Thursday, August 3, 2023

Teen Dies, Enters Heaven, Meets Jesus -- Catherine's Testimony

I would like to share with you the testimony of sister Catherine Hughes, one of our students in England, who is currently in her second year of our three-year Doulos Training School. This is about her first encounter in heaven in 1971, at the age of seventeen years old, when she committed suicide and was confirmed clinically dead by the doctor for twenty minutes. Here is her testimony: 

Testimony of Catherine Hughes
Good evening, everybody. I'm Catherine Hughes, and I'm here to give you my testimony of miracles that Jesus has done. My story begins at age two, when my parents were traveling down south from Manchester to Southend for a holiday. There was a car accident, and my parents died, but I survived. I was put into a children's home at that time. Then at age four, some foster parents came, who had three sons, and they fostered me. But they didn't have any love at all, and I was abused a lot from ages four to fifteen. 

When I was seven, the next door neighbor sent me and the boys to Sunday School. One day, the Sunday school teacher had told us of many miracles that Jesus had done; and he said, "Throw your hands up, whoever wants to ask Jesus into your heart." So I put my hand up, and everybody else did as well. At age seven, I didn't really know what that meant, and I just believed that one day, maybe I'll meet this wonderful Jesus who does miracles. So that was all I knew to start with. 

Things got worse with my foster family. When I was fourteen, I had a nightmare that I was drowning, and the foster family members were drowning. I thought, "Oh, this is it! I'm going to die!” It was a very horrific nightmare. Then I woke up. It was midnight, and the moon was shining through my window. I sat up in bed, and I pinched myself to make sure I was still alive. I was glad that I was. 

Then I saw a bright light in my bedroom, and I saw a figure. I thought, “Oh, is this an angel? There's no wings, so it’s not an angel.” And then I saw this woman. She had a veil and a blue and white gown. Then I realized, because I'd been to Sunday school, that it was Mary, Jesus' mother. And she said to me, “You are a child of God.” And I thought, “Me, a child of God? I don't feel good enough to be a child of God.” I didn't say anything though, but just smiled. 

Then I heard Jesus' voice, and He said, “Don't be afraid. I'm always with you.” I looked around to the other side of my bedroom, but I couldn't see Jesus. Then when I came around to see Mary, she'd gone. 

I sat up in bed all night, and I just couldn't believe what I had seen -- that Mary had come to see me and had said, “You're a child of God.” And that Jesus had said, “Don't be afraid. I'm always with you.” 

Jesus later told me the reason he brought His mother to see me was because when I was two years old, I was in a children's home, and I'd lost my mother and father. I never knew what it was like to have a real mother and a loving mother, and I always had so much pain. So that is the only reason Jesus sent his mother to see me in a vision, and it had nothing to do with the Catholic Church. Jesus wanted to show His love for His mother, and that was so important to me.  

So I stayed up all night thinking about it. Then at six o'clock I thought, “I've got to go back to school this morning, so I need to go to sleep.” I went back to sleep and I went back into the nightmare again. 

But then there was like a flash, and then I was in heaven with Jesus and his mother. I knew I was in heaven, because I could feel the breeze and smell the flowers, so I knew it was different from a dream.

So Mary His mother took me to a table where the disciples were. Jesus was at the top and there were two empty chairs -- one at the top, one at the bottom of the table. I sat at the bottom, and I said, “This is where I belong.” But Mary said, “No, you don't.” And she told me to meet Jesus, and Jesus said, “This is My body, and this is My blood that I give for you as my sacrifice for you. I want you to do it as often as you can.” Then I woke up. I had come back to my room. 

I went to school, and Sandra my best friend was in the class. I kept falling asleep, so she said, “What's wrong with you? You keep falling asleep.” I said, “I've been awake all night. I saw Mary. I had a vision, and I went to heaven.” She said, “Nonsense! You must have been dreaming.” I said, “No, it's true. All right, let's go to the old church tomorrow (Saturday), and I'll tell you the story again.” She said, “All right then.” 

So we went round the old church, and I told this story again. Then we came across this monk. He held our hands and said, “Girls, you must pray the Lord's Prayer every day. Then you'll go to heaven. You promise?” We were scared of him, so we said, “Yes.” Then we saw him walk away. He said, “Bye, girls. I'll see you in heaven.” And Sandra said, “Did you see that!” I replied, “Yes! He walked through the wall of the church! He's an angel!” Sandra said, “Well, I believe you now.” So I thought, “Great! That's wonderful!” 

