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A Birthday Visit

January 7, 2001
Inverness, Florida
Click on the tiny pictures throughout the story to view full size

Issues feels the necessity to clarify the term Believer that was used in conjunction to the Fort George story.

While my best friend has always believed in the existence of spirits and communication with those who have passed into the next realm of existence, the next realm of existence would, more recently, convert into an empire of reality for her. My friend's father became extremely ill, deteriorating on a daily basis. During his illness, her father exposed his belief in the afterlife. Approximately one month after the disclosure of his secret, her father would succumb to his illness, leaving his pain on earth, moving into the peaceful certainty of eternal life.

My friend's father explained how he had made many trips to Lily Dale as a youth, in the company of his father and sister. World famous Lily Dale, is nestled within the quaint village of Cassadaga, Chautauqua County, New York. The roots of Lily Dale were planted in the small village of Laona, (just a few miles from where the present community is located) in 1844, just prior to the infamous Fox Sisters Spiritualist Movement.

Please do not confuse the Lily Dale / Cassadaga area with Cassadaga, Florida. Although this group was originally founded by a member of the Lily Dale Congregation in my opinion, they are extremely different in both purpose and commercialism.

The members of The Lily Dale Congregation are spiritualists by religious choice as well as being mediums these persons are not psychics. The difference is crucial; mediums are people such as John Edward and George Anderson; individuals who communicate with those who have past into the afterlife. Psychics on the other hand, are people such as Jeane Dixon, who foretell the future or utilize measures of ESP to astound a person by revealing personal information.

My friend's father passed from the earthly realm on November 22, 2000. The family gathered experiencing their first holiday gathering without the father present. They gathered again on the father's birthday, January 7, 2001; at which time my friend, decided she should use the film left in her 35mm camera from the family's Christmas gathering.

After having the film developed, my friend was stunned to see what appeared in the pictures taken on her father's birthday. (NOTE - there were four photos taken, one of the photos involved living family members, so they have thusly been excluded from this article.)

Photo taken in my friend's father's bedroom
Click on photos to see larger image

Both of the following pictures were taken in the family dining area

I do not have the negatives of these photographs, nor have I seen them. I scanned the photos into my computer, but no additional enhancements were made to the above photos. I have examined the photos in an attempt to locate possible explanations for the phenomena. One should easily notice that the swirling lights are in different positions on the photo. The fourth (missing) photo does not have swirling streaks, but rather a white orb over the head of one of the family members. I cannot explain the occurrences in these photos.

While visiting in New York, I accompanied my friend to Lily Dale where she met with one of the resident mediums. Prior to this time, my friend was relatively unaware of the differences between Psychics and mediums. She had been to a variety of "psychics" since her father's death, yet she never felt relief about his passing after these visits. Since her trip to Lily Dale, the depression she felt over the passing of both her father and a very close friend appears to have dissipated. (Grief counseling comes in many forms. My opinion relates to the fact that a person's grief is more easily dissipated if a message from the loved one is received; such as the sessions conducted by George Anderson. Skeptics, of course, suggest that such avenues of grief support take advantage of the grieving. As noted by the Grief Counselors at the University of Buffalo: "To Cope with Death and Dying" one must "Maintain hope." I believe that mediums are by far, the most beneficial avenue by which a grieving person can find a way to maintain hope.

Own videos about Faith and Inspiration.

The Paranormal:

  1. Debating the Paranormal

  2. Fort George Ghost Tour

  3. Apparitions: A Birthday Visit

  4. Haunted Abbeville

  5. The Ghost That Didn't Like To Remodel 

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Page Last Updated: 6/15/2002
C 2002 L Munro