Tonight, June 25, 2022, the 41st anniversary of Our Lady's apparitions was solemnly celebrated in Medjugorje. The Holy Mass, with a multitude of believers and the concelebration of 268 priests, was celebrated by Fr. Jozo Grbeš, Provincial of the Herzegovinian Franciscan Province.
Among the concelebrants were the parish priest of Medjugorje, Fr. Marinko Šakota, the Provincial Vicar of Medjugorje, Fr. Miro Šego, the former provincial of the Herzegovinian Franciscan Province, Fr. Miljenko Šteko, and Fr. Miro Relota.
Introducing tonight's Mass, Fr. Jozo Grbeš said at the beginning that "while we celebrate the Eucharist, we are what we truly are".
"We are aware that we are an important part of something bigger than us and that we are connected to the whole world at this time. It is true that every hour, every minute, every day and every hour, somewhere in the world, the Holy Eucharist is celebrated, and we are a part of that'', said Fr. Jozo at the beginning of the Holy Mass.
In his homily, Fr. Jozo Grbeš spoke about the love we all need today, emphasising that he "believes that this love has brought you here: the love of the Mother, who invites us constantly and the love of Christ, who is the main goal of all".
"Maybe we understood everything in life, maybe we have a lot of knowledge, maybe we have a lot of intelligence, maybe a lot of education, maybe we have a lot of titles behind our names, maybe we went all over the world, maybe our face is on the front pages of newspapers, maybe everyone knows us, we may have conquered the world…, but if we did not understand love, we did not understand anything!
So much love is attached to the name of Medjugorje. So much love came down from that hill above Bijakovići. So much love is spread around the world with the name of Medjugorje. So much love has healed human bodies, human souls, so many healed wounds, raised people, reconciled destinies, raised families. I am sure you are familiar with that magnificent message, a reminder: "If you knew how much I love you, you would cry with joy!"
If we knew how good it is to forgive, we would never live in an argument. If we knew what a treasure it is to have peace, we would never seek conflict. If we knew how great grace is in repentance, we would never be arrogant. If we knew how divine it is to be simple, we would never complicate anyone’s life. If we knew how much power there is in humility we would never push for first places. If we knew how much power there is in selflessness, we would live a life of love. If we knew how blissful and upright it is to speak the truth, we would never sell ourselves to anyone. If we met Mary, we would know that Christ is the only Savior of the world, "said Fr. Jozo, telling us that" a lot of peace has entered people's hearts, families and the world called Medjugorje."
Medjugorje is Mary, Mary is love, and love is God. That link is so clear! Let's be aware of it. Don’t forget her and don’t just leave. Both Mary and love always lead to the God of love, Christ the Savior!
Therefore, I'm telling you and myself: let's not go home the same tonight. Let's not be the same! Let's take a step forward. We are called to be better, more perfect, more authentic, simpler, more humble. It's up to us too! It's always up to us! And it's just up to us! This opportunity today and tonight is a clear expression of mercy!'', said Fr. Jozo Grbeš in his homily on the 41st anniversary of Our Lady's apparitions in Medjugorje, invoking at the end "Mary, Our Lady of Love, Queen of Peace" to give us her peace.
Before the Holy Mass, a procession was held for the second time from the Apparition Hill to the Church of St. James, and many pilgrims from all over the world, parishioners of Medjugorje and surrounding places took part in that.
These days in Medjugorje, there were pilgrims from all continents of the world, from about thirty countries of the world. The parishioners prepared for the celebration with a Novena, and during those nine days at 4 pm they prayed the joyful and sorrowful mysteries of Our Lady's rosary on the Apparition Hill and prayed the Rosary at the White Dome of the parish church of St. James, during the evening prayer liturgical programme.
On the Eve of the 41st anniversary of Our Lady's apparitions, the 31st Peace Walk from Humac to Medjugorje and the votive pilgrimage to the Queen of Peace from Čitluk to Medjugorje were held, while the central evening Mass was celebrated by the parish priest of Humac, Fr. Ljubo Kurtović. (PHOTO)