After that, I left school, and I went to work in a car firm in the office, where the head lady was going to try me out to be her partner. When my first foster mother heard of this, she wasn't going to have it. So she decided, “After our holiday, I'm going to send you to a working-girls hostel.” 

So anyway, we went on holiday to Minehead, which is down south. There's a big hill right near it. It’s a Butlins Holiday Camp. And one day she said her son was going to get married. She said, “We don't want you there. So here's a green pound note for the day, and we'll see you about five o'clock tonight." They locked their chalet, and I felt quite upset -- rejected again. 

So I walked right towards this big hill, which was miles away from the holiday camp. I walked to the top, and I talked to God all day. When it was getting dark, I came down the hill. When I got to the bottom, there were a lot of trees, and I thought, "I can't see the Holiday Camp, because all the trees are in the way." So I thought, “Well, where do I go? I'm lost!” Suddenly, a Jewish-looking man with a beard came up to me. He said to me, “You are lost aren’t you?" I replied, “Yes. I don't know how to get back to the chalet.” He said, “Well, I've got a Jeep, and I'll take you home.” 

So when we got in the Jeep, he said, "Jesus sent you a vision of his mother to tell you that you are a child of God and Jesus told you not to be afraid, as He is with you always." I said, “Yes! How do you know? The only person I've told was my school friend Sandra.” He told me, “Well, I know all about your first foster parents, because I'm from Heaven.” I thought, “Wow! Must be an angel!” Anyway, he took me home, and I didn't even know the chalet number, but he did.  

My foster mother said, “What time do you call this?!” I said, “I got lost, and your friend Paul took me home.” She said, “We don't have a friend called Paul!” Then I looked around to say goodbye to Paul, but I hadn't heard the Jeep move away. He disappeared!  

I went into my bedroom and read in the Bible, where it says, “You will entertain angels and not know it.” So I thought, “That was another angel! Wow, that's awesome!”  

When it was time for me to go to the working-girls hostel, I got a job at a publishing company. There were four girls from Barstool, who were bullies. They kept threatening me every time I got paid, since they wanted my money, and they used to do séances. So the atmosphere at that workplace was just like my foster mother's home, because there, they did the same thing. 

Then I made friends with Linda, who was also from a foster home, as I was; she wasn't like the others. She suggested to me that we run away, as we were very unhappy in the hostel. I agreed with the idea, and so we did, sneaking out at six o'clock in the morning. We raided the pantry of biscuits, and then got a train to London. After walking around London all day, we went to a pub in the evening and met these Irish guys, who were Catholics. We told them we had run away, and they said, “All right, girls. We'll look after you.” They had a really posh house. They had also told us, “We'll pray for you.” So I kept praying, “Lord, keep us safe,” because I didn't know where we were in such a strange place. 

At seven o'clock in the morning, the police came, and the Irish guys told us, “Sorry, girls. We can't look after you, because we have to go to work. But God will look after you.” So we returned to the hostel, and the police said to us, “Anything could have happened to you girls! It's a miracle that you're both okay.” I replied, “Of course it's a miracle. I’ve been praying all night.” 

After that, they sent Linda away. So the next year I was very depressed, because the girls kept bullying me for money, and the pain of what my foster parents did to me was just horrific. I couldn't stand the pain, and I had nobody to talk to. 

During the summer on the 21st of July 1971, I decided to end my life. It was a Wednesday, six o'clock at tea time. They were all having their tea, except for me. I got a glass of water and two bottles of tablets, went to my bedroom, and opened the window. I sat in the window, and said to God, “If you love me, save me now.” After taking two bottles of tablets with water, I felt dizzy and jumped out the second floor bedroom window. 

Then, next minute I found my spirit by a light bulb on the ceiling of the hospital. When I looked down, I could see they were trying to revive my heart with the electric pads. The monitor was already a straight line, and I shouted, “Don't stop doing that! I can't get back in my body if you stop trying to revive me!”

However, they did stop reviving me, and put the sheet over my face. I was watching them, and the doctor said, “It's a shame…A seventeen year-old has thrown her life away. She must have suffered.” I thought, “Oh, no! I'm sorry, God! I didn't mean to end it all. It was a cry for help.” 

