Monday, February 08, 2010

More thoughts on Medjugorje.


"Good fruits alone are still no confirmation for the supernatural origin of a visionary phenomenon." - Manfred Hauke
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I came across an extraordinary interview on Pewsitters dealing with Medjugorje.  It was conducted with a famous Mariologist, Fr. Manfred Hauke.  The interview is rather lengthy, but well worth the read.  Here is an excerpt:
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"For pastoral care it is important, to lead the renewal of faith created by the stream of pilgrims to Medjugorje into the roads of the Church, and not let the devotees of the phenomenon fall into the void. Marian devotees would be well advised to concentrate on trustworthy prophetic revelations, approved and well accepted by the whole Church, so that they would deal with, say, Guadalupe, Lourdes, or Fatima. Questionable and unequivocally false phenomena should be presented as such. Therefore it is not sufficient, in my estimation, to pragmatically recognize Medjugorje as a "place of prayer", without reaching a judgment on the events that lie at its basis. German bishops also reacted against this approach: non-recognition of alleged "apparitions" along with simultaneous recognition of the place as an official "shrine" (for example, with respect to Heroldsbach and Marienfried). If a new investigative commission reaches a recognition that certain characteristics indissolubly connected with the phenomenon of the apparitions speak against their authenticity, then the love of truth demands that this be made known with all clarity and that Catholic Christians be warned expressly against "pilgrimages". The principle is valid here: "bonum ex integra causa; malum ex quovis defectu" ("Good comes from an undamaged cause; bad from some kind of defect"). If a drink is mixed with rat poison, it's not sufficient to point out that it contains only two percent strychnine with 98 percent water: the whole drink has to be poured out. If the Church does not, herself, finally lance the boil that is connected with Medjugorje, then anti-Catholic groups will do the job and with pleasure. And then the patience extended to the enthusiasm of Medjugorje could become a boomerang that attacks the Church from inside, if the groups previously connected with the Bosnian "place of pilgrimage", finally disillusioned, should turn against the Faith and the Church. And that could also explain that the devil takes "good fruits" as part of doing his business in Medjugorje: if he can bring forth a vastly greater harm to the Church in the end. Pastoral love must not be separated from the love of truth." - Mariologist Hauke on Medjugorje: "Don't let the devotees fall into the void"
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Fr. Hauke's discernment and analysis is very sound, based upon authentic mystical theology of the Catholic Church. 
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H/T Deacon's Bench

11 comments:

  1. "A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good
    fruit." ~ Matthew 7:18

    When the Church judges, it judges solely the fruits. The fruits are Everything! Is this what Our Lord said true or not? It's not half true!

    ---

    Also that one has to wait for Approval goes against the mind of the Church. The following of the Apparition has to come before Approval. Or else, there will be nothing for the Church to make it's approval! You'd have a catch-22. This is what the CCC says when it says that the Sensuum Fidei knows how to recognize these things!

    "The veneration of a particular saint is not a result of the act of
    canonization. Actually, the reverse is true: canonization comes as a
    result of the popular veneration of a saint." ~ Orthodox Archbishop
    Hilarion Alfeyev

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  2. Not speaking of anyone in particular, but ome of these Medjugorje critics should really start reading their Bible and the CCC (Catholic Catechism of the Catholic Church).

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  3. Jtaylor:
    "The veneration of a particular saint is not a result of the act of
    canonization. Actually, the reverse is true: canonization comes as a
    result of the popular veneration of a saint." ~ Orthodox Archbishop
    Hilarion Alfeyev

    Fascinating observation.

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  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  5. As far as I know, the bishop of Medj. has said that nothing spiritual is happening there.

    And I don't agree with your analysis of the good/bad fruits. I believe the Church applies that formula to the seers, not to those who visit. That's the key difference, imho.

    Be obedient to the Church. It's safer that way.

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  6. sorry - should have written "nothing supernatural is happening there"

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  7. Larry,

    You are correct that the Church concerns herself with the fruits in the following order:

    1) alleged seers/locutionists
    2) closest associates (spiritual directors, collaborators, etc)
    3) followers

    However, before the Church concerns herself with fruits, She judges what are referred to as events. These would be those actions tied to the alleged seers mainly.

    Judging events is like investigating a crime scene. Hence, those events at the initiation of the phenomena are studied closer than events happening nearly 30 years later.

    This is why the canonical sanctions against Tomislav Vlasic were so important. Not just the local bishop, but the Holy See stated that the sanctions were in the context of Medjugorje. The Medjugorje Movement has tried to distance him by virtue of his long absence in Medjugorje. However, it has bee factually established by the bishop, supported thru the writings of promoters back in the 80's that he was indeed their spritual director for several years.

    It is also why the bishop has focused on the lies on the part of the alleged seers over the "Great Sign". Ivan was especially established to be a liar. Again, he goes back to the early days in his recently released study at cbismo.com (click on the tab for Medjugore Phenomena and choose the English section .... I'm on my iPhone, hence difficult)


    It is

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  8. I've never been a Medjugore fan or follower, and I pretty much agree with what you are saying about the "fruits" not being a sign that something is of supernatural origin. However I do know one priest who credits his vocational discernment to a trip to Medjugore. I suppose it is an example of how God can bring good out of any circumstance.

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  9. Diane - your comment seemed to get cut off. I hope you're okay!

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  10. Larry,

    I'm fine - it's just difficult typing in a detailed explanation on an iPhone (LOL). I think that "It is" might have been something I started, but then didn't need (and didn't realize was still there).

    I think you get the point on how the Church distinguishes between "events" and "fruits" with events being the most important. In fact, the 1978 Criteria for Discernment of Apparitions states that the events would be judged ahead of fruits. And, it makes sense.

    I think Fr. Hauke made a good illustration when he used the example of a placebo. Many people feel better after a placebo, but we cannot attribute the cause of their feeling better to that pill.

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  11. Another article on Medjugorje
    http://danpatrascu.eu/?p=809

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