Tuesday, March 03, 2009

JPII and Medjugorje

Refuting claims the Pope privately approved of the apparitions.
(It had been my intention to post this a few days ago but I haven't been very pleasant lately and I was afraid of what I might say.)
I've tried to believe in the apparitions at Medjugorje - yet the messages are so banal and soap-opera-like, it is almost impossible to take them seriously. It is my opinion, the people involved - pilgrims and promoters alike - have more of a story going on than the alleged appearances, sky-writing, miraculous photos, and secrets no one is supposed to know. I don't like to discuss the issue very much, mainly because many very nice, very sincere people are so devoted to the cult surrounding the Virgin as she is venerated in Medjugorje, nearly as much as they are taken in by the seers and their on-the-road-again evangelization business.
At Athanasius' blog, Boniface of Unam Sanctam posted an essay refuting the claims JPII supported the apparitions. It is the best I've read so far. Boniface begins:
But one other assertion of the Medjugorje crowd that I have been wanting to debunk for a long time is the oft-repeated claim that John Paul II privately approved of the apparitions and encouraged the faithful in their devotion at Medjugorje. This is manifestly false, and whatever else one may think of John Paul II, one thing we can definitely clear him of is promoting Medjugorje. Therefore, I want to clear up with this post once and for all the confusion and untruths promoted by those who assert that the Pope, either JPII of BXVI, has ever approved Medjugorje, even implicitly. - Read the entire post here: Source

It seems so many people are willing to believe just about anyone who claims to know the mind of the popes, or who claim, "The Pope said this" or "the Pope said that." Show me the document that says so.
Photo: Alleged miraculous image of the Madonna at Medjugorje. I wonder if JPII has ever shown up since his death?


  1. David4:43 PM

    Ok Terry, this post baited me. I cannot ignore the M phenomenon no matter how much I try. Chalk it up to loosing what I thought was a good friendship when my buddy became a M-ite and I said I would await Church discernment. I was shunned by him and the gang in a way that would make the jehovaj Witnesses proud.

    For first of all it does NOT matter what JPII or any pope says or thinks privately. A pope's personal ideas are NOT (repeat NOT) covered under his umbrella of magisterial teaching. BUT at the same time I doubt any pope would even mouth his private opinion of an alleged apparition knowing it would be hijacked.

    The same thing happened with Padre Pio and Grarbandal. No matter how much his friary insisted that PP did NOT support Garabandal the rumor continues. And Grarbandal, BTW has WAY more going for it in authenticity of style and duration that does the on-going Marian showcase in M.

    If "by their fruits you shall know them" why do the M crowds ignore the improprieties and Church punishment of the priest who was the original (?) spiritual director of the "visionaries"?

    Why those who appeal to JPII as church authority for validity of the visions continue to ignore the fact that the bishop who DOES have church authority over the site has declared it to NOT be of supernatural origin?

    I think manyt things keep M going, besides the HUGE mega-industry it has spawned. There have been genuine inspirational conversions in people's hearts at M. I personally know a married couple, 2 priests and a religious who were uetterly converted from terrible lifetsyles after going to M. But is that alone proof of authenticity? Is God supposed to ignore prayers and good faith offered at M just because its not a real shrine?

    Other mystics (of later-to-be-approved sites) were often told to cease and desist by church authority. And they did. Told to stop promoting the message. And they did. Told to no longer celebrate Mass in public. And they did. Etc etc etc.

    I personally think the devil loves to keep up the shenanigans of M with its flashy phenomena in order to distract us from the apparent humdrum of daily Christian living.
    I have a hard enough time living the Gospel faithfully and virtuously as it is...I for one do not need more distractions.

  2. There's three types of people I have learned to never take on. Best to let them be:

    1. Ex-smokers
    2. Moleskine sketchbook lovers
    3. Medjugorjeites.

    (I'm a bad boy, I skimmed.)

  3. I should like to add that I learned the lesson on group 3 while working a short stint (9 months) in a Catholic bookstore. It was best not to even think thoughts that might be other than 100% affirming of the big M in the presence of bigMers. I recall a customer who became rather unChristian in her severity when I happened to mention that I had seen online that day a mention of the Vatican potentially issuing a statement not in full support of the big M. You know who took the fall and it wasn't the big M.

  4. Terry, like you I don't want to put down sincere people who have connected spiritually with Medjugorje. But it reminds me of nothing so much as a reality show; that we have to tune into in order to get the latest developments.

  5. Everyone in my parish that is Pro Med. are all women over 60 and have very emotional personalities. Yes, there has been good fruit - but the obedience is not there. I know I won't be going. One lady in my parish says you only go if Our Lady invites you - well, Mama Mary is tellin' me to stay put!

  6. Yes, I am in agreement Terry, I have posted on this phenom over a few years and the evidence that you cite is compelling. The clincher for me is the spirit of disobedience to the Bishop of Mostar-Duvno. He has told the visionaries to stop promoting their "messages" but the persist and say the Bishop is incorrect. Now, being reasonable, would the Blessed Mother encourage disobedience to one's Bishop and defiance of the Church hierarchy? The spirit of defiance and disobedience convinces me that pending approbation, this phenom is not correct.

    This outlook of mine and refusal to attend any Medj events in the parish where I travel to work makes me somewhat a pariah. I am shunned by many. That is okay, less distraction, but Medj people are cultish and cliqueish.

  7. BTW, Ivan of Medj fame is giving a talk in Las Vegas, I can send you the flyer if you are interested.


  8. I don't know why parish priests in America would allow any of these "professional bishop- defying- seers" to speak in their parishes.
    The seers shouldn't be allowed to present themselves as Catholics in good standing since they openly defy their local bishop on a serious matter.

  9. Thanks everyone - don't you love the miraculous photo - it had to be turned to recognize the eidelon.

  10. David9:56 AM

    VEGAS!!!!???? I am SO there. Maybe he and the other "visionaries" can learn a lesson there (if you pardon the following paraphasing):

    What happens in Medjugorje, stays in Medjugorje". :)

  11. David - ROFLMAO!!!!

  12. A question which might solve the mystery of Medjugorje is: why would one of the seers say she saw and conversed with her dead mother when according to the parable of Lazarus and the rich man in Scripture this is impossible?

  13. Anonymous6:00 AM

    I wish you all to make that decission (for whatever reason) and come to Medjugorje one day. Who has not been there can not understand anything. All arguments are pointless (although all can be explained).
    At the moment you are just wasting time and giving up goods, blessing and love you could gain.


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