As soon as I said that, everything went black for a minute, and I then found myself going down this tunnel quite fast. I felt safe, and there was a bright light at the end of this tunnel. Then I saw a beautiful garden and paths of clear gold. And I saw angels flying around. I thought, “This must be heaven.” But wow, what a beautiful garden! The colors were so bright, and I could feel the breeze on my face like warm breath and could smell the perfume of roses. It was a beautiful place. I could feel God's love like soft waves coming through. I began to feel so much joy and felt like dancing. There was nothing negative inside of me anymore -- no pain -- but only a very powerful love and a strong feeling of belonging. I felt as if it were my home, like I'd always been there. I also felt a very close, intimate connection, as though God were hugging me the whole time.

Then Jesus came. I knew it was Jesus, because I had seen in Sunday school what He looked like and had also remembered hearing His voice when I was fourteen. Then Jesus held my hands and said, “It's not your time yet. I've got work for you to do, but I can't promise you'll be free from pain.” When I saw the Lord, He conveyed His love like electric waves, and I felt so warm. 

When He spoke, He was very authoritative. I felt like I had to stand at attention, but then also He was like my best friend. 

I thought, “I don't want to go back. I had so much suffering. I really don't want to go back.” But then I thought, “We can't say no to Jesus.” He showed so much love, like I had never known before, and there was so much light and warmth coming from Him. I looked into his eyes and said, “Yes, Lord. Whatever you say, I'll do.” Then the Lord smiled at me. 

The next moment, I went back down this tunnel really fast and came to the light. Then I came back to consciousness. The sheet was over my face and a tag was on my toe. I pulled the sheet off and climbed out of bed, but I fell on the floor, because I didn't know I had broken my left heel. 

The doctor and the nurses looked as though they had seen a ghost. "We'd given you up for dead!" they told me. "You've been dead for twenty minutes. You're in the morgue!” But I replied, “Well, Jesus has just brought me back.” They just couldn't believe it. The doctor said, “Well, I have read about near-death experiences, but usually they're only dead for five or ten minutes, and then they'll come round.” He said, “You've been dead for twenty minutes! It's a miracle!” I replied, “Yes, it is a miracle.” The nurse asked me, “Do you mind if I test your brain? Because you should be brain dead.” I said, “Okay.” I was told, “There's absolutely nothing wrong with you apart from you breaking your foot. Yet you were dead for twenty minutes.” I said, “Yes, well Jesus works miracles.” 

After that, I went back to the hostel for a couple of weeks and traced my Aunt Hilda. Then I went to college and stayed with her and my Uncle Ted. They were loving and caring Christians, and I went to church there. Then I went to a conference with some friends, and the leader was talking about the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I said, “Well, a friend had prayed for me for the baptism with Holy Spirit already.” But he told me, “Well, the Lord wants to fill you again.” So I agreed, and he prayed over me for the baptism with the Holy Spirit. I felt a heat and something like electricity going right through me. He said, “Praise the Lord!” And when I praised the Lord, this tongue (or language) came. I thought, “Wow!”  

Then he said, “Now I want you to pray over my thumb.” I asked, “Why? What's wrong with it?” He said, “Well, I was chopping vegetables yesterday, and I cut my thumb right to the bone and had to go to hospital for stitches.” I responded, “Well, I don't know anything about the healing ministry." But he told me, “Well, all you have to do is obey the Lord.” So I said, “Okay. I believe Jesus works miracles. I've read and heard so much about Jesus working miracles.” So I held his thumb and prayed, and this tongue (language) came out of my mouth. And as I prayed, the heat and the tingling in my hands were so strong! When he took the bandage off, the stitches dropped off, and he exclaimed, “Gosh, there's not even a scar!” I said, “Well, Jesus does heal today!” 

Then a lady heard what had happened. She was young with three children. She told me, “I've got cancer of the stomach, and I've only got three months to live. Will you pray over me?” I agreed to do so, and said, “Well, Jesus heals. I don't know anything about healing, but I know Jesus healed." So I prayed over her and prayed in tongues again. Then after a while, she said to me, “I didn't know you spoke Spanish.” I said, “I don't know a word in Spanish. Jesus talked to you in Spanish. So what did He say?” She replied, “He said I've been thinking about being saved, and Jesus said that now's the time for me to ask Him into my heart.” So I said, “Okay, well, ask Jesus to forgive you for your sins, and believe that he died on the cross for your sins, and ask him into your heart now.” So I led her in that prayer, and then I prayed for her healing again and the pain in her stomach completely went away. Then she said, “The pain's gone!” She was completely healed. 

