On the way to the Adriatic

Along the way to Maribor, the peregrinating Icon of Czestochowa would stop in a few smaller towns.  In effect, the Icon was almost an hour late, but the residents of Maribor waited for "Her" perseveringly.  Both, the young and the old, greeted Her with fervent prayers, singing, smiling faces, and even with tears, - gathering around Our Lady's Icon.  The scouts solemnly brought the Icon into the church and placed it near the tomb of the blessed Anton Martin Slomšek, the Bishop of Lavant, who is the first Slovenian "Blessed", beatified by the late Bl. Pope John Paul II during his pilgrimage to Slovenia, on the 19th of September, 1999.  Canon Marko Veršič, assisted by several priests, presided over the celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.  During his homily, he stated that we must make haste to respect human life, regardless of the price, which is self-denial, and even self-sacrifice.

On the next day, early in the morning, prior to the departure from Maribor, a well-known theologian, Father Stanislav Slatinek spoke about the importance of the peregrination in Asia and Europe for the victory of the civilization of life and love.  After the morning Mass, while saying good-bye to Our Blessed Mother, he also thanked the coordinators of the peregrination "From Ocean to Ocean."

Our Blessed Mother in the Czestochowa Icon stopped in a few of local areas on the way towards the Adriatic Sea.  Numerous people came with their priests, including the elderly from their nursing homes and even small preschool children, and sang together a well-known Marian song, "Mother Mary," greeting Our Lady with great enthusiasm.  Many were very grateful.  Bishop Stanislav Lipovšek invited Our Lady to visit his headquarters in the Diocese of Celje.  He emphasized the importance of the Act of Entrustment of the Civilization of Life and Love to Our Lady.

Our Lady arrived at the shore of the Adriatic Sea at 5:00 p.m. (17:00 hours).  Countless people were joyfully awaiting her in the Church of St. Mark in Portorož, where a prayer vigil took place throughout the night.  The coordinator of the peregrination in Slovenia, Valentina Pikelj, said, "We now see clearly, that generations of Slovenians have waited for this visit of their loving Mother, who is a great sign, testifying to God's Presence with us and letting us know that He is assisting us".