2014 August & September

August 1:  Father John, one of our
favorite priests, is here with a group from the States.
We shall always be
mindful of the generosity of this group.

Thank you Tim and to all.

August 2:

 Dijana and son, Ivan, are
volunteering today to lug in and portion out veggies and stuff.

And also helping is
Dijana’s daughter, Zeljana.  This laptop had been donated through / by
Aggie a while ago and has been anxiously awaited by Zeljana; it would be so
very useful in her
nursing classes.
We have been waiting to have the utilities installed in Hvratska.

But now
we hear Zeljana; "no, no, I want in English; for the important jobs here,
especially in Nursing, one has to learn English."


Today’s work crew!
8/03, Sunday

English Holy Mass is in the
Yellow Hall on Sundays.  The 25th Youth Festival has already started
and Medjugorje is jumping!

Always room for one more!
New this year (at least to us) is a booth
inviting any and all to pen (or pencil) a message of thanks or hope to our
Blessed Mother.

A great idea!

It turns out to be what seems to be a never ending banner carried by the
youths (up to 84) and displayed at the Fest!

Meanwhile in our
garage we start the sorting of items brought by the youth group (guided by
Tim and Father John) for the
poor whom we are so glad to serve in the poorer areas of this country.


We spot Dominique De Wilde in the crowd; the big smile makes her easy to

Husband Tony and mother, Irene, are also very
very welcomed by so many of their friends here in Medjugorje.

We had
recorded a program off the local TV station here last year, we got around to
watching it this week.  The program was on the early days of this
village; we were excited to see Tony as one of the faces ‘in the crowd’; so
easily recognizable even with the really long hair and the longer beard!

8/04: "What about me? Do you like my ‘new

We are visiting the camp in Stolac.  Mary will be checking over the
condition of the school book bags and the school supplies.

We bring the bags home and will give then a ‘freshing up; the papers
within will be reviewed and we will get all the latest teacher input!

We have to give an ‘A’ (100 or 5 depending on
the grading system) for the neat art work.
   Sabahudin has come into
possession of an IPAD; it seems to be alive but limited; can it be fixed?

Mary is quizzing the kids and finding out
whether anyone has ‘fried their brains’ by thinking too too hard during
these hot summer days; the kids get a kick out of that question.

Mary says
that is a ‘Bob question.

Time for Amela and
Mary to just sit and ponder.

The truck part has been found and installed. 
We are curious as to how one gets a "ROMA…." license plate.
8/05:  Jelka and Mario have agreed to
meet us at the gas station next to the Mercator Grocery in Capljina; they
will bring veggies for our ‘clients.

We spot the two a mile or so from the appointed meeting spot but we get together.

   Then off to the camp in
Domanovici; Mama Darija has fixed a tomato dish and is busy serving at the
outdoor veranda.
We tell Ana that we have brought stuff,
including tooth paste and tooth brushes.

Ana is quick to tell
us that she will certainly accept the tooth stuff but will wait to use same
until her teeth show up better.
Snjezana just smiles and seems to say "I just
can’t figure out these grown ups".

8/8 When we are out grocery shopping we
always seem to keep an eye out for a particular ham; it is the one wrapped
in a silver paper and produced by a particular company; we usually buy
slices from it.

Joseph spots one, a whole
one!  Joseph would have to share
The ‘Oasis of Peace has a visiting group.

Joseph delivers the meat there to one of our favorite priests, Father


We meet after Mass with Nisha and
daughter, Emily.

  A new signboard has suddenly appeared
on the church property!

Don’t know whose idea.

Cute but we wonder why it is just in English.


We had received a phone call from Zorica  to tell us that she and the husband along with the
6 children will be packing up and moving to an area where the husband’s
relatives live (we do not know yet where that is; we do know that the
husband’s father was here for a bit; then went back (Italy) because his wife
and wheel chair bound daughter could not get into this country).

We have brought food and our good bys.



We want to wish everyone good luck and give our
promise of prayers to Zorica and Sefky and to all the children; we find they will be going to

   The kids are lining up to say
goodby and to get and give a 5 minute or so hug to Mary.
This is the bestest hug!

Oh, oh , we see tearing.
And the fellows take a turn.

Gabriela gets right in there.
Make it last and
last; it will be a long long time before we see you again.

Please remember your friends here.  We
pass a business card to Gabriela so that she can contact us ‘just in case.
 The trailer is gone; the place is
stripped, bridges are burned, no turning back now.

We stop by Domanovici and admire the lovely
dress on Ana.
August 15; Feast of the Assumption.

The fellows were hoping we would remember them.

A good reason to visit the fellows at the 4
corners area.
Not only food but shirts and shorts and
toiletries and socks all find a good home.

The caps go fast but this one that Joseph now
sports was just not grabbed at!

