“I have been asked about Guza Mifsud and the titles of Our Lady of Consecration and Our Lady of Girgenti. As her confessor, I can say that she is genuine and has to be taken seriously. In my view, she should be encouraged so that the Blessed Virgin’s wishes will be fulfilled.”
Mons. Salvatore Grima (Spiritual Director)
Guza Mifsud - Later Years
WHO IS GUZA MIFSUD?
Guza continues as follows: "when my brother Karmnu had been with the Jesuits for five years, my mother and I went on our usual visit. It was Sunday... Fr. Emvin Busuttil opened the door of Loyola House at Naxxar. He called for my brother Karmnu who came and talked to mother in the anteroom. Meanwhile, he indicated that he would like to speak to me. He said, 'Today, I will be plain, more blunt than usual. Guza, your mother and father will soon die, and you'll be on your own.' I told him, 'That I know.' But he continued, 'I'm sure you must take the religious habit before you die.' I was then about thirty years of age. So I said, 'I'm too old for a nun.' He insisted, 'You're not old at thirty, I'm telling you. You may wait till your parents die, and then even if you're sixty, I'll still urge you to become a nun.' I replied, 'I'm sorely troubled —I don't know what I feel.'
He called my mother and my brother. My brother didn't much like the proposal either and told Fr. Bususttil, 'Now even my parents will be worried.' My mother complained, 'What are you doing to us? It's like driving a knife in my heart. If Guza goes I will have to enter the Old People's Home at Ingieret — I depend on her for everything.' Fr. Busuttil agreed, 'That's quite true. On the other hand we can't leave this poor girl on her own. As a nun she will be cared for.'
With God's help we left that place, but we were very confused. I told my family I would not be happy as a nun. My mother and I burst out crying and she kept saying, 'Daughter, you lack nothing here. If you leave I shall be forced into an Old People's Home.'
She discussed the problem with her spiritual director. A few days later I was in the small shop I ran next to our house and I saw this priest coming. He asked me what happened. 'Nothing very much,' I replied, 'but last Sunday when we visited my brother, Fr. Busuttil took me to task and strongly urged me to become a nun.' This priest assured me, 'Guza, do not worry. You have your mission. Your primary duty, better than that of a nun, is to care for your aged parents. If you were a nun, you wouldn't have been able to fulfil this great mission. Besides, you're our village delegate for the sick and I am completely satisfied with the work you're doing. You're a member of the Figlie di Maria (Daughters of Mary) and you have undertaken the great task of consecrating families to Our Lady.
Fr. Nicholas Aquilina, the Siggiewi parish priest, got to know of what happened and also assured my mother, 'I shall go up and speak to Fr. Busuttil myself. Guza has a mission to fulfil in this parish.' But even this did not seem enough for me, and three days later I visited Fr. Gorg Preca (today the Blessed Fr. Gorg Preca). 'Leave the matter in my hands,' he said, 'I'll write to him a letter informing him that our lamb of Siggiewi has a large flock to care for, leave her in peace.' Then a great happiness filled my heart because I felt I knew what God wanted of me.
My mother died at the age of eighty one due to a heart attack and about five days later when Fr. Gorg Preca visited me, he said, 'When we live for God we look upon death as a gift. For your mother this was her greatest gift for she went to meet her Maker. Your mother always held the beads in her pocket and recited the Rosary... And now, I suggest you completely leave any apostolate you have been doing. Leave the congregation, stop being the village delegate for the sick, leave the Catholic Action Movement, leave even the task of consecrating families to Our Lady — say I told you so. The Lord God of Hosts together with the Queen of Heaven whom you love so much and with whom you have been in contact for so long will indicate more clearly the mission which He has prepared for you since before you were born. Not much time will elapse before what I now foretell will be fulfilled.'
