National Medjugorje Conference to Attract Thousands to Notre Dame and South Bend

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The South Bend/Mishawaka Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is pleased welcome the 22nd annual National Conference on Medjugorje, being held May 21-23 at the University of Notre Dame Joyce Center.

South Bend/Mishawaka Convention and Visitors Bureau

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The South Bend/Mishawaka Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB) is pleased welcome the 22nd annual National Conference on Medjugorje, being held May 21-23 at the University of Notre Dame Joyce Center.

Medjugorje, a small village in Bosnia, first drew worldwide attention when the Blessed Virgin Mary began appearing daily to six young people on June 24, 1981. The messages of Our Lady of Medjugorje regard the necessity of faith, prayer, conversion and fasting as preconditions for peace and salvation of the world. The ongoing apparitions are now in their 28th year, and Medjugorje has become one of the best-known and most visited places of pilgrimage in the Catholic world.

This year's National Medjugorje Conference will bring together an array of inspirational speakers who will give powerful testimonies of how their lives have been changed by the call of Our Lady at Medjugorje.

Approximately 1,200-1,400 attendees are expected to travel to South Bend from across the United States. "It is always a pleasure to welcome visitors to South Bend, especially those who have attended the National Conference on Medjugorje many times," said Carolyne Wallace, director of sales for the South Bend/Mishawaka Convention and Visitors Bureau." We appreciate the efforts and hard work Queen of Peace Ministries puts forth to present an inspirational and successful conference each year."

The conference begins on Friday evening, May 21, at 7:00 p.m. and ends at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday. On-site registration begins on Friday at 5:00 p.m. at Gate 8 of the Joyce Center. Housing for conference attendees is available in the dormitories at Notre Dame. For reservations call 574.631.6691. For conference information contact Queen of Peace Ministries at P.O. Box 761, Notre Dame, IN 46556, 574.288.8777 or log on to http://www.QueenofPeaceMinistries.com.

The South Bend/Mishawaka CVB is the destination marketing organization attracting business, meeting and leisure visitors, stimulating economic growth and enhancing the quality of life in St. Joseph County. Log on to http://www.exploresouthbend.org for community and visitor information.

Ivanka Elez was the first to see Our Lady on the side of Mt. Podbrdo when the events of Medjugorje started on June 24, 1981. Her words, “Look Mirjana, Gospa!”, have echoed throughout the world for the last 29 years. She has received all ten secrets revealed by Our Lady and no longer has a daily apparition, but she does see Our Lady once a year on June 25th. Her special mission is to pray for families. Ivanka and her husband, Rajko, have three children and live in Medjugorje.

Dana is one of Ireland's most successful entertainers and has received acclaim through best-selling Catholic recordings, top rated TV appearances, and conferences throughout the world. She joined young Catholics in singing when Pope John Paul II visited Denver for World Youth Day. Dana wrote the theme song “We Are One Body” for this event. She was the first woman to receive the prestigious San Benedetto award for her outstanding work in defending life and the family.

Traci Matheu was raised with a solid foundation in the Catholic faith but later, all but turned her back on it. A trip to Medjugorje with her family played a key part in reclaiming her faith. Traci has dedicated her life now to serving the Church and the call of Our Lady. She is a popular and inspiring speaker and author of a new book titled A Survivor of the Lost Generation of Catholics. She is a stay-at-home mom and lives with her husband and three children in the Chicago area.

Richard Bingold is a Catholic lay evangelist whose story of conversion has touched the hearts of thousands of people around the world. He is the founder of the Miraculous Pilgrim Rosary Healing Ministry and the author of the book Gift Giver. Richard has been to Medjugorje 79 times and travels far and wide to help spread the messages of Our Lady.

Dan Davis is a seminarian in the Diocese of Ft. Wayne-South Bend. For the last few years, he has been attending the National Medjugorje Conference with his entire family. Dan's pilgrimage to Medjugorje last August confirmed him in his call to the priesthood and helped him prepare for life in the seminary. Our Lady's call from Medjugorje continues to be a major influence in his life.

Father Mark Gurtner went to Medjugorje as a teenager and felt a call to the priesthood while he was a student at Indiana University. He is a gifted teacher and preacher with the ability to make clear, concise points that instruct and inspire. He received a canon lay degree from Catholic University. He is head of the Diocesan Marriage tribunal and is the pastor of St. Anthony de Padua Parish in South Bend.

Milona von Hapsburg, arch duchess in Austria's former ruling family, abandoned a job in a fashionable Geneva auction house to do volunteer work in Medjugorje. She made a three day pilgrimage to Medjugorje and stayed 10 years, spending much of that time serving as an interpreter for Father Slavko and the visionaries.

Father David Simonetti was ordained to the priesthood in 2005 by Cardinal George. He has been to Medjugorje three times. He is the spiritual director of the Pope John Paul Eucharistic Adoration Association in Chicago and is a regular contributor on EWTN and Relevant Radio. He is the Pastor of St. James Church in Sauk Village, Illinois.

For more information, contact:
Erin Heldstab
Mgr., Communication & Events
Phone 574.234.0051 x274

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