Pilgrimage to Medugorje – June 16 – 27, 2018 Group A
June 16. I would like to share some personal feelings.
I had never joined any pilgrimage before now, so I had no expectations. On the first travel day, we had to transit at Istanbul, Turkey. It was very congested at the airport. On arrival at Sarajevo, we boarded a coach. I was told the journey to Medjugorje would take 3 hours. The coach was going up and down the mountains. I instinctively thought we were going through a fairy land. Because of the rain earlier, it was misty between the mountains. Then we were lucky, because it became sunny. We also had a nice lunch break, consisting of fresh grilled fish and roasted lamb. I felt so peaceful in the coach. Fr Leung led the Rosary during the journey to Medugorje.
June 17. Three of us shared a room. We were lucky the room had an air conditioner. I was told some rooms were steaming hot, and people were unable to sleep.
On the first evening there was heavy rain. We had to rush into St James Church, all of us soaking wet. We didn’t know what was going on. Our group members were scattered around. Then we realized it was Rosary time, and then Mass. We forgot about the dampness and being soaked through, and enjoyed the program. We felt so blessed that evening!
June 18. We had a Chinese Mass in a small Chapel, and then attended a talk by Father Leon. Unfortunately I dozed off during most of the session. Good thing we can watch the talk on youtube!
June 19. 6am – going up Apparition Hill was another experience for me. We climbed up the hill, stopping at various spots to pray the Rosary. We didn’t go to the very top of the hill, but stopped at the white statue of Mother Mary. We all had our different spots to offer our intentions! That evening we had confessions. Since Fr Leung’s queue was too long, in order to make it to Adoration at 10 pm, I had my confession with an Irish priest. He was very precise. I felt clean after he forgave my sins in the name of God!
June 20. Fr Leung was the main celebrant at the English mass at St James Church. In order to sit in the front row, a few of us had to stand very close to the front pews. That day we started our commitment to fast every Wednesday. However, it didn’t last. My weekly Friday Prayer group also committed to this fasting habit!
In the afternoon we had a sharing session back at the Panorama hotel. It was very touching, and I was moved to tears. Each of us basically introduced ourselves and talked about why we wanted to join this pilgrimage.
June 21. We went to Cross Mountain early in the morning. It wasn’t easy, and I’m glad I did the whole trip without too much problem!
June 22. Went to a church in Tihalijna. It has an amazingly beautiful statue of Mother Mary. We presented flowers to Our Lady, and Father Leung offered a Chinese Mass. We had another sharing at Panorama that afternoon. Again, it was touching to know why some people went on this pilgrimage so many times!
June 23. Mostar visit. Mostar is an old town outside Medugorje. We became tourists. We went shopping and had a lovely meal.
June 24. Sister Emmanuel’s talk was a bit repetitive, and I dozed off! Mass at Mother’s Village. It was good to know how the orphanage was being supported!
June25. Chinese Mass. Met another Chinese group, with Linda Siu/Ming sir (RIS ex-chairman) and their children. It’s their 2nd visit. They said it was phenomenal to see so many people this time!
June 26. Met Roland at Panorama. I shared his CDs with my Prayer Group after I returned to Hong Kong. I was lucky to see him at St. Joseph Church the following week.
June 27. Last day of the pilgrimage. Met group B that afternoon. 邵衛青執事 shared his experience in Medugorje. It was very touching. Coincidentally, I met this couple in Lourdes, France on July 7!
Overall, every day we prayed the Rosary, attended Mass and Adoration. It really showed me the power of group prayer. That is why prayer groups have to meet at least weekly in order to pray for one another!
The church fountain is where we refilled our water, what we call holy water. I brought some back for sick friends.
The outdoor altar is where we go for our daily 6pm Rosary, Mass, and Healing prayers for the sick. That’s where we put our little chairs and mats.
**every evening at 6:40 pm, the bell rings. It means Mother Mary is present. It’s very quiet and peaceful. Every time, I looked up at the sky. It was so blue that it seemed like a picture rather than a real sky. I also noticed that the bright stars were moving very fast during Adoration (between 10-11pm)!
I would like to express my gratitude to
1. Fr Leung. He is really God sent. He is a pleasant, humorous, and helpful person.
2. Our group leader Irene Paul. Undoubtedly very helpful and generous on all counts. A wonderful volunteer.
3. Kevin and Glenda. They have been supporting the HK group so much. It is appreciated.
4. Our tour guide Marijan Drmic. She looks very much like Mother Mary leading us on this pilgrimage. Thanks for her patience.
5. Our group C leader Virginia. I feel that now I know her better.
6. Pat, for always updating us with news from Medugorje and strengthening our faith 🙏🙏🙏
June A 2018