How do we prepare our hearts for Medjugorje?

  1. It is a blessing to be able to go to Medjugorje on pilgrimage. Our Lady once told Marija, one of the visionaries, that all pilgrims who go to Medjugorje have been specially invited by Her. Many graces await them there. That is why we have to be grateful to Our Lady for Her invitation, and feel privileged to be the recipients of all the graces that Mother Mary has prepared for us.
  2. Going on pilgrimage to Medjugorje is like going on a retreat. It is not a sightseeing tour, where people go for fun and pleasure.
  3. We have to keep in mind the primary objective of the pilgrimage: Our Lady invited us to open our hearts and change our lives. Because Our Lady loves us so much, we have to obey all that She asks us to do.
  4. “Open your hearts” is a frequent message from Our Lady to each pilgrim. Let us be generous in allowing God to convert us while we are on pilgrimage, because that is the special time when He speaks to us, and it is up to us how much we want to open our hearts to receive His words. That is why we have to maintain a quiet and prayerful heart during our pilgrimage, in order to sustain a close relationship with Jesus and Mary.
  5. It can be said that being on pilgrimage in Medjugorje is like “having a taste of Heaven”. When our spiritual needs have been wonderfully met, then our physical needs will naturally decrease, and they become less and less important. While we are in Medjugorje, our hearts will experience extraordinary peace and happiness.
  6. In Medjugorje, we have to remember to take things at their face value. We have to accept with joy everything that happens. In this way, we and our loved ones will receive abundant graces. We have to learn how to love with our hearts, just as Jesus loved with His. When we are faced with temptations, instead of becoming frustrated, we should feel blessed that we have been given yet another chance to receive extra graces. A pilgrimage offers so many opportunities to get closer to Jesus and Mother Mary, and glorify God.
  7. Mother Mary Herself will take care of all our spiritual and physical needs and wants! Hopefully pilgrims won’t be too preoccupied with their temporal needs, such as whether the hotel room meets with their expectations, whether it’s air conditioned, whether the food is good, or the itinerary is too busy. Of course we at the Medjugorje Centre will do our best to arrange everything with everyone’s comfort in mind, but we hope that pilgrims will put their spiritual needs ahead of their physical ones.
  8. It is best to set aside a time for the purchase of religious articles, rather than go shopping every day. Shopping tends to distract us from our purpose, thus diminishing the graces that we can receive.
  9. Pilgrims should absolutely refrain from looking for miracles, such as examining the sky and the clouds for signs and wonders. Those who are in search of miracles do not have the right objective in going on this pilgrimage. Instead, by doing so, they have forfeited the blessings and graces prepared for them by Our Blessed Mother, and will go home empty-handed.
  10. While in Medjugorje, it is highly recommended that pilgrims not only go to Confession, but they should also do their utmost to make it a GOOD Confession. This is one of the most important parts of the program! The Sacrament of Reconciliation will cleanse our souls, getting rid of all the dirt and other obstacles that prevent us from listening attentively to what God has to say to us.
  11. Our pilgrimage should begin the moment we submit our registration, and not the night before we leave. That’s when we should start preparing our hearts for the meeting with Our Lady. Leaving this preparation to the last minute is not a good idea, because we will be inundated with other chores, such as packing, getting our tickets at the airport, or even catching up with the last few days of the “33-Day Consecration” prayers.
  12. Another way to prepare for our pilgrimage is to familiarize ourselves with Our Lady’s messages given in Medjugorje, Her apparitions, as well as testimonies offered by returning pilgrims. By doing so, we will have some basic knowledge and understanding of the things happening in Medjugorje when we arrive.
  13. Before we leave, we can write to Our Lady, and ask our family and friends to do the same! These letters are an expression of our true feelings, and a prayer from the innermost recesses of our hearts. After we arrive in Medjugorje, the letters can be given to the visionaries (for example, Vicka) or the group leader, or they can be deposited in the basket for intentions in the Information Centre. During Our Lady’s apparition, the letters will be placed at Her feet. At the same time, we ask Mother Mary to bless us, as well as the religious articles that we have purchased.
  14. If we carry too many burdens in our hearts, such as the worries of our everyday lives and the demands of our jobs, then we make it difficult for Mother Mary to enter our hearts and bestow Her graces. So, if we carry a heavy cross at the start of our journey, then we should plan to hand over our cross to Our Lady as soon as we arrive in Medjugorje. In return, She will grant us extraordinary graces and blessings. Once we get home, we have the responsibility to live Our Lady’s messages, offer testimony before others, and become apostles of Mother Mary’s messages.
  15. We hope that this has been helpful in preparing your hearts for the pilgrimage. Please join us in prayer for the entire pilgrimage. We hope that each pilgrim will come home with his/her cup running over with blessings.