Anyone who has read extensively about it knows that Our Blessed Lady would not appear "on tap" over 40,000 times just for a bunch of money-making publicity seeking puppet-style "apparition" operators. Furthermore, she would not pray The Our Father as that would be ridiculous and she would never say that all religions are equal in the sight of Almighty God because they are not. The fact that there are priests who have willfully disobeyed their calling (and one in particular has impregnated a nun and still practises his priesthood although he has been suspended) illustrates its diabolical nature. The fact that they encourage pilgrimages which are officially forbidden by The Vatican and the fact that priests have written books about it defending it, demonstrate irreparable division that can only be from the Devil. This is all about making money on a vast scale; disobedience to properly constituted authority on the matter (two successive bishops of Mostar) and luxurious lifestyles of the fake "seers". Read Michael Davis' book on it and compare The Catholic Church's criterion for private revelations and it is quite clear that Medjugorje is a fraud. The sooner this scam is exposed publicly for what it is, the better for the Church. Medjugorje has generated many myths - Pope John Paul II (RIP) never visited the place but steered diplomatically past it when he was in the region on a papal tour of his. And he never approved of it the glowing terms fondly but mistakenly claimed by the Medjugorje sycophants. Many of these notions are pure fantasy. This is a story that has already generated far too many fables. The Church has made it quite clear that we do not need to believe in private revelations for salvation. On this basis alone Medjugorje is superfluous. However, we already have apparitions of Our Blessed Lady approved by The Church for worthiness of belief at La Salette, Lourdes, Fatima and Akita. These have absolutely nothing to do in any way at all with the Medjugorje manipulations. In fact, the Akita messages warn of internal divisions among the church hierarchy of a grave nature which in fact we do witness today; she warns of the evidence we compromise the faith too much and fall into idolatry and the warnings of terrible punishments for our sins as a consequence. Indeed, this is in the same vein as Fatima and La Salette already approved. And to those whose lives have allegedly been changed visiting Medjugorje - my life was changed when I visited the Victoria Falls many years ago when I could not comprehend how wonderful Our Creator and God was in the physical world around us but Our Blessed Lady has not appeared there as far as I know. Also, my visits to the approved lieus Fatima, Walsingham and Lourdes have also changed my life & the lives of many others without disobeying The Vatican in so doing. Frankly speaking, there are many legitimate lieus that may have beneficial influences on our lives. However, this does not necessarily mean that they are places of such supernatural significance as Lourdes or Fatima. Much of the talk is pure emotionalism characteristic of our experiential and oversensitive era. Remember the Devil can simulate what he likes such as watches revolving backwards or even appear momentarily like Our Blessed Mother but with significant differences. When we are overemotional we can imagine almost what we please. In this case, some people are being extremely over-imaginative in an entirely dishonest manner. Almighty God does not repeat the same message 40,000 times, if you read The Bible. He says it once and if people do not listen then He gets on with His intentions. Also, God does not tell us that all religions are equal, otherwise He would not have destroyed the Temple twice due to idolatry of The Chosen People and He established One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism and One Way and One Truth and One Life, all through Jesus and His only established church on Earth. The others are all false and this has been taught as such until the last 40 years in spite of the Vatican pastoral Councils. We are talking about faith here not an over-vivid imagination. –HMacK
HMacK, the Church continues to teach that all other religions are false insofar as they depart from the truths revealed by Christ through His Church. Vatican II said nothing to contradict this. Do not be misled by those who claim that Vatican II said or authorised many things which it plainly did not. Tell them to read its documents. Most people who claim this have not done so, except for a couple of fragments which they continually and misleadingly quote out of context. -Ronk
I don't believe a word of Medjugorje. The messages of Our Lady at Fatima and Lourdes are diametrically opposed to the convenient new theology 'our lady' is making at Medjugorje. Religious indifferentism is on offer, along with finicky types of fasting requests and too many hoops to jump to be a Medjugorjian. It just doesn't ring true.
