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Posted - Mar 24 2008 :  6:15:51 PM  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
I heard the Church has condemned Medjugorje. Is this true?

A big NO!!! This is one of the most frequent questions/accusations I receive. It is simply not true. The Holy See has affirmed its position a number of times over the years. I think it is best if I start from the beginning and briefly give you a rundown of the facts.

Let me first say that the Holy See, former Pope John Paul II, and Pope Benedict XVI have kept, and are keeping, a close watch on the messages of Medjugorje over the last 25 years. They have not found anything that contradicts scripture or the Church. If they had, Medjugorje would have been condemned years ago. Our Lady's message in Medjugorje calls us to: Daily prayer of the rosary, monthly Confession, daily reading of Scripture, fasting on Wednedays and Fridays on bread and water, and attending Holy Mass as often as possible. This is a simple message meant to help us in the lifelong process of conversion.

Bishop Pavao Žanic originally visited Medjugorje five times in the first two months of the apparitions in 1981 and performed a thorough investigation. Afterwards he came only to confer the sacrament of Confirmations to the faithful. In front of over 3000 people at Holy Mass, he declared:

"I am deeply convinced that no child who says that they have seen Our Lady, has been talked into doing so. If we were speaking about one child only, one might say he could be stubborn and that not even the police could make the child renounce what he said. But six innocent, simple children in the space of half an hour, would, if they were pushed, admit all. None of the priests, I guarantee, had any idea of putting the children up to something.... I am also convinced that the children are not lying. The children are only speaking out what's in their hearts... It is certain: the children are not lying". (From a sermon given on the feast of St. James, the patron saint of Medjugorje, on the 25th of July 1981)

In "Glas Koncila", the Croatian national catholic newspaper, 16th of August 1981, he stated; "It is definite that the children were not incited by anyone, and especially not by the church, to lie."

It is unclear why in the months to follow that Bishop Zanic changed his mind. Some say it was due to threats and pressure by the Communist government of imprisonment of both Fr. Jozo and the Bishop if the apparitions did not cease. We all know that Fr. Jozo served 18 months of harsh inprisonment for refusing to denounce Medjugorje. Others say that a reported comment from Our Lady regarding a wrong judgement the Bishop had made with a Franciscan priest infuriated the Bishop. But regardless the ultimate outcome was that the Bishop turned against Medjugorje.

Then in 1984, a commission of 14 people was formed by Bishop Zanic that consisted mainly of members that had already declared themselves to be against the alleged events. They made two statements which basicly said that they agreed with the Holy See that a decision should not be rushed. Then in 1987 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger entrusted the investigation into the hands of the Yugoslavian bishops' conference. After three years of study the former Bishops' Conference of Yugoslavia on April 10, 1991 published their declaration in which among other things it states:

"On the basis of investigations up till now it cannot be established that one is dealing with supernatural apparitions and revelations."

This statement does not mean that it has been proven that no supernatural basis exists, but only that it is not yet established or proven. This means the matter is open to further investigation. This finding was really a compromise between the position of Bishop Zanic and the good fruits, which the events of Medjugorje were producing. The commission for pastoral life in the parish of Medjugorje decided to meet again on June 27, 1991. However, one day before, Serbia attacked Slovenia and the war broke out that put the last nails in the corpse that was called Yugoslavia. With the dissolution of the state of Yugoslavia, the Bishops Conference of Yugoslavia was also dissolved.

After the commission findings were made public in 1991, Pope John Paul II retired Bishop Zanic of his duties and handed over the responsibility to investigate and render a final decision on Medjugorje to a hand picked commission of Bishops. It is the current belief that this commission will not issue a final decision or continue its investigation until the apparitions have ceased. But of great importance is the last statement that they rendered in 1993 which states:

"We bishops, after a three-year-long commission study accept Medjugorje as a holy place, as a shrine. This means that we have nothing against it if someone venerates the Mother of God in a manner also in agreement with the teaching and belief of the Church. . . Therefore, we are leaving that to further study. The Church does not hurry." (Glas Koncila, August 15, 1993).