Joseph now models and shortly some one
asks for the hat!

Bob and Joseph may be reaching for the same
food item.

  We know they are not
blessing the bread.

Mario asks "May I have another food bag? I have taken in
a woman".

"No, food bags are only for those who come here to receive them. 
What do you mean? Have you gotten married?"

"No, she was homeless and I am helping".


Maja’s 16th birthday!  Maja
(daughter of Ivan and Marina) has written
an article and it appears in the Medjugorje Glasnik Mira!



Aug. 19: Some of us just hate to leave Medjugorje!
However we are available to travel to a
nearby village and dine with Vinka’s relatives!

Vinka and brother
and two sister Sisters gather for a great feast.
Do hope that Sister is not playing, what was
that latest one, ‘turtle crossing the road?

A family portrait.
Mary, Mary, where have you been? We have not
seen you in any of the pictures?

Oh yeh, you took the pictures.

Zeljko Barbaric
from Siroki Brijeg; we met him this past February?

Fra Zeljko

was seen on the altar here this morning (Aug. 25) con-celebrating the 7:30 Croatian

  We three approached him after the Mass and he was surprised to see
us. He (and some of his cousins and other relatives) have walked all night
from Siroki Brijeg to arrive here in Medjugorje a short time before Mass…just


Medjugorje has its very own DRONE!

this in the sky and, later viewing the images it can take makes one run to
the Google app and search for the item!

And you can buy your very own with a decent camera and maybe an extra
battery for $1695.00!


had this image on their web site; it is a night time image of the Youth



Sister Emmanuel’s letter refers to a daytime image of that same Youth





We view some of the DVDs’ of the Youth
Festival; our Franciscan priests and seminarians are really ‘jiving!

  8/28:  While back in ‘waltz land Bob,         finally in an upright picture,
smiles with our friend, Suzanne.


And then we go dine at the Brotnjo in Citluk;
Mary & Bob, Father Kevin, Suzanne and Joseph.

Oh, is that free platter of
prosciutto and cheese for us?

At the new ’round about between Medjugorje
and Citluk, a statue has appeared; it is of our Blessed Mother with the baby
Jesus in her arms.

Beautiful; we do not know who is responsible.

We make a visit to Jelka, drop off some
funds for their new farm project (thanks to ‘Help for the Hungry and
Homeless) and some groceries.

We pick up some peppers, potatoes and other items from there.

A stop is made to see Jagoda; she has a
bouquet for us; we have groceries for her.
Then on to Dragica and her daughters (they
have a bouquet for us!).

Antonia is to be married in December; the next
daughter, Mirjana (pictured here), in line has gotten all the information on her driver training
course (along with the funding estimate).

Then on to the two sisters, Ilka and Anica. 
Bob wants to check in with the tree being used now for holding up the
clothes line.

  The tree is about the same age as Bob so Bob is glad
that the tree is still standing and is still kind of useful.

Ilka is so glad to
see company; Anica is content to just sit and wait.

Mary and Ilka chat a bit.

Did you bring ??

Yes we did.

We arrange to meet Dijana and son, Ivan
at the gas station. 
Ivan has a knack for auto mechanics and Joseph encourages that route by
bringing Ivan a beautiful set of mechanic tools!

8/31:  Three guys pounding the keys! 
Tim is donating a lap top and the other two guys are probably wishing it
would be theirs!

But no, there is a local fellow who, we are sure, would
love to have this!

Thank you Tim!

9/01: Monday

OK we are here at the Capljina
Evangelical Church with two car loads.  Where is everybody?

 Everybody grab a box or a bundle and follow
Suzanne into the Community room.
In overload, one of the local boys volunteers.

Dijana and Mary are setting up the displays
of the clothing and the shoes and the toiletries.

Big day is tomorrow!

We will be ready for the rush by the needy

Zeljana is always ready to volunteer; to
Looking better; we have brought book bags 
and the church is also providing some; theirs have the school supplies
already in their bags along with a good sweater.

Flour and oil and sugar and yeast and
potatoes etc. is in position.
9/02:  Tuesday; the crowd has gathered. 
Jelka and family have already delivered bags of potatoes, peppers, onions
The local store has already delivered bags of flour and oil.

Let us see; where are you on the list? Did we
get your family shoe sizes?
Our volunteers are here again today.

Sure, we can help.  And we see that Luka
is taking up his position.
Well, that’s over; every thing is gone; every
one has gone. Now it is up to the clean up crew to put everything back to

That is Maja handling the broom.

Sept. 4

Luka is chosen to be the recipient
of the donated computer.  Luka will be entering first year University
up north in Croatia.

Good luck Luka.


The group at Domanovici has gotten an OK from
the local school (it is just down the street).  The two kids will both
be entering first grade.

  They are excited; everyone is excited!