I have already said that since childhood I have often been ill... When I was cured of typhoid, I vowed that I would offer up my life and strength to the Lord. In the past, Lent entailed a very rigid fasting regime. I often fasted right through the forty days, from Ash Wednesday up to Good Friday, however, when I fell ill at the age of twenty-two, my confessor Fr. Gorg Mercieca told me, 'You must stop this fasting because you have a lot of work to do and you won't be able to complete your spiritual mission.'
I suffered greatly, undergoing many mortifications, but certain afflictions I will not mention, I'll only mention a few. I used to put hard objects in my mattress so that I wouldn't rest soundly, but once more Fr. Gorg insisted that I should stop, 'If you don't obey you gain no merit in the eyes of God.' When I recovered from the fever I made a vow to Jesus Christ that, despite the suffering I felt especially in Summer when the day is longer, I would fast Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. I fasted on these days till the day my mother died, after which I fell ill again, and both Fr. Gorg Mercieca and Fr. Gorg Preca annulled this vow.
The first time I visited Fr. Gorg Preca he was hearing confessions in St. Gaetan's Church in Hamrun. I told him, 'I came here today because I want to make a general confession.' He asked me who my confessor was and I told him that he was Fr. Gorg Mercieca. I said that Fr. Mercieca was against my making a general confession and he commented, 'If Fr. Gorg Mercieca did not hear this confession, know that Fr. Gorg Preca will not hear it either. Don't make a general confession anywhere, you're not able to commit a venial sin, much less a mortal one. It's a good thing I got to know Fr. Gorg Mercieca is your confessor, because now I'll get to know you better.'
Around that time a member of the M.U.S.E.U.M. (short for Magister Utinam Sequatur Evangelium Universum Mundum, the motto of the laymen's organization founded by Fr. Gorg Preca in 1907 for the teaching of Cathecism) religious society had passed away and Fr. Gorg Preca suggested, 'I wish you would take her place and become a member.' I immediately replied, 'I've been wanting to do exactly that for quite some time but Fr. Mercieca advised me against, saying the work is not cut out for me. He wouldn't want me to join.' Fr. Gorg Preca agreed, 'It's good that you should mention his advice and now, even I will counsel you not to join.'
When I had my contacts with Our Lady, I went to Fr. Gorg Mercieca and recounted what had happened at night during that week. He said, 'I shall be praying for you more than ever. I want you to write down the experiences you're going through.' For special advice I often called on Fr. Gorg Preca telling him about Our Lady's message. When I felt that he was beginning to understand me I asked him what I could possibly do as a woman. He answered, 'You can work extremely hard and can do a great deal of good. Never fear, have courage, let no one frighten you. I know what a Calvary I've been through because of Church opposition when I opened the doors for the teaching of Cathecism at the M.U.S.E.U.M. Even you will suffer a great Calvary. Through Church intervention you will suffer. In other ways too you will suffer in the future because there will be numerous unbelievers. There will be trials and tribulations but no harm will come to you because the hand of God will guide you. So will Our Lady who is inspiring you and granting you these visions.
Have complete trust in God, take courage, fear nobody, remain simple and humble. Blessing you with both hands, I assure you, daughter, that nobody will harm you, for the boat of St. Peter which Christ set up when he was in the world, notwithstanding the waves which have been beating against it, will not be shattered. You are still secluded and unknown to everybody, but I feel that I am often inspired about you. I'm sure that in the future, much good, both temporal and spiritual, will occur in Malta and throughout the world through Our Lady with whom you are having many contacts.'
When, some time later I told him that I had seen the Lady of Life, he said that he knows many things, 'and Our Lady won't stop her with you. On my part, during Holy Communion, I frequently intercede with Jesus on your behalf.' Talking to him, I felt chilly but I offered this to Our Lady. He continued, 'The Lord is going to use you,' and I said, 'But, Fr. Gorg, don't you think I'm too weak for these things?' He replied, 'I advise you to leave everything in the Providence of God for He uses whomever he wants. A few days ago I learnt that Jesus is using you to convert souls.'
