That is a place where cohesion, community and self-giving rule. Incredible friendship and love come through and from all of that, so strongly that you can feel it. Now when I stop and take a look, it is so real, that love, that you can almost feel it with your hands. Truly where is love, friendship, there is God!
On Modrave I slept on a hard surface, we ate modestly, we worked, there was just enough water, we washed our dishes with soil and in the sea, wasps leapt into our jam... Despite all of this, I would never trade this experience for any other summer vacation. Not for a trip to Berlin, London, Paris, New York or anything. Someone who has never been there will say that I am crazy for sure, but everyone who has been on Modrave knows what I’m talking about. They know what it is over there that makes it such a beautiful experience.
In the weeks preceding Modrave I was scared to go there. I was scared because I didn’t know where I was going, what kind of people will be there and will they accept me. On the other hand I was joyful, because I felt that this was exactly what I needed to fill some voids I felt inside of me. Thank God, that joy and curiosity prevailed.
As soon as I put my foot down from the bus in Drage, all of the fear was gone. I met wonderful people and somehow, every day through song, work, swimming, joking, praying and the Holly Masses, I got to love them more and more. But there weren’t only jocks and prayers. We shared each other’s suffering and pain, we comforted and advised one another. We slowly became one big family. I’d take you all home with me, but since I can’t I’ll take you in my heart, which has grown infinitely this week.
In the end, I would like to thank first of all God for crossing our paths. I would like to thank the founders of the camp, without whom this wouldn’t exist. I would like to thank the priests for the beautiful Holly Masses, prayers and spiritual advice. I would like to thank Vjera and all the animators for a superbly organized time and great effort which they had to invest into all of this. Of course I can’t forget the cooks who have fed us throughout the week. I thank the Mešin family for taking care of the camp throughout the summer. At the end I would like to thank all of the participants for making this camp the most beautiful experience in my life. Thank you!!!
Several beautiful days (a week) are behind me on Modrave (4th – 11th August). What made them beautiful are a number of factors: the ambient which, especially in the early morning and late afternoon "speaks” in a special way; enough time to notice details; wonderful young people whose "beauty” you become especially aware of in these kinds of circumstances; deep confessions or sincere conversations; immense youthful creativity in its original form without the interference of technology; involved animators – fragile in their humanity, but strong in their commitment to be in the service of others; my colleague priest with whom I have spent extraordinary co-working moments; the opportunity to give from yourself what God has given you; morning rosaries and breviaries with your seminarist colleague or some of the youth who would join; a handful of seminarists who happened to be in the group – so adapted, and yet so themselves; spontaneous, beautifully sung Holly Masses; the day-long adoration and the testifying praying stance before the Blessed Sacrament of a part of the youth ... Usually we, the older ones, the priests think that we are called to give spiritual exercises to others: be it the youth or adults, but to me Modrave are spiritual exercises with the youth, with emphasis on "exercises”. I would like to thank every participant for this beautiful experience with great agony and sadness that my young parishioners, because of such an unlucky touristic (materialistic) mentality cannot experience such a redeeming and inspiring experience.
Father Mili Plenković