Fr Peter Joseph, Chancellor of the Maronite Diocese of Australia - doctorate in dogmatic theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University, Rome, had this to say about situations such as can be applied to Medjugorje:
"It is forbidden, as well as sinful, to propagate private revelations which have received a negative judgement from the local Bishop, the conference of Bishops, or the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith".
"Everyone is free to have an opinion, but all have to submit to the judgement of the Church with practical obedience. What I mean is: you are still free to disagree (the Bishop is not infallible in this matter), but you owe him practical obedience, that is, you may not act against the decree; you may not propagate a revelation that the Bishop has judged negatively, or continue to say publicly that you regard it as genuine. Remember, a Church commission may give a negative verdict for reasons which it cannot state publicly, e.g., it may have found out things against the character of the seer, but will not say so publicly, even though this would justify the decision and help people to accept it.
If a so-called message is judged not authentic for doctrinal reasons, then you are not free to defend such messages, because then you will be defending error". -Michael Webb
My opinion after reading and studying the Medjugorje apparitions and its messages is that it is a hoax. And in the words of Father Malachi Martin, "it was satanic from the beginning". I believe its purpose goes beyond a money-making scheme. I believe Satan has plans to use this apparition to lead its believers to following something very dangerous as the coming New World Order and the One World Religion. Be careful!!! -Susan Calheno
The local Bishop always makes the final decision re a reported apparition. He enjoys this privilege by canonical right in the Church. The Holy See has acknowledged this fact in the cases of Garabandal, Bayside and Medjugorje all of which have been officially condemned by the bishops in the dioceses where these apparitions were reported. It is too bad that so many people have chosen to continue following these "apparitions" and their messages in a radical state of disobedience. Btw, acts of disobedience against a local Ordinary's decision on these types of matters is usually a sure sign that an apparition is false!
We all need to pray to the Holy Spirit for the gift of discernment when it comes to reported apparitions. Following our emotions or the trends and the sensationalism spread by special-interest groups goes far beyond what the Church teaches.
You're doing a great job explaining Catholic teaching HMacK!
One of the visionaries came to a local parish Church and the church bulletin read this way:
"Mass at 5:00 P.M. followed by apparition of Our Lady to Ivan at 6:30 sharp."
What an insult to the Mother of God! Apparitions on demand with no regard for Church teaching.
"All religions are equal before God." "The Gospa" almost dropping the child Jesus, the disobedience of the Franciscans to the Bishop after the Bishop had discussed removing the Franciscans with the approval of the Franciscan Superior General in Rome, and the apparition takes the side of the priests encouraging disobedience! The early lies of the children etc... 40,000 apparitions and counting. My Lord, it's religious emotionalism.
Let's hypothetically state that the CDF comes out and gives a negative ruling to the apparitions. Many people who have made this their entire faith will lose the faith. Many will continue believing despite what the Vatican says, thereby making themselves their own Magisterium. Let's listen to the Church. Christ left behind an authoritative, teaching Church guided by the Holy Spirit to guide us. Let's trust that.
Don't overlook the fact that this last commission was going to decide negatively until taken away by the Vatican. That's not a case of approbation of the apparitions by the Vatican. That means that this phenomena has grown so wide spread that the Vatican needs to make this ruling so that the matter will end.
Also, mention has been made on here that the Church will not rule on the apparitions till they are over. Isn't it interesting they never end! Does that mean the Church can't make a ruling? Of course not.
In Bayside, New York we had so called apparitions. Guess what was happening? Thousands coming every week to hear the latest message. People turning to the Church; saying rosaries, distributing scapulars; phenomena in the sky as at Medjugorje. Many people asked, "How can this be false? People are coming back to God, going back to Mass, praying more. It can't be false or demonic."
Guess what. While the apparitions were still going on the local Bishop condemned the apparitions as false. Why? False messages, religious subjectivism, disregard for Church authority.'
