Photos and reports of the preaching ministry of Fr. James
in the year 2007 (October - December)

January - March   |  April - June  |  July - September  |  October - December

Fátima -Portugal. Dec 7 - Dec 9.

With organizers


Ciney - Belgium. Nov 22 - Nov 25.


Retreats in Canada. Oct 26 - Nov 7.


Munich. Sankt Maximiliankirche. Germany  Oct 1 -4. 2007

Panoramics         Testimonies

Published in  October 2, 2007.

An Octoberfest in the Holy Spirit

By Michail Rassool 

Foto: (c) Klemens Hrovath 

Father James Manjackal M.S.F.S. is conducting a retreat in Munich from  October 1 to 4. Franziskus v. Ritter-Groenesteyn gives his report of the first day.

Munich ( The Indian priest Father James Manjackal M.S.F.S. is giving a retreat from October 1st to 4th in Munich. Franziskus v. Ritter-Groenesteyn is attending and will be writing a daily summary of each day of the retreat for KATH.NET.

First Day – An Octoberfest in the Holy Spirit
For the first time, a parish from Munich opens its doors to an Indian, Catholic, charismatic priest to give a retreat. In the beautiful Glockenbach quarter near the Isar River, the imposing steeples of St. Maximilian stand out. The church is also affectionately called the “Notre Dame on the Isar” by the people of Munich because of its similarity to the French original on the Seine.
At eight in the morning, about 400 people are standing in two queues in front of the neo-Romanesque church, waiting to get inside. Many have arrived from out of town, an international atmosphere prevails. Father James is a restless traveller in the Holy Spirit. Three weeks ago he was in northern Germany for a retreat, last week he was in Linz. Now he is inviting all those who are seeking, to experience the Holy Spirit – for four days.

As at the beginning of every retreat, he prays for a word, this time it is a message for Munich. It is a word from the Book of Isaiah. It’s about wining and dining: “On this mountain the Lord of Hosts will provide for all peoples a feast of rich food and choice wines…” The church actually stands as if on a little mountain above the Isar valley, at the foot of the church the endless stream of city traffic passes by to the left and to the right of it.

The “clap your hands and shout” is still rather subdued. Father James is not afraid to make a comparison. A man once explained to him that the Germans are shy, that it’s not customary to raise the hands and to sing loudly. It would be better to forget about that. Father James answered that he had a different impression. At the Octoberfest, not far from St. Maximilian, he had seen many Germans singing loudly and even dancing on the tables.
Yes, that’s because they were drunk from all the beer, the man said. Father James answered, “When you are drunk from the Holy Spirit, you will sing and dance”. King David was singing and dancing in front of the Ark of the Covenant. That is the drunkenness that he wishes with all his heart, each participant would experience. The spacious, sun-filled church fills with the hymns of the Holy Spirit, a fervent prayer for Munich is intoned, “O Lord pour out streams of living water…”
Father James understands the German hesitancy and reluctance. He talks about the beginning of his priesthood in Kerala over thirty years ago. At that time he was striving for the priesthood, moreover for the position as a professor of theology, because “that would be give him a comfortable life in prosperity.” That was his motivation. He didn’t have a good opinion about singing in tongues or charismatic gifts at that time.

He became a professor but he was not able to enjoy that comfortable status for long. He was stricken by a mysterious illness which tied him to the bed, robbed him of his sleep and his life strength and let him suffer much pain for many a night. One day a young, newly converted Hindu came to him. He claimed to having being lead by the Holy Spirit, to pray for his healing. Father James felt uncomfortable about that and he was more than sceptical. The young man is not to be deterred and he begins to pray for Father James’ healing, but not only that, he also prays for the ability to preach.

Father James stops short. Nobody knows about his fears at the ambo, he can’t speak a word there and now, all of a sudden he is supposed to be able to preach? How did this young man find out about this? Outspokenly, he admits that the Holy Spirit told  him. Father James is healed, also of his many sins which he openly admits, and since then he has been travelling around the world, preaching God’s love for all peoples.

He then comes back to a question the Pope asked during a large meeting of priests in Rome. What is God’s will for mankind? Many answers were given, but not the one the Pope wanted to hear at that time – that is also true for us: “God wants our holiness!”

Father James challenges us to repeat it: “God wants MY holiness”. And he knows how that can happen: “let yourselves be filled with the Holy Spirit and know, that my ways are not your ways”, as it is written in the book of Isaiah. For the greater plan, the greater context, in which so-called bad luck happens, cannot be recognized by the human eye, but for God’s plans one thing is certain: everything that happens actually serves our becoming holy.

Father James also conducts many missions among the Moslems in the Gulf region. Its not so hard to make clear to them why Jesus is the only way to the Father. Once it becomes clear to them how Jesus differs from the other prophets, and he explains that to them using their own scriptures, namely that Jesus is the Saviour, the only one, who took all our sins upon himself, so that we could live in the truth and the freedom of the children of God, they are open for the Holy Spirit and many miracles happen.

Its never too early to begin confessing Jesus as our Saviour. Then he tells the following story about his translator Richie: Richie asked his daughter a question and gave her the answer while she was in her mother’s womb. After she was born he repeated this procedure again and again. Now she is two years old and anyone can ask her the question, who is Jesus Christ, and he will receive the answer like a shot: “Jesus is my Lord and Saviour”.

Whoever accepts Jesus cannot reject his body, the Church. Once an Austrian came to him, asking for healing from cancer. Father James confesses that it always makes him sad when the people see him as a sort of miracle healer instead of a priest.

There is only one doctor and healer and that is Jesus, he emphasizes. He is only the one who shows the way. And if anyone is not prepared to change his life, to repent of his sins, he cannot expect much.

That man did believe in God, but he wanted nothing to do with the Church. Father James asked why. There was a priest who once hurt him badly, the man said. Father James kneeled down in front of the man and kissed his feet, asking for forgiveness for his sins, for his sins were also his own sins and misdeeds. The man was so touched that, in tears, he was reconciled with the Church. Yet he still didn’t want to come back to the Church, he had left the Church – because of the Church taxes.
Father James asked the Holy Spirit for a suitable answer. He asked the man if he was an Austrian. He said yes, his ancestors were also Austrians. Did he like being an Austrian? Naturally! Then he is  very sorry to have to tell him that he must leave Austria. The man protested indignantly. Why?
Well, Father James explained, he pays taxes to the country, practically for every drink of water in the jurisdiction and if he doesn’t want to do that, if he doesn’t want to feed any government officials, then he must leave Austria.
The man was shocked. He had never looked at it that way. A year later they met again. The man had changed completely, had been to confession, come back to the Church and been healed of cancer.
After the Holy Mass there was a seemingly endless declaration of spontaneous inner and external healings. During the adoration before the Blessed Sacrament the blessings and graces about which Father James spoke took place.

First he saw before his spiritual eyes, the sufferings of many who had come. At times one had the impression that everyone in the church was sick. Then he proclaimed the healings: three persons had healings of the eyes, eight persons’ ears were healed, 32 were healed of physical illnesses, five persons were healed from aids and many more than can be mentioned here.

And he became even more concrete,  saying the names connected with each healing: Jossip, Ingeborg, Gudrun, Ivan, Ernst, Claudia, Marie-Therese, Marisa, Rucha, only to name a few.

A deeply felt “thank you Jesus” remained in the hearts of the community on the way home…

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