Youth pilgrimage to Medugorje first posted 14 August 2001

 MARYLAND - first posted 14 August 2001 330 words

Youth pilgrimage to Medugorje

Photographer Diana Stillwell from Patuxent River, Maryland, sent us this personal account

More than 15,000 people of all ages attended the annual Youth Pilgrimage at Medugorje, on 31 July. Despite daily temperatures ranging from 110 to 113 degrees, and no trees for shade, young people from all parts of the globe participated in daily Mass, recitation of the rosary and Benediction.

It was awesome seeing these teenagers gathering to participate in a six mile procession, following Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, singing hymns of praise and glory overcoming the language barriers. Many climbed apparition hill and Mt. Krejvac and camped out overnight.

This was my second visit to Medugorje. The first was in December 1995, the year my son died by drowning while trying to save the life of his friend. I went seeking comfort. Not too long ago I attended a Marion Conference in Pittsburgh and felt drawn to return.

I had originally signed up for a pilgrimage in November as I really didn't want to be around young people, and do not like hot weather. But on my way to Mass, I heard a voice inside telling me to go in July with the youth so I changed my plans.

We had 20 people in our group. I am glad I went, met many wonderful people, shared the story of my son hoping that the youth would realize they are not superhuman but are vulnerable and should live each day of their lives as good Christians.

We were so blessed on this trip. The only problem we had was returning to the real world where it is difficult to pray like we did while at Medugorje. I know the teens in our group have grown spiritually. We all promised to pray for one another. I know those who attended will go home and spread the word of Our Lady which is to return to her Son and pray, pray, pray.

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