaching Damascus, oil covered her hands.
Second anniversary of the apparition of oil on the picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh in the home of Mr. Ibrahim Choukr. It is celebrated in prayer. Many relatives and friends were attending, among which Myrna as well as Mr. Georges Ain Malak and the French film producer of Tunisian origin, Zouheir Latif. The latter was preparing a documentary on Soufanieh. During the rosary, oil covered the hands of Myrna. The assistant of Mr. Latif was so moved that he nearly fainted. One had to throw water on his face. He told me the story himself that same evening.
At 8.30 p.m., the French group led by Mr. Pedrocchi Pellegrino attends in Soufanieh the mass celebrated by their chaplain. This was followed by songs and hymns which lasted until 10 p.m. At 9.40 p.m., oil covered Myrna’s hands. Everyone was anointed with it.
In the afternoon, oil covered twice the hands of Myrna: once, at the church of the Salesian Sisters in Salhié, where father Nagib Chennekgi had invited Myrna, so that she could tell the faithful, during prayer for the Marian month, what she had experienced in Soufanieh. During the mass, just after the Holy Communion, oil appeared on Myrna's hands. Another time was when Myrna visited bedridden sister Fiorina. Oil appeared while she was praying with her.
Oil appeared twice on the hands of Myrna: once just after the baptism of young Myriam, daughter of Joseph Haddad, a relative of Myrna, living in Detroit, United States. It was father Zahlaoui who celebrated the baptism. Myrna was the godmother. As soon as the ceremony of baptism ended, Myriam’s mother took back her daughter from the hands of her godmother Myrna. This is when the oil appeared on her hands. Another time was on a picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh, Myrna was holding in her hands while praying for the intentions of a sick little girl, with a group of faithful.
Towards 8.15 a.m., Myrna, Nicolas, their children, Khalil (brother of Nicolas), Lina, his wife and their son Elias depart for the convent of St. Moses the Ethiopian, located 100 kilometres north-east of Damascus, with the Italian restorer of the convent, father Paulo. At 3.30 p.m., after the mass, oil oozed from her hands in abundance, while she was singing a hymn. Father Paulo has related this fact and his personal testimony, in writing. They went back to Soufanieh that same evening towards 7.15 p.m.
Trip to Rableh, near Homs, to attend the ordination of a brother of father Rizkallah Semaan and the wedding of another brother. The two ceremonies took place during the same mass. After Holy Communion, oil exuded from the hands of Myrna. The father requested the nuns sitting beside her who became aware of the oil, not to say anything in order not to disturb the atmosphere of prayer. It was 11.45a.m.
That day, oil appeared twice on the hands of Myrna: the first time at the end of the common prayer, at 6.55 p.m. The second time, at 10 p.m. in Jaramana, during the prayer concluding the meeting held at father Paul Fadel’s.
Myrna is invited with her husband Nicolas by father Elias Yacoub, vicar of Khrab, located on the Syrian coast line between Barrias and Tartous. Around twenty persons accompany them from Damascus. Mass is celebrated by the Maronite bishop, Mgr. Antoine Torbay, in front of thousands of worshipers. At the end of the mass, the priest invited Myrna to show the crowd the enlarged picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh. While he was talking about it, oil oozed with such abundance that everyone was able to be anointed with it. Father Elias Yacoub related this fact, in writing.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands in the house of Mr. Yacoub Fattout, around 9.30 p.m. His relatives as well as Miss Kinda Haddad were present.
Oil covered Myrna’s hands during a ceremony of repentance organised by a group of university students. Father Paul Fadel was preaching to them during a retreat in the summer home of the Sœurs de la Charité in Zabadani, 50 kilometres west of Damascus.
The hands of Myrna exuded oil in front of a group of Egyptians, on the terrace of the apparitions. Some have wept. It happened after the common prayer, towards 7 p.m.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands, during the daily common prayer, after the reading of the Gospel and Christ’s message given on 7/9/88. The patio of the house was full of worshippers.
At 12.40 p.m., oil exuded from Myrna’s hands, at the Al-Assadi hospital, onto the corpse of Mr. Joseph Mesmar, in presence of his son Bassam, his son-in-law, Mr. Fouad Takla and many friends and nurses.
Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, at the church of St. Maron, in Jounieh (Lebanon). The crowd had overflowed into the streets who had been adorned with calicoes bearing Soufanieh messages.
Towards 9.25 p.m., oil covered Myrna’s hands after the prayer which concluded a film session on Soufanieh, in the church of the village of Kraya, near Souéda, 110 kilometres South of Damascus.
A prayer was held on the terrace of the apparitions for the intentions of Myriam, Myrna’s daughter and whose birthday was celebrated two days before. Abundant exudation of oil from the hands of Myrna.
At 10.40 p.m., oil exuded from the hands of Myrna, at the end of a prayer for a cancer ridden woman. The exudation took place in the house of General Michel Haddad.
Oil exuded from Myrna’s hands in Rayak, Lebanon, in the church of Our Lady, full of people. This church had been deserted long ago. Myrna was accompanied by father Farès Macaron, a Lebanese man from Rayak.
