M E D I T A T I O N
Today when adults say the word "youth", then that word along with many expectations also carries some resentment with it. And that even when speaking about one's own children. Yet one is precisely forgetting that adults created at last a part of that world which today we call "youth".
In the parish of Medjugorje we are immediately before "The Youth Week of Prayer". So far the meeting of previous years has manifested a gathering of youth who recognize God and are not satisfied with a superficial faith. Jesus Christ, whom they seek and find and wish to recognize still more profoundly, becomes a companion on their path of life, a person with a real voice in their plans, and their ideas about the world and about man. His example and word touches their life and being. Jesus becomes a person who does not have to be feared, before whom one does not have to tremble. The fruit of that is the confidence that is necessary toward both Jesus and the Church. And confidence is the condition for a mature religious practice and on the other hand the fruit of a lively spirituality.
The presence of Mary through the apparitions points the way to the Lord. In her nearness it is easier to find Jesus and follow Him, and clothe one's own life with his gospel. This is the experience of both many young and older people and we can rely on their testimony.
Fr. Ivan Landeka
N E W S
CELEBRATION OF THE FEAST OF ST. JAMES
On July 25th the feast of St. James, patron of the parish of Medjugorje, was solemnly celebrated. In the presence of a large number of the faithful the solemnity began with a procession to the park with the statue of our patron from the parish church. Fr. Tomislav Pervan, Provincial of the Hercegovina Province presided at the solemn Eucharist in the park.
The parish of Medjugorje was founded in 1892. Already then the parishioners decided to take St. James as their patron who is moreover the patron of all pilgrims! The old parish church was built in 1897. Since it was built on land prone to earthquakes, the construction of the new parish church was soon undertaken. The remains of the old church are located inside the circular park alongside the sanctuary. The new church was completed and blessed in 1969. At that time it was too large for the population of the day and no one really knew why it was built so large. Likewise back in 1892 none of the parishioners could have ever imagined that millions of pilgrims would come to their parish and that the patron of their parish church of St. James would become the patron of all those pilgrims.
BLESSING OF A NEW HALL
A new hall for the needs of the parish of Medjugorje and the pastoral care of pilgrims was blessed on June 28, 1998. In the presence of a large number of pilgrims and parishioners, the ritual blessing was done by Fr. Zoran Ostojic, a Franciscan born in the parish of Medjugorje. For fifty years Fr. Zoran lived in the United States of America working at the pastoral care of Croatian immigrants. Now in his later years he has returned to his native parish and is available as a confessor both to the parishioners and the pilgrims.
The new hall has a surface area of about 1000 square meters and with movable walls can be converted into three separate sections. The hall is air-conditioned and has a public address system that is connected with the parish church system. We are heartily grateful to all benefactors and parishioners who helped in the construction.
A NEW AREA FOR PRAYERC
On the eve of the 17th anniversary of Our Lady's apparitions the shrine of Medjugorje received a new place for prayer. The space with a cross beside the Church is for group prayer meetings and for individuals as a place where pilgrims can light candles.
OPENING OF FIRST AID STATION
On July 1, 1998 in the parish of Medjugorje a first aid station was opened. The Medjugorje pastor, Fr. Ivan Landeka, blessed the first aid station that will be operated by the Order of Malta from Cologne. It is located on the left side of the road that leads from the parish office toward Cross Mountain and will be at the service of the parishioners and pilgrims through the end of October this year.
"SCULPTURES FOR PEACE"
The photo-exhibition entitled "Sculptures For Peace" by author Jozo Ostojic of Medjugorje was opened July 10th on the grounds of the parish office of Medjugorje and will be open till the end of July. "Sculptures For Peace" were on exhibition during April and May 1998 at the Main Headquarters of the United Nations in New York. Coming from Medjugorje, the place of the apparitions of the Queen of Peace and from a country torn by war, they had a unique resonance. During June "Sculptures For Peace" were shown at an independent exhibition in Our World Gallery at The Stone Studio in Stamford, Connecticut and at the Art Festival in Philadelphia where "Sculptures For Peace" were given a center position among the works of forty artists from America and the world
The author of the display, Jozo Ostojic, was born in Medjugorje in 1969. The collision of the realities of war with the Medjugorje messages of peace gave rise to this great work. His sculptures speak of the refugees that are still continuing to roam this land and are at the same time an effort to arouse the conscience of a world asleep.
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 07/29/98