Who is Julia Kim?
Julia Kim was born in 1947 in Naju, a city of about 80,000 near the South-western tip of the Korean peninsula. Her father was a teacher of Chinese literature. During the Korean War, in the early 1950s, the father and grandfather perished, together with Julia's younger sister. The years that followed were years of hardship and poverty for her and her mother. Julia could not even complete her secondary education. PICTURE: The Kim family and their four children. They also have two grandchildren.
In 1972, she married Julio Kim, a civic employee of the city of Naju. The Kims had embraced the Christian faith in one of the Protestant churches. Early in her married life, Julia fell victim to various serious illnesses including cancer. Her life became an existence of extreme pain and suffering.
Julia was near death when the Kims were visited by a Catholic priest friend. As the priest prayed over Julia, she received an anointing of the Holy Spirit and was healed completely. The Kims began taking instructions in the Catholic faith, and were received on Easter Sunday, 1982. By now Julia had opened a successful beauty salon. She and her husband both became zealous and active Catholics. Julio was presently in charge of the eno-catechurnenate program in their Naju parish.
In 1982, Julia was called to share in the cross of Christ through new sufferings. This was in preparation for the mission the Lord was preparing for her, to suffer in reparation for the sins of our society and especially for the sins of abortion.
On June 30, 1985, the Kims had been visiting a poor village north of Naju. When they returned home before midnight, Julia began to pray the rosary before a statue of the Blessed Virgin, when she noticed tear drops in the eyes of the statue. Two weeks later, July 18, 1985, she received her first message. On October 19, 1986, the statue began to weep tears of blood. On February 4, 1988, Julia received the stigmata. Eventually the statue began to ooze a fragrant oil, which ceased October 23, 1994. Julia experienced the first Eucharistic miracle on June 5, 1988.
In March 1991, Julia was invited with her husband to the United States to address one of the first Marian conferences, this one in Pittsburgh. She gave witness to the evil and sinfulness of abortion. It was there that I first met her. I had come to the conference to translate for Josyp Terelya — a Ukrainian Catholic confessor of the faith who spent 22 years in Soviet prison camps. On Sunday March 25, the three of us, Julia Kim, Josyp Terelya and I were invited to preside at the coronation of the statue of Our Lady of Fatima after the consecration of all present to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This was the beginning of a friendship that would be renewed in September 1994, when Julia visited Toronto.
The Eucharistic miracles of Naju continued, now in the parish church on May 16, 1991, and in the Marian chapel in Naju thereafter. They continue in a variety of forms to the present. The seventh Eucharistic miracle was witnessed by the Apostolic Pro-Nuncio to Korea, Archbishop Giovanni Buleitis, in the Marian chapel.
During her 1994 visit to Toronto, Julia invited me to the tenth anniversary of the first weeping of the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary on June 30,1995. It was only in September 1995 that I was able to keep my promise, an appointment with heaven. Our group — Catherine Lee, a Canadian Korean, Fr. Joseph Finn from London, Ontario, and myself — arrived on Thursday, September 14, at Kwangju airport, where Julia was waiting for us. As we embraced, we were enveloped in the fragrance of roses that often accompanies Julia. We continued by car to Naju, arriving at 9 p.m. in time for the Holy Hour of prayer before the miraculous statue. Around 200 men and women, children and infants were already waiting.
The next day we made it to a large valley in the Naju Mountains. We celebrated Holy Mass at 6 p.m., A week later, September 22, we returned to that area,
The Blessed Virgin had led the Kims to this mountain retreat and asked them to acquire this land. She promised that a beautiful Church would be built there. As in the case of St. Bernadette, she instructed Julia to dig in the hillside, and water sprang from the earth: a new Lourdes in the land of the rising run.
Why was a photographer present, some people have asked? The answer is quite simple. I was welcomed as a most honoured guest. I was the first bishop, and that of the Eastern Catholic Church, to celebrate the heavenly visitations. I needn't elaborate on the Korean hospitality Julia and the women lavished upon me, including a lunch in my honour. Naturally, there were cameras present, including one carried by young Sebastian. It's as simple as that.
After the late lunch we made our way to the valley. The men and women about seventeen in all, set up the open-air chapel. What occurred next is explained in the May issue (see Miracle story)..
It was only later that evening, when Fr. Finn and I were drafting our first testimony to this miracle of a tiny palpitating heart on the tongue of Julia, that we viewed both the amateur video and photographs of Sebastian. He had been snapping pictures once he realized that something was happening. By comparing photos and experience, we could ascertain that this little heart was about 5 millimetres thick.
Julia remained rapt in prayer and ecstasy
when Jesus Himself spoke to her. His voice made itself heard to Julia even
though she could not see Him, at once warm and loving and full of dignity
and majesty. This was the message:
|"My beloved little soul. My most holy Mother is the greatest treasure in the Church... My Mother is the Queen of the Universe and also your Mother... Today my Mother is now showing and revealing My Heart to a bishop, who seeks to follow Me and My Mother, ..so that he can make ever more known that I am truly present in the Eucharist, the sublime mystery of faith and love.|
This was the eleventh Eucharistic Miracle of Naju, September 22, 1995. All information is now in the hands of a Commission of Korean bishops who are investigating the events and who will report some time in the future.
Naju and History
By Bishop Roman Danylak and Fr. Joseph Finn
In our May 1996 issue we presented Bishop Danylak's affidavit and Fr. Joseph Finn's description of what happened at Naju, Korea, on September 22, 1995. Below we print some further reflections by Bishop Danylak and Fr. Finn.