Then the leader said to me, “I want you to go on stage.” I thought, “Me, go on stage? You must be joking.” “No, I'm not joking,” he said, “I want everybody to know.” So I went on stage, and he was waving his thumb and telling about how it had been healed. And I told them about the young lady who had had cancer of the stomach. And there were other miracles as well, which were absolutely amazing. 

Then I went to Birmingham with some friends, because they had some Christian meetings. They worked for Birmingham Bible Institute. And they said to me, "Just go window shopping while we have a meeting.” So I said, “Yeah, okay.” And she added, “By the way, don't talk to strangers.” I said, “Yeah, alright.” I was nineteen by this time. 

So, I walked across the road, and as I was just about to cross over, this posh car drove up and stopped; and the driver said to me, “You can tell me about God.” I thought, “Oh, Lord, I'm not supposed to speak to strangers.” But the Lord said, “You're going to witness him.” So I said, “Lord, am I safe?” He replied, “Oh, yes. Trust me.” So I said, “Okay.” 

We went to his very posh house -- he was very rich. And as I looked around, he said, “You think I've got everything, don't you?” I replied, “Yes, it looks like it. It really does.” But he said, “None of this means anything to me. I'm empty. I'm looking for what you've got. You've got God, and I want what you've got.” I told him, “Well, you'll need to sit down, because it's quite a story.” So I told him the whole story, and he was crying on his knees. I said, “Don't go on your knees. I'm just human like you.” He asked me, “What do I do to get saved?” I responded, “Well, believe that Jesus died on the cross for you, for your sins. He's the Son of God, and if you believe in Him, ask Him to forgive you, ask Him into your heart, and live for Jesus and God the Father, you'll be saved.” So he said, “Well, how do I thank God? And how do I thank you?” But I said, “Oh, don't thank me; thank God. Go to church and ask the leaders to help you serve the Lord.” So he put me back where he found me, and he was so happy. 

When I told my friend, she said, “I told you not to speak to strangers.” But I said, “Well, the Lord had other plans.” So she was amazed. And she said, “Well, God's going to use your story, I believe.” 

So if anybody wants to get saved, all they have to do is pray this prayer, which is to ask Jesus into their heart, and believe that Jesus died in the cross. He's the Son of God, and He died for us all on the cross for our sins, to set us free so that we can serve the Lord and worship Him. So ask Jesus into your heart and say, “Dear Lord Jesus, forgive me for my sins. I believe you died on the cross for me, and I want to serve you and worship you. I want a personal relationship with you, Lord Jesus, the Son of God. And I want to serve you and worship the Father the rest of my life, in Jesus’ precious name. Amen.”


Closing Words

What an amazing testimony! Let me just comment regarding the Jewish man named Paul, who met Catherine at the bottom of the hill, told her all about her life, and then disappeared after he dropped her off at the chalet where her parents were staying--even though she didn't know which chalet it was. She told me that the picture to the left most closely resembles him. While it could have been an angel, since the Bible clearly tells us we may encounter angels without being aware of it, it is my belief that this was the apostle Paul. It is just as easy for God to have one of the living saints in glory appear and help us in some way, as it is for Him to send an angel or another earth-dwelling human being. 

When I told Catherine that I and my family all believe it was the apostle Paul, she replied, "Yes I agree with you, I do believe it was St Paul that was sent to me. He had so much love and compassion just as he does in his letters to the churches in the New Testament, and his love and passion for Jesus our Lord is awesome. When I read his letters in the New Testament, it's like I know him in Spirit and I remember my encounter with him."

Why should any of you consider it incredible that God could do this? He is the Sovereign Lord and nothing is too difficult for Him. Just as Moses and Elijah appeared talking with Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:1–8, Mark 9:2–8, Luke 9:28–36), so the Lord can permit anyone He so wishes to have this sort of experience. 

This is all part of the communion of the saints that is spoken of in Scripture and in the Apostles' Creed. We believe in the communion of the saints. According to the apostle John, "...if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from all sin." (1Jn 1:7). Those who walk in the light in this way not only have fellowship with the Lord, but with the saints here on earth. And if God chooses to allow it, they also have fellowship with the saints in glory. 

