Numerous pilgrims arrived to Medjugorje in the last few days and we had chance to speak to Peter O'Brien, law student, who comes from Cork in Ireland. This is his fourth visit to Medjugorje and he said that he came for the first time when his friend, a priest, paid a trip for him "I was here for one week and even though I heard for Medjugorje before, I could not know what was happening indeed here. After I returned home, I had experience of deep conversion. It was a profound conversion and from that time I became very interested in Catholicism, Holy Mass and confession.
We are now in the month that is especially devoted to the Blessed Virgin Mary and we are all invited to be included a bit more into the evening prayer programme and prayer of Rosary and Holy Mass, so we could thank Mary for all the graces She bestowed upon us. The timetable of the evening prayer programme had changed from May 1, and Rosary is now at 6 p.m., while Holy Mass is at 7 p.m. This period is very popular for many pilgrims, that according to the Information Office records, have arrived from Germany, Austria, Ireland, England, the United States, Canada, Italy, France, Poland, Spain, Argentina, Brazil, Ukraine, Belgium, Hungary, Latvia, Lebanon, Korea, Sweden and Norway. We had chance to talk to many pilgrims from Croatia and one of them, Zdenka from Rijeka, told us that this is her third visit to Medjugorje together with her parishioners.
Number of Holy Communions: 160 700
Number of priests that concelebrated at Holy Masses: 2418 (80 per day)
As it happens every year, starting with Thursday, May 1, 2014 the timetable of the evening prayer programme in Medjugorje is being changed. The Rosary will begin at 6 p.m. and Holy. Mass at 7 p.m. The other programme after. Holy Mass will be the same according to each day's schedule. The Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on Tuesdays and Saturdays will be at 10 p.m., and at 8 p.m. on Thursdays, immediately after Holy Mass. Prayer of Rosary on Apparition Hill will be at 4 p.m. and of the Way of the Cross on Fridays on Cross Mountain also at the same time.
On Divine Mercy Sunday, April 27, we registered many groups in Medjugorje that came from Croatia, the United States, Ireland, Scotland, Italy, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Korea, Slovenia, Slovakia, Hungary, France, Canada, Poland, Lebanon, Ukraine and Spain.
Among the pilgrims that came from Croatia, we met 80 years old Marija from Nova Gradiska who came to Medjugorje for the 80th time. She said that she was able to experience great grace here: "When I return home, my family says that they can feel peace, love and happiness. Nothing without the Lord, and all with the Lord. Blessed are those who trust in the Lord, for that is the greatest treasure and greatest love."
Many pilgrims arrived to Medjugorje for Easter this year and all of them, together with parishioners took part in the liturgical celebration of Easter Triduum. Pilgrims came from Italy, the United States, Ireland, France, Germany, Lebanon, Austria, Portugal, Argentina, Spain, Latvia, England, Slovakia, Korea, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Fr. Hrvoje Miletic led the prayer of Rosary on Holy Thursday and Fr. Ivan Dugandzic celebrated Holy Mass of Lord’s Supper along with 25 priests who have concelebrated. Fr. Ivan is his homily said that Jesus was born in the poorest circumstances, lived among poor people, died deprived of his clothes and was buried in someone else’s grave because he did not have his grave. (photos)
“Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.”
To all parishioners, pilgrims, friends, benefactors, and to all men of goodwill a
Blessed and Happy Easter!
Parish priest and the Franciscans
Uskrsna cestitka 2014 - fra Marinko Sakota
Sunday, April 20, Resurrection of our Lord – Holy Masses in Croatian language in the parish church will be held at 7, 8, 11 a.m. and at 6 p.m.
Palm Sunday or Sunday of Passion of our Lord brings us into the Holy Week and the preparation for the greatest Christian solemnity – Easter. As in the previous weeks, the liturgy of Palm Sunday on April 13 began on the grounds of the old parish church at 10.30 a.m. After the Gospel was read and olive branches were blessed, the Procession with readers, priests, altar boys and all parishioners and pilgrims, continued towards the parish church. After arriving to the church, Fr. Karlo Lovric celebrated Holy Mass at 11 a.m. in the parish church of St. James. Fr. Mladen Herceg celebrated the evening Holy Mass at 6 p.m. with seven priests concelebrating. Many pilgrims have arrived from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, England, Italy, the United States, Germany, Austria, France, Belgium and Ireland. Apart from three Holy Masses in Croatian language, there were five Holy Masses celebrated in other languages. Many pilgrims also joined the parish in prayer of Rosary on Apparition Hill at 2 p.m. (photos)
Every Friday during the Lent after the evening Holy Mass, Franciscans from Medjugorje parish are leading devotion of the Way of the Cross. Last Friday, this devotion was more special because two choirs “Pro Musica” from Mostar and “Prijatelji” from Citluk were leading this Way of the Cross with songs and in words as well. Fr. Dragan Filipovic, conductor of the choir “Pro Musica” composed the lyrics of late Croatian poet Branko Klaric that he wrote during the war. “This Way of the Cross was written for choir, single performers and orchestra. I thank all those who participated and who have helped and contributed in this music work of the Way of the Cross. I liked what Branko Klaric wrote and as I was discovering textual melody, this Way of the Cross was made. Late Branko Klaric wrote one or two verses for each station of the Way of the Cross and many are familiar with those words”, said Fr. Dragan. This Way of the Cross was broadcasted live by radio station Mir Medjugorje.
Number of Holy Communions: 65 800
Number of priests that concelebrated at Holy Masses: 1344 (43 per day)
Around 150 pilgrims from Istria, Croatia came to Medjugorje last weekend. They were all from area around town Rovinj and they came as a part of their annual pilgrimage that is organised always during the Lent. Rebeka Sebastijan and Marija Pendic from Rovinj witnessed about their experience of pilgrimage and conversion in the radio programme of radio station Mir Medjugorje. Rebeka spoke about this year’s pilgrimage to Medjugorje and about activities of faithful through the Third Franciscan Order in Rovinj:
Many pilgrims from all over the world are coming to Medjugorje and many of them end up as our guests in the radio programme of Radio Mir Medjugorje. This last Wednesday, on the feast of St. Joseph, members of the choir Mihovil from Split were our guests. They gave their testimonies and sang as a part of our show Evening of the spiritual music. This choir was established in 2006, and they are active in the parish Kamen in Split. At the moment they have around 30 members, and they were named after their patron saint, St. Michael, while their leader is Mate Pocrnjic. This choir was noticeable at many festivals of the spiritual music, such as Uskrsfest, Hosanafest, Marijafest, Papafest and Krapinafest. In 2009, they have also published CD with their own music, called “Embrace of love”, that contains 12 songs that are fruit of their meditations and prayer.
Medjugorje was busy in the last few days and there were groups of pilgrims from the following coutries: Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Mexico, Argentina, Italy, the United States, Canada, Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Korea, Hungary, Latvia and Slovenia. Massimo Nosscenttini from Italy shared his testimony with us and he heard about Medjugorje in 1981, for the first time, but arrived here already in 1983. His profession is a bus driver and he told us that Gospa completely changed his life.
Giosepina Russo from Sicily works in the agency for pilgrimages in Marian shrines throughout the world. She visited all Marian shrines in Europe on few occasions, but somehow never had chance to come to Medjugorje. Even though she was told that Medjugorje is not recognised shrine yet and should not be mentioned to pilgrims, she felt great desire to come here. Mrs. Russo said that she did not even know where Medjugorje was in Europe. She came to Medjugorje last year and remained here for 15 days.