Bishop from Philippines Julito Cortes was in Medjugorje in the company of thirty five witnesses. He heard about Medjugorje in the very beginning of the apparitions at the time he was a student in Rome. In his interview for Radio Station Mir Medjugorje, the Bishop spoke about joy of him being able to come, but also about the difficulties that are preventing people to come to Medjugorje.
Father Joseph Horn from the United States arrived to Medjugorje in his twelfth visit with a group of pilgrims. “I am here to deepen my faith and I always try to pray better even though I have been a priest for fifteen years now. This time I have brought twenty six pilgrims and my only prayer is to discover the grace of knowing what our Heavenly Father desires of me. I feel that we have a little time left and this world is in the need of prayer and peace, and I have asked my group to pray for peace”, said Fr. Joseph who added that Medjugorje is very well known in Michigan state where he lives.
Maria Rosa and Gino Sorenzo, married couple from Italy, have arrived to Medjugorje for hundred times. They are coming from the shrine of St. Anthony of Padua in Italy and they have been bringing pilgrims from Italy eight times each year. Only in the previous year they have brought twenty-eight buses to Medjugorje. Maria Rosa arrived for the first time to Medjugorje in 1988, and she came with her family in 1993 in the middle of the war in our country.
Franciscans from the province of St. Casimir in Lithuania came in Medjugorje for six-day spiritual retreat that is conducted by Fr. Miljenko Steko. Their Provincial Fr. Astijus Kungys is with them and this is his first visit to Medjugorje. In their interview at Radio Station Mir Medjugorje they said how they came to pray and to seek for the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary that she may intercede and guide them during the elections in their Province that will take place next January. “Christianity began with the Blessed Virgin Mary when she said her Fiat, through the Holy Spirit and through Mary’s Yes, Jesus was born. That is why we wanted to come to our Mother, to learn from her how to be humble and opened to God’s spirit, how to say our own Fiat every single day. May it be to me according to Thy will! Another reason why we wanted to come here is because Franciscans work in this parish and we wanted to meet their experience. What we encountered here is so simple – traditional prayers: Adoration, Way of the Cross, Rosary, Litanies. It is wonderful to be simple!” said Fr. Astijus Kungys.
The funeral began on Friday, November 9, 2012 at 3.00 p.m. with Holy Mass for dead, which was celebrated by Bishop Ratko Peric, together with Fr. Ivan Sesar, the Provincial of Herzegovinian Franciscan Province, who gave a homily and with numerous priests who had concelebrated. After Holy Mass, Fr. Petar’s remains were taken to Kovacica graveyard where he was buried.
Fr. Marinko Sakota, current parish vicar will be the new parish priest in Medjugorje parish. The Provincial has proposed this and Bishop of our Diocese, Ratko Peric has confirmed that in the official Decree. (photos)
Fr. Petar Vlasic, current parish priest in Medjugorje parish, passed away early this morning after having fought with difficult illness in the last few years.
Fr. Petar died in his 75th year of life, in his 51st year of priesthood and he was a priest for the last 47 years. He served in the various parishes as the parish vicar, the parish priest and the guardian of the monastery. He was in Medjugorje since 1999, and he was appointed as the parish priest in August 2007. His body will be exposed in the parish church of St. James on Friday, November 9 at 1 p.m. The funeral will start at 3 p.m. with Holy Mass in the church of St. James. He will be buried in graveyard Kovacica.
Eternal rest grant him, o Lord, may his soul rest in peace!
The seminar of permanent formation of the Third Franciscan Order of Bosnia and Herzegovina was held in Medjugorje from November 2-4, 2012. The theme of this seminar in which around 40 Tertiaries participated was: “Franciscans in the world, for the world: Identity, vows and communion”, and this theme was introduced by brother Benedetto Lino from the International Presidency of the Third Franciscan Order. (photos)
The Information Office in Medjugorje has registered many pilgrims coming from the following countries: Austria, Germany, the United States, Italy, France, Belgium, Japan, Spain, Portugal, Brazil, Ireland, Netherlands, Slovenia and Korea. Among many priests who have arrived, we had opportunity to meet Croatian missionary, Fr. Ilija Barisic, seventy years old priest who has been working and living in Africa for the last forty years. Fr. Ilija said how he has special love for Medjugorje through late Fr. Jozo Vasilj who was his colleague in Zadar, and Head of Seminary in Congo as well. schools at very distant areas that were hard to reach, but not impossible. He is now in parish of Kimbulu, in Franciscan Province of St. Benedict in Africa.
