See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. - James 5:7

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Precipitous conclusions regarding Medjugorje.


Speculative...*

Bloggers and their commenters are suggesting a decision and official report will be issued in November of this year.  Those are simply rumors of course, to my knowledge, no one has made an official announcement.  Such speculations precede every controversial issue under study or investigation conducted by the Vatican anyway - and yet people thirst for new leaks, and 'insiders' are willing to bait them.  That said, if  and when the findings of the report are made public, I doubt very much the 'new findings' will contradict the earlier conclusions and directives of the local bishops conference:
"On the base of studies made so far, it cannot be affirmed that these matters concern supernatural apparitions or revelations.  Yet the gathering of the faithful from various parts of the world to Medjugorje, inspired by reasons of faith or other motives, require the pastoral attention and care, first of all, of the local Bishop and then of the other bishops with him, so that in Medjugorje and all connected with it, a healthy devotion towards the Blessed Virgin Mary according to the teachings of the Church may be promoted. The Bishops will also provide special liturgical and pastoral directives corresponding to this aim. At the same time, they will continue to study all the events of Medjugorje through the commissions."

What else can they say? 

I agree with what Fr. Mitch Pacwa has said about the matter:
EWTN talk show host the Rev. Mitch Pacwa, who has been to Medjugorje and did a documentary about it with actor Martin Sheen, said the Vatican will look carefully at the reported messages.
For example, early on, there was a dispute between Franciscans based in Medjugorje and a regional bishop, who was skeptical of the Marian apparitions.

“Some of the visionaries took a stance and said the Virgin Mary is on the side of the Franciscans,” Pacwa said. “That’s odd. That’s inappropriate. The church does not want the visionaries to ask questions trying to get answers. If it’s from God, God is going to take the initiative.” (In fact, St. John of the Cross tells us God is offended by such initiatives.)

Pacwa said there is no chance for the visions to get approval while they’re still going on, and it’s a long shot even after they stop.

One quirk that emerged was when two of the Medjugorje visionaries said the Virgin Mary endorsed a book, “The Poem of the Man-God,” that had been condemned by the Vatican. The fanciful 1940s biography of Jesus by Maria Valtorta contains details like a dancing girl brushing up against Jesus, Joseph giving young Jesus an anachronistic tool kit with screwdrivers and the Virgin Mary making statements such as “man disgusts me,” Pacwa said.
“The book had been condemned by the church in 1959 because it said a lot of silly things that contradicted what was in the gospels,” Pacwa said. “The church rejected it. Any vision must be judged by revelation that exists in the gospels. You can’t say anything you want.”

What may be the unraveling of the Medjugorje visions is the lack of any spiritual depth to the messages, Pacwa said.

“That is a much more pointed critique,” he said.

The writings of Sister Faustina, now a saint, describe visions from Jesus. “As you kept reading, a new depth of spiritual life began to show itself,” Pacwa said. “You can see definite growth over the years in her spiritual messages. I don’t see that with the messages of Medjugorje. They tend to be the same thing over and over again. Something I would look for is a growth in spiritual depth. I haven’t sensed it.”

Pacwa said Vatican theologians will take all that into account and that Medjugorje in the end may be denied church approval.

“I don’t have a sense this is going to go swimmingly. I am very impressed with a number of the positive things I have experienced there. I have a lot of respect for the good things that have occurred. But I’m not going to be naive about some of the problems. It has to be dealt with, with full integrity.” - Religion News Service

Personally, I'm not attracted to Medjugorje, and what a few regard as 'spiritual fruits':  namely, traveling apparitions on demand, as well as Our Lady flying all over to meet the visionaries where ever they happen to be, strikes me as silly - and the messages lack spiritual depth, as Fr. Pacwa says.  Likewise the offshoot apparitions and locutions pilgrims report after they return home strikes me as curious.  That said - people need direction - they need good shepherds - so they are not so easily led astray.  It seems to me the Church is somehow failing these people who travel the world looking for signs and wonders on mountain tops, in corn fields, and on tree trunks.

*Just like the guessing game over the SSPX normalization.



Vicka is always so happy!

10 comments:

  1. I trust Father Pacwa on this one. I know this whole issue is a "sacred cow" with many. I know people who have been there and swear by the place. I've always been skeptical about the whole thing.

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    1. Me too - I tend to think it is a fake - much like Fr. Corapi and Fr. Maciel - "leading astray even the elect" as Christ said.

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  2. "No spiritual depth" to the messages. I am so glad that someone I respect as much as Father Pacwa was able to verbalize something that has always bothered me about Medjugorje. The messages have gone on for over 30 years now, and yet they are constant repetition. And I went there 20 years ago, saw the sun spinning,etc., and received many graces.

    But something just doesn't seem quite right. I await the Church's decision. Going there and praying for hours/day and attending two daily Masses, praying 15 decades of the rosary, and going to confession, etc., is like an intense extended retreat...and one would expect many graces to flow from that. Our Lord is at work in us whenever and wherever we seek Him.

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  3. Patricia,

    God offers us many graces, which we receive if we're open to them. I have received many graces, some of which I only received through obedience.

    Nan

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  4. I see a miracle every time I go our Perpetual Adoration chapel.

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  5. ...every time I go to our Perpetual Adoration chapel.

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  6. Perpetual Miracle Chapel?

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  7. I'm saddened to hear that gowns are worn in heaven. I always thought that shame was left behind there. Apparently it isn't even up to the measure of the garden of Eden before the fall.

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    1. Leo, don't be sad - I think the robes are sheer - I think there is a line from scripture which describes it, 'clothed in light as in a garment'.

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