We have brought bags and school supplies (and food).

Andreja is with us today. The kids are
checking to see what all is in the bag.
Oonagh and Joseph are also part of the team;
the kids could not be happier.

Joseph has brought classy pencil boxes!
Maja demonstrates
the school stuff.

Marijano’s big smile comes forth when he
finds that he will be able to receive some funding for that all important
trip to Sarajevo to the eye specialist.

  The Capljina eye doctor has
examined and has suggested his going to the specialist in Mostar; the Mostar
specialist has examined and has suggested his going to the eye specialist in

A real nice fellow; talented in sketching but
now sees limitations as he finds his eyesight is disappearing.


We can never forget the camp in Stolac; we
are very happy that Zorica and family have not moved after all; it would
have been better for them if they had made it.

  They made it to the
Italian border but then were told to go back home.

Zorica phoned to give us the news!

   The trailer is gone; the home has to be put
back together with whatever can be found.

         A stove is in position but not too much
proper wood can be found in this area.
But the stove does find use as a good place
to sit and rest and talk.

We have brought edibles.
We have brought help along with the food.

Zorica and family line up in front of their
new possession, a car.

It looks pretty good on the outside but the inside
is a disaster.

Zorica has already phoned; the car will not start in the mornings; can we

We are all too familiar with pushing cars to get them started; it is a
part of almost every one’s life.


  Matthew comes to visit; he is
a great guy, a great humanitarian.

What is the excitement?

Who can be in that
car to cause all the cries and the crying?

It’s Janet; our mentor.  Their answer to
their prayers for the last 10 years or so.

Dijana and family are so very happy to see
Janet again; everyone is crying.
Janet settles in; just like old times. 
So much to catch up on; so much to see, so much to hear.

    Sharing life’s happenings
from both sides.
Zeljana rushes to show Janet her laptop!

Janet gets to see the Confirmation pictures;
new memories.
     A real family
portrait; created out of love and respect.

  Later at a
restaurant Bob wipes away the tears and
beams with happiness at the dessert display.
Joseph is just happy to be in Janet’s company
once again.


The house at Domanovici; some shoes
and things have been brought for the school kids.

We hear that their teacher has really really welcomed them as new
students and close neighbors.

A good start.



Ajlana shows off the new sneakers.

Ana wants so very much to thank Joseph for
the beautiful pencil box.
And everyone wants to see and be very
impressed by Ana’s new hair do.

Marijano and Janet have a chat at the table.
Next stop!  Janja and Teresa and Niki. 
They have continued to pray for Janet daily.  We do believe that
prayers from families such as these are placed ‘first in line.

Niki always wants to ‘scoot over and be next
to Joseph especially for the picture taking.

We note that Father Peter Rookey has just passed away.

´healing priest´, Father Peter Mary Rookey, O.S.M, received Christ’s Gift
of Healing in 1948. Since then, thousands of healings have been reported
worldwide. Witness letters, some with medical consensus, have been
submitted to the International Compassion Ministry. When asked about the
healings, Father Rookey simply says, "I just do what He told us to do and
the people are delivered and healed. We are answering the last command of
Jesus,´ . . . They shall lay their hands upon the sick, and they shall
recover´ (Mk 16:18).

from the Xlibris Book Information

Oct. 12 is Father Rookey’s birthday (he was 97 years
of age with 73 years of it as a


October 2010



dear and holy Fr. Peter Mary Rookey has gone to his eternal reward. Father
passed away in his sleep last night (Sept. 10, 2014) at the Basilica of Our
Lady of Sorrows in Chicago.
Father is the reason Our Sorrowful Mother’s Ministry was born. It’s
necessary to get a bit of background information to help you better
understand. Everyone has a Fr. Rookey story; this one is ours……
The above is excerpted from




One of our favorite priests; one of our
favorite prayers.

We always add our special intentions just before the

Thank you Father Rookey.

A blessing that Father Rookey agreed and Mary arranged for Ivan (our
driver) to have Father go to the Pansion (Mirjana’s) where the pilgrims were
staying who had just been involved in the ‘Red Bus accident coming into
Medjugorje (2007).
Father blessed and prayed over each pilgrim,

Father Rookey’s Miracle Prayer

Lord Jesus, I come before you, just as I
am, I am sorry for my sins, I repent of my sins, please forgive me. In your
Name, I forgive all others for what they have done against me. I renounce
Satan, the evil spirits and all their works. I give you my entire self, Lord
Jesus, now and forever.  I invite you into my life, Jesus.  I accept you as
my Lord, God and Savior. Heal me, change me, strengthen me in body, soul,
and spirit.

Come Lord Jesus, cover me with your
Precious Blood, and fill me with your Holy Spirit. I love you Lord Jesus. I
praise you Jesus. I thank you Jesus.  I shall follow you every day of my
life.   Amen.

