MEETING OF THE EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE OF BOSNIA AND HERCEGOVINA
The newly formed Episcopal Conference of Bosnia and Hercegovina held its first session in Mostar from January 27 - 29, 1995. The Declaration published at the end of the meeting makes no reference to the events in Medjugorje although pilgrims are very interested in them.
MISSIONARY TRIP OF FR. SLAVKO BARBARIC
Fr. Slavko Barbaric travelled to 8 countries of Latin American for a month and met with the many friends of Medjugorje and with former pilgrims. He returned to Medjugorje February 13. In Guatemala, a country exhausted by 14 years of civil war, many earthquakes and poverty, the local priests testified that the message of Medjugorje brought new inspiration and renewal to the people. In Salvador Fr. Slavko was welcomed by the President's family and he later had a long and friendly conversation with them. In Equador, Peru and Chile Fr. Slavko led numerous prayer meetings in which great numbers of the faithful participated. In Equador he met with Bernadino Cardinal Echeverrio who was very interested in Medjugorje and accepts it wholeheartedly. In Bolivia's capital city La Paz 6000 people were present at the prayer meeting which was authorized in writing by Archbishop Luis Sainz Hinojosa himself. During his three days in Paraguay about 2000 faithful took part in the meetings. Archbishop Felipe Santiago Benitez, had personally consulted the Holy Father in Rome to know if he could approve the visit of a priest from Medjugorje to his diocese. The Pope answered him saying, "Approve everything that concerns Medjugorje." The last country was Argentina where he led many prayer meetings in Buenos Aires and a very big one in Cordoba. During this visit he met with the Papal Nuncio Giulio Calabrese who expressed his wish to visit Medjugorje. Fr. Slavko concluded with two prayer meetings in Italy on his way back home.
THE CUSTOS OF THE FRANCISCAN CUSTODY OF MOZAMBIQUE IN MEDJUGORJE
Medjugorje is a place where people from all over the world meet and on February 11, 1995 Fr. Adriano Langa visited Medjugorje. He is Custos of the Mozambique Franciscan Custody, which belongs to the Franciscan Province of Portugal. On the occasion of his visit Fr. Adriano said:
"I'm in Medjugorje for the first time even though I've heard about it for a long time. The Church of Mozambique knows Medjugorje well, but the faithful do not know it very well yet. The newspapers and television do not cover Medjugorje and although the communist regime has fallen, we still do not have a Catholic newspaper. Presently there are two government newspapers but they are not interested in religious events occurring outside of Mozambique. Our society, having been systematically destroyed by communism, must face the problems of poverty, drugs and the influence of western lifestyles. Although it is a decadent model it especially attracts the youth. Our effort is to draw them away from this model and to defeat it.
Through my presence in Medjugorje I wish to confirm the presence of the Franciscans of Mozambique. My impressions are very positive. I admire the faith of the people coming here to pray and I admire the work of the Franciscans with the faithful as well. I feel how the Franciscans support those who come here and this is a very important attitude for proclaiming the Gospel. Only by being close to man, can we help him to walk the right way. So be courageous and go on supporting your people too, because they need help and support during these times of great suffering."
A NEW FRANCISCAN FRIARY IN ZAGREB
After 50 years of having to study outside their own country, the Franciscan students for the priesthood from Hercegovina will soon have their own residential friary in Zagreb. In 1945 the communists violently appropriated the Franciscan friary. Now they will have their own place again thanks to the generosity of friends and benefactors. We wish to thank wholeheartedly all those who made possible the realization of this great project, although it is not yet completed due to the lack of funds.
THE NEW COMMUNITIES IN MEDJUGORJE
In addition to the Franciscans friars of the Mostar Province of the Assumption and the Franciscan sisters of Christ the King Province of Herzegovina some new communities from abroad are living and operating in the parish of Medjugorje. They are Communita Cenacolo, Oasis of Peace and Casa Internazionale della Pace from Italy and the Community of the Beatitudes from France. There are also some houses with a specific apostolate. The Italian Casa di San Giuseppe for pilgrims, the Communita Piergiorgio for the sick and the Medjugorje Croatian Childrens' Village providing hospitality and assistance to orphans from the war.
This Press Bulletin will introduce these communities and their work beginning with the Communita Cenacolo. It was founded in 1982 by Sister Elvira Petrozzi. She wanted to help drug addicts but with the primary aim of leading them to discover and to live true Christian values. Besides the main house in Saluzzo, Italy, the community has about 20 other houses in Europe and the United States. Sister Elvira decided to open one in Medjugorje and did so on June 1, 1991 because Medjugorje is a place of special graces particularly for young people seeking the path of truth.The community lives on providence. The young men of Communita Cenacolo have strong testimonies about their own conversions and are available to meet with pilgrims.
NEW BOOKS AND PUBLICATIONS
Anyone interested in presenting a book, a scientific publication or an article about Medjugorje in the pages of the Press Bulletin are invited to submit a copy to us. In this issue we announce Fr. Peter's new book: 1. Fr. Petar Ljubicic, The Call of the Queen of Peace. Glas Mira Edition, Medjugorje. January 1995. 296 pages.
Published by: INFORMATIVNI CENTAR MIR - Svetiste Kraljice Mira (Information Center MIR - Shrine of the Queen of Peace), 88266 Medjugorje.
Last Modified 11/22/2002