What does all this do? Detract our attention from the true messages of Our Lady, especially those of Fatima! Fatima, where every pronouncement of Our Lady was fulfilled, whereas none have been fulfilled at Medjugorje. Each child given ten secrets at Medjugorje? Seventy secrets?
And what to say of so many people who came away from Medjugorje and claimed they were having apparitions? If we listen to the Church the devil cannot trick us.
If the Church condemns Medjugorje, which I believe its the only thing they can do considering the facts, then I pray for all those who have invested their lives and money in the so-called apparitions to move forward and help promote the Truth of Faith and apparitions approved of by the Church and pray the fall away may not be too many, because the devil is willing to lose a lot in order to gain a few. I pray people will stick with the Church.
Books to help with regards to Apparitions:
-"Mystical Phenomena" by Msgr. Albert Farges
-"Graces of Interior Prayer" by Fr. Poulain
-The works of St. John of the Cross. –Joseph
Medjugorje cannot be authentic when "Our Lady" condoned a censured priest's status when he defied his Bishop. Meaning that the apparition opposes a legitimate moral ruling by the Church's representative in Mostar. Lourdes and Fatima messages were always entirely subject to church rulings and approval.
Also the 'messages" are so bland, negative and repetitive. One in particular contained a highly dubious statement that all religions are equal. 'By their fruits you will know them'. -TH Olsen
I believe Medjugorje to be a hoax. The Blessed Virgin Mary would not keep reappearing when those appearances are causing so much disruption and lack of peace within her Son's, our Lords Church here on earth. Nor would she use Franciscans who had been kicked out of their religious order and who had their faculties to say Mass and hear Confessions removed. Nor would she want those she chose to act in disobedience to the magisterium of her Son's Church. Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in Heaven and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in Heaven. Whatever the magisterium decides we should follow. The Bishop has the authority to make decisions for his diocese which he did and the Visionaries and ex-Franciscans chose to disobey him publicly. That in itself is a scandal in the Church. I am sure the Holy Mother doesn't condone scandal in the Church. Many may feel that they have been brought to the Church and they may be attending Catholic Masses but do they really believe what they say they do in the Creed during every Mass? Do they really believe in the Catholic Faith and all that the Catholic Church teaches? Or is the devil doing his work to destroy the church through them? Are they doing Jesus' work or the devil's work? –Bev
Having spent thirteen months in Bosnia during the war I experienced first hand the duplicity of some elements of the Croatian Catholic community and particularly the underhand and sometimes criminal influence of Franciscan priests in Jace as well as Medjugorje. This whole affair makes a ridicule of our Church in the eyes of many. It is a falsehood and a dangerous one at that. -Eoin O'Eihim
Another exorcist, Father Gabrielle Amorth personally believes the Medjugorje apparitions to be authentic - 'a continuation of Fatima'. -Skye
Let the Holy Spirit of Light convict these false seers. The interview with Father Gabrielle Amorth is doctored: it is a false fabrication from the "demonically infested" proponents of the seers and all held in the spell of the devil who are leading so many astray. The Queen of Peace has always been from the beginning of Christianity and is not new. What is new is this diabolical infestation on the truth to make it seem as new, in the clouds has always been a deception like the cigarettes these seers where smoking when these feelings were invented. How are these seers leading the flock astray? Look at the fruit of their lives: nothing about Marian humility but always about false pride, hatred (for those who judge there actions), lies, and sinful living in their own spiritual directors. That is not from the Queen of Peace, the mother of the Prince of Peace but from the Prince of Lies, Sin, and Pride: the Devil. Keep your eyes on Christ and His appointed good and true shepherd, our Holy Father the Pope, the Magisterium, the local appointed Bishops and Archbishops and not on any other including Cardinal Bertone. Pax Domini. -J Velazquez
Sun spinning, rosary chains changing color, feelings of great devotion, etc: none of these is evidence of authenticity of apparitions. Both the present and former bishop of Mostar denounced the 'visions'. They alone have the sensus fidei, the God-given authority and the knowledge to pronounce on mystical phenomena in their own diocese.
