The Manger Angels
A feeling of total peace came over me as I sat on the floor of a barn at Spring Farm CARES animal sanctuary in upstate New York on a perfect fall morning.
Each year during the holidays, the season of peace and joy, I am taken back to the time that I was shown what it must have been like in the manger at the moment that Jesus was born.
It was late October and the leaves were painted in the beautiful colors of bright oranges, reds, yellows, golds and browns. I was having the most wonderful time as I drove through the mountains of central New York state. Each small town that I passed through made me smile as I took in all of the Halloween decorations that adorned each front porch, door and yard. Not just the typical carved pumpkins and the occasional stalk of dried corn, but painted tomb stones, coffins with Dracula popping out, ghosts in trees, spider webs on bushes…a much needed delight and distraction as I was nearing the end of my 12 hour drive from Virginia to Spring Farm CARES. The long drive allowed me to decompress from my usual day to day life as a video editor for a Washington, DC TV news operation and get me in the energy of nature and the animals.
I was so excited to be going to this magical place that is home to many animal teachers and master teachers to attend my first advanced animal communication course taught by an amazing animal communicator, Dawn Hayman. I had been called there by a llama named Gulliver and hoped to learn why he wanted me to be there. I could not wait to meet him.
I arrived at the door that leads to the area where the llamas, sheep and goats were. I had to pause and take in what I saw. It was a beautiful sight. A beam of sunlight was shining on a female student sitting on hay that covered the floor of the barn and she was leaning her back against a wall. She was facing two horse stalls, but able to see into the area where the llamas and sheep were. Three adorable goats were with her. It was a tender and moving moment. I didn’t want to disturb the scene. She motioned me to come in and I did. I quietly sat down in the doorway between the goats and llamas.
I had never sat on the floor of a barn before, but here I was. It was a dream come true. I had my back resting against the wall of a horse stall, with a horse just on the other side. My feet were stretched out straight in front of me. About one foot away from the bottom of my feet was Gulliver. He was lying down on the barn floor with his head erect looking deeply into my eyes. His legs were tucked under his body much like a kitty does. Just behind him, also sitting on the floor was his good friend Corrie, a while llama. To my immediate left were 3 black sheep, Angel and her sons, Michael & Gabriel. To my right stood Simon, a white goat that had long ears and a very long white beard. Rounding out this group were two black and white goats that were walking back and forth greeting other students that would walk in, sit down for a moment or two, and then leave. There was no way that I was going anywhere!
The scene seemed to be more like a dream than reality to me. I just could not get over the fact that I was actually sitting on the ground, closely surrounded by so many amazing animals. Each one of them alone is an amazing being. As a group,…well let me share my experience with you.
As part of the Advanced Animal Communication workshop we were given an assignment to have a communication with an animal. Before arriving here I had tried to communicate with some horses and donkeys but I felt completely blocked as well as not good enough to do this work. But here I finally was surrounded my Gulliver and his friends. I felt no fear of any kind, maybe because I was totally naive. I had never been this close to a goat, sheep or llama in my life. I felt like I was in either the best dream or heaven.
I began to ask some questions of this group, especially “my” amazing Gulliver. Answers came to the trivial questions that I asked, as students entered and exited. Then I was alone with them. I took slow, deep breaths filling my lungs with the wonderful clear, cool, fall air along with the aroma of straw, earth and the unique smells of each animal. I told Gulliver that I loved him and thanked him for the blessings that he sent me at the first workshop in Virginia and told him that I would never forget him. I told him that I was honored to be so close to him. He looked at me with his large deep dark eyes, gave recognition, but nothing more.
Gabriel (one of the black sheep) walked up to greet me and looked deeply into my eyes. As our hearts and souls came together in that moment, tears filled my eyes as emotions filled my heart and soul. He wanted to see my pen and paper. He kept pushing my hand that held a pen to take notes. I told him that I wanted to make some notes so that I would never forget. He didn’t see the point in that. Gabriel seemed unsure when other students would come and go from their area and he kept going over to Gulliver, touching him and nuzzling him. Gulliver reassured him that all was well and that the humans were all students that were there to learn from them.
I heard Simon the goat say, “I can fly with the angels!” I thought I was hearing things, but he said it again. Not out loud like Mr Ed, but in the silence. He had a sparkle in his eyes. At that moment Gabriel came over to me and sniffed my shoes. I asked him what he learned by doing that. He replied, “To know where you have been and if you are an ok being.” That made sense to me.
Celeste, another goat, said, “Can’t you see the angels” They are all around us! Can’t you feel them?” I looked and saw tiny sparks of light that seemed to be floating in the air and then I closed my eyes. I could “feel” the angels that Celeste mentioned. There were many of them, all around us filling the space that we occupied as well as outside. All I could do was smile. I opened my eyes and I felt the deepest peace that I have ever known.
Gulliver and the others told me that what I was feeling is the peace that was felt in the Manger at the moment that Jesus was born. I looked into each of their eyes, one at a time and thanked them. Gulliver said to me, “Now you are beginning to learn what we are all about. We are all teachers, and you have so much to learn. Be patient and open.” I asked, “What do you have to teach me and what do I have to learn from you?” Gulliver and the group replied, “When we are all together, peace and joy is all around. Can’t you feel it? Let it flow. Let it fill you and send it back to the Universe for all to enjoy.” I felt as if I was in another place, not on this earth but closer to heaven, as if I was in the Manger Scene, surrounded by white light and angels.
I stayed in that moment with my “Manger Angels” until the group was called back inside. I did not want to leave.
When it was my turn to share my experience with the group I did my best to put into words what I experienced with Gulliver & friends. Our teacher Dawn, told us that there actually are angels there. I had no idea at that time that the place in the barn where I was sitting with Gulliver and the Manger Angels was very close to the site of a horrible fire that had taken place almost that very day of the year several years before. The Manger Angels had witnessed not only the barn burning to the ground, but also the loss of many of their animal friends as there was a big snow storm that Halloween night and the fire trucks could not get to them. The angels that Simon and Celeste wanted me to see were the many animals that had lived at Spring Farm and were now in spirit.
At the time I did not know what kind of impact my experience with the Manger Angels would have on me, but it was life changing. That moment in time was a fork in the road on my path of life that has taken me to the present moment and will stay with me for the rest of my life. I often return to that moment where I am surrounded by Gulliver, Simon and the Manger Angels. I sit with them in the silence and live the experience once again.
My wish for you is that you too find this kind of deep connection, love and peace with your animal companions and all animals. Just “be” with them in the silence and allow them to teach you.