Sunday, October 5, 2014

Medjugorje's Luminous Mysteries Mosaics

In keeping with October's theme of the Month of the Rosary, today's post seeks to not only encourage my fellow Catholics to honour Our Lady with a new or renewed Rosary Devotion, but also shares some of my personal experiences during my pilgrimage this summer in Medjugorje at the Luminous Mysteries mosaics.

I thought it fitting to share this post today, in part, as a continuation of the spirit with which Saint Pope John Paul II introduced the Luminous Mysteries in 2002, with his Apostolic Letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae.

A photo that displays the walking path at the back altar of St. James Church
The interlocking stone walking path at the back altar area of St. James Church where to
the left in this photo are the Luminous Mysteries mosaics.

Medjugorje is a place of many ideal prayer locations and the Luminous Mysteries mosaics is one such location. I can tell you from my own personal experience that praying at the Luminous Mysteries mosaics is truly a time of Divine Intimacy.

If you are currently in Medjugorje as part of a group pilgrimage and have not been informed about these mosaics in your orientation or become aware of them as part of your personal discovery, I hope that by reading this post, you will take the opportunity to pray at these mosaics during your remaining days in Medjugorje.

If you are reading this post as part of an on line research effort for your pilgrimage to Medjugorje, I hope it will help you to better understand the spiritual treasure that awaits you in Medjugorje. 

The Luminous Mysteries mosaics are located at the area adjacent to the back altar of St. James Church and flanked by the interlocking stone walking path leading to the Risen Christ statue. The top photo published with this post will give you a visual of where to find them should you be in Medjugorje.

Each mosaic is at least seven to eight feet in height and is approximately the same dimensions in width. The skill with which they were created is beyond professional and truly the result of gifted workmanship. One would be hard pressed to view these mosaics without coming to the conclusion that God sent many graces, inspiration and guidance to the artist(s) who worked in putting them together. They really are magnificent to look at and easily achieve their job of bringing pilgrims into the spirit of prayer, inviting each pilgrim to contemplate on the various individual mysteries presented in the imagery of each mosaic.

The second Luminous Mystery Mosaic in Medjugorje, the Wedding of Cana
Luminous Mystery Mosaic, the Wedding at Cana

This summer I had the privilege of staying in Medjugorje for several weeks. It was a time that afforded me the opportunity to meet many people and establish new friendships, experience wonderful sharing and connect with people from all over the world. It also allowed me to better acquaint myself with the people of Medjugorje, the culture of Herzegovina, the natural landscape, as well as to determine when would be the most optimal time to visit the various prayer locations, including the Luminous Mysteries mosaics.

I visited the Luminous Mysteries mosaics at different times of the day and night as part of my discovery and simply as a matter of obeying the inspirations of the Holy Spirit. It was an extension of what I experienced each day. Arising with thoughts of how each day would unfold, I concluded each evening with a special prayer of gratitude to God for the wonderful and spiritually beneficial days I experienced that were well beyond my expectations. Everyday in Medjugorje was amazing including my time at the Luminous Mysteries mosaics.

I had originally arrived in Medjugorje with fellow pilgrims as part of a pilgrim group. The pilgrim group's stay in Medjugorje was for one week. The pilgrimage schedule was full with a well developed daily agenda that took us to the many prayer locations and other places of interest. It was during that first week that I discovered the Luminous Mysteries mosaics and immediately felt very drawn to them. I did not visit them as much as I would have liked, in part due to the group pilgrimage setting I was in. It was something that I made a mental note about and set out to change during my second week and for the remainder of my stay in Medjugorje.

The fourth Luminous Mystery mosaic in Medjugorje, The Transfiguration
Luminous Mystery Mosaic, The Transfiguration

During my second week I began to make daily visits to the Luminous Mysteries mosaics, as part of my daily recitation of all fours sets of the mysteries of the Rosary.

Since the Evening Prayer Program included the group recitation of the Joyful, Sorrowful and Glorious Mysteries, I typically set out to recite the Luminous Mysteries at the mosaics prior to my participation at the Evening Prayer Program. I hope you will be encouraged to do likewise; it is time well spent.

If you have yet to discover and include the Luminous Mysteries in your recitation of the Rosary, I would like to recommend the reading of Saint Pope John Paul II's aforementioned Apostolic Letter Rosarium Virginis Mariae. Saint Pope John Paul II was well known for his Marian Devotion, one that animated his pontificate and is clearly evident in the writing of this document. It is a devotion that is spotlighted by his personal declaration that he soon made after his election to the papacy in October'1978, that the "...Rosary is my favourite prayer." (2) 

May the Blessed Virgin Mary inspire you to include the Luminous Mysteries in your Rosary Devotion.


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