We can never go wrong by obeying the bishop on these things. We can go horribly wrong by thinking we know better than he about 'visions'. The Medjugorje phenomenon demonstrates the miserable state of ignorance among Catholics about Catholic teaching and even worse - disobedience to its lawful authorities.
The Bishop of Mostar ordered the 'seers' to stop claiming they were seeing Our Lady - and they refused: this is an infallible sign of false apparitions. I have noticed that Medjugorje heads relentlessly promote the apparitions which seem to form the basis of their faith, but mystical phenomena, real or imagined, is not part of the deposit of faith. HMack, you are doing a sterling job. Will you be my friend? The number of Catholics I know who don't believe in Medjugorje is frighteningly small. -Maryse Usher
There is something not right about these so called apparitions. When Mary appeared at Lourdes Knock and Fatima she was sent by God with a message regarding his love for us and repentance. Never did our Lady contradict church teaching as seems to be happening at Medjugorje. -Martin Gallagher
God Bless Bishops with Courage
Rwanda, Julia Kim, Father Fernando Suarez, Christina Gallagher, Medjugorje
Of course, the greatest courage I can think of is a bishop who for many years has gone against the majority of Catholics throughout the world to speak the truth of things going on in his diocese. Bishop Peric’s courage reminds me of the Saints who fought the Arians.
Medjugorje is a parish in the diocese of Mostar-Duvno in Bosnia-Herzegovina, with a population of about 4,000 persons, which has been entrusted to the pastoral care of the Franciscan fathers OFM. From 24 June 1981 onwards, some events have been occurring which many people, some Franciscans included, have attributed to so-called apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary, who has seemingly presented herself as the "Queen of Peace".
I. How many so-called visionaries and visions are there?
1.Vicka Ivanković, born on 3 September 1964, in the parish of Medjugorje, has been receiving "apparitions" from 24 June 1981. Every day. There have been pauses, but there have also been days with up to ten "visions". Vicka married Mario Mijatović in 2002 and now has one child and lives in the neighbouring parish of Gradina.
How many "visions" has she had till now? - According to a simple calculation of the days, it would be 8,270 including yesterday's. These "apparitions" were with the other "seers" during the first years, yet for many years now she has been having them alone, separately, in the evening, regardless of her location. As if they were programmed.
2. MarijaPavlović, born on 1 April 1965 in the parish of Medjugorje, has been a "seer" from the second day of the "apparitions", 25 June 1981, every day up till now. In 1993 she married an Italian, Paolo Lunetti. She has three children and is now living in Monza, near Milano, Italy.
How many "visions" has she had till now? Around 8,270 including yesterday's, together with the other "privileged" few or separately. The "apparitions" are not tied so much to the locality of Medjugorje as to persons: wherever these persons travel in the world, the "apparitions" travel with them.
3. Ivan Dragićević, born in Mostar on 25 May 1965, has had daily "apparitions" from 24 June 1981 to this day. He married the former Miss Massachusetts, Loreen Murphy in 1994 and has four children. He lives with his family part of the time in Boston and the rest of the time in Medjugorje.
How many "visions" has Ivan had till now? About 8,270 with last night's, together with the other "seers" or separately.
4. Mirjana Dragićević, born in Sarajevo on 18 March 1965, has had "visions" from 24 June 1981. Her last regular encounter was on Christmas day 1982. From that day onward, she has received an "apparition" once a year - on her birthday - 18 March. Along with this, from 2 August 1987, on each 2nd day of the month, she hears the Madonna's voice and sometimes sees her. That would make it 17 years times 12 months, she either hears or sees the Madonna. Mirjana married Marko Soldo in 1989 and has two children. She is now living in Medjugorje.
How many "visions" has Mirjana had till now? All totaled: about 770.
