The first day of the 25th International Youth Festival in Medjugorje

date: 02.08.2014.

After the lecture of Fr. Ante Vuckovic given on Monday morning after the Morning Prayer, the first testimonies were from the members of the community Merciful Father that exists in Bijakovici, as a part of Mother’s Village. Vlado Milakovic, member of that community, spoke about his healing from gambling. The second testimony was from Mario Cucciardi from Malta, husband and father of two children. He works for the last 23 years as the educator and he taught in different schools in Malta. He teaches Arabic language and Maltese language, as well as the personal and social development. He highly appreciates the protection of the family as well as the environmental protection and is involved in the music ministry intensively. He has been coming to Medjugorje for the last seven years and he never dreamt of that before. After his mother died, his life was really hard, but coming to Medjugorje helped him find the purpose of his life in the new light. Mons. Domenico Sigalini, the bishop of Palestrina that is part of Roman Diocese, spoke also at the end of the morning lectures. He has been Bishop of Palestrina since 2005, and from 2007 – 2014 he was the general assistant of the Italian Catholic Mission. At the moment, he is the Secretary of the Italian Bishop’s Commission for migrations. For many years he has been involved in the Medjugorje Youth Festival and gives lectures to the youth regularly. One of the visionaries, Marija Pavlovic Lunetti spoke in the afternoon, as well as Magnus McFarlane-Barrow, from Scotland. He is married and has seven children. He discovered Medjugorje in 1983 and that experience changed his life completely as well as lives of his parents who transformed their hotel into the house for the spiritual exercises that became the prayer centre for the youth from Scotland and from all rest of the world. During the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Magnus began to bring humanitarian help that with a time led him to establishment of the humanitarian organisation “Mary’s Meals”. Magnus received several international awards for his work, among those are CNN Hero for 2010 and the Award of the British Emporium for 2011. He spoke about his experience of Medjugorje and afterwards, the documentary movie about the work of that organisation was shown. Newly ordained young priest Fr. Tomislav Zubac celebrated the Holy Mass at 7 p.m. and homily was given by Fr. Ante Vučković. (photos)