Today's world has eliminated the word "to serve" from its dictionary. We are free beings, we say, but for what? Really, free for what?
Let us turn toward the Medjugorje events. Should we serve them or with them serve ourselves for the accomplishment of our own purposes? I believe the answer is clear. What do we get through serving? Everyone who has opened themselves to the Medjugorje events knows what. Such a one has become a free person, full of peace and dignity, a person turned toward the other. Serving did not mean destroying the person, rather it helped in becoming more of a person.
Accordingly, we have a right to change the world by our serving. But let us change ourselves first. Let everything that we do be done in God's spirit, and not for the sake of our personal profit. And let us not always strive to publicize everything we do. True, that is also necessary, but it is more necessary that it be done.
Easter in Medjugorje
In Medjugorje during Holy Week and for Easter itself, new groups of pilgrims were arriving continuously. They wanted to prepare for and to celebrate as one the greatest Christian feast day of Easter. About ten thousand pilgrims celebrated Easter at the shrine of Medjugorje. Due to the great number of the faithful, the liturgy of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday was organized in nine languages - especially for each language group. The Medjugorje church, though big, hardly looked big these days and was not able to hold this multitude of pilgrims. Of the foreign pilgrims the most numerous were Austrians, Germans, Italians, Americans, French, Argentine, Poles, Czechs and Spanish. Exceptionally numerous during these days were the pilgrims from surrounding parishes that came to Medjugorje for their Easter confession. In regard to how many pilgrims visited Medjugorje during the Easter days, the fact also says a lot that confessions were heard each evening by a group of about twenty priests for about three hours during the evening prayer program.
During Lent, five courses of prayer and fasting were held in the "Domus Pacis" House of Prayer. About 200 pilgrims from home and abroad participated in them. The fasting and prayer have already become customary seminars during Advent and Lent, so that all the places are filled up even before the very beginning of the seminar.
Families of fallen defenders in Medjugorje
During Holy Week the families of fallen Croatian defenders visited Medjugorje while spending their holiday in Baska Voda under the organization of the Croatian Army. Medjugorje has become a genuine source of peace and hope for these families, especially during these days when everything refers to the light of resurrection and the hope that Easter bestows.
Italian Sculptor in Medjugorje
The Italian sculptor Carmelo Puzzolo is the number one artist in Italy and a great friend of medjugorje. With his own creations he has already several years ago left a permanent impression of his artistic talent on the area of Medjugorje. The stations of the Way of the Cross on Cross Mountain, the mysteries of the Rosary on the Hill of Apparition, and the statue of St. Leopold Mandic beside the church are Puzzolo's works. He recently visited Medjugorje again. Here is what he said on that occasion:
"With Medjugorje a new life began for me. A certainty came into me. I felt that God loves me, that he is merciful and that he forgives. Here I also became aware that Our Lady is truly present in my life and my work. Executing the Way of the Cross on Cross Mountain, I placed the image of Our Lady into every station. Our Lady was present everywhere except in the garden of Gethsemane. Our Lady is essentially helping us here to find Jesus. That is very important, because through Mary love, tenderness and goodness are discovered. Before Medjugorje Our Lady was very far away. It seems to me that today many priests and believers fall into some kind of amazing apathy precisely because they do not know a living presence of Our Lady. Finally, I would like to say that it seems to me most important that priests are coming to Medjugorje. That way they will be able to recognize and learn Our Lady's way of educating and continue teaching their own people in that same manner. Bishops should encourage priests to come to Medjugorje, to Our Lady's school. Priests must be the first witnesses. But I would recommend to everyone to accept Our Lady's messages and to live in agreement with them. Our Lady is really teaching us what is the best. Medjugorje is God's gift and the reality of God's reflection."
With the change over to the summer schedule the daily evening program in the church is from 6:00 to 9:00 pm (6:00 pm rosary, 7:00 pm Mass followed by the prayers of blessing and the third part of the rosary).
Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Altar is held from 10:00 am to 11:00 pm on Wednesday and Saturday and on Thursday immediately after the evening holy Mass. Every Sunday the peace rosary is prayed on the Hill of Apparition at 3:00 pm, and every Friday the Way of the Cross on Cross Mountain at the same time. All information in regard to the prayer program, the possibility of meetings with some of the Medjugorje Franciscans, as well as other announcements can be obtained daily by pilgrims from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm at the Information Booth of the shrine which is located beside the parish house or by phone at 650-400, except Sunday.
Published by : INFORMATIVNI CENTAR MIR - Svetiste Kraljice mira
(Information Center MIR - Shrine of the Queen of Peace),
88266 Medjugorje, BiH, fax number: +387-88-642-339.
Director: fra Miljenko Stojic.
You can receive the latest issue of the Press Bulletin at any time on your own fax machine in the tone
mode by dialing the Robofax in our Information Center at +387-88-65-15-55.
Published every other Wednesday.
Last Modified 04/25/96