5. IvankaIvanković was born in the parish of Medjugorje on 21 June 1966. The phenomenon appeared to her from 25 June 1981 to 7 May 1985. She now has a "vision" once a year, on 25 June 1981, on the anniversary of the "apparitions". She married Rajko Elez and has three children. She is currently living in Medjugorje.
How many "visions" has Ivanka had till now? About 1,450 all together.
6. JakovČolo was born on 6 March 1971 in the parish of Medjugorje. From 25 June 1981 he received daily "apparitions" till 12 September 1998. From this date onward, he has only had one a year - on Christmas day. In 1993, he married Anna-Lisa Barozzi from Italy. They have three children and now live in Medjugorje.
How many "visions" has he had till now? Together with the others and separately, around 6,290.
The Madonna has been presumably "appearing" on a regular basis and at one and the same time, even if one of the "seers" is in America, another "visionary" in Herzegovina, a third in Italy or a fourth in Maynooth. Adding all this up together makes for 33,320 "apparitions" up till now. Please don't ask me about the accuracy of these statistics, because a thousand "apparitions" more or less, have no role to play here! The hierarchical Church at various levels, diocesan, national and Holy See, hasn't accepted a single apparition as authentic.
Let us now compare Medjugorje to two recognized Marian shrines: At Lourdes in 1858, the Madonna appeared as the "Immaculate Conception", 18 times to Bernadette. The Church accepted these apparitions and four years afterwards declared them authentic, in 1862. At Fatima in 1917, the Madonna appeared as "Our Lady of the Rosary" 6 times to the ten year old shepherd children Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta. 13 years later, in 1930, the Church accepted these apparitions as authentic. Three of the Medjugorje "seers", who say they have daily "apparitions", live most of the time outside of Medjugorje, while the remaining three that live in Medjugorje supposedly have only one "apparition" a year.
II. HOW MANY SECRETS HAS THE ALLEGED MADONNA GIVEN TO THE SO-CALLED SEERS?
Those who have daily "visions" have received nine secrets, while those who have "apparitions" once a year, have ten secrets. It is not clear if nine or ten secrets have been given and are known to each of the "seers", or if each of the "seers" has his/her own number of secrets which differ from the rest. If we compare this to the authentic apparitions, then one can see that at Lourdes there were no secrets for the world, while at Fatima one secret was divided into three parts. Yet at Medjugorje till now there have been 9 or 10, or even 57 possible secrets, which have been divided by three "seers" who have received 10 and another three who have received 9. To this day not a single secret has been revealed.
In the first years there was apocalyptic talk about a "great sign" to happen, yet to this day this "great sign" has not occurred, and the expectation of a sign has diminished.
III. HOW MANY PRESUMED MESSAGES HAVE THERE BEEN?
All the "messages" of Medjugorje can be summed up into five basic ones, as is usually the case, yet these "five" are actually the following "fourteen": peace, conversion, prayer, fasting, vigilance, penance, adoration, witnessing, faith, call to holiness, Eucharist, Word of God, monthly confession, rosary… Many authors greatly differ which five should be taken from these fourteen. Italian, French and Croat authors… all have their own interpretations. It's important to mention here that besides the daily "messages", there are also special monthly "messages" on the 25th of each month, which are given to Marija in Italy, which she then sends to the parish rectory of Medjugorje for verification and are then sent out into the world.
All these "messages" of the various interpreters of Medjugorje, are heard every Sunday in churches. For us, the novelty of Medjugorje would be that the "Queen of Peace" on the 25th of each month sends out a special communication with the message: "Thank you children, for responding to my invitation". The Madonna thanks the "seers" for having the time, for wanting to, and deigning themselves to meet and talk with her. According to these words the "Madonna" is amazed and grateful to the "seers" who have responded to her invitation! This is somewhat like parents thanking their children for being born, or physicians thanking the infirm for seeking their health back! (OgledaloPravde= Mirror of Justice, Mostar, 2001, pp. 249-250)