I first met Gwen on the feast
of the Immaculate Heart of Mary at Sutton Monastery St
Helens Shrine of Blessed Dominic Barberi (Apostle of
England). This was June 1989. Gwen invited us to come and
visit her at her home in Mariners Park. We went to see her
September or October that year. She told us that she had be
asked by Herrs Mheering who was head of the German
apostolate to take over the apostolate of Rosa Mystica in
England. At that time Gwen was getting the statues from Mr
Mheering, but because of the big demand, Germany could not
keep up with orders, so he asked Gwen if she could have the
statues made and blessed here in England. This request had
the approval of Maria Rosa Mystica through Pierina Gilli.
The statues where made in Liverpool and Gwen made sure that
they were very beautiful. The blessings took place on the
first Saturday’s in the exact same way as they were blessed
in Montichiari/Fontanelle with an identical service of
prayers and procession, so we are actually united with them
in prayers at the same time. Each blessed statue is then
sent or taken to homes, monasteries, convents, churches and
prisons, and places where she Rosa Mystica is needed, loved
and venerated. Gwen sent many many statues around the world
most especially to the poor people of Africa, India,
Srilanka, Philippines ECT. The only country Gwen did not
send one to was China.
statue of Rosa Mystica in a home in Birmingham between the
25th and the 28th June 1993 wept. The
priest of the parish was informed but due to Illness he sent
a Eucharistic minister. This is his testomy,
Friday June 25th, 1993 I went to visit an elderly
couple bringing holy communion, I witnessed there the
apparent weeping of our blessed lady Rosa Mystica statue,
and the same phenomenon again, when I visited June 28TH
1993. The first time our lady’s faced seemed particularly
drawn and drained as though from protracted suffering, very
different from the normal appearance of the statue. On
Monday a small amount of oily fluid had gathered on our
13th a different Rosa Mystica statue wept, and
omitted perfume in the same home. On December the 30th,
there were traces of blood in the tear that flowed. Several
witnesses where present, on both occasions. Both these
statues where made and blessed in Liverpool.
wept in the heart of England at the same time Sunday was
virtually abolished by the Sunday trade deregulation act (8th
December, 1993). Birmingham was the first British city to
decide to drop all further reference to Christmas.
Madge Tracy from Wigan visits her friends in Tamil Nada in
India. She brings whatever she can because they are very
poor. Her parish priest, Fr Johnson, asked her to bring a
pilgrim Rosa Mystica to a parish in Tamil Nadu. Madge agreed
willingly but would later wonder how she would manage. She
was amazed when perfect strangers gave her money to
accompany the Rosa Mystica, £1,600 altogether.
Say it with
her journey at Jedda in Saudi Arabia, an Islamic Country
officially hostile to the faith. Returning to her room, she
was amazed to find a box containing the Rosa Mystica
surrounded with the heads of pink roses and red carnations
at her feet. Somebody had an understanding of love and
reverence due to the mother of God. By now Madge was
beginning to realise this was no ordinary trip.
the rain fall?
Nadu Madge set out in bicycle rickshaw to deliver the statue
of Father Peter. She was caught in a terrifying monsoon. In
minutes the roads were flooded and the bridge submerged. It
was impossible to go forward or back.
desperation they made for the only light in the darkness. It
was a lighted chapel in which father Baytone and the people
were praying to Our Lady of Perpetual Succour. It was the
Tuesday Novena. Madge knew that this little church in a poor
village was where Rosa Mystica wanted to be.
returned on the Tuesday, still undecided as to what to do
with the £1,600. Fr Baytone took her around his parish and
finally to the hostel ‘Our Lady of the Immaculate
Conception’. They had to cross an open sewer to reach the
hovel in which Father rented two rooms to shelter blind and
deaf boys. It was only what he could afford. Madge’s
indecision disappeared. This was where the £1,600 was to go.
that ends well.
trepidation, Madge returned to Wigan to say that she had
robbed Fr Peter of his statue and money to give it to Fr
Baytone and his blind and deaf boys. The Donors were
delighted, Fr Peter would get his statue next year. Another
donor has offered £16, 7000 for the boys ‘hostel’. Our Lady,
Rosa Mystica, had arranged all the things well and answered
their Novena prayer.
hostel, which has now been built for orphans (mostly blind
and deaf children), has been dedicated to ‘Our Lady, Rosa
For the last
24 years, Gwen arranged with Father Johnson at St Marys
Wigan, to celebrate the feast day of Rosa Mystica on the 13th
July with holy mass, benediction, rosary and procession.
People come from all over the country including Scotland to
join in this most beautiful day for honouring Maria Rosa
Mystica. Gwen dedicated herself whole heartedly to making
Our Lady Rosa Mystica, Mother of the Church known, loved and
honoured. Wherever she went, she never missed an opportunity
to speak of, or give a medal or prayer card of Rosa Mystica.
the blessings at St Lawrence’s, Gwen invited a number of
devotees of Rosa Mystica back to her little flat for
refreshments and chat. She had so much information to tell
us on the devotion and her experiences, and such wisdom on
church matters. This continued when she moved into her
bungalow. I will never forget when she told us she was to
transform her garage into a chapel. She knew exactly how she
wanted it. This is when we started to come over on the 13th
of every month (our Lord asked the 13th to be a
Marian day) to say the prayers to Rosa Mystica and on
occasions we had a priest to say mass for us. She had as
many as 15 people present for prayers. The chapel became a
power house of prayer. Gwen was also so happy to see us, and
never wanted us to go home. This continued religiously up to
about 2 years ago when her health started to deteriorate.
Gwen arranged pilgrimages
to the shrine; the first pilgrimage was in 1990. The first
coach booked unfortunately cancelled last minute, Gwen then
prayed an SOS to Rosa Mystica for another coach. And low and
behold she ended up with the Liverpool Football Clubs luxury
coach. Not only did Gwen take pilgrims, but also statues to
be blessed at the shrine. These statues were plaster and
none were damaged in transit.
Re-wrapping statues after blessing
Blessed statues under the cross of
Gwen praying in the shrine
Gwen walking through the basin of
Rosa Mystica water
Pierina Gilli’s Grave