UCM News

Deacon Peter Marshall the UCM chaplain and his wife Susan geve a talk on Medjugorje to the AGM on Saturday 10 February 2024. Since about the year 2000 Pete and his wife Sue have been arranging for pilgrims to travel to visit the Marian shrine in Medjugorje in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Although the church of St James in Medjugorje is Catholic, Christians of every denomination flock there, together with many non-Christians.
In 1981 on 24 June, four young people were reported to have witnessed an apparition on a hill outside the village. The following day two more also said they saw it. These children were aged between 10 and 16. They described in a brilliant light the figure of a beautiful young woman. During the third apparition she told them that she was the Blessed Virgin Mary, Queen of Peace. Since these events thirty million pilgrims from every corner of the globe have flocked to Medjugorje.
As news of these extraordinary events in Medjugorje spread, the Communist government reacted with repression. Police and troops were sent to the village, the visionaries were detained for psychiatric examination and the village people harassed. The parish priest at the time Fr. Jozo Zovko a Franciscan,  was arrested by the secret police and imprisoned for 18 months. Throughout that troubled period, the visionaries said that the Virgin continued to appear to them daily. The authorities ceased harassment and finally visitors were welcomed.
Medjugorje is not about signs and wonders, although many have been reported. The most important and numerous wonders have been the spiritual healings and conversions in which people have changed their lives and become reconciled with God and each other. In this holy place of Medjugorje there is a great feeling of peace and joy. Often, one pilgrimage is not enough and pilgrims find themselves returning there again and again. The basic message of Medjugorje is Peace, through commitment to God, Reconciliation, Prayer and Fasting.