Number of Holy Communions: 182 500
Number of priests that concelebrated at Holy Masses: 4186 (135 per day)
Feast of All Saints and All Souls Day are always opportunity to visit our graveyards so we would give thanks and remember our departed ones. Holy Masses are celebrated on graveyards in Medjugorje parish on both days. Along with parishioners who come from abroad, many pilgrims have arrived to Medjugorje from all over the world as well.
Pilgrims from all over the world are still in Medjugorje. The Information Office has registered groups of pilgrims from Ireland, the United States, Germany, Italy, Austria, France, Slovenia, Portugal, Spain, Poland, Hungary, Lithuania, Brazil, Romania and Croatia. We met Jelica Bikfa from Velika Gorica, town in Croatia, who has been bringing groups of pilgrims from 2001.
Married couple from Italy, Giuseppe and Liliana Mengoti, arrived to Medjugorje after walking for 1067 kilometers in 36 days of journey. They live in Lugano, Como Lake, close to border with Switzerland. When asked about their reason to walk to Medjugorje they said: “We decided to refurbish their house and to make a chapel inside their new home. We wanted to have statue of Our Lady inside our chapel, but we decided to come and to take that statue after this walk to Medjugorje. We heard a lot about Medjugorje. As we travelled, many people were saying to us to pray for them when we come to Medjugorje.” This pilgrimage made huge and positive impression on them. “After we arrived here, we could strongly feel peace and joy and we will carry those messages back home.”
Paul Dahdah, the Archbishop of the Latin Church in Lebanon and the Apostolic Vicar of Latin Catholics in Lebanon came to Medjugorje. He gave interview to Radio Station Mir Medjugorje and spoke about religious life in Lebanon, about the fruits of the visit of Holy Father to Lebanon, about Medjugorje and the Year of Faith. He heard about Medjugorje fifteen years ago when he was Archbishop in Iraq. “I realised later on that there were many communities of faithful who were regularly going to Medjugorje, that there were organised visits that TV station “Light” was organising together with Maronite priests. This phenomenon of conversion and reconciliation, of prayer could really be interpreted as the sign of the time in this world that has lost the value and meaning. We live in the handicapped world that has lost its grounds. I was able to see young people around the statue of the Risen Lord, and I am certain that they came here to seek for the meaning of their lives and I would like to hope that this phenomenon will be permanent, authentic and that it will last for a long time. One conventual priest who comes here very often and he told me that Medjugorje is a phenomenon made of confessions, reconciliation and prayer…”, said Archbishop Dahdah.
We would like to notify all of the Franciscans, relatives, friends that Lord’s servant and our brother,
Fr. Zoran Ostojic,
parish vicar and parish priest,
had died on October 17, 2012 after having received the Holy Sacrament of the Sick. He was 99 years old and he served 73 years as a priest and spent 80 years in priesthood.
His body will be exposed in the parish church of St. James on Thursday, October 18 at 1 p.m. The funeral will start with Holy Mass at 3 p.m. and he will be buried in Kovacica cemetery.
MAY HIS SOUL REST IN PEACE!
HIS BROTHERS, HERZEGOVINIAN FRANCISCANS
The journalists of Radio Station Mir Medjugorje met Elio Karlovic and Slavko Files among many pilgrims who are coming from Croatia to Medjugorje during October. Elio is the founder of prayer community “The Queen of Peace” from Pula and two of them shared their experience of Medjugorje with us. Elio was encouraged with all of the other prayer groups that existed throughout the world and inspired by the spirit and the example of Medjugorje, Elio decided to organise the meeting of priests and pilgrims from Pula who were coming to Medjugorje.