Parish of Medjugorje is going to celebrate Feast of St. James, patron saint of Medjugorje parish, by celebration of solemn Holy Mass at 11 a.m. in the Garden outside the church. Procession with the Statue of St. James is going to take place before Holy Mass and choir is going to sing litanies of All Saints during the time of the procession. Representatives of village Vionica are going to carry the Statue this year, and parishioners are going to prepare for this Feast with three day prayer programme that begins on Thursday, July 22nd. On the Feast of St. James there will be whole night adoration of Blessed Sacrament that takes place every 25th in the month. Adoration begins at 10 p.m. and continues until 7 a.m. of the following day.
Parish of Medjugorje was founded in 1892, and placed under the patronage of St. James, the Apostle. Only five years afterwards, with huge efforts of parishioners and priests, the first church was built. Although it was quite beautiful and spacious for that time, it was built on the unstable ground and it started sinking and cracking and it was necessary for the new church to be built. Construction of the current, new church began in 1934 and was completed in 1969. Everything was just a simple, ordinary life of small parish until the events in 1981 when this parish became centre of the whole world with millions of people that started coming here.
Patron saint of Medjugorje parish, St. James, the apostle and his brother, John the apostle were sons of Zebedee, who was a fisherman on the Sea of Galilee. St. James first joined the group of disciples who had followed St. John the Baptist, and later he joined the group of disciples who followed Jesus. James was the witness of Transfiguration of Our Lord together with John, as well as the resurrection of Jairus’ daughter. He was also amongst those who were with Jesus during his time of agony in the garden of Gethsemane. James is one of the first apostles who laid his life for the Gospel, and that was back in either 43 or 44 AD, according to the order given by King Agrippa I.
He is the patron saint of pilgrims and his remains are kept in the shrine of Santiago de Compostela in Spain. The statue of St. James, here in Medjugorje church, like everywhere else in the world presents St. James as a pilgrim, saint, carrying walking stick, a little water vessel and a sea shell used for drinking water.