The replacement for Bishop Zanic was Bishop Ratko Peric. Bishop Ratko worked closely with Bishop Zanic for years, and it was no surprise that he held, and still holds the same negative opinion of Medjugorje. Bishop Ratko is reported to have never investigated Medjugorje, never spoken with or interviewed the visionaries, and visits Medjugorje only rarely for Confirmations and official functions. The important issue is that Bishop Ratko Peric does not have authority over the final decision on Medjugorje. This responsibility still rests with the commission of Bishops. The local Bishop's negative comments about Medjugorje were addressed directly in 1998 by the Holy See in a letter to his Excellency Mons. Gilbert Aubry, Bishop of Saint-Denis de la Reunion. The letter states that Bishop Peric's position on Medjugorje is his personal opinion, which he is entitled to as local Bishop, but remains his personal opinion. The URL for this letter is Newletter.htm

Lastly is Pope John Paul II himself. Our beloved former Pope was very much a supporter of Medjugorje (although unofficially, which he had to be until Medjugorje was approved). Please take a look at our document Pope John Paul II's Comments, which list numerous quotes as reported by priests, bishops and cardinals over the years. Most recently, in August 2002, Pope John Paul II wrote a personal note to Fr. Jozo Zovko thanking him for his ministry, and giving him his blessing. Fr. Jozo Letter. Pope Benedict has not made any verified statements that we are aware of regarding Medjugorje.

The Holy See has also stated and confirmed on numerous occasions over the years that traveling to Medjugorje is permitted. The only restriction is a pilgrimage can not be organized by the Church (which would indicate authentication by the Church). It is perfectly ok for priests, bishops, and cardinals to travel to Medjugorje alone or with groups. And to date almost 500,000 priests, bishops, and cardinals have visited Medjugorje.

Please also refer to our page "All About Medjugorje" for a tremendous amount of information and documents specifically about "Medjugorje and the Church".


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I heard the local bishop is against Medjugorje.

True! It is important to first state that the priests serving in Medjugorje are appointed by the bishop and that they are all under obedience. With that said, the replacement for Bishop Zanic, who was in power at the time the apparitions began, was Bishop Ratko Peric. Bishop Ratko worked closely with Bishop Zanic for years, and it was no surprise that he held, and still holds, the same negative opinion of Medjugorje. In a conversation that Fr. John Chisholm had with Bishop Ratko Peric, Fr. John asked the bishop if he believed in Lourdes. The bishop slammed his fist on the table and yelled "NO". Fr. John asked the bishop if he believed in Fatima, and received the same answer. With this information, it would seem unlikely that the bishop would believe in Our Lady's apparitions in his own diocese. The Bishop is reported to have never investigated Medjugorje, never spoken with or interviewed the visionaries, and visits Medjugorje only rarely for Confirmations and official functions. But with this said, the important issue is that Bishop Ratko Peric does not have authority over the Churchs decision on Medjugorje. In a recent interview the bishop acknowledged this fact when he said: "while recognizing the Holy Father's right to give a final decision" on the validity of the reported apparitions... This responsibility still rests with the commission of Bishops. The local Bishop's negative comments about Medjugorje were addressed directly in 1998 by the Holy See in a letter to his Excellency Mons. Gilbert Aubry, Bishop of Saint-Denis de la Reunion. The letter states that Bishop Peric's position on Medjugorje is his personal opinion, which he is entitled to as local Bishop, but remains his personal opinion. The URL for this letter is Newletter.htm


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I heard the Pope is against Medjugorje.

False! Pope John Paul II was very much a supporter of Medjugorje (although unofficially, which he had to be because Medjugorje was not yet approved). Please take a look at our document Pope John Paul II's Comments, which list numerous quotes as reported by priests, bishops and cardinals over the years. Most recently, in August 2002, Pope John Paul II wrote a personal note to Fr. Jozo Zovko thanking him for his ministry, and giving him his blessing. Fr. Jozo Letter. Pope Benedict has not made any verified statements that we are aware of regarding Medjugorje.




Grace Mizzi
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Send Oh Lord Holy Apostles into your church“Christ has no body but yours, no hands butyours, no feet but yours.Yours are the eyes through which Christ’scompassion must look upon the world.Yours are the feet with which He is to go about
doing good.Yours are the hands with which He is to bless us now.”St. Theresa of Avila

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JohnF
Mary's Servant



USA
428 Posts

Posted - Mar 26 2008 :  01:30:53 AM  Show Profile Send JohnF a Private Message
In 1995, Pope Benedict (Cardinal Ratzinger) wrote: “For places of apparitions which are still being investigated, official pilgrimages are forbidden.”