Then since 1951, when the Great Mission came to Siggiewi, I started going to confession to Monsignor Salvatore Grima, from Zejtun, who founded the House for Retired Clergy, Christus Sacerdos, at Fleur de Lys."
Guza relates that it was through her spiritual director, Monsignor Salv. Grima, that she spoke in public about the message of Our Lady of Consecration. She claimed that in May 1983, Mgr. Grima had sent her a message through Sister Roza Balzan that he would visit her home. "And I told her, 'But my house isn't fit to receive Monsignors!’... But any way the Monsignor arrived. He told me, 'I feel so happy. Guza, we must do something... We need Our Lady's help.' I replied, 'Monsignor, this will cause me great trouble.' He replied, 'Yes, but Our Lady's message cannot remain hidden. At all costs you must proclaim it.' I told him, 'At all costs we will disclose it.'" But the message was not disclosed then because Guza was ill.
Sometime later, on November 1, 1983, Guza was at home praying for her mother on the nineteenth anniversary of her death, when she heard her mother's voice, "Guza, don't stay in today. You haven't received Communion yet... You must go and visit your spiritual director." Guza hired a taxi and together with a friend, visited the House for Elderly Clergy. After Communion, the Monsignor said, "Now's the time" and the message was disclosed to the public.
When Monsignor Grima was asked to comment on Guza Mifsud, he left the following written declaration: "I have been asked about Guza Mifsud and the titles of Our Lady of Consecration and Our Lady of Girgenti. As her confessor, I can say that she is genuine and she has to be taken seriously. In my view, she should be encouraged so that the Blessed Virgin's wishes will be fulfilled." In a letter dated August 6, 1984, Mgr. Grima wrote the following: "...First of all I feel that Jesus wants me to direct you spiritually. I accept this mission and I shall help you as best as I can. I feel happy that I am helping you in this holy mission.
You too must be happy that Our Lady has chosen you to spread Her message. I feel that both Jesus and His beloved Holy Mother are happy with the work you are doing for their glory. I am sure that at the hour of your death your greatest consolation will be that you have worked to complete their sacred wishes..."
But in 1983, Guza only spoke about the title of Our Lady of Consecration, she did not mention Girgenti at all. On October 1985, she went to Girgenti accompanied by Mgr. Amante Buontempo and indicated the place she had seen the Blessed Virgin on the loquat tree. She spoke for the first time about Our Lady of Girgenti in November 1985. She said, "on the night of Our Lady of Victories (8th September), I heard the Blessed Virgin speaking to me at great length. She told me to state how I had seen her at Girgenti. That day she was wearing a white dress, a blue mantel and held the rosary beads in her hands. She also told me that at Girgenti she wanted a statue to be made in her image as she had also requested in the 1950's."
Mgr. Buontempo was highly instrumental in aiding Guza disclose the Girgenti message. He told her that she would not find peace before she did so. Then, Anton Agius, a sculptor was contacted to make the statue, which was imaged on Guza's painting of Our Lady of Girgenti. The statue was erected at Girgenti on May 5, 1986.
During the prayer meetings, organised every month, Guza used to deliver the messages she claimed to have received from the Blessed Virgin, Jesus in the Eucharist and various saints and holy souls such as St. Michael, St. Joseph, St. Therese, Saint Padre Pio, etc.
Guza's soul departed towards the Lord on Monday 28 October 1996. During her funeral that took place on Wednesday 30 October 1996, Mgr. Carmelo Xuereb, Vicar Emeritus, said, "Up to the very end Guza lived in all serenity waiting for the moment when the Lord would call her... She was preparing to go to a home for the elderly and... exactly when she was about to leave, the Lord called her. She welcomed death with the greatest tranquillity and this was obvious because Guza had no worldly attachments. Saints do not have such attachments..."
Further information may be obtained from the series of books entitled 'The Founding of a New Titular'.