Sunday, April 3, 2011

In Search of the Virgin Mary; The Medjugorje Chronicles

St. Blaise, Dubrovnick and Father Roy Oggero
Immersing oneself in the pilgrimage experience means abandoning one’s normal life and embracing in totality all that the Blessed Virgin Mary…that God, wishes for that person. Once one says, “Yes” and commits to the journey, they must push themselves…their ego, out of their own way. Hence exposing themselves to the entire richness of the trip from the grand and obvious, to nuances and subtleties that weave together a powerfully fulfilling, rewarding and enduring spiritual experience.

Part of this means continual prayer. Silently…openly…individually…or in groups. Sometimes, casually and other times more formal.

For Catholics, “mass” is the ultimate formal gathering of the body of the church, to praise, worship, confess, speak utter gratitude and receive Christ in their lives. During the journey, we participated in daily masses in various churches and hotels.

Understandably, for many, this can be an overload. But after all, this is what we went for…to find the Blessed Virgin Mary, get closer to God and have a spiritual…a divine encounter.

A significant blessing for our group was having Father Roy Oggero, a Basilian priest, as our spiritual leader. Father Roy, as most people call him, has a beautiful, loving soul coupled with a lively and humorous personality. It’s easy to feel love, warmth and the presence of God when he is in your company.

Masses were celebrated by Father Roy, with the exception of a few, in which he was a con-celebrant with many priests such as in Medjugorje. I’ll share more of that with you later.

The Church of St. Blaise is a magnificent 18th century Baroque church dedicated to the patron Saint and protector of Dubrovnick, the beautiful ancient port city on the Adriatic Sea.

George Bernard Shaw, the famous playwright, described Dubrovnick as, “the pearl of the Adriatic”. Unfortunately, “the pearl” wasn’t glowing the day we visited. It was a rather gloomy day, punctuated with rain storms and yet, it was still magical and beautiful.

St. Blaise holding the city of Dubrovnik

Ancient treasures abound inside St. Blaise Church.

This day we brought our own treasure…Father Roy! (Knowing Father Roy as I do, he’ll probably think I’m calling him ancient when he reads this…)
Having video camera in hand, I was able to capture much of our adventure including many of the masses. Father Roy and our group were gracious enough to indulge me as I attempted to record forever our experiences during the Medjugorje pilgrimage.

I invite you to participate in the mass at St. Blaise celebrated by Father Roy Oggero and listen to his insightful sermon. I believe you’ll be captivated by his powerful message delivered in his usual gentle, loving but “cut to the chase” fashion, as he discusses the reason for our lives.

The video is an edited version which does not cover the mass in its entirety (so don’t panic…it’s not an hour long…only about five minutes).

You don’t have to be Catholic to glean some pearls of wisdom from this. I believe it can serve all. If nothing else, you’ll get a glimpse into the Catholic mass, and enjoy the beauty of the Church of St. Blaise.

My continued purpose with the Medjugorje Chronicles and accompanying videos is to expose and enlighten. To help all of us tap into our spiritual being and connect with God.

Embrace the love!

Continue the journey!


Dr. Rick Barrett

P.S. More videos and stories to come…

1 comment:

elaine tang said...

Hi Doc
thank you for sharing the event & message in your blog, that those unable to be present in that Mass to get the message as well..
appreciated..rgds, elaine