Holy Mass for killed Franciscans and parishioners in Medjugorje parish

date: 11.02.2014.

Holy Mass for all killed Franciscans during and after the World War II, as well as for all parishioners killed in the First, Second and recent Homeland War was celebrated in the parish church of St. James on Monday, February 10, on the feast of Blessed Alojzije Stepinac. Up to this day, graves of so many killed persons have remained unknown, but memory on them is still alive in hearts and prayers of faithful. Fr. Ivan Dugandzic celebrated the evening Holy Mass with six priests that have concelebrated. As he spoke about killed Franciscans, he said: “Every year, Herzegovinian Franciscans and all faithful recall with sadness and pride their most recent history. With deepest sorrow, we remember how 66 Franciscan priests were killed in February 1945 by evil communists, but we also remember thousands of husbands and wives who have never returned home after their execution Way of the Cross that took place after the World War II. Their graves remain still unknown. As we proudly remember them we know that our killed Franciscans were martyrs and witnesses of our Christian faith who were killed just because they protected their people and their faith. Communist executors thought that by killing them, they will kill the faith of these people. We know they were mistaken – the case was also here proved that blood of martyrs was a seed of new Christians. As we remember today in our liturgy Blessed Alojzije Stepinac, who was a victim of those same executors and witness of our faith in a kind of different way, we also remember Fr. Krizan Galic, parish priest of this parish who was brutally murdered here in the parish office and six other priests who were born in this parish and murdered throughout Herzegovina: Fr. Jozo Bencun, Fr. Benardin Smoljan, Fr. Marko Dragićević, Fr. Mariofil Sivrić, Fr. Grgo Vasilj and Fr. Jenko Vasilj. Along with them, we also in this Holy Mass, recommend into God’s grace all those who were killed and who went missing in the First, Second World War, in the period after the war, as well as in the recent homeland war.”