Mary, My Mother, Queen of Peace, St.
Peregrine, the cancer saint, all the Angels and Saints, please help me. 

Prayer © 1993 Peter M. Rookey and Servite
Fathers, O.S.M. 


Sept. 12

 Three of our very best friends
and enablers,
Jane, Patrick and Ivan.

Mary and Janet; we all admire Janet so very
much for her spunk, her sharing, her ‘getting it done’, she has been and is
an example to us all. "The lamp might be moved, but the light is still on!"

Thank you Janet.

God bless

And more friends are waiting!
Today is ‘shoe-day’; thank you Oonagh!

are measured with our device; the proper size shoes are brought out from the
box; usually it is not the right size.

  But we have brought, we think, all kids sizes.

Spare donated luggage is brought filled with
clothes bought and or donated by many many pilgrims.

 The kids are
fitted with the proper school clothes and they look great.  Gabriela
models one of her ‘new outfits!

We are ‘taken back when we spot the kids on the floor taking turns with the
sharp knife; stabbing into the bread (and later the cheese and cold cuts).

No one has eaten this morning; the school kids can look forward to lunch
time when they, like other kids, can run across the street and get something
from the deli.

  The deli is good enough to put these kids food items ‘on the
books.  We can pay the tab later, once every couple of months.

We understand better how much this ‘sharing is needed.

Sept. 13:
And ‘on the other side of the world, Frank and Sheila, two of our very best
enablers and friends are traveling.

Frank is persuaded to ‘ model’ at M & S store in Dublin.  We are so
excited because he will maybe receive so many perks and because, when they
shop, their ‘extras find a way to the needy here in Bosnia.

Thank you Frank and Sheila.

  Sheila also maybe has received a contract?

We do hope that this is
a one time gig and that they will be back in Medjugorje very soon.


  Mary knocks on Jagoda’s door;
no answer.  Mary tries the knob; it is locked!

Where is Jagoda?

Joseph arranges a tree branch to hold the
bags up away from any animals.

There she is!  Just down the street. 
Gathering twigs to start the fire.

 Jagoda goes through joy and then
tears and then back to joy on hearing there is food at the house!

Jelka and family have been wanting to build a
pig pen and smoke house.

They have done the investigating, have planned
the site.  It could sit on the hill; pigs have the lower floor; the
smoke house on top; the family will do most of the labor.

What a team!
And Joseph; he is looking for a use to put
this lovely flowering plant of Jelka’s to good use!

Does it enhance?

We have arranged to meet Sergio; he had
called and let us know that he has some funds to return to Joseph.  The
loan is being paid ‘on time as we knew it would be.

Alexandra is back!  She has been
to the States for a bit and now is glad to be home in Medjugorje.

Already working today Alexandra has picked up a
back seat load of clothes, blankets, dental products, toiletries, shoes, all
brought to Medjugorje for the needy by Pat and Jack D. and their ‘team.

Thank you all, so very much!

Bob gets a ‘glad to be back hug from
And we start sorting and planning and
checking the needs lists.

Beautiful handiwork; so many will be so
Ready to bag, ready to deliver!

The weather
is just beginning to turn cooler; this is the right time.

Marko returned for his Tuesday appointment;
received contacts to try to slow down the progression of the keratoconus

The adventures of Marijano!

The doctor in
Sarajevo was called and an appointment could be made: the analysis and
possible operation was quoted at 2105 KM and any operation would require a
stay in that area of 3 or so days.

We had to do it; we went to Domanovici, passed 2,700 ($2,200); Mary brought
along    empty envelopes (7 of them); explained that the money should be
divided and carried "under cover", in separate pockets; maybe in the socks.  
Big smile.  Yes, yes.

  Marko went with him;  they
had the appointment on a Friday;  the doctor advised against the
operation at this time (it will be a last resort) and made a further
appointment for the following Tuesday.  Marijano was calling us every
few hours to report the feedback and to ask for advice.

Saturday the two fellows met up with a Sarajevo friend at
a coffee shop; left to take the bus back to the hotel; realized the wallet
was gone from the back pocket with ALL of the money gone!



They went back to the cafe; explained the problem;
called the local friend; called us in tears; bothered our sleep that night;
we figured it was picked and gone; we prayed.
Marijano could not believe that anyone would steal that!  We had always
assumed that no one could top a Romani gypsy guy as far as being ‘street

The two returned home, broke, no
refund given on the booked 3 night hotel stay.  Sunday morning we get
another call;  the local friend had gone to the coffee shop; talked to
the owner (friend?) and the money and wallet recovered!

We have seen Marijano and he has returned the

End of story; just had to share.



 Prayers are always being answered!

Love is always being shown!

Faith is always being shared!

We are excited!

We will order!