One day, while praying in her cell, Sister Veronica had a vision of Jesus. He was carrying His Cross on His Shoulder. He asked her, “What do you wish?” She replied, “That Cross and I wish it for You, for Your Love.” He took the Cross from His Shoulder and placed it on her shoulder. It was too heavy! She fell under the weight of it, and her Lord lifted her.
Still another time, Our Lord appeared to Veronica, covered with open sores, a Crown of Thorns on His Head. Blood spilled from His precious Body, as He said, “See what sinners have done to Me.” Veronica wrote in her Diary:
“Seeing the great agony that my Lord was in, I begged Him to give Me His Crown. He placed it on my head; I suffered so much, I thought I was dying.”
Another time, Jesus came and showed Veronica a Chalice full of liquid. She wrote that it seemed as if the liquid was on fire. The Lord told her, “If you want to be Mine, you must taste this liquid for My Love.” She later wrote that when He placed just a few drops of the liquid on her tongue, she was filled with such indescribable bitterness and sadness, she thought she would die. Her tongue became dry and from that day on, she could not taste anything.
On Christmas Day, the Infant Jesus appeared to Veronica. He sent an arrow deep into her heart. When she awakened, she found her heart bleeding. The burning flame roaring inside her heart was so painful, she could not rest day or night. He told her He wanted her heart to bear the marks of His Wound; He said, her heart had to feel the lance and her feet and hands, the nails He felt on the Cross.
Our Lord chose to make Veronica as much Himself as is possible, and what better way than to share His Passion with her. He had asked her many times what she wished, and she had replied, His Cross. Well on April 5, 1697, Veronica had a vision of Jesus Crucified, accompanied by His Mother Our Lady of Sorrows as she appeared at the foot of the Cross on Golgotha. Veronica’s heart, as with her Savior before her, was pierced. She experienced the crowning of thorns, the scourging, the crucifixion, her own death and that of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Mother Abbess Mary Catherine told us that the other nuns could see the impressions of the crown of thorns on her head through her veil, the blood at times dripping from her eyes because of the deep wounds inflicted by the long sharp thorns. Sealed with this stigmata, Veronica's body became an indelible sign of the Lord’s total communion with her, one of everlasting unity and love. She wrote:
“In an instant, I saw five shining rays shooting out from His Wounds, coming towards me. I watched as they turned into little flames. Four of them (the flames) contained the nails, and the fifth one contained the lance, golden and all aflame, and it pierced my heart. The nails pierced my hands and feet.”
Veronica took the crucifix off the wall in her cell and embraced it saying:
“My Lord, pains with pains, thorns with thorns, sores with sores, here I am all Yours, crucified with You, crowned with thorns with You, wounded with You.”
Veronica takes up the Cross
Veronica received the stigmata. Now it was time for her to take up the Cross! She could not help Jesus carry His Cross, that dark and infamous day He walked to Calvary. He had told her, she would be the bride of the Crucified Savior. Now to be completely one with Him as His bride, in imitation of her Spouse, she would carry her cross each evening. At those times she would wear a robe, lined with sharp long thorns which pierced her body, especially doing damage to the shoulder upon which she carried the cross.13
Laden down by the weight of the cross, she staggered as she tried to maintain her balance. She would walk through the monastery’s orchard or within the monastery itself until she was to the point of collapse. When she completed her Way of the Cross, she would then climb up many steps to a painting, in the convent, of St. Francis receiving the stigmata, where she would flagellate herself. At other times, she would levitate up into the tree in the cloister gardens, the other nuns saying she looked like a little bird in flight.
At times Veronica would take a very heavy log and carry it across her shoulders as a cross beam to reenact more authentically Our Lord carrying the cross to Calvary. There are crosses there till today, which the nuns carry on Good Friday.
Our dear Lord asked Veronica to fast for three years. Upon receiving permission from her Superior, she fasted for the next three years on bread and water alone.
-Bob & Penny Lord