This letter was originally posted April 28, 2007. By special request, it is being re-run in hopes of reaching out in OLTIV's mission to secure this holy ground for Our Lady's work. Please help if you can.
Open Letter from the Owners of Sylvan Springs
To All of Our Lady’s Faithful Children,
On behalf of my entire family, I would like to express our sincere thanks to all who have been supportive of Our Lady of America and our private effort to preserve this Holy Ground for the use of all those in need of God’s healing grace. For all of those who have given their help to OLTIV, I can assure you it has been worthwhile. So many more people have come to know about Our Lady of America through their efforts.
It has been a unique privilege and opportunity to do this work at Our Lady’s request. It was not what we had intended on doing when we started on this venture seven years ago, but it turns out it is exactly what She had in mind.
I have learned many things along the way:
Our Lady has a keen sense of humor. Most mothers do when it comes to their children. She has used us in so many crazy ways that, once you stop and realize what She has just gotten you to do, you can’t help but sit and laugh at how incredibly funny She is. Her escort angels are pretty hilarious too, but you’ll all have to wait a little longer to hear about them and their antics.
We have had so many people show up at this place, with the same bewildered look on their face, saying “Forgive me, but I have no idea why I’m here.” We soon came to learn that the Holy Spirit was guiding these people here (some from overseas) for specific reasons, each one different from the last. We learned to drop what we were doing and attend to them so God could do His work with these people. Each one of these visitors left here healed in the specific way they needed. I’ve learned that people should come expecting nothing but take what they are given because Our Lady knows you better than you know yourself and She will give you what you need, not necessarily what you want.
People have often asked about the water and the healings. I’ve learned the water is a metaphor for God’s grace that emanates from this property. It has been this way from the very beginning when the future Archbishop Noll helped the young Dr. Geiermann to acquire the property for its use as a healing center. It was then supported over the years by the hard work and sacrifices made by the many devoted Sisters of The Precious Blood who worked tirelessly, some even giving their lives, to help heal those who were sent here for healing or tender care in their last days. I feel it is because of these committed acts of love that Our Lady chose this place to deliver the central Our Lady of America messages.
Just as the spring water that flows year-round from underneath this property collects in the ponds and canals before finally overflowing into the river tributary where it joins the rest of the world, so it is with the special graces that flow from this place. People come here, receive these graces, and end up taking some extra blessings with them which, in turn, are passed on to others they come into contact with.
I think it is no coincidence that the dramatic increase in frequency of reported healings and spiritual awakenings taking place here (examples of God’ graces) share the same timeline as the rebirth of a once-dormant spring. This spring had not flowed since the Sisters of The Precious Blood left this place in 1977 and it suddenly erupted back to life on Good Friday afternoon a few weeks ago. This increase in God’s graces is being echoed in the unheard of doubling of the life-sustaining spring waters flowing from this property. This is a definite sign that should be properly acknowledged.
If there is one thing I would like everyone to remember, it is this:
Our Lady of America knows what you need and also knows what those around you need. She knows how to use us to move these graces amongst her children like the flowing water. Water always finds the path of least resistance just like God’s graces. Stop trying so hard and just work on being obedient. Be less resistant. Say “yes” to Her call and She will do the rest.
We have never felt like owners of this property even though we have always felt a great responsibility to act as stewards in preparing it for its highest and best use.
We knew nothing about Our Lady of America when we took this project on, but we have learned what we need to do to help ensure the success of Sylvan Springs in bringing families closer to Jesus Christ. We know what needs to be done.
Canon law requires that shrines not be privately owned. They must be owned by a not-for-profit and overseen by a religious order that need to show a secondary use of the property besides that of a shrine. This facility could easily be run as a semi-retirement home for religious while serving the various pilgrims who are very interested in visiting. It is also set up to handle water bottling and athletic competitions on any of the twelve high-quality athletic fields which have been constructed. It could be a very unique situation for America.
We have been working for nearly two years to find the right group or individual to provide the funding support necessary to convert this property and hold it for Our Lady of America’s work. Unfortunately, our ability to keep up this search has come to an end. Unless a solution to our needs presents itself immediately, we will be selling the property on the open market. This is a terribly painful decision for our family but it is the only option we have left.
If anyone reading this is interested in being a part of something special, please do not hesitate to contact us through the OLTIV email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are open to suggestions from interested parties. Partnership opportunities, outright purchase, or leasing are possible business relationships that could ensure the success of this facility.