The wand chooses the wizard, goes the now popular saying. Indeed it does. But that also means that when a fellow decides to find his first wand, then that day is special, because on that day a wizard is also chosen.
The people closest to me in my life have special gifts. My wife Veronica Chiari has a divine gift, the specifics of which I cannot at this time divulge. But I have come to understand that the purpose of my life is to serve her and the implications of her gift. So I have given up everything that I have ever dreamed of, in the way of personal accomplishments, in order to help ensure that the purpose of her life is accomplished. Luna, our good friend with whom we have profound spiritual links, possesses clairvoyant and telepathic powers and is gifted with connections to the spirit world. She also has a task to accomplish, given by the other world. I have come to understand that both my wife and I have a purpose in relation to Luna, and that it is to create and provide a spiritual haven for her, while she goes about accomplishing her own task.
Luna was the one who first casually mentioned that I have a shield, a protection against psychic assaults. I did not know what to make of this fact. It was something I had never been aware of, and coming to know it made no discernible difference before or after. Then another day, in the middle of another conversation, she mentioned that when I motioned with my hand, that my finger was very powerful. Again, I had not known this before. But afterwards I thought to test it at the animal sanctuary that Veronica Chiari and I keep. Sure enough, the animals would obey when I commanded with a pointed finger.
I realized that if this were a gift, then it must be used only in service of that good to which I had already been given. But why would my wife need this kind of service? If she has opponents, her greatest enemies will be theologically minded, ideologically driven, and spiritually opposed. Indeed, Luna, holding her hand within hers, foretold all these things. But those kinds of opponents are all to be dealt with on the level of her own gift, with her own theology and her own spirituality. The only answer I could figure was that other obstacles would arise, people with gifts like mine, but with ill intentions directed at her. Then my gift would be needed. All these thoughts came at a time when I was feeling that my life, as I had always dreamed it until this time, with all its deep seated wishes, desires, and goals, had come apart, and had come undone. So, perceiving the offer of the gift, I decided I had nothing more to lose, and to go ahead and accept the gift, believing and taking the new path ahead of me.
I selected the tree and the branch for my first wand—or they selected me—on a Monday. I chose a piece from a branch that someone else had already cut and had left at the foot of the tree. After peeling off the bark and whittling rough edges off the wood, over the next days I let it dry, oiled it with olive oil, and varnished it. I consecrated it on the subsequent Sunday. In the consecration I asked the help of God and of my guardian angels for doing whatever tasks God required of me on this new path.
Looking back, the Monday that I selected the wood was September 26. As it turned out, that Monday was the feast day of Saints Cyprian and Justina (1962 Missal). Who are they? While Saint John Bosco is the patron saint of illusionists—that is, of people who perform stage magic (John Bosco performed magic tricks in order to keep his students’ attention during Bible lessons)—Saint Cyprian is the only saint who was once also a sorcerer; a real mage. But his patronage of magicians is no longer mentioned, because that kind of magic is not supposed to be performed. As it is, because that day also chose me, he and Saint Justina are my patron saints on this new path:
Cyprian, the magician, endeavored in vain to deceive the holy virgin Justina by his sorcery. He was converted to the Faith, and both were beheaded at Nicomedia under Diocletian in 304. (1962 Missal)
As for the Sunday that I consecrated the wand, calling upon the help of my guardian angels, that day, October 2, turned out to be the feast day of the Holy Guardian Angels (1962 Missal).
As if to put a seal on these synchronicities, about two weeks later this message came in from a dear friend from Divinity School days, a spiritually gifted person of considerable psychic powers, via her monthly newsletter. The context was her telling the story of the Old Woman in the Cave, who reweaves the stories of the world after they have been picked apart by Raven:
[T]he cave of forgotten knowledge lives within you. There’s an old energy there that knows how to weave what you’re looking for, even when it gets picked apart. It knows how to start fresh. What would it look like if you journeyed to that space and dialogued with what is waiting for you? (Kelly McGannon, Bridge Between Two Worlds, October 2016)
Though worlds change and we must go through the changes with them, there’s a reason why they change when they do. And what I have learned is that the most precious things in our personal past are what prepare us for accomplishing our personal tasks in the future. And therefore that future will require, as always, love and the courage of love, faith, hope and trust, and self-sacrifice.
And so the journey begins.