Two questions have been raised. The Council of Trent teaches us that it is the glorified and immutable body of Christ that is present in the Eucharist. How can the Eucharist bleed and change into living, bleeding flesh? Secondly, what purpose is there to such a miracle?
Eucharistic miracles in history.
The history of the Church records more than one hundred and sixty recorded and approved miracles associated with the Eucharist. I shall present only two, which record the change of the Eucharist host into bleeding flesh: the miracles of Lanciano and Bolsena in Italy.
At the beginning of the eighth-century, a Basilian monk of Lanciano (near Chieti, on the Adriatic coast of Italy, approx. 100 miles to the East of Rome) was tormented by doubts after pronouncing the words of consecration. Before his eyes the Sacred Host visibly changed into flesh, except in the center where the sacramental species remained intact. The consecrated wine changed into a bright red blood, which coagulated into five small clots. This miraculous host and blood have been preserved to the present day. The Holy See commissioned a group of scientists for laboratory research in 1970. The Osservator Romano on April 3, 1971, reported their findings, which confirmed that the blood is real blood and the flesh is real flesh. Both belong to the same person and the flesh is from the heart, composed of cardiac muscle tissue.
(For a more complete report, see the May 1972 issue of Immaculata, Kenosh, Wisc.)
The second miracle adduced is the story of the monk, Peter of Prague. It was the time of the Eucharistic controversies of the thirteenth century. Peter was celebrating Mass in the Church of Saint Christina in Bolsena (a town at the banks of the homonymous lake, is situated at about half the arial distance between Rome and Siena) in 1263. He was assailed by doubts in the truth of the Eucharist. He continued to celebrate. As he pronounced the words of the host, the unleavened bread turned into flesh and began to bleed profusely.
News reached Rome quickly and the Pontiff, Pope Urban IV, who was in the neighbouring town of Orvieto at the time, set out for Bolsena. The local bishop was bringing the miraculous host in procession. When the Pope and the Bishop met at the bridge over the river at the entrance to Orvieto, the Pope fell to his knees in adoration of the Eucharistic Lord, whose bleeding Eucharistic Body lay on the corporal. The corporal has been preserved in the Orvieto cathedral to the present day. The following year, August 1264, the Pope instituted the feast of Corpus Christi in honour of the Blessed Sacrament and he commissioned St. Thomas Aquinas to write the office. St. Thomas authored the hymns 0 Salutaris Hostia, Tantum Ergo and Adoro te Devote.
The Church has acknowledged the authenticity of these Eucharistic miracles, as it has, in a preliminary fashion, acknowledged such miracles with bleedings of the Eucharist in Venezuela and elsewhere in this decade. Although the diocesan commission of Kwangju has not yet spoken on the twelve Eucharistic miracles that have taken place in association with Julia Kim, two bishops, Archbishop Giovanni Buleitis, the papal pro-nuncio to Korea and I have authenticated our own experiences. Archbishop Buleitis has been following the other events of Naju and has favourably recommended them to Pope John Paul II.
To the astonishment and dismay of the sceptics since September 22, 1995, the Holy Father himself has become privy to the same miracle of the Eucharistic host becoming a living heart during the celebration of Mass in his papal chapel in the Vatican on October 5, 1995, when Julia Kim received communion from his hands. Although the Pope has not spoken himself of this as yet, the most recent publication in English in the messages and miracles of Naju includes the report on the Vatican miracle and includes the text of the messages.
To what purpose?
The second question is, to what end or purpose. First, out of His infinite compassion for us, for the countless numbers who had and continue to have problems with the Catholic doctrine of the Eucharist, Jesus gives His heavenly confirmation: the Eucharist is truly the Body and Blood of Christ, present under the species of bread and wine.
Secondly, in Naju, Jesus gives the miracles of the weeping and bleeding statue of His Blessed Mother, and now His own Eucharistic miracles, to confirm the authenticity of the heavenly messages communicated to us through Julia Kim. Heaven is serious in its warnings and call to penance, to return to the found of Divine Mercy before it is too late. These miracles, are the appeal of Divine Mercy to forgive our sins and to save us, even at this eleventh hour, from the horrendous punishments for sins, not only of the world, but also of the Church and her members.
is growing loss of faith and apostasy among those claiming to be Catholics.
He laments over his priests:
|"If my priest who celebrate Mass daily would truly believe in and seek to experience this Presence with their whole heart and would live the sublime and marvelous Divine Reality... innumerable souls would be purified and would live in My merciful heart with a grace that is beyond all expectation."|
Private but observable
The events around Julia, her messages and the phenomena, are private revelations that must be discerned by the Church. The weeping and bleeding in tears of the statue of the Virgin, though of the order of private revelation, are first and foremost observable phenomena, which can be submitted to scientific examination.
The Eucharist, which changed into the flesh of the human heart and blood, is also an observable phenomenon. At the same time, it is also a reality to be accepted by faith. We believe with faith that every host and drop of wine that has been validly consecrated is the Body and Blood of Our Lord. The consecrated species are signs of the substantial presence of the living Christ. All these are supernatural events that could be realized only by the power of God, present in the mystery of Christ in the Eucharist.
There is one last lesson to be learned from this Eucharistic miracle of Naju. Jesus has chosen to transform the host, a sign of the Divine Bread, into the sign of His love, the heart. He appeared to Saint Gertrude in the middle ages and to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque in the seventeenth century, to reveal to them the mystery of His love by showing them His heart. In these our times, Jesus has chosen to reveal to us that the living reality of that Heart so loved us: and not only of His own heart, but the dynamic and living love of the Blessed Trinity.