A year later, everything seemed to change. His Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith wrote: “… On the basis of investigation up till now it cannot be established that one is dealing with supernatural apparitions and revelations. However, the numerous gatherings of the faithful from different parts of the world, who are coming to Medjugorje prompted both by motives of belief and certain other motives, require the attention and pastoral care in the first place of the bishop of the diocese and of the other bishops with him so that in Medjugorje and everything related to it a healthy devotion toward the Blessed Virgin Mary would be promoted in conformity with the teaching of the Church.”

Almost ten years later, we read:

Dr. Tomislav Ivancic (professor at the Catholic Faculty of Theology in Zagreb, who knows the cardinal Ratzinger personally, whom he has often met in the Vatican theological commission), commenting these days the election of the new Pope Benedict XVI, said that it should not be neglected that the new Pope knows how to take a right position concerning Medjugorje. Dr. Fr. Tomislav Pervan who has translated Cardinal Ratzinger's books and exchanged letters with him has confirmed it. Finally, Medjugorje cannot be either proven or denied by articles and discussions.

Jesus said: "You will know them according to their works," and these works of the grace of God and of Our Lady's guidance in people's conversion, are evident from day to day.

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John

We must not doubt for even a moment,
But have trust in the power of God's mercy.
-Saint Faustina

Edited by - JohnF on Mar 27 2008 01:26:20 AM
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BARBAQUED
Mary's Servant



USA
454 Posts

Posted - Nov 06 2008 :  1:41:06 PM  Show Profile Send BARBAQUED a Private Message
Hi:
Well I’m going to tell you from personal experience. It is far better to pray for your enemies than to curse them. “I will bless those who bless you; I will curse those who curse you!”
Neither you nor I have the power to Change Obama’s mind or any other pro-choice supporters mind. Believe me I have tried and it just doesn’t work. As you can see right here on this web site many people are confused about the priority of life, even though it is a top ten commandment from God himself. (An interesting side note: the word of God (Jesus, is actually the Torah or Ten Commandments). The only mention of quality of life, in the top ten is we are told not to covet.
Now that we have exhausted all of the avenues in our power we need to turn to God, Jesus, The Holy Spirit, Mary and the Saints. Mary has been appearing monthly in Medjugorje. Her main themes of discussion have been the family structure, and life. She has told us a chastisement is coming, and to pray. Prayer is our recourse; obedience to authority is our command from Jesus. I’m not implying we should support behavior which is contrary to God’s word, Jesus. But I am saying Jesus told us to pray for our enemies, pray for their repentance and conversion.
Think of it like this; there is a spiritual battle going on right now. At this very moment satan is very bold in his actions. He has surrounded Barak Obama with fallen angels. These fallen angels are very, very smart. They are directed by the prince of lies and he has caused confusion among Christians.
Every day we are assaulted with half truths, lies, deception. Bit by bit we are told homosexuality is just another choice, it’s ok to use Gods name as a common curse on TV, and promiscuity is fine, abortion an easy end to un-wanted cell lumps.
In California, the Gay community was completely confident of their victory. School teachers supporting Gay rights were actually taking middle school children to court, to participate in and observe Gay weddings. Parents were outraged and they voted to amend the California constitution, the marriage protection act passed.
Actors are spending millions of dollars in support of animal rights, exalting the idea human life is anything but divine. We have been battling these issues since???? Just read St. Paul’s letter to the Romans chapter one. Surprised?
When will we choose God? When will we say yes to Mary and do as we are instructed, which is to pray. When we pray we send angels to Barak Obama, to do battle with the fallen angels sent by satan. God’s angels are supreme, we will win the battle. Our part in the battle is to have faith (expectant faith) and to pray support for our leaders. Stop grumbling and pray.
Psalm 1:
Why do the nations protest and the peoples grumble in vain? Kings on earth rise up and princes plot together against the LORD and his anointed: "Let us break their shackles and cast off their chains!" The one enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord derides them, Then speaks to them in anger, terrifies them in wrath: "I myself have installed my king on Zion, my holy mountain." I will proclaim the decree of the LORD, who said to me, "You are my son; today I am your father.
Only ask it of me, and I will make your inheritance the nations, your possession the ends of the earth. With an iron rod you shall shepherd them, like a clay pot you will shatter them." And now, kings, give heed; take warning, rulers on earth.
Serve the LORD with fear; with trembling bow down in homage, Lest God be angry and you perish from the way in a sudden blaze of anger. Happy are all who take refuge in God!
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