“Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.”
To all parishioners, pilgrims, friends, benefactors, and to all men of goodwill a
Blessed and Happy Easter!
Parish priest and the Franciscans
The center of the whole liturgical year is Christ’s Passion, Death and Resurrection, known as Paschal Mystery. That holy period before Easter was celebrated this year with participation of many parishioners, along with huge number of pilgrims from various countries that came to Medjugorje this Easter. Liturgical celebrations that began on Holy Thursday turned out the whole area around the church of St. James into huge prayer space. On Good Friday many pilgrims were climbing the Cross Mountain throughout the whole day, in smaller or bigger and were praying the Way of the Cross in their own language. Croatian pilgrims and parishioners started organized prayer of the Way of the Cross at 11 a.m. from the base of the mountain. Prayer of the Rosary began at 5 p.m. and Good Friday Service at 6 p.m.
Holy Saturday was day of silent prayer and meditation in and around the church of St. James in Medjugorje. As it was getting dark, at 8 p.m. prayer of Rosary began as preparation for Easter Vigil. Finally, at 9 p.m. “mother of all vigils” started and Fr. Danko Perutina was the main celebrant along with 45 other priests that concelebrated.
Holy Masses on Easter Sunday in Croatian language were at 8, 11 a.m. and 6 p.m. We need to mention that liturgical services were translated in many world languages on each of these days, and there were two video walls that were placed outside the church during the Holy Saturday Vigil Mass.
With celebration of Palm Sunday or the Sunday of Passion of Our Lord, Church entered Holy Week, highlight of preparation for Feast of Resurrection of Our Lord. In Medjugorje, as well as in the previous years, celebration of Palm Sunday began on the ruins of the old parish church of St. James, at 10.30 a.m. In liturgical procession, after reading Gospel on entering of Our Lord in Jerusalem and blessing of the olive branches, all participants including altar children, readers, singers, priests, parishioners and pilgrims made their way towards the White Dome of the church of St. James, where central Holy Mass at 11.a.m. was celebrated. Along with parishioners, there were many pilgrims from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and foreign countries. Biggest represented group was from Austria. During the day Holy Masses were celebrated in Spanish, Dutch, English, Italian, German and of course, Croatian language.
Many pilgrims also participated in prayer of the Rosary that takes place every Sunday at 2 p.m. on the Apparition Hill.