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Following the Cross Procession: Meet the Crossbearers - Joško Krstinić from Vrboska

By Ivana 19 March 2016
We continue the series of interviews done by Vilma Stojković from Hvar / Unesco website with the crossbearers. Vrboska is next.
Joško Krstinić - Crossbearer for Vrboska in 2016.
(photo: Vilma Stojković)
Joško (35) signed up for carrying the Cross 21 year ago, in 1995. His life was marked by this decision as he served at the altar at his parish church for more than 10 years and since 2013, when the Brotherhood of the Miraculous Cross re-established, he is a proud member this organisation. His father′s uncle was a crossbearer in 1933 and his uncle in 1970 for Vrboska.
(photo: personal archive of Joško Krstinić)
Worshipping of the Saint Cross in Vrboska is extremely important, because in 1614, bloody tears appeared on the Cross as a result of the discord and intolerance of two groups of brotherhoods (a dispute over an independence issue from Vrbanj parish). The tears of the Cross were recognized as a God′s call to reconciliation and to feuding of both groups.
(photo: personal archive of Joško Krstinić)
After overcoming a serious illness, he vowed to carry the cross in socks, which is not a custom at this parish, nor it is required by the statute of the brotherhood. He will pray for the health of his family and for other people from Vrboska and for all his late relatives during the procession. In Vrboska, it is customary for the crossbearer to visit the family grave in the morning after the procession and to pray Our Father and Hail Mary for 5 times each.
(photo: personal archive of Joško Krstinić)
He is grateful to all his friends, who will walk with him through the night and at each stage sing The Our Lady´s Tears. His cousin Don Ivan Jurin will join him in the procession.
His wife Ana is his biggest support, both in preparation and in the spiritual sense. "It will be her to carry out the Cross, without her help, it would be very difficult", said Joško. For the crossbearer, this is a sort of family gathering, cousins from Bolivia, uncle from France, other relatives from Split, Brač and Kutina are coming for the event. The route will be slightly altered to bless the house of the crossbearer.
(photo: Vilma Stojković)

When asked, if he is ready, and if he receives advice from those, who already passed this way, words that were addressed to him resonate so strongly with me: " Do not worry Joško, it may be difficult for you to carry God in the beginning, but as time will go by, you will see, He will carry you."

Joško believes in it, he wakes up and goes to bed praying. Great days are in front of him, and he is deeply aware of them. He will receive the Cross from the last year′s crossbearer on the church ceremony on Friday before the Palm Sunday. We will part from dear Joško with a song-anthem to be sung in the procession and composed by Father Louis Matković from Vrboska hundred years ago: "Zdravo Križu, zdravo drvo, o kom visi jedan Bog, oko tebe kupimo se, kao oko stijega svog!" (Hail Cross, hail wood, from which one God hangs, we gather around you, like a around our own flag!"


Continue reading about the crossbearer from Pitve.


Read here about the crossbearer from Jelsa.