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The Testimony of Monsignor Franzinelli on a meeting with Padre Pio

Msgr Franzinelli 57th Ordination Anniv. May 2009"On my return to Rome from the Holy Land in 1966, my mother's deep desire was to go to visit Padre Pio. We took the train to Foggia and then the bus into San Giovanni Rotondo. The first thing my Mother wanted to do was to go over to the Church and inquire about the activities: confession, novenas, etc.

She found out that Padre Pio was listening to confessions and she wanted to go to confession as well, but I declined because I had just gone in the Holy Land. I could have gone to confession again, but I did not want to go to Padre Pio because of rumors that if you left anything out of confession, he would remind you that something was missing... My Mother went to confession and I asked her what he said and she replied, "Brava".

I went into the Sacristy and inquired about Mass. They told me that Padre Pio was saying his Mass in the Church, so I was told to wait and I did. I waited in the sacristy and knelt down in the prie-dieu, saying the priest prayers for preparation before Mass which was in Latin. I was taking my time. I was kneeling at the prie-dieu, deciphering the Latin, when all of a sudden I was interrupted by a Capuchin Friar, striking me on the shoulder. I stood up and turned around and Padre Pio was no more than 6 inches away from me, with a big smile and dancing eyes. I was kneeling at his prie-dieu where he says his thanksgiving prayers after his Mass! So they moved me over, put the vestments on me and told me to go out and say my Mass.

When I got to go out, while walking up the steps to the Altar, I had to catch my breath because of the strong scent of flowers. There were flowers on the Altar. So the short of this is that when I finished my Mass, returning to the Sacristy, I commented to the Friar Sacristan about the strong odor of the flowers, so before I could finish unvesting and still in my alb, he brought me to the Sanctuary again, took me up to the Altar, and showed me the flowers - they were "silks"! And he then explained to me the odor of flowers that when Padre Pio said the Mass he could leave a scent of flowers.

I went back to San Giovanni Rotondo in 2003 and concelebrated the Holy Mass at his tomb. No scent of flowers."

The photo is of Msgr Franzinelli, taken on the 57th Anniversary of his Ordination, May 2009.
The Monsignor is the Spiritual Director of The Marian Information Centre in Las Vegas, USA.

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Padre Pio was particularly fond of flowers
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