However, we are not to seek to initiate direct contact with them. Such encounters come to those who diligently seek the Lord Himself, like John did on the Isle of Patmos. While he was in the Spirit on the Lord's Day, he had an amazing revelation from God that he wrote down in the book of Revelation. Not only did he see the Lord Jesus Christ and the heavenly Father, he also saw angels and saints in glory, including the twenty-four elders. In fact, he spoke with one of the twenty-four elders (Rev 7:13). And many believe that the particular angel who spoke with him and showed him things in heaven was actually the prophet Daniel. John wrote:

"At this I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said to me, 'Don't do that! I am a fellow servant with you and with your brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For it is the Spirit of prophecy who bears testimony to Jesus.'" (Rev 19:10)

The reason many believe this was the prophet Daniel is that he told John that he is a fellow servant with him and his brothers who hold to the testimony of Jesus. A fellow servant (Gr. sumdoulos) of John and other disciples of Christ signifies being one of them and coequal with them. And the reason he is believed to be the prophet Daniel is that God gave Daniel an apocalyptic revelation of the end times, too, as written in the book of the Bible that bears his name. The books of Daniel and Revelation fit together like a lock and a key. How fitting it would be for Daniel to speak with John during his heavenly encounter and show him the things he showed him.

When I asked Catherine what Mary looked like, she said, "Mary had dark hair and brown eyes, and looked like a young Jewish girl (closely resembling woman in photo to left). The Catholic Church portrays her as English with fair hair and blue eyes. She doesn't look like they portray; they have her wrong. She spoke with great authority, and a strong voice. She spoke the same English as I do, with the South London accent, as I was brought up in South London." 

She stated: "The Holy Spirit later reaffirmed to me that Jesus sent his mother to me, to help heal the trauma of having an abusive foster mother, and never having a loving mother." 

She continued, "When I tell people about this vision, I always point out that Jesus sent his mother to me so that I would know who I belong to -- 'Jesus' -- and not to become a Catholic as some people have said. For although I didn't see Jesus that night, He was still there, because I heard his voice loud and clear, which is a witness to Catholics that Jesus is our Saviour, and they must not pray to or worship Mary." 

Her second encounter in heaven occurred later in life during a time of grief that she was experiencing. In her second encounter, she describes how she saw God on His throne with Jesus at His right hand, and the four living creatures around the throne, as well as the twenty-four elders and myriads of angels all around. You may read about that here in my related article called Catherine Hughes' Second Encounter in Heaven. (See important note below).

Author's note:  If you enjoyed this testimony, I think you'd enjoy this other testimony about Catherine: Catherine Hughes' Second Encounter in Heaven. You may also enjoy watching a short, five-minute version of her testimony produced by God TVCatherine is not Catholic, nor does she follow the Catholic practices associated with Mariolatry. As a former Catholic myself, I want to be very clear that neither Catherine, nor the Lord, nor my article about her experience in any way whatsoever condone the unbiblical Catholic practice of adoring Mary, worshiping her, or praying to her, which constitute idolatry. Please see my two very important articles about that called Unbiblical Practices of the Catholic Church and Messages from the Lord for Catholics Worshiping Idols. Also related are Baptized with the Holy SpiritThe Gift of Speaking in Tongues, and The Body Parts Storehouse in Heaven.

You are also invited to read or listen to the many, amazing testimonies of the supernatural on the Home page of this blog, some of which are listed below.  You may access my complete blog directory at Writing for the Master.

Forty Days in Heaven and HellOnly the Holy -- Three Shocking TestimoniesAngelica Zambrano Hell and Heaven
Baptized by Blazing FireIan McCormack's Revelation of Heaven and HellRevelation of Hell to Seven Colombian Youths
Australian Pastor Raised from the DeadNigerian Pastor Raised from the DeadMichael Thomas Sambo's Revelation of Heaven and Hell

Do You Want to Know Him?
If you want to know Jesus personally, you can. It all begins when you repent and believe in Jesus.  Do you know what God's Word, the Bible says?

“Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” (Mar 1:14b-15).  He preached that we must repent and believe. 

Please see my explanation of this in my post called "Do You Want to Know Jesus?"

Len Lacroix is the founder of Doulos Missions International.  He was based in Eastern Europe for four years, making disciples, as well as helping leaders to be more effective at making disciples who multiply, developing leaders who multiply, with the ultimate goal of planting churches that multiply. His ministry is now based in the United States with the same goal of helping fulfill the Great Commission.

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