"Dear children! Do not forget: this is a time of grace; that is why, pray, pray, pray! Thank you for having responded to my call." October 25, 1999
ALL SAINTS' DAY
The feast of All Saints' Day is an occasion to recognize the power of God's Spirit in the life of holy women and men and to compare the meaning of one's own life with theirs. They were people made of flesh and blood who - despite their fragility - ennobled and enriched Christian history. "Holiness is not some Nobel prize, but an invitation for every Christian." (Klaus Arntz)
In many messages Our Lady invites us to start on the way towards a holy life. This way is not possible without the Good News of Jesus. The mother of God especially points us towards Jesus Christ: He is the model and the source of holiness. Therefore, holy life is nothing exceptional for a Christian, but rather an obligatory program, interest and goal of our journey in this world.
N E W S
THE FEAST OF ALL SAINTS' DAY
Traditionally a great number of pilgrims come to Medjugorje on All Saints' Day and All Soul's Day. This year the most numerous pilgrims came from Austria, Germany, France and Italy. Here in this place of pilgrimage, these are days in which we - together with the pilgrims from the entire world - pray especially for the deceased, but particularly for the Croatian defenders, who gave their lives for our freedom. They are not unknown to the foreign pilgrims. The Medjugorje pilgrims became great friends of the Croatian people and their benefactors during the war. They experienced our misfortune and our needs as if they were their own. Many people in the world heard about our small country through pilgrims from Medjugorje and helped the suffering people of our homeland in the most difficult times. They really demonstrated that they were trying to live according to the words of Our Lady from the Holy Scripture: " ... Do whatever he tells you ..." The parishioners of the parish of Medjugorje and all others who experienced their love, care and help always include them in their prayers and ask God's blessing to come down upon them.
THE SELFLESS HELP OF THE MALTESE ORDER
For the past two years, the Maltese Order from Germany has been taking care of the medical needs of the pilgrims here in Medjugorje. More than 4000 persons, pilgrims as well as parishioners, have sought their help. Also this year, the Maltese demonstrated their selflessness by helping pilgrims who sometimes needed to be transported in special vehicles to the airport in Split or to hospitals somewhere abroad. The Maltese order is also active in Lourdes, Rome and in many other places of pilgrimage throughout Europe and the rest of the world.
We want to take this opportunity to thank them from our heart and also on behalf of those who have experienced the blessings of their apostolate.
MISSIONARY JOURNEY OF FATHER SVETOZAR KRALJEVIC
Following the invitation of the organizer and pilgrims from Medjugorje, Father Zvetozar Kraljevic participated in the Marian Conference in Los Angeles, USA, from October 22nd to 24th. About 5000 faithful attended this meeting which, also this year, was organized by the 'Medjugorje Peace Conference'. This year marked the 10th anniversary of this Conference which had as its theme "Open Your Hearts to the Love of the Father". The eucharistic Mass which concluded the meeting was celebrated by Msgr. Tod Brown, the newly-named bishop of Orange County. Particularly impressive were the experiences of the priests and sisters, who had received their calling at such prayer meetings during the past years and the active commitment to spread the messages of peace of Our Lady in their midst. As so many times before, actions of love for needy brothers were visible: Money was collected for the renovation of the roof of the St.John's Church in Podmilacje near Jajce.
THE 100th ANNIVERSARY OF THE FRANCISCAN SISTERS
On the 23rd and 24th of October, the 100th annivesary of the Franciscan School-sisters Christ The King in the Hercegovina was celebrated. The sisters who work in the parish of Medjugorje belong to the province of the Holy Family in Hercegovina, which - at the moment - numbers 237 sisters. We are sure that many groups of pilgrims and individual pilgrims who come to Medjugorje are aware of the selfless daily work of these sisters. The main activity of this congregation is the education and upbringing of the young. In addition, the sisters care for the sick in hospitals and do pastoral service in the parishes in the Hercegovina. This important anniversary has been remembered throughout the entire year in various ways. The main celebration took place on October 23rd on which occasion the Provincial, Sister Iva Beslic, opened a symposium in Mostar. Those present were welcomed by the local bishop, Msgr. Ratko Peric, and the Provincial of the Franciscans in the Hercegovina, Father Tomislav Pervan. This festivity on the occasion of the 100th anniversary ended with the feast of the holy Eucharist, which was celebrated by the bishop of Banja Luka, Msgr. Franjo Komarici. In the name of all pilgrims we conveyed our congratulations to the sisters of this congregation and asked the Lord that he may bless their work and efforts.
INTERNATIONAL PRIEST MEETINGS
The fifth international Meeting of Priests "Priests in the School of Mary" will take place from June 30 to July 6, 2000. The theme of this meeting is, "Priest - A Man of the Holy Trinity and a Servant of the Body of Christ". The speakers will be Father Daniel Ange, Father James Manjackal, Father Rufus Pereira, Father Martin Ramoser, Don Cosimo Cavaluzzo, Sister Elvira Petrozzi, Father Jozo Zovko and Father Slavko Barbaric. The parish will give those priests who are attenting the meeting free lodging during their stay for the meeting. Please come to the parish office in Medjugorje upon your arrival and you will be given the name of the family you will be staying with and who will be taking care of you during your stay.
You can register for the meeting either via Fax: 00387-88-651-888 or in the Information Center of the shrine (Tel: 00387-88-651-988).
Published by: INFORMATIVNI CENTAR MIR - Svetiste Kraljice mira (Information Center MIR - Shrine of the Queen of Peace), 88266 Medjugorje, BiH, fax number: +387-88-651-444.
Last Modified 11/17/99