Tenth anniversary of Soufanieh. I was at the time in New Jersey at the house of my friend Roland Ghanem, native of Damascus. On the telephone, Myrna tells me that the Nuncio will celebrate mass in Soufanieh that same evening at 11.00 p.m. and that H.E. Mgr. Isidore Baattikha, new Greek-Catholic patriarchal vicar of Damascus, would celebrate the anniversary mass the next day in the church of the Lazarist fathers.
Still in New Jersey, I phone Damascus to hear Myrna tell me the following: H.E. the apostolic nuncio has indeed celebrated mass in Soufanieh. After the celebration, oil inundated my two hands and the ones of the nuncio, at the very moment in which I was holding his hand to wish him a happy anniversary, since the nuncio was celebrating that day his Episcopal silver jubilee. Intense emotion on the part of the nuncio. H.E. Mgr. Isidore Battikha has indeed celebrated mass at the Lazarist fathers in Damascus. This mass was served and sung by the choir of the church of Our Lady of Damascus, "Chœur-Joie". Oil exuded from the hands of Myrna under the eyes of Mgr. Isidore Battikha. H.E. the apostolic nuncio held a cocktail to celebrate his Episcopal silver jubilee, in the Nunciature itself. During that reception, he distributed to his guests the picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh in memory of this jubilee.
My dear brothers and sisters in Christ;
This "list", which is indeed repetitive in appearance, meets, I am sure, the expectations of many. In fact, it is the proof, if we still need one, of the tenacious and salvational love of Jesus and Mary, for all people. You will certainly rejoice to notice that in answer to the "fidelity" of Our Mother Mary to Her promise of 26 November 1990, your brothers and sisters from Syria reciprocate by a "fidelity" to a daily and continuous prayer, made especially of thanksgiving, praise and supplication. Supplication for peace in the world and for the unity of the church.
Should I add that absolute gratuity is still prevailing in Soufanieh?
Here are, to conclude, some news which will rejoice your heart with ours:
Here and there, in Damascus as elsewhere, pictures of Our Lady of Soufanieh ooze oil, thus provoking a return to prayer or an increase in the intensity of prayer.
Apart from the 12000 pictures of Our Lady of Soufanieh, printed and distributed free of charge in Egypt, we have an additional 32000 pictures of different shapes and dimensions, printed in Damascus and of course, distributed gratuitously.
Shortly, booklets containing the messages will be printed as well, in Damascus, for free distribution.
Let me also mention that "my" two books on Soufanieh, which were published by l’O.E.I.L. (27, rue de l’Abbé Grégoire, Paris 75006, France), bring me a voluminous mail which is a treasure of faith and joy.
What about Myrna, would you ask me? What is becoming of her, in all that?
Well, believe me, Myrna behaves as if all this was none of her concern. She is always simple and unobtrusive, answering spontaneously the call of prayer wherever it comes from and returning to her home like any other young mother in the world. And yet, the invitations that are addressed to her are becoming more and more insisting and numerous: from the United States, Peru, Brazil, France, Rumania….
Every evening, she prays with the crowd, in the patio of The House of the Virgin, together with her husband Nicolas and her mother-in-law Alice. The latter, despite her small features and her fragile health, makes always sure that the House of the Virgin is clean and welcoming to the visitors of the Virgin…
One last remark: Nicolas has finally found a job which will enable him to earn a living and be continually present at home at the same time. In agreement with his young brother Khalil, a silversmith, he has arranged part of his basement, which is presently the workshop of his brother so that he could now sell the items which are made by his brother. He is very happy with this arrangement.
As for father Joseph Malouli, we are happy to see him younger than ever. He is the precious witness of the events at Soufanieh. His presence there is invaluable.
Finally, I am writing to you from Paris, a few days before my return to Damascus, after having concluded my Marian tour of nearly two months, which led me to France, Canada and the United States.
There I met a considerable number of people who were craving for news of their Mother Mary, Our Lady of Soufanieh. I should mention that one of the "peaks" of my tour, if I could use this expression, was November 8th,1992, which was devoted to Our Lady of Soufanieh, at St. Joseph's Oratory in Montreal, Canada. It has been very well prepared by Mr. Roger Kahil, Mr. André Rostvorowsky and his wife Geneviève. Mr. Rostvorowsky is founder of the Catholic video production organisation Rassemblement à Son Image.
What else? Let us continue to pray, please, all of us for all of us. Let us pray especially for peace in the world and for the unity of the Church. Your brothers and sisters of Soufanieh, in Syria and around the world, give you a prayer rendez-vous every evening at the feet of Jesus and Mary.
I owe many apologies to my many correspondents who must find me "regularly irregular". Please consider this circular as amends for that state of affairs.
We are in the midst of Advent and it will soon be Christmas, God-Emmanuel. May we all live this inexpressible Presence, everyday, through faith, light and love. To all of you, I wish as well a happy New Year, with His full and overflowing Presence.
To each of you, my dear brothers and sisters in Christ, I am happy to express to you once more my friendship and the assurance of my prayer.
Father Elias Zahlaoui
Our Lady of Damascus Parish
Koussour – Damascus
Syria - Tel (963-11-4450.999)