August 27, 2013
[Source: Medjugorje Today]
Organizers estimate that visionary Vicka Ivankovic-Mijatovic met a quarter of the Christian population during her one-week stay in Israel and Palestine. Devotion to prayer was revived and will continue, priest says. Mary assured attendees that she and Jesus never left The Holy Land.
Vicka greets the crowd of about 10,000 people in Bethlehem on August 25. Photo: Jeries Photography / Facebook
Medjugorje visionary Vicka Ivankovic-Mijatovic was seen and heard by 25 percent of the Christian population during her August 19-26 stay in The Holy Land, organizers of the first international Maranatha pilgrimage are estimating.
“I am completely satisfied with the response. Having Vicka with us here fulfills my dream. Today, Medjugorje is present in every Christian family and community in The Holy Land. People are asking questions about how to connect to the Maranatha Movement for the healing of humanity. I do not have words to describe my feelings” Maranatha world coordinator Sabrina Covic-Radojicic tells the Croatian daily Vecernji List.
Vicka returned to Medjugorje on Monday, also very much pleased with the events of the week.
Procession before Vicka’s apparition in Maelia on August 21
“I am overjoyed. I have been in the Holy Land before, but I never could bring Our Lady’s message. I do not know why I could not, only God knows. Obviously it was time for people to hear. But, behold, the time has come. People have heard and will hear the message. But this should not stop here, prayer for the healing of people should continue. More than ever, humanity needs prayer” Vicka tells the Croatian paper.
And devotion to prayer will continue, says Fr. Nadeem Shakouri, the pastor of Maelia where Vicka’s apparition was attended by about 13,000 people on August 21.
“I am delighted. Only the Lord could muster this crowd. I thank Him for the gift of Vicka’s arrival. It gives us hope that peace is possible in these regions. He asks us to continue to pray not only during Vicka’s stay in the Holy Land, but also after her departure. Pray for all the sick hearts awaiting recovery, and for all who witnessed these precious days and who will themselves become carriers of the messages” Fr. Shakouri tells Vecernji List.
Vicka addressing the crowd in Bethlehem on August 25. Photo: Jeries Photography / Facebook
The priest was further uplifted by the message the Virgin Mary passed on from the apparition in Maelia.
“Our Lady’s message today encourages us because she told the faithful of the Holy Land that she has been with us all the time with her Son, and that they never left. We believers from Galilee will never forget these days. In her honor we bless the statue which we brought from Medjugorje one month ago, that we will be constantly reminded of this day” says Fr. Shakouri.
On August 24, Fouad Boutros Ibrahim Twal, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, ”expressed his fraternal hospitality” and thanked for the devotion to recollection and prayer, and for the joy offered to all who met Vicka whom he welcomed to The Holy Land, Vecernji List further reports.
With Fouad Boutros Ibrahim Twal, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem far right, Vicka’s visit united the highest ranking clerics in The Holy Land. Photo: Jozo Ivankovic / Facebook
Both he and Elias Shakouri, the Bishop of the Melkite Catholic Church, were invited by Maranatha organizers to participate in the international Youth Festival in Medjugorje next year, Maranatha world coordinator Sabrina Covic-Radojicic informs.